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Journal of Biomedical Optics • Open Access

Optical coherence tomography for embryonic imaging: a review

Paper Abstract

Embryogenesis is a highly complex and dynamic process, and its visualization is crucial for understanding basic physiological processes during development and for identifying and assessing possible defects, malformations, and diseases. While traditional imaging modalities, such as ultrasound biomicroscopy, micro-magnetic resonance imaging, and micro-computed tomography, have long been adapted for embryonic imaging, these techniques generally have limitations in their speed, spatial resolution, and contrast to capture processes such as cardiodynamics during embryogenesis. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a noninvasive imaging modality with micrometer-scale spatial resolution and imaging depth up to a few millimeters in tissue. OCT has bridged the gap between ultrahigh resolution imaging techniques with limited imaging depth like confocal microscopy and modalities, such as ultrasound sonography, which have deeper penetration but poorer spatial resolution. Moreover, the noninvasive nature of OCT has enabled live imaging of embryos without any external contrast agents. We review how OCT has been utilized to study developing embryos and also discuss advances in techniques used in conjunction with OCT to understand embryonic development.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 May 2016
PDF: 22 pages
J. Biomed. Opt. 21(5) 050902 doi: 10.1117/1.JBO.21.5.050902
Published in: Journal of Biomedical Optics Volume 21, Issue 5
Show Author Affiliations
Raksha Raghunathan, Univ. of Houston (United States)
Manmohan Singh, Univ. of Houston (United States)
Mary E. Dickinson, Baylor College of Medicine (United States)
Kirill V. Larin, Univ. of Houston (United States)
Baylor College of Medicine (United States)


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