Image-guided needle procedures - such as taking biopsies in screening cancerous tumours - are becoming increasingly important in clinical practice.
Today, physicians are severely hampered by the lack of precision in positioning the needle tip. Real-time tissue-characterization feedback at the needle tip during these procedures can significantly improve the outcome of diagnosis and treatment, and reduce the cost of oncology treatment. Spectral tissue sensing using photonic needles has the promise to be a valuable diagnostic tool for screening tumours, as shown by several clinical trials. However, for widespread adoption the cost and size of these photonic needle systems - in particular the spectrometer console - needs to be improved dramatically.
InSPECT aims at overcoming today's challenges and developing and integrating photonic building blocks for low-cost miniaturized spectral tissue sensing devices.