Journal of Biomedical Optics • Open AccessNear-infrared diffuse correlation spectroscopy in cancer diagnosis and therapy monitoring
A novel near-infrared (NIR) diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS) for tumor blood flow measurement is introduced in this review paper. DCS measures speckle fluctuations of NIR diffuse light in tissue, which are sensitive to the motions of red blood cells. DCS offers several attractive new features for tumor blood flow measurement such as noninvasiveness, portability, high temporal resolution, and relatively large penetration depth. DCS technology has been utilized for continuous measurement of tumor blood flow before, during, and after cancer therapies. In those pilot investigations, DCS hemodynamic measurements add important new variables into the mix for differentiation of benign from malignant tumors and for prediction of treatment outcomes. It is envisaged that with more clinical applications in large patient populations, DCS might emerge as an important method of choice for bedside management of cancer therapy, and it will certainly provide important new information about cancer physiology that may be of use in diagnosis.