Hewarathna, A.,Mozziconacci, O.,Nariya, M. K.,Kleindl, P. A.,Xiong, J.,Fisher, A. C.,Joshi, S. B.,Middaugh, C. R.,Forrest, M. L.,Volkin, D. B.,Deeds, E. J.,Schoneich, C.

As the second of a 3-part series of articles in this issue concerning the development of a mathematical model for comparative characterization of complex mixture drugs using crofelemer (CF) as a model compound, this work focuses on the evaluation of the chemical stability profile of CF. CF is a biopolymer containing a mixture of proanthocyanidin oligomers which are primarily composed of gallocatechin with a small contribution from catechin. CF extracted from drug product was subjected to molecular weight-based fractionation and thiolysis. Temperature stress and metal-catalyzed oxidation were selected for accelerated and forced degradation studies. Stressed CF samples were size fractionated, thiolyzed, and analyzed with a combination of negative-ion electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) and reversed-phase-HPLC with UV absorption and fluorescence detection. We further analyzed the chemical stability data sets for various CF samples generated from reversed-phase-HPLC-UV and ESI-MS using data-mining and machine learning approaches. In particular, calculations based on mutual information of over 800,000 data points in the ESI-MS analytical data set revealed specific CF cleavage and degradation products that were differentially generated under specific storage/degradation conditions, which were not initially identified using traditional analysis of the ESI-MS results.