Juniper Pharma Services scales up spray drying capability

Places an order with GEA Niro for a PSD-1 spray dryer

Juniper Pharma Services says it has made a 'substantial' investment in its spray drying capabilities.

The Nottingham, UK-based contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) has placed an order for a PSD-1 spray dryer with GEA Niro.

To date, Juniper has provided bench-top scale spray drying to support clients’ early phase proof-of-concept trials. This investment will allow the firm to scale-up the process to support later clinical phases and niche commercial scale.

Handling both aqueous and solvent based formulations, spray drying forms a key part of the company’s broad screening platform. It extends current spray drying capabilities by around 10 times, and will mimic the processing performance and controls of full scale production equipment.

Claire Madden-Smith: 'The decision to purchase this spray dryer is simply about scale and expanding the support we can deliver to help further our clients' development programmes'

Claire Madden-Smith, SVP at Juniper Pharma Services, said: 'This order forms part of a wider investment programme in our business that will see a significant step-up in our development and manufacturing capabilities over the next year.

'The decision to purchase this spray dryer is simply about scale and expanding the support we can deliver to help further our clients' development programmes. It also demonstrates our commitment to helping drug developers with both simple and complex formulation challenges.

'We have provided detailed understanding of drug in polymer development to our clients for more than 15 years, so this increase in manufacturing capability is a natural expansion. All going well, we expect our new equipment will be operational by Q4 2016.'

The PSD-1 will allow Juniper Pharma Services to provide drug developers with particle engineering options and making amorphous materials to help with solubility and bioavailability challenges.

Juniper’s clinical trials screening platform has gone from strength to strength since launching in 2014. Run by a dedicated in-house technical group, its offering brought together several processing capabilities including hot melt extrusion (HME), nano milling, self-emulsifying and self-microemulsifying drug delivery systems (SEDDS/SMEDDS), plus spray drying, which has enabled the CDMO to investigate, evaluate, and recommend a development pathway to its clients.

Madden-Smith added: 'Our screening platform has helped clients make critical decisions at an early stage in the drug development process based on robust data. Spray drying is one of several routes that clients end up adopting so it’s essential we have the capabilities and scale in place to help them choose a development pathway that will be the most time-, cost-, and volume-efficient.'

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