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Phys Med Biol. 2009 Jan 7;54(1):149-60. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/54/1/010. Epub 2008 Dec 10.

Tissue characterization using terahertz pulsed imaging in reflection geometry.

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Department of Electronic Engineering, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.


Terahertz pulsed imaging (TPI) is a non-ionizing and non-destructive imaging technique that has been recently used to study a wide range of biological materials. The severe attenuation of terahertz radiation in samples with high water content means that biological samples need to be very thin if they are to be measured in transmission geometry. To overcome this limitation, samples could be measured in reflection geometry and this is the most feasible way in which TPI could be performed in a clinical setting. In this study, we therefore used TPI in reflection geometry to characterize the terahertz properties of several organ samples freshly harvested from laboratory rats. We observed differences in the measured time domain responses and determined the frequency-dependent optical properties to characterize the samples further. We found statistically significant differences between the tissue types. These results show that TPI has the potential to accurately differentiate between tissue types non-invasively.

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