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Pharmaceutics, Volume 16, Issue 6 (June 2024) – 139 articles

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21 pages, 949 KiB  
Article
Targeting Intracranial Tumours with a Combination of RNA and Chemotherapy
by Abdulhamid S. Fatani, Andreas G. Schätzlein and Ijeoma F. Uchegbu
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 829; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060829 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Abstract
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a fast-growing and aggressive brain tumour, which remains largely resistant to treatment; the prognosis for patients is poor, with a median survival time of about 12–18 months, post diagnosis. In an effort to bring more efficacious treatments to patients, [...] Read more.
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a fast-growing and aggressive brain tumour, which remains largely resistant to treatment; the prognosis for patients is poor, with a median survival time of about 12–18 months, post diagnosis. In an effort to bring more efficacious treatments to patients, we targeted the down regulation of ITCH, an E3 ligase that is overexpressed in a variety of cancers, and which inhibits P73, a tumour suppressor gene. 6-O-glycolchitosan (GC) was used to deliver siRNA ITCH (GC60-siRNA-ITCH) and gemcitabine via the nose to brain route in CD-1 nude mice which had previously been implanted intracranially with U87-MG-luc2 cells. Prior to this in vivo study, an in vitro study established the synergistic effect of siRNA-ITCH in combination with a chemotherapy drug—gemcitabine. A downregulation of ITCH, an upregulation of p73 and enhanced apoptosis were observed in vitro in U87-MG cells, using qPCR, Western blot analysis, confocal laser scanning microscopy, flow cytometry and cytotoxicity assays. When GC60-siRNA-ITCH was combined with gemcitabine, there was a resultant decrease in cell proliferation in vitro. In CD1 mice, the administration of siRNA-ITCH (7 doses of 0.081 mg/kg) alone did not significantly affect animal survival (increasing mean survival from 29 to 33 days when compared to untreated animals), whereas intranasal gemcitabine had a significant effect on survival (increasing survival from 29 to 45 days when compared to untreated animals, p < 0.01). The most significant effect was seen with combination therapy (GC60-siRNA-ITCH plus gemcitabine), where survival increased by 89%, increasing from 29 to 54 days (p < 0.01). Our data demonstrate that siRNA chemosensitises brain tumours to gemcitabine and that the nose-to-brain delivery route may be a viable route for the treatment of intracranial tumours. Full article
16 pages, 6554 KiB  
Article
Immunomodulatory and Anticancer Effects of Fridericia chica Extract-Loaded Nanocapsules in Myeloid Leukemia
by Alice de Freitas Gomes, Adriane Dâmares de Souza Jorge Batalha, Carlos Eduardo de Castro Alves, Renata Galvão de Azevedo, Jesus Rafael Rodriguez Amado, Tatiane Pereira de Souza, Hector Henrique Ferreira Koolen, Felipe Moura Araújo da Silva, Francisco Celio Maia Chaves, Serafim Florentino Neto, Antônio Luiz Boechat and Gemilson Soares Pontes
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 828; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060828 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Abstract
Nanocapsules provide selective delivery and increase the bioavailability of bioactive compounds. In this study, we examined the anticancer and immunomodulatory potential of Fridericia chica (crajiru) extract encapsulated in nanocapsules targeting myeloid leukemias. Nanocapsules containing crajiru (nanocapsules-CRJ) were prepared via interfacial polymer deposition and [...] Read more.
Nanocapsules provide selective delivery and increase the bioavailability of bioactive compounds. In this study, we examined the anticancer and immunomodulatory potential of Fridericia chica (crajiru) extract encapsulated in nanocapsules targeting myeloid leukemias. Nanocapsules containing crajiru (nanocapsules-CRJ) were prepared via interfacial polymer deposition and solvent displacement. Size and polydispersity were measured by dynamic light scattering. Biological assays were performed on leukemia cell lines HL60 and K562 and on non-cancerous Vero cells and human PBMC. The anticancer activity was evaluated using cytotoxicity and clonogenic assays, while the immunomodulatory activity was evaluated by measuring the levels of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines in PBMC supernatants treated with concentrations of nanocapsules-CRJ. Nanocapsules-CRJ exhibited significant cytotoxic activity against HL60 and K562 cells at concentrations ranging from 0.75 to 50 μg/mL, with the greatest reductions in cell viability observed at 50 μg/mL (p < 0.001 for HL60; p < 0.01 for K562), while not affecting non-cancerous Vero cells and human PBMCs. At concentrations of 25 μg/mL and 50 μg/mL, nanocapsules-CRJ reduced the formation of HL60 and K562 colonies by more than 90% (p < 0.0001). Additionally, at a concentration of 12 μg/mL, nanocapsules-CRJ induced the production of the cytokines IL-6 (p = 0.0002), IL-10 (p = 0.0005), IL-12 (p = 0.001), and TNF-α (p = 0.005), indicating their immunomodulatory potential. These findings suggest that nanocapsules-CRJ hold promise as a potential therapeutic agent with both cytotoxic and immunomodulatory properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drug Repurposing and Delivery Systems for Immunotherapy)
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23 pages, 1713 KiB  
Article
Multistage Nanocarrier Based on an Oil Core–Graphene Oxide Shell
by Immacolata Tufano, Raffaele Vecchione, Valeria Panzetta, Edmondo Battista, Costantino Casale, Giorgia Imparato and Paolo Antonio Netti
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 827; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060827 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 40
Abstract
Potent synthetic drugs, as well as biomolecules extracted from plants, have been investigated for their selectivity toward cancer cells. The main limitation in cancer treatment is the ability to bring such molecules within each single cancer cell, which requires accumulation in the peritumoral [...] Read more.
Potent synthetic drugs, as well as biomolecules extracted from plants, have been investigated for their selectivity toward cancer cells. The main limitation in cancer treatment is the ability to bring such molecules within each single cancer cell, which requires accumulation in the peritumoral region followed by homogeneous spreading within the entire tissue. In the last decades, nanotechnology has emerged as a powerful tool due to its ability to protect the drug during blood circulation and allow enhanced accumulation around the leaky regions of the tumor vasculature. However, the ideal size for accumulation of around 100 nm is too large for effective penetration into the dense collagen matrix. Therefore, we propose a multistage system based on graphene oxide nanosheet-based quantum dots (GOQDs) with dimensions that are 12 nm, functionalized with hyaluronic acid (GOQDs-HA), and deposited using the layer-by-layer technique onto an oil-in-water nanoemulsion (O/W NE) template that is around 100 nm in size, previously stabilized by a biodegradable polymer, chitosan. The choice of a biodegradable core for the nanocarrier is to degrade once inside the tumor, thus promoting the release of smaller compounds, GOQDs-HA, carrying the adsorbed anticancer compound, which in this work is represented by curcumin as a model bioactive anticancer molecule. Additionally, modification with HA aims to promote active targeting of stromal and cancer cells. Cell uptake experiments and preliminary penetration experiments in three-dimensional microtissues were performed to assess the proposed multistage nanocarrier. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Nanocarriers for Drug Delivery in Cancer Therapy)
13 pages, 1320 KiB  
Article
Unveiling Anticancer Potential of COX-2 and 5-LOX Inhibitors: Cytotoxicity, Radiosensitization Potential and Antimigratory Activity against Colorectal and Pancreatic Carcinoma
by Jelena Bošković, Vladimir Dobričić, Otilija Keta, Lela Korićanac, Jelena Žakula, Jelena Dinić, Sofija Jovanović Stojanov, Aleksandar Pavić and Olivera Čudina
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 826; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060826 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 70
Abstract
Apart from cytotoxicity, inhibitors of the COX-2 enzyme have demonstrated additional effects important for cancer treatment (such as radiosensitization of tumor cells and cell antimigratory effects); however, the relationship between the inhibition of other inflammation-related enzyme 5-LOX inhibitors and anticancer activity is still [...] Read more.
