Inflammatory bowel diseases are chronic diseases that affect the gastrointestinal tract. Mesalamine, corticosteroids, immunosuppressants and biological agents are currently used to treat these diseases. Due to inadequacies of the currently available delivery systems, a large number of patients do not respond to treatment, especially when they are affected by distal colonic disease. Multimatrix (MMX™) technology comprises hydrophilic and lipophilic excipients, enclosed within a gastro-resistant, pH-dependent coating. This new delivery technology has been used to modify some commonly used drugs, including mesalamine and budesonide, as well as heparin, which are now being investigated for their utility in the management of IBD. Aim: The aim of this review is to explore the MMX delivery technology and its efficacy for the treatment of IBD. Results: The results of various studies involving MMX drugs have been published. Mesalamine MMX induces clinical and endoscopic remission in patients with mild to moderate ulcerative colitis (UC) compared with placebo. Positive results have also been observed with MMX budesonide in two phase I studies. In a pilot study involving ten patients with UC, efficacy of heparin-MMX as an IBD therapy was observed. Conclusion: MMX is a promising new delivery system that can improve efficacy of current and new drugs, augmenting targeting to the affected tract, thereby increasing response and remission rates for those drugs in patients with IBD.
Keywords: Multimatrix, MMX, Crohn, Colitis, IBD, mesalamine, budesonide, heparin