The biocompatibility and the metabolic impact of thermoresponsive, bile acid-based nanogels on auditory and macrophage cell lines

Bozica Kovacevic, Susbin Raj Wagle, Corina Mihaela Ionescu, Thomas Foster, Maja Đanić, Momir Mikov, Armin Mooranian, Hani Al-Salami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Deoxycholic acid (DCA), lithocholic acid (LCA), and ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) are bile acids that may serve as permeation enhancers when incorporated within the nanogel matrix for drug delivery in the inner ear. In this study, thermoresponsive nanogels were formulated with DCA, LCA and UDCA and their rheological properties and biocompatibility were assessed. The impact of nanogel on cellular viability was evaluated via cell viability assay, the impact of nanogels on cellular bioenergetic parameters was estimated by Seahorse mito-stress test and glycolysis-stress test, while the presence of intracellular free radicals was assessed by reactive oxygen species assay. Nanogels showed a high level of biocompatibility after 24-hour exposure to auditory and macrophage cell lines, with minimal cytotoxicity compared to untreated control. Incubation with nanogels did not alter cellular respiration and glycolysis of the auditory cell line but showed possible mitochondrial dysfunction in macrophages, suggesting tissue-dependent effects of bile acids. Bile acid-nanogels had minimal impact on intracellular reactive oxygen species, with LCA demonstrating the most pro-oxidative behaviour. This study suggests that thermoresponsive nanogels with bile acid, particularly DCA and UDCA, may be promising candidates for inner ear drug delivery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-257
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023

Cite this