Apart from cytotoxicity, inhibitors of the COX-2 enzyme have demonstrated additional effects important for cancer treatment (such as radiosensitization of tumor cells and cell antimigratory effects); however, the relationship between the inhibition of other inflammation-related enzyme 5-LOX inhibitors and anticancer activity is still not well understood. In our study, the cytotoxicity of thirteen COX-2 and 5-LOX inhibitors previously presented by our group (113) was tested on three cancer cell lines (HCT 116, HT-29 and BxPC-3) and one healthy cell line (MRC-5). Compounds 3, 5, 6 and 7 showed moderate cytotoxicity, but good selectivity towards cancer cell lines. IC50 values were in the range of 22.99–51.66 µM (HCT 116 cell line), 8.63–41.20 µM (BxPC-3 cell line) and 24.78–81.60 µM (HT-29 cell line; compound 7 > 100 µM). In comparison to tested, commercially available COX-2 and 5-LOX inhibitors, both cytotoxicity and selectivity were increased. The addition of compounds 6 and 7 to irradiation treatment showed the most significant decrease in cell proliferation of the HT-29 cell line (p < 0.001). The antimigratory potential of the best dual COX-2 and 5-LOX inhibitors (compounds 1, 2, 3 and 5) was tested by a wound-healing assay using the SW620 cell line. Compounds 1 and 3 were singled out as compounds with the most potent effect (relative wound closure was 3.20% (24 h), 5,08% (48 h) for compound 1 and 3.86% (24 h), 7.68% (48 h) for compound 3). Considering all these results, compound 3 stood out as the compound with the most optimal biological activity, with the best dual COX-2 and 5-LOX inhibitory activity, good selectivity towards tested cancer cell lines, significant cell antimigratory potential and a lack of toxic effects at therapeutic doses. Full article
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20 pages, 889 KiB  
Review
The Effect of Photodynamic Therapy on Enterococcus spp. and Its Application in Dentistry: A Scoping Review
by Mariaignacia Rubilar-Huenchuman, Camilo Ortega-Villanueva, Iván A. González and Christian Erick Palavecino
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 825; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060825 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 91
Abstract
Enterococci spp. are Gram-positive bacteria that cause mild to severe infections, many associated with the oral cavity, such as periapical infections and healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). Many of these infections become serious diseases that are difficult to resolve, specifically when multidrug-resistant (MDR) strains cause [...] Read more.
Enterococci spp. are Gram-positive bacteria that cause mild to severe infections, many associated with the oral cavity, such as periapical infections and healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). Many of these infections become serious diseases that are difficult to resolve, specifically when multidrug-resistant (MDR) strains cause them. In recent years, the number of MDR strains of Enterococcus spp. has increased significantly. This increased prevalence of MDR strains produces significant pressure to generate more antimicrobial therapies, but there is a decline in the production of new antibiotics, driving the development of complementary therapies, such as photodynamic therapy (PDT). PDT combines a photosensitizer agent (PS), light, and oxygen to cause photooxidative stress in bacterial cells. PDT can eradicate Enterococcus spp. contaminations, improve the classic cleaning processes, and eradicate the bacteria in dental pieces. PDT’s effectiveness can be improved with nanoparticles that function as carriers. Our work aims to describe the advances in PDT against Enterococcus spp. as a complement to antibiotic therapy, focusing on infections by Enterococcus faecium and Enterococcus faecalis, dental hygiene, and using nanoparticles to improve the antimicrobial effect. A systematic bibliographic search without a meta-analysis was conducted on various databases, using inclusion and exclusion criteria to identify the most relevant research. Of the 193 non-redundant articles found, 65 were selected for a systematic review, from which a summary table was created and a manual description was made. Photodynamic therapy for treating E. faecium and E. faecalis is a widely studied area, with promising results concerning bactericidal effectiveness and reductions in biofilm formation, particularly in regard to dental hygiene. Because most of the studies were conducted in vitro or ex vivo, the results indicated that there were not sufficient data to initiate clinical trials for safety and efficacy studies on humans. Full article
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15 pages, 2485 KiB  
Article
Dual-Omics Approach Unveils Novel Perspective on the Quality Control of Genetically Engineered Exosomes
by Christopher Olson, Konstantin Ivanov, Darin Boyes, David Bengford, Joy Ku, Renceh Flojo, Pengyang Zhang and Biao Lu
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 824; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060824 - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 41
Abstract
Exosomes, nanoscale vesicles derived from human cells, offer great promise for targeted drug delivery. However, their inherent diversity and genetic modifications present challenges in terms of ensuring quality in clinical use. To explore solutions, we employed advanced gene fusion and transfection techniques in [...] Read more.
Exosomes, nanoscale vesicles derived from human cells, offer great promise for targeted drug delivery. However, their inherent diversity and genetic modifications present challenges in terms of ensuring quality in clinical use. To explore solutions, we employed advanced gene fusion and transfection techniques in human 293T cells to generate two distinct sets of genetically engineered samples. We used dual-omics analysis, combining transcriptomics and proteomics, to comprehensively assess exosome quality by comparing with controls. Transcriptomic profiling showed increased levels of engineering scaffolds in the modified groups, confirming the success of genetic manipulation. Through transcriptomic analysis, we identified 15 RNA species, including 2008 miRNAs and 13,897 mRNAs, loaded onto exosomes, with no significant differences in miRNA or mRNA levels between the control and engineered exosomes. Proteomics analysis identified changes introduced through genetic engineering and over 1330 endogenous exosome-associated proteins, indicating the complex nature of the samples. Further pathway analysis showed enrichment in a small subset of cellular signaling pathways, aiding in our understanding of the potential biological impacts on recipient cells. Detection of over 100 cow proteins highlighted the effectiveness of LC-MS for identifying potential contaminants. Our findings establish a dual-omics framework for the quality control of engineered exosome products, facilitating their clinical translation and therapeutic applications in nanomedicine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Nanocarriers for Drug Delivery and Targeting, 2nd Edition)
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20 pages, 2999 KiB  
Article
Acid-Responsive Decomposable Nanomedicine Based on Zeolitic Imidazolate Frameworks for Near-Infrared Fluorescence Imaging/Chemotherapy Combined Tumor Theranostics
by Heze Guo, Vincent Mukwaya, Daikun Wu, Shuhan Xiong and Hongjing Dou
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 823; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060823 - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 96
Abstract
Zeolitic imidazolate framework-8 (ZIF-8) nanoparticles (NPs) are gaining traction in tumor theranostics for their effectiveness in encapsulating both imaging agents and therapeutic drugs. While typically, similar hydrophilic molecules are encapsulated in either pure aqueous or organic environments, few studies have explored co-encapsulation of [...] Read more.
