Light-Based Technologies and Spectroscopic Techniques for Photo-Sensing and Photoinactivation of Microorganisms, Virus, and Cancer Cells

A special issue of Photonics (ISSN 2304-6732). This special issue belongs to the section "Biophotonics and Biomedical Optics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 December 2022) | Viewed by 21136

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Optics and Photonics Group, Physics Institute, Federal University of Mato Grosso do Sul, Campo Grande 79070-900, Brazil
Interests: optical spectroscopy; biological systems; biomaterial; phototherapy
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Istituto per la Scienza e Tecnologia dei Plasmi (ISTP), Sede di Bari, 70126 Bari, Italy
Interests: laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy applied to minerals, gems, rocks, meteorites, soils, fertilizers, plants and cultural heritage; laser-matter interaction; laser spectroscopy; morphological characterization techniques (AFM, SEM, TEM) and nanocrystalline diamond films
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Centre for Mechanical Technology and Automation, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
Interests: graphene-based porous structures for heterogeneous catalysis (catalysis) and water purification (environment); three-dimensional graphene scaffolds for biomedical applications (biomaterials); nanostructured graphene substrates for selective biomolecules detection (sensors); carbon-based nanoplatforms for detection and therapy of cancer cells (therapeutic agent)
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The increasing emergence of microbial drug resistance, dissemination of the COVID-19 virus and the increase of incidence of cancer worldwide raises great concern and indicates an urgent need to develop new and alternative methods for the early detection and inactivation of these potential threats to avoid a devastating impact in human, animal and plant health. In this scenario, phototherapies and photo-based diagnostics emerge as promising alternatives to conventional drugs and sensing techniques to deal with all the living beings facing these health-related challenges.

This Special Issue of Photonics, entitled “Light-based technologies and spectroscopic techniques for photo-sensing and photoinactivation of microorganisms, virus and cancer cells”, will focus on the fundamentals and applications of photo-sensing and the photoinactivation of pathogenic microorganisms (bacteria, virus, fungi, etc.) and cancer cells to provide a comprehensive representation of the current research findings and technical developments in the field. Contributions focused on new materials and innovative protocols for applications in cells, animals, plants, foods, human subjects, water, environment quality control and clinical diagnosis are encouraged. This Special Issue covers, but is not limited to, the following topics: laser therapy; photodynamic therapy; photothermal therapy; photoacoustic therapy; multispectral imaging and sensing; fluorescence spectroscopy; LIF, LIBS; FTIR spectroscopy; NIR spectroscopy; Raman spectroscopy; SERS; metal enhanced fluorescence; nanoplasmonic sensor.

Review articles and regular research articles related to biophotonics and biomedical optics are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Anderson R. L. Caires
Dr. Giorgio S. Senesi
Dr. Gil Goncalves
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • laser therapy
  • photodynamic therapy
  • photothermal therapy
  • photoacoustic therapy
  • multispectral imaging and sensing
  • fluorescence spectroscopy
  • LIF, LIBS
  • FTIR spectroscopy
  • NIR spectroscopy
  • Raman spectroscopy
  • SERS
  • metal enhanced fluorescence
  • nanoplasmonic sensor

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 1726 KiB  
Article
Towards Microbial Food Safety of Sprouts: Photodynamic Decontamination of Seeds
by Andreas Fellner, Christoph Hamminger, Michael Fefer, Jun Liu and Kristjan Plaetzer
Photonics 2023, 10(3), 239; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics10030239 - 22 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1972
Abstract
The climate crisis is one of the biggest challenges for humanity in the 21st century. Production and consumption of meat contributes to global warming by causing emissions of climate-relevant gases. Freshly grown sprouts are part of an alternative, as they are less polluting [...] Read more.
