Learning about reproduction and development through functional optical imaging


Irina V. Larina, Ph.D.


Friday, September 29, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm


SEC 204


Understanding the dynamic process of reproduction is essential to advance the understanding and improve the management of reproductive disorders, such as infertility and ectopic pregnancy. However, the majority of what we know about the dynamics of these events is assumed based on histological analysis of extracted organs, low-resolution visualizations, and extrapolation of studies in invertebrate animal models. To address this lack of knowledge, we developed a set of OCT-based imaging methods for in vivo structural, dynamic and functional visualization of features of the mouse reproductive tract, cilia function and sperm activity, which previously have not been accessible. The micro-scale spatial resolution, millimeter-level imaging depth, large transverse field of view, high temporal resolving ability, functional capacity and compatibility with live imaging make this approach applicable for variety of reproductive and developmental studies. These approaches reveal puzzling observations, which might contribute to uncovering the mechanisms of mammalian reproduction.