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1.  Influence of pH on Transungual Passive and Iontophoretic Transport 
Journal of pharmaceutical sciences  2010;99(4):1955-1967.
The present study investigated the effects of pH on nail permeability and the transport of ions such as sodium (Na) and chloride (Cl) ions endogenous to nail and hydronium and hydroxide ions present at low and high pH, which might compete with drug transport across hydrated nail plate during iontophoresis. Nail hydration and passive transport of water across the nail at pH 1–13 were assessed. Subsequently, passive and iontophoretic transport experiments were conducted using 22Na and 36Cl ions under various pH conditions. Nail hydration was independent of pH under moderate pH conditions and increased significantly under extreme pH conditions (pH>11). Likewise, nail permeability for water was pH independent at pH 1–10 and an order of magnitude higher at pH 13. The results of passive and iontophoretic transport of Na and Cl ions are consistent with the permselective property of nail. Interestingly, extremely acidic conditions (e.g., pH 1) altered nail permselectivity with the effect lasting several days at the higher pH conditions. Hydronium and hydroxide ion competition in iontophoretic transport was generally negligible at pH 3–11 was significant at the extreme pH conditions studied.
PMCID: PMC2943382  PMID: 19904826
pH; human nail plate; transungual transport; iontophoresis
2.  Ion-exchange membrane assisted transdermal iontophoretic delivery of salicylate and acyclovir 
International journal of pharmaceutics  2008;369(1-2):105-113.
The presence of endogenous competing counterions is a main reason for the generally low efficiency of transdermal iontophoretic drug delivery. The objective of the present study was to test the hypothesis that the incorporation of an ion-exchange membrane (Ionac) in an iontophoresis system to hinder transdermal transport of these counterions can enhance iontophoretic delivery. The properties of Ionac were characterized in passive and iontophoretic transport experiments. Iontophoretic transport across human epidermal membrane (HEM) and across HEM in series with Ionac was then studied. To assess the effect of HEM electrical resistance upon Ionac-assisted iontophoresis, HEM resistance was reduced in the iontophoresis experiments with alternating current (AC). Salicylate (SA) was the negatively charged permeant first tested in this study. Mannitol was the model permeant to examine the effects of electroosmosis. At the completion of the SA study, experiments were performed with acyclovir (ACV), an antiviral drug with limited water solubility. When Ionac was used to enhance SA transdermal fluxes, higher SA .uxes were observed with HEM of lower resistances in Ionac-assisted iontophoresis. Up to a four-fold flux enhancement was achieved when the electrical resistance of HEM was reduced using an AC iontophoresis method. For ACV, two-fold flux enhancement was observed in Ionac-assisted iontophoresis compared with the conventional iontophoresis baseline. In all experiments, the contribution of electroosmosis to drug transport was less than 10%. The present study has demonstrated the potential of a new approach using a positively charged ion-exchange membrane to enhance transdermal iontophoretic transport of negatively charged drugs.
PMCID: PMC2702323  PMID: 19041698
Iontophoresis; Transdermal; Ion-exchange membrane; Salicylate; Acyclovir; Transport enhancement
3.  Effects of Ionic Strength on Passive and Iontophoretic Transport of Cationic Permeant Across Human Nail 
Pharmaceutical research  2009;26(6):1446-1455.
Transport across the human nail under hydration can be modeled as hindered transport across aqueous pore pathways. As such, nail permselectivity to charged species can be manipulated by changing the ionic strength of the system in transungual delivery to treat nail diseases. The present study investigated the effects of ionic strength upon transungual passive and iontophoretic transport.
Transungual passive and anodal iontophoretic transport experiments of tetraethylammonium ion (TEA) were conducted under symmetric conditions in which the donor and receiver had the same ionic strength in vitro. Experiments under asymmetric conditions were performed to mimic the in vivo conditions. Prior to the transport studies, TEA uptake studies were performed to assess the partitioning of TEA into the nail.
Permselectivity towards TEA was inversely related to ionic strength in both passive and iontophoretic transport. The permeability and transference number of TEA were higher at lower ionic strengths under the symmetric conditions due to increased partitioning of TEA into the nail. Transference numbers were smaller under the asymmetric conditions compared with their symmetric counterparts.
The results demonstrate significant ionic strength effects upon the partitioning and transport of a cationic permeant in transungual transport, which may be instrumental in the development of transungual delivery systems.
PMCID: PMC2922002  PMID: 19267187
charge-charge interactions; human nail; ionic strength; iontophoresis; partition coefficient
4.  Screening of Venlafaxine Hydrochloride for Transdermal Delivery: Passive Diffusion and Iontophoresis 
AAPS PharmSciTech  2008;9(3):791-797.
