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Neurophotonics

Label-free photoacoustic tomography of whole mouse brain structures ex vivo
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Paper Abstract

Capitalizing on endogenous hemoglobin contrast, photoacoustic-computed tomography (PACT), a deep-tissue high-resolution imaging modality, has drawn increasing interest in neuroimaging. However, most existing studies are limited to functional imaging on the cortical surface and the deep brain structural imaging capability of PACT has never been demonstrated. Here, we explicitly studied the limiting factors of deep brain PACT imaging. We found that the skull distorted the acoustic signal and blood suppressed the structural contrast from other chromophores. When the two effects are mitigated, PACT can potentially provide high-resolution label-free imaging of structures in the entire mouse brain. With 100-μm in-plane resolution, we can clearly identify major structures of the brain, which complements magnetic resonance microscopy for imaging small-animal brain structures. Spectral PACT studies indicate that structural contrasts mainly originate from cytochrome distribution and that the presence of lipid sharpens the image contrast; brain histology results provide further validation. The feasibility of imaging the structure of the brain in vivo is also discussed. Our results demonstrate that PACT is a promising modality for both structural and functional brain imaging.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 July 2016
PDF: 8 pages
Neurophoton. 3(3) 035001 doi: 10.1117/1.NPh.3.3.035001
Published in: Neurophotonics Volume 3, Issue 3
Show Author Affiliations
Lei Li, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (United States)
Jun Xia, Univ. at Buffalo (United States)
Guo Li, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (United States)
Alejandro Garcia-Uribe, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (United States)
Qiwei Sheng, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (United States)
Mark A. Anastasio, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (United States)
Lihong V. Wang, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (United States)


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