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Sample records for living cells challenges

  1. Progress and challenges for chemical probing of RNA structure inside living cells

    PubMed Central

    Kubota, Miles; Tran, Catherine; Spitale, Robert C

    2016-01-01

    Proper gene expression is essential for the survival of every cell. Once thought to be a passive transporter of genetic information, RNA has recently emerged as a key player in nearly every pathway in the cell. A full description of its structure is critical to understanding RNA function. Decades of research have focused on utilizing chemical tools to interrogate the structures of RNAs, with recent focus shifting to performing experiments inside living cells. This Review will detail the design and utility of chemical reagents used in RNA structure probing. We also outline how these reagents have been used to gain a deeper understanding of RNA structure in vivo. We review the recent merger of chemical probing with deep sequencing. Finally, we outline some of the hurdles that remain in fully characterizing the structure of RNA inside living cells, and how chemical biology can uniquely tackle such challenges. PMID:26575240

  2. Fluorescence Live Cell Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Ettinger, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Fluorescence microscopy of live cells has become an integral part of modern cell biology. Fluorescent protein tags, live cell dyes, and other methods to fluorescently label proteins of interest provide a range of tools to investigate virtually any cellular process under the microscope. The two main experimental challenges in collecting meaningful live cell microscopy data are to minimize photodamage while retaining a useful signal-to-noise ratio, and to provide a suitable environment for cells or tissues to replicate physiological cell dynamics. This chapter aims to give a general overview on microscope design choices critical for fluorescence live cell imaging that apply to most fluorescence microscopy modalities, and on environmental control with a focus on mammalian tissue culture cells. In addition, we provide guidance on how to design and evaluate fluorescent protein constructs by spinning disk confocal microscopy. PMID:24974023

  3. Live endothelial cells imaged by Scanning Near-field Optical Microscopy (SNOM): capabilities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Bulat, Katarzyna; Rygula, Anna; Szafraniec, Ewelina; Ozaki, Yukihiro; Baranska, Malgorzata

    2016-08-22

    The scanning near-field optical microscopy (SNOM) shows a potential to study details of biological samples, since it provides the optical images of objects with nanometric spatial resolution (50-200 nm) and the topographic information at the same time. The goal of this work is to demonstrate the capabilities of SNOM in transmission configuration to study human endothelial cells and their morphological changes, sometimes very subtle, upon inflammation. Various sample preparations were tested for SNOM measurements and promising results are collected to show: 1) the influence of α tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α) on EA.hy 926 cells (measurements of the fixed cells); 2) high resolution images of various endothelial cell lines, i.e. EA.hy 926 and HLMVEC (investigations of the fixed cells in buffer environment); 3) imaging of live endothelial cells in physiological buffers. The study demonstrate complementarity of the SNOM measurements performed in air and in liquid environments, on fixed as well as on living cells. Furthermore, it is proved that the SNOM is a very useful method for analysis of cellular morphology and topography. Changes in the cell shape and nucleus size, which are the symptoms of inflammatory reaction, were noticed in TNF-α activated EA.hy 926 cells. The cellular structures of submicron size were observed in high resolution optical images of cells from EA.hy 926 and HLMVEC lines.

  4. Living-cell microarrays.

    PubMed

    Yarmush, Martin L; King, Kevin R

    2009-01-01

    Living cells are remarkably complex. To unravel this complexity, living-cell assays have been developed that allow delivery of experimental stimuli and measurement of the resulting cellular responses. High-throughput adaptations of these assays, known as living-cell microarrays, which are based on microtiter plates, high-density spotting, microfabrication, and microfluidics technologies, are being developed for two general applications: (a) to screen large-scale chemical and genomic libraries and (b) to systematically investigate the local cellular microenvironment. These emerging experimental platforms offer exciting opportunities to rapidly identify genetic determinants of disease, to discover modulators of cellular function, and to probe the complex and dynamic relationships between cells and their local environment.

  5. Live-cell imaging

    PubMed Central

    Cole, Richard

    2014-01-01

    It would be hard to argue that live-cell imaging has not changed our view of biology. The past 10 years have seen an explosion of interest in imaging cellular processes, down to the molecular level. There are now many advanced techniques being applied to live cell imaging. However, cellular health is often under appreciated. For many researchers, if the cell at the end of the experiment has not gone into apoptosis or is blebbed beyond recognition, than all is well. This is simply incorrect. There are many factors that need to be considered when performing live-cell imaging in order to maintain cellular health such as: imaging modality, media, temperature, humidity, PH, osmolality, and photon dose. The wavelength of illuminating light, and the total photon dose that the cells are exposed to, comprise two of the most important and controllable parameters of live-cell imaging. The lowest photon dose that achieves a measureable metric for the experimental question should be used, not the dose that produces cover photo quality images. This is paramount to ensure that the cellular processes being investigated are in their in vitro state and not shifted to an alternate pathway due to environmental stress. The timing of the mitosis is an ideal canary in the gold mine, in that any stress induced from the imaging will result in the increased length of mitosis, thus providing a control model for the current imagining conditions. PMID:25482523

  6. Microencapsulation Of Living Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, Manchium; Kendall, James M.; Wang, Taylor G.

    1989-01-01

    In experimental technique, living cells and other biological materials encapsulated within submillimeter-diameter liquid-filled spheres. Sphere material biocompatible, tough, and compliant. Semipermeable, permitting relatively small molecules to move into and out of sphere core but preventing passage of large molecules. New technique promises to make such spherical capsules at high rates and in uniform, controllable sizes. Capsules injected into patient through ordinary hypodermic needle. Promising application for technique in treatment of diabetes. Also used to encapsulate pituitary cells and thyroid hormone adrenocortical cells for treatment of other hormonal disorders, to encapsulate other secreting cells for transplantation, and to package variety of pharmaceutical products and agricultural chemicals for controlled release.

  7. Freezing of living cells

    SciTech Connect

    Mazur, P.

    1985-01-01

    It can be calculated that a living cell will survive more than 5000 years at -196/sup 0/C. This ability to essentially stop biological time has important implications in medicine and agriculture, and in biological research. In medicine the chief implications are in the banking of transplantable tissues and organs and in in vitro fertilization. In agriculture the applications stem in part from the role of frozen embryos in amplifying the number of calves produced by high quanlity cows. The problem is how can cells survive both the cooling to such very low temperatures and the return to normal temperatures. The answers involve fundamental characteristics of cells such as the permeability of their surface membranes to water and solutes. These characteristics determine whether or not cells undergo lethal internal ice formation and other response during freezing and thawing. 27 refs., 12 figs.

  8. Living with Sickle Cell Disease

    MedlinePlus

    ... from the NHLBI on Twitter. Living With Sickle Cell Disease If you or your child has sickle ... NEXT >> Featured Video Living With and Managing Sickle Cell Disease (Nicholas) 09/02/2011 In this video— ...

  9. Astrocytes going live: advances and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Nimmerjahn, Axel

    2009-01-01

    Astrocytes are one of the most numerous cell types in the CNS. They have emerged as sophisticated cells participating in a large and diverse variety of functions vital for normal brain development, adult physiology and pathology. Recent in vivo studies have provided exciting new insight into astrocyte physiology in the intact healthy brain. This review will summarize some of their most intriguing findings, discuss some of their implications, and look ahead at some of the challenges we face in studying astrocyte function in vivo. PMID:19204050

  10. Very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) represent a real challenge in stem cell biology: recent pros and cons in the midst of a lively debate.

    PubMed

    Ratajczak, M Z; Zuba-Surma, E; Wojakowski, W; Suszynska, M; Mierzejewska, K; Liu, R; Ratajczak, J; Shin, D M; Kucia, M

    2014-03-01

    The concept that adult tissue, including bone marrow (BM), contains early-development cells with broader differentiation potential has again been recently challenged. In response, we would like to review the accumulated evidence from several independent laboratories that adult tissues, including BM, harbor a population of very rare stem cells that may cross germ layers in their differentiation potential. Thus, the BM stem cell compartment hierarchy needs to be revisited. These dormant, early-development cells that our group described as very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) most likely overlap with similar populations of stem cells that have been identified in adult tissues by other investigators as the result of various experimental strategies and have been given various names. As reported, murine VSELs have some pluripotent stem cell characteristics. Moreover, they display several epiblast/germline markers that suggest their embryonic origin and developmental deposition in adult BM. Moreover, at the molecular level, changes in expression of parentally imprinted genes (for example, Igf2-H19) and resistance to insulin/insulin-like growth factor signaling (IIS) regulates their quiescent state in adult tissues. In several emergency situations related to organ damage, VSELs can be activated and mobilized into peripheral blood, and in appropriate animal models they contribute to tissue organ/regeneration. Interestingly, their number correlates with lifespan in mice, and they may also be involved in some malignancies. VSELs have been successfully isolated in several laboratories; however, some investigators experience problems with their isolation.

  11. Very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) represent a real challenge in stem cell biology: recent pros and cons in the midst of a lively debate

    PubMed Central

    Ratajczak, M Z; Zuba-Surma, E; Wojakowski, W; Suszynska, M; Mierzejewska, K; Liu, R; Ratajczak, J; Shin, D M; Kucia, M

    2014-01-01

    The concept that adult tissue, including bone marrow (BM), contains early-development cells with broader differentiation potential has again been recently challenged. In response, we would like to review the accumulated evidence from several independent laboratories that adult tissues, including BM, harbor a population of very rare stem cells that may cross germ layers in their differentiation potential. Thus, the BM stem cell compartment hierarchy needs to be revisited. These dormant, early-development cells that our group described as very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) most likely overlap with similar populations of stem cells that have been identified in adult tissues by other investigators as the result of various experimental strategies and have been given various names. As reported, murine VSELs have some pluripotent stem cell characteristics. Moreover, they display several epiblast/germline markers that suggest their embryonic origin and developmental deposition in adult BM. Moreover, at the molecular level, changes in expression of parentally imprinted genes (for example, Igf2–H19) and resistance to insulin/insulin-like growth factor signaling (IIS) regulates their quiescent state in adult tissues. In several emergency situations related to organ damage, VSELs can be activated and mobilized into peripheral blood, and in appropriate animal models they contribute to tissue organ/regeneration. Interestingly, their number correlates with lifespan in mice, and they may also be involved in some malignancies. VSELs have been successfully isolated in several laboratories; however, some investigators experience problems with their isolation. PMID:24018851

  12. Super-resolution imaging in live cells.

    PubMed

    Cox, Susan

    2015-05-01

    Over the last twenty years super-resolution fluorescence microscopy has gone from proof-of-concept experiments to commercial systems being available in many labs, improving the resolution achievable by up to a factor of 10 or more. There are three major approaches to super-resolution, stimulated emission depletion microscopy, structured illumination microscopy, and localisation microscopy, which have all produced stunning images of cellular structures. A major current challenge is optimising performance of each technique so that the same sort of data can be routinely taken in live cells. There are several major challenges, particularly phototoxicity and the speed with which images of whole cells, or groups of cells, can be acquired. In this review we discuss the various approaches which can be successfully used in live cells, the tradeoffs in resolution, speed, and ease of implementation which one must make for each approach, and the quality of results that one might expect from each technique.

  13. Optical nanoscopy of a living cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahluwalia, Balpreet S.; Wolfson, Deanna L.; Chuang, Frank Y. S.; Huser, Thomas

    2014-08-01

    Optical nanoscopy allows to study biological and functional processes of sub-cellular organelles. In structured illumination microscopy (SIM) the sample is illuminated with a grid-like interference pattern to encode higher spatial frequency information into observable Moiré patterns. By acquiring multiple images and a computation trick a superresolved image is obtained. SIM provides resolution enhancement of 2X in each axis as compared to conventional microscopes. For a visible light, SIM provides an optical resolution of 100 nm. The challenges associated with optical nanoscopy of a living cell are photo-toxicity, special dye requirements and artifacts due to cell movement. SIM works with conventional dyes and is a wide-field technique making it suitable for imaging living cells. In this work, we will discuss the opportunities and challenges of imaging living cells using SIM. Two applications of optical nanoscopy of living cells will be discussed; a) imaging of mitochondria in a keratinocyte cell and Optical microscopy based on fluorescence has emerged as a vital tool in modern bio-medical imaging and diagnosis. Super-resolution bio-imaging allows gathering information from sub-cellular organelles. In structured illumination microscopy (SIM) the sample is illuminated with a grid-like interference patterns to encode higher spatial frequencies information into observable images (Moiré fringes). A super-resolved image is then decoded using computational trick. In this work, we used SIM to acquired super-resolved optical images of mitochondria from a live keratinocyte cell (see Fig 1). SIM provides resolution enhancement of 2X in each axis and contrast enhancement of 8X on a projected image. Time-lapsed imaging was used to study the dynamics of mitochondria in a live cell.

  14. Electronic Interfacing with Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleming, James T.

    The direct interfacing of living cells with inorganic electronic materials, components or systems has led to the development of two broad categories of devices that can (1) transduce biochemical signals generated by biological components into electrical signals and (2) transduce electronically generated signals into biochemical signals. The first category of devices permits the monitoring of living cells, the second, enables control of cellular processes. This review will survey this exciting area with emphasis on the fundamental issues and obstacles faced by researchers. Devices and applications that use both prokaryotic (microbial) and eukaryotic (mammalian) cells will be covered. Individual devices described include microbial biofuel cells that produce electricity, bioelectrical reactors that enable electronic control of cellular metabolism, living cell biosensors for the detection of chemicals and devices that permit monitoring and control of mammalian physiology.

  15. Living Well with Sickle Cell Disease

    MedlinePlus

    ... Information For... Media Policy Makers Living Well with Sickle Cell Disease Language: English Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir People with sickle cell disease can live full lives and enjoy most ...

  16. Information theory in living systems, methods, applications, and challenges.

    PubMed

    Gatenby, Robert A; Frieden, B Roy

    2007-02-01

    Living systems are distinguished in nature by their ability to maintain stable, ordered states far from equilibrium. This is despite constant buffeting by thermodynamic forces that, if unopposed, will inevitably increase disorder. Cells maintain a steep transmembrane entropy gradient by continuous application of information that permits cellular components to carry out highly specific tasks that import energy and export entropy. Thus, the study of information storage, flow and utilization is critical for understanding first principles that govern the dynamics of life. Initial biological applications of information theory (IT) used Shannon's methods to measure the information content in strings of monomers such as genes, RNA, and proteins. Recent work has used bioinformatic and dynamical systems to provide remarkable insights into the topology and dynamics of intracellular information networks. Novel applications of Fisher-, Shannon-, and Kullback-Leibler informations are promoting increased understanding of the mechanisms by which genetic information is converted to work and order. Insights into evolution may be gained by analysis of the the fitness contributions from specific segments of genetic information as well as the optimization process in which the fitness are constrained by the substrate cost for its storage and utilization. Recent IT applications have recognized the possible role of nontraditional information storage structures including lipids and ion gradients as well as information transmission by molecular flux across cell membranes. Many fascinating challenges remain, including defining the intercellular information dynamics of multicellular organisms and the role of disordered information storage and flow in disease.

  17. Thermodynamics of protein destabilization in live cells.

    PubMed

    Danielsson, Jens; Mu, Xin; Lang, Lisa; Wang, Huabing; Binolfi, Andres; Theillet, François-Xavier; Bekei, Beata; Logan, Derek T; Selenko, Philipp; Wennerström, Håkan; Oliveberg, Mikael

    2015-10-06

    Although protein folding and stability have been well explored under simplified conditions in vitro, it is yet unclear how these basic self-organization events are modulated by the crowded interior of live cells. To find out, we use here in-cell NMR to follow at atomic resolution the thermal unfolding of a β-barrel protein inside mammalian and bacterial cells. Challenging the view from in vitro crowding effects, we find that the cells destabilize the protein at 37 °C but with a conspicuous twist: While the melting temperature goes down the cold unfolding moves into the physiological regime, coupled to an augmented heat-capacity change. The effect seems induced by transient, sequence-specific, interactions with the cellular components, acting preferentially on the unfolded ensemble. This points to a model where the in vivo influence on protein behavior is case specific, determined by the individual protein's interplay with the functionally optimized "interaction landscape" of the cellular interior.

  18. Living the Questions: Rilke's Challenge to Our Quest for Certainty

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gordon, Mordechai

    2007-01-01

    In this essay, Mordechai Gordon explores the significance of Rilke's challenge to "live the questions" and embrace uncertainty with respect to the quest for certainty in education. The quest for certainty in education refers to our desire to gain a sense of psychological security and more control over a field that is fundamentally indeterminate.…

  19. ``Backpack'' Functionalized Living Immune Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swiston, Albert; Um, Soong Ho; Irvine, Darrell; Cohen, Robert; Rubner, Michael

    2009-03-01

    We demonstrate that functional polymeric ``backpacks'' built from polyelectrolyte multilayers (PEMs) can be attached to a fraction of the surface area of living, individual lymphocytes. Backpacks containing fluorescent polymers, superparamagnetic nanoparticles, and commercially available quantum dots have been attached to B and T-cells, which may be spatially manipulated using a magnetic field. Since the backpack does not occlude the entire cellular surface from the environment, this technique allows functional synthetic payloads to be attached to a cell that is free to perform its native functions, thereby synergistically utilizing both biological and synthetic functionalities. For instance, we have shown that backpack-modified T-cells are able to migrate on surfaces for several hours following backpack attachment. Possible payloads within the PEM backpack include drugs, vaccine antigens, thermally responsive polymers, nanoparticles, and imaging agents. We will discuss how this approach has broad potential for applications in bioimaging, single-cell functionalization, immune system and tissue engineering, and cell-based therapeutics where cell-environment interactions are critical.

  20. The challenges faced by living stock collections in the USA

    PubMed Central

    McCluskey, Kevin; Boundy-Mills, Kyria; Dye, Greg; Ehmke, Erin; Gunnell, Gregg F; Kiaris, Hippokratis; Polihronakis Richmond, Maxi; Yoder, Anne D; Zeigler, Daniel R; Zehr, Sarah; Grotewold, Erich

    2017-01-01

    Many discoveries in the life sciences have been made using material from living stock collections. These collections provide a uniform and stable supply of living organisms and related materials that enhance the reproducibility of research and minimize the need for repetitive calibration. While collections differ in many ways, they all require expertise in maintaining living organisms and good logistical systems for keeping track of stocks and fulfilling requests for specimens. Here, we review some of the contributions made by living stock collections to research across all branches of the tree of life, and outline the challenges they face. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.24611.001 PMID:28266913

  1. Mag-indo1 affinity for Ca(2+), compartmentalization and binding to proteins: the challenge of measuring Mg(2+) concentrations in living cells.

    PubMed

    Pesco, J; Salmon, J M; Vigo, J; Viallet, P

    2001-03-01

    A physicochemical study of the Mag-indo1 binding to Ca(2+) in solution showed that: (i) the characteristic fluorescence spectra of Ca(2+)-bound and Mg(2+)-bound Mag-indo1 are identical; (ii) two successive equilibria occur for increasing Ca(2+) concentrations; and (iii) the value of the dissociation constant of the first one, as determined by using a probe dilution protocol, amounts to 780 nM. In order to investigate the fluorescence level of Mag-indo1 trapped in cell organelles, fluorescence spectra of Mag-indo1-loaded fibroblasts were recorded before and after a digitonin permeabilization. Their resolution into cation-bound, protein-bound, and free Mag-indo1 characteristic spectra allowed measurement of the fluorescence intensities of these species. The intensities emitted from whole cells were compared to those emitted from organelles (assumed to be endoplasmic reticulum according to a DiOC(6) loading). The cation-bound Mag-indo1 fluorescence resulted partially (20 to 50%) from the cytosol for 30% of the cells, and totally from compartments for 70% of the cells. We found a concentration value of 500 nM for compartmentalized Ca(2+) and concluded that the Mag-indo1 binding to Ca(2+) is likely to affect drastically the Mg(2+) concentration measurements in cells. Moreover, we showed that the amount variation of protein-bound Mag-indo1 also affects Mg(2+) measurements when using the two-wavelength ratio method.