Zeolitic imidazolate framework-8 (ZIF-8) nanoparticles (NPs) are gaining traction in tumor theranostics for their effectiveness in encapsulating both imaging agents and therapeutic drugs. While typically, similar hydrophilic molecules are encapsulated in either pure aqueous or organic environments, few studies have explored co-encapsulation of chemotherapeutic drugs and imaging agents with varying hydrophilicity and, consequently, constructed multifunctional ZIF-8 composite NPs for acid-responsive, near-infrared fluorescence imaging/chemotherapy combined tumor theranostics. Here, we present a one-pot method for the synthesis of uniform Cy5.5&DOX@ZIF-8 nanoparticles in mixed solvents, efficiently achieving simultaneous encapsulation of hydrophilic doxorubicin (DOX) and hydrophobic Cyanine-5.5 (Cy5.5). Surface decoration with dextran (Dex) enhanced colloidal stability and biocompatibility. The method significantly facilitated co-loading of Cy5.5 dyes and DOX drugs, endowing the composite NPs with notable fluorescent imaging capabilities and pH-responsive chemotherapy capacities. In vivo near-infrared fluorescence (NIRF) imaging in A549 tumor-bearing mice demonstrated significant accumulation of Cy5.5 at tumor sites due to enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) effects, with fluorescence intensities approximately 48-fold higher than free Cy5.5. Enhanced therapeutic efficiency was observed in composite NPs compared to free DOX, validating tumor-targeted capability. These findings suggest ZIF-8-based nanomedicines as promising platforms for multifunctional tumor theranostics. Full article
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17 pages, 6445 KiB  
Article
Self-Assembled Nanocomposite DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4 for Enhanced Synergistic Photodynamic Therapy and Chemotherapy in Neuroblastoma
by Zhouxia Lu, Xu Chen, Conghui Wang, Xuelian Luo, Xiaohan Wu, Xing Zhao and Song Xiao
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 822; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060822 - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 82
Abstract
DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4 was synthesized via self-assembly, and its physicochemical properties and ability to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) were evaluated. The impact of photodynamic therapy on SH-SY5Y cells was assessed using the MTT assay, while flow cytometry analysis was employed to [...] Read more.
DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4 was synthesized via self-assembly, and its physicochemical properties and ability to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) were evaluated. The impact of photodynamic therapy on SH-SY5Y cells was assessed using the MTT assay, while flow cytometry analysis was employed to detect cell apoptosis. Confocal laser scanning microscopy was utilized to observe the intracellular distribution of DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4 in SH-SY5Y cells. Additionally, fluorescence imaging of DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4 in nude mice bearing SH-SY5Y tumors and examination of the combined effects of photodynamic and chemical therapies were conducted. The incorporation of CB[7] significantly enhanced the optical properties of DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4, resulting in increased ROS production and pronounced toxicity towards SH-SY5Y cells. Moreover, both the apoptotic and mortality rates exhibited significant elevation. In vivo experiments demonstrated that tumor growth inhibition was most prominent in the DOX/TPOR4@CB[7]4 group. π–π interactions facilitated the binding between DOX and photosensitizer TPOR, with TPOR’s naphthalene hydrophilic groups encapsulated within CB[7]’s cavity through host–guest interactions with CB[7]. Therefore, CB[7] can serve as a nanocarrier to enhance the combined application of chemical therapy and photodynamic therapy, thereby significantly improving treatment efficacy against neuroblastoma tumors. Full article
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9 pages, 201 KiB  
Correction
Correction: Shrewsbury, S.B. The Upper Nasal Space: Option for Systemic Drug Delivery, Mucosal Vaccines and “Nose-to-Brain”. Pharmaceutics 2023, 15, 1720
by Stephen B. Shrewsbury
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 821; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060821 - 18 Jun 2024
Viewed by 55
Abstract
In the original publication [...] Full article
14 pages, 8407 KiB  
Article
Stability of Multicomponent Antidote Parenteral Formulations for Autoinjectors against Chemical War Agents (Neurotoxics)
by María José Rodríguez Fernández, Daniel Hernández, Brayan Javier Anaya, Dolores R. Serrano and Juan José Torrado
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 820; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060820 - 17 Jun 2024
Viewed by 210
Abstract
Combinations of different drugs are formulated in autoinjectors for parenteral administration against neurotoxic war agents. In this work, the effects on the chemical stability of the following three variables were studied: (i) type of drug combination (pralidoxime, atropine, and midazolam versus obidoxime, atropine, [...] Read more.
Combinations of different drugs are formulated in autoinjectors for parenteral administration against neurotoxic war agents. In this work, the effects on the chemical stability of the following three variables were studied: (i) type of drug combination (pralidoxime, atropine, and midazolam versus obidoxime, atropine, and midazolam); (ii) pH (3 versus 4); and (iii) type of elastomeric sealing material (PH 701/50 C BLACK versus 4023/50 GRAY). Syringes were stored at three different temperatures: 4, 25, and 40 °C. Samples were assayed at different time points to study the physical appearance, drug sorption on the sealing elastomeric materials, and drug content in solution. Midazolam was unstable in all tested experimental conditions. Drug adsorption was observed in both types of sealing elastomeric materials and was significantly (p < 0.01) dependent on the lipophilicity of the drug. The most stable formulation was the combination of pralidoxime and atropine at pH 4 with the elastomeric sealing material 4023/50 GRAY. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Pharmacy and Formulation)
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23 pages, 5172 KiB  
Article
Development and Quality Control of a Population Pharmacokinetic Model Library for Caspofungin
by Nuo Xu, Yufei Shi, Yixue Wang, Wenyao Mak, Wenyu Yang, Kar Weng Ng, Yue Wu, Zhijia Tang, Qingfeng He, Gangfeng Yan, Xiaoqiang Xiang and Xiao Zhu
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 819; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060819 - 17 Jun 2024
Viewed by 105
Abstract
Background: Caspofungin is an echinocandin antifungal agent commonly used as the first-line therapy for invasive candidiasis, salvage therapy for invasive aspergillosis, and empirical therapy for presumed fungal infections. Pharmacokinetic (PK) variabilities and suboptimal exposure have been reported for caspofungin, increasing the risk of [...] Read more.
Background: Caspofungin is an echinocandin antifungal agent commonly used as the first-line therapy for invasive candidiasis, salvage therapy for invasive aspergillosis, and empirical therapy for presumed fungal infections. Pharmacokinetic (PK) variabilities and suboptimal exposure have been reported for caspofungin, increasing the risk of insufficient efficacy. Objective: This work aimed to develop a caspofungin population pharmacokinetic (popPK) library and demonstrate its utility by assessing the probability of target attainment across diverse settings. Methods: We established a caspofungin popPK model library following a rigorous literature review, re-implementing selected models in R with rxode2. Quality control procedures included a comparison of different studies and assessing covariate impacts. Model libraries were primarily used to perform Monte Carlo simulations to estimate target attainment and guide personalized dosing in Candida infections. Results: A total of 13 models, one- or two-compartment models, were included. The most significant covariates were body size (weight and body surface area), liver function, and albumin level. The results show that children and adults showed considerable differences in pharmacokinetics. For C. albicans and C. parapsilosis, none of the populations achieved a PTA of ≥90% at their respective susceptible MIC values. In contrast, for C. glabrata, 70% of the adult studies reached a PTA of ≥90%, while all pediatric studies achieved the same PTA level. Conclusion: At the recommended dosage, adult patients showed notably lower exposure to caspofungin compared to pediatric patients. Considering body size, liver function, and serum albumin is crucial when determining caspofungin dosage regimens. Furthermore, further research is required to comprehensively understand the pharmacokinetics of caspofungin in pediatric patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Population Pharmacokinetics and Its Clinical Applications)
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27 pages, 1353 KiB  
Review
New Oxazolidinones for Tuberculosis: Are Novel Treatments on the Horizon?
by Ricky Hao Chen, Andrew Burke, Jin-Gun Cho, Jan-Willem Alffenaar and Lina Davies Forsman
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 818; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060818 - 17 Jun 2024
Viewed by 165
Abstract
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is a global health concern. Standard treatment involves the use of linezolid, a repurposed oxazolidinone. It is associated with severe adverse effects, including myelosuppression and mitochondrial toxicity. As such, it is imperative to identify novel alternatives that are better tolerated [...] Read more.
