RPCI Researcher, Pioneer in Photodynamic Therapy, Honored at International Conference

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Buffalo, NY — Ravindra K. Pandey, PhD, Professor and Distinguished Member of the Department of Cellular Stress Biology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI), was one of five scientists honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Sixth International Conference on Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines.

Dr. Pandey received the Thomas Dougherty Excellence in PDT Award for his use of porphyrin-based compounds in tumor imaging and photodynamic therapy (PDT). Porphyrins are photosensitive organic compounds that play a key role in PDT, helping oncologists to identify and destroy cancerous tissue.

Dr. Pandey organized and co-chaired a Symposium on Tumor Imaging and Photodynamic Therapy at the conference, held July 4-9, 2010, in Santa Ana Pueblo, NM. He is only the second recipient of this biannual award, which is presented by the International Society of Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines and takes its name from Dr. Thomas J. Dougherty, an international pioneer in photodynamic therapy who launched the first PDT lab at RPCI in the 1980s.

Several photosensitizers developed in Dr. Pandey’s laboratory are currently being studied in advanced preclinical trials worldwide, and one of them, the chlorophyll derivative HPPH, is being studied in phase I and phase II clinical trials at RPCI and the University of Pennsylvania. Some of these agents have recently been licensed to pharmaceutical companies in India and China for further development and commercialization.

Dr. Pandey is noted for his work in developing a “see and treat” approach that uses a single agent for positron emission tomography (PET), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or fluorescence imaging and therapy. He has published more than 250 research papers, as well as numerous book chapters and review articles, and holds more than 30 patents in the areas of tumor imaging and phototherapy. He has received several Western New York Inventor of the Year Awards, and has also been honored by the International Society of Heterocyclic Chemistry.

The mission of Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) is to understand, prevent and cure cancer. RPCI, founded in 1898, was one of the first cancer centers in the country to be named a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and remains the only facility with this designation in Upstate New York. The Institute is a member of the prestigious National Comprehensive Cancer Network, an alliance of the nation’s leading cancer centers; maintains affiliate sites; and is a partner in national and international collaborative programs. For more information, visit RPCI’s website at http://www.roswellpark.org, call 1-877-ASK-RPCI (1-877-275-7724) or email askrpci@roswellpark.org.

Media Contact: 

Annie Deck-Miller, Senior Media Relations Manager
716-845-8593; annie.deck-miller@roswellpark.org