Two-photon excitation of label-free tissue is of increasing interest, as advances have been made in endoscopic clinical application of multiphoton microscopy, such as second harmonic generation (SHG) scanning endoscopy used to monitor cervical collagen in mice1. We used C57BL mice as a model to investigate the progression of gastrointestinal structures, specifically glandular area and circularity. We used multiphoton microscopy to image ex-vivo label-free murine colon, focusing on the collagen structure changes over time, in mice ranging from 10 to 20 weeks of age. Series of images were acquired within the colonic and intestinal tissue at depth intervals of 20 microns from muscularis to the epithelium, up to a maximum depth of 180 microns. The imaging system comprised a two-photon laser tuned to 800nm wavelength excitation, and the SHG emission was filtered with a 400/40 bandpass filter before reaching the photomultiplier tube. Images were acquired at 15 frames per second, for 200 to 300 cumulative frames, with a field of view of 261um by 261um, and 40mW at sample. Image series were compared to histopathology H&E slides taken from adjacent locations. Quantitative metrics for determining differences between murine glandular structures were applied, specifically glandular area and circularity.
Keywords: colorectal cancer; histopathology; image analysis; label-free; mouse model; multiphoton.