Niosomes: A Putative Drug Carrier System

  • A. J. Baillie
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 155)


The hydrophobic effect provides the driving force for the formation of various types of molecular aggregate such as monolayers, hexagonal phases and micelles when surface active substances are placed in an aqueous environment. Vesicles then, are only one particular, albeit useful, type of molecular aggregate and it is now well established that the ability to form such closed structures is not a property unique to the phospholipids and other bilayer forming lipids of biological origin. Vesicles can be formed from a diverse range of amphiphilic substances and terms such as synthetic bilayers allude to the non-biological origin of such vesiculogens. Lecithins, the group of phospholipids most widely used for liposome preparation, are of course zwitterionic surfactants and representatives from the other major types of surfactant; anionic, cationic and non-ionic (Fig. 1) can also form analogous vesicular structures. The diversity of molecular species which can form bilayers and vesicles may be appreciated by consulting reviews by Kunitake (1986), Fuhrhop (1984) and Fendler (1982).


Visceral Leishmaniasis Free Drug Zwitterionic Surfactant Dicetyl Phosphate Inverted Micelle 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. J. Baillie
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PharmacyUniversity of StrathclydeGlasgowUK

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