  2. Thermodynamics of protein destabilization in live cells

    PubMed Central

    Danielsson, Jens; Mu, Xin; Lang, Lisa; Wang, Huabing; Binolfi, Andres; Theillet, François-Xavier; Bekei, Beata; Logan, Derek T.; Selenko, Philipp; Wennerström, Håkan; Oliveberg, Mikael

    2015-01-01

    Although protein folding and stability have been well explored under simplified conditions in vitro, it is yet unclear how these basic self-organization events are modulated by the crowded interior of live cells. To find out, we use here in-cell NMR to follow at atomic resolution the thermal unfolding of a β-barrel protein inside mammalian and bacterial cells. Challenging the view from in vitro crowding effects, we find that the cells destabilize the protein at 37 °C but with a conspicuous twist: While the melting temperature goes down the cold unfolding moves into the physiological regime, coupled to an augmented heat-capacity change. The effect seems induced by transient, sequence-specific, interactions with the cellular components, acting preferentially on the unfolded ensemble. This points to a model where the in vivo influence on protein behavior is case specific, determined by the individual protein’s interplay with the functionally optimized “interaction landscape” of the cellular interior. PMID:26392565

  3. Nanobiomechanics of living cells: a review

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jinju

    2014-01-01

    Nanobiomechanics of living cells is very important to understand cell–materials interactions. This would potentially help to optimize the surface design of the implanted materials and scaffold materials for tissue engineering. The nanoindentation techniques enable quantifying nanobiomechanics of living cells, with flexibility of using indenters of different geometries. However, the data interpretation for nanoindentation of living cells is often difficult. Despite abundant experimental data reported on nanobiomechanics of living cells, there is a lack of comprehensive discussion on testing with different tip geometries, and the associated mechanical models that enable extracting the mechanical properties of living cells. Therefore, this paper discusses the strategy of selecting the right type of indenter tips and the corresponding mechanical models at given test conditions. PMID:24748952

  4. Interactions between semiconductor nanowires and living cells.

    PubMed

    Prinz, Christelle N

    2015-06-17

    Semiconductor nanowires are increasingly used for biological applications and their small dimensions make them a promising tool for sensing and manipulating cells with minimal perturbation. In order to interface cells with nanowires in a controlled fashion, it is essential to understand the interactions between nanowires and living cells. The present paper reviews current progress in the understanding of these interactions, with knowledge gathered from studies where living cells were interfaced with vertical nanowire arrays. The effect of nanowires on cells is reported in terms of viability, cell-nanowire interface morphology, cell behavior, changes in gene expression as well as cellular stress markers. Unexplored issues and unanswered questions are discussed.

  5. A family living with Alzheimer's disease: The communicative challenges.

    PubMed

    Jones, Danielle

    2015-09-01

    Alzheimer's disease irrevocably challenges a person's capacity to communicate with others. Earlier research on these challenges focused on the language disorders associated with the condition and situated language deficit solely in the limitations of a person's cognitive and semantic impairments. This research falls short of gaining insight into the actual interactional experiences of a person with Alzheimer's and their family. Drawing on a UK data set of 70 telephone calls recorded over a two-and-a-half year period (2006-2008) between one elderly woman with Alzheimer's disease, and her daughter and son-in-law, this paper explores the role which communication (and its degeneration) plays in family relationships. Investigating these interactions, using a conversation analytic approach, reveals that there are clearly communicative difficulties, but closer inspection suggests that they arise due to the contingencies that are generated by the other's contributions in the interaction. That being so, this paper marks a departure from the traditional focus on language level analysis and the assumption that deficits are intrinsic to the individual with Alzheimer's, and instead focuses on the collaborative communicative challenges that arise in the interaction itself and which have a profound impact on people's lives and relationships.

  6. Protein reconstitution methods for visualizing biomolecular function in living cells.

    PubMed

    Ozawa, Takeaki

    2009-03-01

    One of the most challenging researches in current biology and medicinal chemistry is to understand how individual cellular molecules interact together in living cells. To visualize such molecules, genetically-encoded reporters have been used widely. The most common reporters are firefly luciferase, renilla luciferase, green fluorescent protein (GFP) and its variants with various spectral properties. In this review, novel design of split GFP and split luciferase is described. The principle is based on reconstitution of the split-reporter fragments when they are brought together into close proximity. The reconstitution methods are used for screening organelle-localized proteins, imaging dynamics of nuclear proteins and mRNAs in living cells, and visualizing protease activities in living animals. These methods are generally applicable for imaging of complex cellular processes and evaluating chemical effects in living cells and animals.

  7. Live attenuated vaccines: Historical successes and current challenges

    SciTech Connect

    Minor, Philip D.

    2015-05-15

    Live attenuated vaccines against human viral diseases have been amongst the most successful cost effective interventions in medical history. Smallpox was declared eradicated in 1980; poliomyelitis is nearing global eradication and measles has been controlled in most parts of the world. Vaccines function well for acute diseases such as these but chronic infections such as HIV are more challenging for reasons of both likely safety and probable efficacy. The derivation of the vaccines used has in general not been purely rational except in the sense that it has involved careful clinical trials of candidates and subsequent careful follow up in clinical use; the identification of the candidates is reviewed. - Highlights: • Live vaccines against human diseases caused by viruses have been very successful. • They have been developed by empirical clinical studies and problems identified in later use. • It can be difficult to balance ability to cause disease and ability to immunise for a strain. • There is currently no reliable basis for predicting success from pure virological studies. • Vaccinia, which eradicated smallpox, is the paradigm for all successes and issues.

  8. A Live Specimen Cell for the Microscope.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McNeil, D. W.

    1991-01-01

    Provides background and instructions for the assembly of a microaquarium, or specimen cell, in which the dynamic world of living microorganisms can be viewed through a microscope overextended periods of time utilizing the simplest of materials in the process. (JJK)

  9. Biosynthesis: Imaging cell-wall biosynthesis live

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bugg, Timothy D. H.

    2013-01-01

    The biosynthesis of peptidoglycan is an important step in bacterial cell division and cell-wall maturation. Now it has been shown that fluorescent D-amino acids can be used to label the peptidoglycan cell wall of living bacteria, providing a new tool to study this important process.

  10. Live cell imaging in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Parton, Richard M; Vallés, Ana Maria; Dobbie, Ian M; Davis, Ilan

    2010-04-01

    Although many of the techniques of live cell imaging in Drosophila melanogaster are also used by the greater community of cell biologists working on other model systems, studying living fly tissues presents unique difficulties with regard to keeping the cells alive, introducing fluorescent probes, and imaging through thick, hazy cytoplasm. This article outlines the major tissue types amenable to study by time-lapse cinematography and different methods for keeping the cells alive. It describes various imaging and associated techniques best suited to following changes in the distribution of fluorescently labeled molecules in real time in these tissues. Imaging, in general, is a rapidly developing discipline, and recent advances in imaging technology are able to greatly extend what can be achieved with live cell imaging of Drosophila tissues. As far as possible, this article includes the latest technical developments and discusses likely future developments in imaging methods that could have an impact on research using Drosophila.

  11. Colon-targeted delivery of live bacterial cell biotherapeutics including microencapsulated live bacterial cells

    PubMed Central

    Prakash, Satya; Malgorzata Urbanska, Aleksandra

    2008-01-01

    There has been an ample interest in delivery of therapeutic molecules using live cells. Oral delivery has been stipulated as best way to deliver live cells to humans for therapy. Colon, in particular, is a part of gastrointestinal (GI) tract that has been proposed to be an oral targeted site. The main objective of these oral therapy procedures is to deliver live cells not only to treat diseases like colorectal cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, and other GI tract diseases like intestinal obstruction and gastritis, but also to deliver therapeutic molecules for overall therapy in various diseases such as renal failure, coronary heart disease, hypertension, and others. This review provides a comprehensive summary of recent advancement in colon targeted live bacterial cell biotherapeutics. Current status of bacterial cell therapy, principles of artificial cells and its potentials in oral delivery of live bacterial cell biotherapeutics for clinical applications as well as biotherapeutic future perspectives are also discussed in our review. PMID:19707368

  12. Living Cell Microarrays: An Overview of Concepts

    PubMed Central

    Jonczyk, Rebecca; Kurth, Tracy; Lavrentieva, Antonina; Walter, Johanna-Gabriela; Scheper, Thomas; Stahl, Frank

    2016-01-01

    Living cell microarrays are a highly efficient cellular screening system. Due to the low number of cells required per spot, cell microarrays enable the use of primary and stem cells and provide resolution close to the single-cell level. Apart from a variety of conventional static designs, microfluidic microarray systems have also been established. An alternative format is a microarray consisting of three-dimensional cell constructs ranging from cell spheroids to cells encapsulated in hydrogel. These systems provide an in vivo-like microenvironment and are preferably used for the investigation of cellular physiology, cytotoxicity, and drug screening. Thus, many different high-tech microarray platforms are currently available. Disadvantages of many systems include their high cost, the requirement of specialized equipment for their manufacture, and the poor comparability of results between different platforms. In this article, we provide an overview of static, microfluidic, and 3D cell microarrays. In addition, we describe a simple method for the printing of living cell microarrays on modified microscope glass slides using standard DNA microarray equipment available in most laboratories. Applications in research and diagnostics are discussed, e.g., the selective and sensitive detection of biomarkers. Finally, we highlight current limitations and the future prospects of living cell microarrays. PMID:27600077

  13. Live cell imaging by multifocal multiphoton microscopy.

    PubMed

    Straub, M; Lodemann, P; Holroyd, P; Jahn, R; Hell, S W

    2000-10-01

    Multifocal multiphoton microscopy (MMM) permits parallel multiphoton excitation by scanning an array of high numerical aperture foci across a plane in the sample. MMM is particularly suitable for live cell investigations since it combines advantages of standard multiphoton microscopy such as optical sectioning and suppression of out-of-focus phototoxicity with high recording speeds. Here we describe several applications of MMM to live cell imaging using the neuroendocrine cell line PC12 and bovine chromaffin cells. Stainings were performed with the acidophilic dye acridine orange and the lipophilic dyes FM1-43 and Fast DiA as well as by transfection of the cells with GFP. In both bovine chromaffin and PC12 cells structural elements of nuclear chromatin and the 3-D distribution of acidic organelles inside the cells were visualized. In PC12 cells differentiated by nerve growth factor examples of neurites were monitored. Stainings of membranes were used to reconstruct the morphology of cells and neurites in three dimensions by volume-rendering and by isosurface plots. 3-D reconstructions were composed from stacks of about 50 images each with a diameter of 30-100 microm that were acquired within a few seconds. We conclude that MMM proves to be a technically simple and very effective method for fast 3-D live cell imaging at high resolution.

  14. Multispectral imaging fluorescence microscopy for living cells.

    PubMed

    Hiraoka, Yasushi; Shimi, Takeshi; Haraguchi, Tokuko

    2002-10-01

    Multispectral imaging technologies have been widely used in fields of astronomy and remote sensing. Interdisciplinary approaches developed in, for example, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA, USA), the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL, USA), or the Communications Research Laboratory (CRL, Japan) have extended the application areas of these technologies from planetary systems to cellular systems. Here we overview multispectral imaging systems that have been devised for microscope applications. We introduce these systems with particular interest in live cell imaging. Finally we demonstrate examples of spectral imaging of living cells using commercially available systems with no need for user engineering.

  15. Imaging neurotransmitter release kinetics in living cells

    SciTech Connect

    Tan, Weihong; Yeung, E.S.; Haydon, P.G.

    1996-12-31

    A new UV-laser based optical microscope and CCD detection system has been developed to image neurotransmitter in living biological cells. We demonstrate the detection of serotonin that has been taken up into and released from individual living glial cells (astrocytes) based on its native fluorescence. The detection methodology has high sensitivity, low limit of detection and does not require coupling to fluorescence dyes. We have studied serotonin uptake kinetics and its release dynamics in single glial cells. Different regions of a glial cell have taken up different amounts of serotonin with a variety of kinetics. Similarly, different serotonin release mechanisms have been observed in different astrocyte cell regions. The temporal resolution of this detection system is as fast as 50 ms, and the spatial resolution is diffraction limited. We will also report on single enzyme molecule reaction studies and single metal ion detection based on CCD imaging of pL reaction vials formed by micromachining on fused silica.

  16. Transition metal catalysis in the mitochondria of living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tomás-Gamasa, María; Martínez-Calvo, Miguel; Couceiro, José R.; Mascareñas, José L.

    2016-09-01

    The development of transition metal catalysts capable of promoting non-natural transformations within living cells can open significant new avenues in chemical and cell biology. Unfortunately, the complexity of the cell makes it extremely difficult to translate standard organometallic chemistry to living environments. Therefore, progress in this field has been very slow, and many challenges, including the possibility of localizing active metal catalysts into specific subcellular sites or organelles, remain to be addressed. Herein, we report a designed ruthenium complex that accumulates preferentially inside the mitochondria of mammalian cells, while keeping its ability to react with exogenous substrates in a bioorthogonal way. Importantly, we show that the subcellular catalytic activity can be used for the confined release of fluorophores, and even allows selective functional alterations in the mitochondria by the localized transformation of inert precursors into uncouplers of the membrane potential.

  17. Transition metal catalysis in the mitochondria of living cells

    PubMed Central

    Tomás-Gamasa, María; Martínez-Calvo, Miguel; Couceiro, José R.; Mascareñas, José L.

    2016-01-01

    The development of transition metal catalysts capable of promoting non-natural transformations within living cells can open significant new avenues in chemical and cell biology. Unfortunately, the complexity of the cell makes it extremely difficult to translate standard organometallic chemistry to living environments. Therefore, progress in this field has been very slow, and many challenges, including the possibility of localizing active metal catalysts into specific subcellular sites or organelles, remain to be addressed. Herein, we report a designed ruthenium complex that accumulates preferentially inside the mitochondria of mammalian cells, while keeping its ability to react with exogenous substrates in a bioorthogonal way. Importantly, we show that the subcellular catalytic activity can be used for the confined release of fluorophores, and even allows selective functional alterations in the mitochondria by the localized transformation of inert precursors into uncouplers of the membrane potential. PMID:27600651

  18. Apparatus and method for transforming living cells

    DOEpatents

    Okandan, Murat; Galambos, Paul C.

    2003-11-11

    An apparatus and method are disclosed for in vitro transformation of living cells. The apparatus, which is formed as a microelectromechanical device by surface micromachining, can be used to temporarily disrupt the cell walls or membrane of host cells one at a time so that a particular substance (e.g. a molecular tag, nucleic acid, bacteria, virus etc.) can be introduced into the cell. Disruption of the integrity of the host cells (i.e. poration) can be performed mechanically or electrically, or by both while the host cells are contained within a flow channel. Mechanical poration is possible using a moveable member which has a pointed or serrated edge and which is driven by an electrostatic actuator to abrade, impact or penetrate the host cell. Electroporation is produced by generating a relatively high electric field across the host cell when the host cell is located in the flow channel between a pair of electrodes having a voltage applied therebetween.

  19. Multifunctional Prenylated Peptides for Live Cell Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Wollack, James W.; Zeliadt, Nicholette A.; Mullen, Daniel G.; Amundson, Gregg; Geier, Suzanne; Falkum, Stacy; Wattenberg, Elizabeth V.; Barany, George; Distefano, Mark D.

    2009-01-01

    Protein prenylation is a common post-translational modification present in eukaryotic cells. Many key proteins involved in signal transduction pathways are prenylated and inhibition of prenylation can be useful as a therapeutic intervention. While significant progress has been made in understanding protein prenylation in vitro, we have been interested in studying this process in living cells, including the question of where prenylated molecules localize. Here, we describe the synthesis and live cell analysis of a series of fluorescently labeled multifunctional peptides, based on the C-terminus of the naturally prenylated protein CDC42. A synthetic route was developed that features a key Acm to Scm protecting group conversion. This strategy was compatible with acid-sensitive isoprenoid moieties, and allowed incorporation of an appropriate fluorophore as well as a cell-penetrating sequence (penetratin). These peptides are able to enter cells through different mechanisms, depending on the presence or absence of the penetratin vehicle and the nature of the prenyl group attached. Interestingly, prenylated peptides lacking penetratin are able to enter cells freely through an energy-independent process, and localize in a perinuclear fashion. This effect extends to a prenylated peptide that includes a full “CAAX box” sequence (specifically, CVLL). Hence, these peptides open the door for studies of protein prenylation in living cells, including enzymatic processing and intracellular peptide trafficking. Moreover, the synthetic strategy developed here should be useful for the assembly of other types of peptides that contain acid sensitive functionalities. PMID:19425596

  20. Bioluminescence imaging in live cells and animals.

    PubMed

    Tung, Jack K; Berglund, Ken; Gutekunst, Claire-Anne; Hochgeschwender, Ute; Gross, Robert E

    2016-04-01

    The use of bioluminescent reporters in neuroscience research continues to grow at a rapid pace as their applications and unique advantages over conventional fluorescent reporters become more appreciated. Here, we describe practical methods and principles for detecting and imaging bioluminescence from live cells and animals. We systematically tested various components of our conventional fluorescence microscope to optimize it for long-term bioluminescence imaging. High-resolution bioluminescence images from live neurons were obtained with our microscope setup, which could be continuously captured for several hours with no signs of phototoxicity. Bioluminescence from the mouse brain was also imaged noninvasively through the intact skull with a conventional luminescence imager. These methods demonstrate how bioluminescence can be routinely detected and measured from live cells and animals in a cost-effective way with common reagents and equipment.

  1. Biomimetic silica encapsultation of living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaroch, David Benjamin

    Living cells perform complex chemical processes on size and time scales that artificial systems cannot match. Cells respond dynamically to their environment, acting as biological sensors, factories, and drug delivery devices. To facilitate the use of living systems in engineered constructs, we have developed several new approaches to create stable protective microenvironments by forming bioinspired cell-membrane-specific silica-based encapsulants. These include vapor phase deposition of silica gels, use of endogenous membrane proteins and polysaccharides as a site for silica nucleation and polycondensation in a saturated environment, and protein templated ordered silica shell formation. We demonstrate silica layer formation at the surface of pluripotent stem-like cells, bacterial biofilms, and primary murine and human pancreatic islets. Materials are characterized by AFM, SEM and EDS. Viability assays confirm cell survival, and metabolite flux measurements demonstrate normal function and no major diffusion limitations. Real time PCR mRNA analysis indicates encapsulated islets express normal levels of genetic markers for β-cells and insulin production. The silica glass encapsulant produces a secondary bone like calcium phosphate mineral layer upon exposure to media. Such bioactive materials can improve device integration with surrounding tissue upon implantation. Given the favorable insulin response, bioactivity, and long-term viability observed in silica-coated islets, we are currently testing the encapsulant's ability to prevent immune system recognition of foreign transplants for the treatment of diabetes. Such hybrid silica-cellular constructs have a wide range of industrial, environmental, and medical applications.

  2. Imaging Single Cells in the Living Retina

    PubMed Central

    Williams, David R.

    2011-01-01

    A quarter century ago, we were limited to a macroscopic view of the retina inside the living eye. Since then, new imaging technologies, including confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy, optical coherence tomography, and adaptive optics fundus imaging, transformed the eye into a microscope in which individual cells can now be resolved noninvasively. These technologies have enabled a wide range of studies of the retina that were previously impossible. PMID:21596053

  3. Detecting stoichiometry of macromolecular complexes in live cells using FRET

    PubMed Central

    Ben-Johny, Manu; Yue, Daniel N.; Yue, David T.

    2016-01-01

    The stoichiometry of macromolecular interactions is fundamental to cellular signalling yet challenging to detect from living cells. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a powerful phenomenon for characterizing close-range interactions whereby a donor fluorophore transfers energy to a closely juxtaposed acceptor. Recognizing that FRET measured from the acceptor's perspective reports a related but distinct quantity versus the donor, we utilize the ratiometric comparison of the two to obtain the stoichiometry of a complex. Applying this principle to the long-standing controversy of calmodulin binding to ion channels, we find a surprising Ca2+-induced switch in calmodulin stoichiometry with Ca2+ channels—one calmodulin binds at basal cytosolic Ca2+ levels while two calmodulins interact following Ca2+ elevation. This feature is curiously absent for the related Na channels, also potently regulated by calmodulin. Overall, our assay adds to a burgeoning toolkit to pursue quantitative biochemistry of dynamic signalling complexes in living cells. PMID:27922011

  4. Detecting stoichiometry of macromolecular complexes in live cells using FRET.

    PubMed

    Ben-Johny, Manu; Yue, Daniel N; Yue, David T

    2016-12-06

    The stoichiometry of macromolecular interactions is fundamental to cellular signalling yet challenging to detect from living cells. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a powerful phenomenon for characterizing close-range interactions whereby a donor fluorophore transfers energy to a closely juxtaposed acceptor. Recognizing that FRET measured from the acceptor's perspective reports a related but distinct quantity versus the donor, we utilize the ratiometric comparison of the two to obtain the stoichiometry of a complex. Applying this principle to the long-standing controversy of calmodulin binding to ion channels, we find a surprising Ca(2+)-induced switch in calmodulin stoichiometry with Ca(2+) channels-one calmodulin binds at basal cytosolic Ca(2+) levels while two calmodulins interact following Ca(2+) elevation. This feature is curiously absent for the related Na channels, also potently regulated by calmodulin. Overall, our assay adds to a burgeoning toolkit to pursue quantitative biochemistry of dynamic signalling complexes in living cells.

  5. Physical Environments of Assisted Living: Research Needs and Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cutler, Lois J.

