Due to the use of different materials in hollow vegetarian and gel caps(gelatin capsules) the identification test method for each is different. This article shows the advantages of vegetable capsules and gel caps(gelatin capsules) in their application.

The Raw Materials in Vegetable Capsules and Gel Caps (Gelatin Capsules)

1. The main component in medicinal vegetable capsules is hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose (HPMC), i.e. hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose. Cellulose is nature’s most resource-rich natural polymer. HPMC is usually derived from cotton linter or wood pulp made by etherification.

2. the main component in high-quality pharmaceutical gel caps is gelatin derived from animal skin, tendons, bones in the collagen, a protein from animal connective tissue or epidermal tissue collagen, partially hydrolyzed.

The Testing Methods of Vegetable Capsules and Gel Caps

The traits of vegetarian capsules and gelatin capsules are the same.

The material used in vegetarian capsules is hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose.

The identification of vegetarian capsules and gel caps is different.

The inspection checks of vegetarian capsules and gel caps checks is to the same standard – the dried vegetable capsule weightlessness standard being 2% to 7% and from 12.5% to 17% loss on the drying standard of gel caps. This is due to the hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose. On drying vegetable capsules this standard is 2% to 7%.

The Pharmacopoeia Methods for the Identification and Preparation of Sample

Identify and prepare a sample vegetarian capsule:

(1) to extract 1g of this product, add 20 to 25 ml of cold water, stirring constantly until the liquid becomes viscous. Add 2ml to a test tube, pouring the liquid slowly down the inside surface of the test tube.

(2) to extract the right amount of viscous liquid (1) pour onto a glass plate, leave until the water evaporates and forms a tough layer of film.

Identify and prepare a sample gelatin capsule:

(1) to extract 0.25g of this product add 50ml water. Heat it until dissolved and leave to cool. Add 5ml plus potassium dichromate test solution – mix with a few drops of hydrochloric acid (4%) solution to form a flocculent orange-yellow precipitate.

(2) to identify 1ml of the remainder of the solution (1) add 50ml water, add a few drops of tannic acid test solution and shake until turbid.

(3) put 0 3g of the product into a test tube. Add a little Sodium lime. Heat on the gas until a moist red litmus paper turns blue.

Distinguishing Dissolution of the Two Capsules (Vegetarian Capsules and Gelatin Capsules)

Cold water soluble: When capsules are placed in 25ml cold water gelatin capsules do not dissolve. vegetarian capsules dissolve gradually.

Distinguishing the Two Capsules Under Combustion

During combustion the vegetarian capsule produces the odor of cotton. The gelatin capsule produces the odor of protein similar to the smell of burning hair.

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