Capsugel buys ionic liquid tech IP to enhance lipid-based drug solubility

By Dan Stanton

- Last updated on GMT

Capsugel acquires lipid drug delivery tech based on Ionic liquid - a salt which is composed out of weakly coordinated anions and cations - from Monash University
Capsugel acquires lipid drug delivery tech based on Ionic liquid - a salt which is composed out of weakly coordinated anions and cations - from Monash University

Related tags Pharmacology

Capsugel has acquired a technology platform which uses ionic liquids to enhance the solubility of lipid-based drug delivery systems.

The New Jersey-based dosage form solutions company has a history of collaboration with Melbourne, Australia’ s Monash University, having created the Lipid Formulation Classification System (LFCS) Consortium in 2005 in order to address and categorise issues in lipid-based drug delivery systems.

Now, as part of an expansion of its relationship with the University, Capsugel has acquired the Ionic Liquids platform developed at the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (MIPS), with the patent application and technical know-how to be transferred immediately.

Lipid-based drug delivery systems (LBDDs) are an increasingly important drug delivery technique as drugs become more complex and less soluble in water. LBDDs are a versatile way of enabling a higher dose to be encapsulated and more active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) to be absorbed.

According to a paper authored published in Pharmaceutical Research in 2010​ and authored by researchers from Monash, APIs converted into ionic liquids often have different properties, including improved solubilities and dissolution rates, and such formulations “challenge the current industry reliance on crystalline APIs.”

Bioavailability enhancement

This technology uses lipid-like counter-ion salts in lipid-based liquid, semi-solid and multiparticulate formulations, to improve the solubility of the API. The platform will be absorbed into Capsugel’s Dosage Form Solutions (DFS) unit to provide its clients a further bioavailability-enhancing development option.

“The Ionic Liquids Technology will allow us to significantly increase drug solubility, reduce absorption variability, decrease excipient levels and reduce pill burden,” ​SVP of R&D at Capsugel Keith Hutchison said.

“This represents a valuable addition to our capabilities in designing and developing innovative immediate and modified-release dosage forms. Our continuing work with Monash holds great potential for additional drug-delivery innovations in the future.”

The IP technology is the latest acquisition comes as part of a string of Capsugel acquisitions in the field of bioavailability enhancement.

Since the DFS unit was set up in February 2013​, the firm has bought Scotland, UK-based CDMO Encap​, in a deal that included the world’s largest liquid and semi-solid filled capsule facility. In October 2013​, the company bought Bend Research, adding a range of bioavailability enhancement technologies.

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