Nanotechnology in the Treatment of Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Giron F1, Pastó A2, Tasciotti E3,4, Abraham BP3,4. Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2019 Sep 27. pii: izz205. doi: 10.1093/ibd/izz205. [Epub ahead of print]


Author information

Universidad Católica de Honduras, San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

Istituto Oncologico Veneto-IRCCS, Padova, Italy.

Underwood Center for Digestive Disorders, Houston Methodist Hospital, Houston, Texas.

Houston Methodist Research Institute, Houston Methodist Hospital, Houston, Texas.


Due to the lack of cure for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and failure of current medical therapies in many patients with IBD, a need exists in finding novel ways to treat inflammation with a high benefit and the lowest risk possible. With current medical therapies, adverse events or risks of cancer/lymphoma and infections prevent patients-and sometimes providers-in using effective therapies for treatment. Some patients develop systemic side effects that preclude them from continuing a therapy that may have been efficacious, or in other cases, current medical therapies are not adequate to control disease. Nanotechnology is an emerging field where particles, in the size of nanometers, can be used to deliver medications directly to the area of inflammation thus avoiding drug-associated systemic side effects. When using nanoparticles (NPs), only a small amount of the drug is needed, and it can be delivered directly to the inflamed site without exposure to the rest of the body. Here we review conventional and unconventional therapies applied in the treatment of IBD underlying how the introduction of NPs has improved their safety and efficacy.

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