Baby brain scanner photo

 Photos Uncategorized 2007 11 15 Babybig

My pal and IFTF colleague Jake Dunagan spotted this amazing image in an older post on the excellent Cocktail Party Physics. The doll is wearing a diffuse optical tomography (DOT) rig, an emerging technology used to scan an infant's brain using light. From Cocktail Party Physics:

Light passes out of one fiber optic cable, diffuses through the tissue, and is received by another cable. Yes, light does diffuse through tissue, as anyone who has ever held a flashlight up to his hand can attest. According to Joseph Culver, an assistant professor of radiology at WUSTL, "The flashlight's white light becomes visibly reddened because there's a window in the near-IR region of the spectrum where human tissue absorbs relatively little of the light." Anyway, based on this diffusion data, the machine's computer creates a 3D tomographic image based on whether the hemoglobin in the blood is oxygenated or deoxygenated to determine brain activity.

"From the minds of babes"