X-ray luminescence computed tomography (XLCT) is a hybrid molecular imaging modality that uses high energy x-ray photons to excite nanophosphors (e.g. Europium doped Gadolinium Oxysulfide – GOS: Eu3+) emitting optical photons to be measured by a sensitive detector for image reconstruction. XLCT has potentials to combine both the merits of x-ray imaging (high spatial resolution) and optical imaging (high sensitivity), which makes XLCT an attractive imaging modality to image nanophosphor targets deeply embedded in turbid media. In this study, we have evaluated the sensitivity of XLCT with phantom experiments by scanning targets of different phosphor concentrations at different depths. Cylindrical phantoms embedded with a cylindrical target with varying concentrations of GOS: Eu3+ (27.6 mM, 2.76 mM, 276 μM, and 27.6 μM) were scanned inside our lab made XLCT imaging system for varying scanning depths (6, 11, 16, and 21 mm). We found that XLCT is capable of imaging targets of very low concentrations (27.6 μM or 0.01 mg/mL) at significant depths, such as 21 mm. Our results demonstrate that there is also little variation in the reconstructed target size for different imaging depths for XLCT. We have for the first time, compared the sensitivity of XLCT with that of traditional computed tomography (CT) for phosphor targets. We found that XLCT’s use of x-ray induced photons provides much higher measurement sensitivity and contrast compared to CT which provides image contrast solely based on x-ray attenuation.
Michael C. Lun, Wei Zhang, and Changqing Li, "X-ray luminescence computed tomography: a sensitivity study," Proc. SPIE 10137, Medical Imaging 2017: Biomedical Applications in Molecular, Structural, and Functional Imaging, 1013704 (Presented at SPIE Medical Imaging: February 12, 2017; Published: 13 March 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2254682.
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