Theranostics 2022; 12(11):4904-4921. doi:10.7150/thno.74845 This issue

Research Paper

Injectable electrospun fiber-hydrogel composite sequentially releasing clonidine and ropivacaine for prolonged and walking regional analgesia

Sufang Chen1,3#, Weifeng Yao1#, Haixia Wang1,3#, Tienan Wang1, Xue Xiao1, Guoliang Sun1, Jing Yang1, Yu Guan1, Zhen Zhang1, Zhengyuan Xia2, Mingqiang Li1,3,4✉, Yu Tao1,3✉, Ziqing Hei1✉

1. Department of Anesthesiology and Center for Nanomedicine, The Third Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China.
2. Department of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong 999077, China.
3. Laboratory of Biomaterials and Translational Medicine, The Third Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China.
4. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Liver Disease Research, Guangzhou 510630, China.
# Sufang Chen, Weifeng Yao, and Haixia Wang contributed equally to this work.

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Citation:
Chen S, Yao W, Wang H, Wang T, Xiao X, Sun G, Yang J, Guan Y, Zhang Z, Xia Z, Li M, Tao Y, Hei Z. Injectable electrospun fiber-hydrogel composite sequentially releasing clonidine and ropivacaine for prolonged and walking regional analgesia. Theranostics 2022; 12(11):4904-4921. doi:10.7150/thno.74845. Available from https://www.thno.org/v12p4904.htm

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Abstract

Graphic abstract

Rationale: Peripheral nerve block is a traditional perioperative analgesic method for its precise pain control and low systemic toxicity. However, a single low dose of local anesthetic merely provides a few hours of analgesia, and high dose results in irreversible toxicity, whereas continuous infusion of anesthetics is expensive and complicated. Therefore, it is necessary to develop a long-acting and sensory-selective local anesthetic for safe perioperative analgesia.

Methods: An injectable composite comprising ropivacaine-loaded poly (ε-caprolactone) electrospun fiber and clonidine-loaded F127 hydrogel (Fiber-Rop/Gel-Clo composite) was developed for long-acting and walking regional analgesia with barely one dose. The peripheral nerve blockade effect of the composite was evaluated in a rat sciatic nerve block model. Also, the biodegradability and biosafety of the composite was evaluated.

Results: The preferentially released Clo from the hydrogel rapidly constricted the peripheral arterial vessels, reducing the blood absorption of Rop and thus enhancing the local Rop accumulation at the injection site. The subsequently sustainable release of Rop from the fiber, significantly prolonged the sciatic nerve block of rats. Remarkably, an amazing sensorimotor segregation effect was achieved, as the sensory blockade (32.0 ± 1.4 h) lasted significantly longer than the motor blockade (20.3 ± 0.9 h). Additionally, the Fiber-Rop/Gel-Clo composite presented good biodegradability and biosafety in vivo.

Conclusions: Our designed Fiber-Rop/Gel-Clo composite with minimal invasion, prolonged synergistic analgesia, and strikingly sensorimotor segregation effect, posted a promising prospect for regional long-term walking analgesia in clinical treatment.

Keywords: ropivacaine, clonidine, electrospun fiber, injectable hydrogel, long-acting regional analgesia, sensorimotor separation