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Biomolecules Linked to Transition Metal Complexes - New Chances for Chemotherapy

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From the synthetic point of view the fast developing fields of medicine and biology offer new opportunities for the design of very effective drugs with high selectivity. Especially in the field of anticancer therapy many efforts have been made to deliver drugs to specific tissues. Sugar substituted porphyrin compounds, bile acid conjugates, and pH-sensitive immunoliposomes are only some examples. Although there are many different approaches to exploit biomolecules as shuttles only a start has been made. Since the targeting of a drug is a very complex process, a successful design of a new compound has to consider chemical as well as biological aspects and requires a multidisciplinary cooperation with physicians and biologists. Three interesting concepts are evaluated exemplarily: antibodies, molecules with binding affinity to hormone receptors, and bile acids. The main issues are: selection of the drug and the carrier, ways of linking the pharmacological active compound to the biomolecule, the optimal way of linking the drug to the spacer, and cytotoxicity, apoptosis, and drug resistance.

Keywords: anticancer; chemotherapy; drug targeting; metal complexes

Document Type: Review Article


Affiliations: BioCenter, Martin-Luther- University Halle-Wittenberg, 06099 Halle, Germany.

Publication date: 2003-10-01

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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