Lifetime-based oxygen imaging is useful in many biological applications but instrumentation can be stationary, expensive, and complex. Herein, we present a portable, cost effective, simple alternative with high spatiotemporal resolution that uses a complementary metal oxide silicon (CMOS) camera to measure oxygen sensitive lifetimes on the millisecond scale. We demonstrate its compatibility with difluoroboron β-diketonate poly(lactic acid) (BF2bdkPLA) polymers which are nontoxic and exhibit long-lived oxygen sensitive phosphorescence. Spatially resolved lifetimes of four BF2bdkPLA variants are measured using nonlinear least squares (NLS) and rapid lifetime determination (RLD) both of which are shown to be accurate and precise. Real-time imaging in a dynamic environment is demonstrated by determining lifetime pixel-wise. The setup costs less than $5000, easily fits into a backpack, and can operate on battery power alone. This versatility combined with the inherent utility of lifetime measurements make this system a useful tool for a wide variety of oxygen sensing applications. This study serves as an important foundation for the development of dual mode real time lifetime plus ratiometric imaging with bright, long lifetime difluoroboron β-diketonate probes.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank the National Institutes of Health (R01 CA167250) and the UVA Cancer Center (P30 CA44579) for their support of this work. JND also thanks the Department of Chemistry for support.
© The Royal Society of Chemistry 2016.