Validation of a New Semi-Automated Technique to Evaluate Muscle Capillarization
The method of capillary domains has often been used to study capillarization of skeletal and heart muscle. However, the conventional data processing method using a digitizing tablet is an arduous and time-consuming task. Here we compare a new semi-automated capillary domain data collection and analysis in muscle tissue with the standard capillary domain method. The capillary density (1481 ± 59 vs. 1447 ± 54 caps mm−2; R2:0.99; P < 0.01) and heterogeneity of capillary spacing (0.085 ± 0.002 vs. 0.085 ± 0.002; R2:0.95; P < 0.01) were similar in both methods. The fiber cross-sectional area correlated well between the methods (R2:0.84; P < 0.01) and did not differ significantly (~8 % larger in the old than new method at P = 0.08). The latter was likely due to differences in outlining the contours between the two methods. In conclusion, the semi-automated method gives quantitatively and qualitatively similar data as the conventional method and saves a considerable amount of time.
KeywordsValidation Capillarization Muscle Capillary density Fiber cross-sectional area
This research was funded by the European Commission through MOVE-AGE, an Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate program (2011–2015). The Matlab codes are available from the authors on request.