Most absorbent material on Earth gives poorly soluble drugs a boost

Many drugs, including the common painkiller ibuprofen, suffer from poor solubility, 80% of all drug candidates have this weakness, in fact, according to a release from Uppsala Universitet in Sweden.  And researchers there who last year discovered the magnesium carbonate material Upsalite, which demonstrated the highest surface area ever measured at 800 square meters per gram, have shown that the substance can completely suppress ibuprofen in a formulation, giving it a higher solubility and three times the dissolution rate.

 Last year, the scientists found that Upsalite broke records for surface area and could be a potentially valuable tool in drug delivery.  Like a sponge, it absorbs liquids rapidly and could act as a delivery vehicle like those currently used to deliver insulin, chemotherapy or autoimmune drugs.  The accidental discovery showed that the material could be made easily and be used for a number of purposes, including electronics and environmental cleanup.  “We think the narrow pores hinder the drug molecules from organizing in a poorly soluble crystalline form and are forced to maintain an amorphous structure that is easier for the body to absorb,” lead author Johan Gómez de la Torre said in a statement.  The university has spun out the company Disruptive Materials AB, which will focus on commercialization of Upsalite.

REFERENCE:  Fierce Drug Delivery; Michael Gibney; 23 JUL 2014

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