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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 20, Iss. 15 — Jul. 16, 2012
  • pp: 16381–16393
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Optimal laser scan path for localizing a fluorescent particle in two or three dimensions

Gregg M. Gallatin and Andrew J. Berglund  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 20, Issue 15, pp. 16381-16393 (2012)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.20.016381


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Abstract

Localizing a fluorescent particle by scanning a focused laser beam in its vicinity and analyzing the detected photon stream provides real-time information for a modern class of feedback control systems for particle tracking and trapping. We show for the full range of standard merit functions based on the Fisher information matrix (1) that the optimal path coincides with the positions of maximum slope of the square root of the beam intensity rather than with the intensity itself, (2) that this condition matches that derived from the theory describing the optimal design of experiments and (3) that in one dimension it is equivalent to maximizing the signal to noise ratio. The optimal path for a Gaussian beam scanned in two or three dimensions is presented along with the Cramér-Rao bound, which gives the ultimate localization accuracy that can be achieved by analyzing the detected photon stream. In two dimensions the optimum path is independent of the chosen merit function but this is not the case in three dimensions. Also, we show that whereas the optimum path for a Gaussian beam in two dimensions can be chosen to be continuous, it cannot be continuous in three dimensions.

© 2012 OSA

1. Introduction

Fig. 1 Schematic diagram of a laser-scanning particle localization experiment. A Gaussian beam is scanned along a time-dependent (continuous or discrete) path rL(t) and a modulated stream of photons is detected. The optimal design problem is to determine which scan path encodes maximal information about a particles location in the detected photon stream.

Specifically we find that for a Gaussian beam in two dimensions (2D) the fundamental bounds on the localization accuracy are
σx2+σy2w022Nph
(1)
where σk is the standard deviation in position measured along k ∈ {x,y,z}, w0 is the focused Gaussian beam waist [30

30. A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

] and Nph the (average) number of photons collected during the scan time. Note that Eq. (1) is identical to the standard image-based result when a Gaussian point-spread function is assumed [1

1. R. Thompson, D. Larson, and W. Webb, “Precise nanometer localization analysis for individual fluorescent probes,” Biophys. J. 82, 2775–2783 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

, 2

2. R. Ober, S. Ram, and E. Ward, “Localization accuracy in single-molecule microscopy,” Biophys. J. 86, 1185–1200 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

], demonstrating the equivalent information content of a diffraction-limited image and the photon stream from an appropriately scanned diffraction-limited excitation beam.

For a Gaussian beam in three dimensions (3D) we find that for one particular choice of optimization function
σx2+σy2+σz2w02Nph(0.5+4.92w0λ+11.10w02λ2).
(2)
where λ is is the wavelength. Making the following Gaussian approximation to the focused Airy diffraction pattern, w0 ≈ 0.4λ/NA, where NA = sin[θmax] with θmax being the maximum angle the light illuminating the sample makes with respect to the z axis, the three-dimensional localization accuracy becomes
σx2+σy2+σz2λ2Nph2NA(0.08+0.31NA+0.28NA2).
(3)

As stated above, these limits apply to scanned non-imaging type systems such as those described in [10

10. H. Cang, C. Shan Xu, and H. Yang, “Progress in single-molecule tracking spectroscopy,” Chem. Phys. Lett. 457, 285–291 (2008). [CrossRef]

,13

13. A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Tracking-FCS: Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy of individual particles,” Opt. Express 13, 8069–8082 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

,20

20. V. Levi, Q. Ruan, and E. Gratton, “3-D particle tracking in a two-photon microscope. Application to the study of molecular dynamics in cells,” Biophys. J. 88, 2919–2928 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

,22

22. K. McHale, A. J. Berglund, and H. Mabuchi, “Quantum dot photon statistics measured by three-dimensional particle tracking,” Nano Lett. 7, 3535–3539 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

]. The one- and two-dimensional Cramer-Rao bounds for imaging systems where the point spread function, assumed to be Gaussian, generated by a fluorescing particle or molecule is projected onto a detector array were derived many years ago by Winnick [31

31. K. A. Winnick, “Cramer-Rao lower bounds on the performance of charge-coupled-device optical position estimators,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 3, 1809–1815 (1986). [CrossRef]

]. There is no result equivalent to Eq. (2) for image-based three-dimensional localization systems, such as those described in [32

32. H. Kao and A. Verkman, “Tracking of single fluorescent particles in three dimensions: use of cylindrical optics to encode particle position,” Biophys. J. 67, 1291–1300 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

35

35. M. D. McMahon, A. J. Berglund, P. Carmichael, J. J. McClelland, and J. A. Liddle, “3D Particle trajectories observed by orthogonal tracking microscopy,” ACS Nano 3, 609–614 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

]. For imaging systems there is of course no trajectory to optimize but the approach used here to determine optimality and derive the Cramer-Rao bound, i.e., the Fisher information, can (and should) be evaluated for these system and the result compared to the bound given above.

The remainder of the paper is devoted to a derivation and discussion of these results. We specify the problem in terms of the Fisher information matrix, give global optimality conditions, and identify scan paths for the familiar Gaussian beam profiles in two- and three-dimensions. In Appendix A we justify the global optimality condition and in Appendix B we derive the linearized maximum likelihood estimator based on the detected photon stream and foreknowledge of the beam shape (gradients and curvatures of the intensity profile), which can be applied in experimental hardware for real-time localization.

