Intravenous (IV) route is preferred for rapid onset of action, avoiding first pass metabolism and achieving site specific delivery. Development of IV formulations for poorly water soluble drugs poses significant challenges. Formulation approaches like salt formation, co-solvents, surfactants and inclusion complexation using cyclodextrins are used for solubilisation. However, these approaches are not applicable universally and have limitations in extent of solubilisation, hypersensitivity, toxicity and application to only specific type of molecules. IV nanosuspension have been attracting attention as a viable strategy for development of IV formulations of poorly water-soluble drugs. Nanosuspension consists of nanocrystals of poorly water soluble drug suspended in aqueous media and stabilized using minimal concentration of stabilizers. Recent years have witnessed their potential in formulations for toxicological studies and clinical trials. However various challenges are associated with the translational development of IV nanosuspensions. Therefore, the objective of the current review is to provide a holistic view of formulation development and desired properties of IV nanosuspensions. It will also focus on advancements in characterization tools, manufacturing techniques and post-production processing. Challenges associated with translational development and regulatory aspects of IV nanosuspension will be addressed. Additionally, their role in preclinical evaluation and special applications like targeting will also be discussed with the help of case studies. The applications of IV nanosuspensions shall expand as their applications move from preclinical phase to commercialization.
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