We introduce a new method of rotational image acquisition for four-dimensional (4D) optical coherence tomography (OCT) of beating embryonic chick hearts. The rotational axis and the central A-scan of the OCT are identical. An out-of-phase image sequence covering multiple heartbeats is acquired at every angle of an incremental rotation of the deflection mirrors of the OCT system. Image acquisition is accomplished after a rotation of 180◦. Comparison of a displayed live M-mode of the central A-scan with a reference M-mode allows instant detection of translational movements of the embryo. For calculation of 4D data sets, we apply an imagebased retrospective gating algorithm using the phase information of the common central A-scan present in all acquired images. This leads to cylindrical three-dimensional data sets for every time step of the cardiac cycle that can be used for 4D visualization.We demonstrate this approach and provide a video of a beating Hamburger and Hamilton stage 16 embryonic chick heart generated from a 4D OCT data set using rotational image acquisition.
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- In vivo imaging
- Optical coherence tomography
- Cardiovascular development