Long-term storage of PEGylated liposomal oxaliplatin with improved stability and long circulation times in vivo.

Int J Pharm 2019 Jun 16;564:237-243. Epub 2019 Apr 16.

Department of Pharmacokinetics and Biopharmaceutics, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University, 1-78-1, Sho-machi, Tokushima 770-8505, Japan. Electronic address:

Liposomal anticancer drugs have been developed with improved clinical effects and reduced side effects. We have developed a PEGylated liposomal formulation of oxaliplatin that has anticancer effects in animal models of colorectal cancer with a favorable toxicity profile. To move this formulation into clinical development, a formulation that is stable during long term storage is needed, which has similar pharmacokinetics and therapeutic activity against solid tumors to the original formulation. In this study, we found that PEGylated liposomal oxaliplatin showed no changes in particle size after long term storage (12 months at 2-8 °C), but phospholipid degradation had occurred. Hence, the stored formulation had compromised membrane integrity, resulting in decreased in vivo circulation times of the liposomes. To improve the stability during long-term storage, a screening study to obtain an appropriate stabilizer was carried out. The buffer 2-morpholinoethansulfonic acid (MES) attenuated not only phospholipid degradation but also oxaliplatin degradation, unlike most other excipients. After 12 months storage at 2-8 °C in the presence of MES only slight degradation of phospholipids in PEGylated liposomal oxaliplatin occurred, resulting in similar in vivo pharmacokinetic profiles of the encapsulated oxaliplatin to the original formulation. Long term stability of PEGylated liposomal oxaliplatin was achieved by addition of MES, resulting in long circulation half-lives in vivo, a property which would be expected to lead to increased suppression of tumor growth and reduced side effects. Our formulation may now be suitable for clinical development.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpharm.2019.04.042DOI Listing

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June 2019

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