3D printing tablets for individual pediatric patients: development of furosemide and sildenafil tablets

A clear unmet medical need exists for pediatric-centered drug formulations. Currently, it is often still necessary to either manipulate a marketed drug before it can be administered to a child, or to prepare an extemporaneous preparation by the pharmacist. As a highly flexible production technique, 3D printing can provide in this unmet need.

In this presentation, the product development of two active pharmaceutical ingredients, namely furosemide and sildenafil, will be presented.

Both drugs are frequently used in the pediatric population and both drugs lack a suitable pediatric-centered formulation. Using a semi-solid extrusion 3D printer, we developed formulations for both drugs with various suitable dosages for children. The focus of the presentation will be on the steps taken for academic development of these 3D-printed drug products and the roadmap that can take them into the clinical practice.

A presentation by Iris Lafeber, PhD candidate at Leiden University Medical Center

View of the speaker

Question 1: What drives you?
Truly enabling the production of personalised medicine by means of 3D printing and contributing to this rapidly evolving research field is what drives me.

Question 2: Why should the delegate attend your session?
In my presentation I would like to share with you how we think individualised 3D-printed drug products intended for the pediatric population can be brought into the clinical practice.

Question 3: What emerging technologies / trends do you see as having the greatest potential in the short and long run?
Pharmaceutical 3D printing has the potential to produce personalised medicine for a wide range of active pharmaceutical ingredients for all kinds of individual patients. I believe that shortly individualised 3D-printed drug products can be provided to the first patients with a need for improved personalised treatment. In the long run, more patients will be able to benefit from individualised 3D-printed drug products due to the ample advantages the flexible production technique provides.

Question 4: What kind of impact do you expect them to have?
It can be game-changing for personalised medicine. While the concept of personalised medicine is not new, the possibility of producing true personalised medicine was considered a barrier. With a 3D printer, the production of personalised medicine can truly be enabled.

Question 5: What are the barriers that might stand in the way?
As 3D-printed drug products are still relatively new, a resistance to change from various stakeholders is to be expected. With increasing technical and clinical knowledge and development, as well as the provision of regulatory guidelines, I believe the challenges can be overcome.

About Iris Lafeber
Iris Lafeber is a pharmacist. During her time as a pharmacist in training, she conducted research on 3D printing of pharmaceuticals at the Leiden University Medical Center in 2019. For this research she was awarded the Best Abstract prize of the NVZA at the Dutch hospital pharmacists’ conference in 2019. After obtaining her Master’s degree in Pharmacy in 2020, she immediately continued her research on 3D printing of pharmaceuticals at the Leiden University Medical Center as a PhD candidate. She focuses her research on semi-solid extrusion 3D printing of drug products, mainly intended for use in the pediatric population.

About Leiden University Medical Center
The Leiden University Medical Center is a center for medical innovation, that tries to improve patient healthcare through research. It trains doctors, specialist healthcare providers and researchers to contribute to this. Apart from regular patient healthcare, the LUMC offers specialised treatments that can only be performed in a limited number of medical centers. The LUMC distinguishes itself as a referral center for complex medical question for which there are no readily available answers. Researchers and doctors work together towards a better understanding of diseases and innovative treatment options.

Iris Lafeber is speaker at the 2022 edition of the 3D Pharma Printing Conference which is a part of the 3D Medical Printing Series

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