Research Papers:

Renal mass biopsy using Raman spectroscopy identifies malignant and benign renal tumors: potential for pre-operative diagnosis

Yufei Liu, Zhebin Du, Jin Zhang and Haowen Jiang _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:36012-36019. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.16419

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Yufei Liu1,2,*, Zhebin Du3,*, Jin Zhang3, Haowen Jiang1,2

1Department of Urology, Huashan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

2Fudan Institute of Urology, Huashan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

3Department of Urology, Ren Ji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Haowen Jiang, email: [email protected]

Jin Zhang, email: [email protected]

Keywords: Raman spectroscopy, renal tumor, biopsy, non-invasive, pre-operative diagnosis

Received: October 06, 2016     Accepted: March 10, 2017     Published: March 21, 2017


The accuracy of renal mass biopsy to diagnose malignancy can be affected by multiple factors. Here, we investigated the feasibility of Raman spectroscopy to distinguish malignant and benign renal tumors using biopsy specimens. Samples were collected from 63 patients who received radical or partial nephrectomy, mass suspicious of cancer and distal parenchyma were obtained from resected kidney using an 18-gauge biopsy needle. Four Raman spectra were obtained for each sample, and Discriminant Analysis was applied for data analysis. A total of 383 Raman spectra were eventually gathered and each type of tumor had its characteristic spectrum. Raman could separate tumoral and normal tissues with an accuracy of 82.53%, and distinguish malignant and benign tumors with a sensitivity of 91.79% and specificity of 71.15%. It could classify low-grade and high-grade tumors with an accuracy of 86.98%. Besides, clear cell renal carcinoma was differentiated with oncocytoma and angiomyolipoma with accuracy of 100% and 89.25%, respectively. And histological subtypes of cell carcinoma were distinguished with an accuracy of 93.48%. When compared with final pathology and biopsy, Raman spectroscopy was able to correctly identify 7 of 11 “missed” biopsy diagnoses. These results suggested that Raman may serve as a promising non-invasive approach in the future for pre-operative diagnosis.

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