Synthesis of Porous Microspheres and Nanoparticles for Biomedical Applications Using Simple Microfluidic Device

Benzion Amoyav Ofra Benny
School of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

Microfluidics technology offers a new platform to control liquids under flow in small volumes. The advantage of using small-scale reactions for droplet generation along with the capacity to control the parameters, making microfluidic chips an attractive technology for optimizing encapsulation formulations. However, one of the drawback in this regards is the ability to obtain a wide range of droplet sizes, from sub-micron to microns using a single chip design. In fact, typically droplet chips are used for micron-dimension particles, while nanoparticles synthesis requires complex chips design (i.e microreactors, staggered herringbone micromixer). Here we introduce the development of a highly tunable and controlled synthesis technique for particles ranging from microns to nano-size using the same a simple single microfluidic chip design. Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA 50:50)/Polyethylene glycol (PEG) polymeric particles were prepared with focused-flow chip, yielding various shape and size of particle batches. We show that by varying flow rates, solvents and polymers type we are able to optimize the particles’ size and decrease polydispersity index, using simple chip designs with no further related adjustments or costs. Utilizing this newly developed platform, which offers tight tuning of particle properties, could offer an important tool for various biomedical applications can potentially pave the way toward a better precision nanomedicine.

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