Nanoparticle (NP)-mediated drug delivery (NMDD) for active targeting of diseases is a primary goal of nanomedicine. NPs have much to offer in overcoming the limitations of traditional drug delivery approaches, including off-target drug toxicity and the need for the administration of repetitive doses. In the last decade, one of the main foci in NMDD has been the realization of NP-mediated drug formulations for active targeted delivery to diseased tissues, with an emphasis on cellular and subcellular targeting. Advances on this front have included the intricate design of targeted NP-drug constructs to navigate through biological barriers, overcome multidrug resistance (MDR), decrease side effects, and improve overall drug efficacy. In this review, we survey advancements in NP-mediated drug targeting over the last five years, highlighting how various NP-drug constructs have been designed to achieve active targeted delivery and improved therapeutic outcomes for critical diseases including cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and Alzheimer’s disease. We conclude with a survey of the current clinical trial landscape for active targeted NP-drug delivery and how we envision this field will progress in the near future.
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