Drug delivery technologies for food, feed and pharmaceutical applications

Drug delivery technologies for food, feed and pharmaceutical applications

20 November 2014

Develop new and innovative formulations with Seppic’s drug delivery system platform and overcome the challenges of fragile or bad tasting actives

Pharmaceutical companies need to reformulate old active APIs in order to launch new galenic forms on the market. The purpose of this trend is to overcome competition from generic companies or file new patents. API should be formulated in such a way that delivery into the body is changed compared to the old formulation.

With food and feed, the problem is somewhat different: All companies are willing to add nutrients or actives that have significantly decreased in, if not disappeared of, our modern alimentation into food supplements. But these actives are often fragile (vitamins, antioxidants, etc.) or have a very bad taste (metallic salts) or do not withstand stomach conditions (low pH and presence of various enzymes).

To overcome these problems whilst allowing customers to develop new and innovative formulations, SEPPIC provides a drug delivery system platform using proprietary technologies developed with SEPPIC raw materials.

Technologies available for food and feed

The following technologies are available to produce capsules that can be used to control delivery of actives whilst making bad taste or odour disappear if required.

The technology consists in melting a mixture of Seppic’s solid food or feed approved products, adding the active ingredient into the melt and making small liquid droplets, by means of vibrating nozzles or spinning disks. When droplets fall into fresh air or liquid nitrogen, they become solid and are transformed into spherical solid microbeads containing the active ingredient.



Complex coacervation:
The technology consists in making a thin shell of 2 polymers (most often gelatin and arabic gum) around a water insoluble core. The core can be oil containing a lipophilic active ingredient or a solid drug. The main advantage of this technology is that the amount of active ingredient in the capsules can be as high as 70-80%. It can be used for taste masking or for preventing incompatibilities between several ingredients.

Adsorption onto porous substrates:
Liquid active ingredient is entrapped into the pores of a solid porous support. If sustained release or enteric capsules are required, additional coating of the obtained capsules is possible. This technology is mainly used to transform liquid into solid and to allow the incorporation of a liquid ingredient into tablets, capsules or sticks.

Additional technology for pharmacy:

Ion exchange resins
Using porous ionic supports such as ion exchange resins allows creating ionic bonds between the support and the drug (if ionisable). These ionic bound bonds are disrupted in the presence of salts contained in the biological fluids (saliva, gastric juice, sweat, etc.). This property can be used to perform taste masking or sustained release.


 Cryogenic prilling pilot