A reversible switchable on-demand UV-triggered drug delivery system (DDS) based on interpenetrating polymer networks (IPNs) with silicone as the host polymer and spiropyran (SP)-functionalized guest polymer is designed and demonstrated. The photo-responsive IPNs provide a new triggered drug delivery concept as they exploit the change in intermolecular interactions (work of adhesion) among the drug, matrix, and solvent when the incorporated hydrophobic SP moieties transform into the hydrophilic merocyanine form upon light irradiation without degradation and disruption of the DDS. The change in how the copolymer composition (hydrophilicity and content) and the lipophilicity of the drug (log P) affect the release profile was investigated. A thermodynamic model, based on Hansen solubility parameters, was developed to design and optimize the polymer composition of the IPNs to obtain the most efficient light-triggered drug release and suppression of the premature release. The developed IPNs showed excellent result for dopamine, l-dopa, and prednisone with around 90-95% light-triggered release. The model was applied to study the release behavior of drugs with different log P and to estimate if the light-induced hydrophobic-to-hydrophilic switch can overcome the work of adhesion between polymers and drugs and hence the desorption and release of the drugs. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that work of adhesion is used for this aim. Comparing the result obtained from the model and experiment shows that the model is useful for evaluating and estimating the release behavior of specific drugs merocyanine, IPN, DDS, and spiropyran.
- Drug delivery system
- Interpenetrating polymer networks
- Hydrophobicity switch