Pharmaceutical Research

, Volume 34, Issue 2, pp 365–377 | Cite as

Denatured Whey Protein Powder as a New Matrix Excipient: Design and Evaluation of Mucoadhesive Tablets for Sustained Drug Release Applications

  • Hassana Hsein
  • Ghislain Garrait
  • Fahima Tamani
  • Eric Beyssac
  • Valérie Hoffart
Research Paper



In earlier study, we proposed denatured whey protein (DWP) powder obtained by atomization as a new excipient to promote oral drug delivery. In this work, we evaluate the possibility to formulate tablets based on DWP powders and to characterize their role as a matrix mucoadhesive excipient.


Tablets containing increased amount of DWP (10 to 30%) were produced by direct compression after mixing with theophylline, microcrystalline cellulose, Aerosil® and magnesium stearate. Dissolution behaviors of obtained tablets were evaluated in different USP buffers (pH 1.2, 4.5 and 6.8) and in simulated gastric and intestinal fluids and mechanisms analyzed by multiple mathematical models. Swelling, erosion and mucoadhesion were also evaluated. Finally, release and absorption were studied in the artificial digestive system (TIM 1).


Tablets based on DWP and containing 300 mg of theophylline were obtained by direct compression. These tablets exhibited controlled release driven by diffusion starting from 15% DWP content whatever the pH studied. They also showed a great extent of swelling and water uptake while matrix weight loss was limited. Addition of enzymes accelerated drug release which became governed by erosion according to Peppas model.


The present study shows that DWP powders can be successfully used as a pharmaceutical excipient, and in particular as a matrix mucoadhesive controlled release tablets.


controlled release denatured whey protein matrix tablet swelling theophylline 



Artificial digestive system


Compressibility index


Denatured whey protein


Hausner ratio


Microcrystalline cellulose


Native whey protein


Whey protein


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Univ Clermont 1, UFR Pharmacie, EA4678, Laboratoire de BiopharmacieClermont-FerrandFrance

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