General considerations regarding the in vitro and in vivo properties of block copolymer micelle products and their evaluation

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Block copolymer micelles are nanoparticles formed from block copolymers that comprise a hydrophilic polymer such as poly(ethylene glycol) and a poorly soluble polymer such as poly(amino acids). The design of block copolymer micelles is intended to regulate the in vivo pharmacokinetics, stability, and distribution profiles of an entrapped or block copolymer-linked active substance. Several block copolymer micelle products are currently undergoing clinical development; however, a major challenge in the development and evaluation of such products is identification of the physicochemical properties that affect the properties of the drug product in vivo. Here we review the overall in vitro and in vivo characteristics of block copolymer micelle products with a focus on the products currently under clinical investigation. We present examples of methods suitable for the evaluation of the physicochemical properties, non-clinical pharmacokinetics, and safety of block copolymer micelle products.

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