The objective of the study was to investigate in vitro transdermal delivery of venlafaxine hydrochloride across the pigskin by passive diffusion and iontophoresis. For passive diffusion, experiments were carried out in Franz diffusion cell whereas for iontophoretic permeation, the diffusion cell was modified to contain both the donor and return electrode on the same side of skin. Anodal iontophoresis was carried out using a current density of 0.5 mA/cm2. Donor concentrations used were 585.5 mg/ml (saturated solution) and 100 mg/ml. Experiments initially performed to determine the transport efficiency of venlafaxine ions showed promising results. Iontophoresis increased the permeation rate at both concentration levels over their passive counterparts (P < 0.01), but surprisingly higher steady-state flux was obtained from lower donor drug load (P < 0.01). The favorable pH of the unsaturated solutions is suggested to be the cause for this effect. Mild synergistic effect was observed when iontophoresis was carried out incorporating peppermint oil in the donor but the same was not found in passive diffusion. Highest steady-state flux obtained in the experiment was 3.279 μmol/cm2/h when peppermint oil (0.1%) was included in the donor. As the maintenance requirement of venlafaxine hydrochloride is approximately 9.956 μmol/h, the results suggested that the drug is a promising candidate for iontophoretic delivery.
PMCID: PMC2977036  PMID: 18592380
iontophoresis; menthol; peppermint oil; transdermal; venlafaxine hydrochloride
5.  Investigation of the ex vivo and in vivo iontophoretic delivery of aceclofenac from topical gels in Albino rats 
Iontophoresis was used to enhance the delivery of aceclofenac (ACF) from topical gels formulated with various polymers for the purpose of relieving pain and inflammation.
Materials and Methods
Gels were formulated from hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose (HPMC), carbopol 934P, and sodium carboxymethyl cellulose (NaCMC). The formulations were evaluated for cathodal iontophoretic delivery of ACF through excised rat abdominal skin at three levels of current density of 0.5, 0.6 and 0.7 mA/cm2. The in vivo effectiveness of the drug delivered passively as well as under the influence of iontophoresis at pH 7.4 at a current density of 0.5 mA/cm2 was also investigated using male Albino rats with carrageenan induced paw edema.
Results and Discussion:
In the ex vivo studies, though it was clear that iontophoresis significantly increased drug permeation through the excised skin from all formulations; the percentage drug permeated from HPMC gels was superior to that from carbopol 934P or NaCMC gels but increased with an increase in the current density only for the former. The steady state flux, permeability coefficient, enhancement factor were significantly greater from HPMC gels than from the gels of the ionic polymers due to the interference of competitive ions. With iontophoresis, the carrageenan induced paw edema was significantly reduced by 61.53% (P < 0.01) for HPMC gels as compared to the control although passive permeation without iontophoresis showed a 54.6% reduction (P < 0.05) at the end of 4 h.
The results of the study indicate that ACF could be administered topically by using iontophoresis from a suitably formulated gel for effective control of pain and inflammation.
PMCID: PMC3757900  PMID: 24015382
Aceclofenac; drug permeation; gels; iontophoresis
6.  Enhancement of iontophoretic transport of diphenhydramine hydrochloride thermosensitive gel by optimization of pH, polymer concentration, electrode design, and pulse rate 
AAPS PharmSciTech  2007;8(4):320-325.
The purpose of the present study was to explore the passive and electrically assisted transdermal transport of diphenhydramine hydrochloride (DPH) by iontophoresis. For better bioavailability, better patient compliance, and enhanced delivery of DPH, an iontophoretic drug delivery system of a thermosensitive DPH gel was formulated using Lutrol F-127. The study was conducted using silver-silver chloride electrodes across hairless pig skin. The effects of pH, polymer concentration, electrode design, and pulse rate on the DPH permeation were investigated. The relationship between temperature, viscosity, and conductance of DPH was correlated using conductometry. Iontophoretic transport of DPH was found to increase with a decrease in the pH of the medium and an increase in the surface area of the electrode. Viscosity measurements and flux calculations indicated the suitability of the Lutrol gel for transdermal iontophoretic delivery of DPH. Anodal pulsed iontophoresis with disc electrode significantly increased the DPH skin permeation as compared with the passive controls.
PMCID: PMC2750706  PMID: 18181541
Pig skin; thermosensitive gel; conductance; viscosity; Permeation; pulsed current
7.  Iontophoretic Transport of Charged Macromolecules across Human Sclera 
International journal of pharmaceutics  2010;388(1-2):107-113.
