Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Microfluidic Remote Loading for Rapid Single-Step Liposomal Drug Preparation



Wyatt N. Vreeland, Renee R. Hood, Don L. DeVoe


Here we report a microfluidic system that enables rapid and efficient remote loading of amphipathic drugs into nanoscale liposomes, combining liposome synthesis and remote drug loading in a continuous integrated process. Unlike established bulk methods for remote drug loading, in which each process step is performed in a series of discrete manual operations using large fluid volumes, the microfluidic system incorporates liposome formation, buffer exchange, and liposome/drug mixing and incubation in a continuous-flow process. The platform (Fig. 1) takes advantage of an established microfluidic hydrodynamic flow focusing method for the formation of functionalized, nearly monodisperse liposomes.16–20 The liposome synthesis technology is extended here with the addition of a counterflow microdialysis element, enabling steep transmembrane ion gradients to be formed immediately prior to remote drug loading. The system further implements a drug loading and incubation zone that includes micromixer structures to enhance interactions between liposomes and amphipathic compounds during the remote loading process. The resulting device decreases the processing time for liposome preparation and remote drug loading from a multi-day process to less than 3 minutes, with resulting D/L values up to 5 times greater than typical liposomal therapeutics prepared by conventional bulk scale processes.
Lab on A Chip


active loading, liposomes, microfluidics, drug delivery


Vreeland, W. , Hood, R. and DeVoe, D. (2014), Microfluidic Remote Loading for Rapid Single-Step Liposomal Drug Preparation, Lab on A Chip, [online], (Accessed April 15, 2024)
Created July 29, 2014, Updated November 10, 2018