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Journal of Drug Delivery
Volume 2013, Article ID 165981, 9 pages
Review Article

Lipid-Based Nanoparticles in Cancer Diagnosis and Therapy

1Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, King's College London, Franklin-Wilkins Building, Waterloo Campus, 150 Stamford Street, London SE1 9NH, UK
2GlobalAcorn Ltd., London, UK

Received 7 December 2012; Revised 7 May 2013; Accepted 24 May 2013

Academic Editor: Vasso Apostolopoulos

Copyright © 2013 Andrew D. Miller. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Today, researchers are constantly developing new nanomaterials, nanodevices, and nanoparticles to meet unmet needs in the delivery of therapeutic agents and imaging agents for cancer therapy and diagnosis, respectively. Of particular interest here are lipid-based nanoparticles (LNPs) that are genuine particles (approximately 100 nm in dimension) assembled from varieties of lipid and other chemical components that act collectively to overcome biological barriers (biobarriers), in order for LNPs to preferentially accumulate in or around disease-target cells for the functional delivery of therapeutic agents for treatment or of imaging agents for diagnosis. The capabilities of these LNPs will clearly vary depending on functional requirements, but the nanoscale allows for an impressive level of diversity in capabilities to enable corresponding LNPs to address an equally diverse range of functional requirements. Accordingly, LNPs should be considered appropriate vehicles to provide an integrated, personalized approach to cancer diagnosis and therapy in future cancer disease management.