Ultraweak photon emission phenomena in the visible to near-IR region, originating from biological organisms, are known. This biophoton emission is generated during metabolic processes and constitutes physiological information. We investigated a technique for characterizing the optical radiation field based on photon statistics and correlation analysis to extract information on regulation processes in biochemical reactions and their interactions. We developed the system based on the time-interval measurement of photoelectrons in a photon-counting region and employed data processing with a nonstationary optical field with correction for the correlative properties of the photomultiplier dark current. We analyzed biophoton emission from cellular slime mold (<i>Dictyosterium discoideum</i>) and observed the characteristic variation of this organism’s super-Poisson statistics during the developmental process.
© 2000 Optical Society of America
(030.5260) Coherence and statistical optics : Photon counting
(030.5290) Coherence and statistical optics : Photon statistics
(040.5250) Detectors : Photomultipliers
(170.1420) Medical optics and biotechnology : Biology
(260.1560) Physical optics : Chemiluminescence
Masaki Kobayashi and Humio Inaba, "Photon Statistics and Correlation Analysis of Ultraweak Light Originating from Living Organisms for Extraction of Biological Information," Appl. Opt. 39, 183-192 (2000)