Skin cancer is among the most common forms of cancer in the USA, Australia, and Europe and is increasing in incidence in other parts of the world. The rising incidence of non-melanoma skin cancer, such as basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), makes the investigation of the tumors of this type to represent a subject of maximum importance at this time. The precise visualization and understanding of cellular and sub-cellular structures specific to cancer tumors is essential for establishing a correct diagnostic at a very early stage, as well as for the efficient monitoring of the tumor evolution and of the effects of the administered therapy. We propose to develop and use a commercially unavailable microscopy system, FASNOM, to advance the current understanding on the morphological and autofluorescent nanoscale features found in freshly excised human non-melanoma skin cancer and normal perilesional skin samples. The diagnostic potential of fluorescence imaging and spectroscopy lies in the ability to noninvasively probe alterations in tissue morphology and biochemistry that occur during malignant progression. In this purpose we propose to exploit nanoscale information on the properties of endogenous fluorescent biomolecules present in human skin in order to distinguish between normal, pre-cancerous and cancerous epithelial tissues of different types with high specificity and sensitivity. In the proposed project high importance will be given to identifying nanoscale (<10nm resolution) information by FASNOM that can be related to sub-cellular modifications that occur because of hyperactivity or epidermal hyperproliferation in order to advance the current understanding on the pathogenesis of non-melanoma skin cancer tumors. Imaging at higher resolution than reported up until now will extend the current limited understanding of the biological basis for optical changes associated with neoplastic transformation of pre-cancerous and cancerous tissue.
Project duration: 54 months

Project value:  3.000.000,00 RON (from the state budget) + 254.200,00 (co-financing)



  • Coordinator: University Politehnica Bucharest, Center for Microscopy-Microanalysis and Information Processing
  • Partner 1: Floreasca Emergency Clinic Hospital Bucharest
  • Partner 2: University Valahia of Targoviste
  • Partner 3: SC Wing Computer Group SRL

Funding Agency :

Executive Unit for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding (UEFISCDI)