Liposomes are spherical nano-sized bilayered vesicles or “bags” in which an aqueous volume is entirely closed within a membrane composed of lipid (fat) molecules, usually phospholipids. The components within the bilayer define the rigidity/ fluidity and charge of the bilayer.
Liposomes can be divided into two categories on the basis of their size and the number of bilayers – unilamellar vesicles and multilamellar vesicles. Unilamellar vesicles-aqueous solution is enclosed within vesicles having single phospholipid bilayer sphere. Unilamellar vesicles are further divided into Large Unilamellar Vesicles (LUV) and Small Unilamellar Vesicles (SUV). On the other hand, several unilamellar structures collectively make a multilamellar structure of concentric phospholipid spheres separated by layers of water. Multilamellar Vesicles look like an onion.
Water soluble drugs are encapsulated by vesicles in their aqueous spaces and lipid soluble drugs within the membrane. Liposomes are biodegradable, versatile and hypoallergenic in nature. There are two methods for the production of liposomes. Liposomes can be created using cholesterol and non –toxic phospholipids using two techniques:
- Passive Loading Technique
- Mechanical Dispersion Method
- Detergent Removal Method
- Solvent Dispersion Method
- Active loading Technique
Liposomes provide selective passive targeting to tumor tissues and are used as carriers for increased and sustained drug delivery. However, once administered, liposomes cannot be removed. Leakage of encapsulated drug during storage is another problem associated with their use.
Liposomes are mainly used for controlled and targeted drug delivery in pharmaceutical industries. Within the cosmetics industry, they are used as carriers for many molecules. Liposomes may differ depending on their lipid size, composition, surface charge and method of preparation. They are biodegradable and biocompatible and are able to trap both hyrophillic and lipophilic drugs. Liposomes may be very small (0.025 μm) or very large ((2.5 μm) vesicles.
Liposomes: Market Dynamics
Liposomes are used in the treatment of solid tumors. Liposomes containing bisphosphonates target solid tumors and reduce tumor associated macrophages. It is also expected that the market for liposomes will grow as the demand for effective drugs in the field of pharmaceuticals is expected to increase over the forecast period.
Increase in the number of patients and strict government policies are expected to improve liposomes market. Improvement in healthcare facilities and advancements in technology will also positively affect the liposomes market.
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Increasing awareness among people and increase in diseases have fueled the use of drugs containing liposomes. At the same time, innovation of products with better efficiency has also led to increased consumption of drugs containing liposomes. Collaborations with companies and popularity of liposome-containing drugs is also expected to create new opportunities in the market.
Liposomes target the disease cells at disease sites. Not just that, they also have low toxicity. Due to these properties, liposomes are achieving clinical acceptance and the liposomes market is thus, expected to grow at a healthy pace during the forecast period.
Liposomes: Market Segmentation
The global market for liposomes can be segmented on the basis of product type into:
- ATP Liposomes
- Plain Liposomes
- Magnetic Liposomes
- pH Sensitive Liposomes
- Fluorescent Liposomes
The global market for liposomes, on the basis of application, can be segmented into:
- Cancer Therapy
- Ocular Applications
- Pulmonary Applications
Liposomes: Regional Outlook
Increasing population and a rise in the number of diseases are the two factors expected to cause the Liposome market to grow in the Asia Pacific region as it is important to find the cure of diseases. Increasing pharmaceutical applications and easy availability of products are also expected to aid the growth of the liposomes market in the Asia Pacific Region.
The U.S. & Europe markets are expected to grow as advancements in technology are leading to research on various successful methods to cure diseases. The growth of Liposomes market is expected to gear up due to the growing applications of liposomes in gene therapy, drug delivery, specific targeting, drug protection, etc. across the globe.
Liposomes: Market Participants
Some of the market giants in the global Liposomes market are:
- Teva Pharmaceutical
- Spectrum Pharmaceutical
- Shanghai New Asia
- Johnson & Johnson
- Encapsula Nano Sciences
- Sun Pharmaceutical
- Gilead Sciences
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