Herein recent progress in developing red blood cell (RBC)-inspired delivery systems is reviewed, with an emphasis on how our growing understanding of fundamental biological properties of natural RBCs has been applied in the design and engineering of these delivery systems. Specifically, progress achieved in developing carrier RBCs, a class of delivery vehicles engineered by directly loading natural RBCs with therapeutic agents, will be reviewed. Then alternative approaches to engineering synthetic vehicles through mimicking the mechanobiological and chemico-biological properties of natural RBCs will be considered. The synthesis and application of RBC membrane-derived vesicles, of which the natural RBC membranes are collected and directly utilized to prepare drug carriers, will then be discussed. Finally, a recent approach in engineering RBC membrane-camouflaged nanoparticle systems that combine advantages of natural RBCs and synthetic biomaterials will be highlighted. These developments indicate that RBC-inspired delivery systems will result in next-generation nanomedicine with extensive medical applications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biomedical Engineering
- Pharmaceutical Science