Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

Monoclinic paracetamol vs. paracetamol-4,4'-bipyridine co-crystal; what is the difference? a charge density study

Du, Jonathan, Lai, Felcia, Váradi, Linda, Williams, Peter, Groundwater, Paul, Platts, James A. ORCID:, Hibbs, David and Overgaard, Jacob 2018. Monoclinic paracetamol vs. paracetamol-4,4'-bipyridine co-crystal; what is the difference? a charge density study. Crystals 8 (1) , -. 10.3390/cryst8010046

[thumbnail of crystals-08-00046-v2.pdf]
PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (6MB) | Preview


Paracetamol (PCM) has two well-documented polymorphic forms at room temperature; monoclinic Form I is more stable than the other orthorhombic Form II. Form II exhibits improved tabletting properties compared to Form I due to low shearing forces; however, difficulties in its manufacture have limited its use in industrial manufacture. Previous studies have found that the introduction of a co-former to form co-crystals would allow the PCM molecule to exist in a conformation similar to that of the orthorhombic form while being more stable at room temperature. Experimental charge density analysis of the paracetamol-4,4′-bipyridine (PCM-44BP) co-crystal system, and its constituent molecules, has been carried out to examine the forces that drive the formation and stabilisation of the co-crystal, while allowing PCM to maintain a packing motif similar to that found in Form II. It is hoped studies on this well-known compound will help apply the knowledge gained to other drug molecules that are less successful. The PCM molecules in the co-crystal were found to exhibit similar packing motifs to that found in Form I, however, intercalation of the 44BP molecule between the PCM layers resulted in a shallower angle between molecular planes, which could result in the required lateral shear. Topological analysis identified more weak interactions in the co-crystal compared to the individual molecules, thus allowing for greater stability as evidenced by the lattice energies. Weak interactions in the PCM-44BP co-crystal were found to range in strength from 4.08–84.33 kJ mol−1, and this variety allowed the PCM-44BP planes to be held together, while a weak π–π interaction (15.14 kJ mol−1) allowed lateral shear to occur, thus mimicking the planes found in Form II PCM and offering the possibility of improved tabletting properties. A comparison of integrated atomic charges between partitions of the PCM molecules in the single and co-crystal found that the hydroxyl and amide groups were involved in greater hydrogen bonding in the co-crystal, resulting in a charge redistribution across the molecule evidenced by a larger molecular dipole moment (µ = 12.34D). These findings, in addition to the co-crystal having the largest lattice energy, form a potential basis with which to predict that the co-crystal exhibits improved solubility and stability profiles. It is anticipated that these findings will contribute to improvements in the formulation and other physical properties of PCM and other pharmaceutical compounds.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Chemistry
Advanced Research Computing @ Cardiff (ARCCA)
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 2073-4352
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 23 January 2018
Date of Acceptance: 15 January 2018
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 04:36

Citation Data

Cited 6 times in Scopus. View in Scopus. Powered By Scopus® Data

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics