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Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2004 Jan 13;56(1):9-16.

Polymeric micelles to deliver photosensitizers for photodynamic therapy.

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Department of Pharmaceutics, Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences, Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Polymeric micelles are emerging as attractive drug delivery systems. Hydrophobic drugs including photosensitizers for photodynamic therapy can be covalently bound or physically entrapped in the core of the micelles and thus be systemically delivered to, for example, tumors using passive or active targeting strategies. Polymers used for photosensitizer encapsulation include pluronics, poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-lipid conjugates, and pH-sensitive poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) based micelles or polyion complex (PIC) micelles. This paper reviews the results obtained so far, including drug loading, biodistribution studies, and therapeutic efficiency. The pH-sensitive micelles appear to be promising candidates for photosensitizer delivery.

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