Effects of various penetration enhancers on percutaneous absorption of piroxicam from emulgels

J Shokri, Sh Azarmi, Z Fasihi, S Hallaj-Nezhadi, A Nokhodchi, Y Javadzadeh


A suitable emulgel formulation of piroxicam was prepared and its percutaneous permeation was investigated using Wistar rat skin and diffusion cell technique. The concentrations of the drug in receptor phase of diffusion cells were measured using HPLC method. The effect of three types of penetration enhancers (Myrj 52, cineol and TranscutolP) with different concentrations on transdermal permeation of the drug was also evaluated. Flux, Kp and enhancement ratios (ERs) of piroxicam in the presence of enhancers was measured and compared with emulgel base alone and simple commercial gel. The results showed a significant enhancement in the flux from emulgel base compared to hydroalcoholic gel formulation (9.91 folds over simple gel). The highest enhancement ratio (ER=3.11) was observed for Myrj 52  at the concentration of 0.25%. Higher concentrations of Myrj 52did not show any enhancement in the drug flux due to micelle formation and solubilization of the drug by micelles. The increase in solubility, in turn, increases the saturated concentration and reduces the thermodynamic activity of the drug. Transcutol® P with concentrations higher than 0.25% w/w showed burst transportation of the drug through the skin. All concentrations of cineol and Transcutol did not show any enhancing effects over emulgel base alone (ER <1).

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