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      Cancer nanomedicine: a review of recent success in drug delivery


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          Cancer continues to be one of the most difficult global healthcare problems. Although there is a large library of drugs that can be used in cancer treatment, the problem is selectively killing all the cancer cells while reducing collateral toxicity to healthy cells. There are several biological barriers to effective drug delivery in cancer such as renal, hepatic, or immune clearance. Nanoparticles loaded with drugs can be designed to overcome these biological barriers to improve efficacy while reducing morbidity. Nanomedicine has ushered in a new era for drug delivery by improving the therapeutic indices of the active pharmaceutical ingredients engineered within nanoparticles. First generation nanomedicines have received widespread clinical approval over the past two decades, from Doxil ® (liposomal doxorubicin) in 1995 to Onivyde ® (liposomal irinotecan) in 2015. This review highlights the biological barriers to effective drug delivery in cancer, emphasizing the need for nanoparticles for improving therapeutic outcomes. A summary of different nanoparticles used for drug delivery applications in cancer are presented. The review summarizes recent successes in cancer nanomedicine in the clinic. The clinical trials of Onivyde leading to its approval in 2015 by the Food and Drug Adminstration are highlighted as a case study in the recent clinical success of nanomedicine against cancer. Next generation nanomedicines need to be better targeted to specifically destroy cancerous tissue, but face several obstacles in their clinical development, including identification of appropriate biomarkers to target, scale-up of synthesis, and reproducible characterization. These hurdles need to be overcome through multidisciplinary collaborations across academia, pharmaceutical industry, and regulatory agencies in order to achieve the goal of eradicating cancer. This review discusses the current use of clinically approved nanomedicines, the investigation of nanomedicines in clinical trials, and the challenges that may hinder development of the nanomedicines for cancer treatment.

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          Nanomedicine in cancer therapy: challenges, opportunities, and clinical applications.

          Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide. Currently available therapies are inadequate and spur demand for improved technologies. Rapid growth in nanotechnology towards the development of nanomedicine products holds great promise to improve therapeutic strategies against cancer. Nanomedicine products represent an opportunity to achieve sophisticated targeting strategies and multi-functionality. They can improve the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic profiles of conventional therapeutics and may thus optimize the efficacy of existing anti-cancer compounds. In this review, we discuss state-of-the-art nanoparticles and targeted systems that have been investigated in clinical studies. We emphasize the challenges faced in using nanomedicine products and translating them from a preclinical level to the clinical setting. Additionally, we cover aspects of nanocarrier engineering that may open up new opportunities for nanomedicine products in the clinic.
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            Engineered nanoparticles for drug delivery in cancer therapy.

            In medicine, nanotechnology has sparked a rapidly growing interest as it promises to solve a number of issues associated with conventional therapeutic agents, including their poor water solubility (at least, for most anticancer drugs), lack of targeting capability, nonspecific distribution, systemic toxicity, and low therapeutic index. Over the past several decades, remarkable progress has been made in the development and application of engineered nanoparticles to treat cancer more effectively. For example, therapeutic agents have been integrated with nanoparticles engineered with optimal sizes, shapes, and surface properties to increase their solubility, prolong their circulation half-life, improve their biodistribution, and reduce their immunogenicity. Nanoparticles and their payloads have also been favorably delivered into tumors by taking advantage of the pathophysiological conditions, such as the enhanced permeability and retention effect, and the spatial variations in the pH value. Additionally, targeting ligands (e.g., small organic molecules, peptides, antibodies, and nucleic acids) have been added to the surface of nanoparticles to specifically target cancerous cells through selective binding to the receptors overexpressed on their surface. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that multiple types of therapeutic drugs and/or diagnostic agents (e.g., contrast agents) could be delivered through the same carrier to enable combination therapy with a potential to overcome multidrug resistance, and real-time readout on the treatment efficacy. It is anticipated that precisely engineered nanoparticles will emerge as the next-generation platform for cancer therapy and many other biomedical applications.
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              Normalization of tumour blood vessels improves the delivery of nanomedicines in a size-dependent manner

              The blood vessels of cancerous tumours are leaky 1–3 and poorly organized 4–7 . This can increase the interstitial fluid pressure (IFP) inside tumours and reduce blood supply to them, which impairs drug delivery 8–9 . Anti-angiogenic therapies – which “normalize” the abnormal blood vessels in tumours by making them less leaky – have been shown to improve the delivery and effectiveness of chemotherapeutics with low molecular-weights 10 , but it remains unclear whether normalizing tumour vessels can improve the delivery of nanomedicines. Here we show that repairing the abnormal vessels in mammary tumours, by blocking vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) receptor-2, improves the delivery of small nanoparticles (12nm diameter) while hindering the delivery of large nanoparticles (125nm diameter). We utilize a mathematical model to show that reducing vessel wall pore sizes through normalization decreases IFP in tumours, allowing small nanoparticles to enter them more rapidly. However, increased steric and hydrodynamic hindrances, also associated with smaller pores, make it more difficult for large nanoparticles to enter tumours. Our results further suggest that smaller (~12nm) nanomedicines are ideal for cancer therapy, owing to superior tumour penetration.

                Author and article information

                Clin Transl Med
                Clin Transl Med
                Clinical and Translational Medicine
                Springer Berlin Heidelberg (Berlin/Heidelberg )
                11 December 2017
                11 December 2017
                : 6
                : 44
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0000 9620 1122, GRID grid.225262.3, Department of Biological Sciences, , University of Massachusetts, ; Lowell, MA 01854 USA
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0000 9620 1122, GRID grid.225262.3, Department of Chemical Engineering, , University of Massachusetts, ; 1 University ave, Lowell, MA 01854 USA
                Author information
                © The Author(s) 2017

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

                : 28 August 2017
                : 22 November 2017
                Funded by: FundRef http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/100000054, National Cancer Institute;
                Award ID: R00CA153948
                Award ID: K99CA153948
                Award Recipient :
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2017

                nanoparticles,oncology,clinical trials,therapeutics,combination treatment,theranostics,mm-398
                nanoparticles, oncology, clinical trials, therapeutics, combination treatment, theranostics, mm-398


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