HYPERAM – Imaging method for rapid tissue diagnosis

In the Leibniz Research Network HYPERAM, three Leibniz institutes have joined forces from the fields of biosciences, astrophysics, electronics, and medicine. They are combining their interdisciplinary knowledge in order to develop rapid, label-free and non-invasive tissue diagnosis methods based on wide-field Raman imaging. This will open up new possibilities for clinically evaluating tissue already during surgery using functional Raman images to reveal tumor margins, thus resulting in shorter and more precise surgical operations in oncology, for example. Among other things, the project aims to translate the method of integral field spectroscopy, which was born from astrophysics and is normally used to study large areas of the night sky, to biomedical imaging applications. The overall project started in 2016 and is planned to run for three years with approximately one million Euros in funding from the Leibniz competition.

In this project, FBH and its Laser Sensors Lab are developing diode lasers optimized for the Raman based tissue diagnosis, as an important centerpiece of the system. The challenge lies in combining the high laser powers required for imaging with the spectral characteristics needed for spectroscopy and Shifted Excitation Resonance Raman Difference Spectroscopy. At the same time, the maximum permissible radiation doses must not be exceeded. FBH is therefore applying two approaches. One is a light source at 785 nm wavelength and up to 4 watt output power is developed. A second is a light source in the blue-green spectral range of 457 nm wavelength, a frequency range in which strong fluorescence occurs. Therefore that light source is realized as a dual-wavelength laser suitable for Shifted Excitation Resonance Raman Difference Spectroscopy. This allows separating Raman signals and fluorescence in the applied imaging method.

HypeRam (duration 01.06.2016 - 31.05.2019)