The Science Journal of the Lander College of Arts and Sciences


The development of a new drug requires research and evaluation before the drug is approved to enter the market. One of the factors determining the efficacy of a drug is the aqueous solubility of the drug. A current problem in today’s pharmaceutical industry is the low aqueous solubility of many useful drugs. A drug with a low aqueous solubility will not readily be absorbed by the body. The low aqueous solubility of a drug is often due to the drug’s hydrophobic character. Drug enhancement methods are necessary to avoid the obstacle of drug insolubility and many methods have been developed. This paper focuses on the use of cyclodextrins and their derivatives as a drug carrier to increase the solubility of poorly soluble drugs. Cyclodextrins have both hydrophobic and hydrophilic character and are capable of encapsulating a hydrophobic drug molecule and forming guest-host complexes. The cyclodextrin’s cylindrical shape allows the guest molecule, the drug, to be kept within the hydrophobic interior while the exterior of the cyclodextrin is hydrophilic and soluble in aqueous solution. This complex improves the drug solubility and ultimately the bioavailability of insoluble drugs. In this paper the complexation of four drugs with cyclodextrin was studied; ibuprofen, imatinib, praziquantel and camptothecin. In each case the aqueous solubility of the poorly soluble drug was increased with the use of cyclodextrins.