Properties of microcrystalline cellulose obtained from coconut (Cocos nucifera) husk

  • F O Ohwoavworhua
  • O O Kunle
Keywords: Coconut fruit fibre, microcrystalline cellulose, powder properties


This study was aimed at developing a pharmaceutical grade microcrystalline cellulose from coconut fruit husk fibre as a tablet excipient. The microcrystalline cellulose coded CH-MCC, was obtained from coconut (Cocos nucifera) fruit husk fibre by a two-stage sodium hydroxide delignification process followed by sodium hypochlorite bleaching and acid hydrolysis. CH-MCC was examined for its physicochemical and powder properties. The powder properties of CH-MCC were compared to those of best commercial microcrystalline cellulose grade, Avicel PH 101. The extraction yield of CH-MCC was approximately 19%. The cellulose material was composed of irregularly shaped fibrous cellulose particle with a moisture content of 6.2%. The true density was 1.53. The flow indices showed that CH-MCC flowed poorly. The hydration and swelling capacities were 3.15 and 48.6% respectively. The study revealed that the cellulose material compares favourably with Avicel PH 101 as well as official requirement specified in the British Pharmacopoeia 1993 for microcrystalline cellulose.

Keywords: Coconut fruit fibre, microcrystalline cellulose, powder properties

Journal of Pharmacy and Bioresources Vol. 3 (1) 2006: pp. 12-18

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eISSN: 0189-8442