Non animal capsule shell

Hypromelose

Advantages
The non-animal origin of HPMC capsules ensures full compatibility with Halal and Kosher certifications and compared to gelatin the raw material offers many technological benefits. Due to its low moisture content which ranges from 4 to 6%, the HPMC is a perfect choice for moisture-sensitive drugs. Even after storage under harsh condition the capsules won't retain elevated moisture levels. Unlike gelatin, HPMC doesn't tend to form cross-linked bonds which results in high stability and well-defined dissolution profiles.

Disadvantages
Processing of a thin HPMC film is not so simple as with gelatin, the actual manufacturing time become slightly longer. Each manufacturer posses of his own patented process of gelation which subsequently affects the dissolution profiles. Thus, hypromellose capsules from different manufacturers are not interchangeable for every purpose (unlike in gelatin).


Hypromelose with gellan

Capsugel launched DRcaps, a vegetarian capsule with acid-resistant properties. They are made of hypromellose as well as Vcaps, but they contain a gelling agent and water in addition. Thanks to its properties, the capsules provide adequate protection from the stomach environment without the need for aditional coating. This makes it a perfect solution for drugs unsuitable for coating as well for saving extra costs. Drcaps provide the same benefits as other capsules which means the ability to mask unpleasant tastes and odors. The moisture content of DRcaps is low (4-6%).


Pullulan

Pullulan is a water soluble polysacharide produced from starch by the fungus Aerobasidium pullulans. It is a natural, biodegradable polymer, whose distinct advantage over gelatin capsules is that almost impermeable to oxygen. Thus recommended for encapsulating oxidation-sensitive ingredients, while there is less need for anti-oxidants. Despite the fact, that pullulan is a relatively modern material it has already achieved broad regulatory acceptance around the world, even in Asia.

Advantages
Capsules of pullulan meet many strict demands of customers from all over the world. Whether these requirements tem from cultural or other reasons, pullulan offers an affordable alternative with no compromise. It is starch-free, gluten-free, preservative-free, vegetal origin and non-GMO. They received the GRAS status and both Halal and Kosher certification. The raw material is very stable, matching the performance characteristics of gelatin. Pullulan-based capsules have disintegration times and dissolution profiles essentially equivalent. On the other hand, they provide easy swallowability with fast esophageal transit time and avoids the Maillard reaction.

Disadvantages
The disadvantage of unmodified pullulan capsule film is its adhesive nature or tackiness when touched by hand. The rapid remoisturing properties of pullulan results in a perceived tackiness when holding the capsule film in the hand for 30 seconds or more. An additional disadvantage is evident on swallowing the capsule film as it may adhere to the tongue, palate, throat or oesophagus. However, this problem might be easily solved by adding various water soluble surfactants.