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Opt Express. 2009 Jun 22;17(13):10489-98.

A real-time photoacoustic tomography system for small animals.

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Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA.


A real-time 512-element photoacoustic tomography system for small animal imaging using a ring ultrasound array has been developed. The system, based upon a 5 MHz transducer array formed along a 50 mm circular aperture, achieves sub-200 micron lateral resolution over a 2 cm disk-shaped region. Corresponding elevation resolutions of 0.6 to 2.5 mm over the central volume enable depth-resolved 3D tomographic imaging with linear translation. Using 8:1 electronic multiplexing, imaging at up to 8 frame/sec is demonstrated for both dynamic phantoms and in vivo mouse and brain samples. The real-time, full 2D tomographic capability of the system paves the way for functional photoacoustic tomographic imaging studies in small animals with sub-second time frame.

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