Cold atmospheric plasma, a novel promising anti-cancer treatment modality

Dayun Yan _, Jonathan H. Sherman, Michael Keidar

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:15977-15995. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13304

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Dayun Yan1, Jonathan H. Sherman2 and Michael Keidar1

1 Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, The George Washington University, NW, Washington, DC, USA

2 Neurological Surgery, The George Washington University, NW, Washington, DC, USA

Correspondence to:

Dayun Yan, email:

Michael Keidar, email:

Keywords: cold plasma, cancer treatment, reactive species, selectivity

Received: September 14, 2016 Accepted: October 29, 2016 Published: November 11, 2016


Over the past decade, cold atmospheric plasma (CAP), a near room temperature ionized gas has shown its promising application in cancer therapy. Two CAP devices, namely dielectric barrier discharge and plasma jet, show significantly anti-cancer capacity over dozens of cancer cell lines in vitro and several subcutaneous xenograft tumors in vivo. In contrast to conventional anti-cancer approaches and drugs, CAP is a selective anti-cancer treatment modality. Thus far establishing the chemical and molecular mechanism of the anti-cancer capacity of CAP is far from complete. In this review, we provide a comprehensive introduction of the basics of CAP, state of the art research in this field, the primary challenges, and future directions to cancer biologists.

Author Information

Dayun Yan
Primary Contact  _

Jonathan H. Sherman

Michael Keidar

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