Hypromellose is an ingredient used in a wide variety of medications, and is not an approved medication.

Brand Names
Bion Tears, Clear Eyes Complete, Genteal, Genteal Tears, Genteal Tears Mild, Gonak, Goniovisc, Isopto Alkaline, Nature's Tears, Systane, Tears Lubricant, Tears Naturale, Tears Renewed
Generic Name
DrugBank Accession Number

Hypromellose, or hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) 8, is a semisynthetic, inert, and viscoelastic polymer that forms a colloid solution when dissolved in water. It acts as a thickening agent, coating polymer, bioadhesive, solubility enhancer in solid dispersions, and binder in the process of granulation and in modified release formulations 2. It is a commonly used as a delivery component in oral pharmaceutical products that provides the release of a drug in a controlled fashion, effectively increasing the duration of release of a drug to prolong its therapeutic effects 1. Hypromellose is also found in eye drops as a lubricant 3.

Small Molecule
  • Cellulose hydroxypropyl methyl ether
  • Cellulose, 2-hydroxypropyl methyl ether
  • Hipromelosa
  • Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose 2208
  • Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose 2910
  • Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose 4000
  • Hydroxypropyl methylcelluloses
  • Hydroxypropylmethylcellulose
  • Hypromellose
  • Hypromelloses



Used as an ophthalmic protectant and lubricant, in artificial tears, and as a diagnostic aid (contact lens procedures; gonioscopy).4

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Associated Conditions
Contraindications & Blackbox Warnings
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Hypromellose is the most commonly used in hydrophilic matrix fabrication. It allows for controlled release of drug substances, increasing duration of therapeutic effects 3. The physical characteristics of this drug resemble natural tears, providing lubrication to the ocular surface and maintaining corneal hydration in dry eye syndromes 7.

Hypromellose is considered an inert substance as it has no direct pharmacological activity. The viscosity promoting properties of hypromellose prolong the retention time and improve adhesion of synthetic tears to the cornea and conjunctiva. As a result, the tear film breakdown time is prolonged and/or the tear film stability is enhanced. A stable tear film protects the cornea from dryness and epithelial cells 6.

Hypromellose is a methyl and hydroxypropyl mixed ether of cellulose. It is utilized as artificial tears to prevent conjunctival and corneal damage due to impaired lacrimal secretions. It is also used as a visco-elastic promoting agent by maintaining a deep, viscous chamber and allowing for easier manipulation, helping the vitreous surface to be pushed back, thus preventing the formation of a postoperative flat chamber 5.

Mechanism of action

Promotes corneal wetting by the stabilization and thickening the precorneal tear film and prolonging the tear film breakdown time, which is usually shortened in dry eye conditions. Hypromellose also acts to lubricate and protect the eye 6.

The surface active properties of the vehicles found in artificial tears solutions act to stabilize the tear film and increase tear viscosity to prevent delay tear evaporation and delay tear drainage 4.

In the intact eye, the corneal surface is moistened primarily by the mucin that is produced in the conjunctiva. Mucin is adsorbed on the corneal surface and forms a hydrophilic surface. This creates a moisture barrier. In the typical dry eye, and particularly in case of mucin deficiency, the application of artificial tear fluid is highly recommended. Both its surface activity and its adsorptive capacity make hypromellose optimal for this use. Hypromellose has a physical-chemical action and leads to, in an aqueous solution, a reduced surface tension as well as an increased level of viscosity. Hypromellose adheres well to the cornea and conjunctiva and provides ample moisture. Irritation symptoms caused by blinking, which occur in the case of tear fluid deficiency, are therefore decreased and symptoms of epithelial desiccation are also alleviated 6.

UEpithelial cell adhesion moleculeNot AvailableHumans

Not systemically absorbed 6.

Volume of distribution

Not Available

Protein binding

Not Available

Not Available
Route of elimination

Not Available


Not Available


Not Available

Adverse Effects
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LD 50 (Rat): > 5 g/kg MSDS.

Hypromellose is considered low toxicity to non-toxic 8.

