Evaluation of drug interactions with nanofibrillar cellulose

Ruzica Kolakovic (Corresponding Author), Leena Peltonen, Antti Laukkanen, Maarit Hellman, Päivi Laaksonen, Markus Linder, Jouni Hirvonen, Timo Laaksonen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


Nanofibrillar cellulose (NFC) (also referred to as cellulose nanofibers, nanocellulose, microfibrillated, or nanofibrillated cellulose) has recently gotten wide attention in various research areas and it has also been studied as excipient in formulation of the pharmaceutical dosage forms. Here, we have evaluated the interactions between NFC and the model drugs of different structural characteristics (size, charge, etc.). The series of permeation studies were utilized to evaluate the ability of the drugs in solution to diffuse through the thin, porous, dry NFC films. An incubation method was used to determine capacity of binding of chosen model drugs to NFC as well as isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) to study thermodynamics of the binding process. A genetically engineered fusion protein carrying double cellulose binding domain was used as a positive control since its affinity and capacity of binding for NFC have already been reported. The permeation studies revealed the size dependent diffusion rate of the model drugs through the NFC films. The results of both binding and ITC studies showed that the studied drugs bind to the NFC material and indicated the pH dependence of the binding and electrostatic forces as the main mechanism.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1238-1244
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics
Issue number3 Part B
Publication statusPublished - 2013
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • nanofibrillar cellulose
  • NFC films
  • drug permeation
  • drug binding
  • incubation
  • ITC
  • binding capacity


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