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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Oil-In-Water Microemulsions for Thymol Solubilization

Departamento de Química Física, Facultad de Ciencias Químicas, Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Ciudad Universitaria s/n, 28040 Madrid, Spain
Instituto Pluridisciplinar, Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Paseo Juan XXIII, 1, 28040 Madrid, Spain
Instituto de Ecología y Desarrollo Sustentable (INEDES, CONICET-UNLu), Ruta 5 y Avenida Constitución - Luján (6700), Buenos Aires, Argentina
Centro de Investigación en Sanidad Vegetal (CISaV), Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias y Forestales, UNLP, Calles 60 y 119, La Plata 1900, Argentina
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Colloids Interfaces 2019, 3(4), 64;
Received: 29 October 2019 / Revised: 27 November 2019 / Accepted: 30 November 2019 / Published: 2 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Emulsion Applications)
Essential oil compounds (EOCs) are molecules with well-known antimicrobial and antipest activity. However, such molecules possess limited solubility in water, making their handling difficult. This work aimed to enhance the distribution of a solid essential oil compound, thymol, using oil-in-water (o/w) microemulsions for its solubilization. The use of mixtures formed by an alkyl polyglucoside (APG) and soybean lecithin (SL) allowed for stabilization of the o/w microemulsions in a broad range of compositions, with the total concentration of the mixture of the two surfactants (APG+SL) and the APG:SL ratio both being essential for controlling the nature of the obtained dispersions. The microemulsions obtained using oleic acid as the oil phase and with compositions far from those corresponding to the onset of the emulsion region showed a good efficiency for thymol solubilization. This is an advantage from a stability point of view, as well as for ease of thymol preparation. The present work opens new alternatives for designing eco-sustainable formulations for EOC solubilization, with the possibility of preparing the formulations at the place of use, thereby saving transport costs and reducing the emission of pollutants.
Keywords: microemulsions; essential oil; phase diagram; dynamic light scattering; solubilization; fluorescence spectroscopy microemulsions; essential oil; phase diagram; dynamic light scattering; solubilization; fluorescence spectroscopy
MDPI and ACS Style

Fernández-Peña, L.; Gutiérrez-Muro, S.; Guzmán, E.; Lucia, A.; Ortega, F.; Rubio, R.G. Oil-In-Water Microemulsions for Thymol Solubilization. Colloids Interfaces 2019, 3, 64.

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