The standard of care for patients with Adrenal Insufficiency (AI) is suboptimal. Administration of hydrocortisone three times a day produces plasma cortisol fluctuations associated with negative health outcomes. Furthermore, there is a high inter-individual variability in cortisol need, necessitating a personalized approach. It is hypothesized that a personalized, sustained release formulation would enhance the pharmacotherapy by mimicking the physiological cortisol plasma concentration at a higher level. Therefore, a novel 24 h sustained release 3D printed (3DP) hydrocortisone formulation has been developed (M3DICORT) by coupling hot-melt extrusion with fused deposition modeling. A uniform drug distribution in the 3DP tablets is demonstrated by a content of 101.66 ± 1.60 % with an acceptance value of 4.01. Furthermore, tablets had a stable 24 h dissolution profile where the intra-batch standard deviation was ± 2.8 % and the inter-batch standard deviation was ± 6.8 %. Tablet height and hydrocortisone content were correlated (R2 = 0.996), providing a tool for easy dose personalization. Tablets maintained critical quality attributes, such as dissolution profile (f2 > 60) and content uniformity after process transfer from a single-screw extruder to a twin-screw extruder. Impurities were observed in the final product which should be mitigated before clinical assessment. To our knowledge, M3DICORT is the first 3DP hydrocortisone formulation specifically developed for AI.
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