Time-Resolved Fluorescence Imaging Without Lifetime Fitting

Tech ID: 27548 / UC Case 2010-142-0


UCLA investigators have developed a novel method to obtain time-resolved fluorescence imaging (TRFI) without the need to extract a fluorescence lifetime. Compared to conventional TRFI, this novel method is reliable, simple, time-saving and can dramatically improve biomedical applications of TRFI.


Time-resolved fluorescence imaging is an effective tool to study complex biological samples. In medicine, the distribution in space of any fluorescent marker can be exploited for diagnostic purposes. Images using this technique are acquired by obtaining the lifetime pattern of the sample. This is complicated due to the fact that lifetime-extraction to obtain fluorescence images may not be reliable.Fluorescence decay fitting and lifetime estimation methods have resolution limits, especially when it comes to multiple fluorophores. A simple and accurate method to obtain fluorescence image without lifetime-extraction is a desirable option for time-resolved fluorescence imaging.


Researchers at UCLA have developed a method to obtain time-resolved fluorescence imaging (TRFI) without the need of lifetime fitting. The method first utilizes the lifetime differences of fluorophores to normalize images sampled at multiple fluorescence decay time points. The method then applies division and intensification on images sampled when all the fluorophores are still fluorescing.


  • Cancer detection in a broad range of imaging procedures
  • Cosmetic application for determination of collagen and elastin ratio
  • Identification of unknown substances in medical forensics


  • Provides rapid determination of the relative lifetime within an image
  • Simpler and more reliable

State Of Development

The capability of both methods has been tested by using Fluorescein and Rhodamine-B as samples. Both methods show the ability to distinguish fluorophores from each other. In addition, the methods can avoid the effect of non-uniformity of the fluorescence intensity.

Patent Status

Country Type Number Dated Case
Germany Issued Patent 60 2013 045 578.3 10/24/2018 2010-142
France Issued Patent 2820398 10/24/2018 2010-142
United Kingdom Issued Patent 2820398 10/24/2018 2010-142
Japan Issued Patent 6389763 08/24/2018 2010-142
United States Of America Published Application 20150053871 02/26/2015 2010-142


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  • Grundfest, Warren S.

Other Information


TRFI, fluorescence, imaging, method, algorithm, technique, medical, fluorophore, lifetime fitting, detection

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