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J Angiogenes Res. 2010 Mar 5;2:7. doi: 10.1186/2040-2384-2-7.

Micro computed tomography for vascular exploration.

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  • 1Inserm U828, Plateforme d'Innovation Biotechnologique de Xavier Arnozan, Université Victor Ségalen, Bordeaux 2, Pessac, France.

Abstract

Vascular exploration of small animals requires imaging hardware with a very high spatial resolution, capable of differentiating large as well as small vessels, in both in vivo and ex vivo studies. Micro Computed Tomography (micro-CT) has emerged in recent years as the preferred modality for this purpose, providing high resolution 3D volumetric data suitable for analysis, quantification, validation, and visualization of results. The usefulness of micro-CT, however, can be adversely affected by a range of factors including physical animal preparation, numerical quantification, visualization of results, and quantification software with limited possibilities. Exacerbating these inherent difficulties is the lack of a unified standard for micro-CT imaging. Most micro-CT today is aimed at particular applications and the software tools needed for quantification, developed mainly by imaging hardware manufacturers, lack the level of detail needed to address more specific aims. This review highlights the capabilities of micro-CT for vascular exploration, describes the current state of imaging protocols, and offers guidelines and suggestions aimed at making micro-CT more accurate, replicable, and robust.

PMID:
20298533
PMCID:
PMC2841094
DOI:
10.1186/2040-2384-2-7
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