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Mutagenesis. 2011 Jan;26(1):169-75. doi: 10.1093/mutage/geq057.

Automated scoring of lymphocyte micronuclei by the MetaSystems Metafer image cytometry system and its application in studies of human mutagen sensitivity and biodosimetry of genotoxin exposure.

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1
Department of Genetic Ecotoxicology, Institute of Experimental Medicine, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, v.v.i., Vídeňská 1083, 142 20 Prague 4, Czech Republic.

Abstract

Automated image analysis scoring of micronuclei (MN) in cells can facilitate the objective and rapid measurement of genetic damage in mammalian and human cells. This approach was repeatedly developed and tested over the past two decades but none of the systems were sufficiently robust for routine analysis of MN until recently. New methodological, hardware and software developments have now allowed more advanced systems to become available. This mini-review presents the current stage of development and validation of the Metasystems Metafer MNScore system for automated image analysis scoring of MN in cytokinesis-blocked binucleated lymphocytes, which is the best-established method for studying MN formation in humans. The results and experience of users of this system from 2004 until today are reviewed in this paper. Significant achievements in the application of this method in research related to mutagen sensitivity phenotype in cancer risk, radiation biodosimetry and biomonitoring studies of air pollution (enriched by new data) are described. Advantages as well as limitations of automated image analysis in comparison with traditional visual analysis are discussed. The current increased use of the Metasystems Metafer MNScore system in various studies and the growing number of publications based on automated image analysis scoring of MN is promising for the ongoing and future application of this approach.

PMID:
21164199
DOI:
10.1093/mutage/geq057
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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