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J Biophotonics. 2014 Aug;7(8):638-46. doi: 10.1002/jbio.201300036. Epub 2013 Jul 29.

Imaging the noncentrosymmetric structural organization of tendon with Interferometric Second Harmonic Generation microscopy.

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  • 1Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique, Centre Énergie Matériaux Télécommunications, 1650 Boulevard Lionel-Boulet, Varennes, QC, J3X1S2, Canada.


We report the imaging of tendon with Interferometric Second Harmonic Generation microscopy. We observe that the noncentrosymmetric structural organization can be maintained along the fibrillar axis over more than 150 μm, while in the transverse direction it is ∼1-15 μm. Those results are explained by modeling tendon as a heterogeneous distribution of noncentrosymmetric nano-cylinders (collagen fibrils) oriented along the fibrillar axis. The preservation of the noncentrosymmetric structural organization over multiple tens of microns reveals that tendon is made of domains in which the ratio between fibrils with positive and negative polarity is unbalanced.

Copyright © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Interferometry; Second Harmonic Generation; collagen; connective tissues; microscopy; nonlinear optics; tendon; tissue imaging

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