Ultrasmall compact CMOS imaging system for bioluminescence reporter-based live gene expression analysis

Joshua Philippe Olorocisimo, Jeric Briones, Kiyotaka Sasagawa, Makito Haruta, Hironari Takehara, Hiroyuki Tashiro, Norihiro Ishida-Kitagawa, Yasumasa Bessho, Jun Ohta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Significance: Gene expression analysis is an important fundamental area of biomedical research. However, live gene expression imaging has proven challenging due to constraints in conventional optical devices and fluorescent reporters. Aim: Our aim is to develop smaller, more cost-effective, and versatile imaging capabilities compared with conventional devices. Bioluminescence reporter-based gene expression analysis was targeted due to its advantages over fluorescence-based imaging. Approach: We created a small compact imaging system using micro-CMOS image sensors (μCIS). The μCIS model had an improved pixel design and a patterned absorption filter array to detect the low light intensity of bioluminescence. Results: The device demonstrated lower dark current, lower temporal noise, and higher sensitivity compared with previous designs. The filter array enabled us to subtract dark current drift and attain a clearer light signal. These improvements allowed us to measure bioluminescence reporter-based gene expression in living mammalian cells. Conclusion: Using our μCIS system for bioluminescence imaging in the future, the device can be implanted in vivo for simultaneous gene expression imaging, behavioral analysis, and optogenetic modulation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number116002
JournalJournal of Biomedical Optics
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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