, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 313-319
Date: 21 Nov 2007

Novel Lipid and Preservative-free Propofol Formulation: Properties and Pharmacodynamics

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Propofol is a water-insoluble intravenous anesthetic agent that is actually formulated as a water-in-oil emulsion with known drawbacks such as pain on injection, microorganism growth support and stability. We report on the properties of formulations of propofol in poly (N-vinyl-2-pyrrolidone)-block-poly(d,l-lactide), PVP–PLA, polymeric micelles (Propofol-PM).


Microbial growth in these formulations was evaluated with Pseudomonas aeruginosa (ATCC 9027), Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 6538), Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922) and Candida albicans (ATCC 10231). Sleep-recovery studies in female Sprague–Dawley rats, at a dose of 10mg/kg were performed to compare pharmacodynamic profiles of the new Propofol-PM formulations with those of Diprivan®, a commercially available lipid based propofol formulation.


Growth of microorganisms was not supported in the Propofol-PM formulations tested. No significant differences in times to unconsciousness, awakening, recovery of righting reflex and full recovery were observed between Propofol-PM formulations and Diprivan®.


Propofol loaded in PVP–PLA micelles (Propofol-PM) is not significantly different in terms of pharmacodynamic but demonstrates no microorganism growth support and improved stability that opens up the door to pain on injection reduction strategy.