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Chemistry International
Vol. 24, No. 3
May 2002


New Books and Publications

Handbook of Pharmaceutical Salts: Properties, Selection, and Use

P. H. Stahl and G. Wermuth (editors) Verlag Helvetica Chimica Acta, Zürich, 2002. (ISBN 3-906390-26-8)

Because an estimated half of all drug molecules used in medicine are administered as salts, the selection of a suitable salt for a drug candidate is recognized as an essential step in the preclinical phase of drug development. Surprisingly, however, the scientific literature on this topic is rather limited and scattered throughout numerous journals and patents. The majority of medicinal chemists in the pharmaceutical industry whose primary focus is the design and synthesis of novel compounds as future drugs are organic chemists for whom salt formation is often a marginal activity restricted to the short-term objective of obtaining crystalline material. Because a comprehensive resource that addresses the preparation, selection, and use of pharmaceutically active salts has not been available, these scientists may forego the opportunities for increased efficacy and improved drug delivery provided by selection of an optimal salt.

To fill this gap in the pharmaceutical bibliography, an international team of 17 authors from academia and pharmaceutical industry contribute to this volume and present the necessary theoretical foundations as well as a wealth of detailed practical experience in the choice of pharmaceutically active salts. Altogether, the contributions in this book reflect the multidisciplinary nature of the science involved in selection of suitable salt forms for new drug products. The editors have taken care to address every conceivable aspect of the preparation of pharmaceutical salts.

This book is destined to be an essential reference for students of medicinal and pharmaceutical chemistry, and an indispensable handbook for research-and-development chemists, analytical chemists, biologists, development pharmacists, regulatory and patent specialists, and medicinal scientists engaged in preclinical development of drugs. This comprehensive up-to-date guide will be an instructive companion for all scientists involved in research and development of drugs and, in particular, of pharmaceutical dosage forms.

This reference is the result of an IUPAC project chaired by Prof. Camille G. Wermuth, the former president of IUPAC’s Chemistry and Human Health Division.





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