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is one of the most important human pathogens that is responsible for a variety of diseases ranging from skin and soft tissue infections to endocarditis and sepsis. In recent decades, the treatment of staphylococcal infections has become increasingly difficult as the prevalence of multi-drug resistant strains continues to rise. With increasing mortality rates and medical costs associated with drug resistant strains, there is an urgent need for alternative therapeutic options. Many innovative strategies for alternative drug development are being pursued, including disruption of biofilms, inhibition of virulence factor production, bacteriophage-derived antimicrobials, anti-staphylococcal vaccines, and light-based therapies. While many compounds and methods still need further study to determine their feasibility, some are quickly approaching clinical application and may be available in the near future.
Cannabinoids are emerging as promising antitumor drugs. However, complete tumor eradication solely by cannabinoid therapy remains challenging. In this study, we developed a far-red light activatable cannabinoid prodrug, which allows for tumor-specific and combinatory cannabinoid and photodynamic therapy. This prodrug consists of a phthalocyanine photosensitizer (PS), reactive oxygen species (ROS)-sensitive linker, and cannabinoid. It targets the type-2 cannabinoid receptor (CB2R) overexpressed in various types of cancers. Upon the 690-nm light irradiation, the PS produces cytotoxic ROS, which simultaneously cleaves the ROS-sensitive linker and subsequently releases the cannabinoid drug. We found that this unique multifunctional prodrug design offered dramatically improved therapeutic efficacy, and therefore provided a new strategy for targeted, controlled, and effective antitumor cannabinoid therapy.
(2018) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE).
Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) is the deadliest form of breast cancer because it is more aggressive, diagnosed at later stage and more likely to develop local and systemic recurrence. Many patients do not experience adequate tumor control after current clinical treatments involving surgical removal, chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy, leading to disease progression and significantly decreased quality of life. Here we report a new combinatory therapy strategy involving cannabinoid-based medicine and photodynamic therapy (PDT) for the treatment of TNBC. This combinatory therapy targets two proteins upregulated in TNBC: the cannabinoid CB2 receptor (CBR, a G-protein coupled receptor) and translocator protein (TSPO, a mitochondria membrane receptor). We found that the combined CBR agonist and TSPO-PDT treatment resulted in synergistic inhibition in TNBC cell and tumor growth. This combinatory therapy approach provides new opportunities to treat TNBC with high efficacy. In addition, this study provides new evidence on the therapeutic potential of CBR agonists for cancer.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Recent efforts to develop tumor-targeted photodynamic therapy (PDT) photosensitizers (PSs) have greatly advanced the potential of PDT in cancer therapy, although complete eradication of tumor cells by PDT alone remains challenging. As a way to improve PDT efficacy, we report a new combinatory PDT therapy technique that specifically targets multilayers of cells. Simply mixing different PDT PSs, even those that target distinct receptors (this may still lead to similar cell-killing pathways), may not achieve ideal therapeutic outcomes. Instead, significantly improved outcomes likely require synergistic therapies that target various cellular pathways. In this study, we target two proteins upregulated in cancers: the cannabinoid CB2 receptor (CBR, a G-protein coupled receptor) and translocator protein (TSPO, a mitochondria membrane receptor). We found that the CBR-targeted PS, IR700DX-mbc94, triggered necrotic cell death upon light irradiation, whereas PDT with the TSPO-targeted IR700DX-6T agent led to apoptotic cell death. Both PSs significantly inhibited tumor growth in vivo in a target-specific manner. As expected, the combined CBR- and TSPO-PDT resulted in enhanced cell killing efficacy and tumor inhibition with lower drug dose. The median survival time of animals with multilayer PDT treatment was extended by as much as 2.8-fold over single PDT treatment. Overall, multilayer PDT provides new opportunities to treat cancers with high efficacy and low side effects.
STATEMENT OF SIGNIFICANCE - Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is increasingly used as a minimally invasive, controllable and effective therapeutic procedure for cancer treatment. However, complete eradication of tumor cells by PDT alone remains challenging. In this study, we investigate the potential of multilayer PDT in cancer treatment with high efficacy and low side effects. Through PDT targeting two cancer biomarkers located at distinct subcellular localizations, remarkable synergistic effects in cancer cell killing and tumor inhibition were observed in both in vitro and in vivo experiments. This strategy may be widely applied to treat various cancer types by using strategically designed PDT photosensitizers that target corresponding upregulated receptors at tactical subcellular localization.