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is a global health concern. Standard treatment involves the use of linezolid, a repurposed oxazolidinone. It is associated with severe adverse effects, including myelosuppression and mitochondrial toxicity. As such, it is imperative to identify novel alternatives that are better tolerated but equally or more effective. Therefore, this review aims to identify and explore the novel alternative oxazolidinones to potentially replace linezolid in the management of TB. The keywords tuberculosis and oxazolidinones were searched in PubMed to identify eligible compounds. The individual drug compounds were then searched with the term tuberculosis to identify the relevant in vitro, in vivo and clinical studies. The search identified sutezolid, tedizolid, delpazolid, eperezolid, radezolid, contezolid, posizolid and TBI-223, in addition to linezolid. An additional search resulted in 32 preclinical and 21 clinical studies. All novel oxazolidinones except posizolid and eperezolid resulted in positive preclinical outcomes. Sutezolid and delpazolid completed early phase 2 clinical studies with better safety and equal or superior efficacy. Linezolid is expected to continue as the mainstay therapy, with renewed interest in drug monitoring. Sutezolid, tedizolid, delpazolid and TBI-223 displayed promising preliminary results. Further clinical studies would be required to assess the safety profiles and optimize the dosing regimens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics)
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47 pages, 2393 KiB  
Review
Progress in Topical and Transdermal Drug Delivery Research—Focus on Nanoformulations
by Dominique Lunter, Victoria Klang, Adina Eichner, Sanela M. Savic, Snezana Savic, Guoping Lian and Franciska Erdő
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 817; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060817 - 16 Jun 2024
Viewed by 271
Abstract
Skin is the largest organ and a multifunctional interface between the body and its environment. It acts as a barrier against cold, heat, injuries, infections, chemicals, radiations or other exogeneous factors, and it is also known as the mirror of the soul. The [...] Read more.
Skin is the largest organ and a multifunctional interface between the body and its environment. It acts as a barrier against cold, heat, injuries, infections, chemicals, radiations or other exogeneous factors, and it is also known as the mirror of the soul. The skin is involved in body temperature regulation by the storage of fat and water. It is an interesting tissue in regard to the local and transdermal application of active ingredients for prevention or treatment of pathological conditions. Topical and transdermal delivery is an emerging route of drug and cosmetic administration. It is beneficial for avoiding side effects and rapid metabolism. Many pharmaceutical, technological and cosmetic innovations have been described and patented recently in the field. In this review, the main features of skin morphology and physiology are presented and are being followed by the description of classical and novel nanoparticulate dermal and transdermal drug formulations. The biophysical aspects of the penetration of drugs and cosmetics into or across the dermal barrier and their investigation in diffusion chambers, skin-on-a-chip devices, high-throughput measuring systems or with advanced analytical techniques are also shown. The current knowledge about mathematical modeling of skin penetration and the future perspectives are briefly discussed in the end, all also involving nanoparticulated systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoparticles for Local Drug Delivery)
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15 pages, 972 KiB  
Article
Improving the Solubility and Bioavailability of Progesterone Cocrystals with Selected Carboxylic Acids
by Jing Xiong, Dezhong Xu, Hui Zhang, Yan Shi, Xiangxiang Wu and Sicen Wang
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 816; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060816 - 16 Jun 2024
Viewed by 231
Abstract
Progesterone (PROG) is a natural steroid hormone with low solubility and high permeability that belongs to biopharmaceutics classification system class II. In this study, novel pharmaceutical cocrystals of PROG were successfully prepared by solvent evaporation or a liquid-assisted grinding process aimed at enhancing [...] Read more.
Progesterone (PROG) is a natural steroid hormone with low solubility and high permeability that belongs to biopharmaceutics classification system class II. In this study, novel pharmaceutical cocrystals of PROG were successfully prepared by solvent evaporation or a liquid-assisted grinding process aimed at enhancing its solubility and bioavailability. The cocrystal formers selected based on crystal engineering principles were carboxylic acids, namely, 4-formylbenzeneboronic acid (BBA), isophthalic acid (IPA), and 3-nitrophthalic acid (NPA). The cocrystal structures were characterized using multiple techniques. Single-crystal X-ray diffraction results showed that the carbonyl group, acting as a hydrogen bond acceptor, was pivotal in the cocrystal network formation, with C–H···O interactions further stabilizing the crystals. The cocrystals exhibited improved solubility and dissolution profiles in vitro, with no significant changes in hygroscopicity. The parallel artificial membrane permeability assay (PAMPA) models indicated that the cocrystals retained PROG’s high permeability. Pharmacokinetic studies in Sprague–Dawley rats revealed that all cocrystals increased PROG exposure, with AUC(0~∞) values for PROG−BBA, PROG−IPA, and PROG−NPA being 742.59, 1201.72 and 442.67 h·ng·mL−1, respectively. These values are substantially higher compared to free PROG, which had an AUC(0~∞) of 301.48 h·ng·mL−1. Notably, PROG−IPA provided the highest AUC improvement, indicating a significant enhancement in bioavailability. Collectively, the study concludes that the cocrystal approach is a valuable strategy for optimizing the physicochemical properties and oral bioavailability of PROG, with potential implications for the development of other poor water-soluble drugs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Pharmacy and Formulation)
12 pages, 1837 KiB  
Article
Application of Photodynamic Therapy with 5-Aminolevulinic Acid to Extracorporeal Photopheresis in the Treatment of Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma: A First-in-Human Phase I/II Study
by Eidi Christensen, Olav Andreas Foss, Toril Holien, Petras Juzenas and Qian Peng
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 815; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060815 - 16 Jun 2024
Viewed by 239
Abstract
Extracorporeal photopheresis (ECP) is a therapeutic modality used for T-cell-mediated disorders. This approach involves exposing isolated white blood cells to photoactivatable 8-methoxypsoralen (8-MOP) and UVA light, aiming to induce apoptosis in T-cells and thereby modulate immune responses. However, conventional 8-MOP-ECP lacks cell selectivity, [...] Read more.
