Monday, June 8, 2015

Nanotechnology drug delivery approaches for the treatment of glioblastoma

ACNB: Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is by far the most common and aggressive form of glial tumor. It is characterized by a highly proliferative population of cells that invade surrounding tissue and that frequently recur after surgical resection and chemotherapy. Over the last decades, a number of promising novel pharmacological approaches have been investigated, but most of them have failed clinical trials due to some side-effects such as toxicity and poor drug delivery to the brain. The major obstacle in the treatment of GBM is the presence of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Due to their relatively high molecular weight, most therapeutic drugs fail to cross the BBB from the blood circulation.

This paper sheds light on the characteristics of GBM and the challenges of current pharmacological treatments. A closer look is given to the role of nanotechnology in the field of drug delivery, and its application in the treatment of brain tumors such as GBM.
For this purpose, effort was made to select the most recent studies using predefined search criteria that included at least one of the following keywords in the PubMed and Medline databases: glioblastoma, drug delivery, blood-brain barrier, nanotechnology, and nanoparticle.
Breakthrough in nanotechnology offers promising applications in cancer therapy and targeted drug delivery. However, more efforts need to be devoted to the development of novel therapeutic strategies that enable the delivery of drugs to desired areas of the brain with limited side-effects and higher therapeutic efficiency.