Enhancement of nose-to-brain delivery of hydrophilic macromolecules with stearate- or polyethylene glycol-modified arginine-rich peptide

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Recently, nose-to-brain delivery is a highly versatile route, which, in combination with novel drugs being developed for treating intractable CNS diseases, is a promising approach for the treatment of disorders. Furthermore, nano-sized drug carriers may improve nose-to-brain drug delivery by their capability to increase the transmucosal penetration of the drugs across nasal mucosal tissue barrier. However, there is still not enough information regarding mechanism of absorption pathway from nasal cavity to brain using nanocarriers. In this study, to investigate the nose-to-brain transport pathway using nanocarriers, the distribution in whole brain, nasal mucosa, and trigeminal nerve after intranasal administration of two kinds of nanocarriers which have hydrophobic or hydrophilic moiety. We used CHHRRRRHHC peptide (CH2R4H2C) as basic peptide carriers, and modified with stearic acid (STR) as a hydrophobic moiety (STR-CH2R4H2C) or polyethylene glycol (PEG)-based block copolymer (PEG-PCL) as hydrophilic moiety (PEG-PCL-CH2R4H2C). The nose-to-brain drug delivery can be improved by using STR-CH2R4H2C and PEG-PCL-CH2R4H2C as carriers. Specifically, hydrophobic STR-CH2R4H2C is more suitable for the transport of drugs targeting the forebrain, while PEG-PCL-modified CH2R4H2C is more suitable for transporting drugs targeting the hindbrain or whole brain tissue. In conclusion, the results of this study support the possibility that drug delivery pathways can be controlled depending on the properties of different carrier complexes.

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