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Chitosan And Its Derivatives For Ocular Delivery Formulations: Recent Advances And Developments

Alexandra Zamboulis, Stavroula Nanaki, Georgia Michailidou, Ioanna Koumentakou, Maria Lazaridou, Nina Maria Ainali, Eleftheria Xanthopoulou, Dimitrios N. Bikiaris

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Chitosan (CS) is a hemi-synthetic cationic linear polysaccharide produced by the deacetylation of chitin. CS is non-toxic, highly biocompatible, and biodegradable, and it has a low immunogenicity. Additionally, CS has inherent antibacterial properties and a mucoadhesive character and can disrupt epithelial tight junctions, thus acting as a permeability enhancer. As such, CS and its derivatives are well-suited for the challenging field of ocular drug delivery. In the present review article, we will discuss the properties of CS that contribute to its successful application in ocular delivery before reviewing the latest advances in the use of CS for the development of novel ophthalmic delivery systems. Colloidal nanocarriers (nanoparticles, micelles, liposomes) will be presented, followed by CS gels and lenses and ocular inserts. Finally, instances of CS coatings, aiming at conferring mucoadhesiveness to other matrixes, will be presented.