The mechanisms of transscleral iontophoresis have been investigated previously with small molecules in rabbit sclera. The objective of the present study was to examine transscleral iontophoretic transport of charged macromolecules across excised human sclera. Passive and 2-mA iontophoretic transport experiments were conducted in side-by-side diffusion cells with human sclera. The effects of iontophoresis upon transscleral transport of model permeants bovine serum albumin (BSA) and polystyrene sulfonic acid (PSS) as well as a model drug bevacizumab (BEV) were determined. Passive and iontophoretic transport experiments of tetraethylammonium (TEA) and salicylic acid (SA) and passive transport experiments of the macromolecules served as the controls. The results of iontophoresis enhanced transport of TEA and SA across human sclera were consistent with those in a previous rabbit sclera study. For the iontophoretic transport of macromolecules BSA and BEV, higher iontophoretic fluxes were observed in anodal iontophoresis as compared to passive and cathodal iontophoresis. This suggests the importance of electroosmosis. For the polyelectrolyte PSS, higher iontophoretic flux was observed in cathodal iontophoresis compared to anodal iontophoresis. Both electroosmosis and electrophoresis affected iontophoretic fluxes of the macromolecules; the relative contributions of electroosmosis and electrophoresis were a function of molecular size and charge of the macromolecules.
PMCID: PMC2838613  PMID: 20045044
Electrophoresis; Electroosmosis; Charged macromolecules; Human sclera
8.  Iontophoretic Transport Across a Multiple Membrane System 
The objective of the present study was to investigate the iontophoretic transport behavior across multiple membranes of different barrier properties. Spectra/Por® (SP) and Ionac membranes were the synthetic membranes and sclera was the biomembrane in this model study. The barrier properties of SP membranes were determined individually in passive and iontophoresis transport experiments with tetraethylammonium ion (TEA), chloride ion (Cl), and mannitol as the model permeants. Passive and iontophoretic transport experiments were then conducted with an assembly of SP membranes. The contribution of electroosmosis to iontophoresis was assessed using the mannitol data. Model analysis was performed to study the contribution of diffusion and electromigration to electrotransport across the multiple membrane system. The effects of membrane barrier thickness upon ion-exchange membrane-enhanced iontophoresis were examined with Ionac, SP, and sclera. The present study shows that iontophoretic transport of TEA across the membrane system was related to the thicknesses and permeability coefficients of the membranes and the electromobilities of the permeant across the individual membranes in the assembly. Model analysis suggests significant contribution of diffusion within the membranes across the membrane system, and this mechanism is relatively independent of the current density applied across the system in iontophoresis dominant transport.
PMCID: PMC2603167  PMID: 17990310
iontophoresis; membrane; transport; transference number; electrophoresis; diffusion; mathematical model; drug delivery
9.  Alternating Current (AC) Iontophoretic Transport across Human Epidermal Membrane: Effects of AC Frequency and Amplitude 
Pharmaceutical research  2007;25(3):616-624.
As a continuing effort to understand the mechanisms of alternating current (AC) transdermal iontophoresis and the iontophoretic transport pathways in the stratum corneum (SC), the objectives of the present study were to determine the interplay of AC frequency, AC voltage, and iontophoretic transport of ionic and neutral permeants across human epidermal membrane (HEM) and use AC as a means to characterize the transport pathways.
Materials and Methods
Constant AC voltage iontophoresis experiments were conducted with HEM in 0.10 M tetraethyl ammonium pivalate (TEAP). AC frequencies ranging from 0.0001 to 25 Hz and AC applied voltages of 0.5 and 2.5 V were investigated. Tetraethyl ammonium (TEA) and arabinose (ARA) were the ionic and neutral model permeants, respectively. In data analysis, the logarithm of the permeability coefficients of HEM for the model permeants was plotted against the logarithm of the HEM electrical resistance for each AC condition.
As expected, linear correlations between the logarithms of permeability coefficients and the logarithms of resistances of HEM were observed, and the permeability data were first normalized and then compared at the same HEM electrical resistance using these correlations. Transport enhancement of the ionic permeant was significantly larger than that of the neutral permeant during AC iontophoresis. The fluxes of the ionic permeant during AC iontophoresis of 2.5 V in the frequency range from 5 to 1,000 Hz were relatively constant and were approximately 4 times over those of passive transport. When the AC frequency decreased from 5 to 0.001 Hz at 2.5 V, flux enhancement increased to around 50 times over passive transport.
While the AC frequency for achieving the full effect of iontophoretic enhancement at low AC frequency was lower than anticipated, the frequency for approaching passive diffusion transport at high frequency was higher than expected from the HEM morphology. These observations are consistent with a transport model of multiple barriers in series and the previous hypothesis that the iontophoresis pathways across HEM under AC behave like a series of reservoirs interconnected by short pore pathways.
