Nanomaterial based drug delivery systems for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases
With an aging population that has been increasing in recent years, the need for the development of therapeutic approaches for treatment of neurodegenerative disorders (ND) has increased. ND, which are characterized by the progressive loss of the structure or function of neurons, are often associated with neuronal death. In spite of screening numerous drugs, currently there is no specific treatment that can cure these diseases or slow down their progression. Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), frontotemporal dementia, Huntington's disease, and prion diseases belong to ND which affect enormous numbers of people globally. There are some main possible reasons for failure in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases such as limitations introduced by the Blood–Brain Barrier (BBB), the Blood–Cerebrospinal Fluid Barrier (BCFB) and P-glycoproteins. Current advances in nanotechnology present opportunities to overcome the mentioned limitations by using nanotechnology and designing nanomaterials improving the delivery of active drug candidates. Some of the basic and developing strategies to overcome drug delivery impediments are the local delivery of drugs, receptor-mediated transcytosis, physicochemical disruption of the BBB, cell-penetrating peptides and magnetic disruption. Recently, the application of nanoparticles has been developed to improve the efficiency of drug delivery. Nanoengineered particles as nanodrugs possess the capacity to cross the BBB and also show decreased invasiveness. Examples include inorganic, magnetic, polymeric and carbonic nanoparticles that have been developed to improve drug delivery efficiency. Despite numerous papers published in this filed, there are some unsolved issues that need to be addressed for successful treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. These are discussed herein.