Hemodynamic measurements from individual blood cells in early mammalian embryos with Doppler swept source OCT

Opt Lett. 2009 Apr 1;34(7):986-8. doi: 10.1364/ol.34.000986.


The most common and lethal birth defects affect the cardiovascular (CV) system. The mouse is a superior model for identifying and understanding mammalian CV birth defects, but there is a great need for tools that can detect early and subtle deficiencies in cardiac function in mouse embryos. We combined swept source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT) with live mouse embryo culture protocols to generate structural two-dimensional and three-dimensional imaging and hemodynamic measurements in a live 8.5 day embryo just a few hours after the beginning of a heartbeat. Our data show that individual circulating blood cells can be visualized with structural SS-OCT, and using Doppler SS-OCT the velocity of single moving blood cells were measured during different phases of the heartbeat cycle. These results demonstrate that Doppler SS-OCT is an extremely useful tool for structural and hemodynamic analysis at the earliest stages of mammalian blood circulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Blood Cells / cytology*
  • Blood Flow Velocity*
  • Cardiovascular System / cytology*
  • Embryo Culture Techniques
  • Embryo, Mammalian / blood supply*
  • Hemodynamics
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Laser-Doppler Flowmetry / instrumentation*
  • Laser-Doppler Flowmetry / methods
  • Mice
  • Models, Statistical
  • Time Factors
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / instrumentation*
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / methods