PMCID: PMC2556247  PMID: 17703345
AC; human skin; iontophoresis; transdermal; transport
10.  Transungual Iontophoretic Transport of Polar Neutral and Positively Charged Model Permeants: Effects of Electrophoresis and Electroosmosis 
Transungual iontophoretic transport of model neutral permeants mannitol (MA), urea (UR), and positively charged permeant tetraethylammonium ion (TEA) across fully hydrated human nail plates at pH 7.4 were investigated in vitro. Four protocols were involved in the transport experiments with each protocol divided into stages including passive and iontophoresis transport of 0.1 and 0.3 mA. Water and permeant uptake experiments of nail clippings were also conducted to characterize the hydration and binding effects of the permeants to the nails. Iontophoresis enhanced the transport of MA and UR from anode to cathode, but this effect (electroosmosis) was marginal. The transport of TEA was significantly enhanced by anodal iontophoresis and the experimental enhancement factors were consistent with the Nernst–Planck theory predictions. Hindered transport was also observed and believed to be critical in transungual delivery. The barrier of the nail plates was stable over the time course of the study, and no significant electric field-induced alteration of the barrier was observed. The present results with hydrated nail plates are consistent with electrophoresis-dominant (the direct field effect) transungual iontophoretic transport of small ionic permeants with small contribution from electroosmosis.
PMCID: PMC2556258  PMID: 17683062
transungual; iontophoresis; human nail plate; electroosmosis; electrophoresis
11.  Mechanistic Study of Electroosmotic Transport Across Hydrated Nail Plates: Effects of pH and Ionic Strength 
Journal of pharmaceutical sciences  2008;97(12):5186-5197.
The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of pH and ionic strength on electroosmotic transport in transungual iontophoresis. Transungual iontophoretic transport of model neutral permeants mannitol (MA) and urea (UR) across fully hydrated human nail plates in phosphate-buffered saline of different pH and ionic strengths were investigated in vitro. Two protocols were involved in the transport experiments with each protocol divided into stages including passive and iontophoresis transport at 0.1 and/or 0.3 mA. Nail plate electrical resistance and water uptake of nail clippings were measured at various pH and ionic strengths. In the pH study, electroosmosis enhanced the anodal transport of MA at pH 9 and cathodal transport at pH 3. The Peclet numbers of MA were more than two times higher than those of UR under these conditions. No significant electroosmosis enhancement was observed for MA and UR at pH 5. In the ionic strength study, a decrease in solution ionic strength from 0.7 to 0.04 M enhanced electroosmotic transport. Nail electrical resistance increased with decreasing the ionic strength of the equilibrating solution, but reached a plateau when the ionic strength was less than approximately 0.07 M. Solution pH and ionic strength had no significant effect on nail hydration. Under the studied pH and ionic strength conditions, the effects of electroosmosis were small compared to the direct-field effects in transungual iontophoretic transport of small to moderate size permeants.
PMCID: PMC2614830  PMID: 18386836
transungual; iontophoresis; human nail plate; electroosmosis
12.  Effect of Modulated Alternating and Direct Current Iontophoresis on Transdermal Delivery of Lidocaine Hydrochloride 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:537941.
The objective of this study was to investigate the iontophoretic delivery of lidocaine hydrochloride through porcine skin and to compare the effects of modulated alternating and direct current iontophoresis. Continuous and modulated iontophoresis was applied for one hour and two hours (0-1 h and 4-5th h) using a 1% w/v solution of lidocaine hydrochloride. Tape stripping was done to quantify the amount of drug permeated into stratum corneum and skin extraction studies were performed to determine the amount of drug in stripped skin. Receptor was sampled and analyzed over predefined time periods. The amount of lidocaine delivered across porcine skin after modulated direct current iontophoresis for 2 h was 1069.87 ± 120.03 μg/sq·cm compared to 744.81 ± 125.41 μg/sq·cm after modulated alternating current iontophoresis for 2 h. Modulated direct current iontophoresis also enhanced lidocaine delivery by twelvefold compared to passive delivery as 91.27 ± 18.71 μg/sq·cm of lidocaine was delivered after passive delivery. Modulated iontophoresis enhanced the delivery of lidocaine hydrochloride across porcine skin compared to the passive delivery. Modulated alternating current iontophoresis for duration of 2 h at frequency of 1 kHz was found to be comparable to the continuous direct current iontophoresis for 1 h.
PMCID: PMC4052077  PMID: 24959580
13.  Enhanced Transdermal Delivery of Granisetron by Using Iontophoresis 
The purpose of the present study was to explore the passive and electrically assisted transdermal transport of Granisetron hydrochloride (GRA) in solution and gel formulation through iontophoresis and also the feasibility of delivering therapeutic amounts of drug for the treatment of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. In this study, iontophoretic permeation of GRA through guinea pig skin using silver-silver chloride electrode was performed and the effects of different variables on this phenomenon were evaluated. Preliminary in-vitro studies using aqueous GRA formulations investigating the effect of drug concentration (5, 10, 15 and 20 mg mL-1) on passive permeation, current density (0.2, 0.4 and 0.5 mA cm-2), mode of current application, penetration enhancers and effect of application duration were performed. As expected, GRA delivery was found to be increased with the elevation in drug concentration and current density. Anodal continuous current delivery was more effective in the permeation of GRA than the pulsed current method. Penetration enhancers were ineffective to show synergistic effect in conjunction with iontophoresis. It was evident that reservoir in the skin was not formed during the iontophoretic delivery. The results confirm that GRA is an excellent candidate for iontophoresis. The present study demonstrated the feasibility of GRA transdermal transport through the Lutrol F-127 gel by iontophoresis. Further in-vivo studies will be required to support in-vitro conclusions and develop in-vitro, in-vivo correlations.
