Thursday, November 20, 2014

Abstract-A Tape Method for Fast Characterization and Identification of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients in the 2-18 THz Spectral Range
In order to find counterfeit drugs quickly and reliably, we have developed ‘tape method’ a transmission spectroscopic terahertz (THz) measurement technique and compared it with a standard attenuated total reflection (ATR) THz spectroscopic measurement. We used well-known training samples, which include commercial paracetamol and aspirin tablets to check the validity of these two measurement techniques. In this study, the spectral features of some active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), such as aspirin and paracetamol are characterized for identification purpose. This work covers a wide THz spectral range namely, 2-18 THz. This proposed simple but novel technique, the tape method, was used for characterizing API and identifying their presence in their dosage forms. By comparing the spectra of the APIs to their dosage forms (powder samples), all distinct fingerprints present in the APIs are also present in their respective dosage forms. The positions of the spectral features obtained with the ATR techniques were akin to that obtained from the tape method. The ATR and the tape method therefore, complement each other. The presence of distinct fingerprints in this spectral range has highlighted the possibility of developing fast THz sensors for the screening of pharmaceuticals. It is worth noting that, the ATR method is applicable to flat faced tablets whereas the tape method is suitable for powders in general (e.g. curved surface tablets that require milling before measurement). Finally, we have demonstrated that ATR techniques can be used to screen counterfeit antimalarial tablets.

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