Photodynamic Therapy for Gastrointestinal Cancer

Tomonori Yano, Kenneth K. Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The clinical application of photodynamic therapy (PDT) for gastrointestinal (GI) neoplastic lesions has been developed with appreciation for the great efforts and kind support of Dr. Tom Dougherty and his followers’ contributions. There are several published studies on clinical PDT in the field of GI oncology. Esophageal cancer was one of the first clinical indications for PDT that was approved as an endoscopic procedure in both the United States and Japan. PDT was initially used as a palliative local treatment for patients with obstructive esophageal cancer. PDT is also indicated for eradicative therapy for dysplastic Barret’s esophagus, which is the precursor state of esophageal adenocarcinoma, with the support of level one evidence. In Japan, PDT was approved as a curative treatment for superficial esophageal carcinoma lesions, which are difficult to treat with endoscopic resection. Further, PDT using second-generation photosensitizers is approved for early local failure after radiotherapy, for which treatment with other modalities is difficult. PDT has also been assessed in other GI cancers, including gastric cancer, biliary cancer and pancreatic cancer. In this review, we overview the history and state of PDT for GI cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)517-523
Number of pages7
JournalPhotochemistry and Photobiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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