Novel thermal imaging method for rapid screening of drug-polymer miscibility for solid dispersion based formulation development

Muqdad Alhijjaj, Peter Belton, Laszlo Fabian, Nikolaus Wellner, Michael Reading, Sheng Qi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
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This study aimed to develop a rapid, simple and inexpensive screening method for selecting the best polymeric candidates possessing high active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) miscibility during the early stages of formulation development of solid dispersion based pharmaceutical products. A new thermal imaging based method, thermal analysis by structural characterization (TASC), was used as a thermoptometeric tool in conjunction with data analysis software to detect the melting point depression and post-melting dissolution of felodipine particles screened over thin spin-coated films of ten polymers commonly used in the pharmaceutical field. On the polymeric substrates the drug showed different degrees of melting point reduction, reflecting their different levels of polymer-drug miscibility. Using TASC to detect melting point depression is significantly (20-40 times) faster than the conventional DSC method without loss of the sensitivity of detection. The quantity of the material required for the screening is less than 1/1000th of the material used in conventional DSC tests which significantly reduce the material wastage. Isothermal TASC tests and IR imaging confirmed the occurrence of thermal dissolution of the drug in the polymer for more miscible pairs. The real-time stability tests validate the accuracy of the polymer-drug miscibility screening results. These results demonstrate TASC as a promising screening tool for rapidly selecting the polymeric excipients for pharmaceutical formulations development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5625–5636
Number of pages12
JournalMolecular Pharmaceutics
Issue number12
Early online date29 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 3 Dec 2018

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