We report the experimental implementation of optical diffraction tomography for quantitative 3D mapping of refractive index in live biological cells. Using a heterodyne Mach-Zehnder interferometer, we record complex field images of light transmitted through a sample with varying directions of illumination. To quantitatively reconstruct the 3D map of complex refractive index in live cells, we apply optical diffraction tomography based on the Rytov approximation. In this way, the effect of diffraction is taken into account in the reconstruction process and diffraction-free high resolution 3D images are obtained throughout the entire sample volume. The quantitative refractive index map can potentially serve as an intrinsic assay to provide the molecular concentrations without the addition of exogenous agents and also to provide a method for studying the light scattering properties of single cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics