Probucol-Ursodeoxycholic Acid Otic Formulations: Stability and In Vitro Assessments for Hearing Loss Treatment

Corina M. Ionescu, Bozica Kovacevic, Melissa A. Jones, Susbin R. Wagle, Thomas Foster, Momir Mikov, Armin Mooranian, Hani Al-Salami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Targeted drug delivery is an ongoing aspect of scientific research that is expanding through the design of micro- and nanoparticles. In this paper, we focus on spray dried microparticles as carriers for a repurposed lipophilic antioxidant (probucol). We characterise the microparticles and quantify probucol prior to assessing cytotoxicity on both control and cisplatin treated hair cells (known as House Ear Institute-Organ of Corti 1; HEI-OC1). The addition of water-soluble polymers to 2% β-cyclodextrin resulted in a stable probucol formulation. Ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) used as formulation excipient increases probucol miscibility and microparticle drug content. Formulation characterisations reveals spray drying results in spherical UDCA-drug microparticles with a mean size distribution of ∼5–12 μm. Probucol microparticles show stable short-term storage conditions accounting for only ∼10% loss over seven days. By mimicking cell culture conditions, both UDCA-probucol (67%) and probucol only (82%) microparticles show drug release in the initial two hours. Furthermore, probucol formulations with or without UDCA preserve cell viability and reduce cisplatin-induced oxidative stress. Mitochondrial bioenergetics results in lower basal respiration and non-mitochondrial respiration, with higher maximal respiration, spare capacity, ATP production and proton leak within cisplatin challenged UDCA-probucol groups. Overall, we present a facile method for incorporating lipophilic antioxidant carriers in polymer-based particles that are tolerated by HEI-OC1 cells and show stable drug release, sufficient in reducing cisplatin-induced reactive oxygen species accumulation.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 9 May 2024


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