Formulation of Aceclofenac Tablets Utilizing Nanosuspension as Granulating



Aceclofenac, [2-[[2-[2- [(2, 6-dichloro phenyl) amino] phenyl] acetyl] oxy] acetic acid], is a well known non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and analgesic drug compound as proven in Determine 1.1 The primary drawback within the therapeutic response of aceclofenac in orally taken dosage type is its poor aqueous-solubility because it belongs to Class 2 drug of the BCS (biopharmaceutical classification system).2 Nanosuspension know-how has been relevant to enhance the poor aqueous solubility and bioavailability points.3 Anti-solvent precipitation (a bottom-up strategy) is an efficient method which concerned dissolving the drug compound in solvent adopted by incorporating into the anti-solvent part, lastly resulting in the precipitation of drug.4 However nonetheless, this know-how is dealing with some points together with the upkeep of particle dimension, stability drawback after precipitation course of and scale-up of batch. In ancient times, precipitation-ultrasonication has gained nice focus for controlling each the nucleation and crystallization as a result of environment friendly switch of mass to hasten molecular diffusion.4–7 HPMC (hydroxypropyl methylcellulose), PVA (polyvinyl alcohol), PVP (polyvinylpyrrolidone) and so on., are some polymers used to realize stability.8,9

Determine 1 Chemical construction of aceclofenac.

Regardless of the progress on this space of analysis, nanosuspension applied sciences have an instability drawback, produced by the nucleation and particle dimension development. Within the nonexistence of a stabilizer, the excessive floor power of nanosized particles can induce Ostwald’s ripening.10 The strong dosage kinds are most well-liked on account of ease of administration, correct dosing and stability. Nanosuspensions are normally dried to boost their stability, permitting the conversion into strong dosage kinds, both tablets or capsules.11 The literature studies numerous strategies for transformation of nanosuspension into strong dosage kinds (tablets) together with: spray drying, layering of nanosuspension onto the pellets or granules, freeze drying or moist granulation, and so on.12–14 It’s estimated that roughly 33% of all prescribed medicines are allotted within the type of tablets.15,16

Subsequently, it’s crucial to manufacture steady aceclofenac-tablets to resolve these issues of nanosuspension and in the end enhanced bioavailability. The WG (Moist granulation) course of was chosen as it is vitally easy and quick to execute, which makes it a cheap and time saving process. Subsequently, tablets had been produced by utilizing nanosuspension as granulating fluid with different appropriate excipients with the target of accelerating the dissolution fee which can in the end enhance bioavailability of the chosen drug candidate.

Supplies and Strategies


Aceclofenac (AC), sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), HPMC (Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose) Grade: 6cps, PVP K30 (polyvinylpyrrolidone), ethanol, corn starch (CS), microcrystalline cellulose (MCC) pH 102, Sodium starch glycolate (NaStG), Talcum (Tal), magnesium stearate (Mg) and all the opposite chemical compounds used had been acquired as a beneficiant reward from Bryon Prescription drugs Non-public Restricted, Peshawar, KPK (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Pakistan and Legacy Prescription drugs Non-public Restricted, KPK, Pakistan.

All of the experiments carried out on animals had been permitted from Departmental moral committee, Scientific Process Difficulty-I by Animal Ethics Committee at College of Malakand, KPK and associated Bye-Legal guidelines 2008 vide permitted protocol quantity UOM/PHARM/EC/01/AC/2017. The 1996 tips by Nationwide Analysis Council had been adopted for the welfare of laboratory animals.17

