In vivo CARS microscopy reveals vitamin A distribution in the liver
in: Journal of Biophotonics (2021)
Here we present a microscope setup for coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) imaging, devised to specifically address the challenges of in vivo experiments. We exemplify its capabilities by demonstrating howCARS microscopy can be used to identify vitaminA(VA) accumulations in the liver of a living mouse, marking the position of hepatic stellate cells (HSCs). HSCs are the main source of extracellular matrix protein after hepatic injury and are therefore the main target of novel nanomedical strategies in the development of a treatment for liver fibrosis. Their role in the VA metabolism makes them an ideal target for a CARS-based approach as they store most of the body’s VA, a class of compounds sharing a retinyl group as a structural motive, a moiety that is well known for its exceptionally high Raman cross section of the C=C stretching vibration of the conjugated backbone.