Orally Dissolving Pharmaceutical Drugs - The Future of 2021

Orally Dissolving Pharmaceutical Drugs

December 1, 2019 – a day that will be remembered in history when Corona (COVID-19) was first identified.It is nearing the end of 2020 and we are still working on successful clinical trials of any drug or vaccine for COVID-19. Experts have claimed that the vaccine might require a year or two to be successfully formulated and administered to the global population at large.This situation brings with itself a bigger problem – that of administering the vaccine.As we are already aware, COVID-19 is extremely contagious and can be easily transferred from one person to another through surface contact, it makes sense to be skeptical of the current existing modes of drug administration, almost all of which require some sort of surface contact with a non-organic material (syringes, droppers, etc.).

How should we tackle this simple, yet unavoidable, dilemma?

The answer might not have been that simple a decade ago, but today we indeed have a seamless solution for this problem – Oral Thin Films(OTFs) are polymeric films designed to deliver therapeutic elements into the oral cavity or the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, where they are absorbed and routed to the circulatory system directly. As such, OTFs can rapidly deliver hydrophilic as well as hydrophobic active compounds.

Types of OTF

There are two types of Oral Thin Films:


This type of thin film is characterised by its ability to stick to the oral cavity while slowly releasing the drug into the patient’s systemic circulation. The medication enters the patient’s bloodstream directly and can thus be transported to the target organ faster.


In contrast to the previous type, this type of film is characterised by its instant breakdown immediately upon coming into contact with the patient’s saliva. These can be further sub-classified into two types: Orally Disintegrating & Orally Dissolving.Orally Disintegrating disintegrate in the mouth upon contact with saliva, then dissolve and get absorbed in the gastro-intestinal tract (a method highly effective to transport hydrophobic drug compounds that would otherwise be very difficult to be dissolved and absorbed into the body through other conventional methods).Orally Dissolving disintegrate and dissolve simultaneously into the saliva (more appropriate for water-soluble compounds that are easier to be absorbed into the body).

Some More Benefits of Using Orally Dissolving Pharmaceutical Drugs

1. Precision

Since the films can be directly absorbed through one of the methods described above, it makes it easier to have a precise dose that can be altered depending upon the target patient. For example, in the case of dealing with children, who need a smaller dosage compared to adults, the same film can be altered to a lower dosage.

2. Easier Manufacturing

These films are developed using powderless and aqueous-based processes that do not use solvents. This not only helps in accelerating the manufacturing process but also makes the process seamless, ultimately saving on time and cost.

3. Customization

The drug delivery system through OTFs is an ideal option for patients as they do not need to chew, swallow, or use water to ingest the drug. Furthermore, the films are highly customisable and can have flavors and colors added to them to make them more palatable.Following the above-mentioned discussion, one can only appreciate the effectiveness, ease of manufacture, and customisability of this relatively new method of drug administration. Oral Thin Films are expected to ensure a seamless, more efficient, and hassle-free future in medication.

About ZIM Laboratories

ZIM Labs is an innovative drug delivery solution provider focusing on improving patient convenience and adherence to drug intake. We offer a range of technology-based drug delivery solutions and non-infringing proprietary manufacturing processes for the production and supply of innovative and differentiated generic pharmaceutical products to our customers globally. At ZIM Labs we provide our customers a comprehensive range of value-added solid dosage differentiated generic products in semi-finished and finished categories/formulations. These include granules, pellets (sustained, modified, extended-release), taste-masked powders, suspensions, tablets, capsules, and recently developed Oral Thin Films (OTF).


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