Charge Reduction Assisted Production of Diminutive Fluid Bed Granules for High Drug Load Minitablets
13 October 2022
Loo Shang Jun
Shang Jun graduated from the National University of Singapore with BSc. (Hons.) in Pharmacy in 2017. He is also a registered pharmacist in Singapore and currently in his final semester of PhD candidature under the supervision of A/P Chan Lai Wah and A/P Paul Heng at GEA–NUS Pharmaceutical Processing Research Laboratory (GEA–NUS PPRL). His thesis work entails the development of good quality, high drug load minitablets from cohesive, highly charged micronized drug powder of poor compressibility by examining different granule processing techniques, formulation variables, compaction conditions and toolings. He is also interested in the regulatory control of finished pharmaceutical products, particularly their good manufacturing practices, safety and quality.
Micronized drug powders are generally unsuitable as tableting feed to produce minitablets due to their cohesivity and poor flow. The silicification of fine paracetamol powder (PCMF) with an optimal concentration range of fumed silica (fSi) reduced the net negative charge of PCMF and improved powder flow. With optimized fSi concentration and granulation process parameters in a specialized fluid bed system with swirling air and side spray, high drug load diminutive granules were successfully prepared from PCMF as starter seeds. Resultant minitablets were mechanically strong with rapid disintegration time. This study demonstrated the feasibility of producing high drug load minitablets from a cohesive, electrostatic–prone fine drug powder.