Vega, D. (2015). DESIGN, SYNTHESIS AND CHARACTERIZATION OF MULTIFUNCTIONAL REDOX-RESPONSIVE PORPHYRIN-BASED POLYSILSESQUIOXANE NANOMATERIALS FOR PHOTODYNAMIC THERAPY. Unc Charlotte Electronic Theses And Dissertations.
Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) is a minimally invasive clinically approved cancertreatment that was first applied in the early 20th century. PDT is an attractive alternative when compared to chemotherapy and radiation therapy due to the lack of harmful side effects associated with these modalities. This treatment is based on the therapeutic effect of reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated after irradiation to activate a light-sensitive molecule called a photosensitizer (PS). Despite the advantages of PDT for cancer treatment, there are some drawbacks with current PS molecules such as inadequate energy absorption, poor solubility in water, and the inability to target tumor cells. Nanoparticles (NPs) are promising materials to be utilized for PDT. NPs have the ability to be target-specific towards tumor tissue, biocompatible and biodegradable. However, current nanocarriers do not show the optimal PDT response due to self-quenching and low singlet oxygen generation. The main target of this project is to develop stimuli-responsive hybrid nanoparticles based on tetrakis(carboxy)phenyl porphyrin (TCPP) derivatives with an enhanced ability to carry and deliver large amount of PSs to improve the PDT effect. This platform will be further functionalized with polyethylene glycol (PEG) and a targeting ligand, Folic acid (FA) to improve its biocompatibility and target specificity.