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Intravascular photoacoustic (IVPA) imaging is a technique for visualizing atherosclerotic plaques with differential composition. Unlike conventional photoacoustic tomography scanning, where the scanning device rotates around the subject, the scanning aperture in IVPA imaging is enclosed within the imaged object. The display of the intravascular structure is typically obtained by converting detected photoacoustic waves into Cartesian coordinates, which can produce images with severe artifacts. Because the acquired data are highly limited, there does not exist a stable reconstruction algorithm for such imaging geometry. The purpose of this work was to apply image reconstruction concepts to explore the feasibility and efficacy of image reconstruction algorithms in IVPA imaging using traditional analytical formulas, such as a filtered back-projection (FBP) and the lambda-tomography method. Although the closed-form formulas are not exact for the IVPA system, a general picture of and interface information about objects are provided. To improve the quality of the reconstructed image, the iterative expectation maximization and penalized least-squares methods were adopted to minimize the difference between the measured signals and those generated by a reconstructed image. In this work, we considered both the ideal point detector and the acoustic transducers with finite- size aperture. The transducer effects including the spatial response of aperture and acoustoelectrical impulse responses were incorporated in the system matrix to reduce the aroused distortion in the IVPA reconstruction. Computer simulations and experiments were carried out to validate the methods. The applicability and the limitation of the reconstruction method were also discussed.