Microfluidic-controlled manufacture of liposomes for the solubilisation of a poorly water soluble drug

Elisabeth Kastner, Varun Verma, Deborah Lowry, Yvonne Perrie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)
171 Downloads (Pure)


Besides their well-described use as delivery systems for water-soluble drugs, liposomes have the ability to act as a solubilizing agent for drugs with low aqueous solubility. However, a key limitation in exploiting liposome technology is the availability of scalable, low-cost production methods for the preparation of liposomes. Here we describe a new method, using microfluidics, to prepare liposomal solubilising systems which can incorporate low solubility drugs (in this case propofol). The setup, based on a chaotic advection micromixer, showed high drug loading (41 mol%) of propofol as well as the ability to manufacture vesicles with at prescribed sizes (between 50 and 450 nm) in a high-throughput setting. Our results demonstrate the ability of merging liposome manufacturing and drug encapsulation in a single process step, leading to an overall reduced process time. These studies emphasise the flexibility and ease of applying lab-on-a-chip microfluidics for the solubilisation of poorly water-soluble drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-130
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Pharmaceutics
Issue number1-2
Early online date25 Feb 2015
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2015


  • chemistry, pharmaceutical
  • cholesterol
  • kinetics
  • lab-on-a-chip devices
  • microfluidic analytical techniques
  • nanoparticles
  • particle size
  • phosphatidylcholines
  • propofol
  • solubility
  • solvents
  • technology, pharmaceutical
  • unilamellar liposomes

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