Invited Talk (Physics)

Time-resolved spectroscopy imaging of endogenous fluorophores in living cells and tissues: new trends in biomedical diagnostics

doc. Mgr. Alžbeta Chorvátová, PhD. International Laser Centre,
Bratislava, Slovakia

Abstract

Non-invasive monitoring of processes underlying structural and functional changes of living systems in their real environmental conditions is a prerequisite for understanding their alterations in pathological situations. Internal and external fluorophores, studied by multi-spectral and lifetime detection, represent an effective mean for non-invasive investigation of living cells and tissues. Spectral characteristics of each endogenous fluorophore are unique and can therefore provide their specific identification and separation in complex biological samples. Moreover, time-resolved fluorescence decay patterns are additional effective means of fluorophore separation, as spectrally-overlapping signals can often be segregated by distinct fluorescence lifetimes. Recent advances in technology, particularly combination of fluorescence spectroscopy with time-resolved detection provides great potential for gathering detailed information on biochemical, functional and structural changes in biomolecular complexes directly in living cells and tissues. This potential is reflected in better diagnostics capabilities to distinguish, for example, between normal and diseased tissues. As a result, a number of combined approaches, representing various hybrids between time-resolved, spectroscopic and imaging systems, have recently been developed to explore the use of endogenous fluorescence in cells and tissues for biomedical research investigations. This lecture will give an overview of time-resolved spectroscopy imaging of endogenous fluorophores in living cells and tissues aimed for biomedical diagnostics.