Photocrosslinkable polyanhydrides that undergo surface erosion are suitable materials for controlled-release drug delivery systems. Investigating the impact of different parameters on their erosion behavior is essential before use in drug delivery systems. Although their synthesis is well-established, parameters that may substantially affect the erosion of thiol-ene polyanhydrides including temperature and pH of the media, the geometry of the polymers, and the media shaking rate (the convective force for the polymer erosion), have not yet been studied. This study explores the effects of different environmental and geometric parameters on mass loss (erosion) profiles of polyanhydrides synthesized by thiol-ene photopolymerization. A comparative study on several release kinetic models fitting is also described for a better understanding of the polymer erosion behavior. The results demonstrated that although the temperature was the only parameter that affected the induction period substantially, the mass-loss rate was influenced by the polymer composition, tablet geometry, temperature, pH, and mass transfer (shaking) rate. With regard to geometrical parameters, polymers with the same surface area to volume ratios showed similar mass loss trends despite their various volumes and surface areas. The mass loss of polyanhydride tablets with more complicated geometries than a simple slab was shown to be non-linear, and the kinetic model study indicated the dominant surface erosion mechanism. The results of this study allow for designing and manufacturing efficient delivery systems with a high-predictable drug release required in precision medicine using surface-erodible polyanhydrides.
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