Copyright © 2017 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
UNLABELLED - Photodynamic therapy (PDT) has been proven to be a minimally invasive and effective therapeutic strategy for cancer treatment. It can be used alone or as a complement to conventional cancer treatments, such as surgical debulking and chemotherapy. The mitochondrion is an attractive target for developing novel PDT agents, as it produces energy for cells and regulates apoptosis. Current strategy of mitochondria targeting is mainly focused on utilizing cationic photosensitizers that bind to the negatively charged mitochondria membrane. However, such an approach is lack of selectivity of tumor cells. To minimize the damage on healthy tissues and improve therapeutic efficacy, an alternative targeting strategy with high tumor specificity is in critical need. Herein, we report a tumor mitochondria-specific PDT agent, IR700DX-6T, which targets the 18kDa mitochondrial translocator protein (TSPO). IR700DX-6T induced apoptotic cell death in TSPO-positive breast cancer cells (MDA-MB-231) but not TSPO-negative breast cancer cells (MCF-7). In vivo PDT study suggested that IR700DX-6T-mediated PDT significantly inhibited the growth of MDA-MB-231 tumors in a target-specific manner. These combined data suggest that this new TSPO-targeted photosensitizer has great potential in cancer treatment.
STATEMENT OF SIGNIFICANCE - Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is an effective and minimally invasive therapeutic technique for treating cancers. Mitochondrion is an attractive target for developing novel PDT agents, as it produces energy to cells and regulates apoptosis. Current mitochondria targeted photosensitizers (PSs) are based on cationic molecules, which interact with the negatively charged mitochondria membrane. However, such PSs are not specific for cancerous cells, which may result in unwanted side effects. In this study, we developed a tumor mitochondria-targeted PS, IR700DX-6T, which binds to translocator protein (TSPO). This agent effectively induced apoptosis in TSPO-positive cancer cells and significantly inhibited tumor growth in TSPO-positive tumor-bearing mice. These combined data suggest that IR700DX-6T could become a powerful tool in the treatment of multiple cancers that upregulate TSPO.
Copyright © 2015 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
AIM - To determine whether there is an association between complement factor H (CFH) or LOC387715 genotypes and response to treatment with photodynamic therapy (PDT) for exudative age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
METHODS - Sixty-nine patients being treated for neovascular AMD with PDT were genotyped for the CFH Y402H and LOC387715 A69S polymorphisms by allele-specific digestion of PCR products. AMD phenotypes were characterized by clinical examination, fundus photography, and fluorescein angiography.
RESULTS - Adjusting for age, pre-PDT visual acuity (VA), and lesion type, mean VA after PDT was significantly worse for the CFH TT genotype than for the TC or CC genotypes (P=0.05). Post-PDT VA was significantly worse for the CFH TT genotype in the subgroup of patients with predominantly classic choroidal neovascular lesions (P=0.04), but not for the patients with occult lesions (P=0.22). For the LOC387715 A69S variant, there was no significant difference among the genotypes in response to PDT therapy.
CONCLUSIONS - The CFH Y402H variant was associated with a response to PDT treatment in this study. Patients with the CFH TT genotype fared significantly worse with PDT than did those with the CFH TC and CC genotypes, suggesting a potential relationship between CFH genotype and response to PDT.
BACKGROUND - Delta-aminolevulinic acid (ALA)-mediated photodynamic therapy (PDT) is currently being investigated for the treatment of prostate diseases. In this study, we evaluate 1) the in vitro production of protoporphyrin IX (PPIX) (the active photosensitizing agent of ALA-mediated PDT) by two different prostate cancer cell lines (LNCaP and PC-3) and a benign, modified, prostatic cell line (TP-2), and 2) the extent of PDT-induced cell injury, as determined by electron microscopy (EM) and cell survival.
METHODS - The cell lines were assigned into four treatment groups: group 1, control, no ALA and no light irradiation; group 2, dark control, ALA only; group 3, light control, radiation only; and group 4, PDT, ALA followed by irradiation (630 nm, 3 joules/cm2). The experiments were performed in triplicate. ALA concentration was 50 microg/ml of media in all instances.
RESULTS - Following incubation with ALA, PPIX production was significantly increased in the three cell lines studied, and more notably in the PC-3 cell line. Compared to controls, EM and cell survival studies demonstrated significant mitochondrial damage and decreased survival, respectively, in the cells treated with PDT. This was also more evident in the PC-3 cell line.
CONCLUSIONS - Our results demonstrate that prostate cells differ in their response to ALA-mediated PDT. This response appears to depend on the intracellular production of PPIX and the cell type, i.e., on the functional and structural characteristics of the cell mitochondria. In addition, our results suggest that PDT might be effective at killing prostate cancer cells.
PURPOSE - Photodynamic therapy (PDT), the light activation of photosensitizer dyes for the production of oxygen and other free radical moieties without the generation of heat, has been shown to inhibit the development of experimentally induced intimal hyperplasia. The host response to PDT, a form of vascular injury that results in complete vascular wall cell eradication, is devoid of inflammation and proliferation and promotes favorable vascular wall healing. These effects do not result in intimal hyperplasia and are suggestive of PDT-induced changes in the extracellular matrix (ECM). As a model to better understand the biologic consequences of PDT on the vascular wall matrix proteins, the effect of PDT was studied on the powerful matrix-resident mitogen basic fibroblast factor (bFGF) in vitro.
