Ischemic heart disease is the leading cause of mortality worldwide and will remain to do so by the year 2020 according to prognosis. Therefore, reduction of myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury is one of the biggest challenges for modern medicine. An approach to problem solving is based on targeted delivery of cardioprotective drugs (angiogenic growth factors, recombinant erythropoietin, ATP-sensitive potassium channel activators, etc.) with covalent and/or non-covalent bonds with nanocarriers into myocardium. The advantages of this approach are: targeted therapeutic effects on focal pathological processes (tumor growth, inflammation, ischemia), reduction of the toxicity and side effects of the drugs, enhancement of solubility and stability of the drugs, improvement of the biocompatibility, and controlled release of the drugs.
Researchers of the Laboratory of Nanotechnology has developed a passive targeted delivery technique for delivery of the cardioprotective drugs into ischemic myocardium, and proved the possibility of the drug delivery into myocardium by targeting ligand-mediated specific recognition of surface markers of cell damage.