Scanning Microscopy


A number of diseases is associated with changes in ion and/or water distribution at the tissue or cell level, and X-ray microanalysis can be used to investigate the relationship between the disease process and the changes in elemental distribution. For analysis of diffusible elements by X-ray microanalysis, the tissue has to be prepared by cryotechniques. To carry out studies of this kind in a clinical environment poses a number of problems. Some of these problems occur already before the tissue is frozen, others are caused by the practical and ethical limitations that are imposed on the freezing method itself when human tissue is to be used. The use of cryostat sections for analysis at the cellular level, and of in vitro systems and cell cultures in which sampling and cryopreparation can be separated in time and place can be useful alternatives.

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