Polymer-drug conjugates as inhalable drug delivery systems: A review

Nirmal Marasini, Shadabul Haque, Lisa M. Kaminskas

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

77 Citations (Scopus)


Accelerating interest by the pharmaceutical industry in the identification and development of less invasive routes of nanomedicine administration, coupled with defined efforts to improve the treatment of respiratory diseases through inhaled drug administration has fuelled growing interests in inhalable polymer-drug conjugates. Polymer-drug conjugates can alter the pharmacokinetic profile of the loaded drug after inhaled administration and enable the controlled and sustained exposure of the lungs to drugs when compared to the inhaled or oral administration of the drug alone. However, the major concern with the use of inhalable polymer-drug conjugates is their biocompatibility and long-term safety in the lungs, which is closely linked to lung retention times. A detailed understanding about the pharmacokinetics, lung disposition, clearance and safety of inhaled polymer-drug conjugates with significant translational potential is therefore required. This review therefore provides a comprehensive summary of the latest developments for several types of polymer-drug conjugates that are currently being explored as inhalable drug delivery systems. Finally, the current status and future perspective of the polymer-drug conjugates is also discussed with a focus on current knowledge gaps.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-29
Number of pages12
JournalCurrent Opinion in Colloid and Interface Science
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2017


  • Drug delivery
  • Inhalation
  • lung & pulmonary delivery
  • pharmacokinetics
  • Polymer-drug conjugates

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