NanoVIP (2005-2009) BII-253
Nanoparticulate delivery systems for pulmonary lung therapy



The goal of this research project is to develop an innovative and non-invasive inhalable delivery system utilizing “intelligent” nanostructured materials to deliver a peptide-based drug to the lung. In order to achieve this, several nanostructured particles and technologies have to be evaluated.


During the first phase of the project, several partners within the RPC Nano-Health are focusing their efforts on the development of different nanoparticles suitable to the delivery of VIP - a peptide based drug - to the deep lung area and its subsequent slow release. First, we have concentrated our approach on liposomes and protamine based particulate delivery systems. For this purpose we have designed several VIP´s and also derivatives with fluorescent labels or lipophilic or ionic charged moieties to load and characterize the stability and the release properties of these loaded particles.

Together with our project partners IBR and ICR-ESA, we have prepared several liposomal systems and investigated their physico-chemical properties. In-vitro assays for vasorelaxation have been performed and have generated preliminary positive results. At this point, it seems that liposomes could be a good delivery system for lung therapy.

Protamine based nanoparticles have also been prepared by IPS and the loading with VIP is in progress. Characterization and release studies will be performed as soon as all analytical methods are well established.

Besides the project coordination and dissemination of data, piCHEM has designed and produced a considerable number of different VIP derivatives needed for loading these two nanoparticle systems and to evaluate the loading efficacy and stability. We have also developed a method for investigating the stability of VIP in BAL (Broncho alveolar lavage) in order to check the stability of new derivatives. Also, other chemical substances needed in other projects within  RPC have been produced. The development of different analytical methods for the determination of loading, release and biostability is under investigation and will be finished during the next reporting period. We also plan to focus on open questions and some improvements that are necessary to both delivery systems as soon as this first set of experiments is finished. Additionally, the investigation on thiolated delivery systems will be initiated in the next period. This delivery system is postponed due to the intensive investigation of the other particle systems.