[Illinois] Cancer Community Symposium 2012: Chemical Imaging for Histopathology: An Emerging Route for Molecular and Structural Analysis of Tissues

By Michael Walsh

Department of Pathology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL

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Mid-Infrared (IR) spectroscopic imaging is an emerging approach to derive chemical images from tissues based on their inherent biochemistry. Histologic diagnosis is the gold standard for evaluating the presence and severity of most diseases. Current histopathological techniques use of panel of special stains and immunohistochemistry (IHC) to assess tissue architecture, determine cell types present and to classify disease. Here, we report on the evaluation of an automated means to accurate histologic recognition using IR spectroscopic imaging. This method does not need dyes or probes and dispenses with human input but relies on computational approaches to provide decisions. Recent advances in IR spectroscopic imaging for tissue histopathology with a focus on breast cancer diagnosis will be presented. IR imaging coupled with computational approaches has the potential be a powerful adjunct to current histopathological procedures, with the ability to take a single unstained tissue section and give decisions on the cell types present and to provide novel chemical information to the pathologist in a useful format.

Cancer Community At Illinois Symposium 2012

April 5-6, 2012: Connecting patient care, research, and scientific advancement

Symposium Premise
This on-campus research symposium aims to bring together members of campus and the surrounding community to foster interdisciplinary discussions on cancer research and its affects on patient care. In order to increase understanding and awareness, we will discuss in an open forum with research talks, poster presentations, and panel discussions. We invite community members, clinicians, and researchers from UIUC and other Midwest regional institutions from departments ranging from the social sciences to basic sciences to engineering and medicine.
The symposium features invited talks from nationally-recognized cancer researchers, oral presentations from UIUC faculty and students, and poster sessions. We encourage student researchers from UIUC and from other regional schools to apply (travel awards are available).

About CC@I Symposium
The Cancer Community at Illinois (CC@I) Symposium is organized by a group of students on the University of Illinois campus to bridge the areas of social science, basic sciences to engineering and medicine as they relate to cancer. The symposium mission is to: 1) Facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration and understanding that transcends established departmental affiliation; 2) Foster an increased understanding of the social and environmental factors affecting patients; and 3) Develop unique vantage points afforded by interactive dialogue between and among the various cancer research disciplines. In order to accomplish this, the symposium will engage the local patient community through use of the nascent social and support efforts of the Mills Breast Cancer Institute, Carle Hospital, and regional clinical collaborators.
If you are interested in other CC@I events or the program in general, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


My current research as a postdoctoral researcher in the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign broadly focused on disease diagnosis using FT-IR spectroscopy and understanding the chemical changes associated with the disease process.

Much of my postdoctoral work has focused on the translational development of mid-infrared imaging modalities towards clinical translation. This has involved developing FT-IR imaging and related computational tools towards being a rapid, objective, non-destructive and automated infrared imaging approach for cell type identification and for disease diagnosis/prognosis, with a focus on breast and prostate cancer.

I have also worked extensively towards developing the use of high-resolution FT-IR imaging modalities for the identification and chemical characterization of small but clinically important cell types and tissue structures. The implementation of high-resolution imaging will be a critical component of developing FT-IR imaging as a robust and comprehensive diagnostic tool for clinical translation.

-From Dr. Walsh's website


Authors: Michael J Walsh (Speaker), David Mayerich, Suman Setty, Andre Kajdacsy-Balla, and Rohit Bhargava

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Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  • Michael Walsh (2012), "[Illinois] Cancer Community Symposium 2012: Chemical Imaging for Histopathology: An Emerging Route for Molecular and Structural Analysis of Tissues," http://nanohub.org/resources/13946.

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Beckman Institute, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL


Obaid Sarvana, NanoBio Node

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign