My research is in developing novel technologies and methods that can be translated to cancer patients and that are based on light and nanoparticles. The applications include cancer detection/diagnosis (using different forms of optical spectroscopy and imaging), cancer treatment (using light-activated drugs), and image-guided cancer interventions (surgery guided by fluorescence imaging). Nanoparticles are used in some of these approaches in order to deliver light-activatable materials to the tumor. Examples of current projects are: clinical trials and technology development of quantitative fluorescence imaging to guide brain tumour surgery and achieve complete removal of malignant tissue; photodynamic therapy to treat melanoma; multifunctional nanoparticles discovered at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre to guide tumour surgery and for photodynamic and photothermal therapy of solid tumours, including prostate, lung and head & neck cancers; the use of photosensitizing nanoparticles that can be activated by high-energy X-rays so as to treat deep-seated tumours such as in the pancreas and metastatic cancers such as in the lung or brain. The majority of this work is collaborative, both within Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and with colleagues internationally, and involving both other scientists as well as a range of specialist oncologists. There is also considerable effort in translating the technologies through commercialization.
Brian C Wilson, PhD
Senior Scientist, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre