Microfluidics in nanoparticle drug delivery; From synthesis to pre-clinical screening

Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2018 Mar 15;128:29-53. doi: 10.1016/j.addr.2018.04.001. Epub 2018 Apr 5.


Microfluidic technologies employ nano and microscale fabrication techniques to develop highly controllable and reproducible fluidic microenvironments. Utilizing microfluidics, lead compounds can be produced with the controlled physicochemical properties, characterized in a high-throughput fashion, and evaluated in in vitro biomimetic models of human organs; organ-on-a-chip. As a step forward from conventional in vitro culture methods, microfluidics shows promise in effective preclinical testing of nanoparticle-based drug delivery. This review presents a curated selection of state-of-the-art microfluidic platforms focusing on the fabrication, characterization, and assessment of nanoparticles for drug delivery applications. We also discuss the current challenges and future prospects of nanoparticle drug delivery development using microfluidics.

Keywords: 3D culture; Drug delivery; Microfluidics; Nanomedicine; Nanotechnology; Organ-on-a-chip.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Drug Delivery Systems / instrumentation*
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
  • Humans
  • Microfluidic Analytical Techniques* / instrumentation
  • Nanoparticles / administration & dosage*
  • Particle Size
  • Surface Properties