Journal of Biomedical OpticsSwept-source optical coherence tomography powered by a 1.3-μm vertical cavity surface emitting laser enables 2.3-mm-deep brain imaging in mice in vivo
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We report noninvasive, in vivo optical imaging deep within a mouse brain by swept-source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT), enabled by a 1.3-μm vertical cavity surface emitting laser (VCSEL). VCSEL SS-OCT offers a constant signal sensitivity of 105 dB throughout an entire depth of 4.25 mm in air, ensuring an extended usable imaging depth range of more than 2 mm in turbid biological tissue. Using this approach, we show deep brain imaging in mice with an open-skull cranial window preparation, revealing intact mouse brain anatomy from the superficial cerebral cortex to the deep hippocampus. VCSEL SS-OCT would be applicable to small animal studies for the investigation of deep tissue compartments in living brains where diseases such as dementia and tumor can take their toll.