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A.Arunachalam, M.Karthikeyan, D.Vinay Kumar, Prathap. M, S. Sethuraman, S.Ashutoshkumar, S.Manidipahttps://doi.org/10.33786/JCPR.2010.v01i01.015
The transdermal route has numerous advantages over the more traditional drug delivery routes. These include high bioavailability, absence of first pass hepatic metabolism, steady drug plasma concentrations, and the fact that therapy is non-invasive. The main obstacle to permeating drug molecules is the outermost layer of the skin, the stratum corneum. Consequently, research into enhancing transdermal drug delivery (TDD) by overcoming this layer is an area of prime interest. This review article is written to provide a coverage commentary of the recent advancements in TDD enhancement techniques. Skin penetration enhancement techniques have been developed to improve bioavailability and increase the range of drugs for which topical and transdermal delivery is a viable option. This review describes enhancement techniques based on drug/vehicle optimisation such as drug selection, prodrugs and ion-pairs, supersaturated drug solutions, eutectic systems, complexation, liposomes, vesicles and particles. Enhancement via modification of the stratum corneum by hydration, chemical enhancers acting on the structure of the stratum corneum lipids and keratin, partitioning and solubility effects are also discussed. The mechanism of action of penetration enhancers and retarders and their potential for clinical application is described.