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Combination of nanoparticle-induced hyperthermia and photodynamic therapy (PDT) for cancer treatment
Switzerland (Swimsa) - University of Zurich, Zurich
Institute of Anatomy
Prof. Johannes Loffing
Prof. Caroline Maake
Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a non or minimally invasive treatment relying on the ability of a photoactive non-toxic drug (the so called photosensitizer) to generate free radicals or singlet oxygen upon activation with light. These reactive species can oxidize cellular constituents, eventually leading to cell death. PDT has already shown great promise to improve treatment options for cancer patients due to its distinct advantages, including the strictly focused application, the lack of severe side effects, the biocompatibility with other treatment modalities, the option for repeatability, the excellent cosmetic or functional outcome and the fast recovery.
What is the aim of the project?
With the aim to further enhance PDT effects, the project investigates the potential of a combination of PDT with hyperthermia, generated with magentic nanoparticles.
What techniques and methods are used?
Several in-vitro lab methods will be used, mainly focusing on cell culture techniques and bioassays. Depending on stage of the project, experiments will also involve microscopy and molecular biological techniques.
What is the role of the student?
- The student will observe the practical experiments but will be highly involved in the analysis of the results
- The tasks will be done under supervision
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
Survey of the literature, implementation of cell culture techniques (working under sterile conditions, preparation of media, plating cells, freezing cells, feeding cells, viability assays), planning of experiments including required n (power analysis), performing experiments under supervision (the kind of experiments depends on the month when the students comes to our lab because the experiments are running independently from the student), data analyses, recording of experiments, microscopy techniques (light microscopy, fluorescence microscopy etc)
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
No specific theoretical teaching. However, participation in certain courses at the University of Zurich may be possible.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- The student will prepare a scientific report
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
Basic lab experience would be good (e.g. pipetting, simple calculations).
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts: - Medical students - Pre-Medical students from the American-British system - Students in biomedical fields
- Photodynamic Therapy: Past; Present and Future. Chilakamarthi U; Giribabu L. Chem Rec. 2017 Aug;17(8):775-802. doi: 10.1002/tcr.201600121. Epub 2017 Jan 2. Review.
- The potential of photodynamic therapy (PDT)-Experimental investigations and clinical use. Oniszczuk A; Wojtunik-Kulesza KA; Oniszczuk T; Kasprzak K.
- Biomed Pharmacother. 2016 Oct;83:912-929. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2016.07.058. Epub 2016 Aug 10. Review.
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