An additional large-scale spray drying unit at Hovione’s facility in Loures, Portugal, is set to be operational by March next year, and is the first phase of a broad expansion of the firm’s spray-dry services designed to meet increased demand.
“This new unit will allow us to produce between 50 and 200 metric tons of spray dried products per year,” Filipe Gaspar, VP of R&D at Hovione, told in-Pharmatechnologist.com. “It represents an increase in 20% of Hovione’s current installed capacity.”
“Spray drying is becoming the leading platform to overcome the poor solubility of most modern oral drugs,” he said, adding each year one or two new oral drug products reach the market using the technology.
“[It] is a preferred process when producing highly soluble amorphous materials when isolating thermal sensitive products or when precise control over particle morphology, size and power attributes are required. Many of these advanced materials have high potency but spray drying technology can be adjusted to meet the inherent requirements.”
But among the service providers, “there is intense competition in early stage development and to a lesser extent in late stage and commercial spray drying though the latter will increase in the upcoming years.”
Just last week, Capsugel announced it had completed a $25m expansion at its facility in Bend, Oregon, adding a third commercial-scale dryer.
“Multiple offerings, competition, helps considerably in making spray drying an established technology in Pharma and that is good news for all of us,” said Gaspar who added Hovione was one of the early adaptors with more than 10 years commercial spray-dry experience.