Detergents are used for the cleaning of ground floor, wall surfaces as well as pipes and equipments in pharmaceutical industry. To choose a proper detergents is the primary issue of cleaning process development. There are different types of detergents for pharmaceutical industry as below.
Organic detergent is used sometimes in pharmaceutical industry. For example, methanol can be used for cleaning during the synthesis of small molecule APIs. Isopropanol can also be used to clean parts during the preparation process manually
Alkali detergents are often used in the alkaline washing process. Sodium hydroxide solution is one common choice, of which the high alkalinity increases the solubility of residues during organic synthesis process . Compared with other detergents, sodium hydroxide is easy to detect, and easy to verify the removal. High pH value of sodium hydroxide solution will act with ions such as calcium, magnesium and iron during the cleaning process.
Cationic detergents are more strongly absorbed on fabrics that are anionic or nonionic surfactants. They are used as wetting agents, fabric softeners, bacteriostats and emulsifiers. This type of synthetic detergent are not with as good decontamination ability as anionic type. However, it has good ability to kill bacteria, so can also be used as a disinfectant. Trigermide solution(benzalkonium bromide solution) is a common quaternary ammonium salt disinfectant.
Anionic detergents, such as ammonium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, sodium lauryl sarcosinate and sodium myreth sulfate, are the sodium salts in which a lipophilic hydrocarbon group of the molecule is an anion.
Water as detergent
Water is usually used in the preparation of pre-rinsing, post-rinsing, and diluents in pharmaceutical equipment cleaning. However, water can also be used as a detergent if residues are easily soluble in water. Normally, the water used as detergent should be at least as good as the water used for pharmaceutical production. And the microbiological and endotoxin limits also should be considered while choose water as detergent.
Except for types of detergents, some factors such as cleaning time,, concentration of detergents and temperature are also important for develop pharmaceutical equipment cleaning process development.