Fluorescence signals depend on the intensity of the exciting light, the absorption properties of the constituent molecules, and the efficiency with which the absorbed photons are converted to fluorescence emission. The optical features and appearance of vitiligo have been explained primarily on the basis of reduced epidermal pigmentation, which results in abnormal white patches on the skin. The objective of this study is to explore the fluorescence properties of vitiligo and its adjacent normal skin using fluorescence excitation-emission matrix (EEM) spectroscopy. Thirty five (35) volunteers with vitiligo were acquired using a double-grating spectrofluorometer with excitation and emission wavelengths of 260-450 nm and 300-700 nm respectively. As expected, the most pronounced difference between the spectra obtained from vitiligo lesions compared to normally pigmented skin was that the overall fluorescence was much higher in vitiligo; these differences increased at shorter wavelengths, thus matching the characteristic spectral absorption of epidermal melanin. When comparing the fluorescence spectra from vitiligo to normal skin we detected three distinct spectral bands centered at 280nm, 310nm, and 335nm. The 280nm band may possibly be related to inflammation, whereas the 335 nm band may arise from collagen or keratin cross links. The source of the 310 nm band is uncertain; it is interesting to note its proximity to the 311 nm UV lamps used for vitiligo phototherapy. These differences are accounted for not only by changes in epidermal pigment content, but also by other optically active cutaneous biomolecules.
Jianhua Zhao, Vincent Richer, Mohammed Al Jasser, Soodabeh Zandi, Nikiforos Kollias, Sunil Kalia, Haishan Zeng, and Harvey Lui, "Fluorescence excitation-emission matrix spectroscopy of vitiligo skin in vivo (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 9689, Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics XII, 968911 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: February 15, 2016; Published: 27 April 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2214210.4828028242001.
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