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1 April 2001 Interaction Between Photodynamic Therapy and BCG Immunotherapy Responsible for the Reduced Recurrence of Treated Mouse Tumors
Mladen Korbelik, Jinghai Sun, Jeffrey J. Posakony
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Subcutaneous mouse EMT6 tumors were treated by individual or combined regimens of a single Bacillus Calmette–Guérin (BCG) vaccine administration and photodynamic therapy (PDT). Six clinically relevant photosensitizers characterized by different action mechanisms were used: Photofrin, benzoporphyrin derivative, tetra(m-hydroxyphenyl)chlorin (foscan), mono-l-aspartyl-chlorin e6, lutetium texaphyrin or zinc phthalocyanine. Irrespective of the type of photosensitizer used, the optimized BCG protocols improved the cure rate of PDT-treated tumors. This indicates that the interaction does not take place during the early phase of tumor ablation but at later events involved in preventing tumor recurrence. Beneficial effects on tumor cure were observed even when the BCG injection was delayed to 7 days after PDT. The accumulation of activated myeloid cells that markedly increases in tumors treated by Photofrin-based PDT was not additionally affected by BCG treatment. However, the incidence of immune memory T cells in tumor-draining lymph nodes that almost doubled at 6 days after Photofrin-PDT further increased close to three-fold with adjuvant BCG. This suggests that BCG immunotherapy amplifies the T-lymphocyte–mediated immune response against PDT-treated tumors. Since both these modalities are established for the treatment of superficial bladder carcinomas, use of their combination for this condition should be clinically tested.

Mladen Korbelik, Jinghai Sun, and Jeffrey J. Posakony "Interaction Between Photodynamic Therapy and BCG Immunotherapy Responsible for the Reduced Recurrence of Treated Mouse Tumors," Photochemistry and Photobiology 73(4), 403-409, (1 April 2001).<0403:IBPTAB>2.0.CO;2
Received: 7 November 2000; Accepted: 1 January 2001; Published: 1 April 2001

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