Formation of multilayered biopolymer microcapsules and microparticles in a multiphase microfluidic flow

Elisabeth Rondeau, Justin J. Cooper-White

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12 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reports the development of a scalable continuous microfluidic-based method for the preparation of multilayered biopolymer microcapsules and microparticles, with a size range of 1 to 100 μm, in a single-layered polydimethylsiloxane-based device. This new approach has been utilised to produce polyethylene oxide (PEO)-based microparticles, layered with subsequent stage wise coatings of polylactide-based block copolymers and polyvinylpyrrolidone. The production process was shown to allow for on-chip encapsulation of protein and vitamin molecules in the biopolymer micro particles, without any further handling after collection from the device. We have studied the release profiles in the case of model molecules of distinctive molecular weights, namely, vitronectin, horse radish peroxidase, and vitamin B12. We compared the release properties of the microparticles to those from macro-gels of the same materials prepared off-chip. The results indicated that the microparticles have definitively different molecular weight cut-off characteristics, likely due to a denser microstructure within the microparticles compared to the bulk hydrogels. This difference suggests that significant benefits may exist in the use of this method to produce layered biopolymer microparticles in achieving improved controlled release and encapsulation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number024125
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 26 Apr 2012
Externally publishedYes

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