Among brain tumors, glioblastoma multiforme appears as one of the most aggressive forms of cancer with poor prognosis and no curative treatment available. Recently, a new kind of radio-chemotherapy has been developed using synchrotron irradiation for the photoactivation of molecules with high-Z elements such as cisplatin (PAT-Plat). This protocol showed a cure of 33% of rats bearing the F98 glioma but the efficiency of the treatment was only measured in terms of overall survival. Here, characterization of the effects of the PAT-Plat on tumor volume and tumor blood perfusion are proposed. Changes in these parameters may predict the overall survival. Firstly, changes in tumor growth of the F98 glioma implanted in the hindlimb of nude mice after the PAT-Plat treatment and its different modalities have been characterized. Secondly, the effects of the treatment on tumor blood perfusion have been observed by intravital two-photon microscopy. Cisplatin alone had no detectable effect on the tumor volume. A reduction of tumor growth was measured after a 15 Gy synchrotron irradiation, but the whole therapy (15 Gy irradiation + cisplatin) showed the largest decrease in tumor growth, indicating a synergistic effect of both synchrotron irradiation and cisplatin treatment. A high number of unperfused vessels (52%) were observed in the peritumoral area in comparison with untreated controls. In the PAT-Plat protocol the transient tumor growth reduction may be due to synergistic interactions of tumor-cell-killing effects and reduction of the tumor blood perfusion.
Keywords: cisplatin; glioma; synchrotron photoactivation therapy; synergistic effects; two-photon microscopy.