Application of Cell Penetrating Peptides in Molecular Medicine
Posted by cathymil on March 31st, 2020
Molecular medicine is a new field that was initially formed back in 1949 when a group of scholars co-authored the seminal paper- “Sickle Cell Anemia, a Molecular Disease”. Rather than focusing on patients and their organs as before, molecular medicine now combines contemporary medical studies with biochemistry and begins to focus more on molecular structures and mechanisms, identify fundamental genetic errors of disease, and design new methods for cure on the molecular level.
During the process of applying molecular medicine using techniques such as gene therapy, molecular structural analysis, cell penetrating peptides could be an attractive pharmaceutical and biochemical tool to carry therapeutic agents to the designated place.
Challenges facing molecular therapeutics
The unmet medical needs can be partially attributed to the existence of cell membrane and tissue barriers, which prevent therapeutic agent from reaching their specific intracellular targets. This presents a huge problem as it would be pointless if agent can’t arrive at the right place. To address this problem, some novel peptides are introduced to facilitate the cellular penetration of potential drugs and help them exert their effects.
Role of cell penetrating peptides
Conjugating therapeutics were widely used to this end, and cell penetrating peptides are probably the most welcome ones as a result of their commendable performance in enhancing cellular internalization and therapeutic efficacy. Theoretically, CPPs could be used for the delivery of various types of therapeutic molecules, such as antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective agents.
Considerable preclinical evaluations have been carried out in animal models in order to explore the feasibility of CPP-derived therapeutics. Some of these peptides have entered into Phase I, Phase II, and, in some cases, even Phase III clinical trials. For many years, these investigations have shown positive outcomes for the development of some innovative therapies that could direct agent to intracellular targets. In spite of the fact that the mechanism of cellular uptake remains unclear, the role of CPPs as an attractive pharmaceutical and biochemical tool is undeniable.
Also See: Molecular Medicine, Cell Penetrating, Penetrating Peptides, Intracellular Targets, Peptides, Molecular, Cell
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