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Honolulu, Hawaii, United States, 2006/09/22 - New evidence suggests that biodegradable polymeric nanoparticles designed for pulmonary drug delivery may not induce the same inflammatory response as non-biodegradable polystyrene particles of comparable size.
Particulate nanocarriers have been praised for their advantageous drug delivery properties in the lung, such as avoidance of macrophage clearance mechanisms and long residence times. However, instilled non-biodegradable polystyrene nanospheres with small diameters and thus large surface areas have been shown to induce pulmonary inflammation. New evidence suggests that biodegradable polymeric nanoparticles designed for pulmonary drug delivery may not induce the same inflammatory response as non-biodegradable polystyrene particles of comparable size.
“Nanomedicines” are all the rage. Especially in the area of drug delivery to the lung, nano-sized drug carriers promise many advantages over conventional inhalation products. These carriers may be loaded with drugs and formulated so that they may reach specific areas of the lung. Once at their target site, they may be designed to deliver their payload over a controlled period of time, thus reducing the frequency with which a patient may have to inhale their medicine.
For example, patients prescribed inhalable forms of prostacyclins to treat pulmonary hypertension may have to inhale their medicine up to 12 times daily (during the day), because of the short half-life of the drug. Overnight they are forced resort to other measures, such as infusion pumps, to provide the necessary dilation of their lung arteries. With a suitable controlled release preparation, the patient may ideally only have to inhale mornings and evenings to receive their therapeutic dose.
Several strategies may be used to control the release rate of the drug, but by far the most popular method in the scientific literature is to package the drug in a nanoparticle composed of biodegradable polymers. The release rate is then controlled by the polymer properties and the lung environment.
Read the full article on the Nanowerk website.
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