Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair/Advisor

Dr. Delphine Dean

Committee Member

Dr. Jordon Gilmore

Committee Member

Dr. Renee Lyons


A significant number of pharmaceuticals supplied to Tanzania are falsified or substandard. A majority of these inadequate pharmaceuticals are medications to treat life-threatening conditions. This problem not only causes mistrust in the healthcare system but also prolonged illness and potentially death for the patients. This calls for the need for the development of a cost-affordable testing kit for falsified and substandard pharmaceuticals in Tanzania. Thin-layer chromatography (TLC) was used as the testing method since it is inexpensive and requires a low skill level to complete. Malaria, human immunodeficiency virus, hypertension, tuberculosis, and diabetes are five of the most prevalent diseases in Tanzania and medications to treat these diseases are commonly falsified or substandard. Doxycycline hyclate, tenofovir disoproxil fumarate, lisinopril dihydrate, pyrazinamide, and dapagliflozin are treatments for the diseases listed above that were used for testing in this project. Five rounds of baseline TLC testing were conducted to determine baseline retention factor (Rf) values for each of the pharmaceuticals. Five rounds of humidity and temperature-controlled TLC testing were conducted for each of the pharmaceuticals to determine if extreme environmental conditions would affect the results. A graphical user interface was developed using MATLAB that contains a library of known Rf values that are referenced when a user enters their experimental values to determine the validity of the pharmaceutical. The user interface, alongside the developed TLC-based testing kit, will reduce overall costs while also effectively determining the iii integrity of a drug. User testing will be conducted, and the kit will be taken to Arusha, Tanzania, to test in the target environment and obtain feedback from scientists at Arusha Technical College.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.