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Thursday 06 December 2007

Solubility of core materials in aqueous polymeric solution effect on microencapsulation of curcumin.

By: Aziz HA, Peh KK, Tan YT.

Drug Dev Ind Pharm 2007 Nov;33(11):1263-72

Curcumin, the main active constituent of turmeric herb (Curcuma longa L.) have been reported to possess many medicinal values. The application of curcumin in dermatological preparations is limited by their intense yellow color property, which stains the fabric and skin. The objectives of this study were to reduce the color staining effect and enhance the stability of curcumin via microencapsulation using gelatin simple coacervation method. As for curcumin, ethanol and acetone were used as coacervating solvents. Curcumin was dispersed in ethanol while dissolved in acetone. Irrespective of the types of coacervating solvents used, microencapsulation resolved the color-staining problem and enhanced the flow properties and photo-stability of curcumin. Nevertheless, it was found that more spherical curcumin microcapsules with higher yield, higher curcumin loading, and higher entrapment efficiency were obtained with acetone than ethanol. The in vitro release of curcumin after microencapsulation was slightly prolonged. Further evaluation of the effects of solubility of core materials in coacervating solvent or polymeric aqueous solution using six different drug compounds, namely, ketoconazole, ketoprofen, magnesium stearate, pseudoephedrine HCl, diclofenac sodium, and paracetamol, suggested that the solubility of core materials in aqueous polymeric solution determined the successful formation of microcapsules. Microcapsules could only be formed if the core materials were not dissolved in the aqueous polymeric solution while the core materials could either be dissolved or dispersed in the coacervating solvent. In summary, microencapsulation not only circumvents the color-staining problem but also improved the stability and flowability of curcumin. The solubility of core material in aqueous polymeric solution plays a pivotal role in determining the successful formation of microcapsules.

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