Navigation Links
New research into safer drugs puts pills through the printer
Date:5/24/2010

A collaboration between the University of Leeds, Durham University and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is looking at 'printing' pills to order, to create safer and faster-acting medicines.

It should also bring new drugs to market faster, so patients can benefit more quickly from medical advances.

The research, led by Dr Nik Kapur from the University's Faculty of Engineering, is set to revolutionise a process which has remained unchanged for over a thousand years.

GSK has developed a way of printing active pharmaceutical ingredients onto tablets but the process can only currently be applied to just 0.5 per cent of all medicines used in tablet form. The researchers hope the new project will see this increase this to 40 per cent.

"Some active ingredients can be dissolved in a liquid, which then behaves like normal ink, so then the process is fairly straightforward," explains Dr Kapur. "However, when you're working with active ingredients that don't dissolve, the particles of the drug are suspended in the liquid, which creates very different properties and challenges for use within a printing system.

"For some tablets, you may also need higher concentrations of active ingredients to create the right dose, and this will affect how the liquid behaves."

A medicine droplet is 20 times larger than an ink droplet in a standard ink-jet system, so the challenges facing the researchers include the numbers of drops that each tablet can hold, and how to increase the level of active ingredient in each drop. The research will also look at the properties and behaviour of the suspension, the shape and size of the printing nozzle and ways to pump the suspension through the printing equipment.

Drugs produced in this way would be faster acting, as with the active ingredient on the pill's surface, the pill would no longer need to be broken down by the digestive system before the drug can enter the bloodstream. Ultimately it would also be possible to print several drugs onto one pill, reducing the number of tablets to be swallowed by patients on multiple medicines.

Printing active ingredients onto pre-formed tablets speeds up and improves quality control, as each tablet contains exactly the correct dose. With some of the current quality assurance procedures rendered unnecessary, new drugs would reach patients much faster.

The first documented manufacture of pills goes back to Egyptian times, when active medicinal ingredients were rolled in bread or clay, but the earliest reference to a tablet a compressed pill is found in tenth century Arabic medical literature. The process had little changed when the first patent for tablets was applied for in 1843. First produced in small doses by pharmacists, mass production still uses the same process, but with much advanced technology and quality assurance.

Because most drugs only need very small doses, the pill or tablet acts as a carrier to make the medicine big enough to pick up and swallow. The active ingredient is usually just one thousandth of a pill, so has to be mixed with other ingredients to bulk it out to pill size. This is then split into the amount needed for each pill and compressed to create a tablet.

One of the major challenges is ensuring that each tablet contains the correct dose. This is currently done by statistically checking samples from each batch of pills post-production, but a printed system would enable quality control of each pill as it is produced. The new system would therefore both speed up production and provide a greater quality assurance and consistency of dosage than are currently possible under even the highest pharmaceutical standards.


'/>"/>

Contact: Abigail Chard
abigail@campuspr.co.uk
44-113-258-9880
University of Leeds
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. MIT researchers develop better way to detect food allergies
2. Crohn's & Colitis Foundation National Event Helping Women Manage Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Two Women Physician Experts and Researchers in IBD on Interactive Webcast/Teleconference
3. Penn State receives Grand Challenges Explorations grant for innovative global health research
4. Mayo Clinic researchers find gene they believe is key to kidney cancer
5. Poll finds concerns about pace of medical and health research
6. Georgia Tech awarded Gates Foundation grant for innovative global health research
7. Life sciences research grants awarded through Inova Health System and George Mason University
8. Researchers get $3.3 million grant to investigate language outcomes of bilingual children
9. Book Delivers Latest ADHD Research, Treatments & Results
10. FightSMA Awards $250,000 Grant to Gene Researcher at The Ohio State University
11. Heavy alcohol use, binge drinking, might increase risk of pancreatic cancer, researcher reports
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... Alzheimer’s or dementia. However, many long-term care insurance companies have a waiver for care ... is the 90-day elimination period, when the family pays for care, is often waived, ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and ... explains one of the most popular and least understood books in the Holy Scriptures, ... puzzling descriptions that have baffled scholars for centuries. Many have tossed it off as ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history ... The Brink” is the creation of published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and ... WWII veteran, he spent thirty years in the Navy. Following his career as ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... WAUSAU, Wis. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... formulated standard products to meet the demand of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities ... team of probiotic experts and tested to meet the highest standard. , ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Information about the ... to develop to enable prevention of a major side effect of chemotherapy in ... in pediatric patients. For cisplatin, hearing loss is FDA listed on-label as a ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... 2017  Caris Life Sciences ® , a leading ... of precision medicine, today announced that St. Jude Medical ... Alliance™ (POA) as its 17 th member. Through ... Crosson Cancer Institute will help develop standards of care ... profiling, making cancer treatment more precise and effective. ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... 2017   West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. (NYSE: ... drug administration, today shared the results of a study ... the intradermal administration of polio vaccines. The study results ... May 2017 by Dr. Ondrej Mach , Clinical ... Organization (WHO), and recently published in the journal ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... Mass. , Oct. 4, 2017  According to the Centers for ... the end of October . PhysicianOne Urgent Care is helping communities across ... Westchester, NY , by offering no-cost* flu shots through the ... as mandated by certain health insurance regulations. ... The best time to get a flu shot is by the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: