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Inhalable Aerosol Light Source for Controlling Drug-Resistant Bacterial Lung Infections

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - LIGHT4LUNGS (Inhalable Aerosol Light Source for Controlling Drug-Resistant Bacterial Lung Infections)

Período documentado: 2020-12-01 hasta 2022-11-30

The FET Open project "Inhalable Aerosol Light Source for Controlling Drug-Resistant Bacterial Lung Infections" (with acronym Light4Lungs and Grant agreement ID: 863102) proposes a novel approach to address the problem of antimicrobial resistance in the treatment of chronic lung infections, which are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with diseases such as cystic fibrosis and hospital-acquired lung infections.
The goal is to develop a novel therapeutic scheme for the treatment of the infections, replacing antibiotics by inhalable light sources that will excite bacterial endogenous photosensitizers (e.g. iron-free porphyrins), eliminating the pathogenic bacteria by the photodynamic effect (local production of cytotoxic reactive oxygen species by the combined action of light, a photosensitiser and oxygen) irrespective of its multidrug resistance profile. The aim is to have a safe treatment for the host tissue thanks to its lack of self-photosensitising ability.
Three main objectives are being pursued: (i) The design of the treatment components, based on biological models, aerosol-based light emitting particles, and the action spectrum of the photodynamic effect; (ii) the realisation of the treatment components, from the particles to the aerosol and to the mechanism of particle activation prior to inhalation; and (iii) the assessment of the treatment efficacy and safety using in vitro and in vivo models.
During the second reporting period of the project, the Consortium has focused on overcoming the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and the delays in entailed, and has successfully attained all objectives set.

The main results achieved so far are (i) the definition of the in vitro and in vivo biological models for lung infections, as well as the methods to assess the efficacy and safety of the Light4Lungs treatment using them; (ii) the definition of the physico-chemical, optical, and photophysical properties of the light emitting particles; (iii) the determination of the semitheoretical action spectrum of the phototherapy; (iv) the obtention of light-emitting particles with persistent luminescence; and (v) the assessment of the luminous aerosol stability.
Light4lungs addresses the problem of antimicrobial resistance in the treatment of chronic lung infections in a highly innovative way, whereby antibiotics will be replaced by breathable light sources that will eliminate the pathogenic bacteria through a photodynamic effect. Adoption of the Ligh4Lungs treatment scheme will therefore contribute to stop the spread of antibiotic resistance. The key novelty of the Light4Lungs concept is the use of breathable therapeutic light sources. The results of the project will be useful for patients with chronic multidrug resistant pulmonary bacterial infections, such as cystic fibrosis, and have a strong potential for extension to other pulmonary diseases, such as fungal infections and lung cancer, and eventually to other internal organs, having a profound impact on the fields of materials, photonics and healthcare.