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Active Targeting of Nano-Photosensitizer Delivery Systems for Photodynamic Therapy of Cancer Stem Cells

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Cancer stem cells are believed to be the basis for tumor initiation, development, metastasis and recurrence; are resistant to most traditional therapies (e.g., chemotherapy and radiotherapy); and have the ability to self-renew, proliferate and differentiate. Photodynamic therapy may be a promising novel treatment for drug-resistant cancer stem cells because of the selectivity of the photosensitizer. One of the most important issues to overcome in photodynamic therapy is the photosensitizer-targeted delivery to tumor cells, especially cancer stem cells. Nano-photosensitizers comprising molecular photosensitizers and water-dispersible nanocarriers with or without moieties possessing the ability for specific binding to cancer cells or cancer stem cells are a promising strategy for active targeted photosensitizer delivery and photodynamic therapy-targeted therapy of tumors. In this review, we highlight current and future prospects for potential strategies based on nanoscience and nanotechnology for nano-photosensitizer-targeted delivery in the photodynamic therapy treatment of cancer cells, especially cancer stem cells.
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Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: April 1, 2015

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  • Journal of Biomedical Nanotechnology (JBN) is a peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journal providing broad coverage in all research areas focused on the applications of nanotechnology in medicine, drug delivery systems, infectious disease, biomedical sciences, biotechnology, and all other related fields of life sciences.
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