Polyethylene Glycol 400
Excipient (pharmacologically inactive substance)
What is Polyethylene Glycol 400?
Polyethylene glycol, referred to as PEG, is used as an inactive ingredient in the pharmaceutical industry as a solvent, plasticizer, surfactant, ointment and suppository base, and tablet and capsule lubricant. PEG has low toxicity with absorption into the body less than 0.5%.
PEGylation occurs when PEGs are attached to various protein medications, allowing for greater solubility for certain drugs. Examples of PEGylated medications include PEG-interferon alpha (Pegintron) and PEG-filgrastim (Neulasta). PEG is also available as a bowel prep for colonoscopy procedures and as a laxative.
PEG "400" indicates that the average molecular weight of the specific PEG is 400. PEG 3350 is a laxative available over-the-counter by the name of Miralax. In this case, PEG is considered an "active" ingredient, even though systemic absorption is less than 0.5%.
 Dave RH. Overview of pharmaceutical excipients used in tablets and capsules. Drug Topics (online). Advanstar. 10/24/2008 http://drugtopics.modernmedicine.com/drugtopics/Top+News/Overview-of-pharmaceutical-excipients-used-in-tabl/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/561047. Accessed 08/19/2011
Top Medications Containing Polyethylene Glycol 400
- Ciprofloxacin Hydrochloride 500 mg (Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Inc.)
- Citalopram Hydrobromide 20 mg (Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Inc.)
- Citalopram Hydrobromide 40 mg (Aurobindo Pharma)
- Citalopram Hydrobromide 20 mg (InvaGen Pharmaceuticals, Inc)
- Citalopram Hydrobromide 40 mg (InvaGen Pharmaceuticals, Inc)
- Hydrocodone Bitartrate and Ibuprofen 7.5 mg / 200 mg (Watson Laboratories, Inc.)
- Hydroxyzine 25 mg (Glenmark Generics Inc.)
- Mirtazapine 15 mg (Teva Pharmaceuticals USA)
- Nabumetone 500 mg (Sandoz Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- OxyContin 40 mg (Purdue Pharma LP)
- OxyContin 20 mg (Purdue Pharma LP)
- OxyContin 80 mg (Purdue Pharma LP)
- OxyContin 10 mg (Purdue Pharma LP)
- OxyContin 60 mg (Purdue Pharma LP)
- OxyContin 30 mg (Purdue Pharma LP)
- Sertraline Hydrochloride 50 mg (Camber Pharmaceuticals)
- Sertraline Hydrochloride 100 mg (InvaGen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.)
- Zolpidem Tartrate 10 mg (Teva Pharmaceuticals USA)
- Zolpidem Tartrate 10 mg (Aurobindo Pharma)
- Zolpidem Tartrate 5 mg (Teva Pharmaceuticals USA)