Extracorporeal photopheresis (ECP) is a therapeutic modality used for T-cell-mediated disorders. This approach involves exposing isolated white blood cells to photoactivatable 8-methoxypsoralen (8-MOP) and UVA light, aiming to induce apoptosis in T-cells and thereby modulate immune responses. However, conventional 8-MOP-ECP lacks cell selectivity, killing both healthy and diseased cells, and has shown limited treatment efficacy. An alternative approach under investigation involves the use of 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) in conjunction with light, referred to as ALA-based photodynamic therapy. Our previous ex vivo studies suggest that ALA-ECP exhibits greater selectivity and efficiency in killing T-cells derived from patients with T-cell-mediated disorders compared to those treated with 8-MOP-ECP. We have conducted a clinical phase I–(II) study evaluating ALA-ECP safety and tolerability in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). Here, 20 ALA-ECP treatments were administered to one CTCL patient, revealing no significant changes in vital signs. Two adverse events were reported; both evaluated by the Internal Safety Review Committee as non-serious. In addition, five conceivable events with mainly mild symptoms took place. During the study period, a 53% reduction in skin involvement and a 50% reduction in pruritus was observed. In conclusion, the results indicate that ALA-ECP treatment is safe and well tolerated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photodynamic Therapy: Rising Star in Pharmaceutical Applications)
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15 pages, 2815 KiB  
Article
In Vivo Evaluation of 68Ga-Labeled NOTA-EGFRvIII Aptamer in EGFRvIII-Positive Glioblastoma Xenografted Model
by Jun Young Park, Ye Lim Cho, Tae Sup Lee, Daekyun Lee, Ju-Hyung Kang, Soryong Lim, Yujin Lee, Jae Hyun Lim and Won Jun Kang
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 814; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060814 - 16 Jun 2024
Viewed by 201
Abstract
EGFRvIII is expressed only in tumor cells and strongly in glioblastoma and is considered a promising target in cancer diagnosis and therapy. Aptamers are synthetic single-stranded oligonucleotides that bind to biochemical target molecules with high binding affinity and specificity. This study examined the [...] Read more.
EGFRvIII is expressed only in tumor cells and strongly in glioblastoma and is considered a promising target in cancer diagnosis and therapy. Aptamers are synthetic single-stranded oligonucleotides that bind to biochemical target molecules with high binding affinity and specificity. This study examined the potential of the 68Ga-NOTA-EGFRvIII aptamer as a nuclear imaging probe for visualizing EGFRvIII-expressing glioblastoma by positron emission tomography (PET). EGFRvIII aptamer was selected using the SELEX technology, and flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy verified the high binding affinity to EGFRvIII positive U87MG vIII 4.12 glioma cells but not to EGFRvIII negative U87MG cells. The EGFRvIII aptamer was conjugated with a chelator (1,4,7-triazanonane-1,4,7-triyl)triacetic acid (NOTA) for 68Ga-labeling. The 68Ga-NOTA-EGFRvIII aptamer was prepared using the preconcentration-based labeling method with a high radiolabeling yield at room temperature. Ex vivo biodistribution analyses confirmed the significantly higher tumor uptake of the 68Ga-NOTA-EGFRvIII aptamer in EGFRvIII-expressing xenograft tumors than that in EGFRvIII negative tumors, confirming the specific tumor uptake of the 68Ga-NOTA-EGFRvIII aptamer in vivo. PET imaging studies revealed a high retention rate of the 68Ga-NOTA-EGFRvIII aptamer in U87MG vIII 4.12 tumors but only low uptake levels in U87-MG tumors, suggesting that the 68Ga-NOTA-EGFRvIII aptamer may be used as a PET imaging agent for EGFRvIII-expressing glioblastoma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Radiopharmaceuticals for Disease Diagnoses and Therapy)
17 pages, 8432 KiB  
Article
Alimentary Treatment with Trehalose in a Pharmacological Model of Alzheimer’s Disease in Mice: Effects of Different Dosages and Treatment Regimens
by Alexander B. Pupyshev, Anna A. Akopyan, Michael V. Tenditnik, Marina V. Ovsyukova, Nina I. Dubrovina, Victor M. Belichenko, Tatiana A. Korolenko, Svetlana A. Zozulya, Tatiana P. Klyushnik and Maria A. Tikhonova
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 813; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060813 - 16 Jun 2024
Viewed by 178
Abstract
In the treatment of experimental neurodegeneration with disaccharide trehalose, various regimens are used, predominantly a 2% solution, drunk for several weeks. We studied the effects of different regimens of dietary trehalose treatment in an amyloid-β (Aβ) 25–35-induced murine model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). [...] Read more.
In the treatment of experimental neurodegeneration with disaccharide trehalose, various regimens are used, predominantly a 2% solution, drunk for several weeks. We studied the effects of different regimens of dietary trehalose treatment in an amyloid-β (Aβ) 25–35-induced murine model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Aβ-treated mice received 2% trehalose solution daily, 4% trehalose solution daily (continuous mode) or every other day (intermittent mode), to drink for two weeks. We revealed the dose-dependent effects on autophagy activation in the frontal cortex and hippocampus, and the restoration of behavioral disturbances. A continuous intake of 4% trehalose solution caused the greatest activation of autophagy and the complete recovery of step-through latency in the passive avoidance test that corresponds to associative long-term memory and learning. This regimen also produced an anxiolytic effect in the open field. The effects of all the regimens studied were similar in Aβ load, neuroinflammatory response, and neuronal density in the frontal cortex and hippocampus. Trehalose successfully restored these parameters to the levels of the control group. Thus, high doses of trehalose had increased efficacy towards cognitive impairment in a model of early AD-like pathology. These findings could be taken into account for translational studies and the development of clinical approaches for AD therapy using trehalose. Full article
13 pages, 2988 KiB  
Article
Novel Hydrogels Based on the Nano-Emulsion Formulation Process: Development, Rheological Characterization, and Study as a Drug Delivery System
by Usama Jamshaid, Nicolas Anton, Mohamed Elhassan, Guillaume Conzatti and Thierry F. Vandamme
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 812; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060812 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 217
Abstract
In this study, we present a new type of polymer-free hydrogel made only from nonionic surfactants, oil, and water. Such a system is produced by taking advantage of the physicochemical behavior and interactions between nonionic surfactants and oil and water phases, according to [...] Read more.
In this study, we present a new type of polymer-free hydrogel made only from nonionic surfactants, oil, and water. Such a system is produced by taking advantage of the physicochemical behavior and interactions between nonionic surfactants and oil and water phases, according to a process close to spontaneous emulsification used in the production of nano-emulsions. Contrary to the classical process of emulsion-based gel formulation, we propose a simple one-step approach. Beyond the originality of the concept, these nanoemulgels appear as very promising systems able to encapsulate and deliver various molecules with different solubilities. In the first section, we propose a comprehensive investigation of the gel formation process and its limits through oscillatory rheological characterization, characterization of the sol/gel transitions, and gel strength. The second section is focused on the follow-up of the release of an encapsulated model hydrophilic molecule and on the impact of the rheological gel properties on the release profiles. Full article
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17 pages, 1118 KiB  
Review
Development of neffy, an Epinephrine Nasal Spray, for Severe Allergic Reactions
by Anne K. Ellis, Thomas B. Casale, Michael Kaliner, John Oppenheimer, Jonathan M. Spergel, David M. Fleischer, David Bernstein, Carlos A. Camargo, Jr., Richard Lowenthal and Sarina Tanimoto
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 811; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060811 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 237
Abstract
Epinephrine autoinjectors (EAIs) are used for the treatment of severe allergic reactions in a community setting; however, their utility is limited by low prescription fulfillment rates, failure to carry, and failure to use due to fear of needles. Given that delayed administration of [...] Read more.
