Breast cancer is a major public health problem worldwide, being the most common type of cancer among women according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO has further stressed the importance of an early determination of the disease course through prognostic markers. Recent studies have shown that the alignment of collagen fibers in tumor adjacent stroma correlate with poorer health outcomes in patients. Such studies have typically been carried out using Second-Harmonic Generation (SHG) microscopy. SHG images are very useful for quantifying collagen fiber orientation due their specificity to non-centrosymmetric structures in tissue, leading to high contrast in collagen rich areas. However, the imaging throughput in SHG microscopy is limited by its point scanning geometry. In this work, we show that SLIM, a wide-field high-throughput QPI technique, can be used to obtain the same information on collagen fiber orientation as is obtainable through SHG microscopy. We imaged a tissue microarray containing both benign and malignant cores using both SHG microscopy and SLIM. The cellular (non-collagenous) structures in the SLIM images were next segmented out using an algorithm developed in-house. Using the previously published Fourier Transform Second Harmonic Generation (FT-SHG) tool, the fiber orientations in SHG and segmented SLIM images were then quantified. The resulting histograms of fiber orientation angles showed that both SHG and SLIM generate similar measurements of collagen fiber orientation. The SLIM modality, however, can generate these results at much higher throughput due to its wide-field, whole-slide scanning capabilities.
Hassaan Majeed, Chukwuemeka Okoro, Andre Balla, Kimani C. Toussaint, and Gabriel Popescu, "Quantifying collagen orientation in breast tissue biopsies using SLIM (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10074, Quantitative Phase Imaging III, 100740Z (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 31, 2017; Published: 24 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2250713.5380600142001.
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