Formulation of AC Tablets

Optimized AC-N (aceclofenac nanosuspension) was fabricated as per our beforehand reported work utilizing “precipitation-ultrasonication methodology”.18 Just by dissolving aceclofenac (30 mg/mL) in natural solvent i.e. ethanol adopted by injecting it to antisolvent part i.e. water cooled at 4°C. The antisolvent part containing polymers/stabilizers together with HPMC, PVP-K30 and aqueous SLS resolution already ready at velocity of 1500 rpm by the magnetic stirrer. Then, the ultrasonication processing of the ready suspension was carried at totally different time size and ultrasonic inputs at 3 sec pause. The AC-N (aceclofenac nanosuspension) was added as granulating fluid to different appropriate excipients to arrange granules for conversion to the tablets as listed in Desk 1. After optimization, two batches (ACN-1, ACN-2) containing nanosuspension as granulating liquid had been ready. Merely, the corn starch, lactose and MCC had been blended and handed by means of mesh 30. Binder resolution was ready utilizing PVP K30 and IPA (Isopropyl alcohol), then the aceclofenac nanosuspension was added to this (binder) resolution. The combination (binder + nanosuspension) is additional included to the already ready combination (corn starch, lactose, MCC) and handed by means of mesh 08. The granules had been dried in oven at 60ºC, sifted with extra-granular excipients. The micronized particles batch (AC-M) was ready by passing the corn starch, lactose, MCC, and micronized drug by means of the mesh 30 after which blended totally. The binder resolution was ready in the identical method as talked about earlier for fabrication of the ACN-1 and ACN-2 batches, then included it to the primary combination. The mix was handed by way of mesh 30, dried in oven at 60ºC and sifted with extra-granular excipients. All of the ready and dried granules had been evaluated and at last compressed utilizing a compression machine.

Desk 1 Composition of aceclofenac tablets

Analysis of Nanosuspensions and Formulated Tablets

Particle Dimension Dedication

The particle dimension of the diluted pattern (nanosuspension) was decided in triplicate utilizing Zetasizer (Malvern, UK), the place the Brownian movement of the particles are measured which is transformed to dimension and dimension distribution by the appliance of Stokes-Einstein relation.18

Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM)

Scanning electron microscope was used to guage the morphology of freshly ready uncooked drug, which was deposited on glass slides adopted by evaporating the solvent. Fabricated nanosuspension was evaluated utilizing TEM. Pattern (AC liquid nanosuspension) was dropped on a copper 200 mesh formvar/carbon coated grid and allowed to dry.18

FTIR Research

For finding out compatibility between uncooked drug and different components utilized in formulation, the FTIR evaluation was carried out. The drug and formulation mix compatibility had been evaluated utilizing Thermoscientific Nicolet, FTIR Instrument, USA. A small amount of uncooked drug and mix of formulation had been instantly positioned on germanium piece of the infrared (IR) spectrometer with consistently utilized stress. The IR absorbance scanning vary was 4000–500 cm−1.19

Powder X-Ray Diffractometry (P-XRD) and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC)

For crystallinity, the samples had been evaluated utilizing P-XRD (Panalytical, X’pert), by scanning detector over 2θ angles at a scan fee of 0.01°. The melting level of aceclofenac uncooked drug, AC-N and fabricated pill batch had been carried out by DSC (TA-60, Shimadzu). All of the samples, which had been about 3 mg, had been positioned in pans fabricated from aluminum for heating, beneath 50 mL per min nitrogen circulate fee and the scanning was saved at 10°C per min, from 40–200°C.

Analysis of the Ready Granules

The densities (tapped, bulk), HR (Hausner’s ratio), Carr’s index and AOR (angle of repose) had been decided for dried granules.

Bulk Density (ρB)

The precisely weighed quantity (W) of the granules was positioned in a ten mL graded cylinder, V0 (untapped quantity) was recorded and the ρB (bulk density) was obtained (g/mL) by utilizing the next equation:20

Tapped Density (ρT)

The ten mL graduated cylinder containing the precisely weighed amount (W) of ready granules had been tapped onto a tough floor until there was no additional change within the quantity. Then, the VT (tapped quantity) was recorded and ρT (tapped density) was decided by utilizing the beneath formulation:19

Carr’s Compressibility Index

Carr’s compressibility index was decided by utilizing the formulation:19

The place, ρT is tapped and ρB is the majority densities.

Hausner’s Ratio (HR)

The HR values had been decided by the formulation given beneath:19

The place, “ρT” is the tapped and “ρB” is the majority densities.

