Innovative device for manufacturing drugs continuously

Sirris and the ULiège have developed a process of extrusion / hot forming of solid forms for pharmaceutical use. A patent has been issued. 

Certain pharmaceutical substances and certain food supplements are weakly soluble. To facilitate their absorption after ingestion, these ingredients are generally dispersed in a polymer matrix and prepared in a more easily soluble solid form. 

Generally, this operation is done by hot extrusion, followed by crushing of the extrudate and compression of the particles or followed by direct shaping which produces a lot of waste. These techniques have various shortcomings, in particular such as imperfections of the form of the tablets, problems of stability or homogeneity of the concentration of the active ingredients. 

From 2012 to 2015, in a project supported by the Walloon Region, Sirris collaborated with the University of Liège, Galenic Pharmacy Laboratory, in finalising a device for continuously producing drugs in solid form which solves these problems. The equipment makes it possible to improve the form, composition and stability of the resulting tablets as well as the final dissolution of the active ingredient and its bioavailability. The system has been designed for mass production. 

The most innovative point of the device for extrusion and hot forming conceived by Sirris is the cutting system which produces the tablets from the extruded strip. 

The device is the subject of a patent obtained by the ULiège. The two partners intend to evaluate it with pharmaceutical companies. 

But the skills of Sirris implemented in this project can also be evaluated in sectors other than the medical: design of complex assemblies integrating mechanics, deposition processes, electronics, digital simulation; thermal analysis and fluid flows; use of thermoplastics (extrusion, thermoforming, injection, etc.); choice of materials; system prototyping; pilot manufacture of parts, etc. 

Source 

  • Patent BE1024283 

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