For the past three decades, pharmaceutical research has been mainly converging to novel carrier systems and nanoparticulate colloidal technologies for drug delivery, such as nanoparticles, nanospheres, vesicular systems, liposomes, or nanocapsules to impart novel functions and targeting abilities. Such technologies opened the gate towards more sophisticated and effective multi-acting platform(s) which can offer site-targeting, imaging, and treatment using a single multifunctional system. Unfortunately, such technologies faced major intrinsic hurdles including high cost, low stability profile, short shelf-life, and poor reproducibility across and within production batches leading to harsh bench-to-bedside transformation.Currently, pharmaceutical industry along with academic research is investing heavily in bioconjugate structures as an appealing and advantageous alternative to nanoparticulate delivery systems with all its flexible benefits when it comes to custom design and tailor grafting along with avoiding most of its shortcomings. Bioconjugation is a ubiquitous technique that finds a multitude of applications in different branches of life sciences, including drug and gene delivery applications, biological assays, imaging, and biosensing.Bioconjugation is simple, easy, and generally a one-step drug (active pharmaceutical ingredient) conjugation, using various smart biocompatible, bioreducible, or biodegradable linkers, to targeting agents, PEG layer, or another drug. In this chapter, the different types of bioconjugates, the techniques used throughout the course of their synthesis and characterization, as well as the well-established synthetic approaches used for their formulation are presented. In addition, some exemplary representatives are outlined with greater emphasis on the practical tips and tricks of the most prominent techniques such as click chemistry, carbodiimide coupling, and avidin-biotin system.
Methods Mol Biol (Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.))
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