AOR (Angle of Repose)

Utilizing stabilized funnel methodology, granules (5 g) fashioned heap with “h” top and “r” i.e. radius of base. The AOR had been decided by equation:19,21

Compression of Ready Granules into Pill Dosage Kind

The granules ready are proven in Desk 1. They had been compressed to pill dosage type by a compression machine (ZP19, China) fitted with 11-mm biconcave punches for aceclofenac tablets.

Analysis of Fabricated Tablets

The post-compression properties (weight variation, % friability, hardness, disintegration time) of the ready tablets had been decided. The hardness of formulated ten tablets was decided utilizing Pharma check hardness check machine. The DT (disintegration time) of ready tablets was measured within the purified water maintaining temperature at 37±2°C, utilizing DT equipment (Mannequin: DT-0607, Curio) with disks. Drug contents of tablets had been evaluated as per HPLC process utilized by Rahim et al.22 Tablets’ friability was calculated for 20 tablets after completion of 100 revolutions within the Friabilator utilizing formulation:

The place, W1 is weight of tablets earlier than finishing rotations and W2 is ultimate weight after finishing revolutions.

Stability Research of Compressed Tablets

The formulated pill dosage type was evaluated for the in vitro dissolution by storing at accelerated temperature 40±2°C and RH 75%±5% and at room 30±2°C and maintaining the RH 65%±5% for 3 months.23

In vitro API Launch Research

The in vitro API launch research of each AC-N (aceclofenac nanosuspension) as granulating fluid and microsuspension-based tablets’ batches had been carried out utilizing dissolution equipment (USP Kind-2). The 0.1N hydrochloric acid containing 2% Tween 80 was used as dissolution medium at velocity of 75 rpm maintaining the temperature at 37±0.5°C. After 10 minutes, pattern of 5 mL, withdrawn as much as an hour, had been filtered by means of 0.02 µm syringe filter. The equal quantity (5 mL) of the medium was changed for sustaining sink circumstances.22,24 The amount of lively compound (aceclofenac) within the pattern was decided by HPLC as methodology utilized by Rahim et al.22

Launch Kinetics

To analyze the mechanism of drug launch from the formulated tablets, the drug launch knowledge had been fitted into zero-order, first-order, Higuchi and Korsmeyer’s equation. The Korsmeyer’s equation, Equation (A), describes the drug launch behaviour from the polymers.

The place,

Mt = the amount of drug launch at time “t”;

Mf = the amount of drug launch after infinite time;

ok = launch fee fixed incorporating structural and geometric traits of the pill;

n = the diffusional exponent indicating the mechanism of drug launch.

To make clear the discharge exponent for formulated tablets, the log worth of % drug launch was plotted in opposition to log time for every formulation in keeping with Equation (A).19

In vivo Bioavailability Research

The bioavailability research had been carried out in white albino rabbits (2.5–3.0 kg). Animals had been housed in wire cages, supplied meals and water freely as per protocols earlier talked about within the Supplies and Strategies part. Fabricated pill teams ACN-1 and ACN-2, marketed product and uncooked drug had been administered orally in a dose of 10 mg/kg to animals (n=6 rabbits in every group). Venous blood was collected within the heparinized tubes at totally different intervals (0, 0.5, 1, 1.5, 2, 4, 6, 8, 12 and 24 hrs) after oral administration. The blood samples had been centrifuged at 3000 rpm for 20 min to separate the plasma and saved at −20ºC. The plasma samples had been analyzed utilizing the HPLC methodology by Rahim et al.22 The chromatographic circumstances had been: cell part—methanol: 0.3% TEA pH 7.0 (60:40, v/v), Hypersil BDS C18 (250 cm×4.6 mm), 5μm column was used at 1.0 mL/min circulate fee, maintaining injection quantity 20 μL; at 25°C; Run time: 25 min; 275 nm as detection wavelength; and venlafaxine as inner normal. The pharmacokinetic parameters had been decided by PK options 2.0 non-compartmental pharmacokinetic evaluation.