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: This article aims to review research measures and findings related to physical environments of assisted living (AL) according to multiple conceptual perspectives--ecological, cultural, and Maslovian hierarchy. Design and Methods: A literature and research review was undertaken with two foci: performance measures for physical environments,…

  6. Nuclear choreography: interpretations from living cells.

    PubMed

    Janicki, Susan M; Spector, David L

    2003-04-01

    The advent of green fluorescent protein technology, its use in photobleaching experiments and the development of methods to rapidly acquire images and analyze complex datasets have opened the door to unraveling the mechanisms of nuclear functions in living cells. Studies over the past few years have characterized the movement of chromatin, nuclear proteins and nuclear bodies and, in some cases, correlated their dynamics with energy dependence, cell cycle progression, developmental changes, factor targeting and nuclear position. The mechanisms by which nuclear components move or are restrained have important implications for understanding not only the efficacy of nuclear functions but also the regulation of developmental programs and cellular growth.

  7. Electromicroinjection of particles into living cells

    DOEpatents

    Ray, F. Andrew; Cram, L. Scott; Galey, William R.

    1988-01-01

    Method and apparatus for introducing particles into living cells. Fluorescently-stained human chromosomes are introduced into cultured, mitotic Chinese hamster cells using electromicroinjection. The recipient cells frequently survived the physiological perturbation imposed by a successful chromosome injection. Successfully injected recipient cells maintained viability as evidenced by their ability to be expanded. The technique relies on the surface charge of fluorescently stained chromosomes and their ability to be attracted and repelled to and from the tip of a micropipette. The apparatus includes a micropipette having a tip suitable for piercing the membrane of a target cell and an electrode inserted into the lumen thereof. The target cells and suspended particles are located in an electrically conducted solution, and the lumen of the micropipette is filled with an electrically conducting solution which contacts the electrode located therein. A second electrode is also located in the conducting solution containing the target cells and particles. Voltages applied to the electrode within the micropipette attract the particles to the region of the tip thereof. The particles adhere to the surface of the micropipette with sufficient force that insertion of the micropipette tip and attached particle through the membrane of a target cell will not dislodge the particle. By applying a voltage having the opposite polarity of the attraction voltage, the particles are expelled from the micropipette to which is then withdrawn from the cell body.

  8. Circumventing photodamage in live-cell microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Magidson, Valentin; Khodjakov, Alexey

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescence microscopy has become an essential tool in cell biology. This technique allows researchers to visualize the dynamics of tissue, cells, individual organelles and macromolecular assemblies inside the cell. Unfortunately, fluorescence microscopy is not completely ‘non-invasive’ as the high-intensity excitation light required for excitation of fluorophores is inherently toxic for live cells. Physiological changes induced by excessive illumination can lead to artifacts and abnormal responses. In this chapter we review major factors that contribute to phototoxicity and discuss practical solutions for circumventing photodamage. These solutions include the proper choice of image acquisition parameters, optimization of filter sets, hardware synchronization, and the use of intelligent illumination to avoid unnecessary light exposure. PMID:23931522

  9. Deep Learning Automates the Quantitative Analysis of Individual Cells in Live-Cell Imaging Experiments.

    PubMed

    Van Valen, David A; Kudo, Takamasa; Lane, Keara M; Macklin, Derek N; Quach, Nicolas T; DeFelice, Mialy M; Maayan, Inbal; Tanouchi, Yu; Ashley, Euan A; Covert, Markus W

    2016-11-01

    Live-cell imaging has opened an exciting window into the role cellular heterogeneity plays in dynamic, living systems. A major critical challenge for this class of experiments is the problem of image segmentation, or determining which parts of a microscope image correspond to which individual cells. Current approaches require many hours of manual curation and depend on approaches that are difficult to share between labs. They are also unable to robustly segment the cytoplasms of mammalian cells. Here, we show that deep convolutional neural networks, a supervised machine learning method, can solve this challenge for multiple cell types across the domains of life. We demonstrate that this approach can robustly segment fluorescent images of cell nuclei as well as phase images of the cytoplasms of individual bacterial and mammalian cells from phase contrast images without the need for a fluorescent cytoplasmic marker. These networks also enable the simultaneous segmentation and identification of different mammalian cell types grown in co-culture. A quantitative comparison with prior methods demonstrates that convolutional neural networks have improved accuracy and lead to a significant reduction in curation time. We relay our experience in designing and optimizing deep convolutional neural networks for this task and outline several design rules that we found led to robust performance. We conclude that deep convolutional neural networks are an accurate method that require less curation time, are generalizable to a multiplicity of cell types, from bacteria to mammalian cells, and expand live-cell imaging capabilities to include multi-cell type systems.

  10. DEMENTIA CARE IN ASSISTED LIVING: NEEDS AND CHALLENGES

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Marianne; Buckwalter, Kathleen C.; Kang, Hyunwook; Ellingrod, Vicki; Schultz, Susan K.

    2011-01-01

    Assisted living (AL) is an increasingly popular long-term care option for older adults with dementia. Recent reports suggest that as many as 68% of AL residents have dementia, and that frequency of both behavioral symptoms and psychotropic medications are high. This pilot project explored the feasibility of research methods for use in AL facilities. Findings suggest that most AL residents with dementia have moderate to severe dementia, and the majority are taking one or more psychotropic medication. Descriptive and qualitative findings related to health records, caregiver perceptions of behavioral symptoms, and practicality of assessment methods undertaken are described and implications for psychiatric nursing practice and research are reviewed. PMID:18649209

  11. Direct Visualization of De novo Lipogenesis in Single Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Junjie; Cheng, Ji-Xin

    2014-10-01

    Increased de novo lipogenesis is being increasingly recognized as a hallmark of cancer. Despite recent advances in fluorescence microscopy, autoradiography and mass spectrometry, direct observation of de novo lipogenesis in living systems remains to be challenging. Here, by coupling stimulated Raman scattering (SRS) microscopy with isotope labeled glucose, we were able to trace the dynamic metabolism of glucose in single living cells with high spatial-temporal resolution. As the first direct visualization, we observed that glucose was largely utilized for lipid synthesis in pancreatic cancer cells, which occurs at a much lower rate in immortalized normal pancreatic epithelial cells. By inhibition of glycolysis and fatty acid synthase (FAS), the key enzyme for fatty acid synthesis, we confirmed the deuterium labeled lipids in cancer cells were from de novo lipid synthesis. Interestingly, we also found that prostate cancer cells exhibit relatively lower level of de novo lipogenesis, but higher fatty acid uptake compared to pancreatic cancer cells. Together, our results demonstrate a valuable tool to study dynamic lipid metabolism in cancer and other disorders.

  12. Challenges and Limitations of Intelligent Ambient Assisted Living Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wichert, Reiner

    As a result of changing demographics, residing and being cared for in one's own familiar environment versus in an institutionalised inpatient setting is becoming the more attractive alternative for an ever increasing portion of the population. Despite its tremendous market potential, the AAL (Ambient Assisted Living) branch is still on the cusp of a mainstream breakthrough. A lack of viable business models is considered almost unanimously to be the greatest market obstacle to a broad implementation of innovative AAL systems. This paper highlights possible explanations for this deficit and shows why the AAL community has yet to arrive at joint solutions based on a unified AAL reference platform. Furthermore, this paper describes the enormous potential of AmI and AAL, as the first real opportunity for their success is provided through universAAL and AALOA.

  13. Nanoparticle PEBBLE sensors in live cells.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yong-Eun Koo; Kopelman, Raoul

    2012-01-01

    Live cell studies are of fundamental importance to the life sciences and their medical applications. Nanoparticle (NP)-based sensor platforms have many advantages as sensors for intracellular measurements, due to their flexible engineerability, noninvasive nature (due to their nano-size and nontoxic matrix), and, for some of the NPs, intrinsic optical properties. NP-based fluorescent sensors for intracellular measurements, so called PEBBLE sensors, have been developed for many important intracellular analytes and functions, including ions, small molecules, reactive oxygen species, physical properties, and enzyme activities, which are involved in many chemical, biochemical, and physical processes taking place inside the cell. PEBBLE sensors can be used with a standard microscope for simultaneous optical imaging of cellular structures and sensing of composition and function, just like investigations performed with molecular probes. However, PEBBLE sensors of any design and matrix can be delivered into cells by several standard methods, unlike dye molecules that need to be cell permeable. Furthermore, new sensing possibilities are enabled by PEBBLE nanosensors, which are not possible with molecular probes. This review summarizes a variety of designs of the PEBBLE sensors, their characteristics, and their applications to cells.

  14. Computational challenges in modeling and simulating living matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sena, Alexandre C.; Silva, Dilson; Marzulo, Leandro A. J.; de Castro, Maria Clicia Stelling

    2016-12-01

    Computational modeling has been successfully used to help scientists understand physical and biological phenomena. Recent technological advances allowthe simulation of larger systems, with greater accuracy. However, devising those systems requires new approaches and novel architectures, such as the use of parallel programming, so that the application can run in the new high performance environments, which are often computer clusters composed of different computation devices, as traditional CPUs, GPGPUs, Xeon Phis and even FPGAs. It is expected that scientists take advantage of the increasing computational power to model and simulate more complex structures and even merge different models into larger and more extensive ones. This paper aims at discussing the challenges of using those devices to simulate such complex systems.

  15. Living donor liver transplantation in Taiwan-challenges beyond surgery.

    PubMed

    Pillai, Vinod G; Chen, Chao-Long

    2016-04-01

    Taiwan has a high prevalence of hepatitis B and C viral infections, and consequently a high burden of chronic liver diseases. Liver transplantation (LT) began in Taiwan in 1984, and living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) in 1994. Education and collaboration between physicians on a national and international scale were important factors in the development of transplantation in East Asia. Technical innovations in donor hepatectomy, vascular and biliary reconstruction, and interventional radiology, perioperative management of transplant patients and development of associated specialties have enabled achievement of excellent results after both adult and pediatric LDLT. The establishment of rigorous protocols to withstand strict medico-legal scrutiny, combined with technical excellence has contributed to excellent surgical outcomes. The socioeconomic development of Taiwan and the first nationwide hepatitis B vaccination program in the world have also contributed to the decrease in disease burden and improvement of quality of healthcare. This article examines the factors enabling the development of LT in Taiwan, the innovations that have contributed to excellent outcomes, and indicates the future prospects of LDLT in Taiwan.

  16. Cyborg cells: functionalisation of living cells with polymers and nanomaterials.

    PubMed

    Fakhrullin, Rawil F; Zamaleeva, Alsu I; Minullina, Renata T; Konnova, Svetlana A; Paunov, Vesselin N

    2012-06-07

    Living cells interfaced with a range of polyelectrolyte coatings, magnetic and noble metal nanoparticles, hard mineral shells and other complex nanomaterials can perform functions often completely different from their original specialisation. Such "cyborg cells" are already finding a range of novel applications in areas like whole cell biosensors, bioelectronics, toxicity microscreening, tissue engineering, cell implant protection and bioanalytical chemistry. In this tutorial review, we describe the development of novel methods for functionalisation of cells with polymers and nanoparticles and comment on future advances in this technology in the light of other literature approaches. We review recent studies on the cell viability and function upon direct deposition of nanoparticles, coating with polyelectrolytes, polymer assisted assembly of nanomaterials and hard shells on the cell surface. The cell toxicity issues are considered for many practical applications in terms of possible adverse effects of the deposited polymers, polyelectrolytes and nanoparticles on the cell surface.

  17. Current challenges in dedifferentiated fat cells research.

    PubMed

    Shah, Mickey; George, Richard L; Evancho-Chapman, M Michelle; Zhang, Ge

    2016-07-02

    Dedifferentiated fat cells show great promises as a novel cell source for stem cell research. It has many advantages when used for cell-based therapeutics including abundance, pluripotency, and safety. However, there are many obstacles researchers need to overcome to make the next big move in DFAT cells research. In this review, we summarize the current main challenges in DFAT cells research including cell culture purity, phenotypic properties, and dedifferentiation mechanisms. The common methods to produce DFAT cells as well as the cell purity issue during DFAT cell production have been introduced. Current approaches to improve DFAT cell purity have been discussed. The phenotypic profile of DFAT cells have been listed and compared with other stem cells. Further studies on elucidating the underlying dedifferentiation mechanisms will dramatically advance DFAT cell research.

  18. Mathematical and numerical challenges in living biological materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forest, M. Gregory; Vasquez, Paula A.

    2013-10-01

    The proclaimed Century of Biology is rapidly leading to the realization of how starkly different and more complex biological materials are than the materials that underpinned the industrial and technological revolution. These differences arise, in part, because biological matter exhibits both viscous and elastic behavior. Moreover, this behavior varies across the frequency, wavelength and amplitude spectrum of forcing. This broadclass of responsesin biological matter requires multiple frequency-dependent functions to specify material behavior, instead of a discrete set of parameters that relate to either viscosity or elasticity. This complexity prevails even if the biological matter is assumed to be spatially homogeneous, which is rarely true. However, very little progress has been made on the characterization of heterogeneity and how to build that information into constitutive laws and predictive models. In addition, most biological matter is non-stationary, which motivates the term "living". Biomaterials typically are in an active state in order to perform certain functions, and they often are modified or replenished on the basis of external stimuli. It has become popular in materials engineering to try to duplicate some of the functionality of biomaterials, e.g., a lot of effort has gone into the design of self-assembling, self-healing and shape shifting materials. These distinguishing features of biomaterials require significantly more degrees of freedom than traditional composites and many of the molecular species and their roles in functionality have yet to be determined. A typical biological material includes small molecule biochemical species that react and diffuse within larger species. These large molecular weightspecies provide the primary structural and biophysical properties of the material. The small molecule binding and unbinding kinetics serves to modulate material properties, and typical small molecule production and release are governed by

  19. Detection of intracellular phosphatidylserine in living cells.

    PubMed

    Calderon, Frances; Kim, Hee-Yong

    2008-03-01

    To demonstrate the intracellular phosphatidylserine (PS) distribution in neuronal cells, neuroblastoma cells and hippocampal neurons expressing green fluorescence protein (GFP)-AnnexinV were stimulated with a calcium ionophore and localization of GFP-AnnexinV was monitored by fluorescence microscopy. Initially, GFP-AnnexinV distributed evenly in the cytosol and nucleus. Raising the intracellular calcium level with ionomycin-induced translocation of cytoplasmic GFP-AnnexinV to the plasma membrane but not to the nuclear membrane, indicating that PS distributes in the cytoplasmic side of the plasma membrane. Nuclear GFP-AnnexinV subsequently translocated to the nuclear membrane, indicating PS localization in the nuclear envelope. GFP-AnnexinV also localized in a juxtanuclear organelle that was identified as the recycling endosome. However, minimal fluorescence was detected in any other subcellular organelles including mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi complex, and lysosomes, strongly suggesting that PS distribution in the cytoplasmic face in these organelles is negligible. Similarly, in hippocampal primary neurons PS distributed in the inner leaflet of plasma membranes of cell body and dendrites, and in the nuclear envelope. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of intracellular PS localization in living cells, providing an insight for specific sites of PS interaction with soluble proteins involved in signaling processes.

  20. Synthetic Glycosphingolipids for Live-Cell Labeling.

    PubMed

    Dauner, Martin; Batroff, Ellen; Bachmann, Verena; Hauck, Christof R; Wittmann, Valentin

    2016-07-20

    Glycosphingolipids are an important component of cell membranes that are involved in many biological processes. Fluorescently labeled glycosphingolipids are frequently used to gain insight into their localization. However, the attachment of a fluorophore to the glycan part or-more commonly-to the lipid part of glycosphingolipids is known to alter the biophysical properties and can perturb the biological function of the probe. Presented here is the synthesis of novel glycosphingolipid probes with mono- and disaccharide head groups and ceramide moieties containing fatty acids of varying chain length (C4 to C20). These glycosphingolipids bear an azide or an alkyne group as chemical reporter to which a fluorophore can be attached through a bioorthogonal ligation reaction. The fluorescent tag and any linker connected to it can be chosen in a flexible manner. We demonstrate the suitability of the probes by selective visualization of the plasma membrane of living cells by confocal microscopy techniques. Whereas the derivatives with the shorter fatty acids can be directly applied to HEK 293T cells, the hydrophobic glycosphingolipids with longer fatty acids can be delivered to cells using fusogenic liposomes.

  1. Photoacoustics of individual live cells and particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kudryashov, Sergey I.; Allen, Susan D.; Galanzha, Ekaterina I.; Galitovskaya, E.; Zharov, Vladimir P.

    2006-02-01

    The photoacoustic (PA) technique has been employed to a number of new biomedical applications based of highly sensitive detection of laser-induced acoustic waves from individual live cells and single absorbing micro-particles or clusters of nanoparticles. These applications involve both linear and non-linear thermoacoustic phenomena initiated by focused nanosecond single laser pulse and detected with a fast PZT-ceramic acoustic transducer. Particularly, we present the following experimental results: 1) monitoring of linear and non-linear PA responses from red blood cells in suspensions in vitro; 2) detection of PA responses from breast cancer cell targeted with gold nanoparticles; 3) PA study of linear and non-linear interaction of laser with colored polystyrene micro-particles as model single absorbers; 4) monitoring of PA responses from moving absorbers in flow in vitro (PA flow cytometry in vitro); 5) recording of PA responses from blood flow in vivo on rat mesentery as animal model (PA flow cytometery in vivo); and 6) monitoring of sedimentation kinetics of particles and cells. The obtained results demonstrate the high sensitivity, low background, simple detection principle, easy data acquisition, and straightforward interpretation of the PA data.

  2. Limited dissemination of pathogenic SIV after vaginal challenge of rhesus monkeys immunized with a live, attenuated lentivirus.

    PubMed

    Stone, Mars; Ma, Zhong-Min; Genescà, Meritxell; Fritts, Linda; Blozois, Shelley; McChesney, Michael B; Miller, Christopher J

    2009-09-30

    In non-human primate models of AIDS, attenuated lentiviruses provide the most reliable protection from challenge with pathogenic virus but the extent to which the vaccine virus replicates after challenge is unclear. At 7 and 14 days after vaginal challenge with pathogenic SIVmac239, plasma SIVenv RNA levels were significantly lower in female macaques immunized 6 months earlier with live, attenuated SHIV89.6 compared to unimmunized control animals. In 2 SHIV-immunized, unprotected macaques SIV replication produced moderate-level plasma viremia with dissemination of challenge virus to all tissues on day 14 after challenge. In protected, SHIV-immunized monkeys, SIV replication was controlled in all tissues, from the day of challenge through 14 days post-challenge. Further, in CD8(+) T cell-depleted SHIV-immunized animals, SIV replication and dissemination were more rapid than in control animals. These findings suggest that replication of a pathogenic AIDS virus can be controlled at the site of mucosal inoculation by live-attenuated lentivirus immunization.

  3. Dopamine receptor oligomerization visualized in living cells.

    PubMed

    O'Dowd, Brian F; Ji, Xiaodong; Alijaniaram, Mohammad; Rajaram, Ryan D; Kong, Michael M C; Rashid, Asim; Nguyen, Tuan; George, Susan R

    2005-11-04

    G protein-coupled receptors occur as dimers within arrays of oligomers. We visualized ensembles of dopamine receptor oligomers in living cells and evaluated the contributions of receptor conformation to the dynamics of oligomer association and dissociation, using a strategy of trafficking a receptor to another cellular compartment. We incorporated a nuclear localization sequence into the D1 dopamine receptor, which translocated from the cell surface to the nucleus. Receptor inverse agonists blocked this translocation, retaining the modified receptor, D1-nuclear localization signal (NLS), at the cell surface. D1 co-translocated with D1-NLS to the nucleus, indicating formation of homooligomers. (+)-Butaclamol retained both receptors at the cell surface, and removal of the drug allowed translocation of both receptors to the nucleus. Agonist-nonbinding D1(S198A/S199A)-NLS, containing two substituted serine residues in transmembrane 5 also oligomerized with D1, and both were retained on the cell surface by (+)-butaclamol. Drug removal disrupted these oligomerized receptors so that D1 remained at the cell surface while D1(S198A/S199A)-NLS trafficked to the nucleus. Thus, receptor conformational differences permitted oligomer disruption and showed that ligand-binding pocket occupancy by the inverse agonist induced a conformational change. We demonstrated robust heterooligomerization between the D2 dopamine receptor and the D1 receptor. The heterooligomers could not be disrupted by inverse agonists targeting either one of the receptor constituents. However, D2 did not heterooligomerize with the structurally modified D1(S198A/S199A), indicating an impaired interface for their interaction. Thus, we describe a novel method showing that a homogeneous receptor conformation maintains the structural integrity of oligomers, whereas conformational heterogeneity disrupts it.

  4. The lived experiences of adolescents with sickle cell disease in Kingston, Jamaica

    PubMed Central

    Forrester, Andrea Brown; Barton-Gooden, Antoinette; Pitter, Cynthia; Lindo, Jascinth L. M.

