By Cameron Chai
A new production technique has been developed by the Bradford university researchers to make co-crystals for use in the pharmaceutical industry. The method is based on the twin screw extrusion process, which depends on a combination of shearing forces and of high temperatures to transform raw materials into co-crystals.
As the co-crystallisation technique is solvent free, continuous and scalable, it is suitable for industrial scale manufacturing. The process can be optimized by understanding the formation of crystals.
The co-crystals comprise active ingredients and various other substances such as vitamins and sugar,which enhances the solubility of the active ingredient. As a substitute for traditional methods, co-crystallisation process creates targeted soluble drugs. In addition, the process has an enormous capability to support the pharmaceutical industry in developing new drug compounds in a stable, more efficient and faster way.
Tests have shown that the purity of co-crystals in model drugs like ibuprofen is nearly 100%. The research team will analyze the most favorable conditions for co-crystal creation by using selected co-formers and model drugs. They will use several analytical methods to distinguish the crystalline materials and examine the theory behind crystal formation. Researchers will continuously evaluate efficiency, stability, solubility and other properties of the new co-crystals.
The project will help scientists to understand the working of the co-crystallisation process as well as support them to assess as to how co-crystals can be delivered to patients.