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Open AccessReview

Recent Developments in Microfluidic Technologies for Central Nervous System Targeted Studies

1
UCIBIO-REQUIMTE, MedTech - Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Technology, Department of Drug Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Porto, Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira, 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal
2
School of Pharmacy, Queen’s University Belfast, 97 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7BL, UK
3
FP-ENAS/CEBIMED, Fernando Pessoa Energy, Environment and Health Research Unit/Biomedical Research Centre, Faculty of Health Sciences, Fernando Pessoa University, Rua Carlos da Maia, 296, 4200-150 Porto, Portugal
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(6), 542; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12060542
Received: 26 May 2020 / Accepted: 9 June 2020 / Published: 11 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microfluidics as a Tool for Drug Delivery)
Neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) bear a lot of weight in public health. By studying the properties of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and its fundamental interactions with the central nervous system (CNS), it is possible to improve the understanding of the pathological mechanisms behind these disorders and create new and better strategies to improve bioavailability and therapeutic efficiency, such as nanocarriers. Microfluidics is an intersectional field with many applications. Microfluidic systems can be an invaluable tool to accurately simulate the BBB microenvironment, as well as develop, in a reproducible manner, drug delivery systems with well-defined physicochemical characteristics. This review provides an overview of the most recent advances on microfluidic devices for CNS-targeted studies. Firstly, the importance of the BBB will be addressed, and different experimental BBB models will be briefly discussed. Subsequently, microfluidic-integrated BBB models (BBB/brain-on-a-chip) are introduced and the state of the art reviewed, with special emphasis on their use to study NDs. Additionally, the microfluidic preparation of nanocarriers and other compounds for CNS delivery has been covered. The last section focuses on current challenges and future perspectives of microfluidic experimentation. View Full-Text
Keywords: Neurodegenerative diseases (NDs); blood-brain barrier (BBB); central nervous system (CNS); microfluidics; organ-on-a-chip; brain-on-a-chip; brain delivery; drug delivery; nanoparticles (NPs); nanocarriers Neurodegenerative diseases (NDs); blood-brain barrier (BBB); central nervous system (CNS); microfluidics; organ-on-a-chip; brain-on-a-chip; brain delivery; drug delivery; nanoparticles (NPs); nanocarriers
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MDPI and ACS Style

Teixeira, M.I.; Amaral, M.H.; Costa, P.C.; Lopes, C.M.; Lamprou, D.A. Recent Developments in Microfluidic Technologies for Central Nervous System Targeted Studies. Pharmaceutics 2020, 12, 542.

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