Absorption Enhancing Excipients in Systemic Nasal Drug Delivery

  • Edward T. Maggio Aegis Therapeutics


Intranasal drug delivery is becoming an increasingly important form of drug administration for chronic and chronic-intermittent diseases. Important new applications in development include drugs for diabetes, osteoporosis, obesity, certain types of convulsive disorders, migraine headaches, symptomatic pain relief, nausea, and anxiety, among others. Transmucosal absorption across the nasal mucosa is generally limited to molecules under 1,000 Da in size. Systemic delivery of molecules larger than this requires formulation with a suitable transmucosal absorption enhancer. More than one hundred potential transmucosal absorption enhancing excipients have been tested to date.  Nearly all have failed to be practical due to poor effectiveness or unacceptable toxicity to mucosal tissue. Alkylsaccharides, cyclodextrins, and chitosan's have emerged as the leading candidates for potential broad clinical applications and are allowing development of convenient, patient-friendly, needle free formulations of small molecule drugs, as well as peptide and protein drugs that can be administered at home, at work, or in other public and private settings outside of the doctor’s office or hospital environment.

Author Biography

Edward T. Maggio, Aegis Therapeutics
Edward T. Maggio, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer and Director. Prior to co-founding Aegis, Dr. Maggio was founder and Chief Executive Officer of Structural Bioinformatics Inc., (major corporate investors IBM and Quest Diagnostics). He was founder and Chief Executive Officer of ImmunoPharmaceutics, Inc. (IPI), which developed a number of endothelin antagonists, including Pfizer’s Thelin® (Sitaxsentan), approved in 2006 for sale in Europe for cardiovascular disease. Dr. Maggio has been a founder and board member of seven public and private life science companies in the San Diego area and one in Copenhagen, Denmark. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and was an NIH postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry. He has served or currently serves as an advisory board member for the Polytechnic Institute of New York University, Department of Chemical and Biological Sciences; the University of California, San Diego, Dean’s Board of Advisors for Biological Sciences; the Baylor University School of Engineering and Computer Science; the California State University, San Marcos, Biotechnology Programs Advisory Board; and the Industry Council of the San Diego Consortium for Regenerative Medicine; the Editorial Board of the “Journal of Excipients and Food Chemicals”, and a reviewer for the journal “Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism.” Dr. Maggio has edited and coauthored a number of books and scientific articles in the biotechnology area and is an author of more than sixty issued and pending U.S. and foreign patents. - See more at: http://aegisthera.com/corporate/management-and-board-of-directors/#maggio
How to Cite
MAGGIO, Edward T.. Absorption Enhancing Excipients in Systemic Nasal Drug Delivery. Journal of Excipients and Food Chemicals, [S.l.], v. 5, n. 2, p. 100-112, june 2014. ISSN 21502668. Available at: <https://ojs.abo.fi/ojs/index.php/jefc/article/view/756>. Date accessed: 13 july 2024.


alkyl saccharide, chitosan, cyclodextrin, nasal delivery, transmucosal absorption