Dr. Francisco E. Robles (BME, Georgia Institute of Technology)
Dr. Wilbur Lam (BME, Georgia Institute of Technology)
Dr. David Myers (BME, Georgia Institute of Technology)
Dr. Marcus Cicerone (Chemistry and Biochemistry, Georgia Institute of Technology)
Dr. Shu Jia (BME, Georgia Institute of Technology)
Deep-Ultraviolet Microscopy and Spectroscopy of Biological Samples
Ultraviolet (UV) spectroscopy is a powerful tool for quantitative analysis of biochemicals, however its application to molecular imaging and microscopy has been limited. The use of deep-ultraviolet (e.g., 220-450 nm) light for microscopy offers many potential advantages over traditional methods, including higher spatial resolution due to the light’s shorter wavelength; and, when combined with spectroscopy, quantitative information with access to many endogenous molecules that play an important role in cell and tissue function and structure. In this work, we first demonstrate the unique capabilities of deep-UV microscopy and spectroscopy in characterization of biomolecules within live cells by extracting their optical attenuation and dispersion spectra. We then extend our measurements to several important biochemicals and established a database for optical properties of these biomolecules in the deep-UV region. By leveraging the biochemical specificity of UV spectroscopy for molecular imaging, we developed a novel label-free assay based on multi-spectral deep-UV microscopy by which we explored different clinical applications such as hematology analysis as well as cellular phenotyping through imaging of blood and bone marrow smears as well as cultured cells. The results of this work can pave the way for development of label-free diagnostic systems for use in clinical and point-of-care settings.