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Conventional rate Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) has been used for many years as a tool in the analysis of pharmaceutical materials. In recent years an extension of the technique to include fast heating and cooling rates has become more prevalent. Broadly termed Fast-Scan DSC, this review examines the current applications of this technique to the characterisation and selection of pharmaceutical materials. Its increasing use encompasses the characterisation of amorphousness in crystalline materials, the characterisation of polymorphs and polymorphic transitions, the solubility of drugs in polymers, and characterisation of dosage forms. Notwithstanding the advantages of analytical speed in analytical turnover, the review emphasises the advantages of Fast-Scan DSC in its sensitivity which allows the separation of overlapping thermal events, the reduction it provides in degradation during the scanning process and its role in determining solubility in waxy and polymeric based systems. A comparison of the uses of Fast-Scan DSC to modulated DSC techniques and localised thermal analysis is also given. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


James L Ford, Timothy E Mann. Fast-Scan DSC and its role in pharmaceutical physical form characterisation and selection. Advanced drug delivery reviews. 2012 Apr;64(5):422-30

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PMID: 22178405

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