In case of many nasopharyngeal diseases, such as otitis media, acute and chronic sinusitis and pharyngitis, patients frequently resort to self-medication using over-the-counter products. Often, clinical data is lacking to support the use of decongestive, expectorantia or nasal salt solutions and relapse is frequent. On the other hand, (ab)use of antibiotics is linked with the resistance-issue. Main idea of this project is that local buccal or nasal sprays or lozenges, in which Lactobacillus species are formulated, could enhance the existing therapies. Many nose and throat disease conditions also show a microbial imbalance between enhanced numbers of pathogenic microbes versus decreased number of beneficial macrobiotics. Ultimately, dosage forms containing
probiotics might be the preferred upper-airway-therapy over antibiotics-usage. In this project, fundamental formulation and process research will be conducted, to support and in preparation of (pre)clinical studies. The application of spray drying as innovative manufacturing technology for probiotic dosage forms, has many advantages such as excellent control over process parameters and over powder characteristics. The lyophilization-technology is applied as the reference drying technique.
The influence of excipients and additives in the formulation will be investigated. They might have a protective effect during the processing, as well as during stability and at moment of reconstitution into the final dosage form. Secondly they will determine the powder particle properties, important for lozenge-formulation. Finally, their effect on adhesion of the formulation to bucal epithelial cells , might be advantageous in terms of local residence time and efficacy . Probiotic cell viability is evaluated in function of the
spray drying process parameters. Final goal of this project is a buccal lozenge containing probiotics, having a sufficient efficacy
and stability. This project fits perfectly in an on-going IOF-SBO program in collaboration with the UA research lab of Prof. Dr.
Sarah Lebeer (Bio-engineering Sciences).