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A method to obtain the thermal parameters and the photothermal transduction efficiency in an optical hyperthermia device based on laser irradiation of gold nanoparticles

Cristina Sánchez López de Pablo12*, José Javier Serrano Olmedo12, Alejandra Mina Rosales12, Norma Ramírez Hernández12 and Francisco del Pozo Guerrero12

Author Affiliations

1 Centre for Biomedical Technology (CTB), Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM), Campus de Montegancedo, Pozuelo de Alarcón, 28223 Madrid, Spain

2 Biomedical Research Networking Center (CIBER), C/ Monforte de Lemos 3-5, Pabellón 11, 28029 Madrid, Spain

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2014, 9:441  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-9-441

Published: 27 August 2014


Optical hyperthermia systems based on the laser irradiation of gold nanorods seem to be a promising tool in the development of therapies against cancer. After a proof of concept in which the authors demonstrated the efficiency of this kind of systems, a modeling process based on an equivalent thermal-electric circuit has been carried out to determine the thermal parameters of the system and an energy balance obtained from the time-dependent heating and cooling temperature curves of the irradiated samples in order to obtain the photothermal transduction efficiency. By knowing this parameter, it is possible to increase the effectiveness of the treatments, thanks to the possibility of predicting the response of the device depending on the working configuration. As an example, the thermal behavior of two different kinds of nanoparticles is compared. The results show that, under identical conditions, the use of PEGylated gold nanorods allows for a more efficient heating compared with bare nanorods, and therefore, it results in a more effective therapy.

Gold nanoparticles; Laser irradiation; Optical hyperthermia; Photothermal transduction efficiency; Temperature curves; Thermal parameters