Researchers have developed a new non-invasive technique that kills cancerous cells within two hours. The method involves injecting the chemical compound nitrobenzaldehyde into the cancerous tumor allowing it to diffuse into the tissue, a significant advance that will help people with inoperable or hard-to-reach tumors and even children who have been diagnosed with this deadly disease.

Once nitrobenzaldehyde is injected, a beam of light is then aimed that the tissue that causes the cells to become acidic and kill themselves, forcing them to “commit suicide”. Within two straight hours, 95 percent of the targeted cancerous cells are dead or are reckoned to be dead.

Matthew Gdovin from University of Texas US stated that even though there are multiple kinds of cancer, they all share one thing and that’s their susceptibility to this induced cell suicide. Mr. Gdovin tested this technique against triple negative breast cancer, one of the most aggressive of cancer types which also one of the hardest to treat. Also the prognosis of a triple negative breast cancer is generally very poor. Gdovin added that all cancer forms attempt to make cells acidic on the outside as a way to attract the attention of a blood vessel, which seeks to get rid of the acid. But instead, the cancerous cell latches on to the blood vessel, and using it makes the tumor larger and larger.


Chemotherapy targets all cells in the body, and many chemo-therapeutics try to keep cancer cells acidic to kill the cancer. This action causes cancer patients to look sick and lose hair. Gdovin’s method. however, is more accurate and targets just the tumor and nothing else.

The researcher has now begun testing his method on drug-resistant cancer cells to make his therapy as strong as it can be. He has even begun developing a nanoparticle that can be injected into the human body to target metastasised cancer cells. This nanoparticle is activated with a wavelength of light that can pass harmlessly through the skin, flesh and bone and can still activate the cancer-killing nanoparticle.

He is hopeful that his non-invasive method shall be a welcome help for cancer patients with tumors in areas that are very difficult to operate for surgeons – like brain stem, spine and aorta. It can be helpful to even those people who’ve been exposed to radiation far too long and who can no longer cope with the pain and scarring they bring as side effects. Children who are at rist of developing mutation from radiation in future may also benefit from this method.

The study was published on the Journal of Clinical Oncology.