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Published October 2012 | Published
Journal Article Open

Video-rate functional photoacoustic microscopy at depths


We report the development of functional photoacoustic microscopy capable of video-rate high-resolution in vivo imaging in deep tissue. A lightweight photoacoustic probe is made of a single-element broadband ultrasound transducer, a compact photoacoustic beam combiner, and a bright-field light delivery system. Focused broadband ultrasound detection provides a 44-μm lateral resolution and a 28-μm axial resolution based on the envelope (a 15-μm axial resolution based on the raw RF signal). Due to the efficient bright-field light delivery, the system can image as deep as 4.8 mm in vivo using low excitation pulse energy (28 μJ per pulse, 0.35  mJ/cm^2 on the skin surface). The photoacoustic probe is mounted on a fast-scanning voice-coil scanner to acquire 40 two-dimensional (2-D) B-scan images per second over a 9-mm range. High-resolution anatomical imaging is demonstrated in the mouse ear and brain. Via fast dual-wavelength switching, oxygen dynamics of mouse cardio-vasculature is imaged in realtime as well.

Additional Information

© 2012 SPIE. Paper 12388 received Jun. 21, 2012; revised manuscript received Sep. 7, 2012; accepted for publication Sep. 10, 2012; published online Oct. 1, 2012. The authors appreciate Prof. James Ballard's help with editing the manuscript. This work was sponsored by NIH grants R01 EB000712, R01 EB008085, R01 CA134539, U54 CA136398, R01 CA157277, and R01 CA159959. Lihong Wang has a financial interest in Endra, Inc., and Microphotoacoustics, Inc., which did not support this work. Konstantin Maslov has a financial interest in Microphotoacoustics, Inc., which did not support this work.

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