Nanotechnology exerts an increasing impact on the development of more effective tools for the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases. This applies in particular to central nervous system (CNS) disorders. Development of therapeutics for CNS is, in fact, one of the most challenging areas in drug development, mainly due to the presence of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) which separates the blood from the cerebral parenchyma thus limiting the brain uptake of the vast majority of neurotherapeutic agents. Among the several strategies which have been developed over the last years in order to overcome this problem, nanotechnology-based approaches have gained increasing attention as the most promising strategies for CNS targeted drug delivery. Nanocarriers offer several advantages such as the possibility to maintain drug levels in a therapeutically desirable range, as well as the increase of half-lives, solubility, stability and permeability of drugs. Furthermore, the system can be designed in such a way as to release the drug in a controlled way or in a triggered way. This review focuses on lipid-based nanocarriers and more specifically on liposomes, lipid-core micelles, and lipid nanocapsules, and provides an update on their composition and use, including recent patents in the field.
Keywords: Blood-brain barrier, CNS, drug delivery, gene delivery, liposome, micelle, nanocapsule, nanocarrier, targeting, LIPOSOMES, Triggered Drug Release
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