Sub-millimeter resolution 3D optical imaging of living tissue using laminar optical tomography



In-vivo imaging of optical contrast in living tissues can allow measurement of functional parameters such as blood oxygenation and detection of targeted and active fluorescent contrast agents. However, optical imaging must overcome the effects of light scattering, which limit the penetration depth and can affect quantitation and sensitivity. This article focuses on a technique for high-resolution, high-speed depth-resolved optical imaging of superficial living tissues called laminar optical tomography (LOT), which is capable of imaging absorbing and fluorescent contrast in living tissues to depths of 2–3 mm with 100–200 micron resolution. An overview of the advantages and challenges of in-vivo optical imaging is followed by a review of currently available techniques for high-resolution optical imaging of tissues. LOT is then described, including a description of the imaging system design and discussion of data analysis and image reconstruction approaches. Examples of recent applications of LOT are then provided and compared to other existing technologies.