PMCID: PMC3832148  PMID: 24250473
Granisetron; Iontophoresis; Penetration enhancer; Poloxamer; Transdermal
14.  Iontophoretic Permeation of Lisinopril at Different Current Densities and Drug Concentrations 
Advanced Pharmaceutical Bulletin  2012;2(2):239-244.
Purpose: The purpose of the present work was to assess iontophoretic permeation of Lisinopril at different current densities and concentrations for development of patient-controlled active transdermal system. Methods: In vitro iontophoretic transdermal delivery of Lisinopril across the pigskin was investigated at three different drug concentrations and three different current densities (0.25- 0.75 mA/cm2) in the donor cell of the diffusion apparatus, using cathodal iontophoresis along with the passive controls. Results: For passive permeation, the steady state flux significantly increased with the increasing of donor drug concentration. At all concentration levels, iontophoresis considerably increased the permeation rate compared to passive controls. Iontophoretic transport of Lisinopril was to be found increase with current densities. Flux enhancement was highest at the lowest drug load and lowest at the highest drug load. Conclusion: The obtained results indicate that permeation rate of Lisinopril across the pigskin can be considerably enhanced, controlled or optimized by the use of Iontophoresis technique.
PMCID: PMC3845985  PMID: 24312799
Lisinopril; Iontophoresis; Current densities; Pigskin; Transdermal drug delivery
15.  Iontophoretically Enhanced Ciclopirox Delivery into and Across Human Nail Plate 
Journal of pharmaceutical sciences  2009;98(10):3608-3616.
Transungual delivery of antifungal drugs is hindered by the low permeability of human nail plates, and as such, repeated dosing over a long period of time is necessary for effective treatment. The objectives of this study were to explore the possibilities of (a) enhancing the delivery of ciclopirox (CIC) across human nail plates and (b) sustaining CIC delivery from the larger resultant drug depot in the nail plates with constant voltage iontophoresis. In vitro passive and 9 V cathodal iontophoretic transport experiments of CIC across human nails were performed. Transungual CIC delivery with Penlac® was the control. The amounts of CIC released from and deposited in the nails were determined in drug release and extraction experiments, respectively. Iontophoresis increased the flux of CIC permeated across the nail approximately 10 times compared to passive delivery from the same formulation or from Penlac®. A significant amount of CIC was loaded into and released from the nails; the CIC concentrations were estimated to be above the minimum inhibitory concentrations of CIC for dermatophytic molds. The apparent transport lag time decreased in iontophoretic transport. The results demonstrate that iontophoresis was able to deliver an effective amount of CIC into and across the nails, and this suggests the feasibility of a constant voltage battery-powered transungual iontophoretic device.
PMCID: PMC2735582  PMID: 19117048
iontophoresis; ciclopirox; human nail plate; constant voltage; transungual delivery
16.  Examination of penetration routes and distribution of ionic permeants during and after transscleral iontophoresis with magnetic resonance imaging 
Previously, transscleral and transcorneal iontophoretic delivery was studied and compared to passive delivery and intravitreal injection using nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The objective of the present study was to employ MRI to further investigate the factors affecting transscleral iontophoretic delivery. In the present study, anodal and cathodal constant current transscleral iontophoresis were conducted with excised sclera in side-by-side diffusion cells in vitro and with rabbits in vivo. The total current and duration of application were 2 and 4 mA (current density 10 and 20 mA/cm2) and 20–60 min, respectively. The delivery and distribution of the model permeants manganese ion (Mn2+) and manganese ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid complex (MnEDTA2−) into the eye during iontophoresis were determined with MRI and compared with the results obtained in previous studies of subconjunctival injection and passive delivery. Both anodal and cathodal iontophoresis provided significant enhancement in ocular delivery compared to passive transport in the in vitro and in vivo experiments. Transscleral iontophoretic delivery was related to the position and duration of the iontophoresis application in vivo. Permeants were observed to be delivered primarily into the anterior segment of the eye when the pars plana was the application site. Extending the duration of iontophoresis at this site allowed the permeants to be delivered into the vitreous more deeply and to a greater extent than when the application site was at the back of the eye near the fornix. The present results show that electrode placement was an important factor in transscleral iontophoresis, and the ciliary body (pars plana) was determined to be the pathway of least resistance for iontophoretic transport. These new findings continue to support the utility of MRI as a noninvasive technique in ocular drug delivery research and testing.
PMCID: PMC1993903  PMID: 17236728
Ocular; Iontophoresis; Transscleral; Drug delivery; MRI
17.  Iontophoresis: A Potential Emergence of a Transdermal Drug Delivery System 
Scientia Pharmaceutica  2011;80(1):1-28.
