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Combined system of fluorescence diffuse optical tomography and microcomputed tomography for small animal imaging
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We developed a dual-modality system that combines fluorescence diffuse optical tomography (fDOT) and flat panel detector-based microcomputed tomography (micro-CT) to simultaneously reveal molecular and structural information in small animals. In fDOT, a 748 nm diode laser was used as an excitation source, while a cooled charge coupled devicecamera was adopted to collect transmission fluorescence. In micro-CT, a flat panel detector based on amorphous silicon, with active area of , and a microfocus x-ray tube were used. The fDOT system was mounted orthogonally to the micro-CT and the projection images were acquired without rotation of the sample, which is different from the method used for micro-CT alone. Both the finite element method and the algebraic reconstruction technique were used to reconstructimages from the fDOT. Phantom data showed that the resolution of the fDOT system was about 3 mm at an imaging depth of 7 mm. Quantitative error was no more than 5% and imaging sensitivity for -dioctadecyl-3,3,-etramethylindotricarbocyanine iodide bis-oleate (DiR-BOA) was estimated to be higher than 100 nM at a depth of 7 mm. Calculations of the phantom’s center of mass showed that the location accuracy of fDOT was about 0.7 mm. We applied a Feldkamp algorithm to reconstruct the micro-CT image. By measuring the presampled modulation transfer function with a tungsten thread, we estimated that the micro-CT has a resolution of when the field of view was 6.5 cm. Our results indicate the uniformity of the transaxial micro-CT image and the contrast-to-noise ratio was measured as 1.95 for a radiation dose of 1 cGy. A non-image-based method was employed for merging images from the two imaging modalities. A nude mouse with DiR-BOA, imagedex vivo, was used to validate the feasibility of the dual-modality system.
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