New Inhalation Formulations for Improved Delivery of Antimicrobials (APRINHA)



Our body’s branching airway system that delivers oxygen deep into our lungs presents an effective barrier to protect our lungs from contaminants in the air, such as dust, pollen, and pollutants, but also bacteria and viruses.

The same barrier that protects us from inhaling unwanted matter also presents a considerable hurdle in using the human airways as an effective route of drug delivery. A variety of respiratory diseases benefit from inhaling a drug to route its active ingredient directly to its desired location in the human lung, rather than taking a detour through the stomach or blood circulation. Respiratory infections by bacteria, also known as bacterial pneumonia, can turn into life-threating conditions that could more easily be cured with powerful antibiotic inhalations. A complicating factor in the development of inhaled antibiotics is the fact that large amounts of antibiotics need to be applied, of which only a fraction end up at the actual site of infection.

Attempts to improve existing inhalation technologies have seen some progress in recent years. The APRINHA project aims to leverage on some of these achievements to study and compare a variety of novel formulation technologies using the new antibiotic apramycin as a promising case study. Apramycin is expected to be perfectly suited for such studies because it belongs to a drug class that has already been shown to be suited for inhalation. The project aims to develop an antibiotic inhalation with high penetration, deposition, retention, and efficacy of drug, so as to more effectively cure pneumonia patients.

Project partners

  • Sven Hobbie, University of Zurich, Switzerland (Coordinator)
  • Dorothee Winterberg, Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine, Germany
  • Iraida Loinaz, CIDETEC, Spain
  • Frédéric Tewes, INSERM U1070, France
  • Edgars Liepins, Latvian Institute of Organic Synthesis, Latvia
  • Anna Fureby, RISE Reaserch Institute of Sweden AB, Sweden
  • Per Gerde, Inhalation Sciences Sweden AB, Sweden