    2015-01-01

    Aim To explore the lived experiences of adolescents with sickle cell disease, in Kingston, Jamaica. Method A descriptive qualitative design was used for this research. In-depth interviews were conducted with six adolescents with sickle cell disease at a Sickle Cell Unit operated by the University of the West Indies. Interviews were audiotaped, transcribed, and thematically analyzed. Results The majority of the adolescents demonstrated a positive self-concept. They reported strong family, school, and peer support which made them feel accepted. All were actively engaged in social activities such as parties, but had challenges participating in sporting activities. Various coping strategies were utilized to address challenges of the disease including praying, watching television, and surfing the Internet. Conclusion Sickle cell disease can be very challenging for the adolescent, but with positive self-concept and increased social support, especially from family and peers, these adolescents were able to effectively cope with their condition and live productive lives. PMID:26341889

  5. Pathogenic long-lived plasma cells and their survival niches in autoimmunity, malignancy, and allergy.

    PubMed

    Winter, Oliver; Dame, Christof; Jundt, Franziska; Hiepe, Falk

    2012-12-01

    Long-lived plasma cells survive in a protected microenvironment for years or even a lifetime and provide humoral memory by establishing persistent Ab titers. Long-lived autoreactive, malignant, and allergen-specific plasma cells are likewise protected in their survival niche and are refractory to immunosuppression, B cell depletion, and irradiation. Their elimination remains an essential therapeutic challenge. Recent data indicate that long-lived plasma cells reside in a multicomponent plasma cell niche with a stable mesenchymal and a dynamic hematopoietic component, both providing essential soluble and membrane-bound survival factors. Alternative niches with different hematopoietic cell components compensate fluctuations of single cell types but may also harbor distinct plasma cell subsets. In this Brief Review, we discuss conventional therapies in autoimmunity and multiple myeloma in comparison with novel drugs that target plasma cells and their niches. In the future, such strategies may enable the specific depletion of pathogenic plasma cells while leaving the protective humoral memory intact.

  6. Bursts of Active Transport in Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Bo; Kuo, James; Granick, Steve

    2013-11-01

    We show, using a large new data set, that the temporally resolved speed of active cargo transport in living cells follows a scaling law over several decades of time and length. The statistical regularities display a time-averaged shape that we interpret to reflect stress buildup, followed by rapid release. The scaling power law agrees quantitatively with those reported in inanimate systems (jammed colloids and granular media, and magnetic Barkhausen noise), suggesting a common origin in pushing through a crowded environment in a weak force regime. The implied regulation of the speed of active cellular transport due to environmental obstruction results in bursts of speed and acceleration. These findings extend the classical notion of molecular crowding.

  7. Bursts of active transport in living cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bo; Kuo, James; Granick, Steve

    2013-11-15

    We show, using a large new data set, that the temporally resolved speed of active cargo transport in living cells follows a scaling law over several decades of time and length. The statistical regularities display a time-averaged shape that we interpret to reflect stress buildup, followed by rapid release. The scaling power law agrees quantitatively with those reported in inanimate systems (jammed colloids and granular media, and magnetic Barkhausen noise), suggesting a common origin in pushing through a crowded environment in a weak force regime. The implied regulation of the speed of active cellular transport due to environmental obstruction results in bursts of speed and acceleration. These findings extend the classical notion of molecular crowding.

  8. Microinjection of gelsolin into living cells

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    Gelsolins are actin-binding proteins that cap, nucleate, and sever actin filaments. Microinjection of cytoplasmic or plasma gelsolin into living fibroblasts and macrophages did not affect the shape, actin distribution, deformability, or ruffling activity of the cells. Gelsolin requires calcium for activity, but the NH2-terminal half is active without calcium. Microinjection of this proteolytic fragment had marked effects: the cells rounded up, stopped ruffling, became soft, and stress fibers disappeared. These changes are similar to those seen with cytochalasin, which also caps barbed ends of actin filaments. Attempts to raise the cytoplasmic calcium concentration and thereby activate the injected gelsolin were unsuccessful, but the increases in calcium concentration were minimal or transient and may not have been sufficient. Our interpretation of these results is that at the low calcium concentrations normally found in cells, gelsolin does not express the activities observed in vitro at higher calcium concentrations. We presume that gelsolin may be active at certain times or places if the calcium concentration is elevated to a sufficient level, but we cannot exclude the existence of another molecule that inhibits gelsolin. Microinjection of a 1:1 gelsolin/actin complex had no effect on the cells. This complex is stable in the absence of calcium and has capping activity but no severing and less nucleation activity as compared with either gelsolin in calcium or the NH2- terminal fragment. The NH2-terminal fragment-actin complex also has capping and nucleating activity but no severing activity. On microinjection it had the same effects as the fragment alone. The basis for the difference between the two complexes is unknown. The native molecular weight of rabbit plasma gelsolin is 82,500, and the extinction coefficient at 280 nm is 1.68 cm2/mg. A new simple procedure for purification of plasma gelsolin is described. PMID:3029140

  9. Imidazolium-tagged glycan probes for non-covalent labeling of live cells.

    PubMed

    Benito-Alifonso, David; Tremell, Shirley; Sadler, Joanna C; Berry, Monica; Galan, M Carmen

    2016-04-07

    Selective, bioorthogonal and fast labeling of glycoconjugates in living cells is a major challenge for synthetic and cellular biology. Here we report the use imidazolium tagged-mannosamine derivative (ITag-Man) for the non-covalent, rapid and site-specific labeling of sialic acid containing glycoproteins using commercial N-nitrilotriacetate fluorescent reagents in a range of cell lines.

  10. Electron-beam direct processing on living cell membrane

    SciTech Connect

    Hoshino, Takayuki; Morishima, Keisuke

    2011-10-24

    We demonstrated a direct processing on a living Hep G2 cell membrane in conventional cultivation conditions using an electron beam. Electron beam-induced deposition from liquid precursor 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene and ablation was performed on the living cells. The 2.5-10 keV electron beam which was irradiated through a 100-nm-thick SiN nanomembrane could induce a deposition pattern and a ablation on a living cell membrane. This electron beam direct processing can provide simple in-situ cell surface modification for an analytical method of living cell membrane dynamic.

  11. Mechanical force characterization in manipulating live cells with optical tweezers.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yanhua; Sun, Dong; Huang, Wenhao

    2011-02-24

    Laser trapping with optical tweezers is a noninvasive manipulation technique and has received increasing attentions in biological applications. Understanding forces exerted on live cells is essential to cell biomechanical characterizations. Traditional numerical or experimental force measurement assumes live cells as ideal objects, ignoring their complicated inner structures and rough membranes. In this paper, we propose a new experimental method to calibrate the trapping and drag forces acted on live cells. Binding a micro polystyrene sphere to a live cell and moving the mixture with optical tweezers, we can obtain the drag force on the cell by subtracting the drag force on the sphere from the total drag force on the mixture, under the condition of extremely low Reynolds number. The trapping force on the cell is then obtained from the drag force when the cell is in force equilibrium state. Experiments on numerous live cells demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed force calibration approach.

  12. Nanomembrane-Based, Thermal-Transport Biosensor for Living Cells.

    PubMed

    ElAfandy, Rami T; AbuElela, Ayman F; Mishra, Pawan; Janjua, Bilal; Oubei, Hassan M; Büttner, Ulrich; Majid, Mohammed A; Ng, Tien Khee; Merzaban, Jasmeen S; Ooi, Boon S

    2017-02-01

    Knowledge of materials' thermal-transport properties, conductivity and diffusivity, is crucial for several applications within areas of biology, material science and engineering. Specifically, a microsized, flexible, biologically integrated thermal transport sensor is beneficial to a plethora of applications, ranging across plants physiological ecology and thermal imaging and treatment of cancerous cells, to thermal dissipation in flexible semiconductors and thermoelectrics. Living cells pose extra challenges, due to their small volumes and irregular curvilinear shapes. Here a novel approach of simultaneously measuring thermal conductivity and diffusivity of different materials and its applicability to single cells is demonstrated. This technique is based on increasing phonon-boundary-scattering rate in nanomembranes, having extremely low flexural rigidities, to induce a considerable spectral dependence of the bandgap-emission over excitation-laser intensity. It is demonstrated that once in contact with organic or inorganic materials, the nanomembranes' emission spectrally shift based on the material's thermal diffusivity and conductivity. This NM-based technique is further applied to differentiate between different types and subtypes of cancer cells, based on their thermal-transport properties. It is anticipated that this novel technique to enable an efficient single-cell thermal targeting, allow better modeling of cellular thermal distribution and enable novel diagnostic techniques based on variations of single-cell thermal-transport properties.

  13. Kinase Activity Studied in Living Cells Using an Immunoassay

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bavec, Aljos?a

    2014-01-01

    This laboratory exercise demonstrates the use of an immunoassay for studying kinase enzyme activity in living cells. The advantage over the classical method, in which students have to isolate the enzyme from cell material and measure its activity in vitro, is that enzyme activity is modulated and measured in living cells, providing a more…

  14. Deep Learning Automates the Quantitative Analysis of Individual Cells in Live-Cell Imaging Experiments

    PubMed Central

    Van Valen, David A.; Lane, Keara M.; Quach, Nicolas T.; Maayan, Inbal

    2016-01-01

    Live-cell imaging has opened an exciting window into the role cellular heterogeneity plays in dynamic, living systems. A major critical challenge for this class of experiments is the problem of image segmentation, or determining which parts of a microscope image correspond to which individual cells. Current approaches require many hours of manual curation and depend on approaches that are difficult to share between labs. They are also unable to robustly segment the cytoplasms of mammalian cells. Here, we show that deep convolutional neural networks, a supervised machine learning method, can solve this challenge for multiple cell types across the domains of life. We demonstrate that this approach can robustly segment fluorescent images of cell nuclei as well as phase images of the cytoplasms of individual bacterial and mammalian cells from phase contrast images without the need for a fluorescent cytoplasmic marker. These networks also enable the simultaneous segmentation and identification of different mammalian cell types grown in co-culture. A quantitative comparison with prior methods demonstrates that convolutional neural networks have improved accuracy and lead to a significant reduction in curation time. We relay our experience in designing and optimizing deep convolutional neural networks for this task and outline several design rules that we found led to robust performance. We conclude that deep convolutional neural networks are an accurate method that require less curation time, are generalizable to a multiplicity of cell types, from bacteria to mammalian cells, and expand live-cell imaging capabilities to include multi-cell type systems. PMID:27814364

  15. The Challenges of Living With an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator: A Qualitative Study

    PubMed Central

    Abbasi, Mohammad; Negarandeh, Reza; Norouzadeh, Reza; Shojae Mogadam, Amir Reza

    2016-01-01

    Background Dysrhythmia is one of the most common causes of sudden cardiac death worldwide. An implantable cardioverter defibrillator is the most effective method of treatment for dysrhythmias causing cardiac arrest. However, living with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator is associated with challenges such as fear, anxiety, and depression. Objectives The purpose of this study was to identify the challenges of living with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator. Patients and Methods In this qualitative study, an interpretive phenomenological approach was used, with thirteen participants (seven men and six women) between the ages of 21 and 70 years old (mean = 58.15, SD = 14.4). The duration of having an implantable cardioverter defibrillator was 1 - 120 months (mean = 23.15, SD = 33.31). Maximum variation sampling was used to purposefully select the participants from the governmental Imam Khomeini hospital in Tehran, Iran, between May and October of 2013. Semi-structured interviews were conducted for 30 to 45 minutes, and Van Manen’s six-step method was used in this study. Results The challenges of living with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator include: living with fear, concerns about the future, concerns about device malfunction, fearing death during the shock, pain due to the shock, loss of control, the cost of the device, and the lifestyle limitations. Conclusions Patients who live with implantable cardioverter defibrillators face many concerns and challenges. Therefore, the role of nurses in teaching patients before and after implementation is very important. PMID:28180011

  16. Challenges for heart disease stem cell therapy

    PubMed Central

    Hoover-Plow, Jane; Gong, Yanqing

    2012-01-01

    Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading cause of death worldwide. The use of stem cells to improve recovery of the injured heart after myocardial infarction (MI) is an important emerging therapeutic strategy. However, recent reviews of clinical trials of stem cell therapy for MI and ischemic heart disease recovery report that less than half of the trials found only small improvements in cardiac function. In clinical trials, bone marrow, peripheral blood, or umbilical cord blood cells were used as the source of stem cells delivered by intracoronary infusion. Some trials administered only a stem cell mobilizing agent that recruits endogenous sources of stem cells. Important challenges to improve the effectiveness of stem cell therapy for CVD include: (1) improved identification, recruitment, and expansion of autologous stem cells; (2) identification of mobilizing and homing agents that increase recruitment; and (3) development of strategies to improve stem cell survival and engraftment of both endogenous and exogenous sources of stem cells. This review is an overview of stem cell therapy for CVD and discusses the challenges these three areas present for maximum optimization of the efficacy of stem cell therapy for heart disease, and new strategies in progress. PMID:22399855

  17. 4D Imaging of Protein Aggregation in Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Kaganovich, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    One of the key tasks of any living cell is maintaining the proper folding of newly synthesized proteins in the face of ever-changing environmental conditions and an intracellular environment that is tightly packed, sticky, and hazardous to protein stability1. The ability to dynamically balance protein production, folding and degradation demands highly-specialized quality control machinery, whose absolute necessity is observed best when it malfunctions. Diseases such as ALS, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and certain forms of Cystic Fibrosis have a direct link to protein folding quality control components2, and therefore future therapeutic development requires a basic understanding of underlying processes. Our experimental challenge is to understand how cells integrate damage signals and mount responses that are tailored to diverse circumstances. The primary reason why protein misfolding represents an existential threat to the cell is the propensity of incorrectly folded proteins to aggregate, thus causing a global perturbation of the crowded and delicate intracellular folding environment1. The folding health, or "proteostasis," of the cellular proteome is maintained, even under the duress of aging, stress and oxidative damage, by the coordinated action of different mechanistic units in an elaborate quality control system3,4. A specialized machinery of molecular chaperones can bind non-native polypeptides and promote their folding into the native state1, target them for degradation by the ubiquitin-proteasome system5, or direct them to protective aggregation inclusions6-9. In eukaryotes, the cytosolic aggregation quality control load is partitioned between two compartments8-10: the juxtanuclear quality control compartment (JUNQ) and the insoluble protein deposit (IPOD) (Figure 1 - model). Proteins that are ubiquitinated by the protein folding quality control machinery are delivered to the JUNQ, where they are processed for degradation by the proteasome. Misfolded

  18. Delineating cooperative responses of processive motors in living cells.

    PubMed

    Efremov, Artem K; Radhakrishnan, Anand; Tsao, David S; Bookwalter, Carol S; Trybus, Kathleen M; Diehl, Michael R

    2014-01-21

    Characterizing the collective functions of cytoskeletal motors is critical to understanding mechanisms that regulate the internal organization of eukaryotic cells as well as the roles various transport defects play in human diseases. Though in vitro assays using synthetic motor complexes have generated important insights, dissecting collective motor functions within living cells still remains challenging. Here, we show that the protein heterodimerization switches FKBP-rapalog-FRB can be harnessed in engineered COS-7 cells to compare the collective responses of kinesin-1 and myosinVa motors to changes in motor number and cargo size. The dependence of cargo velocities, travel distances, and position noise on these parameters suggests that multiple myosinVa motors can cooperate more productively than collections of kinesins in COS-7 cells. In contrast to observations with kinesin-1 motors, the velocities and run lengths of peroxisomes driven by multiple myosinVa motors are found to increase with increasing motor density, but are relatively insensitive to the higher loads associated with transporting large peroxisomes in the viscoelastic environment of the COS-7 cell cytoplasm. Moreover, these distinctions appear to be derived from the different sensitivities of kinesin-1 and myosinVa velocities and detachment rates to forces at the single-motor level. The collective behaviors of certain processive motors, like myosinVa, may therefore be more readily tunable and have more substantial roles in intracellular transport regulatory mechanisms compared with those of other cytoskeletal motors.

  19. Strategies for Living with the Challenges of HIV and Antiretroviral Use in Zambia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, Deborah; Zulu, Isaac; Mumbi, Miriam; Chitalu, Ndashi; Vamos, Szonja; Gomez, Jacqueline; Weiss, Stephen M.

    2009-01-01

    This study sought to identify strategies for living with the challenges of HIV and antiretroviral (ARV) use among new medication users in urban Zambia. Participants (n = 160) were recruited from urban Lusaka, Zambia. Qualitative Data was drawn from monthly ARV treatment education intervention groups addressing HIV and antiretroviral use. Themes…

  20. Challenges Experienced in Teaching Daily Living Skills to Learners with Mental Retardation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruteere, Rosallin Kananu; Mutia, Jacob Mpekethu; Mwoma, Teresa; Runo, Mary

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to establish the challenges encountered when teaching daily living skills (DLS) to learners with mental retardation (MR). The study used purposive sampling to select the sub-county, special units, learners and teachers. The target population in this study was eighty four respondents. The sample for the study was the same…

  1. Builders Challenge High Performance Builder Spotlight - Masco Environments for Living, Las Vegas, Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    2009-01-01

    Building America Builders Challenge fact sheet on Masco’s Environments for Living Certified Green demo home at the 2009 International Builders Show in Las Vegas. The home has a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) index score of 44, a right-sized air conditi

  2. Live Cell Optical Sensing for High Throughput Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Ye

    Live cell optical sensing employs label-free optical biosensors to non-invasively measure stimulus-induced dynamic mass redistribution (DMR) in live cells within the sensing volume of the biosensor. The resultant DMR signal is an integrated cellular response, and reflects cell signaling mediated through the cellular target(s) with which the stimulus intervenes. This article describes the uses of live cell optical sensing for probing cell biology and ligand pharmacology, with an emphasis of resonant waveguide grating biosensor cellular assays for high throughput applications.

  3. New microscope gives scientists the inside scoop on living cells.

    PubMed

    Medlin, J

    1999-11-01

    Scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Washington, have developed a unique imaging system capable of focusing on a single living cell within an organism. This new technology will be used in what the multidisciplinary team has termed a "cellular observatory" to study the effect of environmental insults to live cells.

  4. Fluorescence lifetime imaging of molecular rotors in living cells.

    PubMed

    Suhling, Klaus; Levitt, James A; Chung, Pei-Hua; Kuimova, Marina K; Yahioglu, Gokhan

    2012-02-09

    Diffusion is often an important rate-determining step in chemical reactions or biological processes and plays a role in a wide range of intracellular events. Viscosity is one of the key parameters affecting the diffusion of molecules and proteins, and changes in viscosity have been linked to disease and malfunction at the cellular level. While methods to measure the bulk viscosity are well developed, imaging microviscosity remains a challenge. Viscosity maps of microscopic objects, such as single cells, have until recently been hard to obtain. Mapping viscosity with fluorescence techniques is advantageous because, similar to other optical techniques, it is minimally invasive, non-destructive and can be applied to living cells and tissues. Fluorescent molecular rotors exhibit fluorescence lifetimes and quantum yields which are a function of the viscosity of their microenvironment. Intramolecular twisting or rotation leads to non-radiative decay from the excited state back to the ground state. A viscous environment slows this rotation or twisting, restricting access to this non-radiative decay pathway. This leads to an increase in the fluorescence quantum yield and the fluorescence lifetime. Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging (FLIM) of modified hydrophobic BODIPY dyes that act as fluorescent molecular rotors show that the fluorescence lifetime of these probes is a function of the microviscosity of their environment. A logarithmic plot of the fluorescence lifetime versus the solvent viscosity yields a straight line that obeys the Förster Hoffman equation. This plot also serves as a calibration graph to convert fluorescence lifetime into viscosity. Following incubation of living cells with the modified BODIPY fluorescent molecular rotor, a punctate dye distribution is observed in the fluorescence images. The viscosity value obtained in the puncta in live cells is around 100 times higher than that of water and of cellular cytoplasm. Time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy

  5. A reovirus challenge model applicable in commercial broilers after live vaccination.

    PubMed

    van Loon, A A W M; Suurland, B; van der Marel, P

    2002-02-01

    The efficacy of live reovirus vaccines may be determined by challenge via the foot pad route 3 to 4 weeks after vaccination. Swelling and discoloration in the foot pad and shank are scored for a period of 14 days. The major disadvantages of this challenge model are the subjective judgement of gross foot pad and/or shank lesions, that it is very difficult to induce lesions in broilers, and that it causes animal suffering. Other reovirus challenge models are based on reisolation of the virus from different tissues or on scoring microscopic lesions in the tendons. Some disadvantages of these models are that they either cannot be used after vaccination with live reovirus because they cannot discriminate between vaccine and challenge virus or that the microscopic lesions scored need not necessarily be related to the challenge virus but may have been induced by other factors. Therefore, we have attempted to develop a reovirus challenge model that was an improvement on the existing ones, using isolation of reovirus from different organs followed by specific detection of the challenge virus with a monoclonal antibody that can discriminate between challenge and vaccine virus. The reovirus challenge model was examined in specific pathogen free (SPF) White Leghorn chickens and commercial broilers. In vivo studies were conducted to examine the efficacy of an attenuated reovirus vaccine in SPF White Leghorn chickens and commercial broilers with maternal immunity against reovirus. No challenge virus could be detected in any of the organs of the vaccinated chickens 3 and 10 days after challenge. In contrast, challenge virus could be isolated from the unvaccinated control group. At an increased challenge dose all unvaccinated challenge control birds were positive, while the vaccinated chickens were protected. It was shown that 1-day-old vaccination in the presence of maternal immunity was effective. It seemed that protection induced in broilers by the attenuated reovirus vaccine

  6. Direct Force Measurements of Receptor-Ligand Interactions on Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eibl, Robert H.

