Design of Photosensitizing Agents for Targeted Antimicrobial Photodynamic Therapy

Maxime Klausen, Muhammed Ucuncu, Mark Bradley

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Photodynamic inactivation of microorganisms has gained substantial attention due to its unique mode of action, in which pathogens are unable to generate resistance, and due to the fact that it can be applied in a minimally invasive manner. In photodynamic therapy (PDT), a non-toxic photosensitizer (PS) is activated by a specific wavelength of light and generates highly cytotoxic reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide (O2-, type-I mechanism) or singlet oxygen (1O2*, type-II mechanism). Although it offers many advantages over conventional treatment methods, ROS-mediated microbial killing is often faced with the issues of accessibility, poor selectivity and off-target damage. Thus, several strategies have been employed to develop target-specific antimicrobial PDT (aPDT). This includes conjugation of known PS building-blocks to either non-specific cationic moieties or target-specific antibiotics and antimicrobial peptides, or combining them with targeting nanomaterials. In this review, we summarise these general strategies and related challenges, and highlight recent developments in targeted aPDT.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5239
JournalMolecules (Basel, Switzerland)
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 10 Nov 2020


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