Electrochemotherapy as first line cancer treatment: Experiences from veterinary medicine in developing novel protocols

E. P. Spugnini, T. Azzarito, S. Fais, M. Fanciulli, A. Baldi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tumor microenvironment is one of the major obstacles to the efficacy of chemotherapy in cancer patients. The abnormal blood flow within the tumor results in uneven drug distribution. Electrochemotherapy (ECT) is a tumor treatment that adopts the systemic or local delivery of anticancer drugs with the application of permeabilizing electric pulses having appropriate amplitude and waveforms. This allows the use of lipophobic drugs that frequently have a narrow therapeutic index maintaining at the same time a reduced patient morbidity and preserving appropriate anticancer efficacy. Its use in humans is addressed to the treatment of cutaneous neoplasms or the palliation of skin tumor metastases, and a standard operating procedure has been devised. On the other hand, in veterinary oncology this approach is gaining popularity, thus becoming a first line treatment for different cancer histotypes, in a variety of clinical conditions due to its high efficacy and low toxicity. This review summarizes the state of the art in veterinary oncology as a preclinical model and reports the new protocols in terms of drugs and therapy combination that have been developed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-52
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Cancer Drug Targets
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Adjuvant
  • Bleomycin
  • Cisplatin
  • Electroporation
  • Neoadjuvant
  • Pets
  • Therapeutic index

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology
  • Cancer Research


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