Polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography (PS-OCT) enables noninvasive, high-resolution imaging of tissue polarization properties. In the anterior segments of human eyes, PS-OCT allows the visualization of birefringent and depolarizing structures. We present the use of PS-OCT for imaging the murine anterior eye. Using a spectral domain PS-OCT setup operating in the 840-nm regime, we performed in vivo volumetric imaging in anesthetized C57BL/6 mice. The polarization properties of murine anterior eye structures largely replicated those known from human PS-OCT imagery, suggesting that the mouse eye may also serve as a model system under polarization contrast. However, dissimilarities were found in the depolarizing structure of the iris which, as we confirmed in postmortem histological sections, were caused by anatomical differences between both species. In addition to the imaging of tissues in the anterior chamber and the iridocorneal angle, we demonstrate longitudinal PS-OCT imaging of the murine anterior segment during mydriasis as well as birefringence imaging of corneal pathology in an aged mouse.
We implemented a wide field-of-view visible-light optical coherence microscope (OCM) for investigating ex-vivo brain tissue of patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and of a mouse model of AD. A submicrometer axial resolution in tissue was achieved using a broad visible light spectrum. The use of various objective lenses enabled reaching micrometer transversal resolution and the acquisition of images of microscopic brain features, such as cell structures, vessels, and white matter tracts. Amyloid-beta plaques in the range of 10 to 70 μm were visualized. Large field-of-view images of young and old mouse brain sections were imaged using an automated x − y − z stage. The plaque load was characterized, revealing an age-related increase. Human brain tissue affected by cerebral amyloid angiopathy was investigated and hyperscattering structures resembling amyloid beta accumulations in the vessel walls were identified. All results were in good agreement with histology. A comparison of plaque features in both human and mouse brain tissue was performed, revealing an increase in plaque load and a decrease in reflectivity for mouse as compared with human brain tissue. Based on the promising outcome of our experiments, visible light OCM might be a powerful tool for investigating microscopic features in ex-vivo brain tissue.
Polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography (PS-OCT) provides intrinsic contrast related to tissue microstructure. In the past, PS-OCT has been successfully used for imaging the anterior eye of humans in a variety of pathologic conditions. Here, we present PS-OCT imaging of the anterior eye in mice. Spectral domain PS-OCT centered at a wavelength of 840 nm was performed in anaesthetized laboratory mice. Three dimensional data sets were acquired at a 70 kHz A-line rate. PS-OCT images displaying phase retardation, birefringent axis orientation and degree of polarization uniformity (DOPU) were computed. Similar to human anterior segments, depolarization was observed in the corneal stroma and in structures containing melanin pigments such as the iris and the ciliary body. Birefringence was detected in the sclera close to the limbus. Aside from depolarizing foci observed within structures affected by cataract, the lens appeared mostly polarization preserving. Increased birefringence was observed in a scarred cornea. Given the similarity of the polarization characteristics in the murine eye and the human eye, PS-OCT lends itself as an ideal candidate for non-invasive imaging in preclinical studies in mouse models of anterior segment pathology.