Rapid 3-D Delineation of Cell Nuclei for High-Content Screening Platforms [Diagnostic/Imaging]

Tech ID: ger000864



This invention addresses the problem of segmentation of nuclei and quantification of respective nuclear signals in digitized preparations of human specimens imaged in three dimensions (3-D). The software is based on a new method to delineate nuclei by means of 3-D radial symmetries and has been tested on high-resolution image data of human cancer cells treated by drugs. This can become a useful tool for drug screening that utilizes imaging to investigate macro and microscopic changes induced by drugs in single cells.


Technology Description 

• The nuclei detection performance of the new method, 3D-RSD, was evaluated by means of manually generated ground truth from 2351 nuclei (27 confocal stacks).

• The method was validated with very good overall segmentation performance compared to two state-of-the-art nuclei segmentation methods. It also offers good processing speed and is less sensitive to staining patterns.



High-content screening (HCS) platform vendors often produce image analysis software but limitations of cell confluency, complexity of nuclear staining as well as poor contrast can result in unreliable 3-D image processing. The software described in this invention provides more reliable image analysis. Furthermore, the existing commercial software products are often specific to the platform. This invention can provide a standardized single analysis platform where a lab or facility has multiple instruments.



• The algorithm could be built into an existing drug screening platform utilizing images from a confocal microscope.

• Faster and more reliable screening can reduce cost and increase efficiency for drug screening and development. Morphological changes in single cells can indicate effects of drug action.


Intellectual Property


PCT/US2016/029023 nationalized in US and EU.



Gertych et al. Rapid 3-D delineation of cell nuclei for high-content screening platforms. Comput Biol Med. 2015, pii: S0010-4825(15)00143-2. [LINK]


Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Wenyue Du
Senior Associate - IP Management & Licensing
Arkadiusz Gertych
Beatrice Knudsen
Drug Discovery/Screening