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AAPS PharmSciTech. 2006 June; 7(2): E72–E78.
Published online 2006 April 28. doi:  10.1208/pt070241
PMCID: PMC2750292

Fast-disintegrating sublingual tablets: Effect of epinephrine load on tablet characteristics


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of increasing epinephrine load on the characteristics of fast-disintegrating sublingual tablets for the potential emergency treatment of anaphylaxis. Four tablet formulations, A, B, C, and D, containing 0%, 6%, 12%, and 24% of epinephrine bitartrate, respectively, and microcrystalline cellulose:low-substituted hydroxypropyl cellulose (9[ratio]1), were prepared by direct compression, at a range of compression forces. Tablet weight variation, content uniformity, hardness, disintegration time, wetting time, and friability were measured for each formulation at each compression force. All 4 tablet formulations at each compression force were within the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) limits for weight variation and content uniformity. A linear increase in compression force resulted in an exponential increase in hardness for all formulations, a linear increase in disintegration and wetting times of A, and an exponential increase in disintegration and wetting times of B, C, and D. At a mean±SD hardness of ≥2.3±0.2 kg, all tablet formulations passed the USP friability test. At a mean±SD hardness of ≤3.1±0.2 kg, all tablet formulations resulted in disintegration and wetting times of <10 seconds and <30 seconds, respectively. Tablets with drug loads from 0% to 24% epinephrine can be formulated with hardness, disintegration times, and wetting times suitable for sublingual administration.

Keywords: sublingual, transmucosal drug delivery, fastdisintegrating tablets, epinephrine, anaphylaxis

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Selected References

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