Present understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms of asthma has been severely limited by the lack of an imaging modality capable of assessing airway conditions of asthma patients in vivo. Of particular interest is the role that airway smooth muscle (ASM) plays in the development of asthma and asthma related symptoms. We have developed novel techniques that we applied to Polarization Sensitive OCT (PS-OCT) in order to assess ASM, and validated our results with a substantial number of histological matches. In this work we employ our system in the study of ASM distributions in both asthmatic and non-asthmatic airways with data obtained in vivo from human volunteers. By isolating the ASM and performing volumetric analysis we obtain a variety of informative metrics such as ASM thickness and band width, and compare these quantities between subject types. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the degree of birefringence of the ASM can be associated with contractility, allowing us to estimate pressure exerted by ASM during contraction. We apply this technique to in vivo datasets from human volunteers as well.
David C. Adams, Lida P. Hariri M.D., Alyssa J. Miller, Martin Villiger, Jasmin Holz, Margit V. Szabari, Brett E. Bouma, Andrew D. Luster, Benjamin D. Medoff, and Melissa J. Suter, "Studying airway smooth muscle in vivo with PS-OCT
(Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 9697, Optical Coherence Tomography and Coherence Domain Optical Methods in Biomedicine XX, 96971H (Presented at SPIE BiOS: February 17, 2016; Published: 26 April 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2214772.4848635702001.
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