Published January 13, 2015
Two years ago, Don Moulden was told he had incurable lung cancer. At the time, he thought he would have to start planning his funeral.
Today, he is in complete remission.
Moulden’s cancer was killed off with a special light treatment called photodynamic therapy (PDT), and it is just one of the ways light is being used to save lives. Scientists have come up with bright new ways to combat cancer, tuberculosis and MRSA.
“It was miraculous,” said Moulden, 76, from Buntingford, Herfordshire in England. “I thought I’d be planning my own funeral that year, instead I was organizing a whitewater rafting trip to the U.S.”
Moulden was treated with photofrin, a drug being trialed by Dr. Jeremy George at the National Medical Laser Center at University College Hospital in London. It is absorbed by every cell in the body, but is only activated if targeted with light.
With PDT, the patient is given a light-sensitive drug, which is activated by a light. The drug kills cancer cells by depriving them of oxygen. There is no structural damage to the area exposed to the light.