Department of Pharmaceutical Technology and Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy and Nutrition, Universidad de Navarra, C/Irunlarrea 1, 31008 Pamplona, Spain; Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria de Navarra, IdiSNA, C/Irunlarrea 3, 31008 Pamplona, Spain. Electronic address: [Email]
Current therapies for Parkinson's disease are symptomatic and unable to regenerate the brain tissue. In recent years, the therapeutic potential of a wide variety of neuroprotective and neuroregenerative molecules such as neurotrophic factors, antioxidants and RNA-based therapeutics has been explored. However, drug delivery to the brain is still a challenge and the therapeutic efficacy of many drugs is limited. In the last decade, micro- and nanoparticles have proved to be powerful tools for the administration of these molecules to the brain, enabling the development of new strategies against Parkinson's disease. The list of encapsulated drugs and the nature of the particles used is long, and numerous studies have been carried out supporting their efficacy in treating this pathology. This review aims to give an overview of the latest advances and emerging frontiers in micro- and nanomedical approaches for repairing dopaminergic neurons. Special emphasis will be placed on offering a new perspective to link these advances with the most relevant clinical trials and with the real possibility of transferring micro- and nanoformulations to industrial scale-up processes. This review is intended as a contribution towards facing the challenges that still exist in the clinical translation of micro- and nanotechnologies to administer therapeutic agents in Parkinson's disease.