The delivery of drugs into systemic circulation via skin has generated much attention during the last decade. Transdermal therapeutic systems propound controlled release of active ingredients through the skin and into the systemic circulation in a predictive manner. Drugs administered through these systems escape first-pass metabolism and maintain a steady state scenario similar to a continuous intravenous infusion for up to several days. However, the excellent impervious nature of the skin offers the greatest challenge for successful delivery of drug molecules by utilizing the concepts of iontophoresis. The present review deals with the principles and the recent innovations in the field of iontophoretic drug delivery system together with factors affecting the system. This delivery system utilizes electric current as a driving force for permeation of ionic and non-ionic medications. The rationale behind using this technique is to reversibly alter the barrier properties of skin, which could possibly improve the penetration of drugs such as proteins, peptides and other macromolecules to increase the systemic delivery of high molecular weight compounds with controlled input kinetics and minimum inter-subject variability. Although iontophoresis seems to be an ideal candidate to overcome the limitations associated with the delivery of ionic drugs, further extrapolation of this technique is imperative for translational utility and mass human application.
PMCID: PMC3293348  PMID: 22396901
Drug delivery; Translational research; Transdermal therapeutic system; Iontophoresis
18.  Sustained release micellar carrier systems for iontophoretic transport of dexamethasone across human sclera 
Journal of Controlled Release  2012;160(1):96-104.
A challenge in ocular drug delivery is to maintain the therapeutic concentration of a drug at the site of action in the eye. The objective of the present study was to investigate the feasibility of micellar carrier systems for sustained drug delivery in transscleral iontophoresis in vitro. Simple and mixed micelles prepared using sodium taurocholate (TA) alone or with egg lecithin (LE) were the carrier systems studied. Dexamethasone (DEX), a poorly water soluble corticosteroid, was the model drug. The micellar carrier systems were first characterized for their solubilization and encapsulation of the drug. Passive and 2-mA iontophoretic (both cathodal and anodal) transport experiments were conducted using these micellar carrier systems in side-by-side diffusion cells with excised human sclera in vitro. Drug release studies were performed after the transport experiments. Saturated DEX solution without the micellar carriers was used as a control. It was found that the solubilization capacity of the micellar carrier systems increased as the total lipid concentration of the systems increased. Drug release from the sclera was significantly prolonged with the micellar carrier systems as compared to the control after passive and iontophoretic delivery. Less than ~ 20% of DEX was released from the sclera in approximately 2 hours after cathodal iontophoretic delivery of the micellar carrier systems, whereas more than ~ 50% of DEX was released from the control in the same time period under the same condition. Micellar carrier systems can be a suitable transscleral drug delivery system for poorly water soluble drugs by enhancing their aqueous solubilities and providing sustained drug delivery. These micellar carrier systems can be efficiently delivered into and across the sclera by iontophoresis for drug delivery.
PMCID: PMC3372542  PMID: 22306336
Human sclera; Dexamethasone; Mixed micelles; Simple micelles; Transscleral iontophoresis; Sustained release
19.  Chemical Method to Enhance Transungual Transport and Iontophoresis Efficiency 
Transungual transport is hindered by the inherent small effective pore size of the nail even when it is fully hydrated. The objectives of this study were to determine the effects of chemical enhancers thioglycolic acid (TGA), glycolic acid (GA), and urea (UR) on transungual transport and iontophoresis efficiency. In vitro passive and iontophoretic transport experiments of model permeants mannitol (MA), UR, and tetraethylammonium (TEA) ion across the fully hydrated, enhancer-treated and untreated human nail plates were performed in phosphate-buffered saline. The transport experiments consisted of several stages, alternating between passive and anodal iontophoretic transport at 0.1 mA. Nail water uptake experiments were conducted to determine the water content of the enhancer-treated nails. The effects of the enhancers on transungual electroosmosis were also evaluated. Nails treated with GA and UR did not show any transport enhancement. Treatment with TGA at 0.5 M enhanced passive and iontophoretic transungual transport of MA, UR, and TEA. Increasing the TGA concentration to 1.8 M did not further increase TEA iontophoresis efficiency. The effect of TGA on the nail plates was irreversible. The present study shows the possibility of using a chemical enhancer to reduce transport hindrance in the nail plate and thus enhance passive and iontophoretic transungual transport.
