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Annotated Bibliography: Cancer Treatment

This annotated bibliography is focused on the research question: How is laser being used to treat cancer? 

Abo-Neima, S. E., & Elsehly, E. M. (2022). Cancer treatment by laser and electrochemical therapy combined with magnetic nanoparticles as potent therapy against Ehrlich ascites carcinoma. BioNanoScience, 12(3), 851–866.

Abo-Neima and Elsehly investigate the effectiveness of various therapies, including photodynamic laser, methotrexate drug (MXT), direct current electrotherapy (DC), magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) and their combinations, used to treat cancer. The combination of the therapies is a more effective and potent treatment against Ehrlich ascites carcinoma than a single treatment, implying that the combination could be used as a prospective cancer treatment. The authors demonstrate how to use the therapies and their combination to determine their effectiveness in the treatment of Ehrlich ascites carcinoma. They studied the different parts of mice, including liver enzymes, kidney and kidney function, and histology of the tumour tissue in the treatment group. The spread of MNPs into the tumour tissue generates reactive oxygen, leading to the elimination of the cancer cell. The combination of MNPs and MTX drugs combined with photo-electrotherapy revealed high performance for cancer treatment. Thus, mixed treatment revealed the combination of therapies is effective in the treatment of cancer tumours. The text is written for professionals in the biomedical sector and students who are studying health sciences. The purpose of the text is to inform the target audience about how effective treatment of cancer. The text is fact related and accurate because the authors reference existing literature (peer-reviewed articles).

American Cancer Society (2020). “Laser Treatment for Cancer.” American Cancer Society.

The article explains how lasers are used to treat different types of cancers, such as cancer of the colon and rectum, skin pre-cancers and cancers, and for treating cancers that have spread to the lung from other parts of the body, among others. In the article, there are different types of lasers, including low-level laser therapy (LLLT), used in treating several kinds of cancers, leading to the treatment of cancer-related side effects with lasers. The article also looks at the benefits and limitations of laser treatment. Specifically, the article’s content is relevant because it discusses the two main ways how lasers are used to treat cancer. The ways include shrinking and destroying a tumour with heat and activating a chemical known as a photosensitizing agent, killing only the cancer cells. The article adds that although lasers can be used alone to treat cancer, they can be combined with other cancer treatment techniques, such as radiation therapy and chemotherapy, to increase their effectiveness. Lastly, the information provided in the article is accurate since the author used timely and relevant by referencing the work of other writers in the biomedical profession.

Pang, S., Kapur, A., Zhou, K., Anastasiadis, P., Ballirano, N., Kim, A. J., Winkles, J. A., Woodworth, G. F., & Huang, H. C. (2022). Nanoparticle‐assisted, image‐guided laser interstitial thermal therapy for cancer treatment. WIREs Nanomedicine and Nanobiotechnology, 14(5).

Pang and colleagues argue that although laser interstitial thermal therapy (LITT) systems are products of advancements in image-guided technology to treat unresectable tumours to help prolong overall patient survival, they have limitations in the context of brain tumours. As a result, they reviewed nanoparticles that eradicate LITT’s complications. They focus on: the types of organic and inorganic nanoparticles for LITT; studies that investigated in vitro, ex vivo, and in silico nanoparticles’ effect on light–tissue interactions; and the role of nanoparticle formulations in advancing clinically relevant image-guided technologies for LITT. The authors explain that MRI-guided laser interstitial thermal therapy has been used to treat brain and non-central nervous system (non-CNS) tumours. They cite Patel and Chiang (2014) to illustrate how LITT is performed to treat brain tumours, but they noted that LITT has complications for healthy tissues. To lower such complications, the authors reviewed the roles of organic and inorganic nanoparticles for LITT, in vitro, ex vivo, and in silico nanoparticles’ effect on light–tissue interactions in treating cancer. In the article, there is no evidence of bias, and it is timely and relevant since it refers to existing literature.

National Cancer Institute (NCI). (2022, June). Photodynamic therapy to treat cancer. NIH. Retrieved September 3, 2022, from

The article by NCI explores the use of photodynamic therapy, a treatment that uses a drug activated by light, named a photosensitizer, for the treatment of cancer by killing cancerous cells. Photodynamic therapy is utilized for treatment and relieving symptoms of different types of cancers and pre-cancers, including actinic keratosis, Barret esophagus, basal cells skin cancer, and non-small cell lung cancer. The article also explains how photodynamic therapy treats cancer by killing cancerous cells to stop the growth of cancer and damaging blood vessels in the tumour, preventing it from receiving the blood it requires to keep growing. NCI’s article has relevant content to my research project because it explains how photodynamic therapy is administered to treat cancer. In the treatment of cancer, photodynamic therapy is a two-step process, requiring a patient to receive a photosensitizer and then the tumour to be exposed to the light source. The article reveals the benefits of treating photodynamic therapy that include limiting the damage to healthy cells and does not cause scarring for people with skin cancers and pre-cancers. Finally, the authors ground their research in previous literature and theory to illustrate the benefits and drawbacks of using lasers to treat cancers.

National Institutes of Health. (2011). Targeted light therapy destroys cancer cells. United States Department of Health and Human Services.

The article suggests that further research is needed for the developed noninvasive technique that uses light to selectively wipe out cancerous cells in mice without harming surrounding tissue to be used to treat tumours in humans. Although three major types of cancer therapy, chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation,, are effectively destroying cancerous tissues, they tend to damage healthy tissues, making researchers seek therapies that do not affect neighbouring healthy cells but only tumour cells. The article explains that one of the noninvasive techniques used to treat cancers without side effects on healthy cells is monoclonal antibody (mAb) therapy. Therapy treats cancer by destroying cancer cells by latching them onto specific proteins on the cell surface without the side effects. In general, the article is relevant, current, and accurate since it refers to works from other works, such as Kobayashi.

YouTube. (2021). How lasers are used to treat cancer. YouTube. Retrieved September 19, 2022, from

In the video, lasers are presented as effective treatment techniques for treating cancer even though it been used in various medical procedures in the field, such as oncology. The specified laser techniques used for cancers in the video include carbon dioxide lasers, Nd: YAG lasers, and argon lasers. The benefits of using lasers to treat cancer, according to this video, include offering high precision and reducing the risk of infections; they do not require large incisions and focus on the light through the small opening, and the healing time when compared to other treatments of cancer. Further, the video is applicable to the research project because it explains the use of lasers in treating cancer. The video also explained different types of lasers used to treat cancers and their benefits to cancer patients compared to other treatment methods, such as chemotherapy and surgery. The strengths of the video include the inclusion of benefits and disadvantages of using lasers to treat cancer. However, the video fails to provide detailed information on how to use the various types of lasers to treat cancers.


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