Potential use of human serum albumin as a drug delivery systems
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Human serum albumin has recently emerged as a versatile carrier for therapeutic agents against diabetes, cancer and infectious diseases. Market approved products include fatty acid derivatives of human insulin or the glucagon-like-1 peptide (Levemir®) for the treatment of diabetes, a long-acting injectable human interferon alpha2b fusion protein (Albuferon®) for the potential treatment of hepatitis C virus infections, and the taxol albumin nanoparticle Abraxane® for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer, advanced non-small cell lung cancer and advanced pancreatic cancer. In addition, an increasing number of albumin-based drugs are currently in clinical trials. These include an antibody fusion protein for treating HER2/neu positive breast cancer, and a recombinant fusion protein linking factor IX with albumin for the Prophylaxis of hemophilia B. In the preclinical setting, next generation approaches include albumin binding bioactive gases (bio-Gas) such as nitric oxide or hydrogen sulfide (S-Nitrosated Albumin analogs and Albumin Persulfide) for treating ischemic/reperfusion injury, cancer and bacterial infections. This review provides an overview of the expanding field of preclinical and clinical applications and developments that use albumin as a carrier of drug delivery systems.
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