Frequency-domain photon migration (FDPM) is a widely used technique for measuring the optical properties (i.e., absorption, μa, and reduced scattering, μs′, coefficients) of turbid samples. Typically, FDPM data analysis is performed with models based on a photon diffusion equation; however, analytical solutions are difficult to obtain for many realistic geometries. Here, we describe the use of models based instead on representative samples and multivariate calibration (chemometrics).
FDPM data at seven wavelengths (ranging from 674 to 956 nm) and multiple modulation frequencies (ranging from 50 to 600 MHz) were gathered from turbid samples containing mixtures of three absorbing dyes. Values for μa and μs′ were extracted from the FDPM data in different ways, first with the diffusion theory and then with the chemometric technique of partial least squares. Dye concentrations were determined from the FDPM data by three methods, first by least-squares fits to the diffusion results and then by two chemometric approaches. The accuracy of the chemometric predictions was comparable or superior for all three dyes. Our results indicate that chemometrics can recover optical properties and dye concentrations from the frequency-dependent behavior of photon density waves, without the need for diffusion-based models. Future applications to more complicated geometries, lower-scattering samples, and simpler FDPM instrumentation are discussed.
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