Development of a biodegradable subcutaneous implant containing acyclovir for the long-term suppression of hsv-1 reoccurrences


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Towson University. Department of Biological Sciences


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Herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1) is a ubiquitous human pathogen that is usually associated with causing lesions on the dermal epithelium. Acyclovir (ACV) is commonly used to treat initial infections and suppress reactivations. Due to acyclovir's low oral bioavailability, HSV-1-infected individuals need multiple daily doses of the drug. An ideal alternative to oral delivery would be to design a long term drug delivery system that is subject to biodegradation. This study aims to construct a biodegradable implant using polycaprolactone (PCL) for the long-term delivery of ACV. A series of implants were constructed with different polymer: drug ratios (60:40, 65:35, 70:30, and 75:25) and in vitro studies were conducted to determine which ratio exhibits the best antiviral activity. The implant's release kinetics of ACV under various temperatures (4C, 25C, and 37C) and pH (6, 7, and 8) was examined. We found that temperature, but not pH had a significant effect on release kinetics.