Designer Nanoparticles: Incorporating Size, Shape, and Triggered Release into Nanoscale Drug Carriers


M. C. Moore, Guimard, N., Shi, L., and Roy, K., “Designer Nanoparticles: Incorporating Size, Shape, and Triggered Release into Nanoscale Drug Carriers,” Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 479–495, 2010.


Importance of the field: Although significant progress has been made in delivering therapeutic agents through micro and nanocarriers, precise control over in vivo biodistribution and disease-responsive drug release has been difficult to achieve. This is critical for the success of next generation drug delivery devices, as newer drugs, designed to interfere with cellular functions, must be efficiently and specifically delivered to diseased cells. The chief constraint in achieving this has been our limited repertoire of particle synthesis methods, especially at the nanoscale. Recent developments in generating shape-specific nanocarriers and the potential to combine stimuli-responsive release with nanoscale delivery devices show great promise in overcoming these limitations. Areas covered in this review: How recent advances in fabrication technology allow synthesis of highly monodisperse, stimuli-responsive, drug-carrying nanoparticles of precise geometries is discussed. How particle properties, specifically shape and stimuli responsiveness, affect biodistribution, cellular uptake and drug release is also reviewed. What the reader will gain: The reader is introduced to recent developments in intelligent drug nanocarriers and new nanofabrication approaches that can be combined with disease-responsive biomaterials. This will provide insight into the importance of controlling particle geometry and incorporating stimuli-responsive materials into drug delivery. Take home message: The integration of responsive biomaterials into shape-specific nanocarriers is one of the most promising avenues towards the development of next generation, advanced drug delivery systems. Read More: