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Label-free morphometry of retinal nerve fiber bundles by second-harmonic-generation microscopy

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Abstract

We present an application of second-harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy for label-free visualization and quantification of the morphology of nerve fibers in the retina. We show that SHG arises from the retinal nerve fiber layer and that it is specifically associated with uniformly oriented microtubules in the axons. The utility of axonal SHG is demonstrated for imaging the neuroanatomy of fresh ex vivo retina, and the three-dimensional structure of the axons of retinal ganglion cells is quantitatively analyzed.

©2012 Optical Society of America

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