Seeing cilia: Imaging modalities for ciliary motion and clinical connections

Academic Article


  • The respiratory tract is lined with multiciliated epithelial cells that function to move mucus and trapped particles via the mucociliary transport apparatus. Genetic and acquired ciliopathies result in diminished mucociliary clearance, contributing to disease pathogenesis. Recent innovations in imaging technology have advanced our understanding of ciliary motion in health and disease states. Application of imaging modalities including transmission electron microscopy, high-speed video microscopy, and micron-optical coherence tomography could improve diagnostics and be applied for precision medicine. In this review, we provide an overview of ciliary motion, imaging modalities, and ciliopathic diseases of the respiratory system including primary ciliary dyskinesia, cystic fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Peabody JE; Shei RJ; Bermingham BM; Phillips SE; Turner B; Rowe SM; Solomon GM
  • Start Page

  • L909
  • End Page

  • L921
  • Volume

  • 314
  • Issue

  • 6