Interaction of sulfasalazine with outer surface of boron-nitride nanotube as a drug carrier in aqueous solution: insights from quantum mechanics and Monte Carlo simulation

S Ketabi and S Shalmashi and S Hallajian, BMC CHEMISTRY, 17, 169 (2023).

DOI: 10.1186/s13065-023-01088-w

The improvement of the solubility of sulfasalazine in physiological media was the major aim of this study. Accordingly, BNNT inspected as a notable candidate for the carriage of this drug in aqueous media. For this purpose, four possible interactions of two tautomer of sulfasalazine with (9,0) boron-nitride nanotube were considered in aqueous media. The compounds were optimized in gas phase using density functional calculations. Solvation free energies and association free energies of the optimized structures were then studied by Monte Carlo simulation and perturbation method in water environment. Outcomes of quantum mechanical calculations presented that interaction of keto form of sulfasalazine produce the most stable complexes with boron-nitride nanotube in gas phase. Simulation results revealed that electrostatic interactions play a vital role in the intermolecular interaction energies after binding of drug and nanotube in aqueous solution. Results of association free energy calculations indicated that complexes of both two sulfasalazine tautomers (keto and enol) and nanotube were stable in solution. Computed solvation free energies in water showed that the interaction with boron-nitride nanotube significantly improved the solubility of sulfasalazine, which could improve its in vivo bioavailability.

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