A neurovascular high-frequency optical coherence tomography system enables in situ cerebrovascular volumetric microscopy

Nat Commun. 2020 Jul 31;11(1):3851. doi: 10.1038/s41467-020-17702-7.


Intravascular imaging has emerged as a valuable tool for the treatment of coronary and peripheral artery disease; however, no solution is available for safe and reliable use in the tortuous vascular anatomy of the brain. Endovascular treatment of stroke is delivered under image guidance with insufficient resolution to adequately assess underlying arterial pathology and therapeutic devices. High-resolution imaging, enabling surgeons to visualize cerebral arteries' microstructure and micron-level features of neurovascular devices, would have a profound impact in the research, diagnosis, and treatment of cerebrovascular diseases. Here, we present a neurovascular high-frequency optical coherence tomography (HF-OCT) system, including an imaging console and an endoscopic probe designed to rapidly acquire volumetric microscopy data at a resolution approaching 10 microns in tortuous cerebrovascular anatomies. Using a combination of in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo models, the feasibility of HF-OCT for cerebrovascular imaging was demonstrated.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Angiography / instrumentation
  • Angiography / methods
  • Animals
  • Basilar Artery / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cadaver
  • Carotid Arteries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Arteries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation / physiology
  • Humans
  • Microscopy / instrumentation
  • Microscopy / methods*
  • Swine
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / instrumentation
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / methods*
  • Vertebral Artery / diagnostic imaging*