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Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2001 Nov 5;52(2):139-44.

Chitosan for mucosal vaccination.

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Leiden/Amsterdam Center for Drug Research, Division of Pharmaceutical Technology, P.O. Box 9502, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands.


The striking advantage of mucosal vaccination is the production of local antibodies at the sites where pathogens enter the body. Because vaccines alone are not sufficiently taken up after mucosal administration, they need to be co-administered with penetration enhancers, adjuvants or encapsulated in particles. Chitosan easily forms microparticles and nanoparticles which encapsulate large amounts of antigens such as ovalbumin, diphtheria toxoid or tetanus toxoid. It has been shown that ovalbumin loaded chitosan microparticles are taken up by the Peyer's patches of the gut associated lymphoid tissue (GALT). This unique uptake demonstrates that chitosan particulate drug carrier systems are promising candidates for oral vaccination. Additionally, after co-administering chitosan with antigens in nasal vaccination studies, a strong enhancement of both mucosal and systemic immune responses is observed. This makes chitosan very suitable for nasal vaccine delivery. In conclusion, chitosan particles, powders and solutions are promising candidates for mucosal vaccine delivery. Mucosal vaccination not only reduces costs and increases patient compliance, but also complicates the invasion of pathogens through mucosal sites.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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