Author(s): Ma P, Mumper RJ
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Abstract Paclitaxel is one of the most effective chemotherapeutic drugs ever developed and is active against a broad range of cancers, such as lung, ovarian, and breast cancers. Due to its low water solubility, paclitaxel is formulated in a mixture of Cremophor EL and dehydrated ethanol (50:50, v/v) a combination known as Taxol. However, Taxol has some severe side effects related to Cremophor EL and ethanol. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the development of alternative Taxol formulations. The encapsulation of paclitaxel in biodegradable and non-toxic nano-delivery systems can protect the drug from degradation during circulation and in-turn protect the body from toxic side effects of the drug thereby lowering its toxicity, increasing its circulation half-life, exhibiting improved pharmacokinetic profiles, and demonstrating better patient compliance. Also, nanoparticle-based delivery systems can take advantage of the enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) effect for passive tumor targeting, therefore, they are promising carriers to improve the therapeutic index and decrease the side effects of paclitaxel. To date, paclitaxel albumin-bound nanoparticles (Abraxane®) have been approved by the FDA for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer and non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In addition, there are a number of novel paclitaxel nanoparticle formulations in clinical trials. In this comprehensive review, several types of developed paclitaxel nano-delivery systems will be covered and discussed, such as polymeric nanoparticles, lipid-based formulations, polymer conjugates, inorganic nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes, nanocrystals, and cyclodextrin nanoparticles.
This article was published in J Nanomed Nanotechnol
and referenced in Fungal Genomics & Biology