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Open Access Research article

Ceruminal diffusion activities and ceruminolytic characteristics of otic preparations – an in-vitro study

Jessica Stahl1*, Stefanie Mielke1, Wolf-Rüdiger Pankow2 and Manfred Kietzmann1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmacy, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Foundation, Buenteweg 17, 30559, Hannover, Germany

2 Vétoquinol GmbH, Parkstraße 10, 88212, Ravensburg, Germany

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BMC Veterinary Research 2013, 9:70  doi:10.1186/1746-6148-9-70

Published: 10 April 2013

Abstract

Background

An in-vitro setup was established in order to determine a) the diffusion activities of eight otic preparations (Aurizon®, Eas Otic®, Epi Otic®, Otifree®, Otomax®, Panolog®, Posatex®, Surolan®) through synthetic cerumen, and b) the ceruminolytic capacity and impregnation effects of these products. The main lipid classes of canine cerumen produced with moderate, non-purulent otitis externa were determined by thin layer chromatography and were subsequently used to produce a standardised synthetic cerumen (SCC). SCC was filled into capillary tubes, all of which were loaded with six commercially available multipurpose otic medications and two ear cleaners, each mixed with two markers in two experimental setups. These two marker compounds (Oil red O and marbofloxacin) were chosen, since they exhibit different physicochemical drug characteristics by which it is possible to determine and verify the diffusion activity of different types of liquids (i.e. the otic preparations). A synthetic cerumen described in the literature (JSL) was also used for comparison as its lipid composition was different to SCC. The diffusion activities of the otic preparations through both types of synthetic cerumen were studied over 24 hours. A second in-vitro experiment determined both the ceruminolytic activity and impregnation effect of the otic preparations by comparing the weight loss or weight gain after repeated incubation of JSL.

Results

Canine cerumen is mainly composed of triglycerides, sterol esters, fatty acid esters and squalene. The diffusion experiments showed a high diffusion efficacy along with a high impregnation effect for one test product. All the other products exhibited a lower diffusion activity with a mild to moderate impregnation effect. A mild ceruminolytic activity was observed for the two ear cleaners but not for any of the otic medications.

Conclusions

The present study demonstrates that there are significant differences in the diffusion characteristics and ceruminolytic properties of the eight tested otic preparations.

Keywords:
Canine otitis externa; Cerumen; Lipids; Otic preparations; Ear cleaner; Diffusion activity; Ceruminolysis