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Nanobiotechnology, involving biological systems manufactured at the molecular level, is a multidisciplinary field that has fostered the development of nanoscaled pharmaceutical delivery devices. Micelles, liposomes, solid lipid nanoparticles, polymeric nanoparticles, functionalized nanoparticles, nanocrystals, cyclodextrins, dendrimers, nanotubes and metallic nanoparticles have been used as strategies to deliver conventional pharmaceuticals or substances such as peptides, recombinant proteins, vaccines and nucleotides. Nanoparticles and other colloidal pharmaceutical delivery systems modify many physicochemical properties, thus resulting in changes in the body distribution and other pharmacological processes. These changes can lead to pharmaceutical delivery at specific sites and reduce side effects. Therefore, nanoparticles can improve the therapeutic efficiency, being excellent carriers for biological molecules, including enzymes, recombinant proteins and nucleic acid. This review discusses different pharmaceutical carrier systems, and their potential and limitations in the field of pharmaceutical technology. Products with these technologies which have been approved by the FDA in different clinical phases and which are on the market will be also discussed.
Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.