2. Theory of optimal design of experments

Consider a laser beam with a position dependent intensity distribution I(r) where r = (r1, r2, r3) = (x, y, z). When the beam intensity is shifted to position rL and a fluorescent particle, is located at position r, the intensity at the particle position is I(rrL) and so the (average) rate at which fluorescent photons are generated is given by ξI(rrL) where ξ is the fluorescence cross-section (area) of the particle. Letting Γ = ξI with I in units of (incident photons)/(area×time) it follows that Γ has units of (fluorescent photons)/time. (Note: Although it is convenient to think of rL as the position of peak intensity or as the centroid of the beam, this is not necessary. The solution to the optimization problem will automatically take whatever position definition is used into account.) Now suppose the beam is scanned over a time-dependent path rL(t) for a time period τ. Our task is to determine which scan path encodes the most information about the fluorescent particles position r in the detected fluorescent photon arrival times; that is, which path enables the best unbiased estimate of r?

Fluorescently generated photons obey a Poisson distribution, i.e., over a time interval Δt for which rL (t) is approximately constant, the probability for detecting n photons when the particle is at position r is given by pn (t) Δt = (Γ(rrL(t))Δt)n/n!exp[−Γ(rrL(t))Δt]. The probability of counting n photons is proportional to Δtn and hence in the limit as Δt becomes extremely small, the probablity of counting more than one photon in time interval t − Δt/2 to t + Δt/2 effectively vanishes. The probability of counting no photons in the same interval is exp[−Γ(rrL(t))Δt]. It follows from this that the probability of counting 1 photon in the time intervals tk − Δt/2 to tk + Δt/2 for k = 1, 2, ⋯K and t1 < t2 < ⋯ < tK and no photons in any time interval between t = 0 and τ = NΔt is given by p1 (t1) Δt p1 (t2) Δtp1 (tK) Δt exp [i=0N1Γ(rrL((i+1/2)Δt))Δt]. Hence over a finite time τ = NΔt the statistical description of the measurement process is given by the the probability of observing K photon arrival times tk
p(t1,,tK|r)=1K!k=1KΓ(rrL(tk))exp[0τdtΓ(rrL(t))]
(4)
Here the arrival times tk are taken to be unordered by which we mean they are not required to obey t1 < t2 < ⋯ < tK The factor 1/K! accounts for the switch from ordered to unordered. The product over k is understood to be unity for K = 0 and we have replaced i=0N1ΔtΓ(rrL((i+1/2)Δt)) with 0τdtΓ(rrL(t)). The information about the position r of a particle in D dimensions contained in a scan of the laser position rL(t) is quantified by the associated D × D Fisher information matrix [36

36. S. Zacks, The Theory of Statistical Inference (John Wiley & Sons, 1971).

], F which for p(t1, ...,tk|r) given above has j,k elements given by
[F]jkFjk=K=00τdt1dtKp(t1,,tK|r)(jln[p(t1,tK|x)])(kln[p(t1,,tK|r)])
(5)
where j/∂rj. The Cramér-Rao bound is the statement that the best unbiased estimator of r has a covariance matrix given by V = F−1 [36

36. S. Zacks, The Theory of Statistical Inference (John Wiley & Sons, 1971).

]. Thus, we seek the scan path rL(t) that maximizes F and correspondingly minimizes the covariance V. For one-dimensional estimation, this is a straightforward scalar maximization task, but in higher dimensions we must choose a scalar quantity that characterizes the “size” ϕ [F] of the matrix F. (Below we show that for the 1D case, maximizing F maximizes the signal to noise ratio. In higher dimensions there is more than one signal and choosing ϕ [F] is equivalent to choosing what function of these signals is to be maximized relative to the noise ) Two common choices for quantifying the size of F are the determinant ϕ0 [F] = det [F]1/d and the trace of its inverse ϕ−1 [F] = dTr [F−1]−1, which in turn bound the determinant and trace of the covariance matrix V. The trace of the covariance matrix, and hence ϕ−1 [F], is particularly important for our case since it is proportional to the localization accuracy (e.g. for D = 3, Tr[V]=σx2+σy2+σz2). The functions ϕ0 and ϕ−1 are only two examples of the more general matrix information function ϕp used in [37

37. F. Pukelsheim, Optimal design of experiments (Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, 2006). [CrossRef]

], and defined for all p ≠ 0 by
ϕp[F]=(1dTr[Fp])1/p=(1dTr[FFFptimes])1/p
(6)
where “·” indicates matrix multiplication. These provide a sensible measure of the information content for all p ≤ 1 [37

37. F. Pukelsheim, Optimal design of experiments (Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, 2006). [CrossRef]

]. It is important to note that, except in special cases of high symmetry, the optimal scan path maximizing ϕp [F] depends on the choice of p as we will show explicitly below for a Gaussian beam in three dimensions.

