Molecular dynamics of itraconazole confined in thin supported layers
Broadband Dielectric Spectroscopy (BDS) is used to study the molecular dynamics of thin layers of itraconazole – an active pharmaceutical ingredient with rod-like structure and whose Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) scans reveal liquid crystalline-like phase transitions. It is found that (i) the structural relaxation process remains bulk like, within the limits of experimental accuracy, in its mean relaxation rate, while (ii) its shape is governed by two competing events: interfacial interactions, and crystalline ordering. Additionally, (iii) the dynamics of the δ-relaxation – assigned to the flip–flop rotation of the molecule about its short axis – deviates from bulk behaviour as the glass transition is approached for the confined material. These observations are rationalized within the framework of molecular dynamics as currently understood.