Clinically, cancer drug resistance to chemotherapy, targeted therapy or immunotherapy remains the main impediment towards curative cancer therapy, which leads directly to treatment failure along with extended hospital stays, increased medical costs and high mortality. Therefore, increasing attention has been paid to nanotechnology-based delivery systems for overcoming drug resistance in cancer. In this respect, novel tumor-targeting nanomedicines offer fairly effective therapeutic strategies for surmounting the various limitations of chemotherapy, targeted therapy and immunotherapy, enabling more precise cancer treatment, more convenient monitoring of treatment agents, as well as surmounting cancer drug resistance, including multidrug resistance (MDR). Nanotechnology-based delivery systems, including liposomes, polymer micelles, nanoparticles (NPs), and DNA nanostructures, enable a large number of properly designed therapeutic nanomedicines. In this paper, we review the different mechanisms of cancer drug resistance to chemotherapy, targeted therapy and immunotherapy, and discuss the latest developments in nanomedicines for overcoming cancer drug resistance.
Keywords: chemotherapy; drug resistance; immunotherapy; nanomedicine; nanotechnology; targeted therapy.