Brain Tumours

Brain Tumours Treatment with Photodynamic Therapy

The complexity of the human brain and the number of areas where a tumour could develop, make all forms of treatment difficult. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy both have their limitations. Where PDT has a unique role is through the precise targeting of the light. As you will read elsewhere, the PDT procedure only ‘works’ where the drug and light combine. The light delivery mechanisms can target an incredibly precise area. And because PDT does not generate or involve damaging levels of heat, there is no destruction of the connective tissue, and areas where PDT kills cells, new and healthy cells can regenerate after PDT.

PDT trials are on hold at the moment and the teams are investigating a different technique called photodiagnosis (PD) which is photo diagnositc (PD) assisted resection of grade IV Glioblastoma Multiforme with GliolanTM.” “This technique involves using a photosensitive product that patients drink called GliolanTM. Patients take this several hours prior to surgery. GliolanTM is taken up more selectively by tumour cells and glows a pink colour. This enables the neurosurgeon to surgically remove tumour cells that glow and may take away more cancer cells which could slow the return of these tumours. This is now used as a standard treatment option and is not part of a trial.

There are teams at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee and at the Institute of Neurology in London who need further funding.

Many brain tumour patients have already been treated around the world, and most have gained palliative benefits.

The way forward is surgically assisted photodynamic diagnostic procedures. There are centres around the UK that perform this as “standard treatment” and further research is being planned.

If you would like to make contact with the research team undertaking Photo Dynamic (PD) assisted resection of grade IV Glioblastoma Multiforme with GliolanTM “ please email Carol Goodman, Nurse Manager, Scottish Photodynamic Therapy Centre, Photobiology Unit, Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Dundee DD1 9SY.