Dendrimers in Medicine: Therapeutic Concepts and Pharmaceutical Challenges

Lin Ping Wu, Mario Ficker, Jørn B. Christensen, Panagiotis N. Trohopoulos, Seyed Moein Moghimi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

177 Scopus citations


Dendrimers are three-dimensional macromolecular structures originating from a central core molecule and surrounded by successive addition of branching layers (generation). These structures exhibit a high degree of molecular uniformity, narrow molecular weight distribution, tunable size and shape characteristics, as well as multivalency. Collectively, these physicochemical characteristics together with advancements in design of biodegradable backbones have conferred many applications to dendrimers in formulation science and nanopharmaceutical developments. These have included the use of dendrimers as pro-drugs and vehicles for solubilization, encapsulation, complexation, delivery, and site-specific targeting of small-molecule drugs, biopharmaceuticals, and contrast agents. We briefly review these advances, paying particular attention to attributes that make dendrimers versatile for drug formulation as well as challenging issues surrounding the future development of dendrimer-based medicines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1198-1211
Number of pages14
JournalBioconjugate chemistry
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 15 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Organic Chemistry


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