The climate crisis is one of the biggest challenges for humanity in the 21st century. Production and consumption of meat contributes to global warming by causing emissions of climate-relevant gases. Freshly grown sprouts are part of an alternative, as they are less polluting but still a nutritious food. However, warm humid sprouting conditions may cause pathogenic microorganisms to thrive. Decontamination methods for raw sprouts are therefore relevant. Photodynamic Inactivation (PDI) is a novel approach that uses photoactivatable molecules (photosensitisers, PS) and visible or near-infrared light to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS). These ROS kill microorganisms by oxidative processes. Here, we test the application of PDI based on sodium-magnesium-chlorophyllin (Chl, approved as food additive E140) for photo-decontamination of mung bean, radish, and buckwheat seeds. Seeds were contaminated with Listeria innocua, serving as a model system for Listeria monocytogenes, subjected to PDI using an LED array with 395 nm and tested for remaining bacterial contamination by CFU counting. PDI based on 100 µM Chl reduces the bacterial load of mung bean and radish seeds by 99.9% (radiant exposure 56.4 J/cm2 and 28.2 J/cm2, respectively), and of buckwheat seeds by <90% reduction after illumination with 28.2 J/cm2. Neither weight nor the germination rates of seeds are affected by PDI. Interestingly, the effect of PDI on seeds is partially maintained on stored sprouts after germination: The bacterial load on mung bean sprouts is reduced by more than 99.9% after phototreatment of seeds with 100 µM Chl and illumination at 56.4 J/cm2. In conclusion, we suggest PDI based on Chl as an effective and biocompatible method for the decontamination of seeds and sprouts for human consumption from Listeria. Full article
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10 pages, 1542 KiB  
Communication
Dependence of the Registered Blood Flow in Incoherent Optical Fluctuation Flowmetry on the Mean Photon Path Length in a Tissue
by Denis G. Lapitan, Andrey P. Tarasov and Dmitry A. Rogatkin
Photonics 2023, 10(2), 190; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics10020190 - 10 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1468
Abstract
Laser-based medical techniques for evaluating blood flow (BF), such as laser Doppler flowmetry, laser speckle contrast imaging, etc., are known, but expensive and have some disadvantages. Recently, we have proposed a new technique—incoherent optical fluctuation flowmetry (IOFF), which is realized using [...] Read more.
Laser-based medical techniques for evaluating blood flow (BF), such as laser Doppler flowmetry, laser speckle contrast imaging, etc., are known, but expensive and have some disadvantages. Recently, we have proposed a new technique—incoherent optical fluctuation flowmetry (IOFF), which is realized using a LED-based optical probe. This work aims to theoretically study the dependence of BF registered by IOFF on the source-detector distance (SDD) in the probe. For this purpose, we developed a three-layer optical model of skin and used Monte Carlo (MC) simulations of light propagation. All computations were performed for a wavelength of 810 nm and several SDDs from 1 to 14 mm. MC results showed that the BF depends nonlinearly on the SDD. Herewith, the BF is strongly correlated with the mean photon path length in a tissue (R = 0.92). Thus, flowmeters with different SDDs can give different BF values on the same patient. Based on the study results, to standardize BF measurements, it has been justified that BF magnitudes measured should be normalized to the exponential function of the SDD in the used optical probe in the form of [1 − exp(−b·SDD)], where b is a constant. Full article
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13 pages, 4912 KiB  
Article
Comparison of Two Light Wavelengths (λ = 660 nm and λ = 780 nm) in the Repair Process of Oral Mucositis Induced by Ionizing Radiation: Clinical and Microscopic Evaluations in Rats
by Maíra Franco Andrade, Ariane Venzon Naia Sardo, Carolina Benetti, Leticia Bonfante Sicchieri, Luciana Corrêa and Denise Maria Zezell
Photonics 2023, 10(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics10010016 - 24 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1794
Abstract
Photobiomodulation (PBM) has been clinically used for the prevention and treatment of oral mucositis (OM). The effect of red and near-infrared wavelengths on OM repair is still misunderstood. The aim of this study was to compare the clinical effect and tissue changes caused [...] Read more.
