Formulation and evaluation of a novel cubosomal emulgel for topical delivery of luliconazole
Abstract: Despite numerous remarkable developments in clinical therapy, the world remains firmly in the grip of fungal infections. While conventional approaches to antifungal therapy are failing, dermatophytes continue to affect people’s daily lives, especially in humid and tropical areas, and pose a major medical problem. Cubosomes, the liquid crystalline nanostructures, are among the recently developed lipid nanoparticles that could potentially overcome the hurdles of conventional therapy. In the present study, cubosomes containing luliconazole, an antifungal drug, were formulated to overcome the limitation of poor water solubility and poor bioavailability of the drug for the main purpose of treating fungal infections. Various formulations of luliconazole loaded cubosomes were prepared with different ratios of lipid (glyceryl monooleate) and surfactant (poloxamer 407) using emulsification method. The prepared formulations were optimised and the optimised cubosomal dispersion was loaded into a carbomer-934 gel to form an emulsifying gel. All cubosomal dispersions had particle sizes ranging from 124 nm to 221.1 nm, optimal zeta potential and polydispersity index, and were found to be stable. The drug entrapment efficiency of the cubosomes was over 90%. The in vitro diffusion study showed that the developed formulation had a higher release rate than the marketed formulation. The in vitro antifungal activity study confirmed that the prepared emulsion formulation was also effective against Candida albicans. The novel drug delivery system developed in this study, the cubosomal emulgel, could thus be a favourable approach for the topical delivery of luliconazole for the treatment of fungal infections.
Keywords: antifungal activity / cubosomes / emulgel / luliconazole / topical treatment
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