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Tomographic brain imaging with nucleolar detail and automatic cell counting

DOI: 10.1038/srep32156 DOI Help

Authors: Simone E. Hieber (Biomaterials Science Center, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel) , Christos Bikis (Biomaterials Science Center, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel) , Anna Khimchenko (Biomaterials Science Center, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel) , Gabriel Schweighauser (Institute of Pathology, Department of Neuropathology, University Hospital of Basel) , Jürgen Hench (Institute of Pathology, Department of Neuropathology, University Hospital of Basel) , Natalia Chicherova (University of Basel) , Georg Schulz (Biomaterials Science Center, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel) , Bert Müller (Biomaterials Science Center, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Scientific Reports , VOL 6

State: Published (Approved)
Published: September 2016

Open Access Open Access

Abstract: Brain tissue evaluation is essential for gaining in-depth insight into its diseases and disorders. Imaging the human brain in three dimensions has always been a challenge on the cell level. In vivo methods lack spatial resolution, and optical microscopy has a limited penetration depth. Herein, we show that hard X-ray phase tomography can visualise a volume of up to 43 mm3 of human post mortem or biopsy brain samples, by demonstrating the method on the cerebellum. We automatically identified 5,000 Purkinje cells with an error of less than 5% at their layer and determined the local surface density to 165 cells per mm2 on average. Moreover, we highlight that three-dimensional data allows for the segmentation of sub-cellular structures, including dendritic tree and Purkinje cell nucleoli, without dedicated staining. The method suggests that automatic cell feature quantification of human tissues is feasible in phase tomograms obtained with isotropic resolution in a label-free manner.

Subject Areas: Medicine, Biology and Bio-materials


Instruments: I13-2-Diamond Manchester Imaging

Other Facilities: ESRF

Documents:
srep32156.pdf