Keywords: nanoparticles, nanomedicine, therapeutics, vaccination, chemotherapy, photodynamic therapy, diagnostics, theragnostics, multifunctional nanocarriers, nanopharmaceuticals, nanocarrier systems, drug delivery, nanotechnology, target specificity, therapeutic activity, toxicity
Nanopharmaceuticals II: application of nanoparticles and nanocarrier systems in pharmaceutics and nanomedicine
The principle aim of using nanoparticles in pharmaceutical delivery systems is to enable targeted and efficient delivery of the appropriate levels of therapeutic or diagnostic agents to the target sites with reduced, if any, side effects to the patient. Given the benefits that nanotechnology offers, much effort has focused on producing nanoparticles for the delivery of drugs (particularly anti-tumour drugs), photosensitisers, diagnostic agents and vaccines. These nanosystems can be modified to achieve desirable biological properties (e.g., long circulation in blood, targeting delivery, stimuli sensitivity and intracellular target) and perform various therapeutically or diagnostically important functions simultaneously. This paper reviews the application of nanoparticulate systems in vaccination, chemotherapy, photodynamic therapy, diagnostics, and drug/gene delivery. Multifunctional nanocarriers are also described. Additionally, nanopharmaceutical product development and related issues are briefly presented.