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Michael A. Mooney, Aqib H. Zehri, Joseph F. Georges and Peter Nakaji

Laser scanning confocal endomicroscopy (LSCE) is an emerging technology for examining brain neoplasms in vivo. While great advances have been made in macroscopic fluorescence in recent years, the ability to perform confocal microscopy in vivo expands the potential of fluorescent tumor labeling, can improve intraoperative tissue diagnosis, and provides real-time guidance for tumor resection intraoperatively. In this review, the authors highlight the technical aspects of confocal endomicroscopy and fluorophores relevant to the neurosurgeon, provide a comprehensive summary of LSCE in animal and human neurosurgical studies to date, and discuss the future directions and potential for LSCE in neurosurgery.

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Joseph Georges, Aqib Zehri, Elizabeth Carlson, Joshua Nichols, Michael A. Mooney, Nikolay L. Martirosyan, Layla Ghaffari, M. Yashar S. Kalani, Jennifer Eschbacher, Burt Feuerstein, Trent Anderson, Mark C. Preul, Kendall Van Keuren-Jensen and Peter Nakaji

Glioblastoma is the most common primary brain tumor with a median 12- to 15-month patient survival. Improving patient survival involves better understanding the biological mechanisms of glioblastoma tumorigenesis and seeking targeted molecular therapies. Central to furthering these advances is the collection and storage of surgical biopsies (biobanking) for research. This paper addresses an imaging modality, confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM), for safely screening glioblastoma biopsy samples prior to biobanking to increase the quality of tissue provided for research and clinical trials. These data indicate that CRM can immediately identify cellularity of tissue biopsies from animal models of glioblastoma. When screening fresh human biopsy samples, CRM can differentiate a cellular glioblastoma biopsy from a necrotic biopsy without altering DNA, RNA, or protein expression of sampled tissue. These data illustrate CRM's potential for rapidly and safely screening clinical biopsy samples prior to biobanking, which demonstrates its potential as an effective screening technique that can improve the quality of tissue biobanked for patients with glioblastoma.