Photodynamic Therapy for Urological Malignancies: Past to Current Approaches
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PURPOSE: Modern PDT for urological tumors is a potentially selective approach in which in situ photosensitization by a nontoxic drug, locally activated by light, generates cytotoxic reactive oxygen species, causing cell death. While urological clinical experience with PDT is largely limited to treatment for superficial bladder cancer, the advent of novel photosensitizers and technologies for treatment planning, light delivery and dosimetry, PDT for prostate and other urological cancers appears increasingly realistic. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We reviewed the current literature on PDT for urological tumors, in addition to recent emerging data from our laboratory and elsewhere. RESULTS: Remarkable progress has been made in the field of photochemistry and photobiology. Together with improved optical delivery and imaging systems PDT holds promise as an alternative, minimally invasive and potentially curative treatment for localized solid tumors as well as for palliative treatment for isolated, clinically problematic metastases. CONCLUSIONS: Current experience with photodynamic therapy using contemporary photosensitizing agents and light sources is mainly restricted to in vivo experimental models and early phase clinical trails. However, ongoing preclinical work and clinical trials indicate that safer and effective PDT treatments in uro-oncology are imminent.
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