Effect of powder processing on performance of fenofibrate formulations

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In this study, the effect of the order in which powder blending and jet-milling were performed for the production of the bulk powders on the performance of 200-mg dose orally disintegrating tablets (ODTs) of fenofibrate was evaluated. Bulk powders composed of fenofibrate, mannitol, copovidone S630, and docusate sodium in a 10:10:2:1.2 ratio were prepared by the following three processes: process A: fenofibrate + excipients → blending; process B: fenofibrate → jet-milling → blending with excipients; process C: fenofibrate + excipients → blending → jet-milling. The bulk powders were granulated followed by blending and tableting. The materials were tested for Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), drug particle sizing post-reconstitution, dissolution, optical micrography, Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS) and disintegration of the ODTs. It was found that the crystallinity of fenofibrate was not impacted by the blending and jet-milling processes. Process A produced materials having poorer fenofibrate reconstitution as compared to processes involving jet-milling. It was discovered that milling a blend of fenofibrate/excipient (process C) was advantageous over milling the raw drug alone (process B). Process C yielded bulk powder that showed rapid dissolution and ODTs which exhibited rapid disintegration.

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