Optical Review

, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 161–164

A Method for Measuring the Three-Dimensional Refractive-Index Distribution of Single Cells Using Proximal Two-Beam Optical Tweezers and a Phase-Shifting Mach—Zehnder Interferometer


  • Toshiki Yasokawa
    • Faculty of EngineeringKagawa University
  • Ichirou Ishimaru
    • Faculty of EngineeringKagawa University
  • Masahiro Kondo
    • Faculty of EngineeringKagawa University
  • Shigeki Kuriyama
    • Faculty of MedicineKagawa University
  • Tsutomu Masaki
    • Faculty of MedicineKagawa University
  • Kaoru Takegawa
    • Faculty of AgricultureKagawa University
  • Naotaka Tanaka
    • Faculty of AgricultureKagawa University

DOI: 10.1007/s10043-007-0161-7

Cite this article as:
Yasokawa, T., Ishimaru, I., Kondo, M. et al. OPT REV (2007) 14: 161. doi:10.1007/s10043-007-0161-7


This paper describes a method for measuring the three-dimensional (3D) refractive-index distribution in a single cell. The method can be used to observe the distribution of cell components without fluorescence staining. The two-dimensional optical path length distributions from multiple directions are obtained by non-contact rotation of the cell. These optical path lengths are converted into the line integrals of the refractive index, and the 3D refractive-index distribution is reconstructed by means of computed tomography. The refractive-index distribution in a breast cancer cell can be measured using a phase-shifting Mach—Zehnder interferometer in conjunction with proximal two-beam optical tweezers.

Key words

cellrefractive indexthree-dimensional imagingcomputed tomographyrotationoptical tweezerslight pressurephase shift interferometerMach—Zehnder interferometer
Download to read the full article text

Copyright information

© The Optical Society of Japan 2007