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Oncotarget: Active targeting for photodynamic therapy treatment of breast cancer cells


Volume 11, Issue 22 of @Oncotarget reported that targeted Photodynamic therapy is a non-invasive and site-specific treatment modality, which has been utilized to eradicate cancer tumor cells with photoactivated chemicals or photosensitizers, in the presence of laser light irradiation and molecular tissue oxygen.

Breast cancer is the most common 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.

Therefore, this review provides an overview of scientific peer-reviewed published studies in relation to functionalized organic nanoparticles for effective TPDT treatment of breast cancer over the last 10 years.

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 tumors.

Dr. Heidi Abrahamse from The University of Johannesburg said, "Breast cancer is a pervasive and common disease, which causes the second-highest cancer-related death amongst women worldwide."

Figure 3: Functionalized nanoparticle platform with various targeting ligand agents for active PS delivery in PDT applications, with PEG to improve biocompatibility and an imaging fluorescent probe to monitor PS specific tumour cellular uptake.

These systems enable the specific delivery of a drug to targeted cancer tissue and so consequently improve drug uptake efficacy and overall treatment outcomes, as well as minimize unwanted side effects and sometimes even allow for controlled drug release rates.

Thus, novel unconventional NP drug system-based treatment approaches are urgently needed for the improved treatment of primary and metastatic breast cancers, in order to limit unwanted side effects, as well as enhance the overall survival rate of patients.

The ultimate strategy of NP active targeting drug delivery systems is to obliterate the tumor cells, while sparing the normal cells, with improved treatment outcomes.

Thus, the integration of nanosciences and PDT opens a new window of interest in the exploration and functionalized NPs for the targeted drug delivery of PSs to breast cancer cells, with high selectivity and specificity, in order to diminish unwanted side-effects on healthy cells, however, enhance and overall improve treatment outcomes, as to ensure patient survival.

"The integration of nanosciences and PDT opens a new window of interest in the exploration and functionalized NPs for the targeted drug delivery of PSs to breast cancer cells"

This review should open new research initiatives and avenues for improved PDT breast cancer treatments outcomes, since current research seem to be solely focused on PS drug dosing optimization, instead of considering investigating specifically enhanced NP drug delivery systems for optimal treatment

The Abrahamse Review Team concluded in their Oncotarget Review Article, "it is fortunate that the arrival of organic nanocarriers and TPDT can be applied to usher breast cancer treatment in a new direction. Currently, there are some organic NP-based therapeutics in clinical use for breast cancer treatment and with the many new avenues and opportunities offered by the unique properties of organic nanoplatforms, numerous other organic NPs are on the verge of entering to preclinical trials. Thus, researchers need to start paying more attention to organic nanoplatforms for the further development of actively TPDT for the conclusive treatment of breast cancer."

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DOI - https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.27596

Full text - https://www.oncotarget.com/article/27596/text/

Correspondence to - Heidi Abrahamse - habrahamse@uj.ac.za

Keywords - photodynamic therapy, photosensitizers, nanoparticle delivery, targeting agents, breast cancer treatment

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