This study is the first of its kind to test the use of elongated silica microparticles (EMP) and tailorable nanoemulsions (TNE) to improve the topical delivery of hydrophobic drug surrogates.
The EMPs penetrate through the skin's outer layer and stop at the dermal-epidermal junction (DEJ), while the TNEs, which are highly stable, allow for high drug loading levels due to their oil core.
The researchers used a fluorescent lipophilic dye, DiI, as a hydrophobic drug surrogate and tested four different coating approaches to combine EMP and TNE in human skin. They also used 6-carboxyfluorescein, a model molecule for topically delivered hydrophobic drugs, in volunteers for the first time.
This research is relevant to the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries, particularly those involved in the development and application of topical drug delivery systems.