Navigation Links
Texas A&M research contributes to improved ultrasound imaging
Date:3/5/2013

Ultrasound technology could soon experience a significant upgrade that would enable it to produce high-quality, high-resolution images, thanks to the development of a new key material by a team of researchers that includes a professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M University.

The material, which converts ultrasound waves into optical signals that can be used to produce an image, is the result of a collaborative effort by Texas A&M Professor Vladislav Yakovlev and researchers from King's College London, The Queen's University of Belfast and the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Their findings appear in the current issue of "Advanced Materials."

The engineered material, known as a "metamaterial," offers significant advantages over conventional ultrasound technology, which generates images by converting ultrasound waves into electrical signals, Yakovlev explains. Although that technology has advanced throughout the years think of the improvement in sonogram images it is still largely constrained by bandwidth and sensitivity limitations, he says. These limitations, he adds, have been the chief obstacle when it comes to producing high-quality images that can serve as powerful diagnostic tools.

The metamaterial developed by Yakovlev and his colleagues is not subject to those limitations, primarily because it converts ultrasound waves into optical signals rather than electrical ones. The optical processing of the signal does not limit the bandwidth or sensitivity of the transducer (converter) and that's important for producing highly detailed images, Yakovlev says.

"A high bandwidth allows you to sample the change of distance of the acoustic waves with a high precision," Yakovlev notes. "This translates into an image that shows greater detail. Greater sensitivity enables you to see deeper in tissue, suggesting we have the potential to generate images that might have previously not been possible with conventional ultrasound technology."

In other words, this new material may enable ultrasound devices to see what they haven't yet been able to see. That advancement could significantly bolster a technology that is employed in a variety of biomedical applications. In addition to being used for visualizing fetuses during routine and emergency care, ultrasound is used for diagnostic purposes in incidents of trauma and even as a means of breaking up tissue and accelerating the effects of drugs therapies.

While Yakovlev's research is not yet ready for integration into ultrasound technology, it has successfully demonstrated how conventional technology can be substantially improved by using the newly engineering material created by his team, he notes.

The material, he notes, consists of golden nanorods embedded in a polymer known as polypyrrole. An optical signal is sent into this material where it interacts with and is altered by incoming ultrasound waves before passing through the material. A detection device would then read the altered optical signal, analyzing the changes in its optical properties to process a higher resolution image, Yakovlev explains.

"We developed a material that would enable optical signal processing of ultrasound," Yakovlev says. "Nothing like this material exists in nature so we engineered a material that would provide the properties we needed. It has greater sensitivity and broader bandwidth. We can go from 0-150 MHz without sacrificing the sensitivity. Current technology typically experiences a substantial decline in sensitivity around 50 MHz.

"This metamaterial can efficiently convert an acoustic wave into an optical signal without limiting the bandwidth of the transducer, and its potential biomedical applications represent the first practical implementation of this metamaterial."


'/>"/>

Contact: Ryan Garcia
979-847-5833
Texas A&M University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. Manipulating way bacteria talk could have practical applications, Texas A&M profs say
2. Life Technologies Plant in Austin, Texas Named One of IndustryWeeks Top Ten Best Plants for 2011
3. CuraLase Expands with New Franchise in Texas
4. CEM President and CEO Delivers Commencement Address at the 2012 University of Texas at Austin Chemistry and Biochemistry Department Graduation
5. Mining cleanup benefits from Texas A&M expertise
6. United States Rocket Academy Welcomes XCOR Aerospace to Texas
7. Worlds smallest semiconductor laser created by University of Texas scientists
8. NSBRI Renews Space Life Sciences Graduate Programs at MIT, Texas A&M
9. Texas Medical Center, the largest concentration of medical research, educational and healthcare organizations in the world, announces the first Houston Stem Cell Summit to highlight the latest stem cell research and commercialization efforts
10. Why Texas is #1 in Business: Local BioTech Company Expands
11. Texas Teacher May Be Among First Lone Star Astronauts
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/9/2016)... PA (PRWEB) , ... February 09, 2016 , ... With ... the 2016 Wharton Health Care Business Conference will bring together over 500 top healthcare ... for an industry in transformation. The conference, organized by MBA students of the University ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... Tunnell Consulting, Inc. announced that Frédéric Lefebvre has ... focus on acquiring new accounts and work closely with existing Tunnell clients throughout Europe ... to our European clients more than 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... , Feb. 9, 2016 This market ... the current and future prospects of the market in ... report include companies engaged in the manufacture of microbiology ... executive summary with a market snapshot providing the overall ... of this report. This section also provides the overall ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - BIOREM Inc. (TSXV: ... the top ten finalists for clean technology companies in the ... the top 10 companies listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, ... & gas, clean technology & life sciences, diversified ... equal weighting given to return on investment, market cap growth, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:1/25/2016)... Jan. 25, 2016  Glencoe Software, the world-leading supplier ... publication industries, will provide the data management solution OMERO ... Photo ... Phenotypic analysis measures the characteristics ... allowing comparisons between states such as health and disease, ...
(Date:1/20/2016)... 20, 2016   MedNet Solutions , an innovative ... of clinical research, is pleased to announce the attainment ... are the result of the company,s laser focus on ... , it,s comprehensive, easy-to-use and highly affordable cloud-based ... Key MedNet growth achievements in 2015 include: ...
(Date:1/13/2016)... January 13, 2016 ... addition of the  "India Biometrics Authentication ... Forecast (2015-2020)"  report to their ... has announced the addition of the  ... - Estimation & Forecast (2015-2020)" ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):