Avidin/biotin-liposome system injected in the pleural space for drug delivery to mediastinal lymph nodes

Luis A. Medina, Sergio M. Calixto, Robert Klipper, William T. Phillips, Beth Goins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to develop a more effective liposome-based method for delivering drugs to mediastinal nodes. Nodal uptake was determined after intrapleural injection of the avidin/biotin-liposome system in normal rats. The effect of injection sequence (avidin injected 2 h before biotin-liposomes and vice versa), volume injected, and administered dose of the agents is described. Pharmacokinetics of the avidin/biotin-liposome system was monitored with scintigraphic imaging by labeling the biotin-liposomes with technetium-99m (99mTc). To identify the nodes during the biodistribution studies, patent blue dye was encapsulated in the biotin-liposomes. Tissue biodistribution studies were performed 22 h after injection of the 99mTc-blue-biotin-liposomes. When avidin was injected before 99mTc-blue-biotin-liposomes, better mediastinal node targeting (15.7%; p < 0.05) was achieved than when biotin-liposomes were injected first (8.3%) or when only biotin-liposomes were injected (1.0%). Injection of a small dose of liposomes (0.5 mg phospholipid) and avidin (0.5 mg) resulted in the most favorable drug delivery to mediastinal nodes and other organs. Intrapleural injection of the avidin/biotin-liposome system could potentially be used for drug delivery to disease processes such as lung cancer, anthrax, and tuberculosis that invade mediastinal nodes and use them as centers of incubation and dissemination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2595-2608
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2004


  • Drug targeting
  • Liposomes
  • Lymphatic transport
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Scintigraphy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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