Pharmacokinetic and Pharmacodynamic Evaluation of a Nanotechnological Topical Formulation of Lidocaine/Prilocaine (Nanorap) in Healthy Volunteers

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Nanorap is a new nanotechnological formulation for topical anesthesia composed of lidocaine (2.5%) and prilocaine (2.5%). This study evaluated the pharmacokinetics of Nanorap. For the determination of lidocaine and prilocaine in human plasma, a new method using high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry was developed. Nanorap pharmacodynamic (PD) and its physical proprieties were also evaluated.


Nanorap was administered by topical application of 2 g to healthy volunteers, and blood samples were collected for the pharmacokinetics analysis. The drugs were extracted from plasma by liquid–liquid extraction with ether/hexane (80/20, vol/vol). The chromatography separation was performed on a Genesis C18 analytical column 4 μm (100 × 2.1 mm i.d.) with a mobile phase of methanol/acetonitrile/water (40/30/30, for lidocaine, and 50/30/20, for prilocaine, vol/vol/vol) + 2 mM of ammonium acetate and ropivacaine as internal standard. The drugs were quantified using a mass spectrometer with an electrospray source in the electrospray ionization positive mode configured for multiple reaction monitoring. The PD of Nanorap was evaluated with the use of a visual analog scale. Nanorap was characterized by cryofracture.


The chromatography run-time was 5.5 minutes for lidocaine and 3.3 minutes for prilocaine, and the lower limit of quantification was 0.05 ng/mL for both drugs. Mean Cmax was 6.62 and 1.72 ng/mL for lidocaine and prilocaine, respectively. Median Tmax was 6.5 hours for both drugs. Nanocapsules had a mean size of 88 nm and mean drug association of 92.5% and 89% for lidocaine and prilocaine, respectively. The PD study showed that Nanorap has a sufficient analgesic effect (>30% reduction in pain) after 10 minutes of application.


A new simple, selective, and sensitive method for determination of lidocaine and prilocaine in human plasma was developed. Nanorap generated safe plasma levels of the drugs and satisfactory analgesic effect.

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