What it is: Artificially made microscopic drug delivery device consisting of a fatty membrane over a hollow "bubble."
What make it groundbreaking: This class of drug delivery device is not new. However, recent years have seen such big improvements in these drug-carrying "bubbles" that they might as well be considered as new.
Who's working on them:
- ThermoDox, by drug developer Celsion, was recently granted fast-track status by the FDA for treatment of primary liver cancer. Celsion's technology involves low heat-activated liposomes, which the company says enables delivery of drugs directly to cancer sites. They call them lysolipid thermally sensitive liposomes (LTSL), and they're being billed by Celsion as "the first in a new generation of liposomes." Report
- Marina Biotech recently acquired the rights to "Smarticles" technology from Germany's Novosom in exchange for $5 million in common stock. "Smarticles," involve liposomes that can cross cell membranes to deliver to the target and engage the RNA interference pathway. They can also change its surface electric charge to drop off its payload. Report