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J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2018 Dec 12. pii: jpet.118.254797. doi: 10.1124/jpet.118.254797. [Epub ahead of print]

Liposomal nanostructures for drug delivery in gastrointestinal cancers.

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UNC Chapel Hill.
UNC Chapel Hill


Gastrointestinal (GI) cancers like liver, pancreatic, colorectal, and gastric cancer remain some of the most difficult and aggressive cancers. Nanoparticles like liposomes had been approved in the clinic for cancer therapy dating as far back as in 1995. Over the years, liposomal formulations have come a long way, facing several roadblocks, and failures, and advanced by optimizing formulations and incorporating novel design approaches to navigate therapeutic delivery challenges. The first liposomal formulation for a gastrointestinal cancer drug was approved recently in 2015, setting the stage for further clinical developments of liposome-based delivery systems for therapies against GI malignancies. This article reviews the design considerations and strategies that can be employed to deliver drugs to GI tumors, the wide range of therapeutics that had been explored, in preclinical as well as clinical studies, and the current therapies that are being investigated in the clinic, against GI malignancies.


anticancer agents; cancer; drug delivery; liposomal drug delivery; liposomes

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