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Critical Reviews™ in Therapeutic Drug Carrier Systems

Impact factor: 5.367

ISSN Print: 0743-4863
ISSN Online: 2162-660X

Critical Reviews™ in Therapeutic Drug Carrier Systems

DOI: 10.1615/CritRevTherDrugCarrierSyst.v28.i3.20
pages 255-292

Carbohydrate Molecules: An Expanding Horizon in Drug Delivery and Biomedicine

Raj Kumar Shukla
Sun Pharma Industries Ltd., Sun Pharma Advance Research Centre, Tandalja-390020, Baroda-Gujrat, India
Akanksha Tiwari
Department of Pharmaceutics, Baroda College of Pharmacy, Parul Trust, Limbda, Waghodia-391760, Baroda- Gujrat


This review presents successful applications of carbohydrate molecules in drug delivery, vaccine development, cancer, HIV and various other diseases based on advances in glycobiology and glycochemistry. Carbohydrate-mediated delivery could be site specific/cell specific. Carbohydrate-based delivery system has been successfully utilized for the delivery of macromolecular drugs, antigen, and potential therapeutic drug candidates. Lectin, the high affinity carbohydrate-binding nonimmune glycoproteins has specific and noncovalent binding sites for defined carbohydrates. Endogenous surface lectins of cancer cells participate in the regulation of tumor cell growth. The oligosaccharides constitute potential recognition sites for carbohydrate-mediated interactions between cells and drug carriers bearing suitable site directing molecules. The recognition of carbohydrate immunodeterminants has created great attention in the development of carbohydrate-based vaccines. Peptide mimotopes provide a strategy to augment human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1) specific carbohydrate reactive immune responses. Experimental cancer and HIV vaccines are being developed in attempts to overcome weak immunological responses to carbohydrate-rich surface antigens using carriers, adjuvants, and novel carbohydrate antigen constructs. Current carbohydrate-based vaccines are used for prostate cancer, typhus, pneumonia, and meningitis; vaccines for malaria, anthrax, and leishmaniasis are under development. This article discusses the current research involved in the role of carbohydrate molecules in targeted controlled drug delivery, immunology, and vaccine development.