Whole Slide Imaging and Its Applications to Histopathological Studies of Liver Disorders

Rossana C. N. Melo, Maximilian W. D. Raas, Cinthia Palazzi, Vitor H. Neves, Kássia K. Malta, Thiago P. Silva
2020 Frontiers in Medicine  
Histological analysis of hepatic tissue specimens is essential for evaluating the pathology of several liver disorders such as chronic liver diseases, hepatocellular carcinomas, liver steatosis, and infectious liver diseases. Manual examination of histological slides on the microscope is a classically used method to study these disorders. However, it is considered time-consuming, limited, and associated with intra- and inter-observer variability. Emerging technologies such as whole slide
more » ... (WSI), also termed virtual microscopy, have increasingly been used to improve the assessment of histological features with applications in both clinical and research laboratories. WSI enables the acquisition of the tissue morphology/pathology from glass slides and translates it into a digital form comparable to a conventional microscope, but with several advantages such as easy image accessibility and storage, portability, sharing, annotation, qualitative and quantitative image analysis, and use for educational purposes. WSI-generated images simultaneously provide high resolution and a wide field of observation that can cover the entire section, extending any single field of view. In this review, we summarize current knowledge on the application of WSI to histopathological analyses of liver disorders as well as to understand liver biology. We address how WSI may improve the assessment and quantification of multiple histological parameters in the liver, and help diagnose several hepatic conditions with important clinical implications. The WSI technical limitations are also discussed.
doi:10.3389/fmed.2019.00310 pmid:31970160 pmcid:PMC6960181 fatcat:j3qxq6ke5fbn3ba2n3ejbc6z3m