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Published September 2009 | Published
Journal Article Open

Evans blue dye-enhanced capillary-resolution photoacoustic microscopy in vivo


Complete and continuous imaging of microvascular networks is crucial for a wide variety of biomedical applications. Photoacoustic tomography can provide high resolution microvascular imaging using hemoglobin within red blood cells (RBCs) as an endogenic contrast agent. However, intermittent RBC flow in capillaries results in discontinuous and fragmentary capillary images. To overcome this problem, we use Evans blue (EB) dye as a contrast agent for in vivo photoacoustic imaging. EB has strong optical absorption and distributes uniformly in the blood stream by chemically binding to albumin. With the help of EB, complete and continuous microvascular networks—especially capillaries—are imaged. The diffusion dynamics of EB leaving the blood stream and the clearance dynamics of the EB-albumin complex are also quantitatively investigated.

Additional Information

© 2009 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. Paper 09184R received May 9, 2009; revised manuscript received Aug. 28, 2009; accepted for publication Sep. 2, 2009; published online Oct. 26, 2009. This research is supported by the National Institutes of Health grants NIH R01 EB000712, R01 NS46214, R01 EB008085, and U54 CA136398. Author Wang has a financial interest in Endra, Incorporated, which, however, did not support this work.

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