Discipline: Chemistry and Chemical Sciences
Subcategory: Chemistry (not Biochemistry)
Sydnie Williams - Dillard University
Co-Author(s): Vernie Daniels and Lakshmi Putcha, Biomedical Research and Environmental Science Division, NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX
Pharmaceutical stability studies are used to assess the changes in the quality of a drug product under the influence of various environmental factors, such as temperature, humidity and light. While astronauts are aboard the International Space Station (ISS), medication is transported aboard the ISS via the Space Transportation System (STS) for various common ailments. To ensure optimal health of astronauts during all space exploration missions, results from previous pharmaceutical stability studies were analyzed using four different flight and ground environmental paradigms. The purpose of this study is to observe the physical and chemical stability of Ciprofloxacin and Promethazine stored on (STS) short and (ISS) long duration space flights.
Four different flight or ground environmental paradigms were selected for pharmaceutical stability analysis. Each paradigm consisted of flight medical or experimental kit medication samples and their matching controls. The controls were stowed on ground at the NASA Johnson Space Center to observe the susceptibility of medicines to a replicated environment similar to space. All paradigms were compiled into long (ISS) and short (STS) duration comparative excel spreadsheets to capture the measured Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) content of the medications from each paradigm. Two medications, promethazine and ciprofloxacin, were selected for further statistical analysis, based on their being common to all research paradigms, and their inclusion in multiple dosage forms (tablets, solutions, ointments, suppositories and injections). STATA software was used to generate a two-way statistical analysis of variance (ANOVA) graph for a synergized variability analysis among values of more than two groups. The results indicate Ciprofloxacin tablets in long duration and short duration space travels were consistently stable in flight and on ground defining Ciprofloxacin tablets as a suggested medication for space travel. Promethazine suppositories in long and short duration space travel were unstable in flight and on ground while promethazine tablets were observed to be more stable on ground.
In a future study, additional data may be collected from all operational and experimental medical kits to deliver more desirable results and accurately indicate which drug products and dosage forms would retain pharmaceutical stability physical and chemical shelf-life standards during space travel.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): I thank Lakshmi Putcha and Vernie Daniels for their mentorship and help with pharmaceutical studies. Rob Ploutz-Snyder for statistical support. I also thank Bernard Singleton for his help. Funding was provided by the Universities Space Research Association.
Faculty Advisor: Bernard Singleton,