The objective of this study was to optimize the particle size and encapsulation efficiency of chitosan nanoparticles
loaded with 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU) by response surface methodology. Nanoparticles were prepared by ionic gelation
method from chitosan and penta sodium triphosphate (TPP) at different combinations of chitosan viscosity, chitosan concentration
and chitosan/TPP mass ratio according to the Box-Behnken experimental design. The particle size and encapsulation
efficiency of prepared particles were measured by dynamic light scattering and UV spectroscopy, respectively, and
the obtained data were subjected to multiple linear regression analysis followed by multi-attribute utility analysis to obtain
a model for prediction of the optimum response. The optimum conditions for the production of 5-FU loaded chitosan
nanoparticles were found to be low viscosity chitosan 0.5-1 mg/mL, middle viscosity chitosan 0.5-0.8 mg/mL and high
viscosity chitosan 0.5-0.75 mg/mL and chitosan/TPP mass ratio of 4 or 6, yielding nanoparticles at the average diameter
range of 114-188 nm and encapsulation efficiencies between 42-55%.
Keywords: Box-Behnken experimental design, Chitosan, 5-FU, Nanoparticle, Optimization, response surface methodology.
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