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      Quantifying Branching Density in Rat Mammary Gland Whole-mounts Using the Sholl Analysis Method

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          Abstract

          An increasing number of studies are utilizing the rodent mammary gland as an endpoint for assessing the developmental toxicity of a chemical exposure. The effects these exposures have on mammary gland development are typically evaluated using either basic dimensional measurements or by scoring morphological characteristics. However, the broad range of methods for interpreting developmental changes could lead to inconsistent translations across laboratories. A common method of assessment is needed so that proper interpretations can be formed from data being compared across studies. The present study describes the application of the Sholl analysis method to quantify mammary gland branching characteristics. The Sholl method was originally developed for use in quantifying neuronal dendritic patterns. By using ImageJ, an open-source image analysis software package, and a plugin developed for this analysis, the mammary gland branching density and the complexity of a mammary gland from a peripubertal female rat were determined. The methods described here will enable the use of the Sholl analysis as an effective tool for quantifying an important characteristic of mammary gland development.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          J Vis Exp
          J Vis Exp
          JoVE
          Journal of Visualized Experiments : JoVE
          MyJove Corporation
          1940-087X
          2017
          12 July 2017
          : 125
          Affiliations
          1National Toxicology Program Laboratory, Division of the National Toxicology Program, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
          Author notes

          Correspondence to: Suzanne E. Fenton at Suzanne.fenton@ 123456nih.gov

          Article
          PMC5612270 PMC5612270 5612270 55789
          10.3791/55789
          5612270
          28745626
          Copyright © 2017, Journal of Visualized Experiments
          Categories
          Developmental Biology

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