Raman micro-spectroscopic mapping is utilized to analyze pharmaceutical tablets containing a low concentration (0.5% w/w) of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API). The domain sizes and spatial distributions of the API and the major excipients are obtained. Domain size of the API is found to be dependent upon the particle size distribution of the ingoing API material, making the Raman maps good indicators of the source of API used in tablet manufacturing. Multivariate classification was performed to simultaneously check for the presence of two undesired API polymorphs within tablets. Raman mapping was demonstrated capable of detecting in the tablet matrix as little as 10% form conversion of the low-dosage (0.5% w/w) API, which is equivalent to detection of a 0.05% w/w polymorphic impurity. Overall, the information provided by Raman micro-spectroscopic mapping was found to have potential utility for manufacturing process optimization or predictive stability assessments.
Mark J. Henson and Lin Zhang, "Drug Characterization in Low Dosage Pharmaceutical Tablets Using Raman Microscopic Mapping," Appl. Spectrosc. 60, 1247-1255 (2006)