The NIRSOptix Official Blog: The latest on CW6 and the world of NIRS.

TechEn Introduces Wearable, Wireless fNIRS Device at fNIRS2014

Posted on October 10th, 2014

TechEn, a worldwide leader in the development and sale of fNIRS technology, is pleased to announce its new wearable, wireless fNIRS device. The company introduces the device today at the fNIRS 2014 Conference in Montreal.

Weighing less than 2 pounds and using TechEn’s trademarked low-profile optodes, the device enables study of brain activation in almost any environment—outdoors and in office settings, for example, as well as in the lab. Thus it can benefit research in a range of high-interest areas, including psychology, learning, language perception, sports medicine and concussions, and more.

For the past 14 years, TechEn and Dr. David Boas at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have advanced optical technology for research in brain and breast imaging. The real-time systems have enabled multi-modal simultaneous use of optical functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) with fMRI, EEG, MEG, TMS, or tDCS. Also, they easily integrate with Polhemus 3-D localization, Eye-Tracking, and short distance fibers for assessments of physiology.

The systems are sold worldwide through TechEn, sister company NIRSOPTIX, and distributors in China and France.

Download a brochure here.

Join TechEn for the Year of the Brain

Posted on June 10th, 2014

TechEn is sponsoring the Year of the Brain forum organized by Medical Development Group. On Wednesday, June 11, the forum will bring together a distinguished panel of researchers and clinicians for a discussion of the current state of neuroscience, promising biopharma and device industry initiatives, and future prospects for the treatment of neurological disorders. Read more and register for the event here.

TechEn CW6 Sales in China

Posted on April 6th, 2014

TechEn is pleased to announce its second sale of the CW6 optical imaging system in China within the past 6 months. TechEn is a leading developer of optical imaging technology known as functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS). The new technology is used in research to study a range of brain functions and disorders—non-invasively and with no radiation—in a natural environment.

While Michelle Obama was giving a talk at Peking University to American students studying in China, TechEn was on the campus training researchers and graduate students. The Peking psychology lab will use the system to study vision as well as other brain-related connectivity. The photos below show TechEn and students engaged in the hands-on-training, including the very successful use of the CW6 and data analysis during a multi-modal study, utilizing both the CW6 fNIRS and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

Engaged students at Peking University during TechEn CW6 fNIRS training.

Engaged students at Peking University during TechEn CW6 fNIRS training.


Introducing the CW6 in Peking


Further CW6 fNIRS training.

TechEn CW6 fNIRS and TMS at Peking University.

TechEn CW6 fNIRS and TMS at Peking University.

Demonstrating data analysis with multi-modal data.

Demonstrating data analysis during a multi-modal study.


The renowned library at Peking University.


TechEn Featured in BioPhotonics Article

Posted on March 9th, 2014

The trade journal BioPhotonics spoke to Arthur “Buzz” DiMartinos, president of TechEn, for a recent article about fiber-optic probes.

BioPhotonics article highlights multimodal imaging with NIRS

Posted on April 12th, 2013

The March issue of BioPhotonics spotlights research by Qianqian Fang and colleagues in a feature article about multimodal imaging. Fang, an investigator at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, is working to advance imaging of breast cancer using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) technology developed by TechEn combined with digital breast tomosynthesis.

Homer2 is more robust than ever

Posted on March 27th, 2013

Last week our collaborators at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School released an updated version of Homer2, the widely used data analysis package for CW6 and other NIRS instruments. We checked in with developers David Boas and Jay Dubb to see what’s new and exciting.

First, they said, is the implementation of new motion correction algorithms, which allows users to recover trials that would otherwise be rejected because the subject moved in some way during the experiment. This is, of course, important in obtaining the best possible measurements. “You want to preserve as much data as possible to get better statistical accuracy in your estimate of brain activation,” David said.

The new release adds several algorithms and experimenters can choose which ones to use. The developers have recently published papers comparing them and their respective strengths to help users in determining which is best suited to their particular needs (see: Cooper, R.J., Selb, J., Gagnon, L., Phillip, D., Schytz, H.W., Iversen, H.K., Ashina, M. and Boas, D.A. (2012). “A systematic comparison of motion artifact correction techniques for functional near-infrared spectroscopy.” Front Neurosci 6: 147).

Another improvement: Homer2 is now better able to handle multiple trials from the same subject – these need to be averaged before they are grouped with the data from other subjects. Previously, the package would treat all files as different subjects by default and the experimenter had to adhere to a strict naming convention to identify the same-subject trials. This could be time-consuming and might even lead to problems due to misnaming – if the experimenter missed something as simple as an underscore, for example.

Now, Homer2 lets you create subdirectories and drop in multiple files from the same subject. “Rather than parsing names and figuring out which files belong to which subject,” Jay said, “it just looks at each directory in your group directory. It basically goes one level deeper and interprets those files into the same data structure.”

They noted other fixes and improvements as well, combining to make Homer2 more stable and more robust than ever before.

And there are new features in the works: most notably, the AtlasViewer. Typically, with NIRS, you don’t have anatomical guidance in interpreting your results. With the viewer, your results are registered on a representative anatomy of the brain, providing this guidance and thus improving interpretation of your data (see: Cooper, R.J., Caffini, M., Dubb, J., Fang, Q., Custo, A., Tsuzuki, D., Fischl, B., Wells, W., 3rd, Dan, I. and Boas, D.A. (2012). “Validating atlas-guided DOT: A comparison of diffuse optical tomography informed by atlas and subject-specific anatomies.” Neuroimage 62(3): 1999-2006).

The Homer2 package is an important part of the success of near-infrared spectroscopy, offering a relatively user-friendly means of analyzing and interpreting NIRS data. Its utility is evidenced by the growing Homer2 community. The number of downloads is increasing, David said, growing to more than 400 during the last year. And activity on the homer-users email list is spiking – “presumably because we have hit a critical mass of users.”

Check out Homer2 – and associated documentation and tutorials – here.

fNIRS 2012 poster: CW6 Recent Advancements

Posted on March 22nd, 2013

We thought we’d take this opportunity to share the poster we presented at the fNIRS 2012 meeting held in London in October. The poster describes the latest advances in CW6 technology; applications and studies; and TechEn software, accessories and support.

The second biennial conference for users and developers of the rapidly developing fNIRS technology, fNIRS 2012 covered all the latest progress in the field. Leading experts from around the world gathered to discuss developmental, cognitive and clinical applications of the technology as well as the most recent advances in instrumentation, signal processing and data interpretation. TechEn was proud to be a sponsor of the meeting.

Click on the image below to view a PDF of the poster.


Welcome to the new

Posted on March 22nd, 2013

We’re excited to announce the new NIRSOptix website, with improved navigation and design and up-to-the-minute content. Now you can browse the site more easily than ever – discovering the many ways our team and our CW6 technology can help you achieve your goals.

Also, we’ve introduced the blog you’re now reading. We’ll use this space to report any news about our technology and our team, but also to talk about developments in the field generally – new findings in the application areas we serve, training and education opportunities, you name it. Next week we plan to talk about the new release of the Homer2 data analysis software developed by our collaborators at Massachusetts General Hospital. So check back soon.

And while you’re here, take a look around the site and let us know what you think.