NEW APPROACHES IN THE NON-INVASIVE DIAGNOSIS OF ORAL CANCER
USING FTIR SPECTROSCOPY ON BLOOD AND SALIVA SAMPLES

Name: Marcela Marçal Thebit
Type: PhD thesis
Publication date: 29/09/2021
Advisor:

Namesort descending Role
Sonia Alves Gouvea Advisor *

Examining board:

Namesort descending Role
Adriana Madeira Alvares da Silva Internal Examiner *
Glaucia Rodrigues de Abreu Internal Examiner *
Luis Felipe das Chagas e Silva de Carvalho External Examiner *
Patrick Wander Endlich External Examiner *
Sonia Alves Gouvea Advisor *

Summary: THEBIT, M.M. New approaches in the non-invasive diagnosis of oral cancer using
FTIR spectroscopy on blood and saliva samples. 2021. 75f. Thesis (Doctoral in
Biotechnology) - Postgraduation Biotechnological Program, UFES, Espírito Santo. Brazil.
Oral cancer is usually diagnosed through invasive methods, for although systemic
changes can be easily detected, the identification of an effective systemic biomarker using
a simple and affordable approach has yet to take place. Attenuated total reflection Fourier
transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) appears as an alternative for the chemical and structural
characterization of organic and inorganic materials, including liquid samples as serum,
plasma and saliva and a possible bridge between molecular analysis and clinical practice.
Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate if ATR-FTIR spectroscopy can be applied
as a tool in oral cancer screening through the analysis of plasma and salivary samples.
Methodology: Plasma and saliva samples from oral cancer patients and controls were
analyzed by ATR-FTIR spectroscopy. Experimental data were fed into the MATLAB
2018b software and them analyzed through two different routines in order to identify points
of differentiations between the groups. Results: Biochemical analysis of the plasma
samples through ATR-FTIR yielded 92% sensitivity and 100% specificity in differentiating
between groups. The biggest difference was found between peaks that might be related
to nucleic acids and nucleic acid phosphate. Pilot study with salivary samples reached
similar accuracy Conclusion: We conclude that ATR-FTIR successfully discriminated
between oral cancer patients and healthy subjects using plasma samples, with nucleic
acids being found as major biomarkers.Key words: biomarker, ATR-FTIR, nucleic acids, oral cancer, molecular diagnosis

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