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Document Type



Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor's Name

Wei-Chiang Lin

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Anthony J. McGoron

Third Advisor's Name

Jie Mi

Fourth Advisor's Name

Nikolaos Tsoukias

Fifth Advisor's Name

Yen-Chih Huang


tissue optics, optical diagnosis, fluorescence spectroscopy, diffuse reflectance spectroscopy, myocardial infarction

Date of Defense



Accurately assessing the extent of myocardial tissue injury induced by Myocardial infarction (MI) is critical to the planning and optimization of MI patient management. With this in mind, this study investigated the feasibility of using combined fluorescence and diffuse reflectance spectroscopy to characterize a myocardial infarct at the different stages of its development. An animal study was conducted using twenty male Sprague-Dawley rats with MI. In vivo fluorescence spectra at 337 nm excitation and diffuse reflectance between 400 nm and 900 nm were measured from the heart using a portable fiber-optic spectroscopic system. Spectral acquisition was performed on - (1) the normal heart region; (2) the region immediately surrounding the infarct; and (3) the infarcted region - one, two, three and four weeks into MI development. The spectral data were divided into six subgroups according to the histopathological features associated with various degrees / severities of myocardial tissue injury as well as various stages of myocardial tissue remodeling, post infarction. Various data processing and analysis techniques were employed to recognize the representative spectral features corresponding to various histopathological features associated with myocardial infarction. The identified spectral features were utilized in discriminant analysis to further evaluate their effectiveness in classifying tissue injuries induced by MI. In this study, it was observed that MI induced significant alterations (p < 0.05) in the diffuse reflectance spectra, especially between 450 nm and 600 nm, from myocardial tissue within the infarcted and surrounding regions. In addition, MI induced a significant elevation in fluorescence intensities at 400 and 460 nm from the myocardial tissue from the same regions. The extent of these spectral alterations was related to the duration of the infarction. Using the spectral features identified, an effective tissue injury classification algorithm was developed which produced a satisfactory overall classification result (87.8%). The findings of this research support the concept that optical spectroscopy represents a useful tool to non-invasively determine the in vivo pathophysiological features of a myocardial infarct and its surrounding tissue, thereby providing valuable real-time feedback to surgeons during various surgical interventions for MI.





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