Blister Materials – PVdC Structures

The History of Pharmaceutical Blister Packaging Materials – PVdC Structures

In Europe, the first pharmaceutical blister packages for contraceptives resulted in the selection of blister packaging as the preferred package for oral solid dosages. This soon resulted in a search for better barrier. This search was both anticipated and mirrored by events in food packaging.

As early as 1953/54, BASF commercialized an emulsion-grade PVdC known by the trade name Diofan®. BASF developed the base coat/top coat concept and began selling Diofan 220 D (base coat) and Diofan 180D (top coat) to paper converters for its barrier and adhesion properties.

By 1966 pharmaceutical companies were searching for better barrier. Development projects started at this time and in 1969 DIOFAN PVdC coatings launched commercially on PVC films for pharmaceutical projects. While several technologies were used to apply the emulsion to the PVC and subsequently dry it, pharmaceutical films required a heavier coating that food and multiple-pass coatings were developed to meet this need.

There were four “pioneer” companies moving PVdC into the pharmaceutical industry: Two from Switzerland (Perlen and Aernie Leuch), VAW from Germany, and DRG from the United Kingdom. Here are their stories…

Perlalux Duplex
In 1969 Dr. Spingler at Sandoz drove the development of one early PVdC structure. The project involved PVC from VKW Staufen, BASF’s Diofan® PVdC emusions (top and bottom coats) and Perlen to coat the PVC. The resulting product, marketed as Perlalux Duplex, offered 40g m² of PVdC coating on either 200 or 250 µm PVC.

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