Biomedical Applications of Biopolymers in Airway Disease
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School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences, Arizona State University, Glendale AZ, USA
Department of Chemistry, Laboratory of Biochemistry, Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, Greece
Corresponding author
Anastasia A. Pantazaki   

Department of Chemistry, Laboratory of Biochemistry, Aristotle University, GR-54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
Pneumon 2018;31(1):24-34
Airway disease is a group of devastating conditions the prevalence of which has increased substantially in past decades despite the advanced therapeutic interventions. The term describes several events that lead to lung tissue scarring, poor lung circulation, and airway obstruction that prevent the lungs from working properly. Biodegradable polymers have emerged as significant advancements of modern medicine. In this review, we sought to discuss the clinical potential of biopolymers in airway disease. First, we describe succinctly the biosynthesis of biomaterials, their use in lung tissue scaffolding, and their use as substrates for in vitro culture of respiratory epithelial cells. We then discuss their utilization as bio-absorbable nanostructured drug delivery systems that combat lung cancer and prevent metastasis by targeting lung cancer stem-like cells. Additionally, we review the use of biopolymers as substitutes of pulmonary surfactant in acute respiratory distress syndrome. We bring forward the use of biopolymers as surgical implants in lung blood vessels. Also, the encapsulation of plasmids or antibiotics in polymer-based nanoparticles is discussed for pulmonary gene therapy in the context of modulating the function of alveolar macrophages, dendritic cells and adaptive immune responses. The use of nanoparticles for nasal, bronchial and lung vaccine administration is also reviewed as a novel method to induce favorable immune responses at the respiratory mucosa with the potential to induce systemic immunity. This review summarizes the most recent advances in the field over the past decade, specifically highlighting new and interesting applications in airway disease.
We would like to thank the Arizona State University and Aristotle University of Thessaloniki for granting us access to the scientific literature listed in the present review.
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
This work was supported by School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences, Arizona State University and by the Department of Chemistry of Aristotle University.
This review article was evaluated and approved by the Arizona State University and Aristotle University
GTN reviewed the relevant literature, designed the structure of the review article, integrated and synthesized published data, contributed to manuscript writing, prepared figures. AAP, contributed to manuscript writing, prepared figures, contributed to manuscript writing, and provided oversight to the entire review progress.
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