Pharmaceutical nanosuspensions are formed when drug crystals are suspended in aqueous media in the presence of stabilizers. This technology offers a convenient way to enhance the dissolution of poorly water-soluble drug compounds. The stabilizers exert their action through electrostatic or steric interactions, however, the molecular requirements of stabilizing agents have not been studied extensively. Here, four structurally related amphiphilic Janus-dendrimers were synthesized and screened to determine the roles of different macromolecular domains on the stabilization of drug crystals. Physical interaction and nanomilling experiments have substantiated that Janus-dendrimers with fourth generation hydrophilic dendrons were superior to third generation analogues and Poloxamer 188 in stabilizing indomethacin suspensions. Contact angle and surface plasmon resonance measurements support the hypothesis that Janus-dendrimers bind to indomethacin surfaces via hydrophobic interactions and that the number of hydrophobic alkyl tails determines the adsorption kinetics of the Janus-dendrimers. The results showed that amphiphilic Janus-dendrimers adsorb onto drug particles and thus can be used to provide steric stabilization against aggregation and recrystallization. The modular synthetic route for new amphiphilic Janus-dendrimers offers, thus, for the first time a versatile platform for stable general-use stabilizing agents of drug suspensions.
- drug suspensions
- pharmaceutical nanosuspensions
- drug crystals
- amphiphilic Janus-dendrimers