Development of an endoscopic fluorescence image guided OCT probe for oral cancer detection

R. J. McNichols, A. Gowda, B. A. Bell, R. M. Johnigan, K. H. Calhoun, M. Motamedi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Oral squamous cell carcinoma is a disease which progresses through a number of well-defined morphological and biochemical changes. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a rapidly-evolving, non-invasive imaging modality which allows detailed probing of subsurface tissue structures with resolution on the order of microns. While this technique offers tremendous potential as a diagnostic tool for detection and characterization of oral cancer, OCT imaging is presently associated with a field of view (FOV) on the order of millimeters, and acquisition time on the order of seconds. Thus, OCT's utility as a rapid cancer screening technique is presently limited. On the other hand, imaging of tissue autofluorescence provides a very rapid, high-throughput method for cancer screening. However, while autofluorescence measures may be sensitive to cancer, they are often non-specific and lead to a large number of false positives. In the present work, we have developed a fluorescence image guided optical coherence tomographic (FIG-OCT) probe in which tissue autofluorescence images are simultaneously used to guide OCT image acquisition of suspicious regions in real time. We have begun preclinical pilot studies with this instrument in a DMBA-induced model of oral cancer in the hamster cheek pouch. Initial results indicate that the FIG-OCT approach shows promise as a rapid and effective tool for screening of oral cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23-30
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Autofluorescence
  • Cancer detection
  • Fluorescence Imaging
  • Optical coherence Tomography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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