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Investigation of insect morphology by MRI: Assessment of spatial and temporal resolution

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Wecker,  Stefan
In-vivo-NMR, Research Groups, Max Planck Institute for Metabolism Research, Managing Director: Jens Brüning, Max Planck Society;

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Hoehn,  Mathias
In-vivo-NMR, Research Groups, Max Planck Institute for Metabolism Research, Managing Director: Jens Brüning, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Wecker, S., Hornschemeyer, T., & Hoehn, M. (2002). Investigation of insect morphology by MRI: Assessment of spatial and temporal resolution. Magnetic Resonance Imaging, 20(1), 105-111.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0026-D61D-4
Abstract
Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved.
Classically, the investigation of the internal morphology of insects relies on histologic methods, e.g., the preparation of thin tissue sections. However, the preparation of serial sections is time consuming and means the irreversible loss of the animal. In the present investigation, we have analyzed the potential of NMR imaging as a tool for the morphologic classification of insects with sufficient spatial resolution. With a 512 matrix, 15 mm FOV, 200 mum slice thickness, images with an in-plane spatial resolution of 30 mum are obtained with a signal-to-noise ratio of 70. These conditions require only seven averages, resulting in an experimental time of only 50 min. Such image quality already permits the differentiation of fine structural and morphologic details such as e.g., intestinal tracts and copulation organ in a beetle. Also, wing controlling dorsal muscle groups as well as leg structures and joints are clearly distinguishable. We conclude that the spatial resolution and contrast condition of MR imaging are quite promising for the new approach of zoological insect classification using NMR imaging. Further principally available technical enhancement of sensitivity and spatial resolution will provide an attractive alternative to invasive techniques for the classification of, sometimes, rare and precious insect specimen.