Evaluation of capsule labelling for its wall contents as gelatin or non gelatin


  • Shallini Gupta Department of Pharmacology, Government Medical College, Jammu, J&K, India
  • Kanika Khajuria Department of Pharmacology, Government Medical College, Jammu, J&K, India
  • Niraj Kumar Department of Pediatrics, Sub District Hospital, Akhnoor, Jammu, J&K, India
  • Vijay Khajuria Department of Pharmacology, Government Medical College, Jammu, J&K, India




Capsule dosage form, Gelatin, HPMC, Non veg capsules, Vegetarian capsules


Background: Capsules are the most commonly used solid drug dosage form and are made up of gelatin or non gelatin. Currently the gelatin based capsules drug formulations are more used. However, current issue of vegetarian and non vegetarian capsules has come up due to recent Indian government initiative to promote vegetarian capsules.

Methods: There were 100 capsule dosage forms were examined for the gelatin or HPMC wall contents and nature of medicine contained in capsules, whether ayurvedic or allopathic.

Results: Out of 100 capsules studied 55 had gelatin wall base while 25 had HPMC and 20 capsule labels did not mention the nature of capsule wall constituent. Out of 55 gelatin capsules 30 were of allopathic while 25 capsules were of ayurvedic medicines. Among HPMC, 15 were ayurvedic while 10 allopathic. 20 capsules had no mention of its constituent and among these non labelled capsule formulations had 11 from ayurvedic and 9 from allopathic medicines.

Conclusions: The current study revealed that gelatin capsules forms bulk in Indian market. Even the gelatin capsules contained ayurvedic medicines while 10% of HPMC capsules contained allopathic medicines. Non labelled capsules formed 20% of total capsules. These findings suggest wider scope for promotion of HPMC based capsules.


Biyani MK. Choosing Capsules: A Primer.Capsules offer certain benefits over tablets for oral-solid dosage drugs, and several types of capsules are available. Pharmaceutical Technology. 2017;41(10):36-41.

Gullapalli RP, Mazzitelli CL. Gelatin and non-gelatin capsule dosage forms. J Pharm Sci. 2017;106:1453-65.

Sheladiya DV, Sodha H, Shah K, Desai T. Vegetable Capsule Shell. International Journal of Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences. 2012;1(3):1248-55.

Thacker T. Vegetarian capsules: Panel nixes Maneka Gandhi’s proposal to replace gelatin with cellulose. Live Mint, E-Paper, Last Published: Thu, Jan 25 2018.

Minutes of the 76th Meeting of Drugs Technical Advisory Board Held; DGHS, Nirman Bhawan; New Delhi, Jan 31st, 2017. Available at: http://www.cdsco.nic.in/writereaddata/Minutes%20of%2076th%20DTAB%20on%2031_01_2017.pdf [Last accessed on 2018 march 28].

WHO. Guidelines on Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies in relation to Biological and Pharmaceutical Products. WHO Guidelines on Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies in Relation to Biological and Pharmaceutical Products. 2003. Available at: http://www.who.int/biologicals/publications/en/whotse2003.pdf. [Last accessed on 2018 march 28].

Commissioner of the Search for FDA Guidance Documents - The Sourcing and Processing of Gelatin to Reduce the Potential Risk Posed by Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in FDA-Regulated Products for Human Use. U. S. Food and Drug Administration Home Page. [Last accessed on 2017 Jul 11]. Available at: https://www.fda.gov/RegulatoryInformation/Guidances/ucm125182.htm .

Indian Soaps and Toiletries Makers vs. Ozair Husain and Ors; 7 March 2013. Available at: https://www.indiankanoon.org/doc/27775458/. [Last accessed on 2018 March 29].

Augsburger LA. Hard and soft gelatin capsules in Modern Pharmaceutics GS Banker & CT Rhodes, Eds., and Marcel Dekker, Inc.: New York, NY; 1995:395-440.

Chandrika MV, Krishna MV, Jyothirmayi M. Alternatives for gelatin in the preparation of capsules. Adv J Pharm Life Sci Res. 2016;4(2):33-42.

Orlich MJ, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Sabaté J, Fan J, Singh PN, Fraser GE. Patterns of food consumption among vegetarians and non-vegetarians. Br J Nutr. 2014;112(10):1644-53.

Rizzo NS, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Sabate J, Fraser GE. Nutrient Profiles of Vegetarian and Non Vegetarian Dietary Patterns. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2013;113(12):1610-9. Published online 2013 Aug 27.

Al-Tabakha MM. HPMC Capsules: Current Status and Future Prospects. J Pharm Pharmaceut Sci. 2010;13(3):428-42 .

Prakash A, Soni H, Mishra A, Sharma P. Are your capsules vegetarian or nonvegetarian: An ethical and scientific justification. Indian J Pharmacol. 2017;49(5):401-4.




How to Cite

Gupta, S., Khajuria, K., Kumar, N., & Khajuria, V. (2018). Evaluation of capsule labelling for its wall contents as gelatin or non gelatin. International Journal of Basic & Clinical Pharmacology, 7(7), 1387–1390. https://doi.org/10.18203/2319-2003.ijbcp20182687



Original Research Articles