High speed intravital microscopy has emerged as an essential tool for studying cellular dynamics in live tissue. A limitation of this technique, however, is that the timescale that a sample can be continuously imaged is limited by practical considerations to several hours. Long term observation of live tissue is of great interest for a variety of research areas. We present methods for observing long term cellular dynamics in live tissue based on three-dimensional registration of time-lapse intravital microscopy images. For these experiments we utilized a custom multimodal microscope that allows simultaneous and co-registered acquisition of optical coherence (OCM) and multiphoton (MPM) microscopy images. OCM allows the structure of a sample to be visualized based on backscattered light while MPM excited fluorescence allows individual cells and cell function to be visualized. The OCM images of tissue structure are used to register data sets taken at different time points. The transformations of the OCM images are applied to MPM images to determine the migration of cell populations. This method of image registration is applied to in vivo tracking of bone-marrow derived GFP-labeled stem cells in mouse skin following bone marrow transplants from GFP donors into species-matched wildtype hosts. The use of three-dimensional image registration of time-lapse microscopy images enables tracking these cells after local cutaneous injury, and for investigating the role of skin stem cells in wound healing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationImaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues IX
StatePublished - 2011
EventImaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues IX - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 22 2011Jan 25 2011

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


OtherImaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues IX
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA


  • image registration
  • Intravital microscopy
  • multiphoton microscopy
  • optical coherence microscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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