Development of Novel Microemulsion-Based Topical Formulations of Acyclovir for the Treatment of Cutaneous Herpetic Infections
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The present investigation aims at developing microemulsion-based formulations for topical delivery of acyclovir. Various microemulsions were developed using isopropyl myristate/Captex 355/Labrafac as an oil phase, Tween 20 as surfactant, Span 20 as cosurfactant, and water/dimethylsulfoxide (1:3) as an aqueous phase. Transcutol, eucalyptus oil, and peppermint oil were used as permeation enhancers. In vitro permeation studies through laca mice skin were performed using Franz diffusion cells. The optimum formulation containing 2.5% Transcutol as the penetration enhancer showed 1.7-fold enhancement in flux and permeation coefficient as compared to marketed cream and ointment formulation. In vivo antiviral studies were performed in female Balb/c mice against induced herpes simplex virus I infection. A single application of microemulsion formulation containing 2.5% Transcutol given 24 h post-injection resulted in complete suppression of development of herpetic skin lesions.
KEY WORDSacyclovir antiviral herpes simplex virus microemulsion topical
The authors gratefully acknowledge the gift sample of ACV supplied by Arochem Industries (Mumbai, India), Captex 355 EP/NF (Abitec Corporation, UK), and Labrafac CC and Transcutol (Colorcon Asia Pvt. Ltd., India). Authors also thank Prof. Radha Kanta Ratho (Head) and Assistant Prof. Mini P. Singh, Department of Virology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India for their help and guidance and for providing laboratory facilities for antiviral studies.
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