MedComm-Biomaterials and Applications | Dendrimer and dendrimer gel-derived drug delivery systems: Breaking bottlenecks of topical administration of glaucoma medications


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Two major barriers to topical ocular drug delivery. Reprinted with permission from Li et al.

Due to high structural flexibility, multidrug carrying capability, and tunable size, dendrimers have been used as suitable carriers for ophthalmic drug delivery. Drug molecules can be either encapsulated or chemically coupled to dendrimers. The nanoscopic size, spheroidal shape, and cationic surface of polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimers promote their interaction with the cornea and result in prolonged precorneal retention. Dendrimers could be further cross-linked to produce three-dimensional hydrogel networks or dendrimer hydrogels (DH). The properties of the DH can be readily adjusted to maintain both fluidity and adhesiveness, making them suitable for developing topical ocular drug formulations. Micro-/nano- sized DHs, that is, dendrimer micro-/nano- gels, have unique properties such as ease of administration, large specific surface area for adhesion, and drug targeting functionalities, making them attractive for ophthalmic drug delivery. This perspective reports advances in PAMAM dendrimer based drug delivery systems including drug conjugates and micro- and nano- gels to enhance and sustain the delivery of multiple anti-glaucoma drugs, Dendrimer and dendrimer gel-derived drug delivery systems hold great potential as multifunctional  topical drug delivery systems for the eye.

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