Current article: Recent Updates on Oral and Dermal Film-based Formulations and their Applications

Author(s): Saily ShindeMihir Ghonge, and Harsha Kathpalia*


On the one hand, oral formulations are susceptible to problems, including instability accompanied by erratic absorption throughout the gastrointestinal tract, first-pass metabolism, and patient-related and pathological difficulties in consumption. On the other hand, the world has been observing a shift from conventional dermal formulations to more cosmetically attractive ones. Amid all these, polymeric films and film-forming systems have emerged as promising candidates for addressing the above problems. Oral films have been studied for their potential applications in immediate and sustained-release formulations and have markedly shown increased plasma concentrations of drugs that otherwise undergo degradation in the gastrointestinal tract and the liver and have an obvious edge in treating pathologies of the oral cavity. At the same time, a variety of dermal film formulations have been developed and studied for treating wounds, skin infections and pathologies, corns and calluses, and managing pain. This review article attempts to cover significant findings in oral and dermal applications of these formulations under one umbrella and provide readers with a compilation of relevant research works and marketed formulations.

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Current article: Highlighting the Potential Role of Exosomes as the Targeted Nanotherapeutic Carrier in Metastatic Breast Cancer

Author(s): Alisha KheraHema K. AlajangiAkhil KhajuriaRavi P. Barnwal*Santosh Kumar* and Gurpal Singh*


Breast cancer, being the second most common type of cancer, is a leading cause of death in the female population. Of all the available treatments existing for breast cancer, exosomes appear as an important medium for the site targeted delivery of drugs. Exosomes, unlike all the other extracellular vesicles, play a vital role in the transport of numerous biomolecules throughout the body and can easily be detected because of the presence of specific biomarkers. Apart from playing a wide variety of roles in the progression of many diseases, they are also responsible for tumor progression and metastasis in breast cancer. Exosomes and related engineering strategies are being discussed as nano-carrier for the delivery of different drugs in the case of breast cancer. Overall, we have discussed in this review the role of exosomes in breast cancer and the engineering strategies being devised for making them an efficient drug delivery system.

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Podcast: Contribution of Pharmaceutical Care to Person-centered Health Care and the Safety of Pharmacotherapy for Hospitalized Older Individuals in Brazil: An Investigative Single-arm Intervention Trial

Author(s): Alan Maicon de Oliveira*Fabiana Rossi VaralloJoão Paulo Vilela RodriguesGuilherme José AguilarNereida Kilza da Costa Lima and Leonardo Régis Leira Pereira

Background: Adverse drug events (ADE) and medication errors (ME) provide large numbers of victims. Older people are more susceptible to these events, due to the continuing search for several chronic degenerative disease treatments. The Third Global Patient Safety Challenge announced the objective of reducing unnecessary polypharmacy, encouraging deprescription, and aiming to ensure the prescription of medications in an appropriate manner, based on the best evidence and taking into account the individual factors of people.

Objective: To evaluate whether Pharmaceutical Care (PC), when inserted in a geriatric ward and the context of person-centered health care, cooperates with the safety of pharmacotherapy in older individuals in Brazil.

Methods: This is an investigative, single-arm, preliminary study. Inclusion criteria: individuals aged ≥60 years and admitted to the geriatric ward between August 2019 to January 2020. The PC (with the practice of pharmacotherapeutic follow-up, medication reconciliation, and pharmacotherapy review) was made available to identify ADE and ME, as well as the associated factors and clinical outcomes, were analyzed.

Results: 60 participants were included. It was found that, on hospital admission, 93.3% of them were polymedicated and 86.7% had a history of using potentially inappropriate medications (PIM). ADE and ME were detected in 43 individuals (71.7%) and, in total, 115 incidents were identified, with drugs that act on the nervous system associated with them (31.9%). Acceptance of the PC’s recommendations reached the rate of 85.2%. Polypharmacy (p=0.03) and the presence of multiple diseases (p=0.03) had an effect on the presentation of ADE and ME. The number of medications in use decreased in the comparison between admission and hospital discharge (p<0.0001).

Conclusion: This investigative study indicated that ADE and ME are linked to the polypharmacy in use at the beginning of hospitalization. On the other hand, we showed that the PC (inserted in the multidisciplinary team) contributed to the deprescribing of medications at hospital discharge. Therefore, the PC can provide improvements in this scenario.

Trial Registration: Brazilian Registry of Clinical Trials (registration number: RBR-34f2px4).

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Open access article: Recent Progress in Sic Nanostructures as Anode Materials for Lithium- Ion Batteries

Author(s): Xiaohong FanDingrong DengYi Li* and Qi-Hui Wu*

Large volume variation during charge/discharge of silicon (Si) nanostructures applied as the anode electrodes for high energy lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) has been considered the most critical problem, inhibiting their commercial applications. Searching for alternative highperformance anodes for LIBs has been emphasized. Silicon carbide (SiC) nanomaterials, a wide bandgap semiconductor with excellent mechanical properties, have been investigated as anode electrode materials even as active materials, protective layers, or inactive buffer stuff. In this minireview, we briefly summarize the synthesis of SiC nanostructures, the application of SiC/C anode materials, and SiC/Si composite anodes in LIBs.

