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Keywords:

  • drug delivery;
  • platinum;
  • prodrugs;
  • targeting

Abstract

The approved platinum(II)-based anticancer agents cisplatin, carboplatin and oxaliplatin are widely utilised in the clinic, although with numerous disadvantages. With the aim of circumventing unwanted side-effects, a great deal of research is being conducted in the areas of cancer-specific targeting, drug administration and drug delivery. The targeting of platinum complexes to cancerous tissues can be achieved by the attachment of small molecules with biological significance. In addition, the administration of platinum complexes in the form of platinum(IV) allows for intracellular reduction to release the active form of the drug, cisplatin. Drug delivery includes such technologies as liposomes, dendrimers, polymers and nanotubes, with all showing promise for the delivery of platinum compounds. In this paper we highlight some of the recent advances in the field of platinum chemotherapeutics, with a focus on the technologies that attempt to utilise the cytotoxic nature of cisplatin, whilst improving drug targeting to reduce side-effects.