Hot melt extrusion (HME) is a continuous pharmaceutical manufacturing process that has been extensively inves-tigated for solubility improvement and taste masking of active pharmaceutical ingredients. Recently, it is being explored for its application in 3D printing. 3D printing of pharmaceuticals allows flexibility of dosage form design, customization of dosage form for personalized therapy and the possibility of complex designs with the inclusion of multiple actives in a sin-gle unit dosage form. Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is a 3D printing technique with a variety of applications in pharma-ceutical dosage form development. FDM process requires a polymer filament as the starting material that can be obtained by hot melt extrusion. Recent reports suggest enormous applications of a combination of hot melt extrusion and FDM technol-ogy in 3D printing of pharmaceuticals and need to be investigated further. This review in detail describes the HME process along with its application in 3D printing. The review also summarizes the published reports on the application of HME cou-pled with 3D printing technology in drug delivery.
Keywords: Hot Melt Extrusion, 3D printing, Additive manufacturing, Fused deposition modeling, Rapid prototyping
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