Research ArticleRESEARCH METHODS

FDISCO: Advanced solvent-based clearing method for imaging whole organs

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Science Advances  11 Jan 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 1, eaau8355
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aau8355

Abstract

Various optical clearing methods have emerged as powerful tools for deep biological imaging. Organic solvent–based clearing methods, such as three-dimensional imaging of solvent-cleared organs (3DISCO), present the advantages of high clearing efficiency and size reduction for panoptic imaging of large samples such as whole organs and even whole bodies. However, 3DISCO results in a rapid quenching of endogenous fluorescence, which has impeded its application. Here, we propose an advanced method named FDISCO to overcome this limitation. FDISCO can effectively preserve the fluorescence of various fluorescent probes and can achieve a long storage time of months while retaining potent clearing capability. We used FDISCO for high-resolution imaging and reconstruction of neuronal and vascular networks. Moreover, FDISCO is compatible with labeling by multiple viruses and enables fine visualization of neurons with weak fluorescence labeling in the whole brain. FDISCO represents an effective alternative to the three-dimensional mapping of whole organs and can be extensively used in biomedical studies.

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