INTRODUCTION: Lipid-based drug delivery systems (LBDDS) are the most promising technique to formulate the poorly water soluble drugs. Nanotechnology strongly influences the therapeutic performance of hydrophobic drugs and has become an essential approach in drug delivery research. Self-nanoemulsifying drug delivery systems (SNEDDS) are a vital strategy that combines benefits of LBDDS and nanotechnology. SNEDDS are now preferred to improve the formulation of drugs with poor aqueous solubility. Areas covered: The review in its first part shortly describes the LBDDS, nanoemulsions and clarifies the ambiguity between nanoemulsions and microemulsions. In the second part, the review discusses SNEDDS and elaborates on the current developments and modifications in this area without discussing their associated preparation techniques and excipient properties. Expert opinion: SNEDDS have exhibit the potential to increase the bioavailability of poorly water soluble drugs. The stability of SNEDDS is further increased by solidification. Controlled release and supersaturation can be achieved, and are associated with increased patient compliance and improved drug loads, respectively. Presence of biodegradable ingredients and ease of large-scale manufacturing combined with a lot of 'drug-targeting opportunities' give SNEDDS a clear distinction and prominence over other solubility enhancement techniques.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.