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Photodynamic therapy: from molecular effects in model systems toward photodynamic efficiency in cell culture

Grant number: 18/16713-0
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: February 01, 2019 - January 31, 2021
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Physics
Principal Investigator:Pedro Henrique Benites Aoki
Grantee:Pedro Henrique Benites Aoki
Home Institution: Faculdade de Ciências e Letras (FCL-ASSIS). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Assis. Assis , SP, Brazil


This research grant has the general objective of continuing the work of the past Fapesp (2016 / 13280-0) research project, as well as to support the research of the graduate students under my supervision. The project is focused on the photosensitization of lipid membranes and underlying mechanisms of the photodynamic efficiency in the treatment of cancer cells. Specifically, Langmuir and Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) films will mimic the cell membrane of tumor cells, where photosensitizers will be further incorporated and subsequently photo-activated. The goal is to investigate the effects of lipid hydroperoxidation on the physicochemical properties of the membrane, which include surface area increase and cleavage of lipid chains. In addition to the traditional surface pressure measurements (À), vibrational spectroscopy techniques will be applied to the Langmuir (PM-IRRAS) and LB (FTIR) films in order to elucidate the reaction mechanisms at the molecular level. The final goal is to correlate the findings at the molecular scale with photodynamic efficiency in complex systems, involving the in vitro culture of cancer cells. Taken together, these results will shed light on the molecular mechanisms of cell membrane photo-oxidation, which is relevant not only for photodynamic therapy (PDT) applications but also for many other fields of life sciences and health. (AU)

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