Lipid-based nanoparticles in the clinic and clinical trials: From cancer nanomedicine to COVID-19 vaccines

Thai Thanh Hoang Thi, Estelle J.A. Suys, Jung Seok Lee, Dai Hai Nguyen, Ki Dong Park, Nghia P. Truong

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


COVID-19 vaccines have been developed with unprecedented speed which would not have been possible without decades of fundamental research on delivery nanotechnology. Lipid-based nanoparticles have played a pivotal role in the successes of COVID-19 vaccines and many other nanomedicines, such as Doxil® and Onpattro®, and have therefore been considered as the frontrunner in nanoscale drug delivery systems. In this review, we aim to highlight the progress in the development of these lipid nanoparticles for various applications, ranging from cancer nanomedicines to COVID-19 vaccines. The lipid-based nanoparticles discussed in this review are liposomes, niosomes, transfersomes, solid lipid nanoparticles, and nanostructured lipid carriers. We particularly focus on the innovations that have obtained regulatory approval or that are in clinical trials. We also discuss the physicochemical properties required for specific applications, highlight the differences in requirements for the delivery of different cargos, and introduce current challenges that need further development. This review serves as a useful guideline for designing new lipid nanoparticles for both preventative and therapeutic vaccines including immunotherapies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number359
Number of pages29
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 8 Apr 2021


  • COVID-19
  • Immunotherapy
  • Lipid nanoparticles
  • Liposomes
  • Vaccines

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