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Diagnostic imaging techniques are commonly used in a clinical setting for the detection of abnormalities. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a relatively novel imaging technique capable of performing structural and functional analysis of various tissue specimens. When structural imaging is limited by the resolution of the system, functional imaging, e.g. through the quantification of the permeability rate of chemical compounds within tissue, can be used to distinguish between normal and abnormal tissue. In this paper we quantitatively demonstrate that the spatiotemporal diffusion characteristics of various compounds in ocular and vascular tissues assessed with OCT-based functional biosensor has superior sensitivity for the detection of early tissue abnormalities when compared to other standard imaging methods. For example, the permeability of glucose molecules in abnormal porcine aorta was found to be more than triple that in normal tissue while structural imaging failed to find the difference. These results suggest that OCT has great capability to enhance and supplement existing biosensing/diagnostic methods in the detection and assessment of tissue abnormalities.