1. Congratulations to Yuankai Tao a Winner of the Santec & OCT News Student Travel Grant

    Congratulations to Yuankai Tao a Winner of the Santec & OCT News Student Travel Grant

    Santec Corporation and OCT News are pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Optical Coherence Tomography Student Travel Grant award. This year there was a tie for first place and two submissions were awarded. Congratulations to Yuankai (Kenny) Tao a very recent PhD graduate from the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Duke University and now a postdoc in the Laser Medicine and Medical Imaging Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the USA. This work resulted from a collaboration between the laboratories of Professor Joseph Izatt and Cynthia Toth of the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Ophthalmology at Duke University.  The project was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health and by a software donation from Bioptigen which provided the operating software for the SDOCT instrument.  Below is a description of Dr. Tao's Work.


    Surgical visualization has changed drastically since its inception, incorporating larger, more advanced optics toward increasing illumination and field-of-view (FOV). However, the limiting factor in vitreoretinal surgery remains the ability to distinguish between tissues with subtle contrast, and to judge the location of an object relative to other retinal substructures. Spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SDOCT) has demonstrated strong clinical success in retinal imaging, enabling high-resolution, motion-artifact-free cross-sectional imaging and rapid accumulation of volumetric macular datasets.


    Preoperative diagnostic imaging using current generation SDOCT systems have demonstrated the ability to provide volumetric datasets of pathologic areas that are otherwise barely visible. While OCT imaging has been considered for various non-ophthalmic intrasurgical applications, it is uniquely suited for vitreoretinal surgery where multiple layers of the retinal structure are readily accessible, and where high resolution cross-sectional viewing would immediately have an impact on surgery as it is performed today. This improvement in surgical visualization would impact the treatment of a wide range of ocular diseases including diabetic retinopathy with membranes in the macula, macular holes, epiretinal membranes, and retinal detachments. Real-time cross-sectional OCT imaging would also provide critical information relevant to the location and deformation of structures that may shift during surgery.


    We have recently demonstrated opto-mechanical designs for an intraoperative microscope-mounted OCT system (MMOCT) and preliminary in vivo human retinal imaging using this system in a test subject [5]. Here, we demonstrate imaging of surgical manipulations in excised porcine retina using the MMOCT. High-resolution cross-sectional OCT images provides both the location of surgical instruments relative to anatomical structures and layers in the retina, as well as information regarding tissue manipulations such as peroration, compression, traction, and lifting. We also developed a spatial compounding method that uses a combination of sparse raster scanning patterns and B-scan averaging to provide time-lapsed images of tissue-instrument interactions. This allows for live imaging of surgical procedures and could potentially allow for real-time feedback and image-guided intraoperative procedures using MMOCT.



    1. S. R. Virata, J. A. Kylstra, and H. T. Singh, Retina (Philadelphia, Pa 19, 287-290 (1999).

    2. E. Garcia-Valenzuela, A. Abdelsalam, D. Eliott, M. Pons, R. Iezzi, J. E. Puklin, M. L. McDermott, and G. W. Abrams, Am J Ophthalmol 136, 1062-1066 (2003).

    3. N. A. Nassif, B. Cense, B. H. Park, M. C. Pierce, S. H. Yun, B. E. Bouma, G. J. Tearney, T. C. Chen, and J. F. de Boer, Optics Express 12, 10 (2004).

    4. M. Wojtkowski, V. J. Srinivasan, T. H. Ko, J. G. Fujimoto, A. Kowalczyk, and J. S. Duker, Optics Express 12, 2404-2422 (2004).

    5. Y. K. Tao, J. P. Ehlers, C. A. Toth, and J. A. Izatt, Opt Lett 35, 3315-3317 (2010).


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