An international team of researchers has developed a computer model for assessing tissue transmission spectra, a method that shows promise for identifying the best conditions for optical diagnostics and laser surgery. Led by Igor Meglinski of the University of Otago (Dunedin, New Zealand) and Vladislav Yakovlev of Texas A&M University (College Station, TX), the team also believes their model can play a vital role in the deployment of facial recognition security systems.
In-vivooptical imaging probes are promising for rapid, inexpensive, and noninvasive medical screening and diagnostics for a wide range of diseases. To that end, the team's advances in optical spectroscopic characterization are also critical for the success of laser surgery, where it is essential to know exactly the laser fluence delivered to a specific organ and the optimal laser excitation conditions for maximum tissue probing depth.
To build and verify the computer model, Georgi Petrov of the BME Department at Texas A&M Universityâusing a CCD camera (Andor Technology's iDus Deep Depletion CCD camera)âmeasured transmission rates for different parts of the human body in the 500 to 950 nm spectral range. Because the research team required high sensitivity in the visible and near-infrared (NIR) regions, a deep-depletion CCD satisfied their requirements by avoiding all etaloning effects that would affect their measurements, explains Petrov. It also offered high quantum efficiency in the NIR, a high dynamic range, and good detector linearity, he adds.
"The work of Meglinski and Yakovlev, in discovering a way to model the functional properties of human skin and other tissues, opens up new ways to identify optimal conditions for optical diagnostics. Similarly, modeling optical variations associated with physiological changes, such as blood oxygenation, holds out the hope of novel, noninvasive techniques to monitor patients 24/7, especially those in intensive care," says Antoine Varagnat, product specialist at Andor Technology.
For more information on the research team's work, which appears in Biomedical Optics Express, please visit www.opticsinfobase.org/boe/abstract.cfm?URI=boe-3-9-2154.
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