School of Physics & Astronomy

Biomedical Imaging



Optics and spectroscopy have the potential to underpin fundamental advances in our understanding of molecular and cellular processes. This potential may be realised in nanoscale studies of single molecules, through the mesoscale of individual live cells up to the macroscale of in-vivo disease diagnosis and imaging.

Recent developments in laser and light detection technology allow imaging of biological materials with unprecedented detail. In particular, imaging techniques based on molecular spectroscopy can detect small chemical alterations in cells and tissue with sub-micron scale resolution, providing insight into cellular processes and allowing label-free diagnosis of diseases.

Research Areas

Nanoscale Characterisation of Materials

  • Characterisation of peptide nanotubes by integrated atomic force microscopy and polarised Raman spectroscopy.
  • Tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy for diffraction-unlimited molecular imaging (e.g. lipid bilayers).
  • Characterisation of graphene.

Label-Free Raman Microscopy for Live Cells

      • Differentiation of stem cells.
      • Molecular mapping of parasite-host cell interaction.
      • Toxicology assays.

Imaging and Diagnosis of Cancer

      • Development of selective sampling methods for fast imaging of tissue.
      • Spectral histopathology of skin and breast cancers.




  • Ioan Notingher
  • Kenny Kong
  • Marta Larraona Puy
  • Flavius Pascut

Suggested Reading

Equipment & Techniques

  • Raman microscope for live cell imaging
  • Integrated AFM-Raman microscope
  • Raman microscope for tissue imaging



School of Physics and Astronomy

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham NG7 2RD

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