Collagen content as a risk factor in breast cancer? A pilot clinical study

Antonio Pifferi, Giovanna Quarto, Francesca Abbate, Nicola Balestreri, Simona Menna, Enrico Cassano, Rinaldo Cubeddu, Paola Taroni

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


A retrospective pilot clinical study on time domain multi-wavelength (635 to 1060 nm) optical mammography was exploited to assess collagen as a breast-cancer risk factor on a total of 109 subjects (53 healthy and 56 with malignant lesions). An increased cancer occurrence is observed on the 15% subset of patients with higher age-matched collagen content. Further, a similar clustering based on the percentage breast density leads to a different set of patients, possibly indicating collagen as a new independent breast cancer risk factor. If confirmed statistically and on larger numbers, these results could have huge impact on personalized diagnostics, health care systems, as well as on basic research.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISBN (Print)9781628417036
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventDiffuse Optical Imaging V - Munich, Germany
Duration: Jun 23 2015Jun 25 2015


OtherDiffuse Optical Imaging V


  • breast cancer
  • collagen
  • risk assessment
  • time-resolved diffuse optical imaging
  • Tissue diagnostics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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