Sodium dependent multivitamin transporter (SMVT; product of the SLC5A6 gene) is an important transmembrane protein responsible for translocation of vitamins and other essential cofactors such as biotin, pantothenic acid and lipoic acid. Hydropathy plot (Kyte-Dolittle algorithm) revealed
that human SMVT protein consists of 635 amino acids and 12 transmembrane domains with both amino and carboxyl termini oriented towards the cytoplasm. SMVT is expressed in various tissues such as placenta, intestine, brain, liver, lung, kidney, cornea, retina and heart. This transporter displays
broad substrate specificity and excellent capacity for utilization in drug delivery. Drug absorption is often limited by the presence of physiological (epithelial tight junctions), biochemical (efflux transporters and enzymatic degradation) and chemical (size, lipophilicity, molecular weight,
charge etc.) barriers. These barriers may cause many potential therapeutics to be dropped from the preliminary screening portfolio and subsequent entry into the market. Transporter targeted delivery has become a powerful approach to deliver drugs to target tissues because of the ability of
the transporter to translocate the drug to intracellular organelles at a higher rate. This review highlights studies employing SMVT transporter as a target for drug delivery to improve bioavailability and investigate the feasibility of developing SMVT targeted drug delivery systems.
University of Missouri Curators’, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Vice-Provost for Interdisciplinary Research, University of Missouri - Kansas City, School of Pharmacy, 2464 Charlotte Street, Kansas City, MO 64108, USA.
Publication date: June 1, 2012
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Current Drug Targets aims to cover the latest and most outstanding developments on the medicinal chemistry and pharmacology of molecular drug targets e.g. disease specific proteins, receptors, enzymes, genes. Each issue of the journal will be devoted to a single timely topic, with series of in-depth reviews, written by leaders in the field, covering a range of current topics on drug targets. These issues will be organized and led by a guest editor who is a recognized expert in the overall topic. As the discovery, identification, characterisation and validation of novel human drug targets for drug discovery continues to grow; this journal will be essential reading for all pharmaceutical scientists involved in drug discovery and development.