The aim of this study was to investigate the potential of human serum albumin (HSA) as a solubilising agent/drug delivery vehicle for pulmonary administration of antimycobacterial benzothiazinone (BTZ) compounds. The solubility of four novel BTZ compounds (IR 20, IF 274, FG 2, AR 112) was enhanced 2 to 140-fold by incubation with albumin (0.38-134 μg/mL). Tryptophan 213 residue quenching studies indicated moderate binding strength to Sudlow’s site I. Nanoparticle manufacture achieved 37-60% encapsulation efficiency in HSA particles (169 nm, zeta potential -31 mV). Drug release was triggered by proteases with >50% released in 4 h. The antimycobacterial activity of IR 20 and FG 2 loaded in HSA nanoparticles was enhanced compared to DMSO/phosphate buffered saline (PBS) or albumin/PBS solutions in an in vitro M. tuberculosis-infected macrophage model. Intranasal instillation was used to achieve pulmonary delivery daily over 10 days to M. tuberculosis infected mice for FG2 HSA nanoparticles (0.4 mg/kg), FG 2 DMSO/saline (0.4 and 8 mg/kg) and a reference compound, BTZ043, DMSO/saline (0.4 and 8 mg/kg). A lower lung M. tuberculosis burden was apparent for all BTZ cohorts, but only significant for BTZ043 at both doses. In conclusion, mechanisms of HSA nanoparticle loading and release of BTZ compounds were demonstrated, enhanced antimycobacterial activity of the nanoparticle formulations was demonstrated in a biorelevant in vitro bioassay and the effectiveness of BTZ by pulmonary delivery in vivo was established with pilot evidence for effectiveness when delivered by HSA nanoparticles. Finally, the feasibility of developing an inhaled nanoparticle-in-microparticle powder formulation was ascertained.
Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier B.V.