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Inulin has been applied in Inulin-Eudragit RS (Inu-ERS) coatings as the component responsible for degradation by human microbiota. However, studies on how bacterial enzymes can degrade polysaccharides like inulin imbedded in water insoluble polymers like Eudragit RS are still elusive. The present work aims at elucidating the complex process of enzyme triggered biodegradation of inulin with various molecular weights in isolated films with Eudragit RS. The ratio of inulin to Eudragit RS was varied to create films with different degree of hydrophilicity. The phase behavior study revealed that blends of inulin and Eudragit RS are phase separated systems. The film permeability was studied by determination of the permeability coefficient of caffeine and the fraction of inulin that was released from the films in a buffer solution with or without inulinase was quantified. Together with the morphology characterization of the Inu-ERS films with and without incubation in the enzyme solution, these results suggest that the action of the enzyme was only limited to the fraction of inulin released in the buffer solution. Inulin fully embedded in the Eudragit RS matrix was not degraded. The permeation of the model drug caffeine occurred in the phase-separated film as a result of pores formed as a consequence of inulin release. The inulin to Eudragit RS blend ratio and the molecular weight of inulin affected the percolation threshold, the release of inulin, the morphology of the film formed thereafter and the connectivity of the formed water channels, thus influencing the drug permeation properties. Copyright © 2023 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Jiabi Ouyang, Sien Dedroog, Guy Van den Mooter. New insights on the effects of blend composition on the biodegradation and permeability of Inulin-Eudragit RS film coatings for colon drug delivery. European journal of pharmaceutics and biopharmaceutics : official journal of Arbeitsgemeinschaft fur Pharmazeutische Verfahrenstechnik e.V. 2023 Aug;189:28-35

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PMID: 37270158

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