Albumin-Encapsulated Liposomes: A Novel Drug Delivery Carrier With Hydrophobic Drugs Encapsulated in the Inner Aqueous Core

Yuko Okamoto, Kazuaki Taguchi, Keishi Yamasaki, Mina Sakuragi, Shun'ichi Kuroda, Masaki Otagiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)


Liposomes are clinically used in drug delivery, but loading hydrophobic substances is limited to the hydrophobic space of a lipid membrane, despite the fact that it is favorable to encapsulate substances into the inner aqueous core of liposome, from a drug stability of view. We report herein on the preparation of a liposome with bovine serum albumin encapsulated (BSA-liposome). Using this system, it is possible to encapsulate hydrophobic drugs in the inner aqueous core of the liposome based on the hypothesis that the water solubility of hydrophobic drugs is increased when bound to albumin. The physicochemical properties of the prepared BSA-liposomes could be easily regulated and the loading of hydrophobic drugs in the inner aqueous core of the liposome was dramatically improved by virtue of the drug-binding properties of albumin. An in vivo safety and pharmacokinetic study showed that BSA-liposomes possess favorable properties as a drug carrier, including biocompatibility and a stealth effect. This new type of hydrophobic drug carrier, an albumin-liposome, has the potential for use in delivering numerous hydrophobic drugs that typically bind to albumin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-445
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan 1
Externally publishedYes



  • albumin
  • biocompatibility
  • liposomes
  • protein binding
  • solubility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science

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