Novel Drug for Cancer Diagnostics and Photodynamic Treatment


Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is well-known in treating cancer where cancer cells can be safely radiated.  This is especially true for cancers like skin cancer, prostate cancer and bladder cancer. However, only a few photosensitizer drugs (PD) for PDT such as Photofrin® Porfimer sodium (Photofrin®), Temoporfin (Foscan®), Motexafin lutetium, Palladium bacteriopheophorbide, Purlytin®, Verteporfin (Visudyne®), Talaporfin (Laserphyrin®) are approved by FDA or under-clinical trials.


Statistics shows that Australia has the highest prevalence of skin cancer and is estimated that 37-55% Australian are affected in the global market study on PDT. The growing prevalence of skin cancer in other countries like the US and the UK is fast and therefore it drives the revenue growth of the PDT market. In light of large demand in PDs and unmet need for PD’s improvement in terms of cancer cell specificity, depth of light penetration and safety, we have developed a drug which is used for two-photon absorption photodynamic therapy.


The drug is porphyrin-lanthanide complexes with specific functional groups which are conjugated with carefully chosen peptides so as to increase cancer cells specificity. In-house studies showed that the drug is able to significantly kill cancer cells without attacking normal cells and can give responsive emission for diagnostics. We have a portfolio of granted and pending patents in the US, Europe, Taiwan, China and Hong Kong. Currently, we are seeking partners to collaborate and bring this drug to the next stage of clinical trials.



The drug is safe as it is used at a lower light irradiation (i.e. 10 J/cm2 vs standard dose of 50 J/cm2) and can be used with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for early-stage disease diagnosis. It is less invasive when comparing to positron emission tomography (PET) and X-ray computer tomography.


With the MRI, the drug provides high-resolution images for accurate diagnosis of cancer.  Besides, it will only attack cancer cells instead of normal cells. Therefore, it will not induce adverse effects in patients during and after the treatment.



The drug can be used for early-stage cancer diagnosis and killing cancer cells in-situ. 



Benefits of our drug include:

  • Reliable, minimally invasive clinical treatment for cancer patients
  • Cancer cell-specific and in-situ monitoring
  • Safe


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Published on
Nov 26, 2021
Updated on
Nov 26, 2021
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