For any pair of fluorophore coordinates xj and xk, a straightforward computation of F using the above definition yields
Fjk=0τdt1Γ(rrL(t))(jΓ(rrL(t)))(kΓ(rrL(t)))=40Tdt(jΓ(rrL(t)))(kΓ(rrL(t)))
(7)
Using Γ(r)=ξI(r)=ξa(r) with a(r) the modulus of the field amplitude we can define
g=2Γ(rrL(t))τ=2ξτa(rrL(t))
where ∇ is the gradient, i.e., ∇i = i. Treating g as a column vector and indicating the transpose with a superscript T,
F=1τ0τdtggT.
If the beam is moved in N discrete steps, dwelling at each position rL(n) for a time Δtn, we can define a vector gn for each laser position and write the Fisher information matrix simply a
F=n=1NcngngnT,cn=Δtn/τ=4ξn=1NΔtna(rrL(n)))a(rrL(n)))T
(8)
This is the same Fisher information matrix obtained in a classical linear regression model where the unknown particle position r is projected onto a set of regression vectors gn with corresponding weights cn, with observations corrupted by zero-mean measurement errors of unit magnitude. In this representation, the length of a regression vector determines the precision of a measurement along that direction. The optimal experimental design problem is to choose a set of N vectors gn and corresponding weights cn - or equivalently, a set of N laser positions rL(n) and dwell times Δtn - that maximizes the information matrix F relative to the criterion ϕp [F].

The theory of optimal experimental design provides a very general and extensive analysis of the solution to this type of problem [37

37. F. Pukelsheim, Optimal design of experiments (Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, 2006). [CrossRef]

]. For the ϕp optimality criteria defined above an experimental design with associated Fisher matrix F* is ϕp-optimal if and only if
gTF*p1gTr[F*p]
(9)
for all possible regression vectors g; in this case all possible scan paths, with equality being achieved only for vectors g that are part of an optimal scan path. (For a Gaussian beam in 3D this is shown explicitly below in Section 3.2, see in particular Fig 2. We provide a justification for this form of the optimality condition in Appendix A.)

Fig. 2 Plot of f (r) as defined in Eq. (14). The scan path given by Eqs. (13a)(13c) are proved to be optimal by observing that f (r) is less than1 for all other values of r/w0 or z/zR. Note that because the two optimal points, i.e., the peaks in the graph in Fig. 2, are separated by a valley (f < 1) there is no smoothly varying continuous path in 3D that is optimal for a Gaussian beam. This is in contrast to the 2D case with a Gaussian beam where all the points on the circle r=w0/2 have f = 1 and hence a continuous path can be used if desired. [26].

Substituting for g, we can also write that a laser scan path is ϕp-optimal for any finite p ≤ 1 if and only if
(a(r))TF*p1(a(r))14ξτTr[F*p]
(10)
for all r; again, equality is achieved only for r values that lie on an optimal scan path. Any laser scan path can be tested for optimality by computing the information matrix F and testing for optimality using this criterion. Unfortunately, although it is reasonably easy to apply, it is not at all obvious how this process yields an optimum scan path. So in order to gain insight into the solution we will first solve the optimization problem by the more conventional approach of using the calculus of variations. This will not only specify the optimum scan path in a obvious way, it will also provide significant insight into the solution including indicating how to alter the intensity distribution Γ to improve the tracking accuracy. We will then show that for the Gaussian beam this yields precisely same result that is found using Eq. (10)

3. Solution via the calculus of variations

F is a functional of the laser scan trajectory rL (t) and so the optimum trajectory with respect to ϕp [F] defined in Eq. (6) is the one for which the change in ϕp [F] vanishes to first order in δrL (t) when rL (t) → rL (t) + δrL (t). Of course this condition only gives an extremum of ϕp [F] and we must separately determine that a given solution maximizes ϕp [F]. Carrying out the variation and setting the result to zero yields
0=(1dTr[Fp])1/p1[Fp1]kj(ka(rrL(t)))(ija(rrL(t)))
(11)
with repeated indices, j, k,... summed over the appropriate range and we have used that fact that F is symmetric..

In 1 dimension (1D) F is a non-negative scalar, i.e., F = F and assuming it does not vanish Eq. (11) reduces to
0=(xa(xxL(t)))(x2a(xxL(t)))
for all p which shows that ϕp [F] is maximized at positions xL (t) where x2 a (xxL(t)) = 0 with |∂xa (xxL(t))| ≠ 0. But x2 a (xxL(t)) = 0 is simply the condition that |∂xa (xxL(t))| is, neglecting inflection points, a maximum. Interestingly this does not correspond to the maximum slope of the intensity itself. Thus we can improve the localization accuracy by maximizing the absolute slope beam amplitude and if there are multiple positions where x2 a (xxL(t)) = 0 then the global optimum is achieved by using the one with the largest value of |xa (xxL (t))|. Under the assumption that during the scan time the particle position x is essentially constant it follows that xL (t) can also be held constant. For a Gaussian beam in 1D [30

30. A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

], a(x)=a0exp[x2/w02] and we have x2 a (xxL) = 0 for xL=x±w0/2 with both solutions having the same value of |xa|. ϕp [F] is therefore a maximum for F=F*=8ξτa02/(ew02)=8Nph/(ew02).where Nph=ξτa02/e is the mean number of photons collected during the scan. Obviously |xa (x)| needs to maintain a large value over the range of uncertainty in the particle position Δx, i.e., |xa (xεΔxxL)| should be approximately constant, and large, for −1 ≲ ε ≲ +1.

