Photoacoustics can image spreading depolarization deep in gyrencephalic brain.
Spreading depolarization (SD) is a self-propagating wave of near-complete neuronal depolarization that is abundant in a wide range of neurological conditions, including stroke. SD was only recently documented in humans and is now considered a therapeutic target for brain injury, but the mechanisms related to SD in complex brains are not well understood. While there are numerous approaches to interventional imaging of SD on the exposed brain surface, measuring SD deep in brain is so far only possible with low spatiotemporal resolution and poor contrast. Here, we show that photoacoustic imaging enables the study of SD and its hemodynamics deep in the gyrencephalic brain with high spatiotemporal resolution. As rapid neuronal depolarization causes tissue hypoxia, we achieve this by continuously estimating blood oxygenation with an intraoperative hybrid photoacoustic and ultrasonic (PAUS) imaging system. Due to its high resolution, promising imaging depth and high contrast, this novel approach to SD imaging can yield new insights into SD and thereby lead to advances in stroke, and brain injury research.
Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1901.02786
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