At the beginning of the nineties solid lipid nanoparticles (SLN) have been introduced as a novel nanoparticulate delivery system produced from solid lipids. Potential problems associated with SLN such as limited drug loading capacity, adjustment of drug release profile and potential drug expulsion during storage are avoided or minimised by the new generation, the nanostructured lipid carriers (NLC). NLC are produced by mixing solid lipids with spatially incompatible lipids leading to special structures of the lipid matrix, i.e. three types of NLC: (I) the imperfect structured type, (II) the structureless type and (III) the multiple type. A special preparation process–applicable to NLC but also SLN–allows the production of highly concentrated particle dispersions (>30–95%). Potential applications as drug delivery system are described.
Author Keywords: Solid lipid nanoparticles; Controlled release; Nanostructure; Stability