Physical energy for drug delivery; poration, concentration and activation

Shanmugamurthy Lakshmanan, Gaurav K. Gupta, Pinar Avci, Rakkiyappan Chandran, Magesh Sadasivam, Ana Elisa Serafim Jorge, Michael R. Hamblin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

137 Citations (Scopus)


Techniques for controlling the rate and duration of drug delivery, while targeting specific locations of the body for treatment, to deliver the cargo (drugs or DNA) to particular parts of the body by what are becoming called "smart drug carriers" have gained increased attention during recent years. Using such smart carriers, researchers have also been investigating a number of physical energy forces including: magnetic fields, ultrasound, electric fields, temperature gradients, photoactivation or photorelease mechanisms, and mechanical forces to enhance drug delivery within the targeted cells or tissues and also to activate the drugs using a similar or a different type of external trigger. This review aims to cover a number of such physical energy modalities. Various advanced techniques such as magnetoporation, electroporation, iontophoresis, sonoporation/mechnoporation, phonophoresis, optoporation and thermoporation will be covered in the review. Special emphasis will be placed on photodynamic therapy owing to the experience of the authors' laboratory in this area, but other types of drug cargo and DNA vectors will also be covered. Photothermal therapy and theranostics will also be discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98-114
Number of pages17
JournalAdvanced Drug Delivery Reviews
Publication statusPublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Electroporation
  • Gene transfection
  • Magnetoporation
  • Nanoparticles
  • Optoporation
  • Photothermal therapy
  • Smart drug carriers
  • Sonoporation
  • Thermoporation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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