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Review Article

Immunoliposomes in Acute Myeloid Leukaemia Therapy: An Overview of Possible Targets and Obstacles

[ Vol. 26 , Issue. 28 ]


Aditi Singh, Nikolai Norevik Myklebust, Sarah Marie Vie Furevik, Ragnhild Haugse and Lars Herfindal*   Pages 5278 - 5292 ( 15 )


Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML) is the neoplastic transformation of Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSC) and relapsed disease is a major challenge in the treatment. Despite technological advances in the field of medicine and our heightened knowledge regarding the pathogenesis of AML, the initial therapy of “7+3” Cytarabine and Daunorubicin has remained mainly unchanged since 1973. AML is a disease of the elderly, and increased morbidity in this patient group does not allow the full use of the treatment and drug-resistant relapse is common.

Nanocarriers are drug-delivery systems that can be used to transport drugs to the bone marrow and target Leukemic Stem Cells (LSC), conferring less side-effects compared to the free-drug alternative. Nanocarriers also can be used to favour the transport of drugs that otherwise would not have been used clinically due to toxicity and poor efficacy. Liposomes are a type of nanocarrier that can be used as a dedicated drug delivery system, which can also have active ligands on the surface in order to interact with antigens on the target cells or tissues. In addition to using small molecules, it is possible to attach antibodies to the liposome surface, generating so-called immunoliposomes. By using immunoliposomes as a drug-delivery system, it is possible to minimize the toxic side effects caused by the chemotherapeutic drug on healthy organs, and at the same time direct the drugs towards the remaining AML blasts and stem cells.

This article aims to explore the possibilities of using immunoliposomes as a drug carrier in AML therapy. Emphasis will be on possible target molecules on the AML cells, leukaemic stem cells, as well as bone marrow constituents relevant to AML therapy. Further, some conditions and precautions that must be met for immunoliposomes to be used in AML therapy will be discussed.


Acute myeloid leukemia, liposomes, antibodies, immunoliposomes, bone marrow, pharmacy, production.


Department of Clinical Science, University of Bergen, Bergen, Department of Clinical Science, University of Bergen, Bergen, Hospital pharmacies enterprise, Western Norway, Bergen, Hospital pharmacies enterprise, Western Norway, Bergen, Centre for Pharmacy, Department of Clinical Science, University of Bergen, Bergen

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