- 3.9k Downloads
The use of stereology for quantitative estimates of biological features is becoming commonplace in modern laboratories. Over the past decades, stereology has evolved to keep pace with the ever-changing field of neuroscience. It has moved from its early applications for studying the geologic composition of rocks to an invaluable method to detect both small- and large-scale changes in the complex central nervous system. Recent developments in technology have made the practice highly efficient and accurate while providing a strategy to remove assumptions and investigator biases that lead to inaccurate numerical estimations. This chapter focuses on the use of stereology in neuroscience and provides evidence that validates the results generated via stereological analysis. The reader is introduced to the many applications of stereology in the laboratory including the quantification of neuron populations, measurement of dendrite and axon lengths, analysis of surface area of non-symmetrical shapes, and overall connectivity in the brain. This chapter provides systematic examples for the performance of a stereological study and is presented in a manner allowing the use of this chapter as a manual directly translatable for the neuroscience laboratory.
KeywordsStereology Designed-based quantitation CNS neurons Fractionators Disector
- Glaser J, Greene G, Hendricks S (2007) Stereology for biological research with a focus on neuroscience. MBF Bioscience, Williston, VTGoogle Scholar
- MBF Bioscience (2011) Stereology information for the biological sciences. http://stereology.info. Accessed 21 Oct 2011
- Sundberg MD (1984) An Introduction to Stereolocial Analysis: Morphometric Techniques for Beginning Biologists, in Tested studies for laboratory teaching, S.E.A. Goldman CA, Hauta PL and Ketchum R, Editor 1984, Association for Biology Laboratory Education Memorial University of Newfoundland 51–72Google Scholar