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Biomedical Optics & Medical Imaging

Lihong Wang Hot Topics presentation: Photoacoustic Tomography -- Ultrasonically Beating Optical Diffusion and Diffraction

Presented at SPIE Photonics West 2014

4 March 2014, SPIE Newsroom. DOI: 10.1117/2.3201403.15

Lihong Wang, Washington Univ. in St. Louis (USA)A decade of research has pushed photoacoustic computed tomography to the forefront of molecular-level imaging, notes SPIE Fellow Lihong Wang (Washington University, St. Louis) in his plenary talk, "Photoacoustic Tomography: Ultrasonically Beating Optical Diffusion and Diffraction."

Modern optical microscopy has resolution and diffraction limitations. But noninvasive functional photoacoustic computed tomography has overcome this limit, offering deep penetration with optical contrast and ultrasonic resolution of 1 cm depth or more -- up to 7 cm of penetration in some cases, such as evaluating sentinel lymph nodes for breast cancer staging. This opens up applications in whole body imaging, brain function, oxygen saturation, label-free cell analysis, and noninvasive cancer biopsies.

Wang earned his PhD degree at Rice University, under the tutelage of Robert Curl, Richard Smalley, and Frank Tittel. He currently holds the Gene K. Beare Distinguished Professorship of Biomedical Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis (USA).

His book entitled Biomedical Optics: Principles and Imaging, one of the first textbooks in the field, received the Joseph W. Goodman Book Writing Award. He also coauthored a book on polarization and edited the first book on photoacoustic tomography. Wang has published more than 300 peer-reviewed journal articles and delivered over 330 keynote, plenary or invited talks.

He is the editor-in-chief of the SPIE Journal of Biomedical Optics.