Algorithm to estimate cell biovolume using image analyzed microscopy

Cytometry. 1989 Sep;10(5):551-7. doi: 10.1002/cyto.990100510.


This paper describes an algorithm for calculating the biovolume of cells with simple shapes, such as bacteria, flagellates, and simple ciliates, from a 2-dimensional digital image. The method can be adapted to any image analysis system which allows access to the binary cell image--(i.e., the pixels, or (x,y) points, composing the cell. The cell image is rotated to a standard orientation (horizontal), and a solid of revolution is calculated by digital integration. Verification and a critical assessment of the method are presented. The algorithm accounts for irregularities in cell shape that conventional methods based on length, width, and geometrical formulas do not.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms*
  • Bacteria / cytology
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted*
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence / methods*
  • Prokaryotic Cells / cytology