Journal of Biotechnology & Biomaterials
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Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is an approved clinical treatment with minimal invasiveness for different types of cancers. It
has the advantage of high selectivity towards tumor tissue and lack of severe and systemic complications with the possibility
of harmless repetitive applications. Its mechanism of action involves activation of a photosensitizer (PS) by an appropriate
monochromatic light source with long wavelength for deeper tissue penetration. Chlorophylls are photosynthetic pigments
present in all organisms that convert light energy into chemical energy. The tetrapyrrolic ring structure of chlorophylls show
high level of light absorption in the red region of visible light, activation of chlorophyllin derivatives results into generation
of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) that cause tumor cells toxicity and subsequent tumor regression. Therefore, PDT has been
used for targeting several accessible tumors. It has been also used in treatment of precancerous and cancerous dermatological
diseases. In our studies, we were able to prove the distinctive role of chlorophyllin derivatives as highly efficient photosensitizers
at both in vitro and in vivo PDT approaches. In comparison to the conventional chemotherapeutic drugs, no major alterations
to the normal physiological condition have been detected. Additionally, successful PDT approaches in tumor cells killing
were also achieved via liposomal delivery system of chlorophyllin derivatives. Mechanisms underlying PDT mediated tumor
cells killing and in vivo tumor regression have been also investigated. Attempts towards the development of an efficient drug
delivery system for improved tissue permeation, has been also conducted in an established murine tumor model for possible
future clinical applications.
Iman Emam Omar Gomaa has completed her BSc in Biology at the Faculty of Science, Cairo University. She has obtained her Master’s degree from Panum Institute, Copenhagen University and completed her PhD at the Medical School of the Technical University of Munich, Germany. She did four years of Postdoctoral studies at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, NY, USA and the Faculty of Medicine, Marie Curie University, France. Currently she is an Associate Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the Biotechnology Sector, Faculty of Pharmacy and Biotechnology, German University in Cairo. She has published more than 20 papers in reputed journals.