Photobiomodulation (PBM) has been clinically used for the prevention and treatment of oral mucositis (OM). The effect of red and near-infrared wavelengths on OM repair is still misunderstood. The aim of this study was to compare the clinical effect and tissue changes caused by 660 nm and 780 nm exposure in an experimental model of OM. Rats were submitted to gamma irradiation for induction of OM lesions and treated with 660 nm or 780 nm lasers with the same dosimetry parameters (30 mW, 7.5 J/cm2, 10 s, spot size = 0.04 mm, irradiation every two days). Clinical assessment of OM severity and histopathological analyses was performed after 8, 14, and 20 days of the ionizing radiation. OM severity was reduced in the PBM groups, especially when the red laser was used. The histopathological pattern was similar between the PBM groups, showing advanced re-epithelization and more pronounced angiogenesis and collagen deposition compared to the control. The 660 nm group showed a greater collagen matrix area than the 780 nm group at 14 days. In conclusion, PBM at 660 nm and 780 nm improved the repair of ionizing radiation-induced OM. Both wavelengths activated the angiogenesis and collagen deposition, but these tissue effects were more pronounced when 660 nm was used. Full article
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12 pages, 1884 KiB  
Article
In Vivo and In Silico Study of Photodynamic Necrosis Volume in Rat Liver
by Marlon Rodrigues Garcia, Víctor Sánchez, Thereza Cury Fortunato, Michelle Barreto Requena, Clóvis Grecco, José Dirceu Vollet-Filho, Layla Pires, Lilian Tan Moriyama and Sebastião Pratavieira
Photonics 2022, 9(12), 993; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics9120993 - 16 Dec 2022
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Abstract
Photodynamic therapy is a treatment modality that can be used to treat various types of lesions. To produce cell death, reaching a certain threshold dose of reactive oxygen species (ROS) is required. The estimation of ROS production is of paramount importance to predict [...] Read more.
Photodynamic therapy is a treatment modality that can be used to treat various types of lesions. To produce cell death, reaching a certain threshold dose of reactive oxygen species (ROS) is required. The estimation of ROS production is of paramount importance to predict the depth of necrosis and to ensure that the volume to be treated receives doses higher than the threshold. In this study, we compared a theoretical model for PDT based on Monte Carlo simulations of light irradiance and rate equations with a rat liver model. At the end of the simulation, necrosis depths and volumes were estimated, as well as the photosensitizer (PS), oxygen, and ROS concentrations at each position of the treated area. From the in vivo study, we obtained the ROS concentration threshold of about 1 mM for Photogem in rat liver. This proposed method can be used for any PS or tissue, including tissues with multiple layers. The proposed method can be used to estimate parameters for any PS or tissue, including layered tissues, as long as their parameters are known. In addition, other protocols can be tested, or compared with the standard ones, providing the bases for analyzing a diverse range of photodynamic treatment scenarios. Full article
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14 pages, 4009 KiB  
Article
Chlorophyll Fluorescence Imaging (CFI) and Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) Applied to Investigate Tomato Plants Infected by the Root Knot Nematode (RKN) Meloidogyne incognita and Tobacco Plants Infected by Cymbidium Ringspot Virus
by Giorgio Saverio Senesi, Olga De Pascale, Bruno Spolon Marangoni, Anderson Rodrigues Lima Caires, Gustavo Nicolodelli, Vitantonio Pantaleo and Paola Leonetti
Photonics 2022, 9(9), 627; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics9090627 - 1 Sep 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2735
Abstract
Recently, studies on climate change have highlighted the central role of photosynthetic mechanisms in the defense response of plants to abiotic and biotic stresses. Photo-sensing and photo-activation are innovative technologies applied for the early detection of plant pathogens in order to prevent the [...] Read more.
