Investigation of cholesterol, bilirubin, and protein distribution in human gallstones by color cathodoluminescence scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy.
Loginov AS. Chebanov SM. Petrakov AV. Saparin GV. Obyden SK. Ivannikov PV.
Laboratory of Electron Microscopy, Central Research Institute of Gastroenterology, Moscow, Russia.
The application of color cathodoluminescent scanning electron microscopy (CCL-SEM) for qualitative luminescence analysis of cholesterol, bilirubin, and protein in human gallastones was demonstrated. Images of these deposits (cholesterol, bilirubin, and protein) were formed in real colors (blue-cholesterol, red, orange-bilirubin, yellow, green-protein) in accordance with the cathodoluminescent spectrum for each control material. The other method described for transmission electron microscopy (TEM) of ultrathin sections provides more detailed characterization of the ultrastructure of cholesterol-containing regions and their spatial interrelations with bilirubin-containing regions. Using CCL-SEM combined with TEM permits the receipt of more complete information about the chemical composition and ultrastructure of gallstones and may lead to more effective understanding of the pathogenesis of cholesterol cholelithiasis.