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Trends Biotechnol. 2006 Oct;24(10):455-62. Epub 2006 Aug 28.

Chemical mapping of tumor progression by FT-IR imaging: towards molecular histopathology.

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Université Victor Segalen Bordeaux 2, CNRS UMR 5084, CNAB, Bio-Organic Chemistry Group, 146 rue Léo Saignat, 33076 Bordeaux Cedex, France.


Fourier-transform infrared (FT-IR) spectro-imaging enables global analysis of samples, with resolution close to the cellular level. Recent studies have shown that FT-IR imaging enables determination of the biodistribution of several molecules of interest (carbohydrates, lipids, proteins) for tissue analysis without pre-analytical modification of the sample such as staining. Molecular structure information is also available from the same analysis, notably for protein secondary structure and fatty acyl chain peroxidation level. Thus, several cancer markers can be identified from FT-IR tissue images, enabling accurate discrimination between healthy and tumor areas. FT-IR imaging applications are now able to provide unique chemical and morphological information about tissue status. With the fast image acquisition provided by modern mid-infrared imaging systems, it is now envisaged to analyze cerebral tumor exereses in delays compatible with neurosurgery. Accordingly, we propose to take FT-IR imaging into consideration for the development of new molecular histopathology tools.

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