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      Microbubbles in ultrasound-triggered drug and gene delivery.

      Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews

      Animals, Drug Delivery Systems, methods, Gene Transfer Techniques, Humans, Microbubbles, Pharmaceutical Preparations, administration & dosage, Ultrasonics

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          Abstract

          Ultrasound contrast agents, in the form of gas-filled microbubbles, are becoming popular in perfusion monitoring; they are employed as molecular imaging agents. Microbubbles are manufactured from biocompatible materials, they can be injected intravenously, and some are approved for clinical use. Microbubbles can be destroyed by ultrasound irradiation. This destruction phenomenon can be applied to targeted drug delivery and enhancement of drug action. The ultrasonic field can be focused at the target tissues and organs; thus, selectivity of the treatment can be improved, reducing undesirable side effects. Microbubbles enhance ultrasound energy deposition in the tissues and serve as cavitation nuclei, increasing intracellular drug delivery. DNA delivery and successful tissue transfection are observed in the areas of the body where ultrasound is applied after intravascular administration of microbubbles and plasmid DNA. Accelerated blood clot dissolution in the areas of insonation by cooperative action of thrombolytic agents and microbubbles is demonstrated in several clinical trials.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          18486268
          2720159
          10.1016/j.addr.2008.03.005

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