Oral Delivery of Puerarin Nanocrystals To Improve Brain Accumulation and Anti-Parkinsonian Efficacy.
Mol Pharm. 2019 Apr 1 ;16(4):1444-1455. Epub 2019 Mar 6. PMID: 30811206
Puerarin (PU) has emerged as a promising herb-derived anti-Parkinsonism compound. However, the undesirable water solubility as well as the unwanted bioavailability of PU limit its application. Therefore, this study aimed to develop and characterize PU nanocrystals (PU-NCs) with enhanced oral bioavailability and improved brain accumulation for the treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD). The fabricated PU-NCs were approximately spherical, with a mean size of 83.05± 1.96 nm, a PDI of 0.047 ± 0.009, a drug loading of 72.7%, and a rapid dissolution rate in vitro. Molecular dynamics simulation of PU and Pluronic F68 demonstrated the interaction energy and binding energy of -88.1 kJ/mol and -40.201 ± 0.685 kJ/mol, respectively, indicating a spontaneous bindingwith van der Waals interactions. In addition, the cellular uptake and permeability of PU-NCs were significantly enhanced as compared to PU alone ( p<0.01). Moreover, PU-NCs exerted a significant neuroprotective effect against the cellular damage induced by the 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP). Besides, PU-NCs demonstrated no obvious toxic effects on zebrafish, as evidenced by the unaltered morphology, hatching, survival rate, body length, and heart rate. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) imaging revealed that intact nanocrystals were found in the intestine and brain of adult zebrafish gavaged with DiO/DiI/PU-NCs. Increased values of Cand AUCwere observed in the plasma of rats following oral administration of PU-NCs compared to PU suspension. Likewise, brain accumulation of PU-NCs was higher than that of PU suspension. Furthermore, PU-NCs attenuated dopamine depletion, ameliorated 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced behavioral deficits, and enhanced the levels of dopamine and its metabolites. Taken altogether, this study provides evidence that PU-NCs could be exploited as a potential oral delivery system to treat PD, by improving the poor bioavailability of PU and enhancing their delivery into the brain.