Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Thermo-responsive hydrogels for intravitreal injection and biomolecule release
by Drapala, Pawel, Ph.D., Illinois Institute of Technology, 2011, 104; 3486313
Abstract (Summary)

In this dissertation, we develop an injectable polymer system to enable localized and prolonged release of therapeutic biomolecules for improved treatment of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Thermo-responsive hydrogels derived from N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAAm) and cross-linked with poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) poly(L-Lactic acid) (PLLA) copolymer were synthesized via free-radical polymerization. These materials were investigated for (a) phase change behavior, (b) in-vitro degradation, (c) capacity for controlled drug delivery, and (d) biocompatibility.

The volume-phase transition temperature (VPTT) of the PNIPAAm- co-PEG-b-PLLA hydrogels was adjusted using hydrophilic and hydrophobic moieties so that it is ca. 33°C. These hydrogels did not initially show evidence of degradation at 37°C due to physical cross-links of collapsed PNIPAAm. Only after addition of glutathione chain transfer agents (CTA)s to the precursor did the collapsed hydrogels become fully soluble at 37°C. CTAs significantly affected the release kinetics of biomolecules; addition of 1.0 mg/mL glutathione to 3 mM cross-linker accelerated hydrogel degradation, resulting in 100% release in less than 2 days.

This work also explored the effect of PEGylation in order to tether biomolecules to the polymer matrix. It was demonstrated that non-site-specific PEGylation can postpone the burst release of solutes (up to 10 days in hydrogels with 0.5 mg/mL glutathione). Cell viability assays showed that at least two 20-minute buffer extraction steps were needed to remove cytotoxic elements from the hydrogels. Clinically-used therapeutic biomolecules Lucentis® and Avastin® were demonstrated to be both stable and bioactive after release form PNIPAAm-co-PEG-b-PLLA hydrogels. The thermo-responsive hydrogels presented here offer a promising platform for the localized delivery of proteins such as recombinant antibodies.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Perez-Luna, Victor H.
School: Illinois Institute of Technology
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-B 73/02, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Pharmacy sciences, Polymer chemistry, Materials science
Keywords: Age-related macular degeneration, Controlled release, Hydrogels, Intravitreal injection, Thermoresponsiveness
Publication Number: 3486313
ISBN: 978-1-267-03966-8
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