Statistical Evaluation

All the outcomes got as imply ± normal deviation (SD), imply values had been in contrast utilizing ANOVA and variations had been thought of vital on the stage of P< 0.05 utilizing GraphPad Prism 5.

Outcomes and Discussions

Optimized AC-N (aceclofenac nanosuspension) was fabricated as per beforehand reported work utilizing “precipitation-ultrasonication methodology”.18 Then, the optimized batch was used as granulating fluid for conversion to the tablets’ formulations utilizing the AC-N and AC-M (aceclofenac suspension containing unprocessed/uncooked microparticles) as granulating fluid with different excipients. The optimized batch formulated with particle dimension discovered was 112±2.01 nm, maintaining the ultrasonic power enter at 200 watts with 15 min length and three a sec pause. The particle dimension of fabricated optimized batch of nanosuspension is proven in Figures 2 and 3A. All of the particles displayed in Determine 3B reveal well-defined morphology associated with crystalline materials. The nanosuspension was stabilized utilizing polymers/stabilizers, i.e. 1.0% (w/v) of every HPMC and PVP Okay-30 whereas 0.12% (w/v) SLS. The formulations of the tablets had been proven within the Desk 1.

Determine 2 Particle dimension distribution of aceclofenac nanosuspension.

Determine 3 Scanning electron micrographs of uncooked drug (A); transmission electron micrographs of drug nanoparticles ().

FTIR Spectra Evaluation

The FTIR research confirmed that the spectrum of uncooked drug compound (aceclofenac), aceclofenac nanosuspension and nanoformulation-based tablets are displayed in Determine 4A–D respectively. The uncooked AC offered distinctive peaks at 3317.3 cm−1 assigned to N–H stretching, 2936.6 cm−1 are on account of stretching of O–H, the height 1770.1 cm −1, 1714.7 cm−1 are assigned to C O stretching, band 1589.2 cm−1 is as a result of skeleton vibration of fragrant C C stretching, 1506.3 cm−1 is assigned to in airplane bending for N–H, band 1343.6 cm−1 is because of O–H in airplane bending, 1291.3 cm−1 (C–N fragrant amine), 964.4 cm−1 (O–H out airplane bending) and 750.3 cm−1. The nanosuspension mix exhibited spectra (cm−1) at 3317.9, 2936.8, 2310.7, 1770.1, 1506.4, 1344.1, 1291.0 and 943.0. Whereas the fabricated optimized pill batch exhibited distinct bands (cm−1) at 3317.9, 2971.7, 2900.8, 1770.7, 1715.8, 1507.3, 1343.5, 1291.2, 766.9. FTIR spectra outcomes confirmed a scarcity of any interplay between the aceclofenac and components employed within the nanoformulation in addition to in formulated tablets.

Determine 4 FT-IR of aceclofenac (A), ACN (B), ACN-T (C), and marketed tablets (D).

Powder X-Ray Diffractometry (P-XRD) and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC)

The DSC thermograms as displayed in Determine 5. The uncooked drug (i.e. aceclofenac), confirmed an endometrial peak at 154.49°C, conforming the melting level.1 Nanosuspension-based tablets and the ready nanosuspension of the chosen drug candidate indicated a slight change of melting level to 154.12 and 153.67°C respectively. The distinction within the particle dimension among the many samples is the main trigger of those alterations. The presence of stabilizers’ traces on the floor of particles of the drug compound might ends in the peaks’ broadening.25,26 Therefore, no new peak within the DSC thermogram fashioned, proving the shortage of any chemical response happening.

Determine 5 DSC thermogram of uncooked AC, AC-NT and AC-N.

The outcomes obtained from P-XRD displayed that the ready nanosuspension of the drug (aceclofenac) had been crystalline in nature as proven in Determine 6. Nevertheless, peaks’ intensities of nanoparticles had been comparatively low to the uncooked drug, this will likely the impact of nanonization.

Determine 6 PXRD patterns of uncooked drug, bodily combination and drug nanosuspension.

