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Opt Express. 2007 Apr 16;15(8):4634-46.

Investigation of the point spread function of surface plasmon-coupled emission microscopy.

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  • 1Computation and Systems Biology, Singapore-MIT Alliance, National University of Singapore, 4 Engineering Drive 3, Singapore 117576, Singapore.


Surface plasmon-coupled emission microscopy (SPCEM) was proposed as a high sensitivity technique that makes use of a thin layer of metal deposited on glass slides to efficiently excite fluorophores and to collect the emission light. However, the theoretical aspect of SPCEM imaging has not been well studied. We propose a model for SPCEM and show, through theoretical analysis and empirical results, that the point spread function of SPCEM is irregular and has an annular-like structure, significantly different from the familiar point spread function of the conventional wide-field microscopy. This result is due to the highly polarized and anisotropic emission caused by the metal layer.

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