The purpose of the present study was to explore the combined effect of chemical enhancers and iontophoresis on the in vitro permeation of acyclovir gel across porcine skin. Acyclovir gel was formulated using carbopol 940 and hydroxypropyl methylcellulose K4M (HPMC K4M). Effect of drug concentration on the delivery of acyclovir was examined. Increasing drug concentration of acyclovir enhanced its flux across the skin. Incorporation of permeation enhancers (menthol, n-methyl-2-pyrrolidone and polyethylene glycol 400) into the gel resulted in enhanced acyclovir permeation when combined with iontophoresis. Menthol showed the highest drug permeation and when combined with iontophoresis it significantly increased the acyclovir skin permeation.
Keywords: Iontophoresis, permeation enhancers, acyclovir, gel, menthol, polyethylene glycol, n-methyl-2-pyrrolidone
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