The smaller PS (particle dimension) and presence of amorphous stabilizers in hint quantities will be the purpose for the peaks’ discount of AC nanoparticles as displayed within the Determine 6.27–29 Furthermore, the X-ray diffractogram of the PM (bodily combination) and nanosuspension-based tablets confirmed a dominant peak as proven in Determine 6, whereas the peaks for the small quantity of the used stabilizers and different components within the formulation of tablets had been amorphous in nature and didn’t seem.

Pre-Compression Parameters of Formulation Blends

The granules of ACN-1 and ACN-2 (nanosuspension-based tablets) confirmed the values of angle of repose ranges from 27.25±1.05 to twenty-eight.42±1.25 whereas the batch ACM-3 (microsuspension-based batch) granules confirmed the values of 29.45±1.45. All of the formulation blends offered glorious to good circulate properties.30 The ready granules exhibited bulk density (mg/mL) worth 0.541±0.01 for ACN-1, 0.552±0.01 for ACN-2 and for ACM-3 outcomes 0.574±0.01. The tapped density (mg/mL) recorded for ACN-1 was 0.632±0.01, ACN-2 was 0.662±0.01 and ACM-3 was 0.692±0.01, displaying that the ready granules have good packability. The Carr’s index values of the ACN-1 and ACN-2 batches vary from 15.18±0.98 to 16.69±1.28 whereas the microsuspension-based granules (ACM-3) resulted in a worth of 16.94±0.58, proving that each one batches exhibited good compressibility. The nanosuspension-based granules had been discovered to be Hausner’s ratio values starting from 1.17±0.01 to 1.19±0.01 and 1.20±0.01 for the micronized/unprocessed batch, these outcomes offered good to honest circulate property exhibited by the formulations. All these outcomes are proven in Desk 2.

Desk 2 Pre-compression parameters of varied blends

Compression of Granules into Pill Dosage Kind

The totally different formulation batches (ACN-1, ACN-2, ACM-3) of tablets resulted in hardness (kg) values from 6.65±0.52 to 9.25±0.25, common weight 199.57±1.42 mg to 200.15±1.75 mg and friability values from 0.46±0.42% to 0.62±0.31%. The DT (disintegration instances) recorded had been 6.45±1.55 for ACN-1, 7.24±1.36 for ACN-2 and 9.55±1.16 for ACM-3. The compressed batches confirmed values of carried out assessments complied with official limits, as proven in Desk 3. All of the formulated batches had uniformity in weight which complied with USP specs, i.e. ±7.5% allowed restrict.31,32

Desk 3 Submit-compression analysis of AC tablets

In vitro Launch of Aceclofenac Tablets

The in vitro API launch knowledge offered a considerable enchancment in dissolution fee of batch ACN-1 compared to marketed tablets and unprocessed aceclofenac-based pill formulation. The graph confirmed that within the first 30 min, greater than 85% of ACN-1 had been dissolved in comparison with 75.89% for ACN-2, 51.06% for unprocessed micronized drug formulation (i.e. ACM-3), 59.56% for the M. Tablets and 29.41% for uncooked drug. Boosted in vitro launch fee of ACN-1 was noticed whereas evaluating to ACN-2, unprocessed drug containing formulation i.e. ACM-3, M. Tablets and uncooked drug, all these outcomes are illustrated in Determine 7. The solubility of drug compound can be enhanced when the particle dimension of the drug is lowered to nanosized vary as described by Xia et al.33 The discharge knowledge confirmed the P<0.001 in contrast with uncooked drug.

Determine 7 In vitro dissolution of formulations and M. Tablets. Values signify imply±SD, n=3. ***P<0.001 in contrast with uncooked drug.

