Clinical Pharmacology & Biopharmaceutics
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Some Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) have been found to be deliquescent in nature and their formulation into solid
dosage forms have been difficult and expensive. The conventional approach currently employed in the tablet formulation of
deliquescent APIs involves procedures to build a humidity control system in conjunction with a cooling/heating system. Complex
instrumentation and digital controls involving expensive gadgets such as a Programmable Logic Controller, a humidity transmitter,
a pan humidifier, power contactors, a thermostatically controlled heater and a set of solenoid valves are used. The high cost of total
equipment becomes prohibitive for the average users. The innovative approach would be a cheaper procedure involving the use of
an efflorescent material as a diluent of the deliquescent API. In this study, a nano-silica namely AEROSIL R927 Pharma® (originally
obtained from common sand) was triturated with the deliquescent powdered extract of Vernonia galamensis (the deliquescent API)
in the ratio 1:1.4 and carefully formulated into tablets by a ‘closely monitored’ wet granulation procedure. The effect of moisture on
the mixture was characterized using FTIR and DSC, and the mechanical strength and quality of tablets were investigated using tensile
strength, CSFR:DT ratio, and dissolution rate. Results show that good quality tablets can be produced from deliquescent APIs at an
astonishing cheap price and low energy of production.
Musa Autamashih has completed his PhD from Ahmadu Bello University and presented pharmaceutical research innovative papers at the Pharmaceutical Sciences World Congress, Amsterdam, April 25, 2007, and at the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists San Diego, California Conference, November 14, 2007. He is currently working on the effect of nano-silica as efflorescent diluent in the solid dosage formulation of deliquescent APIs. He has published 10 papers in reputed journals and is the present Head of Pharmaceutical Research at the School of Pharmacy, Kampala International University in Uganda.