Chapter 3

Gums and Mucilages Based Mucoadhesive Biopolymers

Inderbir Singh and Pradeep Kumar


In recent years, there have been extensive developments associated with the application of natural, derivatized and semi-synthetic biopolymers for the localized and prolonged delivery of active pharmaceutical ingredients at the mucosal interface. Naturallyderived gums and mucilages are biomacromolecular assemblies employed for traditional (films and tablets) as well as advanced (nanomedicine and conjugated systems) bioactive delivery paradigms. These natural biomaterials are stable, easily available, economical, non toxic and associated with less regulatory issues as compared to their synthetic counterpart. Additionally, these biopolymers could be easily tailored via graft-polymerization, functionalization, conjugation, and polyelectrolyte formation in order to render specific properties such as mucoadhesivity. In this chapter, gums and mucilages along with their modified derivatives have been discussed accompanied by gums- and mucilages-derived mucoadhesive drug delivery systems. Additionally, the mechanistic phenomena dictating their mucoadhesive performance will be described with special reference to the constituent functional groups and their role in muco-tethering and -penetration. A representative list of gums and mucilages include, but not limited to, alginic acid, agar, carrageenans, and laminarin (marine origin); gum arabic, gum karaya, locust bean gum, gum ghatti, khaya gum, tragacanth, albizia gum, guar gum, starch, cellulose, larch gum and pectin (plant origin); and curdian, pullulan, xanthan, dextran, zanflo, emulsan, Baker’s yeast glycan, lentinan, schizophyllan, scleroglucan and krestin (microbial origin).

Total Pages: 54-75 (22)

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