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Open AccessArticle

The Impact of the Ionic Cross-Linking Mode on the Physical and In Vitro Dexamethasone Release Properties of Chitosan/Hydroxyapatite Beads

1
Postgraduate Program in Materials Science and Engineering, Department of Materials Engineering, Federal University of Campina Grande, Campina Grande, PB 58429-900, Brazil
2
Department of Materials Engineering, Federal University of Campina Grande, Campina Grande, PB 58429-900, Brazil
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Qun Wang
Molecules 2019, 24(24), 4510; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24244510
Received: 15 October 2019 / Revised: 29 October 2019 / Accepted: 1 November 2019 / Published: 10 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Macromolecules for Medicine)
In this study, the effect of the ionic cross-linking mode on the ability to control physical properties and in vitro release behavior of the dexamethasone (DEX) drug from chitosan (CS) and chitosan/hydroxyapatite (CS/HA) beads was investigated. CS solutions without and with HA and DEX were dripped into two coagulation solutions, prepared with a non-toxic ionic crosslinker (sodium tripolyphosphate, TPP) and distilled water, one at pH = 9.0 and other at pH = 6.0. Optical microscopy (OM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) results showed changes on the surface topology of the beads, with a reduction of roughness for beads prepared at pH = 6.0 and an increase for the one prepared at pH = 9.0. The diameter and sphericity of the beads prepared at pH = 6.0 proved more uniform and had a larger pore size with a good interconnectivity framework. Attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) suggested a higher crosslinking degree for beads prepared at pH = 6.0, corroborated by X-ray diffraction profiles (XRD) analysis that indicated a decrease in the crystalline structure for such beads. In in vitro drug release data, all beads presented a sustained release during the studied period (24 h). The drug release rate was affected by the pH of the coagulation solution used in the preparation of the beads. The in vitro kinetics of the release process was of the Peppas–Sahlin model, controlled by both diffusion and relaxation of polymer chains or swelling (anomalous transport mechanism). Our results suggest that DEX-loaded CS/HA beads, crosslinked in TPP coagulation solution at pH = 9.0, led to a decrease in the DEX release rate and prolonged the release period. Thus, this composition might have prospective as a functional material for bone and cartilage tissue engineering. View Full-Text
Keywords: beads; chitosan; hydroxyapatite; dexamethasone; ionic cross-linking beads; chitosan; hydroxyapatite; dexamethasone; ionic cross-linking
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MDPI and ACS Style

L. Dantas, M.J.; F. dos Santos, B.F.; A. Tavares, A.; Maciel, M.A.; Lucena, B.M.; L. Fook, M.V.; de L. Silva, S.M. The Impact of the Ionic Cross-Linking Mode on the Physical and In Vitro Dexamethasone Release Properties of Chitosan/Hydroxyapatite Beads. Molecules 2019, 24, 4510.

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