Alginate nanoparticles protect ferrous from oxidation: Potential iron delivery system

Int J Pharm. 2016 Nov 20;513(1-2):404-409. doi: 10.1016/j.ijpharm.2016.09.053. Epub 2016 Sep 19.


A novel, efficient delivery system for iron (Fe2+) was developed using the alginate biopolymer. Iron loaded alginate nanoparticles were synthesized by a controlled ionic gelation method and was characterized with respect to particle size, zeta potential, morphology and encapsulation efficiency. Successful loading was confirmed with Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy and Thermogravimetric Analysis. Electron energy loss spectroscopy study corroborated the loading of ferrous into the alginate nanoparticles. Iron encapsulation (70%) was optimized at 0.06% Fe (w/v) leading to the formation of iron loaded alginate nanoparticles with a size range of 15-30nm and with a negative zeta potential (-38mV). The in vitro release studies showed a prolonged release profile for 96h. Release of iron was around 65-70% at pH of 6 and 7.4 whereas it was less than 20% at pH 2.The initial burst release upto 8h followed zero order kinetics at all three pH values. All the release profiles beyond 8h best fitted the Korsmeyer-Peppas model of diffusion. Non Fickian diffusion was observed at pH 6 and 7.4 while at pH 2 Fickian diffusion was observed.

Keywords: Alginate nanoparticles; Anemia; Bioavailability; Calcium chloride (PubChem CID: 5284359); Ferrous sulfate; Ferrous sulphate (PubChem CID: 24393); Iron loaded nanocomposite; Sodium alginate (PubChem CID: 5102882); Sorbitanmonooleate (PubChem CID: 9920342); l-Ascorbic acid (PubChemCID: 54670067).

MeSH terms

  • Alginates / chemistry*
  • Diffusion
  • Drug Carriers / chemistry*
  • Ferrous Compounds / chemistry*
  • Glucuronic Acid / chemistry
  • Hexuronic Acids / chemistry
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Iron / chemistry
  • Kinetics
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Nanoparticles / ultrastructure
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared


  • Alginates
  • Drug Carriers
  • Ferrous Compounds
  • Hexuronic Acids
  • ferrous sulfate
  • Glucuronic Acid
  • Iron