Cancer occurs as a consequence of the dysregulation of genes during cell division, resulting in an increased proliferation rate and loss of vital checkpoints in cells. Photodynamic therapy (PDT) makes use of photosensitizers, oxygen, and light at visible wavelengths to stimulate formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and trigger apoptosis of cancer cells. Homeopathic remedies commonly affect genes, including tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and Bcl2, thereby stimulating cancer-cell death.
The study intended to examine and summarize the latest findings in preclinical, in vitro, and in vivo studies on the mechanisms of homeopathy and PDT in cancer therapy.
The research team conducted a literature review using extensive databases made available by the University of Johannesburg Library. The databases used, included, Science Direct, Ebsco Host and Pubmed.
This study took place at the Laser Research Centre, University of Johannesburg.
Studies demonstrated an ability for both homeopathic remedies and photodynamic therapy to induce apoptosis in cancer cells by interfering with mitochondrial pathways leading to a release of cytochrome-c, the production of reactive oxygen species and by interfering with cancer cell genes by upregulating p53 and Bax and down-regulating TNF-α.
Both homeopathy and PDT demonstrate antineoplastic effects; however; more research needs to be conducted before any conclusions can be made.