A comparison of classical histology to anatomy revealed by hard X-rays

Claus-Peter Richter, Xiaodong Tan, Hunter Young, Stuart R Stock, Alan Robinson, Orest Byskosh, Jing Zheng, Carmen Soriano, Xianghui Xiao, Donna S Whitlon

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations


Many diseases trigger morphological changes in affected tissue. Today, classical histology is still the "gold standard" used to study and describe those changes. Classical histology, however, is time consuming and requires chemical tissue manipulations that can result in significant tissue distortions. It is sometimes difficult to separate tissue-processing artifacts from changes caused by the disease process. We show that synchrotron X-ray phase-contrast micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) can be used to examine non-embedded, hydrated tissue at a resolution comparable to that obtained with classical histology. The data analysis from stacks of reconstructed micro-CT images is more flexible and faster than when using the classical, physically embedded sections that are by necessity fixed in a particular orientation. We show that in a three-dimensional (3D) structure with meticulous structural details such as the cochlea and the kidney, micro-CT is more flexible, faster and more convenient for morphological studies and disease diagnoses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDevelopments in X-Ray Tomography X
EditorsGe Wang, Stuart R. Stock, Bert Muller
ISBN (Electronic)9781510603257
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
EventDevelopments in X-Ray Tomography X - San Diego, United States
Duration: Aug 29 2016Aug 31 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


OtherDevelopments in X-Ray Tomography X
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • X-rays
  • cochlea
  • histology
  • hyaline cartilage
  • kidney
  • phase contrast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'A comparison of classical histology to anatomy revealed by hard X-rays'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this