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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter May 12, 2014

Applications of Raman spectroscopy to the urinary bladder for cancer diagnostics

Anwendungen der Raman-Spektroskopie für die Krebsdiagnostik der Harnblase
  • Laura T. Kerr EMAIL logo , Katarina Domijan , Ivor Cullen and Bryan M. Hennelly


Biomolecular changes associated with cancer progression can be identified using Raman spectroscopy, allowing for this technique to be utilized as a non-invasive tool for the diagnosis of bladder cancer. Applications of Raman spectroscopy for diagnostics in real-time have consistently produced higher sensitivities and specificities than current clinical methods. This technique can be applied in vivo during bladder visualization (cystoscopic) procedures as an “optical biopsy” or in vitro to cells obtained from urine cytology specimens. This review follows the evolution of studies in this field from the first in vitro experiment to the most recent in vivo application, identifies how diagnostic algorithms are developed, and provides molecular information associated with the etiology of the biochemical continuum of disease progression. Future prospects for the application of Raman spectroscopy in bladder cancer diagnostics are also discussed.


Biomolekulare Änderungen, die mit der Tumorprogression in Verbindung stehen, können mittels Raman-Spektroskopie identifiziert werden, was es erlaubt dieses Verfahren als nicht-invasives Werkzeug zur Diagnose von Blasenkrebs zu verwenden. Raman-Spektroskopie-Anwendungen für die Diagnose in Echtzeit haben durchweg höhere Empfindlichkeiten und Spezifitäten als aktuelle klinische Methoden. Das Verfahren kann in vivo während einer Blasenspiegelung (Zystoskopie) als “optische Biopsie” oder in vitro an Zellen, die aus einer Urin-Zytologie gewonnen wurden, eingesetzt werden. Der vorliegende Review-Artikel betrachtet die Entwicklung in diesem Bereich beginnend mit dem ersten In-Vitro-Experiment bis hin zu den neuesten In-Vivo-Anwendungen, zeigt auf, wie Diagnose-Algorithmen entwickelt wurden und liefert molekulare Informationen, die mit der Ätiologie des biochemischen Kontinuums des Krankheitsverlaufs assoziiert sind. Außerdem werden die Zukunftsperspektiven für die Anwendung der Raman-Spektroskopie in der Blasenkrebs-Diagnostik diskutiert.

Corresponding author: Laura T. Kerr, Department of Electronic Engineering, National University of Ireland Maynooth, Maynooth, Co. Kildare, Ireland, e-mail:


This research was conducted with the financial support of Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) under Grant Number 11/SIRG/I2140.


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Received: 2014-2-19
Revised: 2014-4-11
Accepted: 2014-4-15
Published Online: 2014-5-12
Published in Print: 2014-8-1

©2014 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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