Epinephrine autoinjectors (EAIs) are used for the treatment of severe allergic reactions in a community setting; however, their utility is limited by low prescription fulfillment rates, failure to carry, and failure to use due to fear of needles. Given that delayed administration of epinephrine is associated with increased morbidity/mortality, there has been a growing interest in developing needle-free, easy-to-use delivery devices. neffy (epinephrine nasal spray) consists of three Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved components: epinephrine, Intravail A3 (absorption enhancer), and a Unit Dose Spray (UDS). neffy’s development pathway was established in conjunction with the FDA and the European Medicines Agency and included multiple clinical trials to evaluate pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic responses under a variety of conditions, such as self-administration and allergic and infectious rhinitis, as well as an animal anaphylaxis model of severe hypotension, where neffy demonstrated a pharmacokinetic profile that is within the range of approved injection products and a pharmacodynamic response that is as good or better than injections. The increased pulse rate (PR) and blood pressure (BP) observed even one minute following the administration of neffyconfirm the activation of α and β adrenergic receptors, which are the key components of epinephrine’s mechanism of action. The results suggest that neffy will provide a safe and effective needle-free option for the treatment of severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. Full article
16 pages, 4622 KiB  
Article
The Potential of Dutasteride for Treating Multidrug-Resistant Candida auris Infection
by J. Francis Borgio, Noor B. Almandil, Prathas Selvaraj, J. Sherlin John, Rahaf Alquwaie, Eman AlHasani, Norah F. Alhur, Razan Aldahhan, Reem AlJindan, Dana Almohazey, Sarah Almofty, T. Stalin Dhas and Sayed AbdulAzeez
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 810; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060810 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 285
Abstract
Novel antifungal drugs are urgently needed to treat candidiasis caused by the emerging fungal multidrug-resistant pathogen Candida auris. In this study, the most cost-effective drug repurposing technology was adopted to identify an appropriate option among the 1615 clinically approved drugs with anti- [...] Read more.
Novel antifungal drugs are urgently needed to treat candidiasis caused by the emerging fungal multidrug-resistant pathogen Candida auris. In this study, the most cost-effective drug repurposing technology was adopted to identify an appropriate option among the 1615 clinically approved drugs with anti-C. auris activity. High-throughput virtual screening of 1,3-beta-glucanosyltransferase inhibitors was conducted, followed by an analysis of the stability of 1,3-beta-glucanosyltransferase drug complexes and 1,3-beta-glucanosyltransferase–dutasteride metabolite interactions and the confirmation of their activity in biofilm formation and planktonic growth. The analysis identified dutasteride, a drug with no prior antifungal indications, as a potential medication for anti-auris activity in seven clinical C. auris isolates from Saudi Arabian patients. Dutasteride was effective at inhibiting biofilm formation by C. auris while also causing a significant reduction in planktonic growth. Dutasteride treatment resulted in disruption of the cell membrane, the lysis of cells, and crushed surfaces on C. auris, and significant (p-value = 0.0057) shrinkage in the length of C. auris was noted at 100,000×. In conclusion, the use of repurposed dutasteride with anti-C. auris potential can enable rapid recovery in patients with difficult-to-treat candidiasis caused by C. auris and reduce the transmission of nosocomial infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Drugs, Targets and Therapies against Infectious Diseases)
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18 pages, 6204 KiB  
Review
Advances in 2,3-Dimethylmaleic Anhydride (DMMA)-Modified Nanocarriers in Drug Delivery Systems
by Dong Wan, Yanan Wu, Yujun Liu, Yonghui Liu and Jie Pan
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 809; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060809 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 281
Abstract
Cancer represents a significant threat to human health. The cells and tissues within the microenvironment of solid tumors exhibit complex and abnormal properties in comparison to healthy tissues. The efficacy of nanomedicines is inhibited by the presence of substantial and complex physical barriers [...] Read more.
Cancer represents a significant threat to human health. The cells and tissues within the microenvironment of solid tumors exhibit complex and abnormal properties in comparison to healthy tissues. The efficacy of nanomedicines is inhibited by the presence of substantial and complex physical barriers in the tumor tissue. The latest generation of intelligent drug delivery systems, particularly nanomedicines capable of charge reversal, have shown promise in addressing this issue. These systems can transform their charge from negative to positive upon reaching the tumor site, thereby enhancing tumor penetration via transcytosis and promoting cell internalization by interacting with the negatively charged cell membranes. The modification of nanocarriers with 2,3-dimethylmaleic anhydride (DMMA) and its derivatives, which are responsive to weak acid stimulation, represents a significant advance in the field of charge-reversal nanomedicines. This review provides a comprehensive examination of the recent insights into DMMA-modified nanocarriers in drug delivery systems, with a particular focus on their potential in targeted therapeutics. It also discusses the synthesis of DMMA derivatives and their role in charge reversal, shell detachment, size shift, and ligand reactivation mechanisms, offering the prospect of a tailored, next-generation therapeutic approach to overcome the diverse challenges associated with cancer therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymeric Micelles for Drug Delivery and Cancer Therapy)
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15 pages, 6889 KiB  
Article
The Controlled Preparation of a Carrier-Free Nanoparticulate Formulation Composed of Curcumin and Piperine Using High-Gravity Technology
by Ning Han, Yue Liu, Xin Liu, Pengyue Li, Yang Lu, Shouying Du and Kai Wu
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 808; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060808 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 237
Abstract
Carrier-free nanoparticulate formulations are an advantageous platform for the oral administration of insoluble drugs with the expectation of improving their bioavailability. However, the key limitation of exploiting carrier-free nanoparticulate formulations is the controlled preparation of drug nanoparticles on the basis of rational prescription [...] Read more.
Carrier-free nanoparticulate formulations are an advantageous platform for the oral administration of insoluble drugs with the expectation of improving their bioavailability. However, the key limitation of exploiting carrier-free nanoparticulate formulations is the controlled preparation of drug nanoparticles on the basis of rational prescription design. In the following study, we used curcumin (Cur) and piperine (Pip) as model water-insoluble drugs and developed a new method for the controlled preparation of carrier-free drug nanoparticles via multidrug co-assembly in a high-gravity environment. Encouraged by the controlled regulation of the nucleation and crystal growth rate of high-gravity technology accomplished by a rotating packed bed, co-amorphous Cur-Pip co-assembled multidrug nanoparticles with a uniform particle size of 130 nm were successfully prepared, exhibiting significantly enhanced dissolution performance and in vitro cytotoxicity. Moreover, the hydrogen bonding interactions between Cur and Pip in nanoparticles provide them with excellent re-dispersibility and storage stability. Moreover, the oral bioavailability of Cur was dramatically enhanced as a result of the smaller particle size of the co-assembled nanoparticles and the effective metabolic inhibitory effect of Pip. The present study provides a controlled approach to preparing a carrier-free nanoparticulate formulation through a multidrug co-assembly process in the high-gravity field to improve the oral bioavailability of insoluble drugs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmaceutical Technology, Manufacturing and Devices)
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54 pages, 4234 KiB  
Review
Lipid Biomimetic Models as Simple Yet Complex Tools to Predict Skin Permeation and Drug–Membrane Biophysical Interactions
by Eduarda Fernandes, Carla M. Lopes and Marlene Lúcio
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 807; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060807 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 283
Abstract
The barrier function of the skin is primarily determined by its outermost layer, the Stratum Corneum (SC). The SC consists of corneocytes embedded in a lipid matrix composed mainly of ceramides, cholesterol, and free fatty acids in equimolar proportions and is organised in [...] Read more.
