The technology is a software/hardware combination designed to enhance sampling rate for frequency domain fluorescence lifetime imaging. Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) is a technique that uses signals emitted from fluorescent samples to construct images of those samples in near real time. An advantage to FLIM is its ability to image large fields of view, which makes it an attractive option for dynamical measurements of live biological tissues. The higher sampling rate available using this technology will allow for more information to be gleaned from biological samples, which may have a fluorescence band up to 1 GHz, advancing tissue imaging.
Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) is a technique used to create near real-time images by exploiting the exponential decay properties of fluorescent samples. In the frequency domain, FLIM involves applying a pulsed source of light to a sample, in order to excite fluorescence, and measuring the phase difference between the emitted fluorescence and the original pulsed light. Additionally, changes in the amplitude of the emitted fluorescence are measured relative to the pulsed source. Information gleaned from these measurements can then be used to construct a digital image representation of the sample. The technique has broad imaging applications, but a subfield with great potential for medical impact is the characterization of biological tissues using their auto-fluorescence properties.
The fluorescence band in tissues is up to 1 GHz, however, the frequency response of previous FLIM instrumentation only reaches 320 MHz, leading to information loss. A technology that improves the frequency response detection would represent a significant advance in the field.
Key aspects of this technology:
Fluorescence measurements, biological tissue imaging
§ Higher sampling rate (640 MHz)
§ Works with any FPGA chip
§ Inexpensive (electronics are < $100)
§ Use of a USB 3.0 data transmission chip
Working prototype for fluorescence measurements
Concept stage for tissue applications
Frequency Domain, Digital Frequency Domain, Tissue Spectroscopy, Fluorescence Lifetime