Olympus has introduced the updated dotSlide digital virtual microscopy system, which scans entire slides at high resolution and fidelity, making them accessible and fully navigable anywhere on the globe. The three available models (dotSlide MD, manual version; dotSlide SL, fully automated version, with slide loader; and dotSlide TMA, with tissue microarray module) enable users to examine the virtual slide as if they were viewing the original on a microscope. The dotSlide is the perfect system for all aspects of pathology and research, meaning that users can review cases without being near a microscope. This also enables quicker second opinions and remote consults, as well as consistent training and discussion. The unique technology also ensures that the dotSlide range provides high throughput and high content capabilities for both pathology and research applications.
dotSlide in pathology
The components of all three dotSlide systems have been carefully selected to offer speed, precision and reliability whatever the requirements. All dotSlide models use the advanced Olympus BX51 microscope, which offers extraordinary optical performance. With the standard system, dotSlide MD, slides and meta-data are loaded manually and the virtual file created automatically based on the users preferences. With the dotSlide SL, slides are automatically loaded from the slide loader which holds up to 50 slides in 5 trays. The system always knows the exact position of each slide within the trays. A robotic arm places the slides onto the stage holder and the integrated barcode scanner ensures that any bar-coded meta-data are automatically loaded and linked with the resultant virtual image.
dotSlide in research
As well as being fluorescence compatible, the dotSlide can be used for tissue microarrays (TMAs) via a specific TMA model. TMAs consist of many small tissue cores with defined diameter that are fixed on a single slide. With TMAs, researchers have a powerful way of preparing and staining thousands of different tissue samples under the same conditions and analysing them at once. This has made them an increasingly important and efficient tool for molecular biological research, pharmaceutical drug discovery, gene expression and therapeutic antibody research. The dotSlide TMA model facilitates the acquisition and simple analysis of tissue microarrays. It documents each core separately, accurately recording its slide and core reference for traceability.
The dotSlide workstation and server system are equipped for optimal speed, security and performance and enable fully controllable remote access. Data and associated meta-data are saved in a bespoke data management system meaning that slides can be scanned in one location and reviewed almost instantaneously in another, anywhere on the globe by users either via a web browser. For more advanced functionality the specialised OlyVia software enables pathologists to review and comment on the virtual slide with the additional benefit of being able to add annotations, markers and files (including dictations), which are directly linked to the slide. This is possible even when they are away from their office and it also greatly improves the second opinion process, since neither the slide, nor the virtual file need to be sent to anyone else. Also, the software allows live discussions between any number of people, recording the meeting notes and any additional highlighting marks. The virtual slide file can also be exported for posting on the web. The Peltier cooled, 1376 x 1032 pixel dotSlide camera offers exactly what users in diagnostics, research, development and quality assurance need: high resolution, fast frame rates and very high sensitivity with an excellent signal-to-noise ratio, broad dynamic range and superior image quality. As a result the camera offers images rich in detail and contrast with extraordinary low background noise.