Lactose monohydrate is a natural disaccharide, obtained from milk, which consists of one galactose and one glucose moiety.
Lactose is widely used as a filler and diluent in tablets and capsules, and to a more limited extent in lyophilized products and infant formulas. Lactose is also used as a diluent in dry powder inhalation. Usually, fine grades of lactose are used in the preparation of tablets by the wetgranulation method or when milling during processing is carried out, since the fine size allows better mixing with other formulation ingredients and utilizes the binder more efficiently.
Lactose is also used in the manufacture of dry powder formulations for use as aqueous film coating solutions or suspensions. Directcompression grades are often used to carry lower quantities of drug and this permits tablets to be made without granulation. Other directly compressible lactose is spraydried lactose and anhydrous lactose.
Lactose is also used in variety of applications, from browning in baked goods and sweetening in desserts, to excipient in neutraceuticals and homeopathic preparations, as a bulking agent for soups, sauces and processed meats, Chocolates and confectionery, Sucrose substitute.