The barrier function of the skin is primarily determined by its outermost layer, the Stratum Corneum (SC). The SC consists of corneocytes embedded in a lipid matrix composed mainly of ceramides, cholesterol, and free fatty acids in equimolar proportions and is organised in a complex lamellar structure with different periodicities and lateral packings. This matrix provides a diffusion pathway across the SC for bioactive compounds that are administered to the skin. In this regard, and as the skin administration route has grown in popularity, there has been an increase in the use of lipid mixtures that closely resemble the SC lipid matrix, either for a deeper biophysical understanding or for pharmaceutical and cosmetic purposes. This review focuses on a systematic analysis of the main outcomes of using lipid mixtures as SC lipid matrix models for pharmaceutical and cosmetic purposes. Thus, a methodical evaluation of the main outcomes based on the SC structure is performed, as well as the main recent developments in finding suitable new in vitro tools for permeation testing based on lipid models. Full article
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18 pages, 1842 KiB  
Review
Prospect of Gold Nanoparticles in Pancreatic Cancer
by Tianyi Yin, Jingrun Han, Yuying Cui, Dong Shang and Hong Xiang
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 806; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060806 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 263
Abstract
Pancreatic cancer (PC) is characterized by its notably poor prognosis and high mortality rate, underscoring the critical need for advancements in its diagnosis and therapy. Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), with their distinctive physicochemical characteristics, demonstrate significant application potential in cancer therapy. For example, upon [...] Read more.
Pancreatic cancer (PC) is characterized by its notably poor prognosis and high mortality rate, underscoring the critical need for advancements in its diagnosis and therapy. Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), with their distinctive physicochemical characteristics, demonstrate significant application potential in cancer therapy. For example, upon exposure to lasers of certain wavelengths, they facilitate localized heating, rendering them extremely effective in photothermal therapy. Additionally, their extensive surface area enables the conjugation of therapeutic agents or targeting molecules, increasing the accuracy of drug delivery systems. Moreover, AuNPs can serve as radiosensitizers, enhancing the efficacy of radiotherapy by boosting the radiation absorption in tumor cells. Here, we systematically reviewed the application and future directions of AuNPs in the diagnosis and treatment of PC. Although AuNPs have advantages in improving diagnostic and therapeutic efficacy, as well as minimizing damage to normal tissues, concerns about their potential toxicity and safety need to be comprehensively evaluated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Recent Advances in Anticancer Strategies)
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17 pages, 4395 KiB  
Article
In Vitro and In Vivo Evaluation of Lactoferrin-Modified Liposomal Etomidate with Enhanced Brain-Targeting Effect for General Anesthesia
by Ailing Wu, Houyin Shi, Luhan Yang, Hao Zhang, Xichen Nan, Dan Zhang, Zhuo Zhang, Chun Zhang, Siwei Chen, Xiujuan Fu, Lilan Ou, Lulu Wang, Yanyan Shi and Hao Liu
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 805; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060805 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 220
Abstract
Etomidate is a general anesthetic that has shown good hemodynamic stability without significant cardiovascular or respiratory depression. Despite several kinds of dosage forms having been reported for this drug, formulation types are very limited in clinical practice, and brain-targeted formulations for this central [...] Read more.
Etomidate is a general anesthetic that has shown good hemodynamic stability without significant cardiovascular or respiratory depression. Despite several kinds of dosage forms having been reported for this drug, formulation types are very limited in clinical practice, and brain-targeted formulations for this central nervous system (CNS) drug have been rarely reported. Moreover, studies on the biocompatibility, toxicity, and anesthetic effects of the etomidate preparations in vivo were inadequate. The present study was to develop lactoferrin-modified liposomal etomidate (Eto-lip-LF) for enhanced drug distribution in the brain and improved anesthetic effects. Eto-lip-LF had good stability for storage and hemocompatibility for intravenous injection. Compared with the non-lactoferrin-containing liposomes, the lactoferrin-modified liposomes had notably enhanced brain-targeting ability in vivo, which was probably realized by the binding of transferrin with the transferrin and lactoferrin receptors highly distributed in the brain. Eto-lip-LF had a therapeutic index of about 25.3, higher than that of many other general anesthetics. Moreover, compared with the commercial etomidate emulsion, Eto-lip-LF could better achieve rapid onset of general anesthesia and rapid recovery from anesthesia, probably due to the enhanced drug delivery to the brain. The above results demonstrated the potential of this lactoferrin-modified liposomal etomidate to become an alternative preparation for clinical general anesthesia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Liposomes for Drug Delivery)
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17 pages, 2761 KiB  
Review
Development, Optimization, and Clinical Relevance of Lactoferrin Delivery Systems: A Focus on Ocular Delivery
by Erika Ponzini, Gloria Astolfi, Rita Grandori, Silvia Tavazzi and Piera Versura
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 804; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060804 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 306
Abstract
Lactoferrin (Lf), a multifunctional protein found abundantly in secretions, including tears, plays a crucial role in ocular health through its antimicrobial, immunoregulatory, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant activities. Advanced delivery systems are desirable to fully leverage its therapeutic potential in treating ocular diseases. The process [...] Read more.
Lactoferrin (Lf), a multifunctional protein found abundantly in secretions, including tears, plays a crucial role in ocular health through its antimicrobial, immunoregulatory, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant activities. Advanced delivery systems are desirable to fully leverage its therapeutic potential in treating ocular diseases. The process of Lf quantification for diagnostic purposes underscores the importance of developing reliable, cost-effective detection methods, ranging from conventional techniques to advanced nano-based sensors. Despite the ease and non-invasiveness of topical administration for ocular surface diseases, challenges such as rapid drug elimination necessitate innovations, such as Lf-loaded contact lenses and biodegradable polymeric nanocapsules, to enhance drug stability and bioavailability. Furthermore, overcoming ocular barriers for the treatment of posterior segment disease calls for nano-formulations. The scope of this review is to underline the advancements in nanotechnology-based Lf delivery methods, emphasizing the pivotal role of multidisciplinary approaches and cross-field strategies in improving ocular drug delivery and achieving better therapeutic outcomes for a wide spectrum of eye conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application Progress of Lactoferrin in Biomedicine)
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20 pages, 4629 KiB  
Review
Recent Progress of Multifunctional Molecular Probes for Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Theranostics
by Deyi Zhao, Zhe Li, Ding-Kun Ji and Qian Xia
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 803; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060803 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 285
Abstract
Breast cancer (BC) poses a significant threat to women’s health, with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) representing one of the most challenging and aggressive subtypes due to the lack of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) [...] Read more.