It has evidently been confirmed and assist within the growth of strong dosage kinds BCS Class-II drug compounds i.e. poorly soluble drug candidates.34

Launch Kinetics

Two batches, i.e. ACM-3 and marketed product, obey zero order kinetics with values of r2 0.9939 and 0.9874 respectively. Whereas the formulation batches ACN-1 and ACN-2 observe first order kinetics with values of r2 0.9680 and 0.9615 respectively. Fickian (Case-I) launch was obeyed by ACN-1 and marketed product, whereas ACN-2 and ACM-3 obey the Non-Fickian sort launch habits. The worth of “n” equal to 0.45 signifies Fickian (Case-I) launch; greater than 0.45 however lower than 0.89 for non-Fickian (anomalous) launch and “n” greater than 0.89 signifies tremendous case-II sort of launch. Case-II refers back to the erosion of the polymeric chain whereas non-Fickian (anomalous transport) illustrate a mix of each diffusion and erosion controlled-drug launch as proven in Desk 4.31

Desk 4 In vitro launch kinetics of fabricated tablets

Bioavailability Research

The in vivo examine of aceclofenac nanosuspension-based tablets (ACN-1, ACN-2) confirmed an enhanced absorption compared to the marketed drug formulation, as displayed in Determine 8. The Cmax and AUC0→24 of ACN-1 and ACN-2 had been 1.53-fold, 1.48-fold and a pair of.23-fold, 2.0-fold larger than that of the marketed drug product (P<0.001), as displayed in Desk 5. Whereas, the Cmax and AUC0→24 of ACN-1 and ACN-2 had been 1.74-fold, 1.68-fold and a pair of.3-fold, 2.21-fold larger than that of the uncooked drug (**P<0.01).

Desk 5 Pharmacokinetic parameters from the plasma focus versus time

Determine 8 Common plasma drug focus versus time profiles after oral administration of formulations to rabbits (n=6), ***P<0.001 in contrast with uncooked drug.

The improved bioavailability of aceclofenac nanosuspension-based tablets after oral administration will probably be owed to the sooner absorption of the aceclofenac nanosuspension used within the formulation.22

Stability Research of Fabricated Pill Dosage Kind

The soundness and dissolution of the fabricated tablets of aceclofenac fabricated by using AC nanosuspension within the type of a granulating liquid, was carried out at each accelerated (40°C/75% Relative Humidity) in addition to room temperature circumstances (25°C/60% Relative Humidity) for 3 months. The in vitro dissolution fee for fabricated strong dosage type (tablets) was steady at aforementioned storage circumstances, as represented in Determine 9.

Determine 9 Stability of ACN-1 batch formulation at totally different storage circumstances.

Therefore, it’s evidently proved from the outcomes of in vitro dissolution profiles that the optimized nanosuspension-based tablets confirmed exceptional improved dissolution fee in comparison with the microsuspension-based (uncooked drug) tablets. The ACN-1 batch tablets (as depicted in Determine 10) confirmed stability at two totally different circumstances (30°C/65percentRH, 40°C/75percentRH).

Determine 10 Visible picture of ACN-1 batch tablets.


The carried out analysis proved that aceclofenac tablets could be ready utilizing optimized nanosuspension as granulating fluid and micronized drug with different appropriate excipients. The steady formulated tablets with improved in vitro dissolution and oral improved bioavailability in rabbits is achieved by utilizing optimized nanosuspension as granulating fluid in comparison with micronized drug-based and marketed tablets. The Cmax and AUC0→24 of ACN-1 and ACN-2 had been 1.53-fold, 1.48-fold and a pair of.23-fold, 2.0-fold larger than that of the marketed drug product (P<0.001). The research proposed utilizing comparable strategies for different poorly-soluble drug compounds to enhance the in vitro fee of dissolution and in the end their oral in vivo bioavailability.


The authors lengthen their appreciation to the Deanship of Scientific Analysis at King Saud College, Saudi Arabia for funding this work by means of analysis group no. RG-1440-009. We’re grateful to Division of Pharmacy, Sarhad College of Science and Data Expertise Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan and Division of Pharmacy, College of Malakand, Chakdara, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan for offering services.


Umar Farooq is an worker of Legacy Pharmaceutical (Pvt.) Ltd. The authors report no different potential conflicts of curiosity for this work.


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