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Continuous microfluidic antisolvent crystallization as a bottom-up solution for the development of long-acting injectable formulations

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journal contribution
posted on 2024-04-10, 08:23 authored by Snehashis NandiSnehashis Nandi, Laura Verstrepen, Mariana Hugo SilvaMariana Hugo Silva, Luis PadrelaLuis Padrela, Lidia Tajber, Alain Collas

Abstract: A bottom-up approach was investigated to produce long-acting injectable (LAI) suspension-based formulations to overcome specific limitations of top-down manufacturing methods by tailoring drug characteristics while making the methods more sustainable and cost-efficient. A Secoya microfluidic crystallization technology-based continuous liquid antisolvent crystallization (SCT-CLASC) process was optimized and afterward compared to an earlier developed microchannel reactor-based continuous liquid antisolvent crystallization (MCR-CLASC) setup, using itraconazole (ITZ) as the model drug. After operating parameter optimization and downstream processing (i.e., concentrating the suspensions), stable microsuspensions were generated with a final solid loading of 300 mg ITZ/g suspension. The optimized post-precipitation feed suspension consisted of 40 mg ITZ/g suspension with a drug-to-excipient ratio of 53:1. Compared to the MCR-CLASC setup, where the post-precipitation feed suspensions contained 10 mg ITZ/g suspension and had a drug-to-excipient ratio of 2:1, a higher drug concentration and lower excipient use were successfully achieved to produce LAI microsuspensions using the SCT-CLASC setup. To ensure stability during drug crystallization and storage, the suspensions’ quality was monitored for particle size distribution (PSD), solid-state form, and particle morphology. The PSD of the ITZ crystals in suspension was maintained within the target range of 1–10 µm, while the crystals displayed an elongated plate-shaped morphology and the solid state was confirmed to be form I, which is the most thermodynamically stable form of ITZ. In conclusion, this work lays the foundation for the SCT-CLASC process as an energy-efficient, robust, and reproducible bottom-up approach for the manufacture of LAI microsuspensions using ITZ at an industrial scale.


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Pharmaceutics 16, 376



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