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Dissolvable Development

Today’s orally disintegrating tablet (ODT) formulators have access to several direct compressible excipient platforms especially designed for ODTs. Each of these platforms has its own advantages and disadvantages, such as poor compactibility, slow disintegration, lack of stability, or inferior organoleptic properties. To be successful, future excipient developments should seek to address these key performance attributes of ODTs simultaneously. Functionalised calcium carbonate (FCC) provides a solution that combines good compactibility with fast disintegration time. Therefore, besides being a promising excipient for solid oral dosage forms, it can help to tackle challenges in ODT formulation.

Enhanced Compliance

ODTs and orally disintegrating granules (ODGs) are designed to dissolve in the mouth within seconds without the need for water. Because of their convenience, both dosage forms can enhance compliance, which is a clear advantage for paediatric, geriatric, and psychiatric formulations. Although ODTs and ODGs are mostly used in immediate release formulations, microencapsulation of the API with the appropriate polymers enables other forms of drug delivery. If a closer look is taken at the ideal characteristics of both formulations, it turns out that an optimum speed of disintegration exists. If the water uptake phase of disintegration is too quick, then it is often associated with the drying of the mouth, which may cause patient discomfort. The best sensation for the patient is when the disintegration starts quickly upon contact with a small amount of saliva and lasts no more than 30 seconds. After disintegration, the optimum texture gives the patient a feeling that the tablet has turned into syrup. Insoluble ingredients have to be as small as possible to avoid a sandy feeling in the mouth. A short disintegration time requires specific excipients that differ from those used in other oral dosage forms.

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Dr Carolina Diaz Quijano joined Omya International in 2013. She has worked as Senior Scientist for Mineral Surface Chemistry and as Manager for Technical Services and Innovation. Currently, Carolina holds the position of Manager for Innovation and Technical Marketing for pharma and nutraceutical applications. Previously, she has worked as a research collaborator in protein engineering at the University of Zurich, Switzerland, and in diagnostics and genetic profiles at the start-up Stab Vida in Portugal. Carolina earned a PhD in life sciences from ETH Zurich.
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