    The characterization of cell adhesion between two living cells at the level of single receptor-ligand bonds is an experimental challenge. This chapter describes how the extremely sensitive method of atomic force microscopy (AFM) based force spectroscopy can be applied to living cells in order to probe for cell-to-cell or cell-to-substrate interactions mediated by single pairs of adhesion receptors. In addition, it is outlined how single-molecule AFM force spectroscopy can be used to detect physiologic changes of an adhesion receptor in a living cell. This force spectroscopy allows us to detect in living cells rapidly changing, chemokine SDF-1 triggered activation states of single VLA-4 receptors. This recently developed AFM application will allow for the detailed investigation of the integrin-chemokine crosstalk of integrin activation mechanisms and on how other adhesion receptors are modulated in health and disease. As adhesion molecules, living cells and even bacteria can be studied by single-molecule AFM force spectroscopy, this method is set to become a powerful tool that can not only be used in biophysics, but in cell biology as well as in immunology and cancer research.

  7. Colorimetric detection of endogenous hydrogen sulfide production in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahn, Yong Jin; Lee, Young Ju; Lee, Jaemyeon; Lee, Doyeon; Park, Hun-Kuk; Lee, Gi-Ja

    2017-04-01

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has received great attention as a third gaseous signal transmitter, following nitric oxide and carbon monoxide. In particular, H2S plays an important role in the regulation of cancer cell biology. Therefore, the detection of endogenous H2S concentrations within biological systems can be helpful to understand the role of gasotransmitters in pathophysiology. Although a simple and inexpensive method for the detection of H2S has been developed, its direct and precise measurement in living cells remains a challenge. In this study, we introduced a simple, facile, and inexpensive colorimetric system for selective H2S detection in living cells using a silver-embedded Nafion/polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) membrane. This membrane could be easily applied onto a polystyrene microplate cover. First, we optimized the composition of the coating membrane, such as the PVP/Nafion mixing ratio and AgNO3 concentration, as well as the pH of the Na2S (H2S donor) solution and the reaction time. Next, the in vitro performance of a colorimetric detection assay utilizing the silver/Nafion/PVP membrane was evaluated utilizing a known concentration of Na2S standard solution both at room temperature and at 37 °C in a 5% CO2 incubator. As a result, the sensitivity of the colorimetric assay for H2S at 37 °C in the incubator (0.0056 Abs./μM Na2S, R2 = 0.9948) was similar to that at room temperature (0.0055 Abs./μM Na2S, R2 = 0.9967). Moreover, these assays were less sensitive to interference from compounds such as glutathione, L-cysteine (Cys), and dithiothreitol than to the H2S from Na2S. This assay based on the silver/Nafion/PVP membrane also showed excellent reproducibility (2.8% RSD). Finally, we successfully measured the endogenous H2S concentrations in live C6 glioma cells by s-(5‧-adenosyl)-L-methionine stimulation with and without Cys and L-homocysteine, utilizing the silver/Nafion/PVP membrane. In summary, colorimetric assays using silver

  8. African American kidney transplant patients’ perspectives on challenges in the living donation process

    PubMed Central

    Sieverdes, John C.; Nemeth, Lynne S.; Magwood, Gayenell S.; Baliga, Prabhakar K.; Chavin, Kenneth D.; Ruggiero, Ken J.; Treiber, Frank A.

    2015-01-01

    Context The increasing shortage of deceased donor kidneys suitable for African Americans highlights the critical need to increase living donations among African Americans. Little research has addressed African American transplant recipients’ perspectives on challenges and barriers related to the living donation process. Objective To understand the perspectives of African American recipients of deceased and living donor kidney transplants on challenges, barriers, and educational needs related to pursuing such transplants. Participants and Design A mixed-method design involved 27 African American kidney recipients (13 male) in 4 focus groups (2 per recipient type: 16 African American deceased donor and 11 living donor recipients) and questionnaires. Focus group transcripts were evaluated with NVivo 10.0 (QSR, International) by using inductive and deductive qualitative methods along with crystallization to develop themes of underlying barriers to the living donor kidney transplant process and were compared with the questionnaires. Results Four main themes were identified from groups: concerns, knowledge and learning, expectations of support, and communication. Many concerns for the donor were identified (eg, process too difficult, financial burden, effect on relationships). A general lack of knowledge about the donor process and lack of behavioral skills on how to approach others was noted. The latter was especially evident among deceased donor recipients. Findings from the questionnaires on myths and perceptions supported the lack of knowledge in a variety of domains, including donors’ surgical outcomes risks, costs of surgery, and impact on future health. Participants thought that an educational program led by an African American recipient of a living donor kidney transplant, including practice in approaching others, would increase the likelihood of transplant-eligible patients pursuing living donor kidney transplant. PMID:26107278

  9. [Bioethical challenges of stem cell tourism].

    PubMed

    Ventura-Juncá, Patricio; Erices, Alejandro; Santos, Manuel J

    2013-08-01

    Stem cells have drawn extraordinary attention from scientists and the general public due to their potential to generate effective therapies for incurable diseases. At the same time, the production of embryonic stem cells involves a serious ethical issue concerning the destruction of human embryos. Although adult stem cells and induced pluripotential cells do not pose this ethical objection, there are other bioethical challenges common to all types of stem cells related particularly to the clinical use of stem cells. Their clinical use should be based on clinical trials, and in special situations, medical innovation, both of which have particular ethical dimensions. The media has raised unfounded expectations in patients and the public about the real clinical benefits of stem cells. At the same time, the number of unregulated clinics is increasing around the world, making direct offers through Internet of unproven stem cell therapies that attract desperate patients that have not found solutions in standard medicine. This is what is called stem cells tourism. This article reviews this situation, its consequences and the need for international cooperation to establish effective regulations to prevent the exploitation of patients and to endanger the prestige of legitimate stem cell research.

  10. Targeting endogenous nuclear antigens by electrotransfer of monoclonal antibodies in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Freund, Guillaume; Sibler, Annie-Paule; Desplancq, Dominique; Oulad-Abdelghani, Mustapha; Vigneron, Marc; Gannon, Julian; Van Regenmortel, Marc H.; Weiss, Etienne

    2013-01-01

    Antibodies are valuable tools for functional studies in vitro, but their use in living cells remains challenging because they do not naturally cross the cell membrane. Here, we present a simple and highly efficient method for the intracytoplasmic delivery of any antibody into cultured cells. By following the fate of monoclonal antibodies that bind to nuclear antigens, it was possible to image endogenous targets and to show that inhibitory antibodies are able to induce cell growth suppression or cell death. Our electrotransfer system allowed the cancer cells we studied to be transduced without loss of viability and may have applications for a variety of intracellular immuno-interventions. PMID:23765067

  11. Five-color fluorescent imaging in living tumor cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Liang; Yang, Jie; Chu, Jun; Luo, Qingming; Zhang, Zhihong

    2008-12-01

    The fluorescent probes based on fluorescent proteins (FP) have been widely used to investigate the molecules of interest in living cells. It is well-known that the molecular events in the living cells are very complicate and all of the cell activities are involved by multi-molecular interaction. With the development of novel fluorescent protein mutants and imaging technology, the molecular signal in living cells could be detected accurately. In this study, with the appropriate targeting signals, the fluorescent proteins were localized to plasma membrane (Rac1-mCerulean), Golgi membrane (EYFP-go), ER membrane (RFP2-er), mitochondrial membrane (RFP1-mt). Cultured Hela cells were cotransfected with these four plasmids, and 36 h later, labeled with Hoechst33258 which located in the nucleus of a living cell. Using a confocal microscopy, with 405 nm, 458 nm and 514 nm laser lines employed respectively, a five-color fluorescent image was obtained in which five subcellular structures were clearly shown in living cells. The technique of multi-color imaging in a single cell provides a powerful tool to simultaneously study the multi-molecular events in living cells.

  12. Correlates of Immunity to Influenza as Determined by Challenge of Children with Live, Attenuated Influenza Vaccine

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Peter F.; Hoen, Anne G.; Ilyushina, Natalia A.; Brown, Eric P.; Ackerman, Margaret E.; Wieland-Alter, Wendy; Connor, Ruth I.; Jegaskanda, Sinthujan; Rosenberg-Hasson, Yael; Haynes, Brenda C.; Luke, Catherine J.; Subbarao, Kanta; Treanor, John J.

    2016-01-01

    Background. The efficacy of live, attenuated live attenuated influenza vaccine(LAIV) and inactivated influenza vaccine(IIV) is poorly explained by either single or composite immune responses to vaccination. Protective biomarkers were therefore studied in response to LAIV or IIV followed by LAIV challenge in children. Methods. Serum and mucosal responses to LAIV or IIV were analyzed using immunologic assays to assess both quantitative and functional responses. Cytokines and chemokines were measured in nasal washes collected before vaccination, on days 2, 4, and 7 after initial LAIV, and again after LAIV challenge using a 63-multiplex Luminex panel. Results. Patterns of immunity induced by LAIV and IIV were significantly different. Serum responses induced by IIV, including hemagglutination inhibition, did not correlate with detection or quantitation of LAIV on subsequent challenge. Modalities that induced sterilizing immunity seen after LAIV challenge could not be defined by any measurements of mucosal or serum antibodies induced by the initial LAIV immunization. No single cytokine or chemokine was predictive of protection. Conclusions. The mechanism of protective immunity observed after LAIV could not be defined, and traditional measurements of immunity to IIV did not correlate with protection against an LAIV challenge. PMID:27419180

  13. Detecting and Tracking Nonfluorescent Nanoparticles Probes in Live Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Gufeng; Fang, Ning

    2012-01-17

    Precisely imaging and tracking dynamic biological processes in live cells are crucial for both fundamental research in life sciences and biomedical applications. Nonfluorescent nanoparticles are emerging as important optical probes in live-cell imaging because of their excellent photostability, large optical cross sections, and low cytotoxicity. Here, we provide a review of recent development in optical imaging of nonfluorescent nanoparticle probes and their applications in dynamic tracking and biosensing in live cells. A brief discussion on cytotoxicity of nanoparticle probes is also provided.

  14. Imaging of living cells in real time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tychinsky, Vladimir P.; Koufal, Georgy E.; Perevedentseva, Elena V.; Vyshenskaia, Tatiana V.; Nikandrov, Serguei L.

    1996-12-01

    Parameters of intrinsic cell motility is one of the cell activity characteristics which can be measured in real-time. For evaluation of certain organelles velocity we propose to use high sensitivity of computer-aided phase microscope airyscan to local phase changes connected with refractive index. This method is based on periodical scanning of cell profile in direction perpendicular to organelles movement. Analysis of the obtained 2-dimensional time-coordinate matrix allows us to define organelle velocity in quasi-real time and areas of cell activity. The experiments with onion cells confirm the method applicability for cell activity investigation.

  15. Cell nucleus targeting for living cell extraction of nucleic acid associated proteins with intracellular nanoprobes of magnetic carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yi; Hu, Zhengyan; Qin, Hongqiang; Liu, Fangjie; Cheng, Kai; Wu, Ren'an; Zou, Hanfa

    2013-08-06

    Since nanoparticles could be ingested by cells naturally and target at a specific cellular location as designed, the extraction of intracellular proteins from living cells for large-scale analysis by nanoprobes seems to be ideally possible. Nucleic acid associated proteins (NAaP) take the crucial position during biological processes in maintaining and regulating gene structure and gene related behaviors, yet there are still challenges during the global investigation of intracellular NAaP, especially from living cells. In this work, a strategy to extract intracellular proteins from living cells with the magnetic carbon nanotube (oMWCNT@Fe3O4) as an intracellular probe is developed, to achieve the high throughput analysis of NAaP from living human hepatoma BEL-7402 cells with a mass spectrometry-based proteomic approach. Due to the specific intracellular localization of the magnetic carbon nanotubes around nuclei and its strong interaction with nucleic acids, the highly efficient extraction was realized for cellular NAaP from living cells, with the capability of identifying 2383 intracellular NAaP from only ca. 10,000 living cells. This method exhibited potential applications in dynamic and in situ analysis of intracellular proteins.

  16. Chemically tunable mucin chimeras assembled on living cells

    DOE PAGES

    Kramer, Jessica R.; Onoa, Bibiana; Bustamante, Carlos; ...

    2015-09-29

    Mucins are a family of secreted and transmembrane glycoproteins characterized by a massive domain of dense O-glycosylation on serine and threonine residues. Mucins are intimately involved in immunity and cancer, yet elucidation of the biological roles of their glycodomains has been complicated by their massive size, domain polymorphisms, and variable glycosylation patterns. Here we developed a synthetic route to a library of compositionally defined, high-molecular weight, dual end-functionalized mucin glycodomain constructs via N-carboxyanhydride polymerization. These glycopolypeptides are the first synthetic analogs to our knowledge to feature the native α-GalNAc linkage to serine with molecular weights similar to native mucins, solvingmore » a nearly 50-year synthetic challenge. Physical characterization of the mimics revealed insights into the structure and properties of mucins. The synthetic glycodomains were end-functionalized with an optical probe and a tetrazine moiety, which allowed site-specific bioorthogonal conjugation to an engineered membrane protein on live mammalian cells. Lastly, this strategy in protein engineering will open avenues to explore the biological roles of cell surface mucins.« less

  17. Chemically tunable mucin chimeras assembled on living cells

    SciTech Connect

    Kramer, Jessica R.; Onoa, Bibiana; Bustamante, Carlos; Bertozzi, Carolyn R.

    2015-09-29

    Mucins are a family of secreted and transmembrane glycoproteins characterized by a massive domain of dense O-glycosylation on serine and threonine residues. Mucins are intimately involved in immunity and cancer, yet elucidation of the biological roles of their glycodomains has been complicated by their massive size, domain polymorphisms, and variable glycosylation patterns. Here we developed a synthetic route to a library of compositionally defined, high-molecular weight, dual end-functionalized mucin glycodomain constructs via N-carboxyanhydride polymerization. These glycopolypeptides are the first synthetic analogs to our knowledge to feature the native α-GalNAc linkage to serine with molecular weights similar to native mucins, solving a nearly 50-year synthetic challenge. Physical characterization of the mimics revealed insights into the structure and properties of mucins. The synthetic glycodomains were end-functionalized with an optical probe and a tetrazine moiety, which allowed site-specific bioorthogonal conjugation to an engineered membrane protein on live mammalian cells. Lastly, this strategy in protein engineering will open avenues to explore the biological roles of cell surface mucins.

  18. Stretchable living materials and devices with hydrogel–elastomer hybrids hosting programmed cells

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xinyue; Tang, Tzu-Chieh; Tham, Eléonore; Yuk, Hyunwoo; Lin, Shaoting; Lu, Timothy K.; Zhao, Xuanhe

    2017-01-01

    Living systems, such as bacteria, yeasts, and mammalian cells, can be genetically programmed with synthetic circuits that execute sensing, computing, memory, and response functions. Integrating these functional living components into materials and devices will provide powerful tools for scientific research and enable new technological applications. However, it has been a grand challenge to maintain the viability, functionality, and safety of living components in freestanding materials and devices, which frequently undergo deformations during applications. Here, we report the design of a set of living materials and devices based on stretchable, robust, and biocompatible hydrogel–elastomer hybrids that host various types of genetically engineered bacterial cells. The hydrogel provides sustainable supplies of water and nutrients, and the elastomer is air-permeable, maintaining long-term viability and functionality of the encapsulated cells. Communication between different bacterial strains and with the environment is achieved via diffusion of molecules in the hydrogel. The high stretchability and robustness of the hydrogel–elastomer hybrids prevent leakage of cells from the living materials and devices, even under large deformations. We show functions and applications of stretchable living sensors that are responsive to multiple chemicals in a variety of form factors, including skin patches and gloves-based sensors. We further develop a quantitative model that couples transportation of signaling molecules and cellular response to aid the design of future living materials and devices. PMID:28202725

  19. Stretchable living materials and devices with hydrogel-elastomer hybrids hosting programmed cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xinyue; Tang, Tzu-Chieh; Tham, Eléonore; Yuk, Hyunwoo; Lin, Shaoting; Lu, Timothy K; Zhao, Xuanhe

    2017-02-28

    Living systems, such as bacteria, yeasts, and mammalian cells, can be genetically programmed with synthetic circuits that execute sensing, computing, memory, and response functions. Integrating these functional living components into materials and devices will provide powerful tools for scientific research and enable new technological applications. However, it has been a grand challenge to maintain the viability, functionality, and safety of living components in freestanding materials and devices, which frequently undergo deformations during applications. Here, we report the design of a set of living materials and devices based on stretchable, robust, and biocompatible hydrogel-elastomer hybrids that host various types of genetically engineered bacterial cells. The hydrogel provides sustainable supplies of water and nutrients, and the elastomer is air-permeable, maintaining long-term viability and functionality of the encapsulated cells. Communication between different bacterial strains and with the environment is achieved via diffusion of molecules in the hydrogel. The high stretchability and robustness of the hydrogel-elastomer hybrids prevent leakage of cells from the living materials and devices, even under large deformations. We show functions and applications of stretchable living sensors that are responsive to multiple chemicals in a variety of form factors, including skin patches and gloves-based sensors. We further develop a quantitative model that couples transportation of signaling molecules and cellular response to aid the design of future living materials and devices.

  20. Living on a flammable planet: interdisciplinary, cross-scalar and varied cultural lessons, prospects and challenges.

    PubMed

    Roos, Christopher I; Scott, Andrew C; Belcher, Claire M; Chaloner, William G; Aylen, Jonathan; Bird, Rebecca Bliege; Coughlan, Michael R; Johnson, Bart R; Johnston, Fay H; McMorrow, Julia; Steelman, Toddi

    2016-06-05

    Living with fire is a challenge for human communities because they are influenced by socio-economic, political, ecological and climatic processes at various spatial and temporal scales. Over the course of 2 days, the authors discussed how communities could live with fire challenges at local, national and transnational scales. Exploiting our diverse, international and interdisciplinary expertise, we outline generalizable properties of fire-adaptive communities in varied settings where cultural knowledge of fire is rich and diverse. At the national scale, we discussed policy and management challenges for countries that have diminishing fire knowledge, but for whom global climate change will bring new fire problems. Finally, we assessed major fire challenges that transcend national political boundaries, including the health burden of smoke plumes and the climate consequences of wildfires. It is clear that to best address the broad range of fire problems, a holistic wildfire scholarship must develop common agreement in working terms and build across disciplines. We must also communicate our understanding of fire and its importance to the media, politicians and the general public.This article is part of the themed issue 'The interaction of fire and mankind'.

  1. Micropatterning tractional forces in living cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Ning; Ostuni, Emanuele; Whitesides, George M.; Ingber, Donald E.

