Laser therapies based on photochemical or photothermal mechanisms can provide a minimally invasive and potentially more effective treatment alternative to conventional surgical resection procedures by delivering prescribed optical/thermal doses to a targeted tissue volume with minimal damage to intervening and surrounding tissues. However laser therapy effectiveness is limited due to nonspecific excitation/heating of target tissue which often results in healthy tissue injury. Nanostructures targeted to tumor cells and utilized in combination with laser excitation can enhance treatment effectiveness by increasing thermal deposition and generating toxic photo-chemical mediators in the form of reactive oxygen species for targeted cell destruction.

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