Carbon dioxide can accelerate crystalisation

A new study suggests pressurised carbon dioxide can accelerate crystalisation during drug production, and potentially save manufacturers time and money.

Professor Jerry Atwood of the department of chemistry at the University of Missouri, US published details of the research in a recent paper entitled “A New Strategy of Transforming Pharmaceutical Crystal Forms.”

He claims that crystals can be created “with ease” using pressurised carbon dioxide at room temperature in place of more time consuming methods of production that involve in high temperature, raw material modification, washing, filtering and intensive drying.

“I believe this could have huge implications for the pharmaceutical industry,” said Atwood. “In addition to streamlining processes, pressurising gas could circumvent some of the more difficult techniques used on an industrial scale, leading to better pharmaceuticals, more effective treatments and ultimately a lower price.”

Safer environment

The type of process used to create the crystals is dependent on the drug, but Atwood believes this new method will streamline manufacturing and provide a safer environment for workers.

He highlights the antibiotic, clarithromycin, and the acid reflux drug, examples of drugs that may benefit from this process.