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Microfluidics: A focus on improved cancer targeted drug delivery systems

Khan, Ikram Ullah, Serra, Christophe A., Anton, Nicolas, Vandamme, Thierry
Journal of controlled release 2013 v.172 no.3 pp. 1065-1074
adverse effects, antineoplastic agents, cost effectiveness, drug delivery systems, markets, patient compliance
Pharmaceutical science aims to localize the pharmacological activity of the drug at the site of action. Targeted drug delivery systems can directly deliver the payload to the desired site of action without undesired interaction with normal cells. This is especially important for anticancer drugs to avoid side effects and improve therapeutic response and patient compliance. Number of targeted drug delivery systems for anticancer drugs are in market and many more are in research phase. Most of the methods so far used suffer from poor drug loading, variation in composition, attachment of targeting ligands to carriers, and in vivo and in vitro cellular uptake in cancer cell. Recently microfluidic techniques are gaining attention from researchers and formulation scientists due to the ability of having a better control over the above said parameters not to mention saving cost, material, time and the possibility offered to synthesize different system morphologies from nano to microscale. This article reviews the recent advances in the design of various targeted systems obtained through microfluidics and to some extent addresses challenges and hurdles faced during cancer cell treatment.