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J Pharm Sci. 2011 Aug;100(8):3386-95. doi: 10.1002/jps.22526. Epub 2011 Mar 1.

Inkjet printing of drug substances and use of porous substrates-towards individualized dosing.

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  • 1Department of Biosciences, Pharmaceutical Sciences Laboratory, Åbo Akademi University, Turku 20520, Finland.


Medicines are most often oral solid dosage forms made into tablets or capsules, and there is little room for individualized doses. The drug substance and additives are processed through multiple production phases, including complex powder handling steps. In drug manufacturing, the control of the solid-state properties of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) is essential and it offers opportunities for enhancement of drug delivery systems. In this context, inkjet printing technologies have emerged over the last decades in pharmaceutical and biological applications and offer solutions for controlling material and product characteristics with high precision. Here we report the concept of conventional inkjet printing technology to produce printable pharmaceutical dosage forms on porous substrates. Data are shown to demonstrate inkjet printing of APIs into paper substrates, and how the model drug substances (paracetamol, theophylline, and caffeine) are penetrating the porous substrates used. The method enables controlling not only the deposition but also the crystallization of the drug substances. We anticipate that the inkjet printing approach has immense potential in making sophisticated drug delivery systems by use of porous substrates in the future. For example, it may offer new perspectives for solving problems around poorly soluble drugs and dosing low-dose medicines accurately. Furthermore, with the advent of genetic mapping of humans, controlled inkjet dosing can bring solutions to fabricate on-demand individualized medicines for patients.

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