Iron-oxide embedded solid lipid nanoparticles for magnetically controlled heating and drug delivery
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This paper presents the development of magnetic lipid nanoparticles that could serve as controlled delivery vehicles for releasing encapsulated drugs in a desired manner. The nanoparticles are composed of multiple drugs in lipid matrices, which are solid at body temperature and melt around 45°C to 55°C. In addition, super-paramagnetic γ-Fe2O3 particles with sizes ranging from 5 to 25 nm are surface modified and dispersed uniformly in the lipid nanoparticles. In the prototype demonstration, lipid nanoparticles with average sizes between 100 and 180 nm were fabricated by high-pressure homogenization at elevated temperatures. When exposed to an alternating magnetic field of 60 kA/m at 25 kHz, a solution containing 2 g/L encapsulated γ-Fe2O3 particles showed a temperature increase from 37°C to 50°C in 20 min. Meanwhile, the dissipated heat melted the surrounding lipid matrices and resulted in an accelerated release of the encapsulated drugs. Within 20 min, approximately 35% of the encapsulated drug molecules were released from the lipid nanoparticles through diffusion. As such, the presented lipid nanoparticles enable a new scheme that combines magnetic control of heating and drug delivery, which could greatly enhance the performance of encapsulated drugs.