    2002-01-01

    Here we describe a method for quantifying traction in cells that are physically constrained within micron-sized adhesive islands of defined shape and size on the surface of flexible polyacrylamide gels that contain fluorescent microbeads (0.2-microm diameter). Smooth muscle cells were plated onto square (50 x 50 microm) or circular (25- or 50-microm diameter) adhesive islands that were created on the surface of the gels by applying a collagen coating through microengineered holes in an elastomeric membrane that was later removed. Adherent cells spread to take on the size and shape of the islands and cell tractions were quantitated by mapping displacement fields of the fluorescent microbeads within the gel. Cells on round islands did not exhibit any preferential direction of force application, but they exerted their strongest traction at sites where they formed protrusions. When cells were confined to squares, traction was highest in the corners both in the absence and presence of the contractile agonist, histamine, and cell protrusions were also observed in these regions. Quantitation of the mean traction exerted by cells cultured on the different islands revealed that cell tension increased as cell spreading was promoted. These results provide a mechanical basis for past studies that demonstrated a similar correlation between spreading and growth within various anchorage-dependent cells. This new approach for analyzing the spatial distribution of mechanical forces beneath individual cells that are experimentally constrained to defined sizes and shapes may provide additional insight into the biophysical basis of cell regulation. Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  2. From personal tragedy to personal challenge: responses to stigma among sober living home residents and operators

    PubMed Central

    Heslin, Kevin C.; Singzon, Trudy; Aimiuwu, Otaren; Sheridan, Dave; Hamilton, Alison

    2011-01-01

    Sober living homes for people attempting to maintain abstinence from alcohol and drugs can act as a buffer against the high rates of substance misuse that are endemic to many urban environments. Sober living homes and other group homes for people with disabilities have faced persistent opposition from neighborhood associations, which raises the question of stigma. This article describes the responses of sober living home residents and operators to the threat of stigma across a diverse set of neighborhoods. Ten focus groups were conducted with 68 residents and operators of 35 sober living homes in Los Angeles County, California, between January 2009 and March 2010. Results showed that few residents reported experiences of blatant stigmatization by neighbors; however, they were well aware of the stereotypes that could be ascribed to them. Despite this potential stigma, residents developed valued identities as helpers in their communities, providing advice to neighbors whose family or friends had substance use problems, and organizing community service activities to improve the appearance of their neighborhoods. With their attention to local context, sober living home residents and operators challenge the personal tragedy approach of much traditional advocacy on health-related stigma. PMID:21707663

  3. Super-resolution Microscopy Approaches for Live Cell Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Godin, Antoine G.; Lounis, Brahim; Cognet, Laurent

    2014-01-01

    By delivering optical images with spatial resolutions below the diffraction limit, several super-resolution fluorescence microscopy techniques opened new opportunities to study biological structures with details approaching molecular structure sizes. They have now become methods of choice for imaging proteins and their nanoscale dynamic organizations in live cells. In this mini-review, we describe and compare the main far-field super-resolution approaches that allow studying endogenous or overexpressed proteins in live cells. PMID:25418158

  4. Imaging cell biology in live animals: ready for prime time.

    PubMed

    Weigert, Roberto; Porat-Shliom, Natalie; Amornphimoltham, Panomwat

    2013-06-24

    Time-lapse fluorescence microscopy is one of the main tools used to image subcellular structures in living cells. Yet for decades it has been applied primarily to in vitro model systems. Thanks to the most recent advancements in intravital microscopy, this approach has finally been extended to live rodents. This represents a major breakthrough that will provide unprecedented new opportunities to study mammalian cell biology in vivo and has already provided new insight in the fields of neurobiology, immunology, and cancer biology.

  5. Inferring transient particle transport dynamics in live cells.

    PubMed

    Monnier, Nilah; Barry, Zachary; Park, Hye Yoon; Su, Kuan-Chung; Katz, Zachary; English, Brian P; Dey, Arkajit; Pan, Keyao; Cheeseman, Iain M; Singer, Robert H; Bathe, Mark

    2015-09-01

    Live-cell imaging and particle tracking provide rich information on mechanisms of intracellular transport. However, trajectory analysis procedures to infer complex transport dynamics involving stochastic switching between active transport and diffusive motion are lacking. We applied Bayesian model selection to hidden Markov modeling to infer transient transport states from trajectories of mRNA-protein complexes in live mouse hippocampal neurons and metaphase kinetochores in dividing human cells. The software is available at http://hmm-bayes.org/.

  6. Spatial dynamics of chromosome translocations in living cells.

    PubMed

    Roukos, Vassilis; Voss, Ty C; Schmidt, Christine K; Lee, Seungtaek; Wangsa, Darawalee; Misteli, Tom

    2013-08-09

    Chromosome translocations are a hallmark of cancer cells. We have developed an experimental system to visualize the formation of translocations in living cells and apply it to characterize the spatial and dynamic properties of translocation formation. We demonstrate that translocations form within hours of the occurrence of double-strand breaks (DSBs) and that their formation is cell cycle-independent. Translocations form preferentially between prepositioned genome elements, and perturbation of key factors of the DNA repair machinery uncouples DSB pairing from translocation formation. These observations generate a spatiotemporal framework for the formation of translocations in living cells.

  7. Introduction of genes into living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishimura, E.; Nagai, A.; Tomimasu, T.; Kina, T.; Fujimoto, S.; Katsura, Y.

    1998-02-01

    One of our main subjects is an application of the FEL to gene therapy of genetic diseases, immunodeficiency syndromes and cancer. In this study, using the FEL, we tried to establish a model system for introducing genes into the stem cells from which all blood cells are derived. Our aim is to specifically mark the stem cells with monoclonal antibodies which are conjugated with efficient FEL absorbers. Cells are then irradiated with FEL at a wavelength corresponding to the absorption energy of the absorber. We speculate that the gap formation of cell membrane will occur, caused by the thermal shock due to the absorption of the FEL energy. As an animal model for gene therapy, we tried to transfer the RAG-2 genes into hematopoietic stem cells from RAG-2 deficient mice, which have severe immunodeficiency because of the lack of RAG-2 gene required for lymphocyte development. As the results by this construct, the infant lymphocytes (T and B cells) could be observed in the thymus of the RAG-2 deficient mice 2 weeks post-operative.

  8. Live cell isolation by laser microdissection with gravity transfer.

    PubMed

    Podgorny, Oleg V

    2013-05-01

    Laser microdissection by pulsing ultraviolet laser allows the isolation and recultivation of live cells based on morphological features or/and fluorescent labelling from adherent cell cultures. Previous investigations described only the use of the laser microdissection and pressure catapulting (LMPC) for live cell isolation. But LMPC requires complex manipulations and some skill. Furthermore, single-cell cloning using laser microdissection has not yet been demonstrated. The first evidence of successful application of laser microdissection with gravity transfer (LMDGT) for capturing and recultivation of live cells is presented. A new strategy for LMDGT is presented because of the failure to reproduce the manufacturer's protocol. Using the new strategy, successful capturing and recultivation of circle-shaped samples from confluent monolayer of HeLa cells was demonstrated. It was found that LMDGT is easier than LMPC because it doesn't require personal participation of investigator in transferring of isolated samples to final culture dishes. Moreover, for the first time, the generation of clonal colonies from single live cells isolated by laser microdissection was demonstrated. Data obtained in this study confirm that LMDGT is a reliable and high-yield method allowing isolation and expansion of both cell clusters and single cells from adherent cell cultures.

  9. Live imaging reveals the progenitors and cell dynamics of limb regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Alwes, Frederike; Enjolras, Camille; Averof, Michalis

    2016-01-01

    Regeneration is a complex and dynamic process, mobilizing diverse cell types and remodelling tissues over long time periods. Tracking cell fate and behaviour during regeneration in active adult animals is especially challenging. Here, we establish continuous live imaging of leg regeneration at single-cell resolution in the crustacean Parhyale hawaiensis. By live recordings encompassing the first 4-5 days after amputation, we capture the cellular events that contribute to wound closure and morphogenesis of regenerating legs with unprecedented resolution and temporal detail. Using these recordings we are able to track cell lineages, to generate fate maps of the blastema and to identify the progenitors of regenerated epidermis. We find that there are no specialized stem cells for the epidermis. Most epidermal cells in the distal part of the leg stump proliferate, acquire new positional values and contribute to new segments in the regenerating leg. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19766.001 PMID:27776632

  10. Tracking single molecules at work in living cells.

    PubMed

    Kusumi, Akihiro; Tsunoyama, Taka A; Hirosawa, Kohichiro M; Kasai, Rinshi S; Fujiwara, Takahiro K

    2014-07-01

    Methods for imaging and tracking single molecules conjugated with fluorescent probes, called single-molecule tracking (SMT), are now providing researchers with the unprecedented ability to directly observe molecular behaviors and interactions in living cells. Current SMT methods are achieving almost the ultimate spatial precision and time resolution for tracking single molecules, determined by the currently available dyes. In cells, various molecular interactions and reactions occur as stochastic and probabilistic processes. SMT provides an ideal way to directly track these processes by observing individual molecules at work in living cells, leading to totally new views of the biochemical and molecular processes used by cells whether in signal transduction, gene regulation or formation and disintegration of macromolecular complexes. Here we review SMT methods, summarize the recent results obtained by SMT, including related superresolution microscopy data, and describe the special concerns when SMT applications are shifted from the in vitro paradigms to living cells.

  11. Live Cell Characterization of DNA Aggregation Delivered through Lipofection

    PubMed Central

    Mieruszynski, Stephen; Briggs, Candida; Digman, Michelle A.; Gratton, Enrico; Jones, Mark R

    2015-01-01

    DNA trafficking phenomena, such as information on where and to what extent DNA aggregation occurs, have yet to be fully characterised in the live cell. Here we characterise the aggregation of DNA when delivered through lipofection by applying the Number and Brightness (N&B) approach. The N&B analysis demonstrates extensive aggregation throughout the live cell with DNA clusters in the extremity of the cell and peri-nuclear areas. Once within the nucleus aggregation had decreased 3-fold. In addition, we show that increasing serum concentration of cell media results in greater cytoplasmic aggregation. Further, the effects of the DNA fragment size on aggregation was explored, where larger DNA constructs exhibited less aggregation. This study demonstrates the first quantification of DNA aggregation when delivered through lipofection in live cells. In addition, this study has presents a model for alternative uses of this imaging approach, which was originally developed to study protein oligomerization and aggregation. PMID:26013547

  12. Analysis of live cell images: Methods, tools and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Nketia, Thomas A; Sailem, Heba; Rohde, Gustavo; Machiraju, Raghu; Rittscher, Jens

    2017-02-15

    Advances in optical microscopy, biosensors and cell culturing technologies have transformed live cell imaging. Thanks to these advances live cell imaging plays an increasingly important role in basic biology research as well as at all stages of drug development. Image analysis methods are needed to extract quantitative information from these vast and complex data sets. The aim of this review is to provide an overview of available image analysis methods for live cell imaging, in particular required preprocessing image segmentation, cell tracking and data visualisation methods. The potential opportunities recent advances in machine learning, especially deep learning, and computer vision provide are being discussed. This review includes overview of the different available software packages and toolkits.

  13. Classic "broken cell" techniques and newer live cell methods for cell cycle assessment.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Lindsay; Bortone, Dante S; Lim, Curtis; Zambon, Alexander C

    2013-05-15

    Many common, important diseases are either caused or exacerbated by hyperactivation (e.g., cancer) or inactivation (e.g., heart failure) of the cell division cycle. A better understanding of the cell cycle is critical for interpreting numerous types of physiological changes in cells. Moreover, new insights into how to control it will facilitate new therapeutics for a variety of diseases and new avenues in regenerative medicine. The progression of cells through the four main phases of their division cycle [G(0)/G(1), S (DNA synthesis), G(2), and M (mitosis)] is a highly conserved process orchestrated by several pathways (e.g., transcription, phosphorylation, nuclear import/export, and protein ubiquitination) that coordinate a core cell cycle pathway. This core pathway can also receive inputs that are cell type and cell niche dependent. "Broken cell" methods (e.g., use of labeled nucleotide analogs) to assess for cell cycle activity have revealed important insights regarding the cell cycle but lack the ability to assess living cells in real time (longitudinal studies) and with single-cell resolution. Moreover, such methods often require cell synchronization, which can perturb the pathway under study. Live cell cycle sensors can be used at single-cell resolution in living cells, intact tissue, and whole animals. Use of these more recently available sensors has the potential to reveal physiologically relevant insights regarding the normal and perturbed cell division cycle.

  14. Living Toroids - Cells on Toroidal Surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Ya-Wen; Angelini, Thomas; Marquez, Samantha; Kim, Harold; Fernandez-Nieves, Alberto

    2014-03-01

    Cellular environment influences a multitude of cellular functions by providing chemical and physical signals that modulate cell behavior, dynamics, development, and eventually survival. Substrate mechanics has been recognized as one of the important physical cues that governs cell behavior at single cell level as well as in collective cell motion. Past research has suggested several contact-guided behaviors to be the result of surface curvature. However, studies on the effect of curvature are relatively scarce likely due to the difficulty in generating substrates with well-defined curvature. Here we describe the generation of toroidal droplets, which unlike spherical droplets, have regions of both positive and negative Gaussian curvature. Additionally, the range of curvatures can be controlled by varying the size and aspect ratio of the torus. Cells are either encapsulated inside toroidal droplets or located on toroidal hydrogel surfaces. Preliminary studies use B. Subtilis to study the organization of bacteria biofilms. When confined in droplets surrounded by yield-stress fluid, bacteria self-organize into heterogeneous biofilm at fluid- substrate interface. It is found that the surface curvature in the sub-millimeter scale has little effect on biofilm architecture.

  15. Fractal Characterization of Chromatin Decompaction in Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Ji; Stypula-Cyrus, Yolanda; Blaha, Catherine S.; Roy, Hemant K.; Backman, Vadim

    2015-01-01

    Chromatin organization has a fundamental impact on the whole spectrum of genomic functions. Quantitative characterization of the chromatin structure, particularly at submicron length scales where chromatin fractal globules are formed, is critical to understanding this structure-function relationship. Such analysis is currently challenging due to the diffraction-limited resolution of conventional light microscopy. We herein present an optical approach termed inverse spectroscopic optical coherence tomography to characterize the mass density fractality of chromatin, and we apply the technique to observe chromatin decompaction in live cells. The technique makes it possible for the first time, to our knowledge, to sense intracellular morphology with length-scale sensitivity from ∼30 to 450 nm, thus primarily probing the higher-order chromatin structure, without resolving the actual structures. We used chromatin decompaction due to inhibition of histone deacytelases and measured the subsequent changes in the fractal dimension of the intracellular structure. The results were confirmed by transmission electron microscopy and confocal fluorescence microscopy. PMID:26636933

  16. Nanometre-scale thermometry in a living cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kucsko, G.; Maurer, P. C.; Yao, N. Y.; Kubo, M.; Noh, H. J.; Lo, P. K.; Park, H.; Lukin, M. D.

    2013-08-01

    Sensitive probing of temperature variations on nanometre scales is an outstanding challenge in many areas of modern science and technology. In particular, a thermometer capable of subdegree temperature resolution over a large range of temperatures as well as integration within a living system could provide a powerful new tool in many areas of biological, physical and chemical research. Possibilities range from the temperature-induced control of gene expression and tumour metabolism to the cell-selective treatment of disease and the study of heat dissipation in integrated circuits. By combining local light-induced heat sources with sensitive nanoscale thermometry, it may also be possible to engineer biological processes at the subcellular level. Here we demonstrate a new approach to nanoscale thermometry that uses coherent manipulation of the electronic spin associated with nitrogen-vacancy colour centres in diamond. Our technique makes it possible to detect temperature variations as small as 1.8 mK (a sensitivity of 9 mK Hz-1/2) in an ultrapure bulk diamond sample. Using nitrogen-vacancy centres in diamond nanocrystals (nanodiamonds), we directly measure the local thermal environment on length scales as short as 200 nanometres. Finally, by introducing both nanodiamonds and gold nanoparticles into a single human embryonic fibroblast, we demonstrate temperature-gradient control and mapping at the subcellular level, enabling unique potential applications in life sciences.

  17. Nanometre-scale thermometry in a living cell.

    PubMed

    Kucsko, G; Maurer, P C; Yao, N Y; Kubo, M; Noh, H J; Lo, P K; Park, H; Lukin, M D

    2013-08-01

    Sensitive probing of temperature variations on nanometre scales is an outstanding challenge in many areas of modern science and technology. In particular, a thermometer capable of subdegree temperature resolution over a large range of temperatures as well as integration within a living system could provide a powerful new tool in many areas of biological, physical and chemical research. Possibilities range from the temperature-induced control of gene expression and tumour metabolism to the cell-selective treatment of disease and the study of heat dissipation in integrated circuits. By combining local light-induced heat sources with sensitive nanoscale thermometry, it may also be possible to engineer biological processes at the subcellular level. Here we demonstrate a new approach to nanoscale thermometry that uses coherent manipulation of the electronic spin associated with nitrogen-vacancy colour centres in diamond. Our technique makes it possible to detect temperature variations as small as 1.8 mK (a sensitivity of 9 mK Hz(-1/2)) in an ultrapure bulk diamond sample. Using nitrogen-vacancy centres in diamond nanocrystals (nanodiamonds), we directly measure the local thermal environment on length scales as short as 200 nanometres. Finally, by introducing both nanodiamonds and gold nanoparticles into a single human embryonic fibroblast, we demonstrate temperature-gradient control and mapping at the subcellular level, enabling unique potential applications in life sciences.

  18. Harnessing molecular motors for nanoscale pulldown in live cells.

    PubMed

    Bird, Jonathan E; Barzik, Melanie; Drummond, Meghan C; Sutton, Daniel C; Goodman, Spencer M; Morozko, Eva L; Cole, Stacey M; Boukhvalova, Alexandra K; Skidmore, Jennifer; Syam, Diana; Wilson, Elizabeth A; Fitzgerald, Tracy; Rehman, Atteeq U; Martin, Donna M; Boger, Erich T; Belyantseva, Inna A; Friedman, Thomas B

    2017-02-01

    Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) regulate assembly of macromolecular complexes, yet remain challenging to study within the native cytoplasm where they normally exert their biological effect. Here we miniaturize the concept of affinity pulldown, a gold-standard in vitro PPI interrogation technique, to perform nanoscale pulldowns (NanoSPDs) within living cells. NanoSPD hijacks the normal process of intracellular trafficking by myosin motors to forcibly pull fluorescently tagged protein complexes along filopodial actin filaments. Using dual-color total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, we demonstrate complex formation by showing that bait and prey molecules are simultaneously trafficked and actively concentrated into a nanoscopic volume at the tips of filopodia. The resulting molecular traffic jams at filopodial tips amplify fluorescence intensities and allow PPIs to be interrogated using standard epifluorescence microscopy. A rigorous quantification framework and software tool are provided to statistically evaluate NanoSPD data sets. We demonstrate the capabilities of NanoSPD for a range of nuclear and cytoplasmic PPIs implicated in human deafness, in addition to dissecting these interactions using domain mapping and mutagenesis experiments. The NanoSPD methodology is extensible for use with other fluorescent molecules, in addition to proteins, and the platform can be easily scaled for high-throughput applications.

  19. Quantum cooperative process in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finkel, Robert

    2006-03-01

    A model of a quantum cooperative process has accurately accounted for various quantitative observations.^1 That investigation considered chemical oscillations to be generated by generic quantum oscillators producing discrete quanta with well-defined energy and wavelength. The current work extends the theory by postulating that these oscillations arise from repetitive electron transfers in membranes. We find this produces a limit cycle completely consistent with the hypothetical generic oscillators, accurately reproduces the results of microwave irradiation experiments on yeast, and addresses limits for the smallest possible cell sizes. Questions of coherence in cells and implications for molecular information transfers are briefly considered. ^1R.W. Finkel, J. Theor. Biol. in press.

  20. Immunization with live Neisseria lactamica protects mice against meningococcal challenge and can elicit serum bactericidal antibodies.

    PubMed

    Li, Yanwen; Zhang, Qian; Winterbotham, Megan; Mowe, Eva; Gorringe, Andrew; Tang, Christoph M

    2006-11-01

    Natural immunity against Neisseria meningitidis is thought to develop following nasopharyngeal colonization with this bacterium or other microbes expressing cross-reactive antigens. Neisseria lactamica is a commensal of the upper respiratory tract which is often carried by infants and young children; epidemiological evidence indicates that colonization with this bacterium can elicit serum bactericidal activity (SBA) against Neisseria meningitidis, the most validated correlate of protective immunity. Here we demonstrate experimentally that immunization of mice with live N. lactamica protects animals against lethal meningococcal challenge and that some, but not all, strains of N. lactamica elicit detectable SBA in immunized animals regardless of the serogroup of N. meningitidis. While it is unlikely that immunization with live N. lactamica will be implemented as a vaccine against meningococcal disease, understanding the basis for the induction of cross-protective immunity and SBA should be valuable in the design of subunit vaccines for the prevention of this important human infection.

  1. Live-cell migration and adhesion turnover assays.

    PubMed

    Lacoste, J; Young, K; Brown, Claire M

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescence microscopy has revolutionized the way live-cell imaging is achieved. At the same time, it is also potentially harmful to a living specimen. Therefore, the specimen must be monitored for viability and health before, during, and after imaging sessions. Methods for monitoring cell viability and health will be discussed in this chapter. Another key to successful live-cell imaging is to minimize light exposure as much as possible. A summary of strategies for minimizing light exposure including maximizing the light throughput of the microscope and the sensitivity of light detection is presented. Various fluorescence microscopy techniques are presented with a focus on how the light is delivered to the sample (i.e., light density) and pros and cons for use with living specimens. The reader is also directed to other publications that go into these topics in more detail. Methods are described on how to prepare samples for single cell migration assays, how to measure cell migration rates (e.g., bright-field, semi-automated, and automated), and how to measure focal adhesion turnover rates. Details of how to correct images for background intensity and field-illumination uniformity artifacts for quantitative imaging are also described. Overall, this chapter will be helpful to scientists who are interested in imaging live specimens using fluorescence microscopy techniques. It will be of particular interest to anyone wanting to perform quantitative fluorescence imaging, and wanting to measure cell migration rates, and focal adhesion dynamics.

