Structured drug-loaded bioresorbable films for support structures

M. Zilberman, N. D. Schwade, R. S. Meidell, R. C. Eberhart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bioresorbable films can serve simultaneously as anatomic support structures and as drug delivery platforms. In the present study, bioresorbable PLLA films containing dexamethasone were developed through solution processing. The effect of processing parameters on the film morphology and the resulting mechanical properties was studied. A model describing the structuring of these films is suggested. Generally, the solvent evaporation rate determines the kinetics of drug and polymer crystallization and thus, both the mode of drug dispersion in the polymer and the resulting mechanical properties. Two types of structured films were studied: (1) a polymer film with drug located on its surface, obtained due to drug skin formation accompanied by a later polymer core formation; and (2) a polymer film with small drug particles and crystals distributed within the bulk, obtained by parallel solidification of the two components. A prototypical application of these films is an expandable biodegradable support structure (stent), which we have developed. This stent demonstrated good initial mechanical properties. The film structure has only a minor effect on the stent radial compression strength, but more significantly affects the tensile mechanical properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)875-892
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Biomaterials Science, Polymer Edition
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
National Heart, Lung, and Blood InstituteR01HL053225


    • Bioresorbable films
    • Dexamethasone
    • Poly(lactic acid)
    • Stent


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