High-resolution micro-CT for 3D infarct characterization and segmentation in mice stroke models
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Characterization of brain infarct lesions in rodent models of stroke is crucial to assess stroke pathophysiology and therapy outcome. Until recently, the analysis of brain lesions was performed using two techniques: (1) histological methods, such as TTC (Triphenyltetrazolium chloride), a time-consuming and inaccurate process; or (2) MRI imaging, a faster, 3D imaging method, that comes at a high cost. In the last decade, high-resolution micro-CT for 3D sample analysis turned into a simple, fast, and cheaper solution. Here, we successfully describe the application of brain contrasting agents (Osmium tetroxide and inorganic iodine) for high-resolution micro-CT imaging for fine location and quantification of ischemic lesion and edema in mouse preclinical stroke models. We used the intraluminal transient MCAO (Middle Cerebral Artery Occlusion) mouse stroke model to identify and quantify ischemic lesion and edema, and segment core and penumbra regions at different time points after ischemia, by manual and automatic methods. In the transient-ischemic-attack (TIA) mouse model, we can quantify striatal myelinated fibers degeneration. Of note, whole brain 3D reconstructions allow brain atlas co-registration, to identify the affected brain areas, and correlate them with functional impairment. This methodology proves to be a breakthrough in the field, by providing a precise and detailed assessment of stroke outcomes in preclinical animal studies.
Document typePeer reviewed
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SourceScientific Reports. 2022, vol. 12, issue 1, p. 1-22.