A deep dive into tissue

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Our cover story in this edition relates how Raman imaging allows for the examination of cells and tissue, which can help to analyze a whole range of pathologies and conditions. Bioimaging is most effective when focusing on a particular anomaly inside or outside of the body.

Recent unrelated research shows that the brain is also most focused when concentrating on a single problem. Using NIR spectroscopy, a team from University College London (UCL) recently devised a unique system to noninvasively measure the oxygenation of an enzyme called cytochrome c oxidase, which corresponds with metabolism in tissue. With data from a number of subjects, UCL psychology professor Nilli Lavie and colleagues showed through experiments involving simple and complex tasks that cues outside the brain’s focus of attention produced an insignificant response within the brain. There are thus limits to how people receive and process information, and they have a finite amount of energy to use.

Studies such as this were set to be explored in the open at Neuroscience 2020, which was canceled as a result of continued uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic. The annual conference is run by the Society for Neuroscience and is a place where researchers and product developers can network about imaging and studying the brain. Virtual resources will be available to glean online at

In the meantime, science goes on, as readers of BioPhotonics will attest. In the cover story, Eva M. Brauchle, Daniel A. Carvajal Berrio, Katja Schenke-Layland, Andrea Richter, and Eleni Kallis build a clear picture of the way the Raman effect, or the inelastic scattering of excitation light by molecules, creates a “spectral fingerprint.” This discovery has implications for cancer diagnosis and scar tissue analysis. Read about the possibilities here.

Elsewhere in this edition, authors Pantea Tavakolian, Sohrab Roointan, Konesh Sivagurunathan, and Andreas Mandelis explain how a thermophotonic imaging technology called truncated-correlation photothermal coherence tomography can be used to capture in 3D everything from dental health to cancer in subjects. Learn more about this exciting development here. Also, Darren Robey outlines how infrared spectroscopy with a laser-based imaging system allows for the detection and analysis of microplastics. Explore this topic here.

Contributing editor Farooq Ahmed writes about how chip-based technology has spurred the use of hand-held microscopy from the bedside to testing in the field. See the latest here. And in “Biopinion,” Christopher G. Leburn relates how a collaborative project between research institutions and private companies has created a three-photon imaging platform that will track a variety of conditions. Read the story from one of the principal members of this effort here.

Enjoy the issue!

Published: September 2020

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