Lack of oxygen (hypoxia) is the hallmark of the tumor microenvironment and a key factor in inducing treatment resistance.
Tumor hypoxiacauses failures in cancer treatments through the induction of intracellular pathways in cancer cells that lead to increased angiogenesis, aggressiveness, metastasis, and deactivation of protective immune cells. Tumor recurrence due to failures in current cancer therapies, ranges from 30% (e.g. breast and prostate, pancreatic tumors) to nearly 100% (e.g. glioblastoma) .
The Blood-Brain-Barrier (BBB) significantly restricts the entry of compounds to the brain and reduces the effectiveness of many drugs and biologics to treat brain tumors and metastases. Limited early-stage cancer detection Due to the lack of sensitivity and serious side effects associated with current contrast agents, many cancer patients are not imaged, and clinicians must make management decisions with limited diagnostic information.