Aston Particle Technologies offers a novel one-step micro/nano particle layering technology that processes materials without the use of solvent or heat. Its USP lies in engineering micro particle surfaces by deposition of fine, cohesive secondary material giving rise to tailored composite particles.

APT Dry Particle Coating Technology

APT's novel technology is based on an innovative surface engineering technique designed to enhance material functionality through particle layering in the dry status. Dry powder coating involves the adsorption/adherence of "guest" particles onto the surface of "carrier" particles. This process requires conditions that enable frequent contact between guest and carrier particles, particle adsorption, and ultimately lowering of surface energy of the binary mixture.

Existing technologies are based on multi-step liquid based processes that are not suitable for heat and moisture sensitive materials. There is an inherent limitation in the availability of techniques for particle surface modification that do not chemically or physically modify the innate properties of the particle itself. During surface modification using currently available techniques, particles need to be stable enough to withstand high temperatures, exposure to moisture and high pressures throughout processing, therefore limiting the use of such techniques for unstable drugs (e.g. heat, moisture and physical instability).

Pharmaceutical Applications of APT Technology

Various applications have been investigated using APT dry particle coating technology that are useful to end-users in the pharmaceutical industry. We have generated extensive data to demonstrate advantageous formulation for multiple applications, including the following examples:

Content Uniformity

Content uniformity is a key parameter for potent drugs, which have a low loading and narrow therapeutic index. The technology at APT can deliver 99.5% homogeneity for drug load between 0.5-10%w/w with RSD <2% (Figure 1).

Fine Particle Fraction

The fine particle fraction (FPF), Figure 3 shows the superiority of APT formulation to Seretide® for the total amount of respirable material, percentage emitted and the FPF.

Powder Flowability

The blends processed using APT dry coating technology demonstrated significant flowability enhancement compared to cube mixing. Processing the blend for two minutes (Figure 4) using APT technology improved the powder flow from passable/fair to good flow, while processing for 5 minutes increased the flowability to excellent.

Dissolution Rate

The application of APT technology enabled dissolution rate and extent enhancement of poorly soluble model drug (carbamazepine, CBZ). Figure 5 shows enhancement of dissolution rate and extent of APT's CBZ formulation when compared to micronised particles.

Solubility Enhancement

The solubility of carbamazepine was enhanced upon dry coating using APT technology. As illustrated in Figure 6, the solubility of carbamazepine was improved by almost 40% using APT technology.