In a significant development, researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Hyderabad, have found that adding light and heat to anti-cancer chemicals will help in the treatment of cancer. Until now, cancer patients have been treated with chemotherapy, using powerful chemicals to kill cancer cells.
The IIT team has found that adding light and heat or photothermal therapy to chemotherapy will kill cancer or malignant cells, which will help in providing relief to the patients.
IIT Hyderabad Cancer Treatment has also included a photo (light) and heat (thermal) in addition to the usual chemicals (chemotherapy) in the model, which gives the much-needed synergy effect for the anti-cancer treatment currently being adopted worldwide. Also, the chemicals used in chemotherapy by the IIT team derived from natural sources, thus having a little adverse effect.
The team at IIT Hyderabad, along with their counterparts from IIT Bombay and Bose Institute, Kolkata, developed new anti-cancer treatments. During the research, the team found that a synergy combination of photothermal therapy and chemotherapy showed efficacy in fighting cancer cells — the result of the research recently published in the issue of the science journal, Nanoscale.
Combination therapy, which combines more than one therapeutic process, is increasingly being considered for the treatment of cancer. It can deal with a variety of cancer cells (different types) in addition to providing synergistic therapeutic effects. Dr. RR Arvind Kumar informed us that he is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, IIT, Hyderabad. Their team included A Tejaswini, P Deepak Bhardwaj, Rafiq Ahmed Khan, Syed Besaruddin Alvi, Rohit Srivastava, Mahadeb Pal, and Nooruddin Khan besides Arvind Kumar.
Chemotherapy involves the use of chemicals in photothermal therapy materials that convert light into heat, directed to the tumor. It destroys cancer cells. The team has used an iodine dye (IR780) to kill malignant cells.
He also said that the development of effective therapies for cancer tissue without damaging the surrounding healthy cells is the ultimate challenge in the fight against cancer. The IIT team said that current methods of cancer treatment such as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy also severely affect healthy tissues. Combined photothermal and chemotherapy holds significant promise for enhanced therapeutic benefit with little or no side effects on cancer patients.