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Chromosomes are target sites for photodynamic therapy as demonstrated by subcellular laser microirradiation


The present investigation has been undertaken to examine the possibility that the cell nucleus, and specifically the genetic material, is a target site for photodynamic therapy. PTK2 and Hep-2 cells are pretreated with a medium containing 15 microg/ml (0.09 mM) 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA). Individual fluorescence images are recorded for each selected cell using a cooled charge-coupled device (CCD). A laser microbeam system generating 630 nm is used for subcellular-region irradiation of specific targets: chromosomes, the mitotic spindle, the perispindle region and the peripheral cytoplasm. Nuclei of interphase cells are also irradiated. Data comparing the sensitivities of the different subcellular microirradiation sites in ALA-treated mitotic cells demonstrate that under the irradiation conditions used, the chromosome is the most sensitive subcellular target followed by the perispindle region, the peripheral cytoplasm and spindle, and, lastly, the interphase nucleus.

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