In vitro study of chitosan-based multi-responsive hydrogels as drug release vehicles: A preclinical study

Nafisa Gull*, Shahzad Maqsood Khan, Muhammad Taqi Zahid Butt, Syed Khalid, Atif Islam, Sumreen Asim, Sadaf Hafeez, Rafi Ullah Khan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (SciVal)


Systematic administration of painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs is routinely employed to minimize pain and bodily disorders. Controlled drug delivery has the potential to improve the outcomes of disorders by providing sustained exposure to efficacious drug concentrations. Herein, we report the fabrication of multi-responsive hydrogels using reactive and functional polymers such as chitosan and polyvinyl pyrrolidone by varying the concentration of a cleavable crosslinker, tetraethyl orthosilicate. The swelling indices of the hydrogels were evaluated in distilled water, solutions with different pH values and different electrolytes. FTIR, WAXRD and TGA were conducted to investigate the structures, crystallinities and thermal stabilities of the prepared multi-responsive hydrogels, respectively. The ultimate tensile strength and elongations at break of the fabricated hydrogels were investigated to assess their mechanical stability. Optical microscopy, biodegradation, antimicrobial and cytotoxicity analyses were further carried out to verify the magnified crosslinked and porous structures, biodegradabilities, biocompatibilities and toxic behaviour of the as-prepared hydrogels, respectively. Drug release analysis was conducted to evaluate their release behaviour in PBS, SGF, SIF and electrolyte solutions. The overall results indicate the successful development of novel, non-toxic and sustained drug deliverable hydrogels, which can be considered as a paramount success towards the fabrication of controlled drug delivery systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31078-31091
Number of pages14
JournalRSC Advances
Issue number53
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)


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