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Ann Biomed Eng. 2012 Feb;40(2):277-91. doi: 10.1007/s10439-012-0512-9. Epub 2012 Jan 19.

Two-photon and second harmonic microscopy in clinical and translational cancer research.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY 14627, USA.


Application of two-photon microscopy (TPM) to translational and clinical cancer research has burgeoned over the last several years, as several avenues of pre-clinical research have come to fruition. In this review, we focus on two forms of TPM-two-photon excitation fluorescence microscopy, and second harmonic generation microscopy-as they have been used for investigating cancer pathology in ex vivo and in vivo human tissue. We begin with discussion of two-photon theory and instrumentation particularly as applicable to cancer research, followed by an overview of some of the relevant cancer research literature in areas that include two-photon imaging of human tissue biopsies, human skin in vivo, and the rapidly developing technology of two-photon microendoscopy. We believe these and other evolving two-photon methodologies will continue to help translate cancer research from the bench to the bedside, and ultimately bring minimally invasive methods for cancer diagnosis and treatment to therapeutic reality.

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