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Remarkable enhancement of productivity for drugs through new real-time quality control

06.09.2005


The Technical Research Centre of Finland, VTT has developed a new method, which increases product development cycle. This process will also enhance the competitiveness of drug development and reduce costs. VTT is working in collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline, GSK, one of the leading international pharmaceutical companies, to enhance quality control for drugs by using Process Analytical Technologies (PAT). The goal of the PAT is to develop drug process’ production analysis into real-time quality control and to decrease significantly production costs.



VTT’s optical measurement methods, in drug production, will help pharmaceutical companies increase the quality and safety of their products. Manufacturing cost of drugs play an important role in the cost of pharmaceutical products, as 40% of the price is coming from production.

One of the major problems in developing drug manufacturing processes is the lack of fast and reliable measurement techniques. At the moment, the quality measurement technique consists mainly of slow laboratory analyses, which do not enable real-time quality control. The effective manufacturing of a drug takes only one to two days whereas in practice the whole manufacturing process may take as long as 30-60 days.


VTT has one of the world’s largest groups of specialists, totally 45 man-years annual volume, developing on new process measurement equipment. At the moment, VTT has developed state-of-art optical instrumentation mainly for other process industries such as pulp&paper and metal. In this project the challenge is to transfer and utilize this Finnish process measurement knowledge to the pharmaceutical processes. VTT will collaborate with GSK to improve GSK drug manufacturing processes by using the high-tech PAT technologies.

VTT and GSK assignment is significant for VTT as the two -year project is worth up to 1.5 million Euro. The main target of this project is to create and develop new innovative measurement systems and business opportunities to Finnish measurement and sensor companies. Measurement systems will be tested in several production lines including GSK plants in UK, Italy, Spain and Canada.

Finnish industry has been to the forefront in developing strong industrial process understanding, strongly supported by the collaborative R&D work undertaken by renowned institutes such as VTT. The various R&D programs have been coordinated, advised and supported by Tekes, the Finnish national technology agency, whose strategy is to develop new international links for Finnish technology abroad.

Irene Hernberg | alfa
Further information:
http://www.vtt.fi

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