Bionanotechnology: Next-Generation Therapeutic Tools

Polymeric Nanomaterials for Cancer Theranostics

Author(s): Rajarshi Roychoudhury *

Pp: 84-97 (14)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815051278122010006

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Despite global efforts for decades, the number of cancer cases is still on the rise. Although in recent times there has been significant improvement in immunotherapy, chemotherapy remains standard care for cancer patients alongside radiation and surgery. Chemotherapeutic drugs and diagnostic agents (MRI, PET, Ultrasound) lack specificity and often suffer from poor solubility and unwanted biodistribution. This results in unnecessary high dose requirements, systemic toxicity, and compromised quality of life for the patients. Beside therapy, early diagnosis is essential for the successful treatment and cure of cancer patients, just like any other disease. Therefore, a suitable delivery vehicle is always needed for the theranostic agents. Viral vectors are routinely used for the delivery of genetic material. But parallelly, nanoparticles made with biodegradable, non-toxic, and non-immunogenic polymers are often used as a carrier of chemotherapy drugs, diagnostic agents as well as genetic materials. Once decorated with specific ligands, these nanocontainers can deliver cargo molecules to target tissue and organs with high precision.

Keywords: Biodistribution, Cancer, Cargo, Cationic, Chemotherapy, Delivery, Diagnostic, Drug, Encapsulation, Gene, Hydrophobic, Hydrophilic, Immunotherapy, Ligand, Nanoparticle, Polymer, Receptor, Target, Toxicity, Systemic.

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