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Control particle size and morphology with this technique

By Paul Grad |

Lactose has been widely used as a pharmaceutical excipient, where the size and morphology of the particles of lactose significantly affect the functionality of the resultant drug product. Lactose particles produced by various methods exhibit various morphologies, such as spherical amorphous particles, or lactose crystals with tomahawk or sharp and fine morphology. To date, however, there is no report in which a single process can be manipulated to produce both types of morphology, according to a team from Monash University (Melbourne, Australia; www.monash.edu.au). Together with colleagues from Xiamen University (Xiamen) and Soochow University (Suzhou, both China), the team has developed a technique, called antisolvent vapor precipitation (AVP), which can be controlled to produce ultra-fine lactose particles of uniform size, with spiky crystalline morphology or spherical amorphous morphology. The method is expected to improve the efficiency of powder pulmonary-drug delivery, as for example in the case of asthma inhalers. With current inhaler designs, a large portion of medication propelled into a patient’s throat remains there, and only a fraction reaches the lower regions of the lungs, says team member Meng Wai Woo, of Monash’s…
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