Dry coupling for whole-body small-animal photoacoustic computed tomography
We have enhanced photoacoustic computed tomography with dry acoustic coupling that eliminates water immersion anxiety and wrinkling of the animal and facilitates incorporating complementary modalities and procedures. The dry acoustic coupler is made of a tubular elastic membrane enclosed by a closed transparent water tank. The tubular membrane ensures water-free contact with the animal, and the closed water tank allows pressurization for animal stabilization. The dry coupler was tested using a whole-body small-animal ring-shaped photoacoustic computed tomography system. Dry coupling was found to provide image quality comparable to that of conventional water coupling.
Additional Information© 2017 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Paper 160544SSR received Aug. 10, 2016; accepted for publication Feb. 8, 2017; published online Feb. 23, 2017. The authors appreciate the close reading of the manuscript by Prof. James Ballard. We also thank Chin Ting, Junjie Yao, Jinyang Liang, and Yong Zhou for helpful discussions. This work was sponsored by the National Institutes of Health Grants DP1 EB016986 (NIH Director's Pioneer Award), R01 CA186567 (NIH Director's Transformative Research Award), and R01 EB016963.
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