PMCID: PMC2603175  PMID: 18321669
Transungual iontophoresis; Human nail plate; Chemical enhancer; Thioglycolic acid; Glycolic acid; Urea
20.  Dissolving polymeric microneedle arrays for electrically assisted transdermal drug delivery 
It has recently been proposed that the combination of skin barrier impairment using microneedles (MNs) coupled with iontophoresis (ITP) may broaden the range of drugs suitable for transdermal delivery, as well as enabling the rate of delivery to be achieved with precise electronic control. However, no reports exist on the combination of ITP with in situ drug loaded polymeric MN delivery systems. Furthermore, although a number of studies have highlighted the importance of MN design for transdermal drug delivery enhancement, to date, there has been no systematic investigation of the influence of MN geometry on the performance of polymeric MN arrays which are designed to remain in contact with the skin during the period of drug delivery. As such, for the first time, this study reports on the effect of MN heigth and MN density upon the transdermal delivery of small hydrophilic compounds (theophylline, methylene blue, and fluorescein sodium) across neonatal porcine skin in vitro, with the optimised MN array design evaluated for its potential in the electrically faciliatated delivery of peptide (bovine insulin) and protein (fluorescein isothiocyanate—labelled bovine serum albumin (FTIC-BSA)) macromolecules. The results of the in vitro drug release investigations revealed that the extent of transdermal delivery was dependent upon the design of the MN array employed, whereby an increase in MN height and an increase in MN density led to an increase in the extent of transdermal drug delivery achieved 6 h after MN application. Overall, the in vitro permeation studies revealed that the MN design containing 361 MNs/cm2 of 600 μm height resulted in the greatest extent of transdermal drug delivery. As such, this design was evaluated for its potential in the MN mediated iontophoretic transdermal delivery. Whilst the combination of MN and ITP did not further enhance the extent of small molecular weight solute delivery, the extent of peptide/protein release was significantly enhanced when ITP was used in combination of the soluble PMVE/MA MN arrays. For example, the cumulative amount of insulin permeated across neonatal porcine skin at 6 h was found to be approximately 150 μg (3.25%), 227 μg (4.85%) and 462 μg (9.87%) for ITP, MN, and MN/ITP delivery strategies, respectively. Similarly, the cumulative amount of FTIC-BSA delivered across neonatal porcine skin after a 6 h period was found to be approximately 110 μg (4.53%) for MN alone and 326 μg (13.40%) for MN in combination with anodal ITP (p<0.001). As such, drug loaded soluble PMVE/MA MN arrays show promise for the electrically controlled transdermal delivery of biomacromolecules in a simple, one-step approach.
PMCID: PMC4119959  PMID: 22265694
Microneedles; Iontophoresis; Transdermal drug delivery
21.  Therapeutic Drug Monitoring By Reverse Iontophoresis 
Therapeutic molecules possessing distinct pharmacokinetic variation, narrow therapeutic index and concentration dependent therapeutic/adverse effects demand constant monitoring. The current methods for blood sampling are invasive and possess low patient compliance. Human skin, selective and effective membrane to chemical permeation, offers an alternative route for the extraction of endogenous molecules in the body. Significant attention has been received in the application of reverse iontophoresis in extracting drugs/biomaterials from the subdermal region. This technique involves transiting of a low electric current across the skin usually with couple of skin electrodes to extract charged as well as neutral molecules. Electromigration and electroosmosis are the two basic mechanisms involved in transport of molecules. Several in vitro and in vivo experiments demonstrated the potential of reverse iontophoresis as a noninvasive tool in clinical chemistry and therapeutic drug monitoring. This technology is currently being used in device such as Glucowatch Biogrpaher which allows blood glucose detection across skin layers. Advances in technology and rapid progress in research has widely improved the opportunity of this system, and the recent trend indicates that several products are likely to be developed very soon. This review provides an overview about the recent developments in reverse iontophoresis for therapeutic drug monitoring.
PMCID: PMC3979242  PMID: 24826025
Reverse iontophoresis; Therapeutic drug monitoring; Electromigration; Electroosmosis; Glucowatch
22.  Iontophoretic transdermal delivery of buspirone hydrochloride in hairless mouse skin 
AAPS PharmSci  2003;5(2):61-71.
The transdermal delivery of buspirone hydrochloride across hairless mouse skin and the combined effect of iontophoresis and terpene enhancers were evaluated in vitro using Franz diffusion cells. Iontophoretic delivery was optimized by evaluating the effect of drug concentration, current density, and pH of the vehicle solution. Increasing the current density from 0.05 to 0.1 mA/cm2 resulted in doubling of the iontophoretic flux of buspirone hydrochloride, while increasing drug concentration from 1% to 2% had no effect on flux. Using phosphate buffer to adjust the pH of the drug solution decreased the buspirone hydrochloride iontophoretic flux relative to water solutions. Incorporating buspirone hydrochloride into ethanol:water (50:50 vol/vol) based gel formulations using carboxymethylcellulose and hydroxypropylmethylcellulose had no effect on iontophoretic delivery. Incorporation of three terpene enhancers (menthol, cineole, and terpineol) into the gel and when combined with iontophoresis it was possible to deliver 10 mg/cm2/day of buspirone hydrochloride.
PMCID: PMC2751522  PMID: 12866941
iontophoresis; terpene; buspirone hydrochloride; gel; transdermal
23.  Electroosmotic flow and its contribution to iontophoretic delivery 
Analytical chemistry  2008;80(22):8635-8641.
