Steric stabilization and dissolution characteristics of aqueous suspensions of pharmaceutical interest

  • David A. Rawlins

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


The adsorption of two qroups of nonionic surface active agents and a series of hiqh molecular weiqht hydrophilic polymer fractions onto a polystyrene latex and a drug substance diloxanide furoate B.P. has been investigated. The presence of pores within the drug surface has been demonstrated and this is shown to increase the adsorption of low molecular weight polymer species. Differences in the maximum amount of polymer adsorbed at both solid-solution interfaces have been ascribed to the different hydrophobicities of the surface as determined by contact angle measurements.
Adsorbed layer thicknesses of polymer on polystyrene latex have been determined by three techniques: microelectrophoresis, intensity fluctuation
spectroscopy and by viscometric means. These results, in combination with adsorption data, were used to interpret the configuration of the adsorbed polymer molecules at the interface.
The type of druq suspension produced on adsorbing the different
polymers in the absence of electrostatic stabilization was correlated with theoretical prediuctions of suspension characteristics deduced from potential energy diagrams, The agreement was good for the adsorption of short chain length surfactants, but for the polyvinylalcohols, discrepancies were found between experiment and theory. This was attributed to the inappropriate use of a mean segment density approximation within the adsorbed layer to calculate attractive potentials between particles. A maximum in the redispersibility values for suspensions coated with adsorbed nonylphenylethoxylates was attributed to "partial static stabilization" of the particles in conjunction with the attractive
forces operating in the sediment between bare surface patches on
neighbouring particles.
No significant change in the dissolution of the drug was observed
when nonylphenylethoxylates were adsorbed due to desorption upon contact
with the dissolution medium. Pluronic F68 and all the polyvinylalcohol fractions caused a reduction in the dissolution rate which is explained by the decreased diffusion of drug' through the adsorbed polymer layer.
Date of AwardNov 1979
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorJohn B. Kayes (Supervisor)


  • steric stabilization
  • dissolution
  • pharmaceutical suspensions

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