Trends and innovations in vaccine packaging
The first panel discussion on Day 2 of the Pharma Packaging and Labelling (PPL) Conclave 2019 was on trends and innovations in vaccine packaging. Mohan Mone, the moderator of the session, talked about the history of vaccines and how it has evolved over the years. In his presentation, he emphasised that since Edward Jenner invented the method of arm to arm inoculation for small pox in 1796, the concept of vaccine has evolved considerably. His presentation also talked about how new trends are shaping the industry and transforming formulations, improving dose accuracy, product economics, etc,. He also spoke on the need for tailor-made packaging in vaccines. He moved on to discuss about the cold chain monitor system and its utilisation since all vaccines are temperature sensitive and needs to be stored in certain temperature.
Rajendra Suthar talked about the challenges which vaccine manufacturers face while labelling their products. Highlighting the space constraints on vials, he said that due to the size of vial/ ampoules, companies find it difficult in providing all the required information on the pack. He also informed that before labelling, vaccine vials are taken to cold rooms where they acquire moisture from the surface. Hence, the lead time for de-humidification should be considered before planning labelling operations. He also said that packaging is the last mile before it reaches to end consumer and to avoid any mishap during the transit, companies need to invest in time and money. He suggested that packaging of vaccines is a time-bound activity and while choosing a machine for labelling and packing, operational steps should be reduced and high speed machines needs to be procured.
Sudhakar Rao informed that his company Sanofi Pasteur invests more than 500 million euros every year in R&D every year. The company has 60 years of experience in polio vaccination and provides polio vaccine to UNICEF for over 25 years: IPV, OPVs. He also informed how vaccine packaging is changing from exclusively focussing on preserving the quality of enclosed medication to product protection, quality, anti- counterfeiting technology, patient comfort and security, new- technology in primary packing, temperature indicators and insulation technology and end-to-end cold chain. He also talked about different packaging technologies which have helped the industry to gain market focus in recent years.
During the panel discussion, experts also talked about factors such as easy vaccination, less contamination, good efficacy, convenience, etc. that packaging experts need to consider while designing and developing packaging solutions.
India will play a lead role in future scenario of vaccines packaging
Mohan Mone, Consultant, Pharmaceutical and Vaccine Packaging, Automation and Systems, PPIC
It is necessary that machine manufacturers, component manufacturers and vaccine manufacturers to work on development of new packaging in vaccines segment
Rajendra Suthar, Additional Director, Serum Institute of India
Blow fill seal technology in vaccine has gained much market focus in recent years
Sudhakar Rao, Head of SCM, Shantha Biotech-Sanofi