Iontophoresis is the movement of charged molecules in solution under applied current using pulled multi-barrel glass capillaries drawn to a sharp tip. The technique is generally non-quantitative, and to address this, we have characterized the ejection of charged and neutral species using carbon-fiber electrodes attached to iontophoretic barrels. Our results show that observed ejections are due to the sum of iontophoretic and electroosmotic forces. Using the neutral, electroactive molecule 2-(4-nitrophenoxy) ethanol (NPE), which is only transported by electroosmotic flow (EOF), a positive correlation between the amount ejected and the diameter of each barrel's tip was found. In addition, using various charged and neutral electroactive compounds we found that, when each compound is paired with the EOF marker, the percentage of the ejection due to EOF remains constant. This percentage varies for each pair of compounds, and the differences in mobility are positively correlated to differences in electrophoretic mobility. Overall, the results show that capillary electrophoresis (CE) can be used to predict the percentage of ejection that will be due to EOF. With this information, quantitative iontophoresis is possible for electrochemically inactive drugs by using NPE as a marker for EOF.
PMCID: PMC2772194  PMID: 18947198
24.  Use of electroporation and reverse iontophoresis for extraction of transdermal multibiomarkers 
Monitoring of biomarkers, like urea, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), and osteopontin, is very important because they are related to kidney disease, prostate cancer, and ovarian cancer, respectively. It is well known that reverse iontophoresis can enhance transdermal extraction of small molecules, and even large molecules if reverse iontophoresis is used together with electroporation. Electroporation is the use of a high-voltage electrical pulse to create nanochannels within the stratum corneum, temporarily and reversibly. Reverse iontophoresis is the use of a small current to facilitate both charged and uncharged molecule transportation across the skin. The objectives of this in vitro study were to determine whether PSA and osteopontin are extractable transdermally and noninvasively and whether urea, PSA, and osteopontin can be extracted simultaneously by electroporation and reverse iontophoresis.
All in vitro experiments were conducted using a diffusion cell assembled with the stratum corneum of porcine skin. Three different symmetrical biphasic direct currents (SBdc), five various electroporations, and a combination of the two techniques were applied to the diffusion cell via Ag/AgCl electrodes. The three different SBdc had the same current density of 0.3 mA/cm2, but different phase durations of 0 (ie, no current, control group), 30, and 180 seconds. The five different electroporations had the same pulse width of 1 msec and number of pulses per second of 10, but different electric field strengths of 0 (ie, no voltage, control group), 74, 148, 296, and 592 V/cm. Before and after each extraction experiment, skin impedance was measured at 20 Hz.
It was found that urea could be extracted transdermally using reverse iontophoresis alone, and further enhancement of extraction could be achieved by combined use of electroporation and reverse iontophoresis. Conversely, PSA and osteopontin were found to be extracted transdermally only by use of reverse iontophoresis and electroporation with a high electrical field strength (>296 V/cm). After application of reverse iontophoresis, electroporation, or a combination of the two techniques, a reduction in skin impedance was observed.
Simultaneous transdermal extraction of urea, PSA, and osteopontin is possible only for the condition of applying reverse iontophoresis in conjunction with high electroporation.
PMCID: PMC3289445  PMID: 22393288
electroporation; reverse iontophoresis; nanochannels; noninvasive; urea; prostate-specific antigen; osteopontin
25.  Iontophoresis of dexamethasone phosphate: competition with chloride ions 
The objective was to study the competition of chloride released from a Ag/AgCl cathode on the iontophoretic delivery of dexamethasone phosphate (Dex-Phos). Iontophoresis of Dex-Phos was performed in side-by-side diffusion cells (0.78 cm2) using pig skin. A 0.3 mA constant current was applied via Ag/AgCl electrodes. The amounts of Dex-Phos and dexamethasone (Dex) were also quantified in the stratum corneum (SC), using tape stripping, after passive and iontophoretic delivery. The profiles of Dex-Phos and Dex, as a function of position in the SC, were deduced. The iontophoretic delivery of Dex-Phos from pure water was unaffected by the accumulation of Cl− released by the donor cathode when the drug’s concentration was 4.25 mM to 17 mM. At 0.85 mM, however, Cl− competition was significant and the drug flux was significantly reduced. Formulation of the drug in the presence of Cl− resulted in a non-linear dependence of flux on the molar fraction of the drug. Tape stripping experiments confirmed the enhanced delivery of Dex-Phos by iontophoresis relative to passive diffusion, with Dex-Phos concentration greater inside the barrier post-iontophoresis than that in the donor. The latter observation could explain the robustness of Dex-Phos delivery to the presence of Cl− in the donor solution.
PMCID: PMC2574231  PMID: 18662729
iontophoresis; skin; transport number; dexamethasone phosphate

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