Drug Targeting Organ-Specific Strategies

Book Reviews: It is our prime intention to cover the topics of this series as comprehensively as possible. Thus, the authors are very pleased to introduce this volume focusing on organ specific strategies of drug targeting.

About hundred years ago, Paul Ehrlich put forward his theory of “the magic bullet” as an approach to tame disease. Scientists have ever since worked on the principle of drug targeting based on this idea of specifically delivering drugs to diseased cells. Especially nowadays that by high-throughput screening and molecular modelling techniques highly potent drugs are being developed that interfere with general (signal transduction) processes in cells in the body, the need for their application by a drug targeting approach has almost become inevitable.

Progress in the field of drug targeting has been slow till thirty years ago, With the advent of the monoclonal antibody technology in the mid-seventies of the last century as well as the development of liposomal devices as carriers did the drug targeting field expand and did the clinical application become a feasible aim.

Monoclonal antibodies, liposomes, polymers, proteins, and many other entities have ever since seen the light as carrier molecules. And, as with most technological developments, they have all encountered a vast array of difficulties, ranging from problems in the synthesis of the carriers and drug conjugates to unfavorable pharmacokinetics and toxicity. Furthermore, lack of knowledge on the anatomical and physiological barriers in the body hampered application. However, many problems have been solved, not in the least due to the advent of recombinant DNA technology to construct better defined carriers that can be produced in large amounts, and advanced pharmaceutical formulation technology. Similarly, the rapid developments in molecular biology, cell biology and immunology led to a better understanding of the processes taking place in vivo upon administration of carriers and conjugates. Important conclusion is that drug targeting has become a multidisciplinary research area.

What has been achieved until now? In the year 2001, several liposome and antibody based strategies have been or will soon be approved for clinical application, some for the treatment of cancer, some for the treatment of bacterial infections, some for chronic inflammatory diseases. Furthermore, many monoclonal antibodies without a drug or pharmacologically active molecule attached are in the clinic. Their intrinsic targeting and effector function is obviously sufficient for the pharmacological effect.

Only a few polymer or protein based drug targeting strategies have reached the clinic and an important question in the coming years will be whether these strategies eventually will reach it. Everything will depend on their effectiveness and improved toxicity profiles as compared to free drug only and the ease of their production at large scale.

The present volume is in several respects unique. It provides a map of the body from the viewpoint of drug targeting/drug delivery. Potentials and limitations of targeting strategies Drug Targeting Organ-Specific Strategies. Edited by G. Molema, D. K. F. Meijer are discussed in the light of organ related diseases for each organ separately. Furthermore, novel technologies are described that may be useful in the future to allow an even better product to be developed that can be clinically exploited at a more rapid pace.

Bibliographical Data of Drug Targeting Organ-Specific Strategies

Reference Type: Book
Record Number: xx
Author: Grietje Molema, Dirk K. F. Meijer, Raimund Mannhold
Year: 2001
Place Published: Weinheim, Germany
Publisher: Wiley-VCH
Number of Pages: 381
Edition: 1st
ISBN -10: 3527299890
ISBN-13: 978-3527299898
Kindle Available: NO
Buy: Get it on Amazon

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