The evolution of field deployable fNIR spectroscopy from bench to clinical settings

Kurtulus Izzetoglu, Hasan Ayaz, Anna Merzagora, Meltem Izzetoglu, Patricia A. Shewokis, Scott Bunce, Kambiz Pourrezaei, Arye Rosen, Banu Onaral

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Dr. Britton Chance and his colleagues, using picosecond-long laser pulses, spearheaded the development of time-resolved spectroscopy techniques in an effort to obtain quantitative information about the optical characteristics of the tissue. These efforts by Chance and colleagues expedited the translation of near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS)-based techniques into a neuroimaging modality for various cognitive studies. Beginning in the early 2000s, Dr. Britton Chance guided and steered the collaboration with the Optical Brain Imaging team at Drexel University toward the development and application of a field deployable continuous wave functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIR) system as a means to monitor cognitive functions, particularly during attention and working memory tasks as well as for complex tasks such as war games and air traffic control scenarios performed by healthy volunteers under operational conditions. Further, these collaborative efforts led to various clinical applications, including traumatic brain injury, depth of anesthesia monitoring, pediatric pain assessment, and braincomputer interface in neurology. In this paper, we introduce how these collaborative studies have made fNIR an excellent candidate for specified clinical and research applications, including repeated cortical neuroimaging, bedside or home monitoring, the elicitation of a positive effect, and protocols requiring ecological validity. This paper represents a token of our gratitude to Dr. Britton Chance for his influence and leadership. Through this manuscript we show our appreciation by contributing to his commemoration and through our work we will strive to advance the field of optical brain imaging and promote his legacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)239-250
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Innovative Optical Health Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biomedical Engineering


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