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BNA 2023 | Advantages and disadvantages of imaging mass cytometry in Alzheimer’s disease studies

Alessia Caramello, PhD, Imperial College London, London, UK, comments on the advantages and challenges of using imaging mass cytometry (IMC) to study neuronal subpopulations in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). IMC combines the principles of flow cytometry and mass spectrometry, enabling the simultaneous detection of up to 35 targets, using metal-tagged antibodies. The tissue is then laser ablated 1μm at a time and processed by a mass spectrometer for analysis of isotope abundance, before being mapped back to the original coordinates. Dr Caramello highlights several advantages of this technique, including its highly multiplexed nature which allows a variety of cell types to be analyzed concurrently, with minimal crosstalk between the channels. While imaging mass cytometry provides spatial data for many parameters, some disadvantages include its relatively low resolution and loss of three-dimensionality. This interview took place at The BNA2023 International Festival of Neuroscience in Brighton, UK.

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