Photoradiation Therapy of Human Tumors

  • T. J. Dougherty
  • D. G. Boyle
  • K. R. Weishaupt
Part of the Photobiology book series (PB)


Apparently the earliest attempt to use light-activated materials to treat human cancer was in 1903, when Jesionek and Tappenier used topical eosin, activated by white light, on skin tumors (1). Although not well documented, some positive results were indicated. However, no subsequent clinical work, by these workers or others, was reported until the mid-1970s, when Kelly and Snell (2) and Dougherty et al. (3–5) both used a hematoporphyrin derivative—a preparation first introduced by Lipson et al. (6)—as sensitizing dye. Current interest in the use of in vivo light-activated dyes to treat malignant tumors began in the early 1970s in several laboratories. Diamond et al. reported that hematoporphyrin (not the hematoporphyrin derivative of Lipson), administered parenterally and activated in vivo with white light, caused destruction of glioma tumors transplanted subcutaneously in rats (7). About the same time, Dougherty reported that fluorescein (given intraperitoneally) could be activated in vivo by 488-nm light to reduce the growth rate of a mammary tumor transplanted into mice (8). Neither group reported complete tumor control, however, until 1975, when Dougherty showed that hematoporphyrin derivative, given parenterally, could be activated by light in the red region of the spectrum (to increase light penetration into tissue) to cause complete eradication of spontaneous or transplanted mammary tumors in mice and rats (9). Tomson et al. demonstrated that acridine orange fed to mice accumulated in transplanted tumors and caused their destruction following local exposure to blue-green light from an argon laser (10).


Mammary Tumor Skin Reaction Mycosis Fungoides Light Dose HeNe Laser 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Jesionek, A., and Tappenier, V. H. (1903): Zur Behandlung des Hautearcinomes mit fluoreszierenden Stoffen. Munch. Med. Wochenschr. 41:2042–2044.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Kelly, J. F., and Snell, M. E. (1976): Hematoporphyrin derivative. A possible aid in the diagnosis and therapy of carcinoma of the bladder. J. Urol. 115:150–151.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Dougherty, T. J. (1977): Phototherapy of human tumors. In: Research in Photobiology, edited by A. Castellani, pp. 435–446. Plenum Press, New York.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Dougherty, T. J., Kaufman, J., Goldfarb, A., et al. (1978): Photoradiation therapy for the treatment of malignant tumors. Cancer Res. 38:2628–2635.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Dougherty, T. J., Lawrence, G., Kautman, J., et al. (1979): Photoradiation in the treatment of recurrent breast carcinoma. J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 62:231–237.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Lipson, R., Baldes, E., and Olsen, A. (1961): The use of a derivative of hematoporphyrin in tumor detection. J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 26:1–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Diamond, I., Granelli, S. G., McDonagh, A. F., et al. (1972): Photodynamic therapy of malignant tumors. Lancet 2:1175–1177.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Dougherty, T. J. (1974): Activated dyes as anti-tumor agents. J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 52:1 133–1336.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Dougherty, T. J., Grindey, G. B., Fiel, R., et al. (1977): Photoradiation therapy II. Cure of animal tumors with hematoporphyrin and light. J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 55:115–121.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Tomson, S. H., Emmett, E. A., and Fox, S. H. (1974): Photoradiation of mouse epithelial tumors after oral acridine orange and argon laser. Cancer Res. 34:3124–3127.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Gomer, C. J., and Dougherty, T. J. (1979): Determination of [3H]- and [14C] hematoporphyrin derivative distribution in malignant and normal tissue. Cancer Res. 39:146–151.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Gregorie, H. B., Horger, E. A., and Ward, J. (1968): Hematoporphyrin derivative fluorescence in malignant neoplasms. Ann. Surg. 167:820–827.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Lipson, R. L., Baldes, E. J., and Olsen, A. M. (1964): Further evaluation of the use of hematoporphyrin derivative as a new aid for the endoscopic detection of malignant disease. Dis. Chest 46:676–679.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Profio, A. E., and Dioron, D. R. (1977): A feasibility study of the use of fluorescence bronchoscopy for localization of small lung tumors. Phys. Med. Biol. 22:949–957.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Dioron, D. R., Profio, A. E., Vincent, R. et al. (1979): Fluorescence bronchoscopy for detection of lung cancer. Chest 76:27–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Kinsey, J. F., Cortese, D. A., and Sanderson, D. R. (1978). Detection of hematoporphyrin fluorescence during fiberoptic bronchoscopy of localize early bronchogenic carcinoma. Mayo Clin. Proc. 53:594–600.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Oginsky, E. L., Green, G. S., Griffith, D. G., et al. (1959): Lethal photosensitization of bacteria with 8-methoxypsoralen to long wave length ultraviolet radiation. J. Bacteriol. 78:821–833.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    DeMol, N. J., and Beijersbergen Van Henegouwen, G. M. J. (1979): Formation of singlet molecular oxygen by 8-methoxypsoralen. Photochem. Photobiol. 30:331–335.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Weishaupt, K. R., and Dougherty, T. J. (1976): Identification of singlet oxygen as the cytotoxic agent in photo-inactivation of a murine tumor. Cancer Res. 36:2326–2329.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Moan, J., Pettersen, E. O., and Christensen, T. (1979): The mechanism of photodynamic inactivation of human cells in-vitro in the presence of hematoporphyrin. Br. J. Cancer 39:398–409.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Kelly, J. F., Snell, M. E., and Berenbaum, M.(1975): Photodynamic destruction of human bladder carcinoma. Br. J. Cancer 31:237–244.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. J. Dougherty
    • 1
  • D. G. Boyle
    • 1
  • K. R. Weishaupt
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Radiation BiologyRoswell Park Memorial InstituteBuffaloUSA

Personalised recommendations