Infrared (IR) spectroscopic imaging is potentially useful for digital histopathology as it provides spatially resolved molecular absorption spectra, which can subsequently yield useful information by powerful artificial intelligence methods. A typical analysis pipeline in using IR imaging data for chemical pathology often involves iterative processes of segmentation, evaluation, and analysis that necessitate rapid data exploration. Here, we present a fast, reliable, and intuitive method based on a phasor representation of spectra and discuss its unique applicability for IR imaging data. We simulate different features extant in IR spectra and discuss their influence on the phasor waveforms; similarly, we undertake IR image analysis in the transform space to understand spectral similarity and variance. We demonstrate the potential of phasor analysis for biomedical tissue imaging using a variety of samples, using fresh frozen surgical prostate resections and formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded breast cancer tissue microarray samples as model systems that span common histopathology practice. To demonstrate further generalizability of this approach, we apply the method to data from different experimental conditions─including standard (5.5 μm × 5.5 μm pixel size) and high-definition (1.1 μm × 1.1 μm pixel size) Fourier transform IR (FTIR) spectroscopic imaging using transmission and transflection modes. Quantitative segmentation results from our approach are compared to previous studies, showing good agreement and quick visualization. The presented method is rapid, easy to use, and highly capable of deciphering compositional differences, presenting a convenient tool for exploratory analysis of IR imaging data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11365-11374
Number of pages10
JournalAnalytical Chemistry
Issue number30
StatePublished - Aug 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry


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