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Front Neuroenergetics. 2010 Jul 14;2. pii: 14. doi: 10.3389/fnene.2010.00014. eCollection 2010.

Brain specificity of diffuse optical imaging: improvements from superficial signal regression and tomography.

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1
Department of Radiology, Washington University in St. Louis, MO USA.

Abstract

Functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is a portable monitor of cerebral hemodynamics with wide clinical potential. However, in fNIRS, the vascular signal from the brain is often obscured by vascular signals present in the scalp and skull. In this paper, we evaluate two methods for improving in vivo data from adult human subjects through the use of high-density diffuse optical tomography (DOT). First, we test whether we can extend superficial regression methods (which utilize the multiple source-detector pair separations) from sparse optode arrays to application with DOT imaging arrays. In order to accomplish this goal, we modify the method to remove physiological artifacts from deeper sampling channels using an average of shallow measurements. Second, DOT provides three-dimensional image reconstructions and should explicitly separate different tissue layers. We test whether DOT's depth-sectioning can completely remove superficial physiological artifacts. Herein, we assess improvements in signal quality and reproducibility due to these methods using a well-characterized visual paradigm and our high-density DOT system. Both approaches remove noise from the data, resulting in cleaner imaging and more consistent hemodynamic responses. Additionally, the two methods act synergistically, with greater improvements when the approaches are used together.

KEYWORDS:

artifact removal; biomedical optics; diffuse optical tomography; image quality; near-infrared spectroscopy; neuroimaging

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