The diagnostic utility of a conventional transillumination microscope, the most common imaging modality in clinical use today, is limited by the microscope’s resolution. It is, however, possible to achieve lateral resolution well beyond the classical limit by using laterally structured illumination in a wide-field, nonconfocal microscope. In this method, the spatially modulated illumination (SMI) makes high-resolution information that is normally inaccessible visible in the observed image. Previously presented SMI microscopy systems operated in epifluorescence mode. We describe the design, construction, and testing of a novel transillumination SMI microscope. As transillumination is necessary for most medical applications, such as histopathologic evaluation of biopsy tissue and chromosomal analysis, such a system should have a significant diagnostic effect.
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