Tumors are heterogeneous tissues and MSOT imaging can be utilized to understand intra-tumoral differences. For example, the cross-sectional heterogeneity of oxygenated and deoxygenated hemoglobin can be visualized as well as the biodistribution of fluorescent dyes in tumor tissue. This can be performed in real time, allowing insights on intra-tumoral accumulation and circulation times of optical agents.

Such spatial and temporal resolution are unique to MSOT imaging. Conventional epi-illumination fluorescence imaging may lead to inaccurate conclusions about the underlying tumor biology and physiology.

MSOT allows for significantly more accurate and detailed observations of cancer parameters throughout the entire tumor. Therefore, it can shift the utilization of optical imaging from deriving conclusions based on superficial observations to accurately visualizing endogenous and exogenous contrast throughout whole tumors.

multispectrally resolved fluorescent agent signals

A: MSOT image obtained 6 hours post injection shows multispectrally resolved fluorescent agent signals (green overlay, arrow indicates tumor).
B: Multispectrally resolved oxyhemoglobin (red) and deoxyhemoglobin (blue) distribution within the tumor. Inset is a photograph of the corresponding cryosection.
C: Fluorescence image of corresponding cryosection was obtained for validation. Arrows indicate regions of deoxygenated hemoglobin in the tumor core. Note that injected probe is not resolved in the areas of the tumor with reduced oxygenation.

Optical Imaging of Cancer Heterogeneity with MSOT

Herzog E, Taruttis A, Beziere N, Lutich AA, Razansky D, Ntziachristos V, Optical Imaging of Cancer Heterogeneity with MSOT, Radiology. 2012 May;263(2):461-8.

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