METHODS - PDT (5 to 200 J/cm2, 100 mW/cm2, 675 nm) was used with the photosensitizer chloroaluminum sulfonated phthalocyanine (5 micrograms/ml) to inactivate bFGF in vitro while 100 J/cm2 of irradiation was administered 24 hours after 5 mg/ml of the photosensitizer was used in vivo. PDT was used on bFGF in solution and on endothelial cell-derived ECM. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used to quantitate bFGF in solution after PDT treatment or after extraction from the ECM by collagenase and heparin. Functional activity of matrix-associated bFGF was assessed by smooth muscle cell mitogenesis by 3H-thymidine incorporation. To demonstrate the in vivo relevance of these observations, immunohistochemical analysis of PDT-treated rat carotid arteries was undertaken.
RESULTS - PDT eliminated detectable levels of bFGF in solution. PDT of ECM significantly reduced matrix-bound bFGF (1.0 +/- 0.6 vs 27.5 +/- 1.3 pg/ml; p < 0.0001). This reduction in bFGF after PDT of the ECM was associated with a decrease in vascular smooth muscle cell mitogenesis (52.4% +/- 4.6%; p < 0.0001) when plated on PDT-treated matrix compared with nontreated matrix. Quantitative replenishment of exogenous bFGF to PDT-treated matrix restored proliferation to baseline levels. PDT of rat carotid arteries demonstrated a loss of bFGF staining compared with control nontreated arteries.
CONCLUSIONS - PDT inactivation of matrix-resident bFGF and possibly other bioactive molecules can provide a mechanism by which PDT suppresses smooth muscle cell proliferation in the vessel wall. This free radical-mediated alteration of matrix may contribute to favorable vascular healing when PDT is used for the inhibition of injury-induced intimal hyperplasia.
PURPOSE - Photodynamic therapy (PDT) has been demonstrated to inhibit experimental intimal hyperplasia and to lead to expedient reendothelialization but negligible repopulation of the vessel media. The mechanism that underlies the differential ingrowth of cells into PDT-treated vessel segments is not understood. Because the extracellular matrix (ECM) is known to modulate specific cell functions, this study was designed to determine whether PDT of isolated ECM affects the function of endothelial cells (ECs) and smooth muscle cells (SMCs).
METHODS - PDT of bovine aortic EC-ECM was performed with chloroaluminum sulfonated phthalocyanine and 675-nm laser light. Control specimens included untreated ECM, ECM-free plates, and ECM exposed to either light or photosensitizer only. Cell function was characterized by attachment, proliferation, and migration of ECs or SMCs that were plated onto identically treated matrixes.
RESULTS - SMC attachment (86% +/- 0.4% vs 95% +/- 0.4%), proliferation (46% +/- 0.5% vs 100% +/- 1.4%), and migration (40% +/- 1.0% vs 100% +/- 0.9%) were significantly inhibited after PDT of ECM when compared with untreated ECM (all p < 0.001). In contrast, PDT of ECM significantly enhanced EC proliferation (129% +/- 6.2% vs 100% +/- 6.2%; p < 0.03) and migration (118% +/- 2% vs 100% +/- 0.8; p < 0.01), but did not affect attachment.
CONCLUSIONS - This report establishes PDT-induced changes in the ECM with a result of inhibition of SMCs and stimulation of EC functions. It provides insight into how PDT-treated arteries can develop favorable EC repopulation without SMC-derived intimal hyperplasia. These findings may help provide a better understanding of the interactions between cells and their immediate environment in vascular remodeling.
Photodynamic therapy is a tumoricidal modality that utilizes an inactive pharmacologic agent that becomes activated on exposure to visible light. Neoplasms selectively retain and accumulate photosensitizers at levels generally higher than surrounding non-neoplastic tissues. The purpose of this study was to establish a testing method for in vitro investigation of the effects of photodynamic therapy on human musculoskeletal neoplasms by examination of the sensitivity of these tumors to photoactivation. Three human musculoskeletal neoplasms were cultured, exposed to the photosensitizer Photofrin, and then studied for their response to photodynamic therapy after laser activation. Giant-cell tumor, dedifferentiated chondrosarcoma, and osteosarcoma were examined with use of strict experimental controls. The photoradiation conditions during photodynamic therapy were kept constant. Cell viability was determined as a function of energy dose. We concluded that the three musculoskeletal tumors were susceptible to in vitro photodynamic therapy and the test system was reproducible. The optimal in vitro nontoxic incubation concentration of Photofrin was 3 micrograms/ml. A differential cytotoxic response to photodynamic therapy was exhibited by the musculoskeletal neoplasms as a function of increased dosages of energy.