Kulkarni TA, Bade AN, Sillman B, et al. A year-long extended release nanoformulated cabotegravir prodrug. Nat Mater. 2020;19(8):910-920. doi:10.1038/s41563-020-0674-z
Long-acting cabotegravir (CAB) extends antiretroviral drug administration from daily to monthly. However, dosing volumes, injection site reactions and health-care oversight are obstacles towards a broad usage. The creation of poloxamer-coated hydrophobic and lipophilic CAB prodrugs with controlled hydrolysis and tissue penetrance can overcome these obstacles. To such ends, fatty acid ester CAB nanocrystal prodrugs with 14, 18 and 22 added carbon chains were encased in biocompatible surfactants named NMCAB, NM2CAB and NM3CAB and tested for drug release, activation, cytotoxicity, antiretroviral activities, pharmacokinetics and biodistribution.