Journal of Pharmaceutical Investigation

, Volume 48, Issue 1, pp 61–75 | Cite as

Polymeric nanomedicines for poorly soluble drugs in oral delivery systems: an update

  • Xiangyu Ma
  • Robert O. WilliamsIIIEmail author


The field of nanomedicine offers promising new drug delivery systems with enhanced properties. The literature has reported on the development of various nanomedicines that are more beneficial than conventional drug delivery systems. These increased benefits are due to their size, morphology, and surface properties. Nanomedicines include different forms of drug-containing polymeric nanoparticles. These nanoparticles have been investigated to improve the bioavailability, solubility, permeability, stability, and therapeutic efficacy of drugs. The oral route of administration has gained interest because of its ease of delivery and its convenience, which results in higher compliance. However, the low solubility of many drugs hinders their successful development into dosage forms for oral administration. In addition, biological barriers hinder the absorption of drugs into systematic circulation, resulting in low therapeutic efficacy. Polymeric nanoparticle drug delivery systems have been reported as a method for overcoming low drug solubility and overcoming biological barriers to absorption. This review discusses the biological barriers to oral delivery as well as the challenges and benefits of oral delivery. This review also examines the characteristics of drug-containing polymeric nanomedicines as drug delivery systems and the various applications of these systems.


Polymeric Nanomedicine Biological barrier Micelles Biodegradable pH sensitive 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of the interest

Authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© The Korean Society of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Technology 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Molecular Pharmaceutics and Drug Delivery Austin, College of PharmacyThe University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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