Since the introduction into the market of HPMCP (hypromellose phthalate) in 1971 as alternative cellulose derivative for enteric coating it has been demonstrated to be an effective and safe material by many researchers.


HPMCP is widely used as an enteric coating agent by the pharmaceutical industry. HPMCP has been admitted into the U.S. National Formulary (USP/NF), European Pharmacopoeia (EP), and Japanese Pharmacopoeia (JP).


The chemical structure of HPMCP is a monophthalic acid ester of hypromellose (hydroxypropyl methylcellulose), and the threshold pH value for rapid disintegration of HPMCP can be controlled by varying the phthalyl content. Two types of HPMCP with different in pH-solubilities, HP-55 and HP-50, are available. Moreover, HP-55S, a special type of HP-55, which is distinguished by its higher molecular weight, greater film strength and higher acid resistance properties, has also been introduced. A suitable grade of HPMCP for a particular purpose should be selected in accordance with each preparation.


HPMCP Applications

An enteric coating agent is used to protect drugs from degradation by gastric acid or to protect gastric mucosa from irritating drugs. Thus, an enteric coating agent is insoluble in gastric juice, and it immediately dissolves when the enteric preparation transfers to the small intestine. HPMCP (Hypromellose Phthalate) and Shin-Etsu AQOAT® (Hypromellose Acetate Succinate) is an introduction into the market as an alternative cellulose derivative for enteric coating.


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