Abstract

We investigated the propagation of light in biological tissues that have aligned cylindrical microstructures (e.g., muscle, skin, bone, tooth). Because of pronounced anisotropic light scattering by cylindrical structures (e.g., myofibrils and collagen fibers) the spatially resolved reflectance exhibits a directional dependence that is different close to and far from the incident source. We applied Monte Carlo simulations, using the phase function of an infinitely long cylinder, to explain quantitatively the experimental results. These observations have consequences for noninvasive determination of the optical properties of tissue as well as for the diagnosis of early tissue alterations.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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