The three-dimensional optical transfer function is derived for analyzing the imaging performance in fiber-optical two-photon fluorescence microscopy. Two types of fiber-optical geometry are considered: The first involves a single-mode fiber for delivering a laser beam for illumination, and the second is based on the use of a single-mode fiber coupler for both illumination delivery and signal collection. It is found that in the former case the transverse and axial cutoff spatial frequencies of the three-dimensional optical transfer function are the same as those in conventional two-photon fluorescence microscopy without the use of a pinhole. However, the transverse and axial cutoff spatial frequencies in the latter case are 1.7 times as large as those in the former case. Accordingly, this feature leads to an enhanced optical sectioning effect when a fiber coupler is used, which is consistent with our recent experimental observation.
© 2003 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: June 20, 2002
Revised Manuscript: October 30, 2002
Manuscript Accepted: October 30, 2002
Published: May 1, 2003
Min Gu and Damian Bird, "Three-dimensional optical-transfer-function analysis of fiber-optical two-photon fluorescence microscopy," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 20, 941-947 (2003)