BASF’s Kollicoat of many colours

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Pharmacology, Viagra

BASF says the new coloured tablet extension to its Kollicoat IR coating polymer will help manufacturers produce patient-friendly pills.

The new process, launched at CPhI 2009 in Madrid, Spain last month, allows manufacturers to combine seven base colours to produce Kollicoat IR of any shade for tablet production.

Company spokesperson Stefanie Hofmann told in-PharmaTechnologist that treatment compliance was a key motivator for the development of the new manufacturing process.

We learn from our customers, the pharmaceutical manufacturers, that elderly people in particular may have difficulty telling tablets apart. Distinctive coloring enhances treatment compliance and helps prevent mix-ups for patients.”

She also stressed the role that colour can play in drug marketing, citing the success of Viagra’s “blue pill” and omeprazol’s “purple pill” branding to support the idea.

Safety considerations in production as well as marketing aspects ask for products, which can be distinguished easily. Besides the tablet shape, different colours are the feature of choice for this purpose.”

“Innovation doesn’t just happen”

BASF worked with a number of drug industry customers to develop the Kollicoat base colour concept and Xfast manufacturing process, which it claims is unique in the industry.

Hofmann explained that: “We needed to evaluate the current issues in tablet production, excipients logistics and dosage form development.

“Out of this, we brought all our experts around one table: polymer chemists, process technologist, formulation experts, and our own pharmacists to make it happen.

“Innovation is not something that just happens. It is a process which needs to be well understood, steered and structured.

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