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AAPS PharmSciTech. 2004 December; 5(4): 18–24.
Published online 2004 September 13. doi:  10.1208/pt050453
PMCID: PMC2750478

Particle size and temperature effect on the physical stability of PLGA nanospheres and microspheres containing Bodipy


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of particle size, storage temperature, and duration of storage on the physical stability and morphology of polylactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) nanospheres and microspheres. PLGA nanospheres and microspheres containing the fluorescent dye, Bodipy, were prepared in varying sizes by controlling the method and degree of agitation during the emulsification phase of preparation. Mean diameters of the particles were measured by dynamic light scattering. To evaluate the effect of storage temperature and duration of storage on the extent of aggregation, nanospheres and microspheres were stored at 4°C, 25°C, 37°C, and 50°C for 6 days and then monitored using both confocal and scanning electron microscopy. The mean ±SD diameters of PLGA particles containing Bodipy were: 266.9±2.8, 351.6±1.8, 988.8±14.1, and 1865.9±67.0 nm. The extent of aggregation of the particulate delivery system decreased as the mean diameter increased, and increased as the storage temperature increased. The maximum extent of aggregation was observed with the smallest (266 nm) nanospheres. Microspheres did not aggregate. The aggregation of nanospheres was significantly reduced by introducing an additional evaporation step during preparation, suggesting that migration of residual dichloromethane from within the nanospheres may have dissolved the PLGA on the surface. The extent of aggregation of nanospheres increased as the temperature was increased from 4°C to 50°C, and decreased as particle size increased. To avoid aggregation, PLGA nanospheres should be stored at 4°C.

Keywords: nanospheres, microspheres, Bodipy, temperature, aggregation

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Selected References

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