Background and Objectives
There has been a dramatic increase in photothermal therapy as a minimally invasive treatment modality for cancer treatment due to the development of novel nanomaterials as the light absorption agents. Single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) with strong optical absorption in the broad visible and near IR offer unique advantages for photothermal cancer therapy. A broad range of wavelengths can be used for the treatment with SWNTs, whereas conventional photothermal therapeutic agent is designed to absorb light only near one selected wavelength. The objective of this study is to validate the hypothesis that intratumoral injected SWNTs can absorb 785 nm near IR laser light and generate significant local hyperthermia to destroy tumors.
Study Design/Materials and Methods
SCCVII tumor in C3H/HeN mice was exposed to 785-nm laser after intratumoral injection of SWNTs with different light and SWNTs dose combinations. The temperatures of the tumor with laser irradiation were monitored. In vivo and ex vivo Raman spectra in different organs were obtained with a rapid Raman system. Tumor responses (tumor volume and mouse survival) were documented daily after treatment up to day 45 to assess the effectiveness of the treatment.
The temperature within the tumors increased in a light- and SWNTs-dose dependent manner. Squamous cell carcinomas can be eradicated at a moderate light irradiance and fluence (200 mW/cm2 and 120 J/cm2). This light dose is also comparable to those used with photodynamic therapy. Tissue Raman spectroscopy measurements revealed that SWNTs remained localized in the tumor even 3 months after injection but was not found in other organs.
This animal study represents a significant step forward towards the goal of advancing SWNTs based photothermal cancer therapy into clinical applications. Lasers Surg. Med. 42:798–808, 2010 © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.