Objective 4

To determine the requirements of instrumentation suitable for use in the clinic


  • Yet to be assigned


  • Identify minimum instrumentation requirement (e.g. materials, speed, resolution, footprint etc) for the clinical arena through the interdisciplinarity of network members
  • Provide a focal point for established and emerging industries to develop next generation healthcare technologies
  • Identify grand challenges for technological development of clinical spectroscopic instrumentation for industrial partners
  • Provide clinical access via network members to enable in situ trials of novel instrumentation

Reasons and added value

Most infrared hyperspectral imaging systems are state-of-the-art research grade instruments designed for the research laboratory. They are analytical instruments rather than purpose built medical diagnostics instruments. They are expensive and their designs are not necessarily compatible with a clinical environment. They often come with “bells and whistles” appropriate for many different
analytical applications. It is clear that many of these functions are simply not required for many clinical applications.

It is important to ask therefore “what is the minimum quality of instrumentation and the minimum number of functions/flexibility that is required for a clinical FTIR system/microscope”. This has not been evaluated since it very much depends on the system under study. The requirements will be different for applications involving tissue, cells, biofluids, whether the instrument is to be situated in an operating theatre or a pathology lab, whether the samples will be frozen or not etc.

Again, it is only through collaboration with the network partners that such questions can be answered. In the case of Raman spectroscopy the situation is further advanced in that there are already Raman probes that have been developed specifically for clinical application but again, each research group has their own design.