Recent Strategies to Develop Innovative Photosensitizers for Enhanced Photodynamic Therapy

Thanh Chung Pham, Van Nghia Nguyen, Yeonghwan Choi, Songyi Lee, Juyoung Yoon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

743 Scopus citations


This review presents a robust strategy to design photosensitizers (PSs) for various species. Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a photochemical-based treatment approach that involves the use of light combined with a light-activated chemical, referred to as a PS. Attractively, PDT is one of the alternatives to conventional cancer treatment due to its noninvasive nature, high cure rates, and low side effects. PSs play an important factor in photoinduced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. Although the concept of photosensitizer-based photodynamic therapy has been widely adopted for clinical trials and bioimaging, until now, to our surprise, there has been no relevant review article on rational designs of organic PSs for PDT. Furthermore, most of published review articles in PDT focused on nanomaterials and nanotechnology based on traditional PSs. Therefore, this review aimed at reporting recent strategies to develop innovative organic photosensitizers for enhanced photodynamic therapy, with each example described in detail instead of providing only a general overview, as is typically done in previous reviews of PDT, to provide intuitive, vivid, and specific insights to the readers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13454-13619
Number of pages166
JournalChemical Reviews
Issue number21
StatePublished - 10 Nov 2021

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© 2021 American Chemical Society.


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