Three-minute thesis: No hard feelings – using tissue stiffness for non-invasive cancer detection


Gavrielle Untracht, University of Western Australia

PhD title

Cellular resolution volumetric structural and functional imaging of tissue using fibre-optic needle probes


“In many applications, such as the study of cancer progression, there is a need for high-resolution imaging of changing structural, mechanical, and compositional properties of tissue. This research seeks to develop cellular-resolution needle-based imaging probes for optical coherence micro-elastography (OCE) and Raman spectroscopy with the ultimate goal of enabling less invasive diagnostic imaging in vivo. These probes take advantage of the tissue changes that occur during homeostasis and the onset of disease as a contrast mechanism for imaging. Designs will be progressed towards high-resolution functional imaging probes for use in humans in vivo.”

The finals of the 2017 Asia-Pacific Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, which challenges PhD students to communicate their research in a snappy three-minute presentation, were held on the 29 September at the University of Queensland, St Lucia Campus. Competitors came from 55 Universities from across Australia, New Zealand and North and South-East Asia. 

The presentations were judged by distinguished figures in Australian science including Cosmos editor-in-chief Elizabeth Finkel.

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