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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(12), 24670-24691; doi:10.3390/ijms141224670
Article

Synthesis, Characterisation, and Evaluation of a Cross-Linked Disulphide Amide-Anhydride-Containing Polymer Based on Cysteine for Colonic Drug Delivery

1,* , 2
 and 3,*
1 Integrative Medicine Cluster, Advanced Medical and Dental Institute, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Bertam, 13200 Kepala Batas, Penang, Malaysia 2 Discipline of Pharmaceutical Technology, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Penang, Malaysia 3 Faculty of Pharmacy, UiTM Puncak Alam Campus, Bandar Puncak Alam, 42300 Selangor, Malaysia
* Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 October 2013 / Revised: 6 December 2013 / Accepted: 11 December 2013 / Published: 18 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Section Bioinorganic Chemistry)
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Abstract

The use of disulphide polymers, a low redox potential responsive delivery, is one strategy for targeting drugs to the colon so that they are specifically released there. The objective of this study was to synthesise a new cross-linked disulphide-containing polymer based on the amino acid cysteine as a colon drug delivery system and to evaluate the efficiency of the polymers for colon targeted drug delivery under the condition of a low redox potential. The disulphide cross-linked polymers were synthesised via air oxidation of 1,2-ethanedithiol and 3-mercapto-N-2-(3-mercaptopropionamide)-3-mercapto propionic anhydride (trithiol monomers) using different ratio combinations. Four types of polymers were synthesised: P10, P11, P151, and P15. All compounds synthesised were characterised by NMR, IR, LC-MS, CHNS analysis, Raman spectrometry, SEM-EDX, and elemental mapping. The synthesised polymers were evaluated in chemical reduction studies that were performed in zinc/acetic acid solution. The suitability of each polymer for use in colon-targeted drug delivery was investigated in vitro using simulated conditions. Chemical reduction studies showed that all polymers were reduced after 0.5–1.0 h, but different polymers had different thiol concentrations. The bacterial degradation studies showed that the polymers were biodegraded in the anaerobic colonic bacterial medium. Degradation was most pronounced for polymer P15. This result complements the general consensus that biodegradability depends on the swellability of polymers in an aqueous environment. Overall, these results suggest that the cross-linked disulphide-containing polymers described herein could be used as coatings for drugs delivered to the colon.
Keywords: disulphide cross-linked polymer; synthesis; colon drug delivery; amide-anhydride; cysteine disulphide cross-linked polymer; synthesis; colon drug delivery; amide-anhydride; cysteine
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Lim, V.; Peh, K.K.; Sahudin, S. Synthesis, Characterisation, and Evaluation of a Cross-Linked Disulphide Amide-Anhydride-Containing Polymer Based on Cysteine for Colonic Drug Delivery. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 24670-24691.

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