Pharmaceutical applications of supercritical fluid extraction of emulsions for micro-/nanoparticle formation

Heejun Park, Jeong Soo Kim, Sebin Kim, Eun Sol Ha, Min Soo Kim, Sung Joo Hwang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Micro-/nanoparticle formulations containing drugs with or without various biocompatible excipients are widely used in the pharmaceutical field to improve the physicochemical and clinical properties of the final drug product. Among the various micro-/nanoparticle production technologies, emulsion-based particle formation is the most widely used because of its unique advantages such as uniform generation of spherical small particles and higher encapsulation efficiency (EE). For this emulsion-based micro-/nanoparticle technology, one of the most important factors is the extraction efficiency associated with the fast removal of the organic solvent. In consideration of this, a technology called supercritical fluid extraction of emulsions (SFEE) that uses the unique mass transfer mechanism and solvent power of a supercritical fluid (SCF) has been proposed to overcome the shortcomings of several conventional technologies such as solvent evaporation, extraction, and spray drying. This review article presents the main aspects of SFEE technology for the preparation of micro-/nanoparticles by focusing on its pharmaceutical applications, which have been organized and classified according to several types of drug delivery systems and active pharmaceutical ingredients. It was definitely confirmed that SFEE can be applied in a variety of drugs from water-soluble to poorly water-soluble. In addition, it has advantages such as low organic solvent residual, high EE, desirable release control, better particle size control, and agglomeration prevention through efficient and fast solvent removal compared to conventional micro-/nanoparticle technologies. Therefore, this review will be a good resource for determining the applicability of SFEE to obtain better pharmaceutical quality when researchers in related fields want to select a suitable manufacturing process for preparing desired micro-/nanoparticle drug delivery systems containing their active material.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1928
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Nov

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https:// 4.0/).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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