Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a treatment that uses a drug, called a photosensitizer or photosensitizing agent, and a particular type of light. When photosensitizers are exposed to a specific wavelength of light, they produce a form of oxygen that kills nearby cells.
Each photosensitizer is activated by light of a specific wavelength. This wavelength determines how far the light can travel into the body. Until recently laser light could only penetrate 1 to 2 cm into the body, but with the new technology, penetration can go very deep into the body and by combining specific photosensitizers and wavelengths of light we are able to treat many different areas of the body with PDT.
The Video below explains the Principles of Photodynamic Cancer Therapy with a specific equipment used by our partner clinics.
How is PDT used to treat cancer?
In the first step of PDT for cancer treatment, a photosensitizing agent is injected into the bloodstream. The agent is absorbed by cells all over the body but stays in cancer cells longer than it does in normal cells. Approximately 24 to 72 hours after injection, when most of the agent has left normal cells but remains in cancer cells, the tumor is exposed to light. The photosensitizer in the tumor absorbs the light and produces an active form of oxygen that destroys nearby cancer cells.
In addition to directly eliminating cancer cells, PDT appears to shrink or destroy tumors in two other ways. The photosensitizer can damage blood vessels in the tumor, thereby preventing cancer from receiving necessary nutrients. PDT also may activate the immune system to attack the tumor cells.
The light used for PDT in our partner clinics come from a laser as explained in the video above. Laser light can be directed through fiber optic cables, thin fibers that transmit light, to deliver light to areas inside the body. In our treatment, we are using a Nanoparticle technology where the photosensitizer is embedded in liposomes allowing a treatment with infrared light penetrating deep into the body.
PDT is usually performed as an outpatient procedure and can be repeatedly performed alone or may be used with other therapies, such as surgery, radiation therapy or chemotherapy.
Extracorporeal photopheresis (ECP) is a type of PDT in which a machine is used to collect the patient’s blood cells, treat them outside the body with a photosensitizing agent, expose them to light, and then return them to the patient. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved ECP to help lessen the severity of skin symptoms of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma that has not responded to other therapies. Studies are underway to determine if ECP may have some application for other blood cancers, and also to help reduce rejection after transplants.
Photosensitizer Combination with Medical Laser Therapy
A curcumin therapy can be combined with medical laser therapy very successfully because curcumin acts as a photosensitizer and absorbs light in the blue range.
The active ingredient curcumin is derived from the rhizome of the medicinal plant Curcuma (Curcuma longa; turmeric), which belongs to the ginger family. In India and Southeast Asia, Curcuma has been used in Ayurveda, one of the world’s oldest medical systems, since thousands of years. And for good reason: Curcuma has an extremely diverse potential and can support the treatment of numerous medical conditions. It also contains phytonutrients (polyphenols)which have various health effects.
Ultrapure + Pro
The previous version UltraCur+ already had an extremely high bioavailability due to a special protein binding. But we did not want to be satisfied with that. Instead of a whey protein, the new version contains N-acetylcysteine (NAC, ACC), a synthetically produced chemical compound and derivative of the naturally occurring amino acid cysteine. It has anti-inflammatory and detoxifying properties and is considered an antioxidant.
NAC is quickly absorbed by the body. One capsule of the pro version (600 mg) contains 60 mg of pure curcumin and corresponds to 4 capsules of the former product UltraCur+.
The reason why we changed the formula is that N-acetylcysteine can bind 4x more curcumin than the whey protein. For a patient, this means a lower intake amount and an even better bioavailability. Our experimental data shows that UltraCur+Pro can achieve a more than four times higher curcumin concentration in the plasma which means that the absorption could also be improved.
Preventive: 1 Capsule/day | now in the upcoming cold and flu season!
Therapiebegleitend: 2 Capsules/Tag
In Combination with Laser-Therapy (PDT): 4 Capsules/Tag
Curcumin’s absorption maximum is at about 440 nm. It even acts phototoxic in low concentrations (for example to bacteria), and also proapoptotic, anti-inflammatory, immune-stimulating, radioprotective, chemoprotective, antitumoral, antimetastatic, anti-angiogenetic, radiosensitizing and chemosensitizing.
Thus, curcumin is a potent photosensitizer for PDT in the treatment of psoriasis, tumors, infections and other diseases.
In addition, the blue laser improves micro circulation by NO release and has strong anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects, which in turn accelerate the healing process and contribute to pain relief.
We are providing with our partner clinics in Germany Photodynamic Cancer Therapy. For further details please contact us.
Sources: The National Cancer Institute, WeberMed
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