Background: At present, the controlled local drug delivery is a very promising approach
compared to systemic administration, since it mostly targets the affected tissue. In fact, various drug
carriers for local delivery have been prepared with improved therapeutic efficacy.
Objective: In situ polymer gels are drug delivery systems that not only present liquid characteristics
before their administration in body, but once they are administered, form gels due to gelation. Their
gelation mechanism is due to factors such as pH alteration, temperature change, ion activation or ultraviolet irradiation. In situ gels offer various advantages compared to conventional formulations due to
their ability to release drugs in a sustainable and controllable manner. Most importantly, in situ gels can
be used in local drug delivery applications for various diseases.
Methods: This review includes the basic knowledge and theory of in situ gels as well as their various
applications according to their administration route.
Results: Various natural, semisynthetic, and synthetic polymers can produce in situ polymeric gels. For
example, natural polysaccharides such as alginic acid, chitosan, gellan gum, carrageenan etc. have been
utilized as in situ gels for topical delivery. Besides the polysaccharides, poloxamers, poly(Nisopropylacrylamide), poly(ethyleneoxide)/ (lactic-co-glycolic acid), and thermosensitive liposome
systems can be applied as in situ gels. In most cases, in situ polymeric gels could be applied via various
administration routes such as oral, vaginal, ocular, intranasal and injectable.
Conclusion: To conclude, it can be revealed that in situ gels could be a promising alternative carrier for
both chronic and immediate diseases.