Lighting Up Stage III Lung Cancer: A Russian Study

One of the most promising directions of cancer research is the combination of PDT with conventional techniques, as recently demonstrated in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer.  In a Russian study of 20 stage III lung cancer patients (13 of whom were stage IIIb), all patients received three courses of chemotherapy and endobronchial PDT before surgery.  During the operation, PDT of the surgical margins was carried out.

The pre-surgery treatments led to some tumor shrinkage in all cases; the goal of surgery was the complete tumor removal.  After 18 months, 19 of the 20 patients were alive (one patient had died from gastrointestinal bleeding), and 18 of the 19 survivors had no sign disease recurrence.

Based on this this pilot study, the researchers concluded that the combined use of neoadjuvant chemotherapy and surgery with pre- and intraoperative PDT is a safe and efficacious treatment option for Stage III lung cancer patients, as reported in a 2013 issue of the Russian medical journal Khirurgiia.


Akopov AL, Rusanov AA, Molodtsova VP, Chistiakov IV, Kazakov NV, Urtenova MA, Raĭd M, Papaian GV.  Photodynamic therapy in combined treatment of stage III non-small cell lung carcinoma.  [Article in Russian] Khirurgiia (Mosk). 2013;(3):17-20.

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