Peptide drug modifications to enhance bioavailability and blood-brain barrier permeability.

K. A. Witt, T. J. Gillespie, J. D. Huber, R. D. Egleton, T. P. Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

182 Scopus citations


Peptides have the potential to be potent pharmaceutical agents for the treatment of many central nervous system derived maladies. Unfortunately peptides are generally water-soluble compounds that will not enter the central nervous system, via passive diffusion, due to the existence of the blood-brain barrier. Peptides can also undergo metabolic deactivation by peptidases, thus further reducing their therapeutic benefits. In targeting peptides to the central nervous system consideration must be focused both on increasing bioavailability and enhancing brain uptake. To date multiple strategies have been examined with this focus. However, each strategy comes with its own complications and considerations. In this review we assess the strengths and weaknesses of many of the methods currently being examined to enhance peptide entry into the central nervous system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2329-2343
Number of pages15
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Endocrinology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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