This 1D solution generalizes directly to 2D and 3D. Equation (11) can be satisfied by choosing positions that have ija (r) = 0 for all i and j. Again the beam can be held stationary at a sufficient number of these positions during the scan time although a continuous trajectory which maintains these conditions may be easier to implement mechanically and/or optically. The condition ija (r) = 0 for i = j is exactly the same as the condition 2a(x) = 0 in 1D. For ij this condition effectively amounts to having the gradients of a(r) at the chosen positions be mutually orthogonal But, as opposed to 1D where the entire measurement time τ can be spent with the beam locked at one position, in 2D and 3D it is not immediately clear how to divide up the time among the different positions. To be specific let the positions which maximize ϕp [F] be rL(s), with s ranging from 1 to D where D is the number of dimensions and assume that ∇a at each point separately aligns with one of the coordinate axes so that a(rrL(s)) points purely in the rs direction, i.e., a(rrL(1)) points purely in the x direction, and so on, then
ϕp[F]=(1Ds=1DΔtsp|sa(rrL(s))|2p)1/p
(12)
with the constraint that s=1DΔts=τ. Invoking the constraint by setting ΔtD=τs=1D1Δts the dwell times Δtp at each position can be chosen by solving
ϕp[F](Δts)=0fors=1toD1
Note that if the values of |sa(rrL(s))| are the same at all the laser positions then this directly yields that the Δts are equal to τ/D independent of the value of p.

We now apply this solution technique in 3D to a Gaussian beam which has a field amplitude given by [30

30. A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

]
a(x,y,z)=a01+z2/zR2exp[1w02(x2+y21+z2/zR2)]
where zR=πw02/λ is the Rayleigh range, λ is the wavelength and a0=I0. Assume the particle position r is approximately zero on the scale of the width of the Gaussian. Then the positions of center of the Gaussian beam that have the maximum slope in each of the x, y and z directions at the origin are rL(1)=(±w0/2,0,0), rL(2)=(0,±w0/2,0), as before and rL(3)=(0,0,±zR/2). For 2D localization the symmetry of the Gaussian in the xy plane Eq. (12) yields dwell times at rL(1)=(±w0/2,0,0) and rL(2)=(0,±w0/2,0) which are both equal to τ/2.. For localization in all three directions the difference between the slope in the z direction and those in the x and y directions causes the dwell times to depend on p. For p = −1 Eq. (12) we get
Δt1=Δt2=w0τ2w0+9zR/6eΔt3=(9zR/6e)τ2w0+9zR/6e
whereas for p = 0 we get Δt1 = Δt2 = Δt3 = τ/3.

In both 2D and 3D the ± signs lead to minor ambiguity in the particle position since nominally one cannot tell which side of the beam the particle is on. In many cases only the movement of the particle relative to it’s starting position is required and so the absolute position is not required. But the ambiguity can be lifted in any case simply by dithering the beam position slightly in each direction and determining the sign of the change in signal level.

3.1. Gaussian beam in two dimensions via optimal design

Note that the same Fisher matrix is achieved for any pair of orthogonal vectors or for a constant-speed circular scan about the origin so long as the scan points lie on the circle with radius r=w0/2 [26

26. A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Performance bounds on single-particle tracking by fluorescence modulation,” Appl. Phys. B 83, 127–133 (2006). [CrossRef]

].

For any other laser focal position r′ and for any finite p ≤ 1, the inequality that must be satisfied, Eq. (10), becomes
(x2+y2)e2w02(x2+y2)w022e,
This is satisfied for all r′ = (x′, y′) and so both the two point trajectory, rL(1)=(w0/2,0) and rL(2)=(0,w0/2) with Δt1 = Δt2 = τ/2 and the circular trajectory with r=w0/2 are optimal

The Cramér-Rao bound on the two-dimensional localization accuracy corresponding to p = −1 becomes σx2+σy2Tr(F*1), so that
σx2+σy2w022Nph
as quoted in Eq. (1). Note that due to the symmetry of the Gaussian in 2D this result is independent of p.

3.2. Gaussian beam in three dimensions via optimal design

The situation is more complex in three dimensions. Consider the beam profile given by the usual expression [30

30. A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

]
Γ(r)=Γ(x,y,z)=Γ01+z2/zR2exp[2w02(x2+y21+z2/zR2)].
Here, ϕ0 and ϕ−1 optimality are not achieved by the same scan path, so we focus on ϕ−1, which bounds the localization accuracy σx2+σy2+σz2. We can determine optimality by testing a candidate solution. We show that the optimal path is the one derived above given by
rL(1)=(±w02,0,0)Δt1=w0τ2w0+9zR/6e
(13a)
rL(2)=(0,±w02,0)Δt1=w0τ2w0+9zR/6e
(13b)
rL(3)=(0,0,±zR2)Δt3=(9zR/6e)τ2w0+9zR/6e.
(13c)
The Fisher matrix for this scan path, F*, is diagonal and is given by
F*11=F*22=8Γ0τ/e2w02+9zR/6eΓ0τ0.68w02+0.76w0zRF*33=16Γ0τ/6e6w0zR+27zR2/6eΓ0τ1.51w0zR+1.69zR2

To prove the optimality of this path, we compute the following test function [c.f. Eqs. (9) and (10) with p = −1]:
f(r)=gTF*2gTr[F*1]=4ξτ(a(r))TF*2(a(r))Tr[F*1].
(14)

