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Optimal Design of Laser Surgery for Cancer Treatment Through Nanoshell-Mediated Hyperthermia Therapy

Y. Feng, N. Rylander, J. Bass, J.T. Oden and K. Diller
The University of Texas at Austin, US

cancer treatment, laser surgery, nanoshell, finite element modeling, inverse problem

Recent development of nanoparticle technology and its application in hyperthermia therapies makes it possible to consider optimal control of the temperature field and thermal energy delivered to the tumor region with minimal destruction of surrounding tissue, so that vital organ functions can be preserved. In this presentation, we consider a special class of nanoparticles called nanoshells, which consist of a concentric spherical dielectric core and a thin metal coating shell with a total diameter in the 20 nm to 100 nm range, to be used as mediated agents to control the temperature field. Furthermore, we construct an objective functional based on experimentally measured HSP (Heat Shock Protein) expression and cell viability to optimize the temperature field in terms of boundary conditions, thermal energy absorption rate, and nanoshell distribution. The use of nanoshells makes optimal control attainable through global distribution and chemical composition that determines the absorbing and scattering properties of the nanoshell. In this study, we investigate the feasibility of optimal design of laser surgical protocols using nanoshell-mediated temperature control, including design of nanoshells via the control of their size and chemical composition. The computational results are compared with experiments performed on tumor grown on lab rats.

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