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Past Research Projects
NG Photodynamic Therapy
PDT as a method of cancer treatment has been used exclusively in the treatment of superficial tumours due to the limitations of the laser light to penetrate into deep tissues.
The NIIM NGPDT clinical trial investigated the efficacy of Next Generation PDT light delivery technology in conjunction with a newly developed photosensitising agent in penetrating to cancers of deep tissues. The trial concluded in 2012 and results were published in 2013, you can view the published results at f1000 Research here. Please be aware that the Photodynamic Therapy clinical trial has ENDED. NIIM is not accepting participants for these research projects.
Sono-PDT for Prostate Cancer
Sono-photodynamic therapy (SPDT) utilises both sound and light frequencies to damage and destroy tumors. A sensitising agent primes the tumor cells to specific frequencies, but has no effect on regular, healthy cells.
Administration of SPDT through localised and whole body routes then causes a reaction within the sensitised tumor cells, which results in formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), destroying the tumor mass. The therapy produces minimal side effects and does not damage surrounding tissues. The SPDT clinical trial treated men with prostate cancer who had not responded to previous treatment. The trial concluded in 2012 and results were published in 2013, you can view the published results here. Please be aware that the Photodynamic Therapy clinical trial has ENDED. NIIM is not accepting participants for these research projects.
Urinalysis and Prostate Cancer
Volatile organic compounds in the urine of men with prostate cancer
Donald Murphy, Brian Meade, Victor Lee and Avni Sali in conjunction with Geelong Hospital, Geelong, Australia
Recently, Cornu et al.(2011) reported that dogs can sniff out prostate cancer patients. In our study the urine of 5 prostate cancer patients was collected before and 3 months after prostatectomy. PSA levels were all <0.04 ng/ml after radical surgery. The urine samples were analysed independently by gas chromatography and mass spectrometry(GC-MS), and the volatile organic compounds(VOCs) profiles compared pre- and post-surgery. There were 9 prominent peaks in all samples but only 2 peaks were decreased significantly after surgery in 3 out of 5 patients. The remaining 2 patients showed equivocal changes in these 2 peaks. The results indicate a clear difference in the VOCs in the urine of men before and after prostatectomy, and support further investigations into the identity of VOCs that may be prostate cancer specific. The results also lend support to the work of Cornu et.al. and may provide an additional screening test for prostate cancer.
Cornu JN, Cancel-Tassin G, Ondet V, Girardet C and Cussenot O(2011). Olfactory Detection of Prostate Cancer by Dogs Sniffing Urine: A Step Forward in Early Diagnosis. European Urology Vol. 59, 197-201.
Meditation and Cortisol
In conjunction with Sri Bala Ratnam and the Vibrational Breath Therapy Meditation Course, this study investigated the effects of meditation and its associated practices, such as deep breathing, relaxation and group discussion. Participants were surveyed for self-reported feelings of physical health and mental and emotional well being. At the commencement and conclusion of the 12 week meditation course, participants were evaluated for saliva levels of cortisol, a hormone that is closely associated with acute and chronic stress. At the completion of the study, most participants were found to have decreased cortisol levels and an improved self-reported health and well being score. Article in publication.