Research database

PHAST - Photonics for Healthcare: multiscAle cancer diagnosiS and Therapy

49 months (2020 - 2024)
Principal investigator(s):
Project type:
UE-funded research - H2020 - Excellent Science - Marie Curie
Funding body:
Project identification number:


The European Training Network PHAST (Photonics for Healthcare: multiscAle cancer diagnosiS and Therapy) provides excellent, highly-skilled education and training in the vibrant field of Biophotonics for 15 Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) in a strong multidisciplinary PhD programme. PHAST addresses some relevant unmet needs of the medical community in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer one of the leading causes of death worldwide to significantly improve the quality of life for European society. The main scientific goal of PHAST is to develop multiscale advanced photonic technologies for the diagnosis of cancer in vitro and in vivo and the monitoring of therapy for personalized medicine, through its four specific objectives: 1. In-vitro diagnosis as point-of-care approach through optical spectroscopy combined with innovative sampling techniques. 2. Tissue diagnostics and functional monitoring by optical fibre-based biopsy and diffuse optical spectroscopy. 3. Microscale cancer monitoring by multimodal optical imaging of tumour borders during surgery. 4. Macroscale therapy monitoring by diffuse optical spectroscopy, multifunctional optical fibre sensors, autofluorescence, and hyperspectral imaging. The multi-scale level approach employed by PHAST will allow early cancer detection from molecular disease markers in body-liquids up to live organs. In specific cases these techniques will be validated in the clinic thanks to close collaboration with medical institutions. The ESRs will be trained to all the technologies through hands-on laboratory platforms, thematic workshops and courses to build solid careers as biophotonics professionals in both academic and non-academic sectors. This will be possible thanks to the multidisciplinary environment created by the PHAST consortium, composed of research institutions, 2 hospitals and 8 industries, among them specialized small companies as well as global players in the field such as Horiba, Philips and Zeiss.

People involved





Total cost: € 3,939,917.76
Total contribution: € 3,939,917.76
PoliTo total cost: € 261,499.68
PoliTo contribution: € 261,499.68