Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation




Pharmaceutical Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Eric J. Munson


Many pharmaceutical compounds being developed in recent years are poorly soluble in water. This has led to insufficient oral bioavailability of many compounds in vitro. The amorphous formulation is one of the promising techniques to increase the oral bioavailability of these poorly water-soluble compounds. However, an amorphous drug substance is inherently unstable because it is a high energy form. In order to increase the physical stability, the amorphous drug is often formulated with a suitable polymer to form an amorphous solid dispersion. Previous research has suggested that the formation of an intimately mixed drug-polymer mixture contributes to the stabilization of the amorphous drug compound. The goal of this research is to better understand the role of miscibility, molecular interactions and mobility on the physical stability of amorphous solid dispersions. Methods were developed to detect different degrees of miscibility on nanometer scale and to quantify the extent of hydrogen-bonding interactions between the drug and the polymer. Miscibility, hydrogen-bonding interactions and molecular mobility were correlated with physical stability during a six-month period using three model systems. Overall, this research provides molecular-level insights into many factors that govern the physical stability of amorphous solid dispersions which can lead to a more effective design of stable amorphous formulations.