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Photosensitiser-gold nanoparticle conjugates for photodynamic therapy of cancer

Garc�a Calavia, Paula; Bruce, Gordon; P�rez-Garc�a, Llu�sa; Russell, David A.


Paula Garc�a Calavia

Gordon Bruce

Llu�sa P�rez-Garc�a

David A. Russell


Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) have been extensively studied within biomedicine due to their biocompatibility and low toxicity. In particular, AuNPs have been widely used to deliver photosensitiser agents for photodynamic therapy (PDT) of cancer. Here we review the state-of-the-art for the functionalisation of the gold nanoparticle surface with both photosensitisers and targeting ligands for the active targeting of cancer cell surface receptors. From the initial use of the AuNPs as a simple carrier of the photosensitiser for PDT, the field has significantly advanced to include: the use of PEGylated modification to provide aqueous compatibility and stealth properties for in vivo use; gold metal-surface enhanced singlet oxygen generation; functionalisation of the AuNP surface with biological ligands to specifically target over-expressed receptors on the surface of cancer cells and; the creation of nanorods and nanostars to enable combined PDT and photothermal therapies. These versatile AuNPs have significantly enhanced the efficacy of traditional photosensitisers for both in vitro and in vivo cancer therapy. From this review it is apparent that AuNPs have an important future in the treatment of cancer.


García Calavia, P., Bruce, G., Pérez-García, L., & Russell, D. A. (2018). Photosensitiser-gold nanoparticle conjugates for photodynamic therapy of cancer. Photochemical & Photobiological Sciences Photochemical and Photobiological Sciences, 17(11), 1534-1552.

Journal Article Type Review
Acceptance Date Aug 7, 2018
Online Publication Date Aug 17, 2018
Publication Date Aug 17, 2018
Deposit Date Feb 25, 2019
Journal Photochemical & Photobiological Sciences
Print ISSN 1474-905X
Electronic ISSN 1474-9092
Publisher Royal Society of Chemistry
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 17
Issue 11
Pages 1534-1552
Keywords Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
Public URL
Additional Information : This document is Similarity Check deposited; : Paula García Calavia (ORCID); : Gordon Bruce (ResearcherID); : Lluïsa Pérez-García (ORCID); : Lluïsa Pérez-García (ResearcherID); : David A. Russell (ORCID); : Single-blind; : Received 27 June 2018; Accepted 7 August 2018; Advance Article published 17 August 2018; Version of Record published 7 November 2018

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