Adverse events may include blurred vision and contact dermatitis 4. Hypersensitivity and intolerance reactions may occur (for example, eye burning, pain, increased lacrimation, a sensation of foreign body, conjunctival hyperemia, eyelid swelling, pruritus). The stickiness sensation of the eyelids, the decreased sense of smell, photosensitivity 6.

Not Available
Pharmacogenomic Effects/ADRs
Not Available


Drug Interactions
This information should not be interpreted without the help of a healthcare provider. If you believe you are experiencing an interaction, contact a healthcare provider immediately. The absence of an interaction does not necessarily mean no interactions exist.
Not Available
Food Interactions
No interactions found.


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Product Ingredients
IngredientUNIICASInChI Key
Hypromellose 2208 (100 mPa.S)B1QE5P712KNot AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2208 (15000 mPa.S)Z78RG6M2N2Not AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2906 (4000 mPa.S)5EYA69XGATNot AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2906 (50 mPa.S)612E703ZUQNot AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2910 (15 mPa.S)36SFW2JZ0WNot AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2910 (15000 mPa.S)288VBX44JCNot AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2910 (3 mPa.S)0VUT3PMY82Not AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2910 (4000 mPa.S)RN3152OP35Not AvailableNot applicable
Hypromellose 2910 (50 mPa.S)1IVH67816NNot AvailableNot applicable
International/Other Brands
Hymelose / Hyprosol / Ikleen / Intavis / Irimist / Melose / Melose Drop / Methocel / Naifa / Optichlor / Takflur
Brand Name Prescription Products
NameDosageStrengthRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
EntrocelSolution18 mg/1mLOralMallinckrodt2009-06-012012-10-31US flag
GoniotaireSolution25 mg/1mLOphthalmicAltaire Pharmaceuticals Inc.2002-01-18Not applicableUS flag
Mc Methylcellulose Solution 1%Solution1 g / 100 mLRectalE Z Em, Inc.1982-12-312009-08-04Canada flag
Over the Counter Products
NameDosageStrengthRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
Alcon Tears 0.5%Solution0.5 %OphthalmicAlcon, Inc.1969-12-31Not applicableCanada flag
Alcon Tears 1%Solution1 %OphthalmicAlcon, Inc.1970-12-31Not applicableCanada flag
Alcon Tears Lubricant Eye DropsSolution / drops5 mg/1mLOphthalmicALCON LABORATORIES, INC.2022-03-01Not applicableUS flag
AQUA TEAR EYE DROPSSolution / drops3 mg/1mlOphthalmicบริษัท แม็กซิมอินเตอร์คอร์ปอร์เรชั่น จำกัด จำกัด2019-09-04Not applicableThailand flag
Artelac Lubricant Eye DropsSolution0.32 %OphthalmicBausch & Lomb Inc2005-03-252008-07-28Canada flag
AuroviscSolution20 mg/1mLOphthalmicAurolab2022-09-26Not applicableUS flag
Aurovisc Lubricant HYPROMELLOSE 2208 (15000 MPA.S) Gel/DropsSolution, gel forming / drops20 mg/1mLOphthalmicAurolab2022-09-26Not applicableUS flag
Aurovisc Lubricant HYPROMELLOSE 2208 (15000 MPA.S) Solution/DropsSolution / drops20 mg/1mLOphthalmicAurolab2022-09-26Not applicableUS flag
Corneo HypromelloseSolution0.3 %OphthalmicOrimed Pharma Corporation2015-09-16Not applicableCanada flag
EYE GLO MOIST EYE DROPSSolution / drops0.1 %w/vOphthalmicDuopharma Marketing Sdn. Bhd.2020-09-082021-12-12Malaysia flag
Mixture Products
NameIngredientsDosageRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
Advanced Eye Relief/ Redness Maximum ReliefHypromellose (5 mg/1mL) + Naphazoline hydrochloride (0.3 mg/1mL)Solution / dropsOphthalmicBausch & Lomb Incorporated2010-09-02Not applicableUS flag
Advanced Eye Relief/ Redness Maximum ReliefHypromellose (5 mg/1mL) + Naphazoline hydrochloride (0.3 mg/1mL)Solution / dropsOphthalmicPreferreed Pharmaceuticals Inc.2010-09-02Not applicableUS flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (2 mg/1mL) + Glycerin (2 mg/1mL) + Polyethylene glycol 400 (10 mg/1mL)LiquidOphthalmicAmerican Sales Company2010-09-06Not applicableUS flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (0.002 mg/1mg) + Glycerin (0.002 mg/1mg) + Polyethylene glycol 400 (0.01 mg/1mg)Solution / dropsOphthalmicGeri-Care Pharmaceuticals, Corp2018-06-01Not applicableUS flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (0.3 %) + Dextran (0.1 %)SolutionOphthalmicAlcon, Inc.2005-03-162009-02-24Canada flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (0.002 mg/1mg) + Glycerin (0.002 mg/1mg) + Polyethylene glycol 400 (0.01 mg/1mg)Solution / dropsOphthalmicNucare Pharmaceuticals,inc.2018-06-01Not applicableUS flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (0.002 mg/1mg) + Glycerin (0.002 mg/1mg) + Polyethylene glycol 400 (0.01 mg/1mg)Solution / dropsOphthalmicPreferred Pharmaceuticals Inc.2021-03-11Not applicableUS flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (0.2 % w/v) + Glycerin (0.2 % w/v)SolutionOphthalmicTEVA Canada Limited2011-04-19Not applicableCanada flag
Artificial TearsHypromellose (3 mg/1mL) + Dextran 70 (1 mg/1mL) + Glycerin (2 mg/1mL)Solution / dropsOphthalmicAvPAK2023-01-05Not applicableUS flag
Biomedic Artificial TearsHypromellose (0.2 g/100mL) + Glycerin (0.2 g/100mL)LiquidOphthalmicKc Pharmaceuticals, Inc.2019-04-30Not applicableUS flag
Unapproved/Other Products
NameIngredientsDosageRouteLabellerMarketing StartMarketing EndRegionImage
EntrocelHypromellose (18 mg/1mL)SolutionOralMallinckrodt2009-06-012012-10-31US flag
Gonak HypromelloseHypromellose 2906 (4000 mPa.S) (25 mg/1mL) + Hypromellose 2906 (50 mPa.S) (25 mg/1mL)SolutionOphthalmicAkorn1997-01-01Not applicableUS flag
Gonak HypromelloseHypromellose 2906 (4000 mPa.S) (25 mg/1mL) + Hypromellose 2906 (50 mPa.S) (25 mg/1mL)SolutionOphthalmicAkorn1997-01-01Not applicableUS flag
GoniosoftHypromellose (25 mg/1mL)LiquidOphthalmicOCuSOFT, INC.1989-10-022022-01-31US flag
GoniotaireHypromellose 2906 (4000 mPa.S) (25 mg/1mL)SolutionOphthalmicAltaire Pharmaceuticals Inc.2002-01-18Not applicableUS flag
Vista Gonio Eye LubricantHypromellose 2208 (100 mPa.S) (25 mg/15mL)SolutionOphthalmicRed Wedding LLC2023-07-01Not applicableUS flag


