AAPS PharmSciTech

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 151–159 | Cite as

Low-Viscosity Hydroxypropylcellulose (HPC) Grades SL and SSL: Versatile Pharmaceutical Polymers for Dissolution Enhancement, Controlled Release, and Pharmaceutical Processing

  • Ashish Sarode
  • Peng Wang
  • Catherine Cote
  • David R. Worthen
Research Article


Hydroxypropylcellulose (HPC)-SL and -SSL, low-viscosity hydroxypropylcellulose polymers, are versatile pharmaceutical excipients. The utility of HPC polymers was assessed for both dissolution enhancement and sustained release of pharmaceutical drugs using various processing techniques. The BCS class II drugs carbamazepine (CBZ), hydrochlorthiazide, and phenytoin (PHT) were hot melt mixed (HMM) with various polymers. PHT formulations produced by solvent evaporation (SE) and ball milling (BM) were prepared using HPC-SSL. HMM formulations of BCS class I chlorpheniramine maleate (CPM) were prepared using HPC-SL and -SSL. These solid dispersions (SDs) manufactured using different processes were evaluated for amorphous transformation and dissolution characteristics. Drug degradation because of HMM processing was also assessed. Amorphous conversion using HMM could be achieved only for relatively low-melting CBZ and CPM. SE and BM did not produce amorphous SDs of PHT using HPC-SSL. Chemical stability of all the drugs was maintained using HPC during the HMM process. Dissolution enhancement was observed in HPC-based HMMs and compared well to other polymers. The dissolution enhancement of PHT was in the order of SE > BM > HMM > physical mixtures, as compared to the pure drug, perhaps due to more intimate mixing that occurred during SE and BM than in HMM. Dissolution of CPM could be significantly sustained in simulated gastric and intestinal fluids using HPC polymers. These studies revealed that low-viscosity HPC-SL and -SSL can be employed to produce chemically stable SDs of poorly as well as highly water-soluble drugs using various pharmaceutical processes in order to control drug dissolution.


controlled release formulations hydroxypropylcellulose melt extrusion solid dispersion 


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Copyright information

© American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ashish Sarode
    • 1
    • 2
  • Peng Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Catherine Cote
    • 3
  • David R. Worthen
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of PharmacyUniversity of Rhode IslandKingstonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Chemical Engineering, College of EngineeringUniversity of Rhode IslandKingstonUSA
  3. 3.Nisso America, Inc.New YorkUSA

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