A method of analyzing sample material having more than one fluorescing species comprises the steps of providing a plurality of intensity-modulated excitation light beams each being modulated at a respective unique frequency; directing the intensity-modulated excitation light beams to interact with the sample material; detecting fluorescence emission light from the sample material to provide signal information representative of detected light intensity versus time; and extracting a plurality of component emission signals from the signal information, wherein each component emission signal corresponds to a respective one of the modulated excitation light beams. Apparatus for implementing the method include flow cytometers and bulk sample analytical optical systems. The invention is helpful in determining species concentrations in cases where the fluorescing species have overlapping or substantially the same emission spectra.
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