Synthesis of Cubical and Star-shaped Calcium Carbonate Microparticles and Their Effect on Nile Blue Dye Loading

Luke Jaskowski, Anna Grace Head, Nirzari Gupta, Dr. Diane Tucker, and Dr. Jacqueline Nikles, Department of Chemistry, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1720 2nd Avenue South Birmingham, AL 35294

Targeted drug delivery has proven to be an increasingly relevant field with its recent emergence in fighting disease, especially to reduce toxicity and maximize control of treatments. Past research indicates that calcium carbonate (CaCO₃) microparticles show promise in this field as inexpensive and efficient drug carriers, capable of adsorbing a variety of essential medicines. In this study, we intended to analyze the effect of shape on microparticle carrying capacity. We synthesized cubical and star-shaped CaCO₃ microparticles under rapid stirring to control size and nucleation rate. We subsequently loaded the microparticles with Nile blue dye, chosen for its structural similarity to relevant pharmaceuticals and high absorbance in the visible light range. We then mimicked release by diffusion through dialysis, taking samples at different timepoints throughout loading and release to determine which shape to be the more effective carrier. Fluorescence microscopy allowed us to confirm synthesized shape, and UV-vis spectroscopy measured absorbance of each timepoint sample, showing star-shaped to have higher loading capacity and faster release rate. This is due to its larger surface area as evidenced by microscopy, which demonstrates its potential for future application as a drug carrier and its implications in carrying drugs structurally similar to Nile blue dye.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Luke Jaskowski

Institution: University of Alabama at Birmingham

Type: Poster

Subject: Chemistry

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 4
Date/Time: Tue 11:00am-12:00pm
Session Number: 3532