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Article / May 06, 2021

Dry powder inhaler formulation of Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase by spray drying: A proof-of-concept

  • Diana A. Fernandes
  • Paula Leandro
  • Eunice Costa
  • Luisa Corvo
Powder Technology, May 6, 2021

Despite the advantages of targeting the pulmonary route through Dry Powder Inhalers (DPIs), the efficient delivery of biologics to the lungs still presents a considerable challenge: the generation of a powder with adequate aerodynamic properties while preserving the integrity of the biol. Hence, the particle engineering technol. employed to meet this balance plays a pivotal role. The present work describes a proof-of-concept study to investigate the effect of spray drying (SD) outlet temperature (Tout), atomization flow rate (Rotatom) and feed flow rate (Ffeed) on powder properties such as particle morphol. and aerodynamic performance but also on the enzyme activity and protein conformational stability of a trehalose:leucine spray-dried powder featuring Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase (Cu,Zn-SOD). This enzyme, often implicated in a broad spectrum of oxidative stress related diseases, from cystic fibrosis to rheumatoid arthritis, was used as a model Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API). Morphol. and aerodynamic performance of the SD powders were determined by SEM (SEM), focused ion beam - SEM, laser diffraction and Andersen Cascade Impaction. For each SD run, enzyme activity retention (EAR) was measured by spectrophotometry and the protein melting temperature by differential scanning fluorimetry. To further understand the interaction between input and output variables, a statistical anal. was performed using SIMCA v13.0.3.0 software. Cu,Zn-SOD:trehalose:leucine spray dried powders were successfully generated upon different processing conditions, displaying fine particle fractions of ≈60% and EAR ranging from 50-80% with no loss of protein conformational stability. This technol. thus proved to be suitable to prepare Cu,Zn-SOD based DPI powders within the considered working ranges.