A new optical contrast agent has been developed by exposing dye-loaded microbubbles to a rapidly-cooled thermal treatment to homogenize the dye distribution across the surface. Ultrasound causes these microbubbles to oscillate in size which changes the self-quenching efficiency of the dye molecules creating a "blinking" signal. We demonstrate for the first time that these microbubbles can reproducibly generate second, third, and even fourth harmonic fluorescence intensity modulations, in addition to the fundamental frequency of the driving ultrasound. Detecting these harmonic signals could produce a higher signal-to-noise ratio for fluorescence imaging in medical applications by allowing fundamental frequency interference and artifacts to be filtered out.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics