Pharmaceutical Applications of 3D Printing

A special issue of Pharmaceutics (ISSN 1999-4923). This special issue belongs to the section "Pharmaceutical Technology, Manufacturing and Devices".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 January 2025 | Viewed by 3092

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
UTCBS, Department of Pharmacy, University Paris Cité, 75006 Paris, France
Interests: pharmaceutical compound; solid state; relative stability; phase diagrams; thermodynamics; thermal analyses, 3D printing by FDM
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The use of 3D printing in the biomedical field has been developing since the 1980s. In August 2015, 3D printing was expanded to the pharmaceutical field and the first 3D printed tablet (printlet), Spritam®, was approved by the FDA. Since then, numerous studies have focused on the manufacture of printlets using different printing methods.

In contrast to traditional manufacturing technologies, the interest of 3D printing is growing due to flexible and adjustable manufacturing processes that allow for the accurate adjustment of shape, size, flavor and dosage. Indeed, the dosages required for children and seniors may be very different from those observed in adults due to physiological and pharmacokinetic differences. In addition, 3D printing allows us to control the location of drug release, e.g., to target a specific segment of the gastrointestinal tract to treat gastrointestinal disorders.

The innovative aspect of 3D printing is to combine multiple drugs, dosages and drug-release profiles into a single formulation leading to an improvement in therapeutic adherence. Therefore, the number of daily tablets and also the potential administration errors are reduced. Moreover, the 3D printing allows us to control the drug release for enhancing its pharmacokinetics and efficacy (e.g., once-a-day dosing or delayed release to extend the effect). This possibility would constitute a step forward for elderly people who are often polymedicated.

Regarding the pediatric population, the conventional formulations may not be suitable or are not available (e.g. solid form, low palatability or unsuitable dosages). In this context, 3D printing is a manufacturing technique that could enable us to meet the specific needs of each patient.

Thanks to 3D printing, the use of certain excipients which are the subject of intolerance in certain patients can be avoided. In particular, the pediatric formulations contain many excipients which might cause toxicity in children.

This Special Issue focuses on numerous possible pharmaceutical applications of 3D Printing. An overview of the different 3D printing techniques applied to the pharmaceutical field will be of interest for the scientific community.

Research articles and reviews are welcome, and we look forward to receiving your contributions.

Dr. Philippe Espeau
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • 3D printing
  • printlet
  • pharmaceutical application
  • dosage form
  • polymedication
  • personalized medicine

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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17 pages, 2526 KiB  
Article
Geometry-Driven Fabrication of Mini-Tablets via 3D Printing: Correlating Release Kinetics with Polyhedral Shapes
by Young-Jin Kim, Yu-Rim Choi, Ji-Hyun Kang, Yun-Sang Park, Dong-Wook Kim and Chun-Woong Park
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 783; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060783 - 8 Jun 2024
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Abstract
The aim of this study was to fabricate mini-tablets of polyhedrons containing theophylline using a fused deposition modeling (FDM) 3D printer, and to evaluate the correlation between release kinetics models and their geometric shapes. The filaments containing theophylline, hydroxypropyl cellulose (HPC), and EUDRAGIT [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to fabricate mini-tablets of polyhedrons containing theophylline using a fused deposition modeling (FDM) 3D printer, and to evaluate the correlation between release kinetics models and their geometric shapes. The filaments containing theophylline, hydroxypropyl cellulose (HPC), and EUDRAGIT RS PO (EU) could be obtained with a consistent thickness through pre-drying before hot melt extrusion (HME). Mini-tablets of polyhedrons ranging from tetrahedron to icosahedron were 3D-printed using the same formulation of the filament, ensuring equal volumes. The release kinetics models derived from dissolution tests of the polyhedrons, along with calculations for various physical parameters (edge, SA: surface area, SA/W: surface area/weight, SA/V: surface area/volume), revealed that the correlation between the Higuchi model and the SA/V was the highest (R2 = 0.995). It was confirmed that using 3D- printing for the development of personalized or pediatric drug products allows for the adjustment of drug dosage by modifying the size or shape of the drug while maintaining or controlling the same release profile. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Applications of 3D Printing)
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18 pages, 4768 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of Printability of PVA-Based Tablets from Powder and Assessment of Critical Rheological Parameters
by Jonas Lenhart, Florian Pöstges, Karl G. Wagner and Dominique J. Lunter
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(4), 553; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16040553 - 19 Apr 2024
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Abstract
Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is a rather new technology in the production of personalized dosage forms. The melting and printing of polymer–active pharmaceutical ingredient (API)—mixtures can be used to produce oral dosage forms with different dosage as well as release behavior. This process [...] Read more.
Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is a rather new technology in the production of personalized dosage forms. The melting and printing of polymer–active pharmaceutical ingredient (API)—mixtures can be used to produce oral dosage forms with different dosage as well as release behavior. This process is utilized to increase the bioavailability of pharmaceutically relevant active ingredients that are poorly soluble in physiological medium by transforming them into solid amorphous dispersions (ASD). The release from such ASDs is expected to be faster and higher compared to the raw materials and thus enhance bioavailability. Printing directly from powder while forming ASDs from loperamide in Polyvinylalcohol was realized. Different techniques such as a change in infill and the incorporation of sorbitol as a plastisizer to change release patterns as well as a non-destructive way for the determination of API distribution were shown. By measuring the melt viscosities of the mixtures printed, a rheological model for the printer used is proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Applications of 3D Printing)
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Review

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21 pages, 2069 KiB  
Review
Pediatric Formulations Developed by Extrusion-Based 3D Printing: From Past Discoveries to Future Prospects
by Veronica Ianno, Sarah Vurpillot, Sylvain Prillieux and Philippe Espeau
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(4), 441; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16040441 - 22 Mar 2024
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Abstract
Three-dimensional printing (3DP) technology in pharmaceutical areas is leading to a significant change in controlled drug delivery and pharmaceutical product development. Pharmaceutical industries and academics are becoming increasingly interested in this innovative technology due to its inherent inexpensiveness and rapid prototyping. The 3DP [...] Read more.
Three-dimensional printing (3DP) technology in pharmaceutical areas is leading to a significant change in controlled drug delivery and pharmaceutical product development. Pharmaceutical industries and academics are becoming increasingly interested in this innovative technology due to its inherent inexpensiveness and rapid prototyping. The 3DP process could be established in the pharmaceutical industry to replace conventional large-scale manufacturing processes, particularly useful for personalizing pediatric drugs. For instance, shape, size, dosage, drug release and multi-drug combinations can be tailored according to the patient’s needs. Pediatric drug development has a significant global impact due to the growing needs for accessible age-appropriate pediatric medicines and for acceptable drug products to ensure adherence to the prescribed treatment. Three-dimensional printing offers several significant advantages for clinical pharmaceutical drug development, such as the ability to personalize medicines, speed up drug manufacturing timelines and provide on-demand drugs in hospitals and pharmacies. The aim of this article is to highlight the benefits of extrusion-based 3D printing technology. The future potential of 3DP in pharmaceuticals has been widely shown in the last few years. This article summarizes the discoveries about pediatric pharmaceutical formulations which have been developed with extrusion-based technologies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmaceutical Applications of 3D Printing)
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