Researchers have found a way to use a laser-scanning mini-camera to map the inner working of blood vessels and spot the early signs of stroke risk.
The proof-of-concept demonstrations, conducted using carotid arteries that were harvested during autopsies, are described today in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering.
The technique takes advantage of an instrument known as a scanning fiber endoscope, or SFE, which was invented by Eric Seibel, a mechanical engineering research professor at the University of Washington.
Seibel designed the endoscope to be used in early cancer detection, but medical researchers at the University of Michigan repurposed the device to look for signs of atherosclerosis inside the harvested arteries. The researchers also conducted experiments using live rabbits.