MiCASA is a new method for quantifying cellular organization

Andrew Sornborger, Jie Li, Cullen Timmons, Floria Lupu, Jonathan Eggenschwiler, Yousuke Takahama, Nancy R. Manley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While many tools exist for identifying and quantifying individual cell types, few methods are available to assess the relationships between cell types in organs and tissues and how these relationships change during aging or disease states. We present a quantitative method for evaluating cellular organization, using the mouse thymus as a test organ. The thymus is the primary lymphoid organ responsible for generating T cells in vertebrates, and its proper structure and organization is essential for optimal function. Our method, Multitaper Circularly Averaged Spectral Analysis (MiCASA), identifies differences in the tissue-level organization with high sensitivity, including defining a novel type of phenotype by measuring variability as a specific parameter. MiCASA provides a novel and easily implemented quantitative tool for assessing cellular organization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number15619
JournalNature Communications
StatePublished - 30 May 2017
Externally publishedYes


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