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Open access article: Formaldehyde Levels in Fabrics on the Ghanaian Market

Author(s):Patience Danquah Monnie*Rachel Amanfu and Modesta Efua Gavor

Background: Formaldehyde is a chemical used in several textile production processes, such as hardening of fibers and antimold finishing. However, it has varying effects on humans, such as irritation of the eyes, nose, throat, wheezing, chest pains and bronchitis. In the midst of COVID-19, individuals are using various fabrics for face mask production, which may be containing levels of formaldehyde that can negatively affect their health.

Methods: This study investigated formaldehyde levels in fabrics on the Ghanaian market to determine compliance to standards set by the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) with the aid of experimental procedures. Thirty-two (32) different brands of fabrics were selected for the investigation. Formaldehyde levels were determined using a spectrophotometer (DR6000). Data were analyzed using the Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) for Windows version 22. The mean performance attributes and the formaldehyde levels of the sampled fabrics were determined before and after washing. Inferential statistics (Analysis of Variance and Paired Samples t-test) at 0.05 alpha levels were used to determine significant differences between and among the groups involved.

Results: The fabric samples tested positive for formaldehyde before and after washing, with some exceeding the standard limits set by the GSA before washing. Significant differences existed between and among the samples with regard to formaldehyde levels as well as weight and weave types of the samples and formaldehyde levels.

Conclusion: Washing significantly reduced the formaldehyde levels in the fabrics. It is recommended that Ghana Standards Authority takes a further look at the fabrics on the Ghanaian market to ensure manufacturers comply with set standards and consumers are also advised to wash their clothes at least once before use to reduce the level of impact formaldehyde resin may have on them.

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Aims & Scope: Current Gene Therapy

Current Gene Therapy is a bi-monthly peer-reviewed journal aimed at academic and industrial scientists with an interest in major topics concerning basic research and clinical applications of gene and cell therapy of diseases. Cell therapy manuscripts can also include application in diseases when cells have been genetically modified. Current Gene Therapy publishes full-length/mini reviews and original research on the latest developments in gene transfer and gene expression analysis, vector development, cellular genetic engineering, animal models and human clinical applications of gene and cell therapy for the treatment of diseases.

Current Gene Therapy publishes reviews and original research containing experimental data on gene and cell therapy. The journal also includes manuscripts on technological advances, ethical and regulatory considerations of gene and cell therapy. Reviews should provide the reader with a comprehensive assessment of any area of experimental biology applied to molecular medicine that is not only of significance within a particular field of gene therapy and cell therapy but also of interest to investigators in other fields. Authors are encouraged to provide their own assessment and vision for future advances. Reviews are also welcome on late breaking discoveries on which substantial literature has not yet been amassed. Such reviews provide a forum for sharply focused topics of recent experimental investigations in gene therapy primarily to make these results accessible to both clinical and basic researchers. Manuscripts containing experimental data should be original data, not previously published.

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Current article: Mechanism of CAV and CAVIN Family Genes in Acute Lung Injury based on DeepGene

Author(s): Changsheng LiHexiao TangZetian YangZheng TangNitao ChengJingyu Huang* and Xuefeng Zhou*

Background: The fatality rate of acute lung injury (ALI) is as high as 40% to 60%. Although various factors, such as sepsis, trauma, pneumonia, burns, blood transfusion, cardiopulmonary bypass, and pancreatitis, can induce ALI, patients with these risk factors will eventually develop ALI. The rate of developing ALI is not high, and the outcomes of ALI patients vary, indicating that it is related to genetic differences between individuals. In a previous study, we found multiple functions of cavin-2 in lung function. In addition, many other studies have revealed that CAV1 is a critical regulator of lung injury. Due to the strong relationship between cavin-2 and CAV1, we suspect that cavin-2 is also associated with ALI. Furthermore, we are curious about the role of the CAV family and Cavin family genes in ALI.

Methods: To reveal the mechanism of CAV and CAVIN family genes in ALI, we propose Deepgene to predict whether CAV and CAVIN family genes are associated with ALI. This method constructs a gene interaction network and extracts gene expression in 84 tissues. We divided these features into two groups and used two network encoders to encode and learn the features.

Results: Compared with DNN, GBDT, RF and KNN, the AUC of Deepgene increased by 7.89%, 16.84%, 20.19% and 32.01%, respectively. The AUPR scores increased by 8.05%, 15.58%, 22.56% and 23.34%. DeepGENE shows that CAVIN-1, CAVIN-2, CAVIN-3 and CAV2 are related to ALI.

