Fluorescence imaging of intrinsic fluorophores of tissue is a powerful method to assess metabolic changes at the cellular and intracellular levels. At the same time, exogenous phosphorescent probes can be used to accurately measure intravascular tissue oxygenation. Heart failure is the leading cause of death in America. A rat heart can potentially model the human heart to study failures or other abnormalities optically. We report simultaneous fluorescence and phosphorescence measurements performed on a rat heart. We have used two different optical systems to acquire fluorescence signals of flavoprotein and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide—the two intrinsic fluorophores of mitochondria—and the phosphorescence signal of an intravascular oxygen probe to extract intracellular and intravascular metabolism loads, respectively.
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