Enzyme-nanoparticle conjugates for biomedical applications.
ABSTRACT Enzymes hold a great promise as therapeutic agents because of their unique specificity and high level of activity. Yet, clinically important enzyme drugs are for less common than conventional low molecular weight drugs due to a number of disadvantages. Most important among these are poor stability, potential immunogenicity, and potential systemic toxicity. Recent developments in synthesis and characterization of nanoparticles and exciting novel properties of some classes of nanomaterials have boosted interest in the potential use of nanoparticles as carriers of enzyme drugs. In certain cases, use of enzymes attached to nanoparticles can help to overcome some of the above problems and improve the prospects of clinical applications of enzyme drugs. Here, we review recent data on the use of nanoparticles as carriers for several clinically important enzyme drugs and discuss advantages and potential limitations of such constructs. While promising preliminary results were obtained with regard to their performance in vitro and in some animal models, further investigations and clinical trials, as well as addressing regulatory issues, are warranted to make these delivery systems suitable for clinical applications.