Laser therapy, recently renamed as photobiomodulation, stands as a promising supportive treatment for oral mucositis induced by oncological therapies. However, its mechanisms of action and, more importantly, its safety in cancer patients, are still unclear. Here we explored the anti-cancer effect of 3 laser protocols, set at the most commonly used wavelengths, in B16F10 melanoma and oral carcinogenesis mouse models. While laser light increased cell metabolism in cultured cells, the in vivo outcome was reduced tumor progression. This striking, unexpected result, was paralleled by the recruitment of immune cells, in particular T lymphocytes and dendritic cells, which secreted type I interferons. Laser light also reduced the number of highly angiogenic macrophages within the tumor mass and promoted vessel normalization, an emerging strategy to control tumor progression. Collectively, these results set photobiomodulation as a safety procedure in oncological patients and open the way to its innovative use for cancer therapy.
Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.