Early Diagnosis of Cancer by Detecting the Chemiluminescence of Hematoporphyrins in Peripheral Blood Lymphocytes

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Early detection and optimal treatment are the most effective means to improve cancer mortality. Mass screening for cancer has yielded a marked reduction of cancer mortality in the United States. Simple and effective methods are expected for screening of malignancy. Hematoporphyrin derivatives (HPDs) are known to accumulate in cancer cells; thus, HPD has been used for local diagnosis and photodynamic therapy of cancer. The lymphocytes of cancer patients also demonstrate the active uptake of HPD and this phenomenon has been applied for the diagnosis of cancer. In the present study, we have developed a novel method for measurement of the chemiluminescence of HPD in peripheral blood lymphocytes. HPD is composed of hematoporphyrin and its oligomers. Seven cancer patients and seven controls were recruited for this study. The primary cancers included two prostate cancers (one without metastasis and the other with lung metastasis), a renal cancer, a lung adenocarcinoma with systemic metastasis, two gallbladder cancers with lung metastasis, and a colon cancer with liver metastasis. HPD in lymphocytes was measured using a highly sensitive chemiluminescence analyzer with laser light irradiation to detect photoemission by <sup>1</sup>O<sub>2</sub> from HPD. The intensity of chemiluminescence exhibited a linear correlation with the concentrations of HPD. In addition, the level of HPD in lymphocytes was significantly higher in cancer patients than that in healthy volunteers (<i>p</i> < 0.05). These results suggest that detection of the chemiluminescence of HPD in lymphocytes could be a sensitive and simple method for cancer diagnosis and screening.


  • Tohoku J. Exp. Med.  

    Tohoku J. Exp. Med. 216(1), 47-52, 2008-09-01 

    Tohoku University Medical Press

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