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Encapsulation of neem oil in PLGA nanoparticles

Grant number: 20/02050-9
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2020
Effective date (End): April 30, 2022
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering - Industrial Operations and Equipment for Chemical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Liliane Maria Ferrareso Lona
Grantee:Izabella Wyne Inacio Alves Caetano
Host Institution: Faculdade de Engenharia Química (FEQ). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


Neem is an ancient tree that has been used in Asia as a medicinal plant, but was brought to Brazil only in the late 1980s. The neem components have pesticide, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antifungal and antibacterial properties, among others; and more recently, its anti-cancer properties have been discovered.The excellent properties of the neem, combined with the growing interest in nutraceuticals, make the interest in the neem evident. Its active compounds are present in all parts of the plant, but the seed stands out, as it contains more than 100 of them. However, the unsaturated fatty acids present in neem oil are susceptible to oxidation, causing the loss of their beneficial properties. To avoid neem degradation and allow a more controlled release, this project will study the encapsulation of neem oil in poly (L-lactic acid-co-glycolic acid) - PLGA nanoparticles; a biocompatible and biodegradable polymer; using the single emulsion-solvent evaporation technique for the encapsulation.It should be noted that there is only one work in literature (of 2019) where the neem is encapsulated in PLGA particles, but the nanoprecipitation technique is used and few results are presented.In this project, in addition to characterization and morphological analysis of the material, the release kinetics, the encapsulation efficiency, the efficacy of the product obtained and its cytotoxicity will be studied, with a view to its application in the medical field.In order to do that, contacts are being made with a Biology Institute group, as well as we are initiating a partnership with another group of FEQ/Unicamp which is researching bioactive spray dressings, with which we are preparing a thematic project in the area of bioactive materials, in order to incorporate the particles produced in this master's project in the aforementioned spray dressings. (AU)

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