A Wearable Fiber-free Optical Sensor for Continuous Monitoring of Cerebral Blood Flow in Freely Behaving Mice

Xuhui Liu, Daniel A. Irwin, Chong Huang, Yutong Gu, Li Chen, Kevin Donohue, Lei Chen, Guoqiang Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


<italic>Objective</italic>: Wearable technologies for functional brain monitoring in freely behaving subjects can advance our understanding of cognitive processing and adaptive behavior. Existing technologies are lacking in this capability or need procedures that are invasive and&#x002F;or otherwise impede brain assessments during social behavioral conditions, exercise, and sleep. <italic>Methods:</italic> In response a complete system was developed to combine relative cerebral blood flow (rCBF) measurement, O2 and CO2 supplies, and behavior recording for use on conscious, freely behaving mice. An innovative diffuse speckle contrast flowmetry (DSCF) device and associated hardware were miniaturized and optimized for rCBF measurements in small subject applications. The use of this wearable, fiber-free, near-infrared DSCF head-stage&#x002F;probe allowed no craniotomy, minimally invasive probe implantation, and minimal restraint of the awake animal. <italic>Results and Conclusions:</italic> Significant correlations were found between measurements with the new DSCF design and an optical standard. The system successfully detected rCBF responses to CO2-induced hypercapnia in both anesthetized and freely behaving mice. <italic>Significance:</italic> Collecting rCBF and activity information together during natural behaviors provides realistic physiological results and opens the path to exploring their correlations with pathophysiological conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:


  • Biomedical monitoring
  • Cameras
  • cerebral blood flow
  • diffuse speckle contrast
  • freely moving mice
  • Mice
  • Monitoring
  • Optical fiber sensors
  • Optical fibers
  • Probes
  • wearable sensor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


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