Acidity constants in methanol/water mixtures of polycarboxylic acids used in drug salt preparations: Potentiometric determination of aqueous pKa values of quetiapine formulated as hemifumarate

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The acidic dissociation constants in a number of methanol/water mixtures of mono and polycarboxylic acids commonly used in the preparation of drug salts were determined. These solvent mixtures are usually used to determine the pKa of drugs of low aqueous solubility. However, when these drugs are prepared in salt form, the acid–base equilibria of both the basic drug and the counter-anion are involved in the potentiometric titration curves. In these instances, the inclusion of the pKa of acids as constant values in the curve fitting provides easy computation of the drug pKa without the need of any previous step to get the free base. As an application example, the aqueous pKa values of the quetiapine formulated as hemifumarate (Seroquel) were estimated by extrapolation from the experimental pKa in several methanol/water mixtures, which were then calculated according to the suitable constants of fumaric acid. The estimated aqueous pKa values of quetiapine are compared with those directly obtained in aqueous solution by potentiometry and by capillary electrophoresis.

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