Perfluorocarbons therapeutics in modern cancer nanotechnology for hypoxia-induced anti-tumor therapy

Saurabh Satija, Prabal Sharma, Harpreet Kaur, Daljeet Singh Dhanjal, Reena Singh Chopra, Navneet Khurana, Manish Vyas, Neha Sharma, Murtaza M Tambuwala, Hamid A Bakshi, Nitin B Charbe, Flavia C Zacconi, Dinesh Kumar Chellappan, Kamal Dua, Meenu Mehta

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    With an estimated failure rate of about 90%, immunotherapies that are intended for the treatment of solid tumors have caused an anomalous rise in the mortality rate over the past decades. It is apparent that resistance towards such therapies primarily occurs due to elevated levels of HIF-1 (Hypoxia-induced factor) in tumor cells, which are caused by disrupted microcirculation and diffusion mechanisms. With the advent of nanotechnology, several innovative advances were brought to the fore; and, one such promising direction is the use of perfluorocarbon nanoparticles in the management of solid tumors. Perfluorocarbon nanoparticles enhance the response of hypoxia-based agents (HBAs) within the tumor cells and have been found to augment the entry of HBAs into the tumor micro-environment. The heightened penetration of HBAs causes chronic hypoxia, thus aiding in the process of cell quiescence. In addition, this technology has also been applied in photodynamic therapy, where oxygen self-enriched photosensitizers loaded perfluorocarbon nanoparticles are employed. The resulting processes initiate a cascade, depleting tumour oxygen and turning it into a reactive oxygen species eventually to destroy the tumour cell. This review elaborates on the multiple applications of nanotechnology based perfluorocarbon formulations that are being currently employed in the treatment of tumour hypoxia.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4376-4387
    Number of pages12
    JournalCurrent Pharmaceutical Design
    Issue number43
    Early online date30 Aug 2021
    Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 31 Dec 2021

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    Kamal Dua is supported by a project grant from Rebecca L. Cooper Medical Research Foundation and Sydney Partnership for Health, Education, Research and Enterprise (SPHERE).

    Funding Information:
    Author Meenu Mehta has acknowledged the support by the Graduate School of Health and University of Technology Sydney (International Research Training Program Scholarship (IRTP)).

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2021 Bentham Science Publishers.


    • Cancer
    • HBA
    • HIF-1
    • Nanotechnology
    • Perfluorocarbons
    • Tumour hypoxia


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