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Optical property measurements of turbid media in a small-volume cuvette with frequency-domain photon migration.


A frequency-domain photon migration (FDPM) technique is developed for quantitative measurement of the absorption and reduced scattering coefficients of highly turbid samples in a small-volume (0.45-ml) reflective cuvette. We present both an analytical model for the FDPM cuvette and its experimental verification, using calibrated phantoms and suspensions of living cells. FDPM model fits to experimental data demonstrate that the reduced scattering (mu(s)?) and absorption (mu(a)) coefficients can be derived with accuracies of 5-10% and 10-15%, respectively. Changing the cuvette wall reflectivity alters the frequency-dependent behavior of photon density waves (PDWs). For highly reflective wall boundaries (R(eff) >/= 90-95%), PDW confinement leads to substantial enhancement in both amplitude and phase compared with identical samples in infinite media. Results from experiments on microsphere suspensions are compared with predictions from Mie theory to assess the potential of this method to interpret scattering properties in terms of scatterer size and density. Optical property measurements of biological cell suspensions are reported, and the possibility of optically monitoring cell physiology in a carefully controlled environment is demonstrated.

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