Cyclodextrins in pharmaceutical formulations II: solubilization, binding constant, and complexation efficiency

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In this short review, we discuss the determination of binding constants and complexation efficiency, and factors that influence the latter. We also describe the use of the complexation efficiency value to assess the stabilizing effects of various cyclodextrins

Cyclodextrins are cyclic oligosaccharides that have been recognized as pharmaceutical adjuvants for the past 20 years. The molecular structure of these glucose derivatives, which approximates a truncated cone, bucket, or torus, generates a hydrophilic exterior surface and a nonpolar interior cavity.

Cyclodextrins can interact with appropriately sized drug molecules to yield an inclusion complex. These noncovalent inclusion complexes offer a variety of advantages over noncomplexed forms of a drug. Cyclodextrins are carbohydrates that are primarily used to enhance the aqueous solubility, physical chemical stability, and bioavailability of drugs. Their other applications include preventing drug–drug interactions, converting liquid drugs into microcrystalline powders, minimizing gastrointestinal and ocular irritation, and reducing or eliminating unpleasant taste and smell. Here, we focus on the solubilization of drugs by complexation, and discuss the determination and significance of binding
constants for cyclodextrin complexes, and the determination of complexation efficiency and factors that influence it. We also make some general observations on cyclodextrin complexation and the use of cyclodextrins in solid, as well as parenteral, dosage forms.

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