Three-dimensional imaging of the developing mouse female reproductive organs with optical coherence tomography

Jason C. Burton, Shang Wang, Richard R. Behringer, Irina V. Larina

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


Infertility is a known major health concern and is estimated to impact ∼15% of couples in the U.S. The majority of failed pregnancies occur before or during implantation of the fertilized embryo into the uterus. Understanding the mechanisms regulating development by studying mouse reproductive organs could significantly contribute to an improved understanding of normal development of reproductive organs and developmental causes of infertility in humans. Towards this goal, we report a three-dimensional (3D) imaging study of the developing mouse reproductive organs (ovary, oviduct, and uterus) using optical coherence tomography (OCT). In our study, OCT was used for 3D imaging of reproductive organs without exogenous contrast agents and provides micro-scale spatial resolution. Experiments were conducted in vitro on mouse reproductive organs ranging from the embryonic day 14.5 to adult stages. Structural features of the ovary, oviduct, and uterus are presented. Additionally, a comparison with traditional histological analysis is illustrated. These results provide a basis for a wide range of infertility studies in mouse models. Through integration with traditional genetic and molecular biology approaches, this imaging method can improve understanding of ovary, oviduct, and uterus development and function, serving to further contribute to our understanding of fertility and infertility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOptical Methods in Developmental Biology IV
EditorsMichael A. Choma, Scott E. Fraser, Andrew M. Rollins
ISBN (Electronic)9781628419504
StatePublished - 2016
EventOptical Methods in Developmental Biology IV - San Francisco, United States
Duration: Feb 13 2016Feb 14 2016

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


OtherOptical Methods in Developmental Biology IV
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco


  • 3D imaging
  • development
  • infertility
  • longitudinal study
  • mouse
  • optical coherence tomography
  • ovary
  • oviduct
  • reproductive biology
  • uterus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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