Recent advances in functional nanomaterials for light–triggered cancer therapy

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Journal Article
Nano Today, 2018, 19 pp. 146 - 187
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© 2018 Elsevier Ltd Photo–triggered therapeutic modalities for cancer have attracted enormous attention in recent years due to the easily focused and tuned properties of irradiation light that enable the localized treatment with non–invasive, direct and accurate characteristics. In addition, by using new developed functional nanomaterials, different therapeutic modalities can be integrated into a single platform, and co–therapies with dramatically enhanced anti–cancer ability by synergetic therapeutic effects are obtained. In the view of the fast development of anti–cancer strategy, we present an in–depth review of major breakthroughs in recent advanced functional nanomaterials for photo–triggered therapy. This review first summarizes the organic and inorganic photosensitizers for photodynamic therapy (PDT), four kinds of photothermal materials for photothermal therapy (PTT), as well as photo–switchable molecules or photolabile chemical groups bonded materials for chemotherapy. For each part, the therapeutic materials, mechanisms, superiorities and typical representatives are examined extensively. Then, we systematically discuss the optimized multifunctional nanomaterials consist of the above materials for PTT/PDT co–therapy, PTT/chemo co–therapy, PDT/chemo co–therapy and radiotherapy–composed co–therapy etc. And the synergetic therapeutic mechanism, anti–cancer efficiency, safety and design of therapeutic materials are highlighted. Finally, we give an outlook of the future directions of the rapidly growing functional nanomaterials for photo–triggered therapy, and propose several associated challenges and potential solutions.
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