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Smart Nanoparticles For Drug Delivery Application: Development Of Versatile Nanocarrier Platforms In Biotechnology And Nanomedicine

Domenico Lombardo, Mikhail A. Kiselev, Maria Teresa Caccamo

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The study of nanostructured drug delivery systems allows the development of novel platforms for the efficient transport and controlled release of drug molecules in the harsh microenvironment of diseased tissues of living systems, thus offering a wide range of functional nanoplatforms for smart application in biotechnology and nanomedicine. This article highlights recent advances of smart nanocarriers composed of organic (including polymeric micelles and vesicles, liposomes, dendrimers, and hydrogels) and inorganic (including quantum dots, gold and mesoporous silica nanoparticles) materials. Despite the remarkable developments of recent synthetic methodologies, most of all nanocarriers’ action is associated with a number of unwanted side effects that diminish their efficient use in biotechnology and nanomedicine applications. This highlights some critical issues in the design and engineering of nanocarrier systems for biotechnology applications, arising from the complex environment and multiform interactions established within the specific biological media.