Next Article in Journal / Special Issue
Polymers for DNA Delivery
Previous Article in Journal / Special Issue
Macromolecules Applied to Pharmaceutical Chemistry
Molecules 2005, 10(1), 6-33; doi:10.3390/10010006

Scleroglucan: A Versatile Polysaccharide for Modified Drug Delivery

1,* , 2, 3, 1, 2 and 1
1 Department of Chemistry and Technology of Biologically Active Compounds, University of Rome “La Sapienza”, P.le Aldo Moro, 00185 Rome, Italy 2 Department of Sciences and Chemical Technologies, University of Rome “Tor Vergata”, Via de la Ricerca Scientifica, 00133 Rome, Italy 3 Department of Chemical Engineering, Environment and Raw Materials, University of Trieste, P.le Europa 1, 34127 Trieste, Italy
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 May 2004 / Accepted: 8 July 2004 / Published: 31 January 2005
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Macromolecules Applied to Pharmaceutical Chemistry)


Scleroglucan is a natural polysaccharide, produced by fungi of the genus Sclerotium, that has been extensively studied for various commercial applications (secondary oil recovery, ceramic glazes, food, paints, etc.) and also shows several interesting pharmacological properties. This review focuses its attention on the use of scleroglucan, and some derivatives, in the field of pharmaceutics and in particular for the formulation of modified-release dosage forms. The reported investigations refer mainly to the following topics: natural scleroglucan suitable for the preparation of sustained release tablets and ocular formulations; oxidized and crosslinked scleroglucan used as a matrix for dosage forms sensitive to environmental conditions; co-crosslinked scleroglucan/gellan whose delivery rate can be affected by calcium ions. Furthermore, a novel hydrogel obtained with this polysaccharide and borate ions is described, and the particular structure of this hydrogel network has been interpreted in terms of conformational analysis and molecular dynamics. Profound attention is devoted to the mechanisms involved in drug release from the tested dosage forms that depend, according to the specific preparation, on swelling and/or diffusion. Experimental data are also discussed on the basis of a mathematical approach that allows a better understanding of the behavior of the tested polymeric materials.
Keywords: Scleroglucan; Modified release; Hydrogel. Scleroglucan; Modified release; Hydrogel.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Share & Cite This Article

Further Mendeley | CiteULike
Export to BibTeX |
EndNote |
MDPI and ACS Style

Coviello, T.; Palleschi, A.; Grassi, M.; Matricardi, P.; Bocchinfuso, G.; Alhaique, F. Scleroglucan: A Versatile Polysaccharide for Modified Drug Delivery. Molecules 2005, 10, 6-33.

View more citation formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

For more information on the journal, click here


[Return to top]
Molecules EISSN 1420-3049 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert