Journal of Integrated Health Sciences

: 2022  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1--2

Future outlooks: Polymeric drug delivery systems

AK Seth 
 Department of Pharmacy, Sumandeep Vidyapeeth Deemed to be University, Vadodara, Gujarat, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. A K Seth
Department of Pharmacy, Sumandeep Vidyapeeth Deemed to be University, Piparia, Waghodia, Vadodara, Gujarat

How to cite this article:
Seth A K. Future outlooks: Polymeric drug delivery systems.J Integr Health Sci 2022;10:1-2

How to cite this URL:
Seth A K. Future outlooks: Polymeric drug delivery systems. J Integr Health Sci [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 Oct 5 ];10:1-2
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The polymeric drug delivery system has become a frontier research area to improve the therapeutic index along with the safety and efficacy by controlling the rate, time, and place of release of the drugs in the body to combat the deadly diseases through new approaches and modes of action the drugs.[1] This novel drug delivery technique involves multidisciplinary scientific perspectives to provide various advantages in an improving therapeutic index and the bioavailability of the drug at the specific site.[2] Researchers are designing polymeric drug delivery systems by combined approaches of traditional drug delivery systems and the novel engineered technologies to aim the delivery of the drug to the target site with desired release rate.

Many biodegradable and bioabsorbable polymers have made their strong presence known to design novel drug delivery systems in a controlled manner at the target site. The bioabsorbable and biodegradable polymers such as hydrogels such as poly (lactic acid) and poly (glycolic acid) and their copolymers have been the choice of selection to create the delivery systems,[3] providing the safe framework for delivering the drugs without any harm to the body.

In the past few decades, extensive research on targeted drug delivery systems has occurred. In many cases, scientists could create delivery systems to target the site but still find it challenging to deliver the drug to parts of the body, such as the brain. However, technological-driven carrier-mediated nanodrug delivery systems have been seen as a bluish hope to transport the drug across the blood–brain barrier and provide a rational drug distribution to the brain.

Many polymers have created drug delivery systems introducing therapeutic substances into specific receptors. Using biodegradable and bioreducible polymers allows the design of the drug delivery systems to deliver the therapeutic agent at the right place, time, and rate.

The polymeric drug delivery systems are designed and developed using natural polymers such as arginine, chitosan, dextrin, polysaccharides, poly (glycolic acid), poly (lactic acid), and hyaluronic acid, similarly, by using synthetic polymers such as poly (2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate), poly (N-isopropyl acrylamide), poly (ethylenimine), and dendritic polymers.

In the case of polymeric gene delivery systems, two types of vectors, viral and nonviral vectors, are correctly used as a delivery vehicle. Nonviral techniques are currently being studied and found as a safe and effective way to deliver genetic material from outside the body to inside the cell nucleus. Nonviral vectors considered for the gene delivery may be plasmid DNA, liposome–DNA complexes (lipoplexes), polymer–DNA complexes (polyplexes), and oligonucleotides. They can conveniently transfer the gene alone or in the form of complexes. Moreover, the viral vectors are the blueprint of a virus but not the actual virus itself. Scientists use the part of the virus's blueprint that helps deliver the genetic material to the cell nucleus. Once the vector reaches the target cell, it can pass through the cell membrane, enter the cell, and hit the nucleus. At the nucleus, it disassembles itself and delivers the genetic materials into the nucleus, which instructs the cell to provide the desired treatment effect.


The polymeric drug delivery systems developed with natural and synthetic polymers have attracted researchers to design remarkable target-specific delivery systems. The polymeric drug delivery has advantages to developing the biomimetic and bioinspired systems, which have a bright future with lots of potential to solve any obstacles encountered in the polymeric drug delivery. Most commonly, problems are related to the site-specific delivery, the amount to be delivered, and the delivery rate. Such systems have progressed by applying biocompatible and bio-related copolymers and dendrimers for cancer treatment. The unique properties of dendrimers, such as high branching, multi-valence, globular architecture, and well-defined molecular weight, make them promising new scaffolds for polymeric drug delivery systems.

Further, genetic engineering is a technique to design new polymeric drug carriers with improved properties, such as better-defined bio-recognition, pharmacokinetic, biodegradation, and drug release profiles.[4] There is a considerable demand for biodegradable polymers used as vaccine adjuvants to stimulate the immune system and as carriers for vaccine delivery. The future of biodegradable polymers is highly demanding for vaccine delivery, owing to their biocompatibility and minimal toxicity, ensuring safety and therapeutic efficacy.

Certain diseases need a controlled release of drugs at the specific site to avoid the adverse effect on the healthy cells. Drug delivery carriers obtained from natural and synthetic polymers will be a boon for the pharmaceutical industries to deliver magic possible choice for many new drug delivery systems.

The prospects of the polymeric drug delivery systems with a combination of natural and synthetic polymers will significantly impact the design and development of new and intelligent drug delivery systems for more controlled and targeted drug applications.


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2Tiwari G, Tiwari R, Sriwastawa B, Bhati L, Pandey S, Pandey P, et al. Drug delivery systems: An updated review. Int J Pharm Investig 2012;2:2-11.
3Basu A, Kunduru KR, Doppalapudi S, Domb AJ, Khan W. Poly (lactic acid) based hydrogels. Adv Drug Deliv Rev 2016;107:192-205.
4Haider M, Megeed Z, Ghandehari H. Genetically engineered polymers: Status and prospects for controlled release. J Control Release 2004;95:1-26.