Int. J. Dev. Biol. 66: 137 - 154 (2022)
doi: 10.1387/ijdb.210108sa
© UPV/EHU Press

Development of growth factor-incorporating liposomes for integration into scaffolds as a method to improve tissue regeneration

Evangelos Natsaridis1,2, Panagiota Mouzoura1, Foteini Gkartziou2, Antonia Marazioti1, Sophia G. Antimisiaris1,2,*

1Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Technology, Dept. of Pharmacy, School of Health Sciences, University of Patras, Rio Patras, Greece, 2Institute of Chemical Engineering Sciences, Foundation for Research and Technology Hellas (FORTH/ICE-HT), Rio Patras, Greece

ABSTRACT This review is an update with regard to the efforts to develop liposomal carriers for growth factor delivery. It is well known that growth factors have the potential to enhance/accelerate tissue regeneration; however, their poor stability, which results in rapid loss of their activity, together with their rapid clearance from defected tissues (when applied as free molecules) is a serious drawback for their use; their highly hydrophilic nature and low capability to permeate through biological barriers (cell membranes) are additional factors that limit their applicability. In recent years, the advantages of liposomal drug delivery systems have motivated efforts to deliver growth factors (GFs) in liposomal form. Herein, after briefly introducing the basic structural characteristics of liposome types and their advantages when used as drug carriers, as well as the basic problems encountered when GFs are applied for tissue regeneration, we focus on recent reports on the development and potential regenerative effects of liposomal GFs, towards defects of various tissues. The methodologies used for incorporation, attachment or immobilization of liposomal GFs in order to sustain their retention at the defected tissues are also highlighted.

Keywords:

liposomes, growth factors, delivery, tissue, regeneration, defects, neurodegeneration, liver, disease, targeting, gene therapy

*Corresponding author e-mail: santimis@upatras.gr