Polymer adhesion predictions for oral dosage forms to enhance administration safety. Part 3: Review of in vitro and in vivo methods used to predict esophageal adhesion and transit time.

Nélio Drumond, Sven Stegemann*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The oral cavity is frequently used to administer pharmaceutical drug products. This route of administration is seen as the most accessible for the majority of patients and supports an independent therapy management. For current oral dosage forms under development, the prediction of their unintended mucoadhesive properties and esophageal transit profiles would contribute for future administration safety, as concerns regarding unintended adhesion of solid oral dosage forms (SODF) during oro-esophageal transit still remain. Different in vitro methods that access mucoadhesion of polymers and pharmaceutical preparations have been proposed over the years. The same methods might be used to test non-adhesive systems and contribute for developing safe-to-swallow technologies. Previous works have already investigated the suitability of non-animal derived in vitro methods to assess such properties. The aim of this work was to review the in vitro methodology available in the scientific literature that used animal esophageal tissue to evaluate mucoadhesion and esophageal transit of pharmaceutical preparations. Furthermore, in vivo methodology is also discussed. Since none of the in vitro methods developed are able to mimic the complex swallowing process and oro-esophageal transit, in vivo studies in humans remain as the gold standard.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-314
Number of pages12
JournalColloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2018


  • polymer coatings
  • Adhesive mixtures
  • in vivo

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions(all)

Fields of Expertise

  • Human- & Biotechnology

Treatment code (Nähere Zuordnung)

  • Review

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