Journal of oral pathology & medicine : official publication of the International Association of Oral Pathologists and the American Academy of Oral Pathology

Red and far-red fluorescent dyes for the characterization of head and neck cancer at the cellular level.

PMID 25779631


Primary upper aerodigestive tract malignancy remains a cancer having a poor prognosis, despite current progress in treatment, due to a generally late diagnosis. We conducted a preliminary assessment of five dyes approved for human use for the imaging of head and neck tissues at the cellular level, which could be considered for clinical examination. We investigated fluorescence endomicroscopic images on fresh samples obtained from head and neck surgeries after staining with hypericin, methylene blue, toluidine blue, patent blue or indocyanine green to provide a preliminary consideration as to whether these images contain enough information for identification of non-pathologic and pathologic tissues. The distribution pattern of dye has been examined using probe-based confocal laser endomicroscopy (pCLE) in ex vivo specimens and compared with corresponding histology. In most samples, the image quality provided by pCLE with both dyes allowed pathologists to recognize histological characteristics to identify the tissues. The combination of pCLE imaging with these dyes provides interpretable images close to conventional histology; a promising clinical tool to assist physicians in examination of upper aerodigestive tract, as long as depth imaging issues can be overcome.

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Hypericin from Hypericum perforatum, ~95% (HPLC)