The combination of chemotherapy and radiotherapy towards more efficient drug delivery

Wei Cao, Yuwei Gu, Myriam Meineck, and Huaping Xu

Chem. Asian J., 2014, 9, 48-57.

Research on anticancer therapies has advanced significantly in recent years. New therapeutic platforms that can further improve the health of patients are still highly demanded. We propose the idea of combining regular chemotherapy with radiation therapy to minimize side effects as well as increase drug-delivery efficiency. In this Focus Review, we seek to provide an overview of recent advances that can combine chemotherapy and radiotherapy. We begin by reviewing the current state of systems that can combine chemotherapy and gamma radiation. Among them, diselenide-containing polymers are highlighted as sensitive drug-delivery vehicles that can disassemble under gamma radiation. Then X-ray responsive materials as promising alternative systems are summarized, including X-ray responsive drug-delivery vehicles, prodrugs that can be activated by X-rays, and radiation-site-targeting systems. Finally, we describe strategies that involve phototherapies.

Cao W Asian 2014