Enhancement and restriction of chain motion in polymer networks

Sarah P. Hudson, Eleanor Owens, Helen Hughes, Peter McLoughlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Sevelamer carbonate, a polymeric drug, adsorbs phosphate ions from the gastro intestine of patients suffering from chronic kidney disease. Polymer chain mobility becomes critical during its manufacture and storage. How the polymer chain mobility in sevelamer carbonate is quantitatively controlled by small molecular species, in this case by water molecules and bicarbonate anions, is demonstrated here. Spin-lattice relaxation times of the protons in the hydrogel, detected by solid state NMR, are indicative of mobility within the polymer. They decreased with increasing water content but increased as the bicarbonate anion content increased. As the water content increased, the glass transition temperature decreased but increasing the bicarbonate anion content had the opposite effect. FTIR analysis indicated that the anions were involved in bonding while the water molecules were not. The stability and physicochemical properties of polymers during storage and formulation depend on the polymeric structure and the dynamic behaviour of the polymer chains.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-41
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Pharmaceutics
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jul 2012


  • Anion
  • Hydrogen bonding
  • Mobility
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Polymer
  • Relaxation


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