3D printed drug products: Non-destructive dose verification using a rapid point-and-shoot approach


Three-dimensional printing (3DP) has the potential to cause a paradigm shift in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals, enabling personalised medicines to be produced on-demand. To facilitate integration into healthcare, non-destructive characterisation techniques are required to ensure final product quality. Here, the use of process analytical technologies (PAT), including near infrared spectroscopy(NIR) and Raman confocal microscopy, were evaluated on paracetamol-loaded 3D printed cylindrical tablets composed of an acrylic polymer (Eudragit L100-55). Using a portable NIR spectrometer, a calibration model was developed, which predicted successfully drug concentration across the range of 4–40% w/w. The model demonstrated excellent linearity (R2 = 0.996) and accuracy (RMSEP = 0.63%) and results were confirmed with conventional HPLCanalysis. The model maintained high accuracy for tablets of a different geometry (torus shapes), a different formulation type (oral films) and when the polymer was changed from acrylic to cellulosic (hypromellose, HPMC). Raman confocal microscopy showed a homogenous drug distribution, with paracetamol predominantly present in the amorphous form as a solid dispersion. Overall, this article is the first to report the use of a rapid ‘point-and-shoot’ approach as a non-destructive quality control method, supporting the integration of 3DP for medicine production into clinical practice.

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Sarah J Trenfield a, Alvaro Goyanes b, Richard Telford c, David Wilsdon d, Martin Rowland e, Simon Gaisford a, b, Abdul W Basit a, b
3D printed drug products Non-destructive
Adobe Acrobat Document 1.8 MB


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