Review: Organic nanoparticle based active targeting for photodynamic therapy treatment of breast cancer cells

Hanieh Montaseri, Cherie Ann Kruger and Heidi Abrahamse _

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Oncotarget. 2020; 11:2120-2136. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.27596

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Hanieh Montaseri1, Cherie Ann Kruger1 and Heidi Abrahamse1

1 Laser Research Centre, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein 2028, South Africa

Correspondence to:

Heidi Abrahamse,email: [email protected]

Keywords: photodynamic therapy; photosensitizers; nanoparticle delivery; targeting agents; breast cancer treatment

Received: March 11, 2020     Accepted: April 27, 2020     Published: June 02, 2020


Targeted Photodynamic therapy (TPDT) is a non-invasive and site-specific treatment modality, which has been utilized to eradicate cancer tumour cells with photoactivated chemicals or photosensitizers (PSs), in the presence of laser light irradiation and molecular tissue oxygen. Breast cancer is the commonest cancer among women worldwide and is currently treated using conventional methods such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery. Despite the recent advancements made in PDT, poor water solubility and non-specificity of PSs, often affect the overall effectivity of this unconventional cancer treatment. With respect to conventional PS obstacles, great strides have been made towards the application of targeted nanoparticles in PDT to resolve these limitations. Therefore, this review provides an overview of scientific peer reviewed published studies in relation to functionalized organic nanoparticles (NPs) for effective TPDT treatment of breast cancer over the last 10 years (2009 to 2019). The main aim of this review is to highlight the importance of organic NP active based PDT targeted drug delivery systems, to improve the overall biodistribution of PSs in breast cancer tumour’s.

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