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Current Pharmaceutical Design


ISSN (Print): 1381-6128
ISSN (Online): 1873-4286

Review Article

Potential of Natural Biomaterials in Nano-scale Drug Delivery

Author(s): Chahinez Houacine, Sakib Saleem Yousaf, Iftikhar Khan, Rajneet Kaur Khurana and Kamalinder K. Singh*

Volume 24, Issue 43, 2018

Page: [5188 - 5206] Pages: 19

DOI: 10.2174/1381612825666190118153057

Price: $65


Background: The usage of natural biomaterials or naturally derived materials intended for interface with biological systems has steadily increased in response to the high demand of amenable materials, which are suitable for purpose, biocompatible and biodegradable. There are many naturally derived polymers which overlap in terms of purpose as biomaterials but are equally diverse in their applications.

Methods: This review examines the applications of the following naturally derived polymers; hyaluronic acid, silk fibroin, chitosan, collagen and tamarind polysaccharide (TSP); further focusing on the biomedical applications of each as well as emphasising on individual novel applications.

Results: Each of the polymers was found to demonstrate a wide variety of successful biomedical applications fabricated as wound dressings, scaffolds, matrices, films, sponges, implants or hydrogels to suit the therapeutic need. Interestingly, blending and amelioration of polymer structures were the two selection strategies to modify the functionality of the polymers to suit the purpose. Further, these polymers have shown promise to deliver small molecule drugs, proteins and genes as nano-scale delivery systems.

Conclusion: The review highlights the range of applications of the aforementioned polymers as biomaterials. Hyaluronic acid, silk fibroin, chitosan, collagen and TSP have been successfully utilised as biomaterials in the subfields of implant enhancement, wound management, drug delivery, tissue engineering and nanotechnology. Whilst there are a number of associated advantages (i.e. biodegradability, biocompatibility, non-toxic, nonantigenic as well as amenability) the selected disadvantages of each individual polymer provide significant scope for their further exploration and overcoming challenges like feasibility of mass production at a relatively low cost.

Keywords: Nanotechnology, natural polymers, biocompatibility, non-toxic, tamarind polysaccharide (TSP), collagen.

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