Metrics Files Patent for Controlled-Release System

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ePT--the Electronic Newsletter of Pharmaceutical Technology

Metrics Files Patent for Controlled-Release System

Scientists at Metrics, Inc. (Greenville, NC) have developed an extended-release drug delivery platform for tablets requiring zero-order or near-zero–order in vitro dissolution.

According to Metrics's development scientist Brian Woodall, the delivery system is based on a unique ratio of FDA-approved, National Formulary-grade excipients as well as a minor thin-film coating (3–5%). The technology, currently the subject of a provisional patent application, is similar to a matrix tablet system in that it depends on the behavior of the selected polymers to swell, dissolve, and form a gel-like mass at a specific rate, which enables a controlled and steady release. The film coating prevents initial dose-dumping when the tablet is dropped into a dissolution vessel, thereby extending the release rate. The manufacture of the system involves dry-blending the active ingredient, compressing the tablet, and applying the film coating.

Woodall and co-developer Brad Gold, Metrics's director of pharmaceutical development and new technologies, report the delivery mechanism is pH-independent, suitable for both low and relatively high-dose active ingredients, as well as for water-soluble and -insoluble compounds that are hydrophobic or hydrophilic. The company plans to present more information about the technology at the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists annual meeting in November.


–Maribel Rios