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Tissue-simulating phantoms are widely used for controlled studies of photon transport in turbid media. Here, we describe how polystyrene microspheres, which are often used to simulate optical scattering in such phantoms, can reduce fluorophore quantum yield via collisional quenching. We report studies on UV-visible (fluorescein-based) and NIR (IR125-based) phantoms with differing fluorophore and scatterer concentrations, as well as differing microsphere sizes. Results consistent with thedoi:10.1364/oe.14.007776 pmid:19529147 fatcat:zxijddrtfvgijkibaqh5es5eyu