Performance assessment of linear iterative optimization technology (IOT) for Raman chemical mapping of pharmaceutical tablets

Shashwat Gupta, Andrés D. Román-Ospino, Yukteshwar Baranwal, Douglas Hausner, Rohit Ramachandran, Fernando J. Muzzio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Raman chemical mapping is an inherently slow analysis tool. Accurate and robust multivariate analysis algorithms, which require least amount of time and effort in method development are desirable. Calibration-free regression and resolution approaches such as classical least squares (CLS) and multivariate curve resolution using alternating least squares (MCR-ALS), respectively, help in reducing the resources required for method development. However, conventional CLS does not consider appropriate constraints, which may result in negative and/or greater than 100 % Raman concentration scores, while MCR-ALS may not always be as accurate as regression-based algorithms. Linear iterative optimization technology (IOT) is another calibration-free algorithm, which with appropriate constraints has previously shown promise in online and offline pharmaceutical mixture composition determination. This paper aims to evaluate the performance of the linear IOT algorithm for Raman chemical mapping of the active pharmaceutical ingredient (API), diluent, and lubricant in pharmaceutical tablets. Two pre-processing strategies were applied to the raw Raman mapping spectra. The results were compared with CLS (current reference method) and MCR-ALS. Special emphasis was given to mapping at low Raman exposure times to enable feasible total acquisition times (< 5 h). The quality of IOT/CLS/MCR-ALS estimated Raman concentration predictions were assessed by calculating a correlation factor between the spectrum corresponding to the maximum predicted concentration (or resolved spectra) of a component for IOT/CLS (or MCR-ALS) and the pure powder component spectrum. The Raman chemical maps were visualized, and the average Raman concentrations scores were compared. The results demonstrated the utility of IOT in Raman chemical mapping of pharmaceutical tablets. The diluent (lactose) and API (semi-fine APAP) used in this study were reliably estimated by IOT at relatively short Raman exposure times. On the other hand, as expected, the lubricant (magnesium stearate) could not be detected in any of the cases investigated here, irrespective of the algorithm used. Overall, for the API and diluent used in this formulation as well as the chemical mapping conditions, linear IOT seemed to better estimate the pure spectrum intensities and the average Raman scores (closer to CLS) in comparison to MCR-ALS. Moreover, application of appropriate constraints in linear IOT avoided the presence of negative and/or greater than 100 % Raman concentration scores, as observed in CLS-based Raman chemical maps.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number114305
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis
StatePublished - Oct 25 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Spectroscopy
  • Clinical Biochemistry


  • CLS
  • Linear iterative optimization technology (IOT)
  • Pharmaceutical tablets
  • Raman chemical mapping


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