Nano-particles can be used as vehicles capable of transporting and delivering one or more active therapeutic agents and imaging contrast enhancers. The advantage of using such nano-carriers for biomedical applications is their ability to overcome various biological barriers and to localize into the target tissue when systemically administered. Currently used and investigated nanovectors can be generally classified into three main groups:
Nano-Delivery Vehicle & Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API)
Nano-carriers localize in the tumor by Enhanced Permeation and Retention (EPR), or the enhanced permeability of the tumor neovasculature. The particle size is the targeting mechanism in this group. These systems generally have a “stealth” layer (e.g. polyethylene glycol, PEG) preventing their uptake by phagocytic blood cells to prolong their circulation time.
Targeted Drug Delivery
Nano-carriers target their therapeutic action via antibodies and other biomolecules, or responsiveness to the environment. The best examples in this group are antibody-targeted liposomes and nano-particles. Responsiveness to the environment can be achieved, for example, by using pH-sensitive polymers or disease site-specific enzymes. The FDA has not yet approved candidates from this group, but numerous clinical trials are ongoing involving targeted nanovectors especially for cancer treatment.
Nano-carriers are capable of more complex functions. For example, they can be used in time-controlled deployment of multiple waves of active nano-particles, deployed across different biological barriers and with different sub-cellular targets. The integration of various functions requires carrying and delivering a sufficiently large amount of various agents for therapy, imaging, which can only be allocated in a sufficiently large particle.
NanoGlys™ can be used in all three groups and has significant advantages in comparison to currently used technologies