Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Let there be light

27.05.2008
Photodynamic therapy breakthrough in cancer treatment

Researchers from the Peninsula Medical School in Cornwall, UK, have modified a photodynamic therapy (PDT) treatment that combines a topically applied cream with visible light to destroy cancer cells while leaving surrounding tissue unharmed.

The cream is applied directly to skin cancers and pre-cancers, which then naturally produces a photosensitive drug. A special red light is then shone on the tumour a few hours later, to activate this light sensitive compound. This results in cellular damage and the destruction of the tumour.

This technique results in reduced scarring and little or no damage to the surrounding healthy cells.

By adding the iron chelator CP94 to the cream, the research team have found that the effects of PDT are greatly improved and achieve greater reductions in tumour depth in tumours currently too thick to be treated easily by the non-enhanced form of this treatment.

This is the first time in the world that PDT trials of this modified PDT treatment have been carried out involving humans. Trials involving patients have taken place at clinics at the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust in Truro.

PDT is achieving success in the treatment of actinic keratoses (lesions that can develop after years of exposure to UV light); Bowen’s disease (the growth of abnormal calls that can turn into skin cancer, and that is partly due to long-term exposure to the sun); and basal cell carcinoma (the most common form of skin cancer).

The work of the Peninsula Medical School in this area of research is funded in part by the Duchy Health Charity in Cornwall.

Dr. Alison Curnow from the Peninsula Medical School in Cornwall, commented: “PDT is very effective non-surgical treatment for certain types of dermatological cancers and precancers. It normally destroys the tumour without scarring or damage to surrounding healthy cells.”

She added: “Through years of research we have been able to develop a modified PDT treatment enabling for the first time for thicker nodular basal cell carcinomas to be treated effectively with a single PDT treatment. This is important, as this is a very common form of skin cancer.”

The work of Dr. Curnow and her team are part of a developing research theme for the Peninsula Medical School, which is Environment and Human Health. Operated mainly from the Peninsula Medical School in Cornwall, but with collaboration from colleagues within the institution across the South West of England, this research theme seeks to identify and study the links between our health and well-being and the environment.

More information is available by logging on at www.pms.ac.uk.

Care Study

Graham O’Neill, 54, is technical marketing director at Imerys Minerals in Cornwall and lives near Mevagissey.

Graham was raised in the West Indies, and although his mother was very careful about protecting him from the sun, his exposure to the sun’s rays at an early age led to the discovery of melanomas on his skin in 1983.

“Back then the treatments were quite severe,” said Graham. “It involved liquid nitrogen, scraping out the melanoma and cauterizing it. Not only was this very painful, but it also left scarring.”

He now receives treatment with PDT, which is much better for him. He said: “The treatment is extremely good. From a personal point of view it is much less unpleasant and seems to be more effective. It also treats quite a big area in one go, which means fewer treatments in the long run. The other issue with melanomas is that they keep coming back. With PDT I have found that they do not return as frequently and, when they do, they are far less severe.”

On balance Graham is delighted with the treatments, which he has been receiving at Treliske Hospital, Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust in Truro. He said: “Compared with the old way of doing things, PDT is a fantastic therapy and one which I would recommend to other patients. It is very exciting that the Peninsula Medical School is taking such a worldwide lead in research in this area.”

Andrew Gould | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.pms.ac.uk/pms/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Study points to new drug target in fight against cancer
19.09.2019 | Rice University

nachricht Researchers develop tumour growth roadmap
19.09.2019 | Universität Leipzig

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: 'Nanochains' could increase battery capacity, cut charging time

How long the battery of your phone or computer lasts depends on how many lithium ions can be stored in the battery's negative electrode material. If the battery runs out of these ions, it can't generate an electrical current to run a device and ultimately fails.

Materials with a higher lithium ion storage capacity are either too heavy or the wrong shape to replace graphite, the electrode material currently used in...

Im Focus: Stevens team closes in on 'holy grail' of room temperature quantum computing chips

Photons interact on chip-based system with unprecedented efficiency

To process information, photons must interact. However, these tiny packets of light want nothing to do with each other, each passing by without altering the...

Im Focus: Happy hour for time-resolved crystallography

Researchers from the Department of Atomically Resolved Dynamics of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg, the University of Hamburg and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) outstation in the city have developed a new method to watch biomolecules at work. This method dramatically simplifies starting enzymatic reactions by mixing a cocktail of small amounts of liquids with protein crystals. Determination of the protein structures at different times after mixing can be assembled into a time-lapse sequence that shows the molecular foundations of biology.

The functions of biomolecules are determined by their motions and structural changes. Yet it is a formidable challenge to understand these dynamic motions.

Im Focus: Modular OLED light strips

At the International Symposium on Automotive Lighting 2019 (ISAL) in Darmstadt from September 23 to 25, 2019, the Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, a provider of research and development services in the field of organic electronics, will present OLED light strips of any length with additional functionalities for the first time at booth no. 37.

Almost everyone is familiar with light strips for interior design. LED strips are available by the metre in DIY stores around the corner and are just as often...

Im Focus: Tomorrow´s coolants of choice

Scientists assess the potential of magnetic-cooling materials

Later during this century, around 2060, a paradigm shift in global energy consumption is expected: we will spend more energy for cooling than for heating....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Optical Technologies: International Symposium „Future Optics“ in Hannover

19.09.2019 | Event News

Society 5.0: putting humans at the heart of digitalisation

10.09.2019 | Event News

Interspeech 2019 conference: Alexa and Siri in Graz

04.09.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quality control in immune communication: Chaperones detect immature signaling molecules in the immune system

20.09.2019 | Life Sciences

Moderately Common Plants Show Highest Relative Losses

20.09.2019 | Life Sciences

The Fluid Fingerprint of Hurricanes

20.09.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>