Chitosan-based advanced materials for docetaxel and paclitaxel delivery: Recent advances and future directions in cancer theranostics

Milad Ashrafizadeh, Zahra Ahmadi, Neda Mohamadi, Ali Zarrabi, Sara Abasi, Gholamreza Dehghannoudeh, Rosette N. Tamaddondoust, Hashem Khanbabaei, Reza Mohammadinejad*, Vijay Kumar Thakur

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

93 Citations (Scopus)


Paclitaxel (PTX) and docetaxel (DTX) are key members of taxanes with high anti-tumor activity against various cancer cells. These chemotherapeutic agents suffer from a number of drawbacks and it seems that low solubility in water is the most important one. Although much effort has been made in improving the bioavailability of PTX and DTX, the low bioavailability and minimal accumulation at tumor sites are still the challenges faced in PTX and DTX therapy. As a consequence, bio-based nanoparticles (NPs) have attracted much attention due to unique properties. Among them, chitosan (CS) is of interest due to its great biocompatibility. CS is a positively charged polysaccharide with the capability of interaction with negatively charged biomolecules. Besides, it can be processed into the sheet, micro/nano-particles, scaffold, and is dissolvable in mildly acidic pH similar to the pH of the tumor microenvironment. Keeping in mind the different applications of CS in the preparation of nanocarriers for delivery of PTX and DTX, in the present review, we demonstrate that how CS functionalized-nanocarriers and CS modification can be beneficial in enhancing the bioavailability of PTX and DTX, targeted delivery at tumor site, image-guided delivery and co-delivery with other anti-tumor drugs or genes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-300
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Biological Macromolecules
Early online date20 Dec 2019
Publication statusPrint publication - 15 Feb 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2019 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


  • Chemotherapy
  • Chitosan
  • Delivery
  • Docetaxel
  • Nanoparticles
  • Paclitaxel


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