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X-ray Micro-Computed Tomography for Nondestructive Three-Dimensional (3D) X-ray Histology.

ABSTRACT: Historically, micro-computed tomography (?CT) has been considered unsuitable for histologic analysis of unstained formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded soft tissue biopsy specimens because of a lack of image contrast between the tissue and the paraffin. However, we recently demonstrated that ?CT can successfully resolve microstructural detail in routinely prepared tissue specimens. Herein, we illustrate how ?CT imaging of standard formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded biopsy specimens can be seamlessly integrated into conventional histology workflows, enabling nondestructive three-dimensional (3D) X-ray histology, the use and benefits of which we showcase for the exemplar of human lung biopsy specimens. This technology advancement was achieved through manufacturing a first-of-kind ?CT scanner for X-ray histology and developing optimized imaging protocols, which do not require any additional sample preparation. 3D X-ray histology allows for nondestructive 3D imaging of tissue microstructure, resolving structural connectivity and heterogeneity of complex tissue networks, such as the vascular network or the respiratory tract. We also demonstrate that 3D X-ray histology can yield consistent and reproducible image quality, enabling quantitative assessment of a tissue's 3D microstructures, which is inaccessible to conventional two-dimensional histology. Being nondestructive, the technique does not interfere with histology workflows, permitting subsequent tissue characterization by means of conventional light microscopy-based histology, immunohistochemistry, and immunofluorescence. 3D X-ray histology can be readily applied to a plethora of archival materials, yielding unprecedented opportunities in diagnosis and research of disease.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6680277 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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