Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC), also known as hypromellose, is produced through the synthetic alteration of the natural polymer cellulose and is considered safe for human consumption. HPMC is rapidly being used as an alternative to hard shell gelatin capsules, since these natural capsules are manufactured using plant extracts. They meet the dietary and cultural needs of vegetarians by offering excellent alternatives to gelatin capsules. The HPMC material is present in the form of an off-white powder or granules which are hygroscopic and practically insoluble in hot water, acetone, and chloroform, but disintegrate readily in cold water, forming a colloidal solution due to their thermal reversible gelation property. The FDA clinical trials for the safety of HPMC material using rats have exhibited no adverse reaction to this material. It is therefore considered safe for human consumption. Also, the capsules’ in-vitro studies have displayed better performance in terms of dissolution/disintegration and decreased time of development compared to gelatin capsules.
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The global hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules market is witnessing an unprecedented growth rate. Several clinical trials and research studies are directed toward the HPMC encapsulation of new as well as existing drugs. Gelatin capsules hold a significant share in the pharmaceutical market. The HPMC capsules have significant opportunity of capturing this market space. The drawbacks of gelatin capsules such as water content, along with the significant acceptance of as well as demand from vegetarians for alternatives create excellent opportunities for HPMC capsules to capture this market space. They are also encapsulation machine-friendly, and do not require for them to be re-arranged or modified.
The global hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules market has been segmented based on product type into the following divisions: pectin, carrageenan, glycerin, gellan gum, and others. In terms of capsule size, the market is classified into the following segments: 00, 0, 1, 2, 3, and 4. On the basis of route of administration, the global hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules market is categorized into the oral, inhalation, vaginal, and rectal categories. Oral HPMC capsules are expected to account for a significant market share due to their ease of administration, significant utilization rates, and effective masking of the taste and odor of the medicines within. By end-use industry, the market is split into the following sections: pharmaceuticals, food, neutraceuticals, dentistry, cosmetics, and others. The utilization rate of HPMC capsules in the pharmaceutical industry is likely to increase rapidly, followed by neutraceuticals. The increasing trend of acquiring established regional manufacturers to carry out independent in-house manufacturing of HPMC capsules in order to reduce the production expenditure with advanced technologies has been observed among major players operating in the global market. However, stability issues related to the capsules for certain drugs may restrain the market.
On the basis of geography, the global hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules market has been distributed over five regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific is predicted to reflect a high CAGR due to the significant vegetarian population, multiple HPMC capsule manufacturers, changing government regulations & guidelines for the human consumption of HPMC capsules, and adoption of better health care facilities. North America is projected to dominate the global hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules market owing to factors such as the increasing innovations in technologically advanced products, immense per capita health expenditures, and significant investments in R&D for effective treatment alternatives.
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Key players in the global hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules market include Capsugel Belgium NV, ACG-Associated Capsules, Catalent, Inc, Qualicaps Co., Ltd., Suheung Capsule Co., Ltd., SUNIL HEALTHCARE LIMITED, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation, ACG World, and Encap, among others.