Application of Optical Methods in Blood Studies upon Evaluation of Severity Rate of Diffuse Liver Pathology
Most studies concerning a possible protective role of carotenoids against cancer focus on serum carotenoid levels. We have used Raman microspectroscopy to study the intracellular amounts of carotenoids in lymphocytes of lung cancer patients and of healthy individuals. Our results indicate a significant decrease of carotenoids in lung carcinoma patients compared with healthy individuals, particularly in adenocarcinoma patients. Carotenoid supplementation raised the serum concentration in 2 lung cancer patients up to normal levels, whereas intracellular content remained significantly lower. This indicates that carotenoid uptake by lymphocytes is not only dependent on serum carotenoid concentration. Our findings indicate that Raman microspectroscopy, a recently developed technique to measure intracellular levels of drugs, is also well suited to obtain quantitative data on carotenoid amounts inside cells.