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Biomedical Optics

Department 8.3


We develop and investigate optically supported quantitative measurement and imaging methods for medical diagnostics and therapy control, mostly in collaboration with clinical partners. The focus of activities of the working group 8.31 is on optical spectroscopy and imaging for non-invasive quantitative determination of important biomarkers (e.g. hemoglobin concentration, oxygen saturation) in tissue in vivo as well as for the visualization of disease-related molecular changes by means of fluorescence-labeled probes. In addition, microscopic imaging techniques are developed and studied for the characterization and differentiation of single biological cells in flow. In working group 8.32, flow cytometric and microscopic measurement methods for cells as well as molecular biological measurement methods for the detection and quantification of pathogens (e.g. viruses such as HIV and SARS-CoV2, or bacteria) are investigated for metrology in laboratory diagnostics. The aim is, among other things, the development of reference measurement methods as well as the determination of reference measurement values for external quality assurance schemes which are legally required for medical laboratories.


Xenon noble gas atoms can form transient complexes with host molecules in solution. The resulting host-guest systems are held together by non-covalent bonds. They are an example of supramolecular systems. They may thus serve for the analysis of similar chemical or pharmaceutical carrier and delivery systems. Xenon complexation is currently also explored as potential contrast agent in magnetic...

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Histogram of fluorescence seperates positive and negative measurement resultsPCR tests were used already at the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic. SARS-CoV-2 is an RNA virus. However, PCR can only detect DNA. Therefore, RNA is first transcribed into DNA. Next the DNA is specifically amplified. A high viral concentration generates a strong signal. This allows to use a PCR test to detect or exclude an infection by SARS-CoV-2. The analytical sensitivity of PCR tests can vary...

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The Department of Biomedical Optics has started a technology transfer collaboration with NIRx-Medizintechnik GmbH. This involves the development and testing of wearable devices for determining oxygen saturation in the human brain. The measurement method is based on the application of near-infrared light. The devices were extensively characterized at PTB. Reference phantoms developed by PTB with...

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