AbstractThe University of ManchesterGeraldine MonjardezDoctor of PhilosophyThe feasibility of Fourier Transform Infrared imaging spectroscopy in discriminating benign prostatic hyperplasia from Prostate cancer in blood serum samples21/01/2013 The feasibility of Fourier transform infrared (FTIR)-imaging spectroscopy as a tool to discriminate samples from patients suffering from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostate cancer (CaP) samples in blood serum was investigated. Prostate cancer is known to be an age related disease, with the risk of developing the disease dramatically increasing in men past forty years old. Currently the PSA blood test is notoriously unreliable and is non specific for CaP thus leading to overtreatment of the disease. It is important therefore to develop diagnostic method that is non-invasive, reliable, and specific for CaP.In order to achieve the objective of establishing a robust protocol, which could be applied to a clinical study, obtaining optimal sample preparation for the FTIR analysis of serum smears, had to be achieved. A protocol was developed to prepare the serum samples prior to their FTIR analysis. First, the samples were centrifuged with ultrafiltration devices of different sizes to obtain several fractions which were then smeared to obtain thin films of serum. The spectra from the larger (>100 kDa components) and medium (containing the 10-100 kDa components) fractions were utilised for both a pilot and a clinical study, while the spectra from the smaller fractions (containing the 3-10 and 100 kDa fraction, the sensitivity value was calculated to be 97.8% and the specificity value was calculated to be 44.3% while the sensitivity and the specificity value for the 10 to 100 kDa fraction were calculated to be 78.9% and 60% respectively. A complementary study using mass spectrometry was carried out on healthy and diseased samples to identify the components contained within the different fractions and determine whether they could be correlated with the components identified from the spectral features of the FTIR data. While no quantitative information was obtained from this study, the components found in the different fractions were identified, confirming the results of the FTIR studies.