Spectral imaging methods are attracting increased interest from researchers and practitioners in basic science, pre-clinical and clinical arenas. A combination of better labeling reagents and better optics creates opportunities to detect and measure multiple parameters at the molecular and cellular level. These tools can provide valuable insights into the basic mechanisms of life, and yield diagnostic and prognostic information for clinical applications. There are many multispectral technologies available, each with its own advantages and limitations. This chapter will present an overview of the rationale for spectral imaging, and discuss the hardware, software and sample labeling strategies that can optimize its usefulness in clinical settings.
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