Flexible Fiber-Optic Scanning Multiphoton or Harmonic Miniature Imaging Probe
Introduction Endoscopes are increasingly involved in performing common surgical procedures and in diagnosing cancer and other medical conditions. New technologies can demonstrate significant cost savings by moving these procedures from an inpatient to an outpatient setting. Technology description Researchers at the UW have developed a new miniature, flexible, fiber-optic scanning probe for real-time multiphoton fluorescence or other non-linear (such as second or higher harmonic generation) imaging. Two-photon fluorescence (TPE) imaging is a powerful imaging modality with unique characteristics which can provide information complementary to that from other biological imaging technologies. Fast twodimensional beam scanning is achieved by resonating a cantilever using a piezoelectric actuator. Excitation light is delivered and nonlinear signal is collected through an optical fiber. This fiber maintains the high excitation efficiency and improves on the nonlinear signal collection efficiency of conventional single-mode fibers. Business opportunity According to the American Cancer Society, cancers of the colon and rectum alone result in nearly 57,000 deaths each year. The smaller size and improved visualization of this probe will enable improved endoscopic applications for clinicians to diagnose cancers much earlier, thereby saving lives through early intervention and treatment. Stage of development This concept has been demonstrated by the construction and operation of a flexible fiber-optic probe with an outer diameter of 2.4 mm for real time two-photon fluorescence imaging. Intellectual property position This technology is available for licensing. The UW has applied for patent protection on this technology.
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