Temperature-dependent terahertz imaging of excised oral malignant melanoma

Yookyeong Carolyn Sim, Kang Min Ahn, Jae Yeon Park, Chan Sik Park, Joo Hiuk Son

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


We imaged a single case of oral malignant melanoma using terahertz (THz) reflection imaging at room temperature (20 °C) and below freezing (-20 °C). A malignant nodule beneath the oral tissue surface was visualized using 2-D and B-scan THz imaging techniques. The THz images were well correlated with the histological findings. The nodule was found to have lower water content than that of normal cells, and this water effect may have influenced the THz refractive index and absorption coefficient at 20 °C. The THz spectroscopic image of the frozen tissue at -20 °C showed better contrast because of the lack of liquid water; this implies that there are significant structural differences between malignant oral melanoma cells and normal mucosal cells. The better contrast in the frozen tissue images was due to the greater penetration of THz radiation into the sample. This temperaturedependent THz imaging approach demonstrated the feasibility of accurate imaging of the oral tumor tissue.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6549217
Pages (from-to)368-373
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Transactions on Terahertz Science and Technology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Medical imaging
  • Terahertz (THz) imaging
  • Terahertz radiation


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