Mathematical models for estimating effective diffusion parameters of spherical drug delivery devices
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Mathematical modeling of drug delivery is of increasing academic and industrial importance in manyaspects. In this paper, we propose an optimization approach for the estimation of the parameters characterizing the diffusion process of a drug from a spherical porous polymer device to an external finite volume. The approach is based on a nonlinear least-squares method and a novel mathematical model which takes into consideration both boundary layer effect and initial burst phenomenon. Ananalytical solution to the model is derived and a formula for the ratio of the mass released in a given time interval and the total mass released in infinite time is also obtained. The approach has been tested using experimental data of the diffusion of prednisolone 21-hemisuccinate sodium saltfrom spherical devices made of porous poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) hydrogels. The effectiveness and accuracy of the method are well demonstrated by the numerical results. The model was used to determine the diffusion parameters including the effective diffusion coefficient of the drug from a series of devices that vary in both the porous structure and the drug loading levels. The computed diffusion parameters are discussed in relation to the physical properties of the devices.
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