According to the optimality criteria, the scan path is optimal if and only if f (r) ≤ 1 for all r. Writing r = (x,y,z) in convenient dimensionless units where r=x2+y2, r̄ = r/w0 and z̄ = z/zR we find
f(r)=8er¯2(1+z¯2)2+27z¯2(12r¯2+z¯2)24(1+z¯2)5exp[2r¯21+z¯2].
(15)
This function is plotted in Fig. 2, where it is clearly seen not to exceed the value 1 (this can also be shown analytically). Thus, the proposed scan path is ϕ−1-optimal and therefore the three-dimensional localization is always limited by the Cramér-Rao bound, taking here the form
σx2+σy2+σz2Tr[F*1].
Note that because the two optimal points, i.e., the peaks in the graph in Fig. 2, are separated by a valley (f < 1) there is no smoothly varying continuous path in 3D that is optimal for a Gaussian beam. This is in contrast to the 2D case with a Gaussian beam where all the points on the circle r=w0/2 have f = 1 and hence a continuous path can be used if desired. [26

26. A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Performance bounds on single-particle tracking by fluorescence modulation,” Appl. Phys. B 83, 127–133 (2006). [CrossRef]

] The fact that no smoothly varying continuous path is possible in 3D has obvious implications with respect to the practical implementation of these results. True optimality requires the beam to hop instantaneously between z = 0 with r=w0/2 and r = 0 with z=zR/2. In a strict sense this is not possible physically but obviously any system with a hopping time which is tiny fraction of τ will for all practical purposes be optimal.

Computing the number of photons collected along the scan path during a single period from Nph=k=13Γ(rk)Δtk, we can rewrite the best possible three-dimensional localization accuracy, achieved for the optimal scan path given by the weighted solution as
σx2+σy2+σz2w022Nph[1+32(e+32e)zRw0+94zR2w02].
Plugging in the standard expression zR=πw02/λ [30

30. A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

], we recover Eq. (2), proving the initial claim.

4. Conclusions

We have used the calculus of variations to derive the optimum scan path for tracking and localizing a fluorescent particle and have shown that for Gaussian beams in two and three dimensions the calculus of variations result matches the solution derived from the optimal design of experiments. In one dimension this condition corresponds simply to maximizing the signal to noise ratio. In higher dimensions there are multiple signals, essentially one for each direction, and depending on how these are combined into a single signal there are different optimization criteria which is equivalent to having to choose the value of p in the merit function ϕp [F]. These results provide a simple, testable optimality criterion to determine whether a candidate laser scan path encodes maximal information about a fluorescent particles position in the detected photon stream. We presented optimal scan paths for two- and three-dimensional Gaussian beams and used these to derive the best possible localization accuracies, quoted in the introduction. We have shown that the optimal path for 2D localization using a Gaussian beam can be continuous if desired, but the optimal path in 3D for a Gaussian cannot be continuous. These results can be applied to other experimental geometries, including those where multiple detectors - rather than multiple beam positions - are used for real-time localization. Future work should focus on relaxing the assumption that the particle remains effectively stationary during each scan cycle so as to extend optimality results to cases where the particle is moving under a particular dynamic model (for example, free diffusion or diffusion plus flow) or where feedback control may not be sufficiently tight that the particle is well-localized relative to the beam size. Also, it would be worthwhile to determine if there are physically realizable intensity distributions which do allow for the optimal path to be continuous as this might aid the practical implementation of these results.

Appendix A: Justification of the global optimality criterion

The rigorous proof of the optimality condition Eq. (9) is rather complex and will not be presented here. Instead we will present a justification for it. By definition F* is ϕp optimal relative to all other F if and only if
ϕp[F]ϕp[F*]
Substituting the definition of ϕp from Eq. (6) into the above condition, raising both sides to the power p and cancelling factors of 1/d gives
Tr[Fp]Tr[F*p]
Writing Tr[F*p]=(F*p1)ij[F*]ji using [F*]ji=F*ji=n=1Ng*njg*ni after absorbing the cn into the definition of the gn and rearranging gives
Tr[F*p]=n=1Ng*ni[F*p1]ijg*nj=n=1Ng*nTF*p1g*n
All F are real and symmetric and so can be diagonalized by a similarity transformation. Let the similarity transformation which diagonalizes F* be S whose rows are the orthonormal eigenvectors ei of F* with i = 1,...,D in D dimensions. Then S · F*·ST = f* is diagonal and ST · S is the identity matrix. The diagonal elements of f* given by f*i are real and positive since
vTF*v=n=1N(vig*ni)2>0
for any real nonzero v. Writing g*n in terms of the eigenvectors ei (written as column vectors) gives
g*n=i=1Dg¯*niei
As we have seen above, in D dimensions we only need D independent measurements to determine the particles position, i.e., N = D, and that in the representation where F is diagonal that these optimum positions are orthogonal to one another which means
g¯*ni=g¯*iδn,i
Substituting this into S · F*·ST = f* we find
n=1Ng¯*nig¯*nj=g¯*ig¯*jδij=f*iδij
with no sum on i. or j which gives g¯*i=f*i and
n=1Ng*nTf*p1g*n=g*Tf*p1g*
If we now replace g* with an arbitrary g and undo the similarity transformation we have by definition
gTF*p1gTr[F*p]

