Our research at CMAC aims to make medicines better, by specifically designing crystals and particles of drug molecules and making them into something people can take like a tablet. Adding other ingredients, so called excipients, to the drug molecules can help to make better tablets, because they will keep longer, dissolve faster and will be better taken up by the body.
This video shows how to 3D print medicines by adding layers of material on top of each other to create a tablet. In our laboratory we use a process called Hot-Melt-Extrusion to prepare a filament, that looks like spaghetti. The process of making the spaghetti filament is a little like pushing soft Play-Doh through a Play-Doh press. The spaghetti filament contains the medicine, which can be drug molecules, crystals or particles and the excipient. Once we have made the filament, we can feed these into a 3D printer and print tablets in all sorts of sizes and shapes for children and adults.