Nanogels are hydrogels having size in nanoregime, which is composed of cross-linked polymer networks. The advantages of nanogels include stimuli-responsive nature, easy drug loading, and higher drug-loading capacity, physical stability, versatility in design, stability of entrapped drug, and controlled release of the anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, protein, peptide and anticancer drugs. Stimuli-responsive nature of nanogel is of particular importance in anticancer and anti-inflammatory drug delivery, as cancer and inflammation are associated with acidic pH, heat generation, and change in ionic content. Nanogels composed of muco-adhesive polymers provide prolonged residence time and increase the ocular availability of loaded drugs. By forming suitably sized complex with proteins or by acting as artificial chaperones, they thus help to keep the proteins and enzymes in proper confirmation necessary for exerting biological activity; nanogels can increase the stability and activity of protein/peptide drugs. Better drug penetrations achieved by prolonged contact with skin contribute much in transdermal drug delivery. When it comes to cancer drug delivery, the presence of multiple interactive functional groups in nanogels different targeting agents can be conjugated for delivery of the selective drugs. This review focuses on applications of nanogels in cancer drug delivery and imaging, anti-inflammatory, anti-psoriatic, transdermal, ocular and protein/peptide drug delivery and therapy.
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A. J. Sivaram, Rajitha Panonnummal, Maya, S., Dr. Jayakumar Rangasamy, and Dr. Sabitha M., “Nanogels for Delivery, Imaging and Therapy”, Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Nanomedicine and Nanobiotechnology, 2015.