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Possibilities of Fucoidan Utilization in the Development of Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms

Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Medical University of Białystok, Mickiewicza 2c, 15-222 Białystok, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(8), 458;
Received: 11 July 2019 / Revised: 27 July 2019 / Accepted: 2 August 2019 / Published: 5 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Polysaccharides in Pharmaceutical Applications)
PDF [1101 KB, uploaded 5 August 2019]


Fucoidan is a polysaccharide built from L-fucose molecules. The main source of this polysaccharide is the extracellular matrix of brown seaweed (Phaeophyta), but it can be also isolated from invertebrates such as sea urchins (Echinoidea) and sea cucumbers (Holothuroidea). Interest in fucoidan is related to its broad biological activity, including possible antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antiviral or antithrombotic effects. The potential application of fucoidan in the pharmaceutical technology is also due to its ionic nature. The negative charge of the molecule results from the presence of sulfate residues in the C-2 and C-4 positions, occasionally in C-3, allowing the formation of complexes with other oppositely charged molecules. Fucoidan is non-toxic, biodegradable and biocompatible compound approved by Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) category as food ingredient. Fucoidan plays an important role in the pharmaceutical technology, so in this work aspects concerning its pharmaceutical characteristics and designing of various dosage forms (nanoparticles, liposomes, microparticles, and semisolid formulations) with fucoidan itself and with its combinations with other polymers or components that give a positive charge were reviewed. Advantages and limitations of fucoidan utilization in the pharmaceutical technology were also discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: polysaccharide; marine-derived; fucoidan; pharmaceutical formulations; multifunctional polymer; fucospheres polysaccharide; marine-derived; fucoidan; pharmaceutical formulations; multifunctional polymer; fucospheres

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Citkowska, A.; Szekalska, M.; Winnicka, K. Possibilities of Fucoidan Utilization in the Development of Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms. Mar. Drugs 2019, 17, 458.

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