Photodynamic Therapy: The Development of New Photosensitisers

ISSN: 1875-5992 (Online)
ISSN: 1871-5206 (Print)

Volume 16, 12 Issues, 2016

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Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry

Formerly: Current Medicinal Chemistry - Anti-Cancer Agents

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Michelle Prudhomme
Universite Blaise Pascal - C.N.R.S
Aubiere Cedex

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Photodynamic Therapy: The Development of New Photosensitisers

Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry, 8(3): 280-291.

Author(s): Mark Wainwright.

Affiliation: School of Pharmacy&Chemistry,John Moores University, Byrom Street, Liverpool L3 3AF UK.


The first 20 years of anticancer photodynamic therapy (PDT) were based on the utility of the oligomeric mixture haematoporphyrin derivative (HpD) in various forms. More recently new derivatives have become available, both porphyrin-derived and employing new chromophores, for example from the phthalocyanine and phenothiazinium families. In addition, a major research effort has been rewarded with the clinical acceptance of the porphyrin precursor 5-aminolaevulinic acid (ALA). New photosensitisers intended for clinical use must exhibit advantageous drug performance profiles compared to the first – generation porphyrin derivatives. This can be seen, in vitro, in improved photophysical properties such as the extension of the useful light absorption spectrum into the near infrared – offering greater tissue penetration - as well as in the synthesis of pure compounds rather than mixtures. In this review, recent developments in photosensitiser families are discussed with respect to in vitro performance indicators and to potential application in oncology.


Photodynamic therapy, porphyrins, phthalocyanines, aminolaevulinic acid, azines.

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Article Details

Volume: 8
Issue Number: 3
First Page: 280
Last Page: 291
Page Count: 12
DOI: 10.2174/187152008783961888
Price: $58

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