Unleashing the potential of cell membrane-based nanoparticles for COVID-19 treatment and vaccination

Pereira-Silva, Miguel and Chauhan, Gaurav and Shin, Matthew D. and Hoskins, Clare and J. Madou, Marc and Martinez-Chapa, Sergio O. and Steinmetz, Nicole F. and Veiga, Fransico and Santos, Ana Cláudia (2021) Unleashing the potential of cell membrane-based nanoparticles for COVID-19 treatment and vaccination. Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery, 18 (10). pp. 1395-1414. ISSN 1742-5247 (https://doi.org/10.1080/17425247.2021.1922387)

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Introduction: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a particular coronavirus strain responsible for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), accounting for more than 3.1 million deaths worldwide. Several health-related strategies have been successfully developed to contain the rapidly-spreading virus across the globe, toward reduction of both disease burden and infection rates. Particularly, attention has been focused on either the development of novel drugs and vaccines, or by adapting already-existing drugs for COVID-19 treatment, mobilizing huge efforts to block disease progression and to overcome the shortage of effective measures available at this point. Areas covered: This perspective covers the breakthrough of multifunctional biomimetic cell membrane-based nanoparticles as next-generation nanosystems for cutting-edge COVID-19 therapeutics and vaccination, specifically cell membrane-derived nanovesicles and cell membrane-coated nanoparticles, both tailorable cell membrane-based nanosystems enriched with the surface repertoire of native cell membranes, toward maximized biointerfacing, immune evasion, cell targeting and cell-mimicking properties. Expert opinion: Nano-based approaches have received widespread interest regarding enhanced antigen delivery, prolonged blood circulation half-life and controlled release of drugs. Cell membrane-based nanoparticles comprise interesting antiviral multifunctional nanoplatforms for blocking SARS-CoV-2 binding to host cells, reducing inflammation through cytokine neutralization and improving drug delivery toward COVID-19 treatment.