Highly porous drug-eluting structures: from wound dressings to stents and scaffolds for tissue regeneration

Jonathan J. Elsner, Amir Kraitzer, Orly Grinberg, Meital Zilberman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


For many biomedical applications, there is need for porous implant materials. The current article focuses on a method for preparation of drug-eluting porous structures for various biomedical applications, based on freeze drying of inverted emulsions. This fabrication process enables the incorporation of any drug, to obtain an "active implant" that releases drugs to the surrounding tissue in a controlled desired manner. Examples for porous implants based on this technique are antibiotic-eluting mesh/matrix structures used for wound healing applications, antiproliferative drug-eluting composite fibers for stent applications and local cancer treatment, and protein-eluting films for tissue regeneration applications. In the current review we focus on these systems. We show that the release profiles of both types of drugs, water-soluble and water-insoluble, are affected by the emulsion's formulation parameters. The former's release profile is affected mainly through the emulsion stability and the resulting porous microstructure, whereas the latter's release mechanism occurs via water uptake and degradation of the host polymer. Hence, appropriate selection of the formulation parameters enables to obtain desired controllable release profile of any bioactive agent, water-soluble or water-insoluble, and also fit its physical properties to the application.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-270
Number of pages32
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2012


FundersFunder number
Israel Ministry of Health3-3943
Israel Science Foundation1312/07


    • biomaterials
    • controlled release
    • poly (dl-lactic-co-glycolic acid)
    • porosity
    • tissue engineering


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