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Nanomaterials (Basel)




The novel and unique design of self-assembled micro and nanostructures can be tailored and controlled through the deep understanding of the self-assembly behavior of amphiphilic molecules. The most commonly known amphiphilic molecules are surfactants, phospholipids, and block copolymers. These molecules present a dual attraction in aqueous solutions that lead to the formation of structures like micelles, hydrogels, and liposomes. These structures can respond to external stimuli and can be further modified making them ideal for specific, targeted medical needs and localized drug delivery treatments. Biodegradability, biocompatibility, drug protection, drug bioavailability, and improved patient compliance are among the most important benefits of these self-assembled structures for drug delivery purposes. Furthermore, there are numerous FDA-approved biomaterials with self-assembling properties that can help shorten the approval pathway of efficient platforms, allowing them to reach the therapeutic market faster. This review focuses on providing a thorough description of the current use of self-assembled micelles, hydrogels, and vesicles (polymersomes/liposomes) for the extended and controlled release of therapeutics, with relevant medical applications. FDA-approved polymers, as well as clinically and commercially available nanoplatforms, are described throughout the paper.


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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.