The battle of “nano” paclitaxel

Alexandros Marios Sofias, Michael Dunne, Gert Storm, Christine Allen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

274 Citations (Scopus)
173 Downloads (Pure)


Paclitaxel (PTX) is one of the three most widely used chemotherapeutic agents, together with doxorubicin and cisplatin, and is first or second line treatment for several types of cancers. In 2000, Taxol, the conventional formulation of PTX, became the best-selling cancer drug of all time with annual sales of 1.6 billion. In 2005, the introduction of the albumin-based formulation of PTX, known as Abraxane, ended Taxol's monopoly of the PTX market. Abraxane's ability to push the Taxol innovator and generic formulations aside attracted fierce competition amongst competitors worldwide to develop their own unique, new and improved formulation of PTX. At this time there are at least 18 companies focused on pre-clinical and/or clinical development of nano-formulations of PTX. These pharmaceutical companies are investing substantial capital to capture a share of the lucrative global PTX market. It is hoped that any formulation that dominates the market will result in tangible benefits to patients in terms of both survival and quality of life. Given all of this activity, here we address the question: Who is going to win the battle of “nano” paclitaxel?

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-30
Number of pages11
JournalAdvanced drug delivery reviews
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • Abraxane®
  • Nanomedicine
  • Nanotechnology
  • Oncology
  • Paclitaxel
  • Taxol®
  • 2023 OA procedure


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