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Brain virtual histology with X-ray phase-contrast tomography Part I: whole-brain myelin mapping in white-matter injury models

Abstract : White-matter injury leads to severe functional loss in many neurological diseases. Myelin staining on histological samples is the most common technique to investigate white-matter fibers. However, tissue processing and sectioning may affect the reliability of 3D volumetric assessments. The purpose of this study was to propose an approach that enables myelin fibers to be mapped in the whole rodent brain with microscopic resolution and without the need for strenuous staining. With this aim, we coupled inline (propagation-based) X-ray phase-contrast tomography (XPCT) to ethanol-induced brain sample dehydration. We here provide the proof-of-concept that this approach enhances myelinated axons in rodent and human brain tissue. In addition, we demonstrated that white-matter injuries could be detected and quantified with this approach, using three animal models: ischemic stroke, premature birth and multiple sclerosis. Furthermore, in analogy to diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), we retrieved fiber directions and DTI-like diffusion metrics from our XPCT data to quantitatively characterize white-matter microstructure. Finally, we showed that this non-destructive approach was compatible with subsequent complementary brain sample analysis by conventional histology. In-line XPCT might thus become a novel gold-standard for investigating white-matter injury in the intact brain. This is Part I of a series of two articles reporting the value of in-line XPCT for virtual histology of the brain; Part II shows how in-line XPCT enables the whole-brain 3D morphometric analysis of amyloid-β (Aβ) plaques.
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Contributor : Fabien Chauveau Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, March 30, 2022 - 11:08:17 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, August 10, 2022 - 11:59:25 AM


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Matthieu Chourrout, Hugo Rositi, Elodie Ong, Violaine Hubert, Alexandre Paccalet, et al.. Brain virtual histology with X-ray phase-contrast tomography Part I: whole-brain myelin mapping in white-matter injury models. Biomedical optics express, Optical Society of America - OSA Publishing, 2022, 13 (3), pp.1620-1639. ⟨10.1364/BOE.438832⟩. ⟨hal-03428448v2⟩



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