Hyperspectral Raman microscopy can accurately differentiate single cells of different human thyroid nodules

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12 Scopus citations


We report on the use of line-scan hyperspectral Raman microscopy in combination with multivariate statistical analyses for identifying and classifying single cells isolated from clinical samples of human thyroid nodules based on their intrinsic Raman spectral signatures. A total of 248 hyperspectral Raman images of single cells from benign thyroid (n = 127) and classic variant of papillary carcinoma (n = 121) nodules were collected. Spectral differences attributed to phenylalanine, tryptophan, proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids were identified for benign and papillary carcinoma cells. Using principal component analysis and linear discriminant analysis, cells were identified with 97% diagnostic accuracy. In addition, preliminary data of cells from follicular adenoma (n = 20), follicular carcinoma (n = 25), and follicular variant of papillary carcinoma (n = 18) nodules suggest the feasibility of further discrimination of subtypes. Our findings indicate that hyperspectral Raman microscopy can potentially be developed into an objective approach for analyzing single cells from fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsies to enable the minimally invasive diagnosis of “indeterminate” thyroid nodules and other challenging cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4411-4421
Number of pages11
JournalBiomedical Optics Express
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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