Appendix B: Maximum likelihood position estimation for an arbitrary scan path

In earlier sections, we derived design criteria for determining which laser scan path contains the most information about a particle’s position, when the particle is near the origin of coordinates. In general, however, we also require an estimation procedure that can extract the position from the detected photon stream. This position estimator must, of course, include some information about the beam size, shape, and the scan path. One candidate is a maximum likelihood estimator, whose performance will be uncertain when the photon number is very small but will tend towards optimality for large photon numbers (how large cannot be determined a priori and is a common criticism of maximum likelihood). In this appendix, we derive a simple linear form for the maximum likelihood estimator of a fluorescent particle’s position for an arbitrary (2D or 3D) scan path, under the assumption that the particle position r is close to the origin. To do this, we can expand the time-detection rate function to second order in r as
Γ[rrL(t)]Γ[rL(t)]+rTΓ|rL(t)+12rTH(Γ)|rL(t)r+O(r3)
(16)
where H(Γ)|rL(t) is the Hessian matrix of partial derivatives of the laser intensity function evaluated at the point −rL(t). For any function f (r), the jk entry of the Hessian matrix is [H(f)]jk=2fxjxk. Plugging this second-order approximation into the likelihood function of Eq. (4) and setting the gradient with respect to particle position r to zero, we find the following linear equation for the maximum likelihood estimate rMLE of the particle position r:
ArMLE+b=0
(17a)
where the D×D matrix A and D×1 vector b depend on the laser scan path and the measurement result {t1,...,tk} through
A=0τH(Γ)|rL(t)dt+k=1KH(logΓ)|rL(tk)
(17b)
b=0τ(Γ)|rL(t)dt+k=1K(logΓ)|rL(tk).
(17c)
The sums over k are understood to be 0 when K = 0. When the functional form of the terms in A and b can be precomputed or approximated, a real-time position estimate can be formed by computing A and b in real time (through the sums over k) and solving the 2- or 3-dimensional linear system.

As a simple example, consider the two-dimensional Gaussian beam example of Sect. with the circular scan path rL(t)=w2(cos2πtτ,sin2πtτ)T. By direct computation, we find
A=K(1001),b=w2k=1KrL(tk)
(18)
so that
rMLE={0,K=0w2(1Kk=1Kcos2πtkτ,1Kk=1Ksin2πtkτ)T,K>0
(19)
Note that the maximum likelihood estimate for this case is given by phase-sensitive lock-in detection of the photon stream tk [26

26. A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Performance bounds on single-particle tracking by fluorescence modulation,” Appl. Phys. B 83, 127–133 (2006). [CrossRef]

].

References and links

1.

R. Thompson, D. Larson, and W. Webb, “Precise nanometer localization analysis for individual fluorescent probes,” Biophys. J. 82, 2775–2783 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

2.

R. Ober, S. Ram, and E. Ward, “Localization accuracy in single-molecule microscopy,” Biophys. J. 86, 1185–1200 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

3.

M. Cheezum, W. Walker, and W. Guilford, “Quantitative comparison of algorithms for tracking single fluorescent particles,” Biophys. J. 81, 2378–2388 (2001). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

4.

J. Crocker and D. Grier, “Methods of digital video microscopy for colloidal studies,” J. Colloid Interf. Sci. 179, 298–310 (1996). [CrossRef]

5.

T. Savin and P. S. Doyle, “Static and dynamic errors in particle tracking microrheology,” Biophys. J. 88, 623–638 (2005). [CrossRef]

6.

M. Dahan, S. Levi, C. Luccardini, P. Rostaing, B. Riveau, and A. Triller, “Diffusion dynamics of single glycine receptors revealed by single-quantum dot tracking,” Science 302, 442–445 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

7.

A. Yildiz, J. N. Forkey, S. A. McKinney, T. Ha, Y. E. Goodman, and P. R. Selvin, “Myosin V walks hand-overhand: Single fluorophore imaging with 1.5-nm localization,” Science 300, 2061–2065 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

8.

B. Huang, M. Bates, and X. Zhuang, “Super resolution fluorescence microscopy,” Annu. Rev. Biochem. 78, 993–1016 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

9.

W. E. Moerner, “New directions in single-molecule imaging and analysis,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 104, 12596–12602 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

10.

H. Cang, C. Shan Xu, and H. Yang, “Progress in single-molecule tracking spectroscopy,” Chem. Phys. Lett. 457, 285–291 (2008). [CrossRef]

11.

A. P. Fields and A. E. Cohen, “Anti-Brownian traps for studies on single molecules,” Method. Enzymol. 475, 149–174 (2010). [CrossRef]

12.

M. Armani, S. Chaudhary, R. Probst, and B. Shapiro, “Using feedback control and micro-fluidics to steer individual particles,” 18th IEEE International Conference on MEMS855–858 (2005).

13.

A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Tracking-FCS: Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy of individual particles,” Opt. Express 13, 8069–8082 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

14.

A. E. Cohen and W. E. Moerner, “Method for trapping and manipulating nanoscale objects in Solution,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 093109 (2005). [CrossRef]

15.

M. Armani, S. Chaudhary, R. Probst, and B. Shapiro, “Using feedback control of microflows to independently steer multiple particles,” IEEE J. Microelectromech. S. 15, 945–956 (2006). [CrossRef]

16.

A. E. Cohen and W. E. Moerner, “Suppressing Brownian motion of individual biomolecules in solution,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 103, 4362–4365 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

17.

Z. Shen and S. Andersson, “Tracking nanometer-scale fluorescent particles in two dimensions with a confocal microscope,” IEEE Trans. Contr. Sys. Tech. 19, 1–10 (2011).

18.

A. P. Fields and A. E. Cohen, “Electrokinetic trapping at the one nanometer limit,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 108, 8937–8942 (2011). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

19.