  2. A microfluidic live cell assay to study anthrax toxin induced cell lethality assisted by conditioned medium

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Jie; Cai, Changzu; Yu, Zhilong; Pang, Yuhong; Zhou, Ying; Qian, Lili; Wei, Wensheng; Huang, Yanyi

    2015-01-01

    It is technically challenging to investigate the function of secreted protein in real time by supply of conditioned medium that contains secreted protein of interest. The internalization of anthrax toxin is facilitated by a secreted protein Dickkopf-1 (DKK1) and its receptor, and eventually leads to cell lethality. To monitor the dynamic interplay between these components in live cells, we use an integrated microfluidic device to perform the cell viability assays with real-time controlled culture microenvironment in parallel. Conditioned medium, which contains the secreted proteins from specific cell lines, can be continuously pumped towards the cells that exposed to toxin. The exogenous DKK1 secreted from distant cells is able to rescue the sensitivity to toxin for those DKK1-knocked-down cells. This high-throughput assay allows us to precisely quantify the dynamic interaction between key components that cause cell death, and provide independent evidence of the function of DKK1 in the complex process of anthrax toxin internalization. PMID:25731605

  3. Brownian Motion and the Temperament of Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsekov, Roumen; Lensen, Marga C.

    2013-07-01

    The migration of living cells usually obeys the laws of Brownian motion. While the latter is due to the thermal motion of the surrounding matter, the locomotion of cells is generally associated with their vitality. We study what drives cell migration and how to model memory effects in the Brownian motion of cells. The concept of temperament is introduced as an effective biophysical parameter driving the motion of living biological entities in analogy with the physical parameter of temperature, which dictates the movement of lifeless physical objects. The locomemory of cells is also studied via the generalized Langevin equation. We explore the possibility of describing cell locomemory via the Brownian self-similarity concept. An heuristic expression for the diffusion coefficient of cells on structured surfaces is derived.

  4. Quantitative reflection contrast microscopy of living cells

    PubMed Central

    1979-01-01

    Mammalian cells in culture (BHK-21, PtK2, Friend, human flia, and glioma cells) have been observed by reflection contrast microscopy. Images of cells photographed at two different wavelengths (546 and 436 nm) or at two different angles of incidence allowed discrimination between reflected light and light that was both reflected and modulated by interference. Interference is involved when a change in reflected intensity (relative to glass/medium background reflected intensity) occurs on changing either the illumination wavelength or the reflection incidence angle. In cases where interference occurs, refractive indices can be determined at points where the optical path difference is known, by solving the given interference equation. Where cells are at least 50 nm distant from the glass substrate, intensities are also influenced by that distance as well as by the light's angle of incidence and wavelength. The reflected intensity at the glass/medium interface is used as a standard in calculating the refractive index of the cortical cytoplasm. Refractive indices were found to be higher (1.38--1.40) at points of focal contact, where stress fibers terminate, than in areas of close contact (1.354--1.368). In areas of the cortical cytoplasm, between focal contacts, not adherent to the glass substrate, refractive indices between 1.353 and 1.368 were found. This was thought to result from a microfilamentous network within the cortical cytoplasm. Intimate attachment of cells to their substrate is assumed to be characterized by a lack of an intermediate layer of culture medium. PMID:389938

  5. Suppressing active replication of a live attenuated simian immunodeficiency virus vaccine does not abrogate protection from challenge

    SciTech Connect

    Gabriel, Benjamin; Fiebig, Uwe; Hohn, Oliver; Plesker, Roland; Coulibaly, Cheick; Cichutek, Klaus; Mühlebach, Michael D.; Bannert, Norbert; Kurth, Reinhard; Norley, Stephen

    2016-02-15

    Although safety concerns preclude the use of live attenuated HIV vaccines in humans, they provide a useful system for identifying the elusive correlates of protective immunity in the SIV/macaque animal model. However, a number of pieces of evidence suggest that protection may result from prior occupancy of susceptible target cells by the vaccine virus rather than the immune response. To address this, we developed a Nef-deletion variant of an RT-SHIV whose active replication could be shut off by treatment with RT-inhibitors. Groups of macaques were inoculated with the ∆Nef-RT-SHIV and immune responses allowed to develop before antiretroviral treatment and subsequent challenge with wild-type SIVmac239. Vaccinated animals either resisted infection fully or significantly controlled the subsequent viremia. However, there was no difference between animals undergoing replication of the vaccine virus and those without. This strongly suggests that competition for available target cells does not play a role in protection. - Highlights: • A Nef-deleted RT-SHIV was used as a live attenuated vaccine in macaques. • Vaccine virus replication was shut down to investigate its role in protection. • Ongoing vaccine virus replication did not appear to be necessary for protection. • An analysis of T- and B-cell responses failed to identify a correlate of protection.

  6. Selective chemical imaging of static actin in live cells.

    PubMed

    Milroy, Lech-Gustav; Rizzo, Stefano; Calderon, Abram; Ellinger, Bernhard; Erdmann, Silke; Mondry, Justine; Verveer, Peter; Bastiaens, Philippe; Waldmann, Herbert; Dehmelt, Leif; Arndt, Hans-Dieter

    2012-05-23

    We have characterized rationally designed and optimized analogues of the actin-stabilizing natural products jasplakinolide and chondramide C. Efficient actin staining was achieved in fixed permeabilized and non-permeabilized cells using different combinations of dye and linker length, thus highlighting the degree of molecular flexibility of the natural product scaffold. Investigations into synthetically accessible, non-toxic analogues have led to the characterization of a powerful cell-permeable probe to selectively image static, long-lived actin filaments against dynamic F-actin and monomeric G-actin populations in live cells, with negligible disruption of rapid actin dynamics.

  7. Cytokinesis: Going Super-Resolution in Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yajun; Wu, Jian-Qiu

    2017-01-01

    Super-resolution fluorescence microscopy has emerged as a powerful tool for studying molecular organization, but mostly in fixed cells. New work using high-speed fluorescence photoactivation localization microscopy now reveals the organization of cytokinesis nodes and contractile rings in live fission yeast cells. PMID:27825453

  8. Understanding dynamic changes in live cell adhesion with neutron reflectometry

    SciTech Connect

    Junghans, Ann; Waltman, Mary Jo; Smith, Hillary L.; Pocivavsek, Luka; Zebda, Noureddine; Birukov, Konstantin; Viapiano, Mariano; Majewski, Jaroslaw

    2014-12-10

    In this study, neutron reflectometry (NR) was used to examine various live cells' adhesion to quartz substrates under different environmental conditions, including flow stress. To the best of our knowledge, these measurements represent the first successful visualization and quantization of the interface between live cells and a substrate with sub-nanometer resolution. In our first experiments, we examined live mouse fibroblast cells as opposed to past experiments using supported lipids, proteins, or peptide layers with no associated cells. We continued the NR studies of cell adhesion by investigating endothelial monolayers and glioblastoma cells under dynamic flow conditions. We demonstrated that neutron reflectometry is a powerful tool to study the strength of cellular layer adhesion in living tissues, which is a key factor in understanding the physiology of cell interactions and conditions leading to abnormal or disease circumstances. Continuative measurements, such as investigating changes in tumor cell — surface contact of various glioblastomas, could impact advancements in tumor treatments. In principle, this can help us to identify changes that correlate with tumor invasiveness. Pursuit of these studies can have significant medical impact on the understanding of complex biological problems and their effective treatment, e.g. for the development of targeted anti-invasive therapies.

  9. Understanding dynamic changes in live cell adhesion with neutron reflectometry

    DOE PAGES

    Junghans, Ann; Waltman, Mary Jo; Smith, Hillary L.; ...

    2014-12-10

    In this study, neutron reflectometry (NR) was used to examine various live cells' adhesion to quartz substrates under different environmental conditions, including flow stress. To the best of our knowledge, these measurements represent the first successful visualization and quantization of the interface between live cells and a substrate with sub-nanometer resolution. In our first experiments, we examined live mouse fibroblast cells as opposed to past experiments using supported lipids, proteins, or peptide layers with no associated cells. We continued the NR studies of cell adhesion by investigating endothelial monolayers and glioblastoma cells under dynamic flow conditions. We demonstrated that neutronmore » reflectometry is a powerful tool to study the strength of cellular layer adhesion in living tissues, which is a key factor in understanding the physiology of cell interactions and conditions leading to abnormal or disease circumstances. Continuative measurements, such as investigating changes in tumor cell — surface contact of various glioblastomas, could impact advancements in tumor treatments. In principle, this can help us to identify changes that correlate with tumor invasiveness. Pursuit of these studies can have significant medical impact on the understanding of complex biological problems and their effective treatment, e.g. for the development of targeted anti-invasive therapies.« less

  10. Understanding dynamic changes in live cell adhesion with neutron reflectometry

    PubMed Central

    JUNGHANS, ANN; WALTMAN, MARY JO; SMITH, HILLARY L.; POCIVAVSEK, LUKA; ZEBDA, NOUREDDINE; BIRUKOV, KONSTANTIN; VIAPIANO, MARIANO; MAJEWSKI, JAROSLAW

    2015-01-01

    Neutron reflectometry (NR) was used to examine various live cells adhesion to quartz substrates under different environmental conditions, including flow stress. To the best of our knowledge, these measurements represent the first successful visualization and quantization of the interface between live cells and a substrate with sub-nanometer resolution. In our first experiments, we examined live mouse fibroblast cells as opposed to past experiments using supported lipids, proteins, or peptide layers with no associated cells. We continued the NR studies of cell adhesion by investigating endothelial monolayers and glioblastoma cells under dynamic flow conditions. We demonstrated that neutron reflectometry is a powerful tool to study the strength of cellular layer adhesion in living tissues, which is a key factor in understanding the physiology of cell interactions and conditions leading to abnormal or disease circumstances. Continuative measurements, such as investigating changes in tumor cell – surface contact of various glioblastomas, could impact advancements in tumor treatments. In principle, this can help us to identify changes that correlate with tumor invasiveness. Pursuit of these studies can have significant medical impact on the understanding of complex biological problems and their effective treatment, e.g. for the development of targeted anti-invasive therapies. PMID:25705067

  11. Understanding dynamic changes in live cell adhesion with neutron reflectometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Junghans, Ann; Waltman, Mary Jo; Smith, Hillary L.; Pocivavsek, Luka; Zebda, Noureddine; Birukov, Konstantin; Viapiano, Mariano; Majewski, Jaroslaw

    2014-12-01

    Neutron reflectometry (NR) was used to examine various live cells' adhesion to quartz substrates under different environmental conditions, including flow stress. To the best of our knowledge, these measurements represent the first successful visualization and quantization of the interface between live cells and a substrate with sub-nanometer resolution. In our first experiments, we examined live mouse fibroblast cells as opposed to past experiments using supported lipids, proteins, or peptide layers with no associated cells. We continued the NR studies of cell adhesion by investigating endothelial monolayers and glioblastoma cells under dynamic flow conditions. We demonstrated that neutron reflectometry is a powerful tool to study the strength of cellular layer adhesion in living tissues, which is a key factor in understanding the physiology of cell interactions and conditions leading to abnormal or disease circumstances. Continuative measurements, such as investigating changes in tumor cell — surface contact of various glioblastomas, could impact advancements in tumor treatments. In principle, this can help us to identify changes that correlate with tumor invasiveness. Pursuit of these studies can have significant medical impact on the understanding of complex biological problems and their effective treatment, e.g. for the development of targeted anti-invasive therapies.

  12. Generation of living cell arrays for atomic force microscopy studies.

    PubMed

    Formosa, Cécile; Pillet, Flavien; Schiavone, Marion; Duval, Raphaël E; Ressier, Laurence; Dague, Etienne

    2015-01-01

    Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is a useful tool for studying the morphology or the nanomechanical and adhesive properties of live microorganisms under physiological conditions. However, to perform AFM imaging, living cells must be immobilized firmly enough to withstand the lateral forces exerted by the scanning tip, but without denaturing them. This protocol describes how to immobilize living cells, ranging from spores of bacteria to yeast cells, into polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) stamps, with no chemical or physical denaturation. This protocol generates arrays of living cells, allowing statistically relevant measurements to be obtained from AFM measurements, which can increase the relevance of results. The first step of the protocol is to generate a microstructured silicon master, from which many microstructured PDMS stamps can be replicated. Living cells are finally assembled into the microstructures of these PDMS stamps using a convective and capillary assembly. The complete procedure can be performed in 1 week, although the first step is done only once, and thus repeats can be completed within 1 d.

  13. Mechanical behavior in living cells consistent with the tensegrity model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, N.; Naruse, K.; Stamenovic, D.; Fredberg, J. J.; Mijailovich, S. M.; Tolic-Norrelykke, I. M.; Polte, T.; Mannix, R.; Ingber, D. E.

    2001-01-01

    Alternative models of cell mechanics depict the living cell as a simple mechanical continuum, porous filament gel, tensed cortical membrane, or tensegrity network that maintains a stabilizing prestress through incorporation of discrete structural elements that bear compression. Real-time microscopic analysis of cells containing GFP-labeled microtubules and associated mitochondria revealed that living cells behave like discrete structures composed of an interconnected network of actin microfilaments and microtubules when mechanical stresses are applied to cell surface integrin receptors. Quantitation of cell tractional forces and cellular prestress by using traction force microscopy confirmed that microtubules bear compression and are responsible for a significant portion of the cytoskeletal prestress that determines cell shape stability under conditions in which myosin light chain phosphorylation and intracellular calcium remained unchanged. Quantitative measurements of both static and dynamic mechanical behaviors in cells also were consistent with specific a priori predictions of the tensegrity model. These findings suggest that tensegrity represents a unified model of cell mechanics that may help to explain how mechanical behaviors emerge through collective interactions among different cytoskeletal filaments and extracellular adhesions in living cells.

  14. Integrated nanoscale tools for interrogating living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jorgolli, Marsela

    and fabricated a new hybrid chip that combines a front-side nanowire-based interface for neuronal recording with backside complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) circuits for on-chip multiplexing, voltage control for stimulation, signal amplification, and signal processing. Individual chips contain 1024 stimulation/recording sites enabling large-scale interfacing of neuronal networks with single cell resolution. Through electrical and electrochemical characterization of the devices, we demonstrated their enhanced functionality at a massively parallel scale. In our initial cell experiments, we achieved intracellular stimulations and recordings of changes in the membrane potential in a variety of cells including: HEK293T, cardiomyocytes, and rat cortical neurons. This demonstrated the device capability for single-cell-resolution recording/stimulation which when extended to a large number of neurons in a massively parallel fashion will enable the functional mapping of a complex neuronal network.

  15. Electromagnetic waves and living cells: A kinetic thermodynamic approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucia, Umberto

    2016-11-01

    Cells are complex thermodynamic systems. Their energy transfer, thermo-electro-chemical processes and transports phenomena can occur across the cells membranes, the border of the complex system. Moreover, cells can also actively modify their behaviours in relation to any change of their environment. All the living systems waste heat, which is no more than the result of their internal irreversibility. This heat is dissipated into their environment. But, this wasted heat represents also a sort of information, which outflows from the cell towards its environment, completely accessible to any observer. The analysis of irreversibility related to this wasted heat can represent a new useful approach to the study of the cells behaviour. This approach allows us to consider the living systems as black boxes and analyse only the inflows and outflows and their changes in relation to any environmental change. This analysis allows also the explanation of the effects of electromagnetic fields on the cell behaviour.

  16. Acoustic propulsion of nanorod motors inside living cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wei; Li, Sixing; Mair, Lamar; Ahmed, Suzanne; Huang, Tony Jun; Mallouk, Thomas E

    2014-03-17

    The ultrasonic propulsion of rod-shaped nanomotors inside living HeLa cells is demonstrated. These nanomotors (gold rods about 300 nm in diameter and about 3 mm long) attach strongly to the external surface of the cells, and are readily internalized by incubation with the cells for periods longer than 24 h. Once inside the cells, the nanorod motors can be activated by resonant ultrasound operating at 4 MHz, and show axial propulsion as well as spinning. The intracellular propulsion does not involve chemical fuels or high-power ultrasound and the HeLa cells remain viable. Ultrasonic propulsion of nanomotors may thus provide a new tool for probing the response of living cells to internal mechanical excitation, for controllably manipulating intracellular organelles, and for biomedical applications.

  17. Quantitative intracellular magnetic nanoparticle uptake measured by live cell magnetophoresis

    PubMed Central

    Jing, Ying; Mal, Niladri; Williams, P. Stephen; Mayorga, Maritza; Penn, Marc S.; Chalmers, Jeffrey J.; Zborowski, Maciej

    2008-01-01

    Superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO) particles have been used successfully as an intracellular contrast agent for nuclear MRI cell tracking in vivo. We present a method of detecting intracellular SPIO colloid uptake in live cells using cell magnetophoresis, with potential applications in measuring intracellular MRI contrast uptake. The method was evaluated by measuring shifts in mean and distribution of the cell magnetophoretic mobility, and the concomitant changes in population frequency of the magnetically positive cells when compared to the unmanipulated negative control. Seven different transfection agent (TA) -SPIO complexes based on dendrimer, lipid, and polyethylenimine compounds were used as test standards, in combination with 3 different cell types: mesenchymal stem cells, cardiac fibroblasts, and cultured KG-1a hematopoietic stem cells. Transfectol (TRA) -SPIO incubation resulted in the highest frequency of magnetically positive cells (>90%), and Fugene 6 (FUG) -SPIO incubation the lowest, below that when using SPIO alone. A highly regular process of cell magnetophoresis was amenable to intracellular iron mass calculations. The results were consistent in all the cell types studied and with other reports. The cell magnetophoresis depends on the presence of high-spin iron species and is therefore expected to be directly related to the cell MRI contrast level.—Jing, Y., Mal, N., Williams, P. S., Mayorga, M., Penn, M. S., Chalmers, J. J., Zborowski, M. Quantitative intracellular magnetic nanoparticle uptake measured by live cell magnetophoresis. PMID:18725459

  18. Continuous-Wave Stimulated Emission Depletion Microscope for Imaging Actin Cytoskeleton in Fixed and Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Neupane, Bhanu; Jin, Tao; Mellor, Liliana F.; Loboa, Elizabeth G.; Ligler, Frances S.; Wang, Gufeng

    2015-01-01

    Stimulated emission depletion (STED) microscopy provides a new opportunity to study fine sub-cellular structures and highly dynamic cellular processes, which are challenging to observe using conventional optical microscopy. Using actin as an example, we explored the feasibility of using a continuous wave (CW)-STED microscope to study the fine structure and dynamics in fixed and live cells. Actin plays an important role in cellular processes, whose functioning involves dynamic formation and reorganization of fine structures of actin filaments. Frequently used confocal fluorescence and STED microscopy dyes were employed to image fixed PC-12 cells (dyed with phalloidin- fluorescein isothiocyante) and live rat chondrosarcoma cells (RCS) transfected with actin-green fluorescent protein (GFP). Compared to conventional confocal fluorescence microscopy, CW-STED microscopy shows improved spatial resolution in both fixed and live cells. We were able to monitor cell morphology changes continuously; however, the number of repetitive analyses were limited primarily by the dyes used in these experiments and could be improved with the use of dyes less susceptible to photobleaching. In conclusion, CW-STED may disclose new information for biological systems with a proper characteristic length scale. The challenges of using CW-STED microscopy to study cell structures are discussed. PMID:26393614

  19. PALM and STORM: unlocking live-cell super-resolution.

    PubMed

    Henriques, Ricardo; Griffiths, Caron; Hesper Rego, E; Mhlanga, Musa M

    2011-05-01

    Live-cell fluorescence light microscopy has emerged as an important tool in the study of cellular biology. The development of fluorescent markers in parallel with super-resolution imaging systems has pushed light microscopy into the realm of molecular visualization at the nanometer scale. Resolutions previously only attained with electron microscopes are now within the grasp of light microscopes. However, until recently, live-cell imaging approaches have eluded super-resolution microscopy, hampering it from reaching its full potential for revealing the dynamic interactions in biology occurring at the single molecule level. Here we examine recent advances in the super-resolution imaging of living cells by reviewing recent breakthroughs in single molecule localization microscopy methods such as PALM and STORM to achieve this important goal.

