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In our efforts to promote education, our very own drug development and drug delivery expert and consultant, Judy Senior, Ph.D., provides an eye opening review of the recently published nanotechnology book entitled 'Nanoparticulate Drug Delivery Systems', D. Thassu, M. Deleers, and Y. Pathak, Editors, Informa Healthcare, 2007, Hardback, 352, IBSN:
October 18th, 2007
Nanotechnology Book Review by Judy Senior, Ph.D., NanotechNexus Member, Independent Pharmaceutical Development and Drug Delivery Consultant
Even if reading books on nanotechnology is not a priority for you, this dazzling overview of nanoparticulate systems might just change your perspective. A large part of the appeal of this text lies in the tremendous breadth of technologies embraced while providing suitable depth in such areas as nanocrystals, nanofibers, biological fate and behavior of nanoparticulate systems, ocular and gene delivery, and other hot areas. Not only are classic drug delivery systems included, but also novel and futuristic systems crossing into the realms of physics, electrical engineering and electronics. These inspiring 352 pages plus 8 pages of color figures explore the latest developments in particulate drug delivery including familiar technologies such as liposomes and polymeric micelles all the way through to nanoengineered prosthetic devices, electrospun nanofibers, and nanocontainers for detection and destruction of tumors, for example.
One of the joys of a contributed chapter book such as this is the range of experience of the authors. The editors are to be congratulated on the diversity of backgrounds and approaches of the authors: the range of counties and continents represented, and the balance between academia and industry gives this work a truly global perspective.
How do nanoparticulate systems differ from other types of drug delivery systems in their applications in the development of new drugs and the search for new cures and uses for old drugs? After all, a wide variety of drug delivery systems have been available for decades in pharmaceutical development and some are now marketed products. For example, liposomal Doxil®, itself a nanoparticulate liposomal system, is reported as having made close to half billion dollars in sales.
The novelty of nanoparticulate systems lies in both engineering and manufacturing advances, and solutions to development challenges (e.g. product safety, stability), and therapeutic opportunities created such as unique penetration properties with targeted toxicity to disease sites. As elaborated in the opening chapter, particulates in the range of 100 nm down to the atomic level of around 0.2 nm, are creating so much excitement because this is the range where materials can have different and medically enhanced properties compared with the same material of a larger size.
However this book by no means confines itself to the <100nm size range. With good reason, there are many references to previous studies in the field which may use larger particulate systems, and to systems in this size range that have been providing extraordinary biomedical solutions long before the term ‘nanotechnology' became a buzz word. This text greatly benefits from authors describing current discoveries and ideas in the context of a rich history of drug delivery research such as in vivo fate and behavior of particulate carriers across a spectrum of sizes.
Whatever your level of interest and experience in nanotechnology, be it from the medical, biological, manufacturing, or engineering standpoint, this volume brings it all together to create one reading experience you won't want to miss.
Judy H. Senior, Ph.D.
Independent Pharmaceutical Development & Drug Delivery Consultant