Slovakian CDMO Saneca ups capabilities after controlled release contract win

By Staff Reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Image: iStock/Fredex8
Image: iStock/Fredex8
Saneca Pharma will invest in its manufacturing site in Slovakia to service a five-year agreement supplying the Menarini Group with controlled release pellets.

The deal announced yesterday will see the Slovakian contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) produce the controlled release pellets for one of the Menarini Group’s products from its facility in Hlohovec, about 50km northeast of Bratislava.

As part of the deal, Saneca is increasing the scale at which it can perform wurster coating – a technology for precision application of a film coating onto particulate materials such as powders, crystals, or granules - of the pellets.

The pellets themselves are made by extrusion spheronisation, “a method of wet granulation which makes strong dense pellets ideal for control release coating,”​ sales and marketing director Jeremy Drummond told

“The wet mass is extruded like spaghetti which falls on a rotating disc that rolls the broken ‘spaghetti’ into individual spheres.”

The firm’s technology will be used to produce enteric coated pellets aimed at preventing dissolution in the stomach, while allowing dissolution in the small intestine.

Drummond did not, however, disclose how much the firm would be investing to scale up coating.

He did say “Saneca has many years’ experience using the technology,”​ and “this is [just] one specialised technology ideal for controlled release products” which the firm offers for manufacturing solid dosage forms.

The deal is the latest form the CDMO which inked a 20 generic product production deal with Xantis Pharma in July​, and agreed to supply AMRI with opiate-intermediates in September last year​.

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