PREPRINT (not yet peer-reviewed)
Fourier synthesis optical diffraction tomography for kilohertz rate volumetric imaging

Brown P, Meneses L, Monakhova E, Pintuff A, Kruithoff R, Galati DF, Wadhwa N, Shepherd DP, arXiv (2023).


Many biological and soft matter processes occur at high speeds in complex 3D environments, and developing imaging techniques capable of elucidating their dynamics is an outstanding experimental challenge. Here, we introduce Fourier Synthesis Optical Diffraction Tomography (FS-ODT), a novel approach for high-speed quantitative phase imaging capable of recording the 3D refractive index at kilohertz rates. FS-ODT introduces new pattern generation and inverse computational strategies that multiplex tens of illumination angles in a single tomogram, dramatically increasing the volumetric imaging rate. We validate FS-ODT performance by imaging samples of known composition and accurately recovering the refractive index for increasing pattern complexity. We further demonstrate the capabilities of FS-ODT for probing complex systems by studying the hindered diffusion of colloids in solution and the motility of single-cellular bacterial swimmers. We believe that FS-ODT is a promising approach for unlocking challenging imaging regimes in biophysics and soft matter that have been little explored, including understanding the physical interactions of colloids and microswimmers with their viscous 3D environment and the interplay between these stimuli and the molecular response of biological systems.