Advanced multimodal methods in biomedicine : Raman spectroscopy and digital holographic microscopy
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Moving towards label-free technologies is essential for many clinical and research applications. Raman spectroscopy is a powerful tool in the field of biomedicine for label-free cell characterisation and disease diagnosis, owing to its high chemical specificity. However, Raman scattering is a relatively weak process and can require long acquisition times, thus hampering its integration to clinical technologies. Multimodal analysis is currently pushing the boundaries in biomedicine, obtaining more information than would be possible using a single mode and overcoming any limitations specific to a single technique. Digital holographic microscopy (DHM) is a rapid and label-free quantitative phase imaging modality, providing complementary information to Raman spectroscopy, and is thus an ideal candidate for combination in a multimodal system. Firstly, this thesis explores the use of wavelength modulated Raman spectroscopy (WMRS), for the classification of immune cell subsets. Following this a multimodal approach, combining Raman spectroscopy and DHM, is demonstrated, where each technique is considered individually and in combination. The complementary modalities provide a wealth of information (both chemical and morphological) for cell characterisation, which is a step towards achieving a label-free technology for the identification of human immune cells. The suitability of WMRS to discriminate between closely related neuronal cell types is also explored. Furthermore optical spectroscopic techniques are useful for the analysis of food and beverages. The use of Raman and fluorescence spectroscopy to successfully discriminate between various whisky and extra-virgin olive oil brands is demonstrated, which may aid the detection of counterfeit or adulterated samples. The use of a compact Raman device is utilised, demonstrating the potential for in-field analysis. Finally, monodisperse and highly spherical nanoparticles are synthesised. A short study demonstrates the potential for these nanoparticles to benefit the techniques of surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy and optical trapping, by way of minimising variability.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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