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Fabrication of novel hybrid nano-carriers for pulmonary drug delivery

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Pulmonary drug delivery is a non-invasive route for drug delivery where the lungs provide a thin, yet extremely efficient absorptive mucosal membrane with a good blood supply. Delivery to lungs has always been a challenging task where the drug particles are delivered deep into the alveoli. Using molecular mixtures of drug-carrier can achieve a unique control over drug release and can be used to release the drug at site of action (such as in cystic fibrosis).
Cystic fibrosis is a chronic lung disease characterized by thick secretion of mucus. As a result of the accumulated sputum secretion, patients usually suffer from pseudomonas aeruginosa infections, which can be complicated to treat. Using the pulmonary route is a promising route for delivery, as the bacterial infection will be directly targeted. The first line for treatment would be a quinolone-based antibiotic such as ciprofloxacin, however, because of the thick sputum penetration of the antibiotic to reach the bacteria can be difficult. Recently, the use of silver nanoparticles has showed the potential to target Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Therefore, a combination of silver and ciprofloxacin nanoparticles will be a promising approach to have dual antibacterial activity. In addition, delivery of ciprofloxacin via the oral route suffers from solubility shortcoming, which limits bioavailability; hence using the pulmonary route and using the current formulation can help to improve the bioavailability of ciprofloxacin.
The solubility and in vitro deposition of the drug will be studied to ensure their properties are tailored for delivery to the alveolar region. Effect of carriers will be studied as well as the ratio of the drug in relation to the formation of molecular complexes with the carrier. Techniques such as Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermal analysis, X-Ray Powder Diffraction (XRPD) and electron microscopy will also be used.

Funding Notes

This project will suit a candidate with a good first degree in pharmacy, chemistry, biomedical sciences or any related discipline.

How good is research at University of Reading in Allied Health Professions, Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 23.20

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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