Nanoparticles in Drug Delivery: Mechanism of Action, Formulation and Clinical Application Towards Reduction in Drug-Associated Nephrotoxicity

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Introduction: Over the past few decades, nanoparticles (NPs) have gained immeasurable interest in the field of drug delivery. Various NP formulations have been disseminated in drug development in an attempt to increase efficacy, safety and tolerability of incorporated drugs. In this context, NP formulations that increase solubility, control release, and/or affect the in vivo disposition of drugs, were developed to improve the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of encapsulated drugs.Areas covered: In this article, important properties related to NP function such as particle size, surface charge and shape are disseminated. Also, the current understanding of how NP characteristics affect particle uptake and targeted delivery is elucidated. Selected NP systems currently used in delivery of drugs in biological systems and their production methods are discussed as well. Emphasis is placed on current NP formulations that are shown to reduce drug-induced adverse renal complications.Expert opinion: Formulation designs utilizing NP-encapsulated drugs offer alternative pharmacotherapy options with improved safety profiles for current and emerging drugs. NPs have been shown to increase the therapeutic index of several entrapped drugs mostly by decreasing drug localization and side effects on organs. Recent studies on NP-encapsulated chemotherapeutic and antibiotic medications show enhanced therapeutic outcomes by altering drug degradation, increasing systemic circulation and/or enhancing cell specific targeting. They may also reduce the distribution of encapsulated drugs into the kidneys and attenuate drug-associated adverse renal complications. The usefulness of NP formulation in reducing the nephrotoxicity of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is an underexplored territory that deserves more attention.