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J. Funct. Biomater. 2012, 3(3), 615-641; doi:10.3390/jfb3030615
Review

Biocompatibility of Chitosan Carriers with Application in Drug Delivery

1,†
, 1,†
, 2
 and 1,*
1 Centre for Molecular and Structural Biomedicine (CBME), Institute for Biotechnology and Bioengineering (IBB), Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, Faro 8005-139, Portugal 2 Department of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Santiago de Compostela, Campus Vida, Santiago de Compostela 15782, Spain These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 June 2012 / Revised: 3 August 2012 / Accepted: 21 August 2012 / Published: 17 September 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocompatibility of Biomaterials)
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Abstract

Chitosan is one of the most used polysaccharides in the design of drug delivery strategies for administration of either biomacromolecules or low molecular weight drugs. For these purposes, it is frequently used as matrix forming material in both nano and micron-sized particles. In addition to its interesting physicochemical and biopharmaceutical properties, which include high mucoadhesion and a great capacity to produce drug delivery systems, ensuring the biocompatibility of the drug delivery vehicles is a highly relevant issue. Nevertheless, this subject is not addressed as frequently as desired and even though the application of chitosan carriers has been widely explored, the demonstration of systems biocompatibility is still in its infancy. In this review, addressing the biocompatibility of chitosan carriers with application in drug delivery is discussed and the methods used in vitro and in vivo, exploring the effect of different variables, are described. We further provide a discussion on the pros and cons of used methodologies, as well as on the difficulties arising from the absence of standardization of procedures.
Keywords: biocompatibility; chitosan; cytotoxicity; genotoxicity; microparticles; nanoparticles biocompatibility; chitosan; cytotoxicity; genotoxicity; microparticles; nanoparticles
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

Rodrigues, S.; Dionísio, M.; López, C.R.; Grenha, A. Biocompatibility of Chitosan Carriers with Application in Drug Delivery. J. Funct. Biomater. 2012, 3, 615-641.

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