Biofluid diagnostics by FTIR spectroscopy : a platform technology for cancer detection

Sala, Alexandra and Anderson, David J. and Brennan, Paul M. and Butler, Holly J. and Cameron, James M. and Jenkinson, Michael D. and Rinaldi, Christopher and Theakstone, Ashton G. and Baker, Matthew J. (2020) Biofluid diagnostics by FTIR spectroscopy : a platform technology for cancer detection. Cancer Letters, 477. pp. 122-130. ISSN 1872-7980 (

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Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) has been largely employed by scientific researchers to improve diagnosis and treatment of cancer, using various biofluids and tissues. The technology has proved to be easy to use, rapid and cost-effective for analysis on human blood serum to discriminate between cancer versus healthy control samples. The high sensitivity and specificity achievable during samples classification aided by machine learning algorithms, offers an opportunity to transform cancer referral pathways, as it has been demonstrated in a unique and recent prospective clinical validation study on brain tumours. We herein highlight the importance of early detection in cancer research using FTIR, discussing the technique, the suitability of serum for analysis and previous studies, with special focus on pre-clinical factors and clinical translation requirements and development.