In the field of drug delivery, smart and intelligent approaches have created lot of attention among researchers, in order to improve the efficacy of conventional dosage forms. Material science has played a key role in developing these intelligent systems that can deliver therapeutic cargo on-demand. Stimuli responsive material based drug delivery systems have emerged as one of the most promising innovative tool for site specific delivery. Several endogenous and exogenous stimuli have been exploited to devise “stimuli-responsive” materials for targeted drug delivery.
For better understanding, these novel systems have been broadly classified into two categories: Internally Regulated Systems (pH, ionic strength, glucose, enzymes and endogenous receptors) and Externally Regulated Systems (Light, magnetic field, electric field, ultrasound, and temperature). This review has followed a systematic approach through separately describing the design, development and applications of each stimuli responsive system in a constructive manner.
Development encompasses synthesis and characterization of each system, has been discussed in a structured manner. From advantages to drawbacks, a detailed description has been included for each smart stimuli responsive material. For a complete review in this niche area of drug delivery, wide range of therapeutic applications including recent advancement of these smart materials has been incorporated.
From current scenario to future development, a precise overview on each type of system has been dealt in this article. In summary, it is expected that researchers working in this novel area will be highly benefited from this scientific review.