Recently, studies on climate change have highlighted the central role of photosynthetic mechanisms in the defense response of plants to abiotic and biotic stresses. Photo-sensing and photo-activation are innovative technologies applied for the early detection of plant pathogens in order to prevent the dramatic impact they may have on plants. Chlorophyll Fluorescence Imaging (CFI) and Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) analytical techniques can be used to evaluate the amount of chlorophyll in plants, which can be altered in the case of biotic and abiotic stresses. In this work, both techniques were applied to two pathogenic model systems, i.e., roots of susceptible tomato plants infected by Meloidogyne incognita and Nicotiana benthamiana plants infected by cymbidium ringspot virus. Experimental evidence is provided and discussed showing that specific application protocols of both methods can be used successfully for the early detection of symptoms of the pathogen attacks of Meloidogyne incognita on tomato roots and of cymbidium ringspot virus infected plants. In particular, a decrease in chlorophyll content was measured by fluorescence imaging, and an increase in Mg++ content was determined by LIBS in both the leaves and stems of infected tomato plants and the leaves of infected plants, with respect to control (non-infected) plants. Thus, the two techniques used have been shown to be able to discriminate satisfactorily between control and infected plants and to provide some insight on the underlying mechanisms of plant defenses again nematodes and viruses. Full article
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12 pages, 3280 KiB  
Article
The Effect of 5-Aminolevulinic Acid Photodynamic Therapy in Promoting Pyroptosis of HPV-Infected Cells
by Junxiao Wei, Xiaoming Peng, Sijia Wang, Meinian Xu, Hui Liu, Yixiu Zhong, Xi Chen, Qi Wang, Xiaowen Huang and Kang Zeng
Photonics 2022, 9(6), 408; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics9060408 - 10 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1972
Abstract
5-aminolevulinic acid photodynamic therapy (ALA-PDT) is highly effective in the treatment of condyloma acuminata (CA). Previous research has indicated that ALA-PDT could induce cell death by different mechanisms, including apoptosis and autophagy, but the role of pyroptosis in ALA-PDT remains uncertain. Thus, this [...] Read more.
5-aminolevulinic acid photodynamic therapy (ALA-PDT) is highly effective in the treatment of condyloma acuminata (CA). Previous research has indicated that ALA-PDT could induce cell death by different mechanisms, including apoptosis and autophagy, but the role of pyroptosis in ALA-PDT remains uncertain. Thus, this study aimed to explore whether pyroptosis is a potential mechanism of ALA-PDT killing human papillomavirus (HPV) infected cells. HPV-positive HeLa cells were exposed to ALA-PDT, then cell viability assay, lactate dehydrogenase release (LDH) assay, detection of reactive oxygen species (ROS), quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR), and western blot were used to evaluate pyroptosis induced by ALA-PDT. Results suggested that ALA-PDT enhanced the expression of NLRP3, caspase-1, GSDMD, and the production of inflammatory cytokines such as IL-1β and IL-18. In addition, ALA-PDT induced the production of ROS and led to the destruction of the cell membrane. The inhibition of pyroptosis reduced the killing of HeLa cells by ALA-PDT. This study demonstrates that ALA-PDT induces pyroptosis in HPV-positive cells, which provides some explanation for the mechanism of ALA-PDT to treat CA and HPV infection-related diseases. Full article
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9 pages, 1763 KiB  
Communication
High Intensity Violet Light (405 nm) Inactivates Coronaviruses in Phosphate Buffered Saline (PBS) and on Surfaces
by Bernhard Lau, Dietmar Becher and Martin Hessling
Photonics 2021, 8(10), 414; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics8100414 - 28 Sep 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2901
Abstract
It has been proven that visible light with a wavelength of about 405 nm exhibits an antimicrobial effect on bacteria and fungi if the irradiation doses are high enough. Hence, the question arises as to whether this violet light would also be suitable [...] Read more.