Breast cancer (BC) poses a significant threat to women’s health, with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) representing one of the most challenging and aggressive subtypes due to the lack of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) expression. Traditional TNBC treatments often encounter issues such as low drug efficiency, limited tumor enrichment, and substantial side effects. Therefore, it is crucial to explore novel diagnostic and treatment systems for TNBC. Multifunctional molecular probes (MMPs), which integrate target recognition as well as diagnostic and therapeutic functions, introduce advanced molecular tools for TNBC theranostics. Using an MMP system, molecular drugs can be precisely delivered to the tumor site through a targeted ligand. Real-time dynamic monitoring of drug release achieved using imaging technology allows for the evaluation of drug enrichment at the tumor site. This approach enables accurate drug release, thereby improving the therapeutic effect. Therefore, this review summarizes the recent advancements in MMPs for TNBC theranostics, encompassing the design and synthesis of MMPs as well as their applications in the field of TNBC theranostics. Full article
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15 pages, 1621 KiB  
Review
Application of Scaffold-Based Drug Delivery in Oral Cancer Treatment: A Novel Approach
by Elham Saberian, Andrej Jenča, Adriána Petrášová, Hadi Zare-Zardini and Meysam Ebrahimifar
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 802; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060802 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 269
Abstract
This comprehensive review consolidates insights from two sources to emphasize the transformative impact of scaffold-based drug delivery systems in revolutionizing oral cancer therapy. By focusing on their core abilities to facilitate targeted and localized drug administration, these systems enhance therapeutic outcomes significantly. Scaffolds, [...] Read more.
This comprehensive review consolidates insights from two sources to emphasize the transformative impact of scaffold-based drug delivery systems in revolutionizing oral cancer therapy. By focusing on their core abilities to facilitate targeted and localized drug administration, these systems enhance therapeutic outcomes significantly. Scaffolds, notably those coated with anti-cancer agents such as cisplatin and paclitaxel, have proven effective in inhibiting oral cancer cell proliferation, establishing a promising avenue for site-specific drug delivery. The application of synthetic scaffolds, including Poly Ethylene Glycol (PEG) and poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA), and natural materials, like collagen or silk, in 3D systems has been pivotal for controlled release of therapeutic agents, executing diverse anti-cancer strategies. A key advancement in this field is the advent of smart scaffolds designed for sequential cancer therapy, which strive to refine drug delivery systems, minimizing surgical interventions, accentuating the significance of 3D scaffolds in oral cancer management. These systems, encompassing local drug-coated scaffolds and other scaffold-based platforms, hold the potential to transform oral cancer treatment through precise interventions, yielding improved patient outcomes. Local drug delivery via scaffolds can mitigate systemic side effects typically associated with chemotherapy, such as nausea, alopecia, infections, and gastrointestinal issues. Post-drug release, scaffolds foster a conducive environment for non-cancerous cell growth, adhering and proliferation, demonstrating restorative potential. Strategies for controlled and targeted drug delivery in oral cancer therapy span injectable self-assembling peptide hydrogels, nanocarriers, and dual drug-loaded nanofibrous scaffolds. These systems ensure prolonged release, synergistic effects, and tunable targeting, enhancing drug delivery efficiency while reducing systemic exposure. Smart scaffolds, capable of sequential drug release, transitioning to cell-friendly surfaces, and enabling combinatorial therapy, hold the promise to revolutionize treatment by delivering precise interventions and optimized outcomes. In essence, scaffold-based drug delivery systems, through their varied forms and functionalities, are reshaping oral cancer therapy. They target drug delivery efficiency, diminish side effects, and present avenues for personalization. Challenges like fabrication intricacy, biocompatibility, and scalability call for additional research. Nonetheless, the perspective on scaffold-based systems in oral cancer treatment is optimistic, as ongoing advancements aim to surmount current limitations and fully leverage their potential in cancer therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Materials Science and Technology in Drug Delivery)
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21 pages, 23648 KiB  
Article
Liposome Encapsulation Enhances the Antidiabetic Efficacy of Silibinin
by Svetlana Dinić, Jelena Arambašić Jovanović, Aleksandra Uskoković, Aleksandra Jovanović, Nevena Grdović, Jovana Rajić, Marija Đorđević, Ana Sarić, Branko Bugarski, Melita Vidaković and Mirjana Mihailović
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 801; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060801 (registering DOI) - 13 Jun 2024
Viewed by 234
Abstract
Silibinin has considerable therapeutic potential for the treatment of diabetes through anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and immunomodulatory properties. However, the therapeutic application of silibinin is quite limited due to its poor bioavailability. In the present study, an attempt was made to improve the antidiabetic efficacy [...] Read more.
Silibinin has considerable therapeutic potential for the treatment of diabetes through anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and immunomodulatory properties. However, the therapeutic application of silibinin is quite limited due to its poor bioavailability. In the present study, an attempt was made to improve the antidiabetic efficacy of silibinin by its encapsulation in liposomal vesicles. The liposomes with a high encapsulation efficiency of silibinin (96%) and a zeta potential of −26.2 ± 0.6 mV were developed and studied using nicotinamide/streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. Administration of silibinin-loaded liposomes to diabetic rats lowered glucose levels, increased insulin levels, and improved pancreatic islet architecture. The anti-inflammatory effect of silibinin-loaded liposomes was demonstrated by a decrease in serum C-reactive protein (CRP) levels and a reduced deposition of collagen fibers in the islets of diabetic rats. Furthermore, silibinin-loaded liposomes were more efficient in lowering glucose, alanine transaminase, triglyceride, and creatinine levels in diabetic rats than pure silibinin. In addition, silibinin-loaded liposomes had a significantly better effect on beta-cell mass and Glut2 glucose receptor distribution in diabetic islets than pure silibinin. The present results clearly show that liposome encapsulation of silibinin enhances its antidiabetic efficacy, which may contribute to the therapeutic benefit of silibinin in the treatment of diabetes and its complications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Pharmaceuticals Focused on Anti-inflammatory Activities)
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21 pages, 4436 KiB  
Article
Benznidazole-Loaded Polymeric Nanoparticles for Oral Chemotherapeutic Treatment of Chagas Disease
by Lucas Resende Dutra Sousa, Thays Helena Chaves Duarte, Viviane Flores Xavier, Aline Coelho das Mercês, Gabriel Maia Vieira, Maximiliano Delany Martins, Cláudia Martins Carneiro, Viviane Martins Rebello dos Santos, Orlando David Henrique dos Santos and Paula Melo de Abreu Vieira
Pharmaceutics 2024, 16(6), 800; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics16060800 - 13 Jun 2024
Viewed by 358
Abstract
Chagas disease (CD) is a worldwide public health problem. Benznidazole (BZ) is the drug used to treat it. However, in its commercial formulation, it has significant side effects and is less effective in the chronic phase of the infection. The development of particulate [...] Read more.
Chagas disease (CD) is a worldwide public health problem. Benznidazole (BZ) is the drug used to treat it. However, in its commercial formulation, it has significant side effects and is less effective in the chronic phase of the infection. The development of particulate systems containing BZ is therefore being promoted. The objective of this investigation was to develop polymeric nanoparticles loaded with BZ and examine their trypanocidal impact in vitro. Two formulas (BNP1 and BNP2) were produced through double emulsification and freeze drying. Subsequent to physicochemical and morphological assessment, both formulations exhibited adequate yield, average particle diameter, and zeta potential for oral administration. Cell viability was assessed in H9C2 and RAW 264.7 cells in vitro, revealing no cytotoxicity in cardiomyocytes or detrimental effects in macrophages at specific concentrations. BNP1 and BNP2 enhanced the effect of BZ within 48 h using a treatment of 3.90 μg/mL. The formulations notably improved NO reduction, particularly BNP2. The findings imply that the compositions are suitable for preclinical research, underscoring their potential as substitutes for treating CD. This study aids the quest for new BZ formulations, which are essential in light of the disregard for the treatment of CD and the unfavorable effects associated with its commercial product. Full article
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