One of the most promising strategies to improve the bioavailability of active pharmaceutical ingredients is based on the association of the drug with colloidal carriers, for example, polymeric nanoparticles, which are stable in biological environment, protective for encapsulated substances and able to modulate physicochemical characteristics, drug release and biological behaviour. The synthetic polymers possess unique properties due to their chemical structure. Some of them are characterized with mucoadhesiveness; another can facilitate the penetration through mucous layers; or to be stimuli responsive, providing controlled drug release at the target organ, tissues or cells; and all of them are biocompatible and versatile. These are suitable vehicles of nucleic acids, oligonucleotides, DNA, peptides and proteins. This chapter aims to look at the ‘hot spots’ in the design of synthetic polymer nanoparticles as an intelligent drug delivery system in terms of biopharmaceutical challenges and in relation to the route of their administration: the non-invasive—oral, transdermal, transmucosal (nasal, buccal/sublingual, vaginal, rectal and ocular) and inhalation routes—and the invasive parenteral route.
Part of the book: Acrylic Polymers in Healthcare
Nanoparticles can surmount some essential problems of conventional small molecules or biomacromolecules (e.g., DNA, RNA, and protein) used in some diseases by allowing targeted delivery and overcome through biological barriers. Recently, silver nanoparticles have been harnessed as delivery vehicles for therapeutic agents, including antisense oligonucleotides, and other small molecules. Silver is the most profit-oriented precious metal used in the preparation of nanoparticles and nanomaterials because of its antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, antioxidant and unusually enhanced physicochemical properties compared to the bulk material such as optical, thermal, electrical, and catalytic properties. Small silver nanoparticles offer many advantages as drug carriers, including adjustable size and shape, enhanced stability of surface-bound nucleic acids, high-density surface ligand attachment, transmembrane delivery without harsh transfection agents, protection of the attached therapeutics from degradation, and potential for improved timed/controlled intracellular drug-delivery. Plant-mediated synthesis of silver nanoparticles is gaining interest due to its inexpensiveness, providing a healthier work environment, and protecting human health leading to lessening waste and safer products. The chapter presents the essential physicochemical characteristics, antibacterial, and anticancer properties which silver nanoparticles obtained by plant-mediated methods possess, and their application as drug-delivery systems with a critical view on the possible toxicity on the human body.
Part of the book: Nanomedicines