Modifying release characteristics from 3D printed drug-eluting products

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Abstract

This work describes an approach to modify the release of active compound from a 3D printed model drug product geometry intended for flexible dosing and precision medication. The production of novel polylactic acid and hydroxypropyl methylcellulose based feed materials containing nitrofurantoin for 3D printing purposes is demonstrated. Nitrofurantoin, Metolose® and polylactic acid were successfully co-extruded with up to 40% Metolose® content, and subsequently 3D printed into model disk geometries (φ10 mm, h = 2 mm). Thermal analysis with differential scanning calorimetry and solid phase identification with Raman spectroscopy showed that nitrofurantoin remained in its original solid form during both hot-melt extrusion and subsequent 3D printing. Rheological measurements of the different compositions showed that the flow properties were sensitive to the amount of undissolved particles present in the formulation. Release of nitrofurantoin from the disks was dependent on Metolose® loading, with higher accumulated release observed for higher Metolose® loads. This work shows the potential of custom-made, drug loaded feed materials for 3D printing of precision drug products with tailored drug release characteristics.

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