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Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) for Palliation of Cholangiocarcinoma

This study is currently recruiting participants. (see Contacts and Locations)
Verified February 2017 by Weill Medical College of Cornell University
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Michel Kahaleh, Weill Medical College of Cornell University Identifier:
First received: March 1, 2012
Last updated: February 16, 2017
Last verified: February 2017

Successful palliation of biliary obstruction is the main goal for reducing morbidity and mortality in patients with biliary disease and biliary obstruction related to cholangiocarcinoma. Surgical intervention for the sale is unfortunately complicated by a 30-day postoperative mortality rate of between 7 and 24%. Moreover, because of recovery time the quality of life following surgery is only improved in a minority. At present endoscopic insertion of a plastic or metal stent is the method of choice to relieve obstructive jaundice without the high morbidity and mortality associated with surgery. But this relief is unfortunately temporary since stents tend to become obstructed and the fact that effective biliary drainage in the proximal lesion is challenging.

Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) is a new therapeutic approach that specifically targets neoplastic cells. This therapy involves the intravenous administration of a photosensitizing agent followed by activation of the agent by illumination with non-thermal light of a specific wavelength, resulting in cell death from direct cytotoxicity and ischemic necrosis. A randomized controlled trial study by Ortner et all confirmed the significant advantage of PDT with regard to relief of jaundice, quality of life, and survival.

In photodynamic therapy (PDT) the uniform distribution of externally applied light is desirable but often difficult to achieve. An optical fiber tip producing cylindrical or lateral light emission can facilitate the application of laser energy by direct implantation of the tip into solid tumors. However, currently used FDA approved glass diffusers used in standard of care PDT might break in the bile ducts causing injury since they are not meant to be used within bile ducts through an endoscope or choledochoscope. Hence, there is a need to evaluate and introduce more efficient and safe non-glass cylindrical optic fiber diffuser for photo dynamic therapy in the bile ducts. Recent studies have shown that the Pioneer plastic optic diffuser is safe and effective in photodynamic therapy, it can be also used via a choledochoscope. We aim to add to the clinical evidence by conducting an open label observational study trial using this fiber optic diffuser during photo dynamic therapy in the bile ducts.

Condition Intervention Phase
Biliary Stricture
Biliary Obstruction
Bile Duct Cancer
Procedure: Photodynamic Therapy
Phase 2
Phase 3

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: No masking
Primary Purpose: Supportive Care
Official Title: Open-label Observational Study of Plastic Cylindrical Fiber Optic Diffuser (Pioneer Optics) in Photodynamic Therapy for the Management of Cholangiocarcinoma.

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Weill Medical College of Cornell University:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Efficacy Profile [ Time Frame: 2 months ]
    To assess the efficacy of a plastic cylindrical fiber optic diffuser (Pioneer Optics) in photodynamic therapy for the management of Cholangiocarcinoma by visualization of visible necrosis of target tissue in bile ducts after the application of the device.

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Safety Profile [ Time Frame: 2 months ]
    To assess the the number and intensity of adverse events occurring due to the application of the research device.

Estimated Enrollment: 55
Study Start Date: February 2012
Estimated Study Completion Date: March 22, 2018
Estimated Primary Completion Date: January 22, 2018 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: PDT Group
Subjects who receive Photodynamic therapy with plastic optic diffuser.
Procedure: Photodynamic Therapy
Photofrin and Photodynamic therapy using the plastic optic diffuser, conducted during Standard of care Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
Other Names:
  • PDT
  • Laser

Detailed Description:

Cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) is the second most common malignancy arising within the liver, and the association of this malignant condition with high morbidity and mortality is well recognized. It originates from the epithelium of bile ducts or ductules. Two types have been described: the peripheral type occurring in the parenchyma of the liver and the central type occurring within or related to the major bile ducts. Surgery can offer a curative chance, but only a minority of patients are candidates for this therapy at initial presentation since most patients are found with an unresectable tumor.

In unresectable cases, the median survival is 6 months. Since morbidity and mortality from CCA occurs because of biliary obstruction, successful palliation of that complication is the main goal in these patients. Surgical biliary bypass can be offered in order to prolong life and relieve symptoms. This intervention is unfortunately complicated by 30-day postoperative mortality rate between 7 and 24%. Moreover, the quality of life following surgery is only improved in a minority because of the time needed to recover from surgery.

Endoscopic biliary stenting during endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) offers relief from obstructive jaundice without the high morbidity and mortality associated with surgery. In addition, a study by Luman et al even showed significant improvement in emotional, cognitive and global health scores following stenting. But this relief is unfortunately temporary since stents tend to become obstructed.

Local therapies including iridium brachytherapy and photodynamic therapy (PDT) may prevent or postpone these problems.

For more information about PDT, please see the 'Citations' section.


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Patient with cholangiocarcinoma
  • Patient is age 18 years or older
  • Patient is receiving Photodynamic therapy with stent(s) placement as part of their original treatment plan
  • Patients must have adequate coagulation as defined below:

Patient's INR ≤ 2 within 30 days of treatment Patient's platelets > 50,000/cmm within 30 days of treatment

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Subject has acute porphyria. Subjects exhibiting neurologic or cutaneous symptoms will undergo urinary delta-aminolevulinic acid and porphobilinogen dosage tests to determine severity.
  • Subject is pregnant.
  • Subject is allergic to Photofrin.
  • Subject has uncorrected coagulopathy
  • Subject is unstable for ERCP
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01755013

Contact: Michel Kahaleh, MD 646-962-4797
Contact: Monica Gaidhane, MD, MPH 646-962-4796

United States, New York
Weill Cornell Medical College Recruiting
New York, New York, United States, 10021
Contact: Michel Kahaleh, MD    646-962-4797   
Contact: Monica Gaidhane, MD, MPH    646-962-4796   
Principal Investigator: Michel Kahaleh, MD         
Sponsors and Collaborators
Weill Medical College of Cornell University
Principal Investigator: Michel Kahaleh, MD Weill Medical College of Cornell University
  More Information

Additional Information:
Responsible Party: Michel Kahaleh, Chief of Advanced Endoscopy, Weill Medical College of Cornell University Identifier: NCT01755013     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 1110011999
Study First Received: March 1, 2012
Last Updated: February 16, 2017
Individual Participant Data  
Plan to Share IPD: No
Plan Description: No sharing of IPD

Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: No
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No

Keywords provided by Weill Medical College of Cornell University:
Biliary Stricture
Biliary obstruction
Bile Duct Cancer
Photodynamic Therapy
Plastic optic Diffuser

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Constriction, Pathologic
Bile Duct Neoplasms
Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial
Neoplasms by Histologic Type
Pathological Conditions, Anatomical
Biliary Tract Neoplasms
Digestive System Neoplasms
Neoplasms by Site
Bile Duct Diseases
Biliary Tract Diseases
Digestive System Diseases processed this record on May 22, 2017