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  • Author or Editor: L. Marini x
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Abstract  

This paper is the first one of a research project aimed to find and optimize methods by which drug-excipient compatibility can be reliably and quickly assessed. A number of experimental techniques (simultaneous TG-DSC, FT-IR spectroscopy, X-ray powder diffraction, scanning electron microscopy) have been used to investigate the compatibility between a novel tricyclic β-lactam antibiotic developed by GlaxoWellcome (now GlaxoSmithKline), GV118819x, and some commonly used excipients (poly(vinylpyrrolidone), magnesium stearate and α-lactose). Binary mixtures of two different compositions have been analyzed: drug:excipient=80:20 and 20:80 (mass/mass). Both qualitative and quantitative interaction indicators have been identified. It is shown that simultaneous thermal analysis is the best suited technique in the search of interaction indicators. With a proper selection of experimental conditions it is able to reveal the thermal changes brought about by the early stages of interaction, i.e. those occurring during the measurement on physical mixtures not previously annealed under stress conditions. Such an ability is discussed, in particular, with respect to the role of the water vapour, which has been found to be a critical parameter for all our systems.

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In Europe, epiphytic lichens are incorporated in forest diversity monitoring projects in which sampling at the tree level is carried out on 4 grids on the 4 cardinal points (N, S, E, W) of the trunk. Our results, based on the analysis of a dataset referring to six forest sites in NE-Italy and including 264 trees, indicate that a lichen assessment based on sampling at the tree level less than four cardinal points might be effective in estimating species richness across different forest types, showing very high rates of species capture. Similar results were achieved if the reduction of sampling effort is applied to the number of trees sampled within each area. This effect can be explained taking into account the redundant information collected on the same tree. In the framework of forest monitoring programs, the main perspective of our results is related to the possibility of investing saved resources for improving lichen inventories by including in the surveys currently neglected microhabitats. Further studies would be welcome to identify an optimal balance between sampling effort and information gathered, as economic resources are often a constraint to activate and maintain large-scale and long-term monitoring projects.

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