DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences

, Volume 27, Issue 1, pp 295–305 | Cite as

Adaptation of hard gelatin capsules for oral delivery of aqueous radiopharmaceuticals

  • Samia Mohamed Omar
  • Rania Safaa Abdel-RashidEmail author
  • Mohamed Kamal AlAssaly
  • Tamer M. SakrEmail author
Research article



Oral administration of Iodine−131 (I−131) solutions causes high risk of contamination for patients and dispensers. The objective of the study was to adapt hard gelatin capsules (HGCs) for filling with radiopharmaceutical solutions without deformation.


Polystyrene (PS) internally lining films with different thicknesses were used to protect HGCs. The insulated HGCs were evaluated for their physicochemical characteristics and rupturing time in different dissolution media. HGCs internally lined with PS were examined for withstand loading with different volumes and radioactivities of I−131 solutions. Radioactivity release was studied in deionized water and acidic media. Quality control of released I−131 was inspected for radiochemical purities.


There was a directly proportion between PS lining thickness and stability of HGCs after filling with 500 μl aqueous methylene blue solution. HGCs internally lined with PS 100 μm thickness withstand deformation for ˃ two months; however showed fast in-vitro rupturing time in different dissolution media. Internally lined HGCs loaded with different volumes and radioactivities of I−131 solutions resisted for one week without radioactive leakage. Yet, revealed complete release of I−131 after 20 min in dissolution media with great radiochemical purity.


The study promises safely I−131 aqueous solution delivery via adapted HGCs.

Graphical abstract

Oral administration of radiopharmaceuticals


Hard gelatin capsules Iodine−131 solution Polystyrene Adaptation Lining 



Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy


Gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy


Hard gelatin capsules


Radioactive Iodine−131 solutions


Methylene blue




Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of PharmacyAhram Canadian UniversityGizaEgypt
  2. 2.Department of Pharmaceutics and Industrial Pharmacy Faculty of PharmacyHelwan UniversityCairoEgypt
  3. 3.Ministry of Interior, Medical ServicesCairoEgypt
  4. 4.Faculty of Pharmacy, October University of Modern Sciences and ArtsCairoEgypt
  5. 5.Radioactive Isotopes and Generators, Atomic Energy AuthorityCairoEgypt

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