Break | AIChE


As compared to traditional emulsion-based methods, microfluidics allows for precise size control of polymeric microparticles that encapsulate drug. Microparticle size is a key factor impacting in vivo biodistribution and potential for cellular phagocytosis. Optimal, localized drug delivery reduces the required drug load, enhances therapeutic effects, and improves overall safety for patients. For these reasons, a microfluidic method to fabricate poly-lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) microparticles was explored. Two commercial microfluidic chips (Micronit, The Netherlands) with different channel widths (500mm and 100mm) were tested. Larger channels allowed for better stabilization of flow rates providing sufficient control to make microparticles and were better cleared of residual material allowing for reuse. The capacity to encapsulate drug with this approach was verified using a corticosteroid desired for local delivery to the sinuses. Comparable drug loading to emulsion microparticles demonstrated feasibility of creating monodispersed microparticles with this microfluidic system for controlled release drug administration.