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The effect of powder properties on the filling of antibiotics into vials

Beard, Timothy; (1997) The effect of powder properties on the filling of antibiotics into vials. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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In the filling of drug powders into vials, thereis widespread variation in the behaviour of the material, both from one drug to another, and between different batches of the same drug. The vacuumetric technique, in which powder is drawn into a cylindrical port by suction, applied through a porous piston and ejected by pressure into the vial, offers a fast pharmaceutical production method, and is exemplified by the Perry Accofil machine. In order to examine the vacuumetric process in detail, a small scale 4-port version of a Perry machine has been constructed. It is driven by a computer-controlled stepping motor, so that the required intermittent motion of the driving wheel, the length of the pause at the filling position and the rate of rotation of the paddles moving powder towards the ports inside the feed hopper can all be independently controlled (which is not possible in the industrial machine, as these motions are all geared together). In addition, the ports have been constructed sectionally as a pile of metal annuli, so that, after filling, the powder plug can be dissected to examine any variation in density that there may be along its length. Several batches of fine-grade cefuroxime sodium and three commercial penicillin formulations have been subjected to intensive particle-size determination by a range of methods; Coulter counter, Malvern laser-light scattering, photo-scanned sedimentation, aerodynamic sizing, Fischer sub-sieve sizing and electron microscopy. Considerable differences are found between the results for size distribution obtained by the various methods. The computer-controlled machine was used to fill vials over a range of speeds and port depths, so that the correlations could be obtained between powder properties and filling behaviour. Correlation in general was weak but informative, and the small machine itself proved so useful in filling that a second one was commissioned by Glaxo, the industrial sponsor of the project, and has been used to generate a database of optimal filling conditions for a wider range of production formulations, in addition to leading to some suggestions for alterations in the design of larger machines.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: The effect of powder properties on the filling of antibiotics into vials
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Health and environmental sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10105040
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