Clinical failure of nanoparticles in cancer: Mimicking nature’s solutions

Hernández-Camarero, P.; Amezcua-Hernández, V.; Jiménez, G.; Garcia, M.A.; Marchal, J.A.; Perán, M.

Revista: Nanomedicine

ISSN: 1748-6963

Año de publicación: 2020

Volumen: 15

Número: 23

Páginas: 2311-2324

DOI: 10.2217/NNM-2020-0234


The use of nanotechnology has become a promising approach in the treatment of cancer. However, most intravenously injected nanoparticles (NPs) do not effectively reach the tumor mass due to the biological barriers in the body. In an attempt to unify clinical criteria and basic research, we have collected the latest studies and described novel alternatives such as the use of NPs covered with cell membranes to increase NP delivery efficiency. Furthermore, we focus on the prospect of using the cell’s natural messengers, exosomes, as vehicles to transport anti-cancer agents and we discuss the technical complications involved. Finally, we propose novel approaches to produce engineered exosomes which may overcome such technical limitations in order to achieve a proper anti-cancer nanotherapy.