• Arya G. K. Department of Pharmaceutics, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Science Campus, Kochi, India
  • Anjaly A. Kumar Department of Pharmaceutics, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Science Campus, Kochi, India
  • Archana J. Nair Department of Pharmaceutics, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Science Campus, Kochi, India
  • Jeni Raju Department of Pharmaceutics, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Science Campus, Kochi, India
  • Sreeja C Nair Department of Pharmaceutics, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Science Campus, Kochi, India


Nano discs recently evolved as a novel tool for studying the membrane associated proteins and serve as an effective drug delivery system. Nano discs constitute disc shaped nano particles and can be defined as a membrane system which is synthetic in nature and aids in the study of membrane proteins. It is mainly made of phospholipid bilayer and the water repelling edge is isolated by amphipathic proteins called membrane scaffolding proteins [MSP]. Micelles present in the nano disc mimics the property of the biological membrane proteins. It is a powerful technology that competently delivers the drug components in to the right cells in the right tissues. Membrane scaffold proteins are primarily expressed, purified and characterized and self-assembled to form Nano discs by the process of dialysis using biobeads. Nano discs are proven to be effective in the study of membrane proteins because they can fluidize and counterbalance and also help in reclusion, refinement, biophysical and biochemical studies of them. It also presents a more genuine environment than liposomes, bicelles, amphipols and detergent micelles. Major technological advantages of nano discs include the higher stability and carrier capacity and also the increased feasibility of incorporating both hydrophilic and hydrophobic substances of drug carrier. Thus nano discs serves as an excellent system in its ability to precisely control its composition and provide a nano scale membrane surface for investigating molecular recognition events. This article reviews the emphasis of nanodiscs in studying membrane proteins as well as its effectivity in transforming into a major drug delivery system. An overview of published literatures between 1996 and 2017 was conducted to write the review.

Keywords: Membrane Scaffolding Proteins, Phospholipid bilayer, Hydrophobic beads, High densitylipoproteins


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How to Cite
K., A., Kumar, A., Nair, A., Raju, J., & Nair, S. (2019). NANODISCS: A NEW EPOCH IN THE STUDY OF MEMBRANE PROTEINS AND AS AN EMERGING DRUG DELIVERY SYSTEM. International Journal of Applied Pharmaceutics, 11(1), 1-6.
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