Stability Study of Cannabidiol in the Form of Solid Powder and Sunflower Oil Solution

Stability studies represent an essential component of pharmaceutical development, enabling critical evaluation of the therapeutic potential of an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) or a final pharmaceutical product under the influence of various environmental factors. The aim of the present study was to investigate the chemical stability of cannabidiol (CBD) in the form of a solid powder (hereinafter referred to as CBD powder) and also dissolved in sunflower oil. We performed stress studies in accordance with the International Conference on Harmonization (ICH) guidelines, where 5 mg of marketed CBD in the form of a solid powder and in form of oil solution were exposed for 7 and 14, 30, 60, 90, 180, 270, and 365 days to precisely defined temperature and humidity conditions, 25 °C ± 2 °C/60% RH ± 5% and 40 °C ± 2 °C/75% RH ± 5% in both open and closed vials in the dark. CBD powder was significantly more stable than CBD in oil solution. Such finding is important because CBD is often administered dissolved in oil matrix in practice due to very good bioavailability. Thus, the knowledge on admissible shelf time is of paramount importance.

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Kosović, E.; Sýkora, D.; Kuchař, M. Stability Study of Cannabidiol in the Form of Solid Powder and Sunflower Oil Solution. Pharmaceutics 2021, 13, 412.

While CBD stored in the form of a solid powder remained mostly intact over a one-year time period under the studied stability conditions with an approximately 10% decrease in CBD, the influence of temperature, humidity, and air oxygen on CBD oil samples was much more pronounced. Very significant degradation of CBD took place between the 90th and 180th day in the case of CBD oil samples in open vials at 40 °C ± 2 °C/75% RH ± 5%, with a complete degradation of CBD after approximately 270 days. Exposure to artificial light showed that the light itself does not have strong adverse effects on CBD. Nevertheless, in combination with other factors, it may accelerate the degradation process. The experimental results of our CBD stability study showed that under defined stability conditions, various degradation products, including CBN and several oxidation products, were formed. However, Δ9-THC was not detected by our method.


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