Scientists develop new method for enhancing OCT resolution

New technique applies AI to increase the resolution of optical coherence tomography down to a single micrometre in all directions

close up eye
Researchers from Duke University in the US have developed a method for increasing the resolution of optical coherence tomography (OCT).

The technique, named optical coherence refraction tomography (OCRT), is described in Nature Photonics.  

OCRT combines OCT images taken from multiple angles to extend the depth resolution to the lateral dimension.

An algorithm was then used to reduce distortion within the combined images by accurately modelling how the light is bent as it passes through the sample.

During proof-of-concept experiments, researchers rotated tissue samples beneath an OCT scanner.

The algorithm created a map of each sample’s refractive index, increasing the resolution of the scan by more than 300% while reducing the background noise in the final image.

The scientists envisage that rather than rotating tissue beneath the scanner, a scanning probe could rotate the angle of the beam on the tissue surface.

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