Seed Grants 2018

Image-guided photodynamic priming to prevent brain tumor recurrence

Graeme F. Woodworth (UMB, School of Medicine), Huang-Chiao Huang (UMD, School of Engineering), and Yu Chen (UMD, School of Engineering)

The poor prognosis for patients with glioblastoma is a result of the fact that most therapeutics are unable to reach invading cancer cells deep within the brain and well beyond the margin of surgical resection. To prevent tumors from recurring, researchers at UMD and UMB are using a sub-cytotoxic photochemistry-based approach (photodynamic priming, or PDP) to identify and treat these brain-invading cancer cells. PDP is designed to improve chemotherapy delivery, reduce chemoresistance, and thereby inhibit tumor recurrence and improve overall survival. Optical imaging strategies will be developed to facilitate longitudinal monitoring of drug delivery during intracranial PDP. This research is the first step to evaluate the safety and efficacy of PDP in advanced pre-clinical models of glioblastoma.