ATC Codes
S01KA02 — Hypromellose
Drug Categories
Not classified
Affected organisms
Not Available

Chemical Identifiers

CAS number


General References
  1. Li CL, Martini LG, Ford JL, Roberts M: The use of hypromellose in oral drug delivery. J Pharm Pharmacol. 2005 May;57(5):533-46. [Article]
  2. Al-Tabakha MM: HPMC capsules: current status and future prospects. J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2010;13(3):428-42. [Article]
  3. BION TEARS [Link]
  4. Hypromellose [Link]
  5. MIMS Hypromellose [Link]
  8. Hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose [Link]
  9. DailyMed: Genteal Mild Eye Drops (hypromellose 0.2%) [Link]
PubChem Substance
Download (229 KB)

Clinical Trials

Clinical Trials
4CompletedPreventionAllergic Conjunctivitis (AC)1
4CompletedPreventionChronic Allergic Conjunctivitis1
4CompletedTreatmentAllergic Conjunctivitis (AC)1
4CompletedTreatmentAnterior Uveitis (AU) / Macular Edema, Cystoid1
4CompletedTreatmentCorneal Edema / Intraocular Pressure (IOP)1
4CompletedTreatmentCorneal Epithelium Defect1
4CompletedTreatmentDry Eye Syndrome (DES)1
4CompletedTreatmentDry Eyes1
4CompletedTreatmentGlaucoma / Ocular Hypertension4
4CompletedTreatmentKeratoconjunctivitis Due to Adenovirus / Viral Shedding1


