Efficient Encapsulation of a Water-Soluble Molecule into Lipid Vesicles Using W/O/W Multiple Emulsions via Solvent Evaporation
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We developed a novel method for preparing lipid vesicles with high entrapment efficiency and controlled size using water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) multiple emulsions as vesicle templates. Preparation consists of three steps. First, a water-in-oil (W/O) emulsion containing to-be-entrapped hydrophilic molecules in the water phase and vesicle-forming lipids in the oil phase was formulated by sonication. Second, this W/O emulsion was introduced into a microchannel emulsification device to prepare a W/O/W multiple emulsion. In this step, sodium caseinate was used as the external emulsifier. Finally, organic solvent in the oil phase was removed by simple evaporation under ambient conditions to afford lipid vesicles. The diameter of the prepared vesicles reflected the water droplet size of the primary W/O emulsions, indicating that vesicle size could be controlled by the primary W/O emulsification process. Furthermore, high entrapment yields for hydrophilic molecules (exceeding 80 % for calcein) were obtained. The resulting vesicles had a multilamellar vesicular structure, as confirmed by transmission electron microscopy.
KeywordsPhospholipids Processing technology Lipids Emulsions/colloids Lipid chemistry Lipid analysis
We thank Prof. Peter Walde (ETH-Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland) for stimulating discussions. This work was partially supported by the Adaptable and Seamless Technology Transfer Program through Target-driven R&D (A-STEP) (No. AS232Z02816F) of the Japan Science and Technology Agency, and a Grant-in-Aid for Young Scientists (B) (No. 22760613) from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.
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