Research and Application of Sodium alginate in Pharmaceutical Chemicals

Research and Application of Sodium alginate in Pharmaceutical Chemicals


Application in Pharmaceutical Preparation


As early as 1938, sodium alginate powder had already been included in USP (United States Pharmacopeia). In 1963, alginate was accepted in British Pharmacopoeia. Alginate is insoluble in water but will swell when put in water. Consequently, sodium alginate powder is traditionally used as an adhesion agent of tablets while alginate as a disintegrating agent of rapid-release tablets. However, the impact of sodium alginate powder on the tablet property depends on the added content by prescription and in some cases it helps to promote the disintegration of tablets. Sodium alginate powder can be added during the granulating process but cannot be added in the form of powder after granulation. In this way, the production process becomes simpler. Compared with the use of starch, the mechanical strength of tablets with the use of sodium alginate powder is higher.

Sodium alginate powder can also be used in the production of suspension, gel and concentrated emulsion with fat and oils as matrix. It can also be used in some liquid medicines to increase the viscosity and improve suspension of solids. Propylene glycol alginate helps to improve the stability of emulsion. The transmission system of controlled release drugs plays a vital role in health care. Attempts are made to minimize the time before separation of water-soluble medicine particles from colloidal media and make sure the maximum drug loading capacity. However, it’s less important for water-insoluble medicines. It has been found that drug delivery is related to dissolubility of drugs used.

A researcher reported that the swelling of alginate gels has pH sensibility. For example, in distilled water or acid medium (pH1.5KCl-HCl), no change occurs while in pH7.0 phosphate buffer, the particles rapidly swell and the size gets larger. Sensibility to acids of sodium alginate powder is a useful property to medicines because it helps to prevent medicines from attack by gastric acid. Furthermore, the swelling of xerogel in the small intestine promotes the drug release at an expected rate.

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On March 18th, 2013, posted in: Products and Techniques, Sodium Alginate by Tags:

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