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Journal of Pharmaceutics
Volume 2013, Article ID 103527, 19 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/103527
Review Article

Microencapsulation for the Therapeutic Delivery of Drugs, Live Mammalian and Bacterial Cells, and Other Biopharmaceutics: Current Status and Future Directions

1Biomedical Technology and Cell Therapy Research Laboratory, Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Physiology and Artificial Cells and Organs Research Center, Faculty of Medicine, McGill University, 3775 University Street, Montreal, QC, Canada H3A 2B4
2Faculty of Dentistry, McGill University, 3775 University Street, Montreal, QC, Canada H3A 2B4
3Department of Experimental Medicine, McGill University, 3775 University Street, Montreal, QC, Canada H3A 2B4

Received 23 July 2012; Accepted 15 October 2012

Academic Editor: Anna Wesolowska

Copyright © 2012 Catherine Tomaro-Duchesneau et al. 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.

Abstract

Microencapsulation is a technology that has shown significant promise in biotherapeutics, and other applications. It has been proven useful in the immobilization of drugs, live mammalian and bacterial cells and other cells, and other biopharmaceutics molecules, as it can provide material structuration, protection of the enclosed product, and controlled release of the encapsulated contents, all of which can ensure efficient and safe therapeutic effects. This paper is a comprehensive review of microencapsulation and its latest developments in the field. It provides a comprehensive overview of the technology and primary goals of microencapsulation and discusses various processes and techniques involved in microencapsulation including physical, chemical, physicochemical, and other methods involved. It also summarizes the state-of-the-art successes of microencapsulation, specifically with regard to the encapsulation of microorganisms, mammalian cells, drugs, and other biopharmaceutics in various diseases. The limitations and future directions of microencapsulation technologies are also discussed.