Chapter 13

Nanodrugs: Magic Bullets in Cancer Chemotherapy

Kishwar Saleem, Waseem A. Wani, Ashanul Haque, Archana Milhotra and Imran Ali

Abstract

Cancer is a disease which brings about a huge sense of terror. It has therefore, been a threat to human beings globally. Many organic and metallo chemotherapeutics are currently available in the market for the treatment of different sorts of cancers, but, still there is no drug which can curb this disease at late stages completely and worse, most drugs exhibit severe side effects. The choice for cancer treatment seems to be nanodrugs, which are effective at much lower concentrations and with much less side effects. Nanodrugs are the magic bullets, designed to be selective for tumor tissue and to act only on cancer cells. Nanodrugs are macromolecules or nanoparticles that function as targeted carrier systems to deliver active anticancer drug exclusively at the site of cancer. The well known anticancer chemotherapeutics cisplatin, carboplatin, 5-fluorouracil, bleomycin, paclitaxel, doxorubicin, vinblastin and topotecan etc., but also novel drugs including nucleic acids and proteins can be incorporated into these delivery systems. Drugs become active only at the site of cancer cells. A consideration of the unique properties of nanodrugs seems to bring about a revolution in cancer treatment which is the urgent need of time. The present chapter describes the huge diversity of nanodrugs and highlights the few principles of their mechanisms. Moreover, the superiority of nano anticancer modalities in comparison to the conventional chemotherapeutic anticancer drugs will be discussed. Recent patents in the field have been discussed under different sections of the chapter. Recent rocketing developments in the field will be introduced and emphasis has been laid on future perspectives.

Total Pages: 437-494 (58)

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