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Label-Free Assessment of Molecular and Structural Abnormalities for Point-of-Care Skin Cancer Diagnostics

Seed Grants
Awarded in 2012

Interdisciplinary Initiatives Program Round 6 - 2012

Audrey Ellerbee, Electrical Engineering
Jean Yuh Tang, Dermatology

The primary diagnostic for skin cancer - the most widely occurring cancer in the US – is visual inspection by a primary care physician (PCPs) followed by expert examination by a dermatologist / pathologist. We aim to develop a new instrument capable of quantitative assessment of skin lesions that is suitable for routine screening by PCPs, thereby increasing their certainty during initial inspection and facilitating early detection. Our strategy is to combine two techniques for optical imaging known to individually be sensitive to morphological and molecular changes associated with skin cancer. The combined modality is expected to outperform either modality alone and visual inspection.