Reflection-mode in vivo photoacoustic microscopy with subwavelength lateral resolution

Wei Song, Wei Zheng, Ruimin Liu, Riqiang Lin, Hongtao Huang, Xiaojing Gong, Shousheng Yang, Rui Zhang, Liang Song
Biomedical Optics Express 2014 December 1, 5 (12): 4235-41
We developed a reflection-mode subwavelength-resolution photoacoustic microscopy system capable of imaging optical absorption contrast in vivo. The simultaneous high-resolution and reflection-mode imaging capacity of the system was enabled by delicately configuring a miniature high-frequency ultrasonic transducer tightly under a water-immersion objective with numerical aperture of 1.0. At 532-nm laser illumination, the lateral resolution of the system was measured to be ~320 nm. With this system, subcellular structures of red blood cells and B16 melanoma cells were resolved ex vivo; microvessels, including individual capillaries, in a mouse ear were clearly imaged label-freely in vivo, using the intrinsic optical absorption from hemoglobin. The current study suggests that, the optical-absorption contrast, subwavelength resolution, and reflection-mode ability of the developed photoacoustic microscopy may empower a wide range of biomedical studies for visualizing cellular and/or subcellular structures.

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