Microcontainers are micrometer-sized cylindrical reservoir-based devices serving as drug carriers for oral administration systems with ensuring a high drug concentration at the desired site of absorption and providing a sustained resident time. These polymeric micro-cylinders consist of drug-filled cavities and can be functionalized by sealing with polymeric lids to protect the active pharmaceutical ingredient against degradation before reaching the absorption site. The present study aimed to develop biopolymer-based lids for microcontainers using polysaccharides for the prolonged release of an antibiotic. Amoxicillin was chosen as a model drug and loaded into microcontainers using the polydimethylsiloxane masking technique, followed by spray coating with chitosan (CS) and chondroitin sulfate (ChS) as polymeric lids onto the cavity of the devices. The structural and physicochemical properties of the microcontainers were investigated. Moreover, the effect of polysaccharide-based lids on the drug release behavior was further analysed and discussed. The thickness and morphology of the lids were characterized by profilometry and SEM before and after spray coating. The in vitro release profiles revealed a fast and an immediate release of amoxicillin from only ChS-coated microcontainers as in the uncoated ones, and slow, prolonged release from only CS-coated ones. However, the microcontainers with CS-ChS lids showed a biphasic release pattern that consists of a lesser burst release in the early stage of treatment, followed by a more sustained release. Therefore, the formation of polyelectrolytes between CS and ChS plays an important role in controlling the release process. The results suggest that the CS-ChS based lids for microcontainers can be useful in biodegradable, tailor-made controlled drug delivery systems.Keywords: Microdevices, polysaccharide lids, spray coating, drug delivery, sustained release
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