New non-invasive technique to detect skin cancers

New York, July 7 (IANS) In a major breakthrough, a new non-invasive technique that allows clinicians to accurately detect various forms of skin cancer has been developed.

The new Raman spectroscopy method could be an improvement upon the current clinical “gold standard” non-invasive technique, called dermoscopy, which is a highly subjective method. The Raman spectroscopy, hitherto used in chemical experiments, is named after prominent Indian scientist Sir C.V. Raman, the winner of the Nobel physics prize in 1930.

“The non-invasive and label-free nature of Raman spectroscopy enables the application in various medical fields. The method could be applied through an endoscope in order to reach internal organs,” said co-author Johannes Schleusener from department of dermatology, venereology and allergy, Charite – Universitatsmediz in Berlin.

“Besides the detection of skin cancer, applications to detect cancer of the urinary bladder, esophagus or cervix have been shown,” Schleusener said.

By using Raman spectroscopy, Schleusener and his team found that malignant melanoma could be detected with an accuracy of 91 percent and non-melanoma skin cancers could be detected with accuracy between 73 percent and 85 percent.

The study appeared in the journal Experimental Dermatology.

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