Alvarez Figueroa, M. Javiera

Javiera Alvarez F.
Phone (56-2) 2354 4751
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Profesor Asociado
PhD in Pharmacy
Universidad de Santiago de Compostela (Spain), 2001




The skin, as route of administration of drugs, offers many advantages, where they stand out: to avoid the first pass metabolism, to be safe, painless and of easy use. However, the barrier function of the skin, product of its high impermeability granted by the stratum corneum, becomes the main limitation for the administration of drugs by this route. Therefore, the use of new technologies that promote the penetration of drugs through the skin is of vital importance. Therefore, in our laboratory have been studied different drugs useful to be applied through the skin (antipsychotics, psoriasis drugs, among others) and techniques associated with its promotion (iontophoresis, microemulsions, hydrogels, nanosystems) to reach adequate concentrations to achieve a systemic or topical effect.

For the evaluation of this, ex vivo studies are carried out using Franz diffusion cells and 1-2-day-old pig skin.
When new active molecules (potential drugs) are developed, not only is it important to evaluate their pharmacological activity, but also other parameters such as their dissolution and absorption must be evaluated since the latter are fundamental for that molecule can be formulated in a medicine. From this, the need arises to develop tools and in vitro tests that evaluate these processes. It is in this context that the 1998 PAMPA (Parallel Artificial Membrane Permeability Assay), defined as a simple method for the prediction of the transcellular absorption of molecules, appears. In our laboratory, this method has been studied to determine the absorption, either gastrointestinal or blood-brain barrier, of synthetic molecules that have not yet been approved as drugs. Studies have also been developed that evaluate the influence of the lipid used in determining the in vitro permeability of the molecules under study.