Manufacturing considerations for the development of lipid nanoparticles using microfluidics

Roces, Carla B. and Lou, Gustavo and Jain, Nikita and Abraham, Suraj and Thomas, Anitha and Halbert, Gavin W. and Perrie, Yvonne (2020) Manufacturing considerations for the development of lipid nanoparticles using microfluidics. Pharmaceutics, 12 (11). 1095. ISSN 1999-4923

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    In the recent of years, the use of lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) for RNA delivery has gained considerable attention, with a large number in the clinical pipeline as vaccine candidates or to treat a wide range of diseases. Microfluidics offers considerable advantages for their manufacture due to its scalability, reproducibility and fast preparation. Thus, in this study, we have evaluated operating and formulation parameters to be considered when developing LNPs. Among them, the flow rate ratio (FRR) and the total flow rate (TFR) have been shown to significantly influence the physicochemical characteristics of the produced particles. In particular, increasing the TFR or increasing the FRR decreased the particle size. The amino lipid choice (cationic—DOTAP and DDAB; ionisable—MC3), buffer choice (citrate buffer pH 6 or TRIS pH 7.4) and type of nucleic acid payload (PolyA, ssDNA or mRNA) have also been shown to have an impact on the characteristics of these LNPs. LNPs were shown to have a high (>90%) loading in all cases and were below 100 nm with a low polydispersity index (≤0.25). The results within this paper could be used as a guide for the development and scalable manufacture of LNP systems using microfluidics.