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Pharmaceutical Technology Europe® spoke with Ole Wiborg from Zerion Pharma, a Danish pharmaceutical development company, at the inaugural Start-Up Market on the show floor at CPHI Barcelona 2023.
Poorly aqueous soluble compounds account for a major proportion of the drug development pipeline and, if not correctly formulated, can end in costly failure for companies. To overcome the obstacle of poor aqueous solubility in drug development, companies can choose from a number of different approaches, such as particle size reduction, salt formation, using a surfactant, and so on.
University of Copenhagen spin-out company, Zerion Pharma, has developed a new technology, Dispersome, to help solve drug solubility issues. To learn more about the company and its new formulation platform, Pharmaceutical Technology Europe® spoke with the company’s chief executive officer, Ole Wiborg, at CPHI Barcelona 2023.
“We have developed a new technology platform that can be used to [increase the] solubility of small-molecule drugs,” specified Wiborg. “Generally, our technology works for most small-molecule drugs, even for some of the molecules that are characterized as ‘brick dust’—which means almost like sand and so you cannot make them into solution.”
Additionally, Wiborg revealed that the technology is finding use within the cannabis field—an area where there are some very difficult molecules to work with. “So, in general, I would say that [our technology] is applicable across a broad area … and works for up to 80% to 90% of molecules,” he stated.
Experimental work on the company’s platform has also been published in peer-reviewed journals, Wiborg pointed out. For example, in June 2023, Zerion Pharma announced that work from two partnership projects had been published in both the International Journal of Pharmaceuticals and Pharmaceutical Research, which demonstrated the relationship between drug loading and dissolution of Dispersome formulations of Nimodipine (1).
“We are now anticipated at the beginning of next year  we will have two clinical studies with our partners that are in the cannabis field,” Wiborg remarked. “So, we will soon have a lot of human data to support the technology.”
1. Zerion Pharma. Zerion Pharma’s Dispersome Technology Published in Two Peer-Reviewed Papers Through Partnerships with Pharmaceutical Companies. Zerion.eu, Press Release, June 8, 2023.
Zerion Pharma was featured at the inaugural Start-Up Market on the show floor at CPHI Barcelona 2023. CPHI Barcelona ran from Oct. 24–26, 2023.