Instrumentation considerations in spectral imaging for tissue demarcation: Comparing three methods of spectral resolution
Multiple methodologies exist to implement spectral imaging for tissue demarcation and disease diagnosis. In this paper, benchtop acousto-optic tunable filter (AOTF), liquid-crystal tunable filter (LCTF) and Fourier interferometric spectral imaging systems were quantitatively compared in terms of imaging speed of soft tissue autofluorescence. Optical throughput, image signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), and collagen autofluorescence imaging in chicken breast were assessed. Within this comparison, the Fourier system possessed the largest optical throughput (∼50%) relative to the tunable-filter imaging systems; however, its throughput advantage failed to correlate to improved image SNR over the LCTF system. Further, while the autofluorescence imaging capability of the Fourier system exceeded that of the LCTF system for comparable total image integration times, the LCTF is capable of producing equivalent autofluorescence SNR with superior SNR when interrogations at only a few wavelengths are required and the random access filter tuning of the LCTF can be exploited. Therefore, the simple, rugged design and random-access filter-tuning capability of LCTF-based spectral imaging makes it best-suited for clinical development of soft tissue autofluorescence imaging.
Gebhart, SC; Stokes, DL; Vo-Dinh, T; Mahadevan-Jansen, A
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