Emphysema diagnosis using X-ray dark-field imaging at a laser-driven compact synchrotron light source

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Oct 30;109(44):17880-5. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1206684109. Epub 2012 Oct 16.


In early stages of various pulmonary diseases, such as emphysema and fibrosis, the change in X-ray attenuation is not detectable with absorption-based radiography. To monitor the morphological changes that the alveoli network undergoes in the progression of these diseases, we propose using the dark-field signal, which is related to small-angle scattering in the sample. Combined with the absorption-based image, the dark-field signal enables better discrimination between healthy and emphysematous lung tissue in a mouse model. All measurements have been performed at 36 keV using a monochromatic laser-driven miniature synchrotron X-ray source (Compact Light Source). In this paper we present grating-based dark-field images of emphysematous vs. healthy lung tissue, where the strong dependence of the dark-field signal on mean alveolar size leads to improved diagnosis of emphysema in lung radiographs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Emphysema / diagnosis*
  • Female
  • Lasers*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Synchrotrons*
  • X-Rays