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Nanomedicine (Lond). 2016;11(5):545-64. doi: 10.2217/nnm.16.1. Epub 2016 Feb 19.

Nanodrug formulations to enhance HIV drug exposure in lymphoid tissues and cells: clinical significance and potential impact on treatment and eradication of HIV/AIDS.

Author information

Cancer Metastasis Alert & Prevention Center, College of Chemistry, Fuzhou University, Fuzhou, Fujian 350002, PR China.
Department of Pharmaceutics, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA.
Department of Bioengineering, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA.


Although oral combination antiretroviral therapy effectively clears plasma HIV, patients on oral drugs exhibit much lower drug concentrations in lymph nodes than blood. This drug insufficiency is linked to residual HIV in cells of lymph nodes. While nanoformulations improve drug solubility, safety and delivery, most HIV nanoformulations are intended to extend plasma levels. A stable nanodrug combination that transports, delivers and accumulates in lymph nodes is needed to clear HIV in lymphoid tissues. This review discusses limitations of current oral combination antiretroviral therapy and advances in anti-HIV nanoformulations. A 'systems approach' has been proposed to overcome these limitations. This concept has been used to develop nanoformulations for overcoming drug insufficiency, extending cell and tissue exposure and clearing virus for treating HIV/AIDS.


HIV; combination antiretroviral therapy; cure for AIDS; long-acting; lymphatic drug insufficiency; nanoformulation; systems approach; targeted drug delivery

[Available on 2017-03-01]
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Conflict of interest statement

Financial & competing interests disclosure This work is supported in part by NIH grants numbers AI-077390, AI-077390-S1, AI-077390-S2, AI-077390-S3, UM1 AI-120176 and 1UL1-RR025014. RJY Ho is also supported by the Milo Gibaldi endowment. This work is also supported in part by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 81472767 and 81201709). J Shao now holds an appointment at Fuzhou University, PR China. The authors have no other relevant affiliations or financial involvement with any organization or entity with a financial interest in or financial conflict with the subject matter or materials discussed in the manuscript apart from those disclosed. No writing assistance was utilized in the production of this manuscript.

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