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Nanostructured Third Generation Photosensitizers for Anticancer Photodynamic Therapy pp. 39-50 $100.00
Authors:  (Luis Alexandre Muehlmann, João Paulo Figueiró Longo and Ricardo Bentes de Azevedo, Laboratory of Nanobiotechnology, Department of Genetics and Morphology, Institute of Biological Sciences, University of Brasília, Brazil)
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is an approved cancer treatment in the USA, Brazil, China, and several countries in the European Union. It has been successfully used as an alternative treatment for superficial malignant tumors, such as skin, esophagus, and oral cancer. The basis of this therapy is a photochemical reaction promoted by photosensitizers (PS) when irradiated with light at specific wavelengths. This photoactivation, in presence of oxygen, induce the production of a series of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which are the cytotoxic agents involved in the elimination of cancer cells. In despite of the good clinical outcomes presented by the existing PS, some important drawbacks still remain to be solved. The 1st generation porphyrins show prolonged skin phototoxicity, extended retention in the host organism, low extinction coefficient and absorption peak at short wavelengths. The 2nd generation porphyrins present improved characteristics in comparison to the 1st generation PS, but still show inconvenient pharmacokinetics properties and loss of photodynamic activity in aqueous media. In order to overcome some of these drawbacks, the association of these PS molecules to specific carriers has been suggested by some researchers. This strategy resulted in the 3rd generation porphyrins, which show improved activity against malignant tumors. A brief review of the literature shows that nanostructures are increasingly being used as carriers for the development of 3rd generation PS. In this chapter we will present a review of the most important nanostructured drug delivery systems used as carriers for PS in the field of anticancer PDT. 

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Nanostructured Third Generation Photosensitizers for Anticancer Photodynamic Therapy pp. 39-50