Experimental photoimmunotherapy of hepatic metastases of colorectal cancer with a 17.1A ,chlorin(e)6 immunoconjugate

M. Del Governatore, M. R. Hamblin, C. R. Shea, I. Rizvi, K. G. Molpus, K. K. Tanabe, T. Hasan

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72 Citations (Scopus)


Photoimmunotherapy (using a monoclonal antibody-targeted photosensitizer and red light) may be a strategy to overcome the limitations inherent in photodynamic therapy of liver tumors. The aims of this study were (a) to test the efficacy of selective treatment of hepatic metastases of colorectal cancer in an orthotopic murine xenograft using the murine monoclonal antibody 17.1A conjugated to the photosensitizer chlorin(e)6, and (b) to compare the tumor response after the same light dose was delivered at two different fluence rates. Based on previous biodistribution studies that had shown that the photoimmunoconjugate with a polyanionic charge had both a higher absolute tumor chlorin(e)6 content and a greater tumor:normal liver ratio than those obtained with a photoimmunoconjugate bearing a polycationic charge, mice were treated 3 h after i.v. injection of the polyanionic 17.1A chlorin(e)6 conjugate or unconjugated photosensitizer. Red light was delivered into the liver tumor by an interstitial fiber, and tumor response end points were total tumor weight in the short term and survival in the long term. There was a highly significant reduction (<20% of controls; P = 0.0035) in the weight of the tumors in the mice treated with photoimmunotherapy, and the median survival increased from 62.5 to 102 days (P = 0.015). Photodynamic therapy with free chlorin(e)6 produced a smaller decrease in tumor weight and a smaller extension of survival, neither of which were statistically significant. A comparison of photoimmunotherapy with 10 J of light delivered at 30 or 309 mW showed that the higher fluence rate prolonged survival significantly more than the lower fluence rate. This may have been because the high fluence rate gave a contribution of laser-induced hyperthermia to the photodamage. Correlation studies showed that the amount of normal liver remaining at necropsy correlated best with survival. Photoimmunotherapy shows efficacy in destroying liver tumors, and future studies should maximize selectivity to minimize the destruction of normal liver.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4200-4205
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Research
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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