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Pharmaceutical Science Laboratories

MODEL Various
AVAILABILITY Official workshop hours are: 9:30 to 12.30 and 13.30 to 16:30 (in practice technicians are often available outside of these times)
CONTACT 1 External enquiries: Martine Dobson - Funding, Development & Support
CONTACT 2 Internal enquiries: Tony Dickson - Principal Technician
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SITE Harris Site


The pharmaceutical science laboratories provide state-of-the-art equipment for the preparation of various conventional solid and liquid dosage forms; including tablets, capsules, suspensions, emulsions, creams and gels. These instruments are not only used for teaching to help facilitate students’ learning in applying their knowledge to various pharmaceutical applications, but they are of great importance for research too. For example, the availability of the coating equipment and hotmelt extruder within the School also enable the production of more sophisticated design of dosage forms with tailored drug release profiles. The laboratories also contain a 3D printer that allows accurate layer-by-layer design for various pharmaceutical preparations. In addition, the preparation and characterisation of the raw materials and the final products is also performed using a range of equipment, such as the flowability tester, tapped density tester, powder mixer, granulator, friability tester, tablet hardness tester, disintegration and dissolution testers (USP-2 and USP4), spray dryer and freeze dryer, which are all frequently used for the manufacturing of solid dosage forms. Moreover, analytical equipment is also available which is essential for understanding the physicochemical properties, the state of materials, purity and stability of the aforementioned preparations, including DSC (conventional DSC and nanoDSC) , TGA, tensiometer, refractometer, rheometer, FTIR, UV-Vis spectrophotometer, nephelometer, HPLC, flash chromatography, NMR, LC-MS, XRD and GPC etc.

Indeed, the aforementioned facilities help support the process of drug discovery to formulation development at UCLan. We have synthetic capabilities, drug design expertise, including molecular modelling, and formulation design within our research group. With advances on nanotechnology, nanomedicine is a popular research area that is well-established at the School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences and indeed across the University. We have specialist advanced equipment and expertise on lipidic and polymeric nanoparticulate drug delivery systems for applications, not exclusive in, but namely pulmonary, nasal and transdermal delivery. For example, the development of sprays and aerosols is assisted by our Spraytec laser diffraction system, where the spray particle and droplet size distributions of the preparations can be measured and optimised, whilst the twin impinger is a very useful tool for the study of aerosols discharge from inhalational devices. Drug permeation through the skin from conventional and nano-sized samples can be investigated using the Franz diffusion model on porcine skin. Therefore, the quality and stability of the prepared products can be tested and analysed effectively using these equipment.

Routine use of the nanosizing equipment such as the homogeniser, sonicating probe, NanoDeBee and Planetary Ball Mill PM 100 allow both small and large scale production of nanosized colloidal preparations such as suspensions and emulsions, for oral as well as parenteral applications. Subsequent characterisation on the size and charge of the particles can be carried out using Malvern DLS Zeta sizer as well as the Master sizer 2000 Hydro 2000SM for use with larger particle size samples. With the aid of these instruments, the laboratories have the capacity for researchers to develop various formulations and drug delivery systems with potential biomedical exploitations.

Key equipment available

  • Single-punch tablet press
  • Capsule filler
  • Flowability tester
  • Powder mixer (planetary / cube)
  • Granulator
  • Coater
  • Friability tester
  • Tapped density tester
  • Tablet hardness tester
  • Disintegration tester
  • Dissolution tester (USP-2 and USP-4)
  • IKA homogeniser
  • Probe sonicator
  • 3D printer
  • DSC and nanoDSC
  • TGA
  • Tensiometer
  • Refractometer
  • Polarimeter
  • Rheometer
  • FTIR
  • UV-Vis Spectrophotometer
  • Nephelometer
  • HPLC
  • Flash Chromatography
  • GPC
  • Liposome extruder
  • Spray dryer
  • Freeze dryer
  • NanoDeBee
  • Planetary Ball Mill PM 100
  • Spraytec laser diffraction system
  • Twin impinger
  • Franz diffusion cells
  • Malvern DLS Zeta sizer
  • Master sizer 2000 Hydro 2000SM

See associated items links below.

Associated Items

Item ID #12.

Last Updated: 9th November, 2016