This paper reviews the functional polymer membrane and membrane based cell drug evaluation models for drug discovery. Based on the characteristics of biological membranes in vivo, chemical modification methods of synthetic membrane, including blending and surface modification are explored to mitigate the membrane fouling and improve biocompatibility. Different membrane-based cell models used in drug investigation and related trouble shooting are analyzed in detail. Specific attention is given to the current studies on ADME/Tox of drugs using membrane-based in vitro models of cells including Caco-2, hepatocytes or renal cells, which can be used to evaluate the feasibility of polymer membrane in drug investigation. The progress toward solving present bottlenecks of the facilitated cell models are supposed to provide great benefits to drug discovery in pharmaceutical industry.
Keywords: Biocompatibility, cell models, drug, modification, polymer membrane, combinatorial chemical synthesis, high throughput screening, drug screening, bioreactors, osmosis, cell culture, cell signaling, physicochemical characteristics, Surface modification, adsorption