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Pharmaceutics 2013, 5(4), 542-569; doi:10.3390/pharmaceutics5040542
Review

Surface Engineering of Liposomes for Stealth Behavior

 and *
Received: 2 September 2013; in revised form: 10 October 2013 / Accepted: 14 October 2013 / Published: 25 October 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Liposome Technologies)
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Abstract: Liposomes are used as a delivery vehicle for drug molecules and imaging agents. The major impetus in their biomedical applications comes from the ability to prolong their circulation half-life after administration. Conventional liposomes are easily recognized by the mononuclear phagocyte system and are rapidly cleared from the blood stream. Modification of the liposomal surface with hydrophilic polymers delays the elimination process by endowing them with stealth properties. In recent times, the development of various materials for surface engineering of liposomes and other nanomaterials has made remarkable progress. Poly(ethylene glycol)-linked phospholipids (PEG-PLs) are the best representatives of such materials. Although PEG-PLs have served the formulation scientists amazingly well, closer scrutiny has uncovered a few shortcomings, especially pertaining to immunogenicity and pharmaceutical characteristics (drug loading, targeting, etc.) of PEG. On the other hand, researchers have also begun questioning the biological behavior of the phospholipid portion in PEG-PLs. Consequently, stealth lipopolymers consisting of non-phospholipids and PEG-alternatives are being developed. These novel lipopolymers offer the potential advantages of structural versatility, reduced complement activation, greater stability, flexible handling and storage procedures and low cost. In this article, we review the materials available as alternatives to PEG and PEG-lipopolymers for effective surface modification of liposomes.
Keywords: stealth liposomes; complement proteins; poly(ethylene glycol); lipopolymer stealth liposomes; complement proteins; poly(ethylene glycol); lipopolymer
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Nag, O.K.; Awasthi, V. Surface Engineering of Liposomes for Stealth Behavior. Pharmaceutics 2013, 5, 542-569.

AMA Style

Nag OK, Awasthi V. Surface Engineering of Liposomes for Stealth Behavior. Pharmaceutics. 2013; 5(4):542-569.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Nag, Okhil K.; Awasthi, Vibhudutta. 2013. "Surface Engineering of Liposomes for Stealth Behavior." Pharmaceutics 5, no. 4: 542-569.



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