Microbubble dynamics around melanosomes irradiated with microsecond pulses

Jörg Neumann*, Ralf Brinkmann

*Corresponding author for this work


The origin of cell damage due to irradiation of the retina with microsecond laser pulses is most likely the disintegration of retinal pigment epithelial cells, which is caused by the formation of microbubbles around the strongly absorbing melanosomes within the cell. In order to get a more detailed understanding of the laser tissue interaction in the retinal pigment epithelium we irradiated a suspension of porcine melanosomes, which served as a model system, by a frequency doubled Nd:YLF laser emitting at 527nm. We used pulse durations of 500ns and 3.5μs. The formation of microbubbles around isolated melanosomes was imaged directly on a microscopic level by fast flash light photography. Near threshold radiant exposure for bubble formation we found transient bubbles with diameters below 1μm and lifetimes below 500ns. Applying super-threshold irradiation stable bubbles with diameters up to 7μm and lifetimes in the millisecond time regimen were observed. This can be explained by production of stable gas inside the melanosome due to laser heating.

Original languageEnglish
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Pages (from-to)180-185
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 27.06.2002
EventLaser Tissue Interaction XIII: Photochemical, Photothermal and Photomechanical - San Jose, United States
Duration: 20.01.200223.01.2002
Conference number: 59829

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Biomedical Engineering


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