In the past decade, plasma medicine researchers from various countries reported successful tests showing that cold plasmas and media activated by cold plasma can destroy cancerous cells in vitro and in vivo. Various cancer cell lines, including those associated with glioblastoma, melanoma, papilloma, carcinoma, colorectal cancer, ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, leukemia, and lung cancer were tested.
The early successes led to the establishment of a workshop entirely dedicated to the application of cold plasma to cancer therapy. This is the International Workshop on Plasma for Cancer Treatment (IWPCT). IWPCT is managed by an International Scientific Committee (ISC), which has 14 members representing the various disciplines of plasma medicine, including plasma physics, biology, chemistry, biochemistry, and medicine.
The first edition of IWPCT was co-organised in March 2014 by M. Laroussi (Old Dominion University, Norfolk, U.S.A.) and M. Keidar (George Washington University, Washington DC, U.S.A.), who were also the co-chairs of the ISC from 2014 to 2017. In December 2014, Plasma Processes and Polymers, a journal published by Wiley-VCH, published the first special issue on “plasma & cancer” based on the papers presented at IWPCT-1. Plasma Processes and Polymers subsequently published two more special issues on “plasma & cancer” based on the papers presented at IWPCT-2 (held in 2015 in Nagoya, Japan) and IWPCT-3 (held in 2016 in Washington DC, U.S.A.). Starting with IWPCT-4 (held in 2017 in Paris, France) a new IEEE journal, Transactions on Radiation and Plasma Medical Sciences, agreed to publish all subsequent special issues related to papers presented at IWPCT. Also in 2017 the International Scientific Committee established the Bob Barker student award, which is bestowed on the best paper presented by a student at IWPCT.
M. Laroussi, ISC Chair (2014-2017) M. Keidar, ISC Co-Chair (2014-2017)
A. Bogaerts, ISC Chair (2017-present) D.B. Graves ISC Co-Chair (2017-present)