Abstract

Previously, we demonstrated that temperature-modulated fluorescence tomography (TM-FT) could provide fluorescence images with high quantitative accuracy and the spatial resolution of focused ultrasound. TM-FT is based on scanning the focused ultrasound across the medium to activate temperature-reversible fluorescent nanoprobes (ThermoDots). This technique can resolve small fluorescent targets located several centimeters deep in turbid media with millimeter resolution. Our past studies with this multimodality technique used agar phantoms, which could not represent the true heterogeneous nature of the acoustic and optical properties of biological tissue. In this work, we report the results of the first TM-FT study performed on ex vivo chicken breast tissue. In order to improve the spatial resolution of this technique, diffuse optical tomography is also used to better estimate the optical property maps of the tissue, which is utilized as functional a priori for the TM-FT reconstruction algorithm. These ex vivo results show that TM-FT can accurately recover the concentration and position of a 1.5  mm×5  mm inclusion filled with ThermoDots. Since the inclusion is embedded 2 cm deep in the chicken breast sample, these results demonstrate the great potential of TM-FT for future in vivo small animal imaging.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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