V. Levi, Q. Ruan, K. Kis-Petikova, and E. Gratton, “Scanning FCS, a novel method for three-dimensional particle tracking,” Biochem. Soc. Technol. 31, 997–1000 (2003). [CrossRef]

20.

V. Levi, Q. Ruan, and E. Gratton, “3-D particle tracking in a two-photon microscope. Application to the study of molecular dynamics in cells,” Biophys. J. 88, 2919–2928 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

21.

H. Cang, C. M. Wong, C. S. Xu, A. H. Rizvi, and H. Yang, “Confocal three dimensional tracking of a single nanoparticle with concurrent spectroscopic readout,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 88, 223,901 (2006). [CrossRef]

22.

K. McHale, A. J. Berglund, and H. Mabuchi, “Quantum dot photon statistics measured by three-dimensional particle tracking,” Nano Lett. 7, 3535–3539 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

23.

G. Lessard, P. Goodwin, and J. Werner, “Three-dimensional tracking of individual quantum dots,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 91, 224,106 (2007). [CrossRef]

24.

H. Cang, D. Montiel, C. Xu, and H. Yang, “Observation of spectral anisotropy of gold nanoparticles,” J. Chem. Phys. 129, 044,503 (2008). [CrossRef]

25.

K. McHale and H. Mabuchi, “Precise characterization of the conformation fluctuations of freely diffusing DNA: beyond Rouse and Zimm,” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 131, 17901–17907 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

26.

A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Performance bounds on single-particle tracking by fluorescence modulation,” Appl. Phys. B 83, 127–133 (2006). [CrossRef]

27.

A. J. Berglund, K. McHale, and H. Mabuchi, “Feedback localization of freely diffusing fluorescent particles near the optical shot-noise limit,” Opt. Lett. 32, 145–147 (2007). [CrossRef]

28.

Z. Shen and S. Andersson, “Optimal measurement constellation of the fluoroBancroft localization algorithm for position estimation in tracking confocal microscopy,” Mechatronics 22, 320–326 (2012). [CrossRef]

29.

Q. Wang and W. Moerner, “Optimal strategy for trapping single fluorescent molecules in solution using the ABEL trap,” Appl. Phys. B 99, 23–30 (2010). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

30.

A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

31.

K. A. Winnick, “Cramer-Rao lower bounds on the performance of charge-coupled-device optical position estimators,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 3, 1809–1815 (1986). [CrossRef]

32.

H. Kao and A. Verkman, “Tracking of single fluorescent particles in three dimensions: use of cylindrical optics to encode particle position,” Biophys. J. 67, 1291–1300 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

33.

S. Pavani and R. Piestun, “Three dimensional tracking of fluorescent microparticles using a photon-limited double-helix response system,” Opt. Express 16, 22048–22057 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

34.

K. T. Seale, R. S. Reiserer, D. A. Markov, I. A. Ges, C. Wright, C. Janetopoulos, and J. P. Wikswo, “Mirrored pyramidal wells for simultaneous multiple vantage point microscopy,” J. Microsc. 232, 1–6 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

35.

M. D. McMahon, A. J. Berglund, P. Carmichael, J. J. McClelland, and J. A. Liddle, “3D Particle trajectories observed by orthogonal tracking microscopy,” ACS Nano 3, 609–614 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

36.

S. Zacks, The Theory of Statistical Inference (John Wiley & Sons, 1971).

37.

F. Pukelsheim, Optimal design of experiments (Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, 2006). [CrossRef]

OCIS Codes
(180.2520) Microscopy : Fluorescence microscopy
(110.3055) Imaging systems : Information theoretical analysis

ToC Category:
Microscopy

History
Original Manuscript: May 17, 2012
Revised Manuscript: June 7, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: June 8, 2012
Published: July 3, 2012

Virtual Issues
Vol. 7, Iss. 9 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Citation
Gregg M. Gallatin and Andrew J. Berglund, "Optimal laser scan path for localizing a fluorescent particle in two or three dimensions," Opt. Express 20, 16381-16393 (2012)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-20-15-16381