Not Available
Not Available
Dosage Forms
SolutionOphthalmic2 %
SolutionOphthalmic0.5 %
SolutionOphthalmic1 %
Solution / dropsOphthalmic5 mg/1mL
Solution / drops; suspension / dropsOphthalmic3.2 mg/mL
SolutionOphthalmic0.32 %
SolutionOphthalmic20 mg/1mL
Solution, gel forming / dropsOphthalmic20 mg/1mL
Solution / dropsOphthalmic20 mg/1mL
Solution / drops; suspension / dropsOphthalmic1.92 mg/0/6mL
SolutionIntraocular; Ophthalmic23 mg
SolutionOphthalmic0.3 %
SolutionOral18 mg/1mL
SolutionOphthalmic5.000 mg
Solution / dropsOphthalmic0.1 %w/v
SolutionOphthalmic3 mg / mL
Solution, gel forming / dropsConjunctival3 mg
GelOphthalmic0.3 %
GelOphthalmic3 mg/g
LiquidOphthalmic200 mg/1L
LiquidOphthalmic300 mg/1L
GelOphthalmic.003 g/1g
LiquidOphthalmic25 mg/1mL
SolutionOphthalmic25 mg/1mL
Solution / dropsOphthalmic25 mg/1mL
SolutionOphthalmic; Topical3 mg
LiquidOphthalmic3 mg/10mL
For solutionTopical7 mg/1mL
Solution / dropsOphthalmic
SolutionOphthalmic5 mg/1mL
Solution / dropsOphthalmic0.5 %
SolutionOphthalmic3 mg
SolutionOphthalmic5 mg
SolutionRectal1 g / 100 mL
SolutionConjunctival; Ophthalmic20 mg
Solution / dropsOphthalmic4 mg/1mL
Kit; solutionIntraocular; Irrigation
SolutionConjunctival; Ophthalmic3 mg
SolutionOphthalmic3 mg / g
SolutionConjunctival; Ophthalmic0.02 g
Solution / dropsOphthalmic; Topical3 mg/1mL
LiquidOphthalmic3.5 mg/1mL
Solution / dropsOphthalmic10 mg / mL
Solution / drops; suspension / dropsOphthalmic0.32 %
Solution / drops; suspension / dropsOphthalmic3 mg/ml
Solution / dropsOphthalmic3 mg/1ml
Solution / dropsOphthalmic0.2 g/100mL
SolutionOphthalmic; Topical
GelOphthalmic3 mg/1g
SolutionConjunctival; Ophthalmic
Tablet, delayed releaseOral
Solution / dropsOphthalmic17 mg/1mL
SolutionOphthalmic25 mg/15mL
GelOphthalmic0.3 g/1mL
Solution / dropsOphthalmic
LiquidOphthalmic3 mg/1ml
LiquidOphthalmic5 mg/1ml
Not Available
Not Available


Not Available
Experimental Properties
water solubilitySoluble https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/catalog/product/usp/1330005?lang=en®ion=CA
Predicted Properties
Not Available
Predicted ADMET Features
Not Available


Mass Spec (NIST)
Not Available
Not Available


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Pharmacological action
General Function
Protein complex binding
Specific Function
May act as a physical homophilic interaction molecule between intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) and intraepithelial lymphocytes (IELs) at the mucosal epithelium for providing immunological barrier...
Gene Name
Uniprot ID
Uniprot Name
Epithelial cell adhesion molecule
Molecular Weight
34932.005 Da
  1. Geerling G, Daniels JT, Dart JK, Cree IA, Khaw PT: Toxicity of natural tear substitutes in a fully defined culture model of human corneal epithelial cells. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2001 Apr;42(5):948-56. [Article]

Drug created at December 03, 2015 16:51 / Updated at November 29, 2023 23:14