Functional imaging of embryonic development using noninvasive volumetric optoacoustic tomography
24 January 2022 • 4:00 PM - 4:15 PM PST | Room 211 (Level 2 South)
Fetal development is an orchestrated and complex process. The fetal heart is the first essential organ developing during organogenesis. An impaired fetal heart function correlates to functional cardiac anomalies and heart defects in adulthood. Periodic monitoring of cardiac functional characteristics during embryonic development can prevent future pathological cases in adulthood. Therefore, noninvasive visualization of dynamic functional cardiac events at the early stages of development is essential for monitoring heart health or disease progression. Functional imaging of murine embryonic cardiac models can significantly contribute to our understanding of mammalian heart development. Due to the small size of the embryonic heart, a high-resolution imaging platform is required to provide reliable volumetric analyses. Moreover, evaluating cardiovascular system development and cardiac function impairment necessitates a real-time noninvasive tool to image embryonic vascular and heart anatomy in mouse models. Optoacoustic (OA) imaging provides an excellent optical contrast along with high spatial resolution. It has demonstrated an exclusive potential for noninvasive deep tissue visualization. In this study, we used volumetric OA imaging to visualize the embryonic heart development on gestational days (GD) 14.5 to 17.5. The average heart size was quantified for each of the embryonic stages. Single-wavelength OA imaging provided a temporal resolution of 25 volumes per second. The embryonic cardiac dynamics were quantified using the temporal profile of the time-lapse (4-D) OA data at different locations of the embryonic heart. The average heart rate of embryos was calculated for each embryonic stage.
Univ. of Houston (United States)