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Archaeosomes are made from lipids found in archaeal bacteria or synthetic archaeal lipids. Archaeosomes are a novel generation of liposomes that are made from polar ether lipids extracted from the Archaea. They have higher stabilities in acidic or alkaline pH, bile salts, high temperatures and against phospholipase, oxidation, chemical and enzymatic hydrolysis in comparison with conventional liposomes.
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Scope and Importance:
Archaeosomes have applications in drug and gene delivery. Lipid carriers are of special importance among carriers. Archaeosome is one of the lipid carriers. The industry has progressed steadily during the past decade and will continue to sustain growth in the coming four to five years. Modern industries and research institutes have begun to explore newer methods leading to a steady market for these technologies.
Archaeosomes are unicellular microorganisms that are regarded as one of the three domains of life (apart from Bacteria and Eucarya). They mostly inhabit extreme environments such as hot acidic springs and submarine volcanic fields (with high salinity, very high or very low temperature and pH, low oxygen concentrations and high pressure) and therefore possess unique structural and metabolic features to survive. The lipid composition of cell membrane plays one of the key roles in overcoming destabilizing conditions of such extreme environments. Archaeal lipids have four unique characteristics that increase membrane stability in these conditions: (1) stereochemistry of glycerophosphate groups: sn-glycerol-1-phosphate defines sn-2 and -3 positions of hydrocarbon chain binding, (2) ether linkages between glycerol moiety and hydrocarbon chains, (3) high methyl branching of hydrocarbon chains (isoprenoids and isopranoids) and (4) rigid membrane-spanning bipolar lipids with tetra ether core in several archaeal species.
For the past few decades, lipid bilayer vesicles (liposomes) have been extensively studied for drug delivery. The ability to incorporate hydrophilic, lipophilic and amphiphilic compounds into liposomes (to aqueous core or lipid bilayer) led to the development of drug, vaccine and gene delivery systems, protecting encapsulated drug from physiological media, better bio distribution of drugs, site- and time-specific unloading of cargo in therapeutic concentrations at the site of action and lowering toxic side effects of active compounds. Liposomes that are prepared from natural phospholipids are biologically inert and cause little or no antigenic, pyrogenic, allergic and toxic reactions.
Novel archaeosome compositions and their use in vaccine formulations as adjuvants and/or delivery systems, to enhance the immune response to immunogens in an animal such as a human, are described. Another aspect relates to the use of these archaeosomes to enhance the delivery of compounds such as pharmaceuticals to specific cell types and tissues in animals and other life forms, via various routes of administration such as subcutaneous, intramuscular, and oral. The efficacy of the archaeosomes and also of conventional liposomes can be further improved in these applications, by incorporation of coenzyme Q10 and/ or polyethyleneglycol-lipid conjugate into liposomes made from these archaeosomes.
According to research the global market for archaeosomes was valued at $151.3 billion in 2013. This market is forecasted to reach nearly $173.8 billion in 2018, registering a 5-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.8%.
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