Lucideon has signed an exclusive feasibility, development and licence agreement with a subsidiary of oral and inhalation drug development company Skyepharma.
Under the agreement, Skyepharma's oral business will have access to Lucideon's proprietary iCRT-deter abuse deterrent controlled release technology.
iCRT-deter is a drug delivery technology part of Lucideon's inorganic controlled release platforms.
The technology has been designed in a way that makes drugs difficult to tamper with by several methods including chewing, heating and crushing, while maintaining the necessary controlled release properties.
Lucideon healthcare business manager Gemma Budd said: "With features such as an extremely high melting point, and a highly porous particulate structure that maintains the controlled release and abuse deterrent features even when crushed, we believe that iCRT-deter will play a pivotal role in deterring abuse of multiple prescription drugs in the future, a technological advancement that benefits not only patients and providers, but society as a whole.
"The iCRT technology platform has other pharmaceutical applications outside of abuse-deterrence, but this project is an excellent example of how we work with industry to maximise the properties of materials to meet their technical and commercial needs."
Lucideon will collaborate with Skyepharma's oral business in order to evaluate the feasibility of using the technology with an aim to create an abuse deterrent formulation of a major opioid for the US market.
After the success of the feasibility stage, Skyepharma will produce the product as a generic for the US market.
iCRT-deter has been developed as a result of the rising prescription drug abuse problem in many areas across the globe.
In the US, where drug abuse problem is recognised as an epidemic, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has proposed an action plan that includes the development of abuse-deterrent formulations of opioid products.