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Sensors 2017, 17(12), 2800; https://doi.org/10.3390/s17122800

Recent Advances in Fluorescence Lifetime Analytical Microsystems: Contact Optics and CMOS Time-Resolved Electronics

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong 999077, China
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Received: 2 November 2017 / Revised: 30 November 2017 / Accepted: 1 December 2017 / Published: 4 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Sensors for Bioimaging)
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Abstract

Fluorescence spectroscopy has become a prominent research tool with wide applications in medical diagnostics and bio-imaging. However, the realization of combined high-performance, portable, and low-cost spectroscopic sensors still remains a challenge, which has limited the technique to the laboratories. A fluorescence lifetime measurement seeks to obtain the characteristic lifetime from the fluorescence decay profile. Time-correlated single photon counting (TCSPC) and time-gated techniques are two key variations of time-resolved measurements. However, commercial time-resolved analysis systems typically contain complex optics and discrete electronic components, which lead to bulkiness and a high cost. These two limitations can be significantly mitigated using contact sensing and complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) implementation. Contact sensing simplifies the optics, whereas CMOS technology enables on-chip, arrayed detection and signal processing, significantly reducing size and power consumption. This paper examines recent advances in contact sensing and CMOS time-resolved circuits for the realization of fully integrated fluorescence lifetime measurement microsystems. The high level of performance from recently reported prototypes suggests that the CMOS-based contact sensing microsystems are emerging as sound technologies for application-specific, low-cost, and portable time-resolved diagnostic devices. View Full-Text
Keywords: contact sensing; CMOS; fluorescence spectroscopy; time-resolved; time-gated; TCSPC; microsystems; lab-on-a-chip contact sensing; CMOS; fluorescence spectroscopy; time-resolved; time-gated; TCSPC; microsystems; lab-on-a-chip
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Wei, L.; Yan, W.; Ho, D. Recent Advances in Fluorescence Lifetime Analytical Microsystems: Contact Optics and CMOS Time-Resolved Electronics. Sensors 2017, 17, 2800.

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