It has been proven that visible light with a wavelength of about 405 nm exhibits an antimicrobial effect on bacteria and fungi if the irradiation doses are high enough. Hence, the question arises as to whether this violet light would also be suitable to inactivate SARS-CoV-2 coronaviruses. Therefore, a high-intensity light source was developed and applied to irradiate bovine coronaviruses (BCoV), which are employed as SARS-CoV-2 surrogates for safety reasons. Irradiation is performed in virus solutions diluted with phosphate buffered saline and on steel surfaces. Significant virus reduction by several log levels was observed both in the liquid and on the surface within half an hour with average log reduction doses of 57.5 and 96 J/cm2, respectively. Therefore, it can be concluded that 405 nm irradiation has an antiviral effect on coronaviruses, but special attention should be paid to the presence of photosensitizers in the virus environment in future experiments. Technically, visible violet radiation is therefore suitable for coronavirus reduction, but the required radiation doses are difficult to achieve rapidly. Full article
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Review

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36 pages, 1009 KiB  
Review
Randomized and Controlled Clinical Studies on Antibacterial Photodynamic Therapy: An Overview
by Fernanda Alves, Mirian D. Stringasci, Michelle B. Requena, Kate C. Blanco, Lucas D. Dias, Thaila Q. Corrêa and Vanderlei S. Bagnato
Photonics 2022, 9(5), 340; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics9050340 - 13 May 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2430
Abstract
The emergence of drug-resistant bacteria is considered a critical public health problem. The need to establish alternative approaches to countering resistant microorganisms is unquestionable in overcoming this problem. Among emerging alternatives, antimicrobial photodynamic therapy (aPDT) has become promising to control infectious diseases. aPDT [...] Read more.
The emergence of drug-resistant bacteria is considered a critical public health problem. The need to establish alternative approaches to countering resistant microorganisms is unquestionable in overcoming this problem. Among emerging alternatives, antimicrobial photodynamic therapy (aPDT) has become promising to control infectious diseases. aPDT is based on the activation of a photosensitizer (PS) by a particular wavelength of light followed by generation of the reactive oxygen. These interactions result in the production of reactive oxygen species, which are lethal to bacteria. Several types of research have shown that aPDT has been successfully studied in in vitro, in vivo, and randomized clinical trials (RCT). Considering the lack of reviews of RCTs studies with aPDT applied in bacteria in the literature, we performed a systematic review of aPDT randomized clinical trials for the treatment of bacteria-related diseases. According to the literature published from 2008 to 2022, the RCT study of aPDT was mostly performed for periodontal disease, followed by halitosis, dental infection, peri-implantitis, oral decontamination, and skin ulcers. A variety of PSs, light sources, and protocols were efficiently used, and the treatment did not cause any side effects for the individuals. Full article
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11 pages, 1050 KiB  
Review
Review of Virus Inactivation by Visible Light
by Martin Hessling, Bernhard Lau and Petra Vatter
Photonics 2022, 9(2), 113; https://doi.org/10.3390/photonics9020113 - 17 Feb 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3521
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic is driving the search for new antiviral techniques. Bacteria and fungi are known to be inactivated not only by ultraviolet radiation but also by visible light. Several studies have recently appeared on this subject, in which viruses were mainly irradiated [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic is driving the search for new antiviral techniques. Bacteria and fungi are known to be inactivated not only by ultraviolet radiation but also by visible light. Several studies have recently appeared on this subject, in which viruses were mainly irradiated in media. However, it is an open question to what extent the applied media, and especially their riboflavin concentration, can influence the results. A literature search identified appropriate virus photoinactivation publications and, where possible, viral light susceptibility was quantitatively determined in terms of average log-reduction doses. Sensitivities of enveloped viruses were plotted against assumed riboflavin concentrations. Viruses appear to be sensitive to visible (violet/blue) light. The median log-reduction doses of all virus experiments performed in liquids is 58 J/cm2. For the non-enveloped, enveloped and coronaviruses only, they were 222, 29 and 19 J/cm2, respectively. Data are scarce, but it appears that (among other things) the riboflavin concentration in the medium has an influence on the log-reduction doses. Experiments with DMEM, with its 0.4 mg/L riboflavin, have so far produced results with the greatest viral susceptibilities. It should be critically evaluated whether the currently published virus sensitivities are really only intrinsic properties of the virus, or whether the medium played a significant role. In future experiments, irradiation should be carried out in solutions with the lowest possible riboflavin concentration. Full article
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