Conclusion: DeepGENE is a reliable method for identifying acute lung injury-related genes. Multiple CAV and CAVIN family genes are associated with acute lung injury-related genes through multiple pathways and gene functions.

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Current article: miRNA-1260b Promotes Breast Cancer Cell Migration and Invasion by Downregulating CCDC134

Author(s): Zhijian HuangShijian ZhenLiangzi JinJian ChenYuanyuan Han*Wen Lei* and Fuqing Zhang*

Background: Breast cancer (BRCA) is the most common type of cancer among women worldwide. MiR-1260b has been widely demonstrated to participate in multiple crucial biological functions of cancer tumorigenesis, but its functional effect and mechanism in human breast cancer have not been fully understood.

Methods: qRT-PCR was used to detect miR-1260b expression in 29 pairs of breast cancer tissues and normal adjacent tissues. Besides, the expression level of miR-1260b in BRCA cells was also further validated by qRT-PCR. miR-1260b played its role in the prognostic process by using Kaplan-Meier curves. In addition, miR-1260b knockdown and target gene CCDC134 overexpression model was constructed in cell line MDA-MB-231. Transwell migration and invasion assay was performed to analyze the effect of miR-1260b and CCDC134 on the biological function of BRCA cells. TargetScan and miRNAWalk were used to find possible target mRNAs. The relationship between CCDC134 and immune cell surface markers was analyzed using TIMER and database and the XIANTAO platform. GSEA analysis was used to identify possible CCDC134-associated molecular mechanisms and pathways.

Results: In the present study, miR-1260b expression was significantly upregulated in human breast cancer tissue and a panel of human breast cancer cell lines, while the secretory protein coiled-coil domain containing 134 (CCDC134) exhibited lower mRNA expression. High expression of miR-1260b was associated with poor overall survival among the patients by KM plot. Knockdown of miR-1260b significantly suppressed breast cancer cell migration and invasion and yielded the opposite result. In addition, overexpression of CCDC134 could inhibit breast cancer migration and invasion, and knockdown yielded the opposite result. There were significant positive correlations of CCDC134 with CD25 (IL2RA), CD80 and CD86. GSEA showed that miR-1260b could function through the MAPK pathway by downregulating CCDC134.

Conclusion: Collectively, these results suggested that miR-1260b might be an oncogene of breast cancer and might promote the migration and invasion of BRCA cells by down-regulating its target gene CCDC134 and activating MAPK signaling pathway as well as inhibiting immune function and causing immune escape in human breast cancer.

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Current article: Gene Therapy, A Potential Therapeutic Tool for Neurological and Neuropsychiatric Disorders: Applications, Challenges and Future Perspective

Author(s):Shalini Mani*Divya Jindal and Manisha Singh

Neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders are the main risks for the health care system, exhibiting a huge socioeconomic load. The available range of pharmacotherapeutics mostly provides palliative consequences and fails to treat such conditions. The molecular etiology of various neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders is mostly associated with a change in genetic background, which can be inherited/triggered by other environmental factors. To address such conditions, gene therapy is considered a potential approach claiming a permanent cure of the disease primarily by deletion, silencing, or edition of faulty genes and by insertion of healthier genes. In gene therapy, vectors (viral/nonvial) play an important role in delivering the desired gene to a specific region of the brain. Targeted gene therapy has unraveled opportunities for the treatment of many neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders. For improved gene delivery, the current techniques mainly focus on designing a precise viral vector, plasmid transfection, nanotechnology, microRNA, and in vivo clustered regulatory interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-based therapy. These latest techniques have great benefits in treating predominant neurological and neurodevelopmental disorders, including Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and autism spectrum disorder, as well as rarer diseases. Nevertheless, all these delivery methods have their limitations, including immunogenic reactions, off-target effects, and a deficiency of effective biomarkers to appreciate the effectiveness of therapy. In this review, we present a summary of the current methods in targeted gene delivery, followed by the limitations and future direction of gene therapy for the cure of neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders.

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Meet the Editorial Board Member

Author(s): Lei Chen

Prof. Wei Chen received his PhD degree in Theoretical Biophysics from Inner Mongolia University in 2010. Now, he is a professor at Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine. His researches focus on Bioinformatics and Machine Learning, and several related works have been published in Nucleic Acids Research, Bioinformatics, Briefings in Bioinformatics. As indicated by
google scholar, his more than100 academic peer review papers have been cited over 15000 times. At
present, he serves as the Deputy Editor of Molecular Therapy-Nucleic Acids, Editorial Board Member of Current Bioinformatics, Current Gene Therapy, Interdisciplinary Sciences: Computational Life Sciences, and Reviewer for Nature Communications, Nucleic Acids Research, Bioinformatics, Briefings in Bioinformatics, etc.


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