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References

  1. R. Thompson, D. Larson, and W. Webb, “Precise nanometer localization analysis for individual fluorescent probes,” Biophys. J.82, 2775–2783 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. R. Ober, S. Ram, and E. Ward, “Localization accuracy in single-molecule microscopy,” Biophys. J.86, 1185–1200 (2004). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  3. M. Cheezum, W. Walker, and W. Guilford, “Quantitative comparison of algorithms for tracking single fluorescent particles,” Biophys. J.81, 2378–2388 (2001). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. J. Crocker and D. Grier, “Methods of digital video microscopy for colloidal studies,” J. Colloid Interf. Sci.179, 298–310 (1996). [CrossRef]
  5. T. Savin and P. S. Doyle, “Static and dynamic errors in particle tracking microrheology,” Biophys. J.88, 623–638 (2005). [CrossRef]
  6. M. Dahan, S. Levi, C. Luccardini, P. Rostaing, B. Riveau, and A. Triller, “Diffusion dynamics of single glycine receptors revealed by single-quantum dot tracking,” Science302, 442–445 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. A. Yildiz, J. N. Forkey, S. A. McKinney, T. Ha, Y. E. Goodman, and P. R. Selvin, “Myosin V walks hand-overhand: Single fluorophore imaging with 1.5-nm localization,” Science300, 2061–2065 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. B. Huang, M. Bates, and X. Zhuang, “Super resolution fluorescence microscopy,” Annu. Rev. Biochem.78, 993–1016 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  9. W. E. Moerner, “New directions in single-molecule imaging and analysis,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA104, 12596–12602 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  10. H. Cang, C. Shan Xu, and H. Yang, “Progress in single-molecule tracking spectroscopy,” Chem. Phys. Lett.457, 285–291 (2008). [CrossRef]
  11. A. P. Fields and A. E. Cohen, “Anti-Brownian traps for studies on single molecules,” Method. Enzymol.475, 149–174 (2010). [CrossRef]
  12. M. Armani, S. Chaudhary, R. Probst, and B. Shapiro, “Using feedback control and micro-fluidics to steer individual particles,” 18th IEEE International Conference on MEMS855–858 (2005).
  13. A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Tracking-FCS: Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy of individual particles,” Opt. Express13, 8069–8082 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  14. A. E. Cohen and W. E. Moerner, “Method for trapping and manipulating nanoscale objects in Solution,” Appl. Phys. Lett.86, 093109 (2005). [CrossRef]
  15. M. Armani, S. Chaudhary, R. Probst, and B. Shapiro, “Using feedback control of microflows to independently steer multiple particles,” IEEE J. Microelectromech. S.15, 945–956 (2006). [CrossRef]
  16. A. E. Cohen and W. E. Moerner, “Suppressing Brownian motion of individual biomolecules in solution,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA103, 4362–4365 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  17. Z. Shen and S. Andersson, “Tracking nanometer-scale fluorescent particles in two dimensions with a confocal microscope,” IEEE Trans. Contr. Sys. Tech.19, 1–10 (2011).
  18. A. P. Fields and A. E. Cohen, “Electrokinetic trapping at the one nanometer limit,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA108, 8937–8942 (2011). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  19. V. Levi, Q. Ruan, K. Kis-Petikova, and E. Gratton, “Scanning FCS, a novel method for three-dimensional particle tracking,” Biochem. Soc. Technol.31, 997–1000 (2003). [CrossRef]
  20. V. Levi, Q. Ruan, and E. Gratton, “3-D particle tracking in a two-photon microscope. Application to the study of molecular dynamics in cells,” Biophys. J.88, 2919–2928 (2005). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  21. H. Cang, C. M. Wong, C. S. Xu, A. H. Rizvi, and H. Yang, “Confocal three dimensional tracking of a single nanoparticle with concurrent spectroscopic readout,” Appl. Phys. Lett.88, 223,901 (2006). [CrossRef]
  22. K. McHale, A. J. Berglund, and H. Mabuchi, “Quantum dot photon statistics measured by three-dimensional particle tracking,” Nano Lett.7, 3535–3539 (2007). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  23. G. Lessard, P. Goodwin, and J. Werner, “Three-dimensional tracking of individual quantum dots,” Appl. Phys. Lett.91, 224,106 (2007). [CrossRef]
  24. H. Cang, D. Montiel, C. Xu, and H. Yang, “Observation of spectral anisotropy of gold nanoparticles,” J. Chem. Phys.129, 044,503 (2008). [CrossRef]
  25. K. McHale and H. Mabuchi, “Precise characterization of the conformation fluctuations of freely diffusing DNA: beyond Rouse and Zimm,” J. Am. Chem. Soc.131, 17901–17907 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  26. A. J. Berglund and H. Mabuchi, “Performance bounds on single-particle tracking by fluorescence modulation,” Appl. Phys. B83, 127–133 (2006). [CrossRef]
  27. A. J. Berglund, K. McHale, and H. Mabuchi, “Feedback localization of freely diffusing fluorescent particles near the optical shot-noise limit,” Opt. Lett.32, 145–147 (2007). [CrossRef]
  28. Z. Shen and S. Andersson, “Optimal measurement constellation of the fluoroBancroft localization algorithm for position estimation in tracking confocal microscopy,” Mechatronics22, 320–326 (2012). [CrossRef]
  29. Q. Wang and W. Moerner, “Optimal strategy for trapping single fluorescent molecules in solution using the ABEL trap,” Appl. Phys. B99, 23–30 (2010). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  30. A. E. Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).
  31. K. A. Winnick, “Cramer-Rao lower bounds on the performance of charge-coupled-device optical position estimators,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A3, 1809–1815 (1986). [CrossRef]
  32. H. Kao and A. Verkman, “Tracking of single fluorescent particles in three dimensions: use of cylindrical optics to encode particle position,” Biophys. J.67, 1291–1300 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  33. S. Pavani and R. Piestun, “Three dimensional tracking of fluorescent microparticles using a photon-limited double-helix response system,” Opt. Express16, 22048–22057 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  34. K. T. Seale, R. S. Reiserer, D. A. Markov, I. A. Ges, C. Wright, C. Janetopoulos, and J. P. Wikswo, “Mirrored pyramidal wells for simultaneous multiple vantage point microscopy,” J. Microsc.232, 1–6 (2008). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  35. M. D. McMahon, A. J. Berglund, P. Carmichael, J. J. McClelland, and J. A. Liddle, “3D Particle trajectories observed by orthogonal tracking microscopy,” ACS Nano3, 609–614 (2009). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  36. S. Zacks, The Theory of Statistical Inference (John Wiley & Sons, 1971).
  37. F. Pukelsheim, Optimal design of experiments (Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, 2006). [CrossRef]

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