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Characterizing the Structure of Pharmaceutical Granules Obtained by Wet Granulation with Varying Amounts of Water via Raman Chemical Imaging

Volume 65, Number 11 (Nov. 2011) Page 1291-1299


A pharmaceutical formulation containing metformin hydrochloride (MET), hydroxypropyl cellulose (HPC), and microcrystalline cellulose (MCC) was wet granulated with varying amounts of water and the structure of the obtained granules was characterized by Raman chemical mapping. Univariate Raman mapping was found to be satisfactory for producing the images of the two components of interest (HPC and MCC). In addition to the images, the average Raman spectra from the maps as well as the micro-Raman spectra from the hot pixels were analyzed. HPC is found to strongly respond to the addition of water, with its domain dissipating and Raman bands becoming weaker as the water addition increases. MCC is also responsive to water, reacting similarly to HPC but to a much smaller extent and only for the largest amounts of water. Granules made with increasing water content also have improved tabletting properties and flow.

Index Headings: Raman chemical imaging; Metformin; Hydroxypropyl cellulose; Microcrystalline cellulose; Wet granulation.