In their quest for a cure for malignant mesothelioma, researchers have worked to find an effective way to kill its aggressive tumor cells without causing systemic toxicity or harming surrounding tissue. Among the treatments being investigated is photodynamic therapy, which uses light to activate drugs that kill tumor cells. A four-year National Institute of Health (NIH) grant that will explore the use of this protocol has just been announced by one of the companies whose software tool will be involved.
Photodynamic Therapy Offers New Hope for Mesothelioma Patients
The NIH study will specifically investigate the diagnosis and treatment of malignant mesothelioma with photodynamic therapy. Participants include Simphotek, Inc, an early-stage biotechnology company whose computational software tool, Dosie™, will be used, as well as researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
The scientists will work together to develop, evaluate and then test an integrated light delivery and dosimetry platform that will allow physicians treating mesothelioma to quantitatively measure dosages of photodynamic therapy. The Penn researchers have already developed hardware that measures dosimetry and light source tracking, while the software company’s platform measures light distribution throughout the pleural cavity when the protocol is used.
Combining Technologies May Deliver More Effective Mesothelioma Treatment
The researchers hope that combining the two technologies when treating mesothelioma patients with photodynamic therapy will yield better results. Current techniques have been limited by the fact that light doses are the only quantitative measurements that have been used. The additional measurement capabilities will tell physicians exactly how light impacts and activates light-activated drugs, and will allow greater control that will give researchers the ability to exactly replicate positive results.
Patients diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma rely on innovation to deliver more effective treatments that will extend their lives. For more information on state-of-the-art treatments and how you or your loved one can access them, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today. We can be reached at 1-800-692-8608.