Author(s): Ward PD, Tippin TK, Thakker DR
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Abstract The intestinal epithelium is a major barrier to the absorption of hydrophilic drugs. The presence of intercellular junctional complexes, particularly the tight junctions (zona occludens), renders the epithelium impervious to hydrophilic drugs, which cannot diffuse across the cells through the lipid bilayer of the cell membranes. There have been significant advances in understanding the structure and cellular regulation of tight junctions over the past decade. This article reviews current knowledge regarding the physiological regulation of tight junctions and paracellular permeability, and recent progress towards the rational design of agents that can effectively and safely increase paracellular permeability via modulation of tight junctions.
This article was published in Pharm Sci Technolo Today
and referenced in Journal of Nanomedicine & Nanotechnology