Nasal Deposition and Clearance in Man: Comparison of a Bidirectional Powder Device and a Traditional Liquid Spray Pump

Per Gisle Djupesland, M.D., Ph.D.,1 and Arne Skretting, M.Sc.
Journal of Aerosol Medicine and Pulmonary Drug Delivery
Volume 25, Number 0, 2012



Delivery of powder formulations to the nose is an attractive alternative for many drugs and vaccines. This study compared the regional nasal deposition and clearance patterns of lactose powder delivered by the OptiNose powder device (Opt-Powder; OptiNose US Inc., Yardley, PA, USA) to that of liquid aerosol administered via a traditional hand-actuated liquid spray pump (Rexam SP270, Rexam Pharma, France).


The study was an open-label, crossover design in seven healthy subjects (five females, two males). The regional nasal deposition and clearance patterns of the Opt-Powder device were compared to a traditional liquid spray pump by dynamic gamma camera imaging after administration of either 99mTc-labeled lactose powder or liquid 99mTc- diethelyne triamine pentaacetic acid-aerosol. The gamma camera images were scaled and aligned with sagittal magnetic resonance images to identify nasal regions. Possible deposition of radiolabeled material in the lungs following both methods of delivery was also evaluated.


Both powder and spray were distributed to all of the nasal regions. The Opt-Powder device, however, achieved significantly larger initial deposition in the upper and middle posterior regions of the nose than spray (upper posterior region; Opt-Powder 18.3% ± 11.5 vs. Spray 2.4% ± 1.8, p < 0.02; sum of upper and middle posterior regions; Opt-Powder 53.5% ± 18.5 vs. Spray 15.7% ± 13.8, p < 0.02). The summed initial deposition to the lower anterior and posterior regions for spray was three times higher compared to Opt-Powder (Opt-Powder 17.4% ± 24.5 vs. Spray 59.4% ± 18.2, p < 0.04). OptiNose powder delivery resulted in more rapid overall nasal clearance. No lung deposition was observed.


The initial deposition following powder delivery was significantly larger in the ciliated mucosa of the upper and posterior nasal regions, whereas less was deposited in the lower regions. Overall nasal clearance of powder was slower initially, but due to retention in anterior nonciliated regions the overall nasal clearance after spray was slower.