P1.50 Jan. 4 The use of synchrotron x-ray microtomography for studies of fine-scale 3D morphology SOCHA, J.J.**; FEZZAA, K.; LEE, W.K.; DE CARLO, F.; Argonne National Laboratory; Argonne National Laboratory; Argonne National Laboratory; Argonne National Laboratory email@example.com
Understanding the morphology of small anatomical structures is a cornerstone of biology. Classical techniques such as histology have been integral to centuries of progress in anatomy, but can be problematic for some applications due to destruction of the sample and deformation of structures within the slices. Modern techniques such as confocal microscopy, MRI, and tabletop x-ray microCT provide effective non-invasive methods for studying in situ morphology. However, each of these tools each has limitations that include sample size constraints, resolution limits, and difficulty visualizing soft tissue. Here we document the use of a synchrotron x-ray microtomography system for studies of 3D anatomy, providing a powerful complement to other techniques. Using the 2-BM beamline at Argonne National Laboratory's Advanced Photon Source, we show that morphological structures, including traditionally problematic soft tissue, can be clearly and quickly visualized with micron-scale resolution, revealing naturalistic 3D morphology. Samples can be imaged within 1-3 hours, and data are available as computerized slices after only 1 hour of processing. To obtain highest resolution, the maximum diameter of the sample must be on the scale of 5 mm; however, height is not limiting. Beamtime at the APS is free for all users. Here we highlight examples of 3D morphology from both vertebrate and invertebrate taxa, exhibiting a technique that holds great promise for studies in development, evolution, paleontology, physiology, and biomechanics. Use of the Advanced Photon Source was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences, under Contract No. W-31-109-Eng-38.