  20. Animals In Synchrotrons: Overcoming Challenges For High-Resolution, Live, Small-Animal Imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Donnelley, Martin; Parsons, David; Morgan, Kaye; Siu, Karen

    2010-07-23

    Physiological studies in small animals can be complicated, but the complexity is increased dramatically when performing live-animal synchrotron X-ray imaging studies. Our group has extensive experience in high-resolution live-animal imaging at the Japanese SPring-8 synchrotron, primarily examining airways in two-dimensions. These experiments normally image an area of 1.8 mmx1.2 mm at a pixel resolution of 0.45 {mu}m and are performed with live, intact, anaesthetized mice.There are unique challenges in this experimental setting. Importantly, experiments must be performed in an isolated imaging hutch not specifically designed for small-animal imaging. This requires equipment adapted to remotely monitor animals, maintain their anesthesia, and deliver test substances while collecting images. The horizontal synchrotron X-ray beam has a fixed location and orientation that limits experimental flexibility. The extremely high resolution makes locating anatomical regions-of-interest slow and can result in a high radiation dose, and at this level of magnification small animal movements produce motion-artifacts that can render acquired images unusable. Here we describe our experimental techniques and how we have overcome several challenges involved in performing live mouse synchrotron imaging.Experiments have tested different mouse strains, with hairless strains minimizing overlying skin and hair artifacts. Different anesthetics have also be trialed due to the limited choices available at SPring-8. Tracheal-intubation methods have been refined and controlled-ventilation is now possible using a specialized small-animal ventilator. With appropriate animal restraint and respiratory-gating, motion-artifacts have been minimized. The animal orientation (supine vs. head-high) also appears to affect animal physiology, and can alter image quality. Our techniques and image quality at SPring-8 have dramatically improved and in the near future we plan to translate this experience to the

  1. Consensus, Dilemmas, and Challenges in Living Donor Liver Transplantation in Latin America.

    PubMed

    Salvalaggio, Paolo R; Seda Neto, João; Alves, Jefferson Andre; Fonseca, Eduardo A; Carneiro de Albuquerque, Luiz; Andraus, Wellington; Massarollo, Paulo B; Duro Garcia, Valter; Maurette, Rafael J; Ruf, Andrés E; Pacheco-Moreira, Lucio F; Caicedo Rusca, Luis A; Osorio, Veronica Botero; Matamoros, Maria Amalia; Varela-Fascinetto, Gustavo; Jarufe, Nicolas P

    2016-06-01

    We reviewed the history, volume, outcomes, uniqueness, and challenges of living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) in Latin America. We used the data from the Latin American and Caribbean Transplant Society, local transplant societies, and opinions from local transplant experts. There are more than 160 active liver transplant teams in Latin America, but only 30 centers have used LDLT in the past 2 years. In 2014, 226 LDLTs were done in the region (8.5% of liver transplant activities). Living donor liver transplantation is mainly restricted to pediatric patients. Adult-to-adult LDLT activities decreased after the implementation of the model for end-stage liver disease score and a concomitant increase on the rate of deceased donors per million population. Posttransplant outcome analysis is not mandatory, transparent or regulated in most countries. More experienced teams have outcomes comparable to international expert centers, but donor and recipient morbidity might be underreported. Latin America lags behind in terms of the number of adult LDLT and the rate of living donor utilization in comparison with other continents with similar donation rates. Local alliances and collaborations with major transplant centers in the developed world will contribute to the development of LDLT in Latin America.

  2. Radioimmunoimaging with longer-lived positron-emitting radionuclides: potentials and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Nayak, Tapan K.; Brechbiel, Martin W.

    2012-01-01

    Radioimmunoimaging and therapy has been an area of interest for several decades. Steady progress has been made towards clinical translation of radiolabeled monoclonal antibodies for diagnosis and treatment of diseases. Tremendous advances have been made in imaging technologies such as positron emission tomography (PET). However, these advances have so far eluded routine translation into clinical radioimmunoimaging applications due to the mismatch between the short half-lives of routinely used positron-emitting radionuclides such as 18F versus the pharmacokinetics of most intact monoclonal antibodies of interest. The lack of suitable positron-emitting radionuclides that match the pharmacokinetics of intact antibodies has generated interest in exploring the use of longer-lived positron emitters that are more suitable for radioimmunoimaging and dosimetry applications with intact monoclonal antibodies. In this review, we examine the opportunities and challenges of radioimmunoimaging with select longer-lived positron-emitting radionuclides such as 124I, 89Zr and 86Y with respect to radionuclide production, ease of radiolabeling intact antibodies, imaging characteristics, radiation dosimetry and clinical translation potential. PMID:19125647

  3. Three-Dimensional Printing of Tissue/Organ Analogues Containing Living Cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Jeong Hun; Jang, Jinah; Lee, Jung-Seob; Cho, Dong-Woo

    2017-01-01

    The technical advances of three-dimensional (3D) printing in the field of tissue engineering have enabled the creation of 3D living tissue/organ analogues. Diverse 3D tissue/organ printing techniques with computer-aided systems have been developed and used to dispose living cells together with biomaterials and supporting biochemicals as pre-designed 3D tissue/organ models. Furthermore, recent advances in bio-inks, which are printable hydrogels with living cell encapsulation, have greatly enhanced the versatility of 3D tissue/organ printing. Here, we introduce 3D tissue/organ printing techniques and biomaterials that have been developed and widely used thus far. We also review a variety of applications in an attempt to repair or replace the damaged or defective tissue/organ, and develop the in vitro tissue/organ models. The potential challenges are finally discussed from the technical perspective of 3D tissue/organ printing.

  4. Allosteric activation of membrane-bound glutamate receptors using coordination chemistry within living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiyonaka, Shigeki; Kubota, Ryou; Michibata, Yukiko; Sakakura, Masayoshi; Takahashi, Hideo; Numata, Tomohiro; Inoue, Ryuji; Yuzaki, Michisuke; Hamachi, Itaru

    2016-10-01

    The controlled activation of proteins in living cells is an important goal in protein-design research, but to introduce an artificial activation switch into membrane proteins through rational design is a significant challenge because of the structural and functional complexity of such proteins. Here we report the allosteric activation of two types of membrane-bound neurotransmitter receptors, the ion-channel type and the G-protein-coupled glutamate receptors, using coordination chemistry in living cells. The high programmability of coordination chemistry enabled two His mutations, which act as an artificial allosteric site, to be semirationally incorporated in the vicinity of the ligand-binding pockets. Binding of Pd(2,2‧-bipyridine) at the allosteric site enabled the active conformations of the glutamate receptors to be stabilized. Using this approach, we were able to activate selectively a mutant glutamate receptor in live neurons, which initiated a subsequent signal-transduction pathway.

  5. A microRNA-initiated DNAzyme motor operating in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Hanyong; Li, Xing-Fang; Zhang, Hongquan; Le, X. Chris

    2017-03-01

    Synthetic DNA motors have great potential to mimic natural protein motors in cells but the operation of synthetic DNA motors in living cells remains challenging and has not been demonstrated. Here we report a DNAzyme motor that operates in living cells in response to a specific intracellular target. The whole motor system is constructed on a 20 nm gold nanoparticle (AuNP) decorated with hundreds of substrate strands serving as DNA tracks and dozens of DNAzyme molecules each silenced by a locking strand. Intracellular interaction of a target molecule with the motor system initiates the autonomous walking of the motor on the AuNP. An example DNAzyme motor responsive to a specific microRNA enables amplified detection of the specific microRNA in individual cancer cells. Activated by specific intracellular targets, these self-powered DNAzyme motors will have diverse applications in the control and modulation of biological functions.

  6. A microRNA-initiated DNAzyme motor operating in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Peng, Hanyong; Li, Xing-Fang; Zhang, Hongquan; Le, X. Chris

    2017-01-01

    Synthetic DNA motors have great potential to mimic natural protein motors in cells but the operation of synthetic DNA motors in living cells remains challenging and has not been demonstrated. Here we report a DNAzyme motor that operates in living cells in response to a specific intracellular target. The whole motor system is constructed on a 20 nm gold nanoparticle (AuNP) decorated with hundreds of substrate strands serving as DNA tracks and dozens of DNAzyme molecules each silenced by a locking strand. Intracellular interaction of a target molecule with the motor system initiates the autonomous walking of the motor on the AuNP. An example DNAzyme motor responsive to a specific microRNA enables amplified detection of the specific microRNA in individual cancer cells. Activated by specific intracellular targets, these self-powered DNAzyme motors will have diverse applications in the control and modulation of biological functions. PMID:28262725

  7. Vinblastine suppresses dynamics of individual microtubules in living interphase cells.

    PubMed Central

    Dhamodharan, R; Jordan, M A; Thrower, D; Wilson, L; Wadsworth, P

    1995-01-01

    We have characterized the effects of vinblastine on the dynamic instability behavior of individual microtubules in living BS-C-1 cells microinjected with rhodamine-labeled tubulin and have found that at low concentrations (3-64 nM), vinblastine potently suppresses dynamic instability without causing net microtubule depolymerization. Vinblastine suppressed the rates of microtubule growth and shortening, and decreased the frequency of transitions from growth or pause to shortening, also called catastrophe. In vinblastine-treated cells, both the average duration of a pause (a state of attenuated dynamics where neither growth nor shortening could be detected) and the percentage of total time spent in pause were significantly increased. Vinblastine potently decreased dynamicity, a measure of the overall dynamic activity of microtubules, reducing this parameter by 75% at 32 nM. The present work, consistent with earlier in vitro studies, demonstrates that vinblastine kinetically caps the ends of microtubules in living cells and supports the hypothesis that the potent chemotherapeutic action of vinblastine as an antitumor drug is suppression of mitotic spindle microtubule dynamics. Further, the results indicate that molecules that bind to microtubule ends can regulate microtubule dynamic behavior in living cells and suggest that endogenous regulators of microtubule dynamics that work by similar mechanisms may exist in living cells. Images PMID:8534917

  8. Living with cardiac resynchronization therapy: Challenges for people with heart failure.

    PubMed

    Dehghanzadeh, Shadi; Dehghan Nayeri, Nahid; Varaei, Shokoh; Kheirkhah, Jalal

    2017-03-01

    The number of people with heart failure requiring implantation of a cardiac resynchronization device is increasing in Iran. Although this intervention is an effective life-saving treatment, several challenges are associated with patients' lifestyle after insertion. This study identified the challenges and coping mechanisms of Iranians with heart failure living with cardiac resynchronization therapy. A qualitative approach using conventional content analysis was adopted. Seventeen people with heart failure and three nurses were recruited between December 2014 and November 2015 from a teaching hospital and a private clinic in Rasht, Iran. Participants were interviewed using semi-structured interviews lasting 30-60 min. Five themes emerged: (i) fear of implantation, (ii) the panic of receiving a shock from the device, (iii) lack of control over life, (iv) inadequacies of the healthcare system, and (v) psychosocial coping. A heightened understanding of these challenges and coping strategies could prepare healthcare professionals to provide better routine care, education, and support to the recipients of cardiac resynchronization therapy prior to implantation, during the recovery period, and for long-term management.

  9. The antimalarial artemisinin synergizes with antibiotics to protect against lethal live Escherichia coli challenge by decreasing proinflammatory cytokine release.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; Zhou, Hong; Zheng, Jiang; Cheng, Juan; Liu, Wei; Ding, Guofu; Wang, Liangxi; Luo, Ping; Lu, Yongling; Cao, Hongwei; Yu, Shuangjiang; Li, Bin; Zhang, Lezhi

    2006-07-01

    In the present study artemisinin (ART) was found to have potent anti-inflammatory effects in animal models of sepsis induced by CpG-containing oligodeoxy-nucleotides (CpG ODN), lipopolysaccharide (LPS), heat-killed Escherichia coli 35218 or live E. coli. Furthermore, we found that ART protected mice from a lethal challenge by CpG ODN, LPS, or heat-killed E. coli in a dose-dependent manner and that the protection was related to a reduction in serum tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha). More significantly, the administration of ART together with ampicillin or unasyn (a complex of ampicillin and sulbactam) decreased mortality from 100 to 66.7% or 33.3%, respectively, in mice subjected to a lethal live E. coli challenge. Together with the observation that ART alone does not inhibit bacterial growth, this result suggests that ART protection is achieved as a result of its anti-inflammatory activity rather than an antimicrobial effect. In RAW264.7 cells, pretreatment with ART potently inhibited TNF-alpha and interleukin-6 release induced by CpG ODN, LPS, or heat-killed E. coli in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Experiments utilizing affinity sensor technology revealed no direct binding of ART with CpG ODN or LPS. Flow cytometry further showed that ART did not alter binding of CpG ODN to cell surfaces or the internalization of CpG ODN. In addition, upregulated levels of TLR9 and TLR4 mRNA were not attenuated by ART treatment. ART treatment did, however, block the NF-kappaB activation induced by CpG ODN, LPS, or heat-killed E. coli. These findings provide compelling evidence that ART may be an important potential drug for sepsis treatment.

  10. Imaging the action of antimicrobial peptides on living bacterial cells

    PubMed Central

    Gee, Michelle L.; Burton, Matthew; Grevis-James, Alistair; Hossain, Mohammed Akhter; McArthur, Sally; Palombo, Enzo A.; Wade, John D.; Clayton, Andrew H. A.

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides hold promise as broad-spectrum alternatives to conventional antibiotics. The mechanism of action of this class of peptide is a topical area of research focused predominantly on their interaction with artificial membranes. Here we compare the interaction mechanism of a model antimicrobial peptide with single artificial membranes and live bacterial cells. The interaction kinetics was imaged using time-lapse fluorescence lifetime imaging of a fluorescently-tagged melittin derivative. Interaction with the synthetic membranes resulted in membrane pore formation. In contrast, the interaction with bacteria led to transient membrane disruption and corresponding leakage of the cytoplasm, but surprisingly with a much reduced level of pore formation. The discovery that pore formation is a less significant part of lipid-peptide interaction in live bacteria highlights the mechanistic complexity of these interactions in living cells compared to simple artificial systems. PMID:23532056

  11. Live-cell analysis of plant reproduction: live-cell imaging, optical manipulation, and advanced microscopy technologies.

    PubMed

    Kurihara, Daisuke; Hamamura, Yuki; Higashiyama, Tetsuya

    2013-05-01

    Sexual reproduction ensures propagation of species and enhances genetic diversity within populations. In flowering plants, sexual reproduction requires complicated and multi-step cell-to-cell communications among male and female cells. However, the confined nature of plant reproduction processes, which occur in the female reproductive organs and several cell layers of the pistil, limits our ability to observe these events in vivo. In this review, we discuss recent live-cell imaging in in vitro systems and the optical manipulation techniques that are used to capture the dynamic mechanisms representing molecular and cellular communications in sexual plant reproduction.

  12. Spray-Dried Multiscale Nano-biocomposites Containing Living Cells.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Patrick E; Muttil, Pavan; MacKenzie, Debra; Carnes, Eric C; Pelowitz, Jennifer; Mara, Nathan A; Mook, William M; Jett, Stephen D; Dunphy, Darren R; Timmins, Graham S; Brinker, C Jeffrey

    2015-07-28

    Three-dimensional encapsulation of cells within nanostructured silica gels or matrices enables applications as diverse as biosensors, microbial fuel cells, artificial organs, and vaccines; it also allows the study of individual cell behaviors. Recent progress has improved the performance and flexibility of cellular encapsulation, yet there remains a need for robust scalable processes. Here, we report a spray-drying process enabling the large-scale production of functional nano-biocomposites (NBCs) containing living cells within ordered 3D lipid-silica nanostructures. The spray-drying process is demonstrated to work with multiple cell types and results in dry powders exhibiting a unique combination of properties including highly ordered 3D nanostructure, extended lipid fluidity, tunable macromorphologies and aerodynamic diameters, and unexpectedly high physical strength. Nanoindentation of the encasing nanostructure revealed a Young's modulus and hardness of 13 and 1.4 GPa, respectively. We hypothesized this high strength would prevent cell growth and force bacteria into viable but not culturable (VBNC) states. In concordance with the VBNC state, cellular ATP levels remained elevated even over eight months. However, their ability to undergo resuscitation and enter growth phase greatly decreased with time in the VBNC state. A quantitative method of determining resuscitation frequencies was developed and showed that, after 36 weeks in a NBC-induced VBNC, less than 1 in 10,000 cells underwent resuscitation. The NBC platform production of large quantities of VBNC cells is of interest for research in bacterial persistence and screening of drugs targeting such cells. NBCs may also enable long-term preservation of living cells for applications in cell-based sensing and the packaging and delivery of live-cell vaccines.

  13. AFM review study on pox viruses and living cells.

    PubMed

    Ohnesorge, F M; Hörber, J K; Häberle, W; Czerny, C P; Smith, D P; Binnig, G

    1997-10-01

    Single living cells were studied in growth medium by atomic force microscopy at a high--down to one image frame per second--imaging rate over time periods of many hours, stably producing hundreds of consecutive scans with a lateral resolution of approximately 30-40 nm. The cell was held by a micropipette mounted onto the scanner-piezo as shown in Häberle, W., J. K. H. Hörber, and G. Binnig. 1991. Force microscopy on living cells. J. Vac. Sci. Technol. B9:1210-0000. To initiate specific processes on the cell surface the cells had been infected with pox viruses as reported earlier and, most likely, the liberation of a progeny virion by the still-living cell was observed, hence confirming and supporting earlier results (Häberle, W., J. K. H. Hörber, F. Ohnesorge, D. P. E. Smith, and G. Binnig. 1992. In situ investigations of single living cells infected by viruses. Ultramicroscopy. 42-44:1161-0000; Hörber, J. K. H., W. Häberle, F. Ohnesorge, G. Binnig, H. G. Liebich, C. P. Czerny, H. Mahnel, and A. Mayr. 1992. Investigation of living cells in the nanometer regime with the atomic force microscope. Scanning Microscopy. 6:919-930). Furthermore, the pox viruses used were characterized separately by AFM in an aqueous environment down to the molecular level. Quasi-ordered structural details were resolved on a scale of a few nm where, however, image distortions and artifacts due to multiple tip effects are probably involved--just as in very high resolution (<15-20 nm) images on the cells. Although in a very preliminary manner, initial studies on the mechanical resonance properties of a single living (noninfected) cell, held by the micropipette, have been performed. In particular, frequency response spectra were recorded that indicate elastic properties and enough stiffness of these cells to make the demonstrated rapid scanning of the imaging tip plausible. Measurements of this kind, especially if they can be proven to be cell-type specific, may perhaps have a large

  14. Live-cell thermometry with nitrogen vacancy centers in nanodiamonds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jayakumar, Harishankar; Fedder, Helmut; Chen, Andrew; Yang, Liudi; Li, Chenghai; Wrachtrup, Joerg; Wang, Sihong; Meriles, Carlos

    The ability to measure temperature is typically affected by a tradeoff between sensitivity and spatial resolution. Good thermometers tend to be bulky systems and hence are ill-suited for thermal sensing with high spatial localization. Conversely, the signal resulting from nanoscale temperature probes is often impacted by noise to a level where the measurement precision becomes poor. Adding to the microscopist toolbox, the nitrogen vacancy (NV) center in diamond has recently emerged as a promising platform for high-sensitivity nanoscale thermometry. Of particular interest are applications in living cells because diamond nanocrystals are biocompatible and can be chemically functionalized to target specific organelles. Here we report progress on the ability to probe and compare temperature within and between living cells using nanodiamond-hosted NV thermometry. We focus our study on cancerous cells, where atypical metabolic pathways arguably lead to changes in the way a cell generates heat, and thus on its temperature profile.

  15. Biosynthesis of a Fully Functional Cyclotide inside Living Bacterial Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Camarero, J A; Kimura, R H; Woo, Y; Cantor, J; Shekhtman, A

    2007-04-05

    The cyclotide MCoTI-II is a powerful trypsin inhibitor recently isolated from the seeds of Momordica cochinchinensis, a plant member of cucurbitaceae family. We report for the first time the in vivo biosynthesis of natively-folded MCoTI-II inside live E. coli cells. Our biomimetic approach involves the intracellular backbone cyclization of a linear cyclotide-intein fusion precursor mediated by a modified protein splicing domain. The cyclized peptide then spontaneously folds into its native conformation. The use of genetically engineered E. coli cells containing mutations in the glutathione and thioredoxin reductase genes considerably improves the production of folded MCoTI-II in vivo. Biochemical and structural characterization of the recombinant MCoTI-II confirmed its identity. Biosynthetic access to correctly-folded cyclotides allows the possibility of generating cell-based combinatorial libraries that can be screened inside living cells for their ability to modulate or inhibit cellular processes.

  16. Comparison of Two Commercial Type 1 Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV) Modified Live Vaccines against Heterologous Type 1 and Type 2 PRRSV Challenge in Growing Pigs

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Taeyeon; Park, Changhoon; Choi, Kyuhyung; Jeong, Jiwoon; Kang, Ikjae; Park, Su-Jin

    2015-01-01

    The objective of the present study was to compare the efficacy of two commercial type 1 porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) modified live vaccines against heterologous type 1 and type 2 PRRSV challenge in growing pigs. Vaccination with a type 1 PRRSV vaccine reduced the level of viremia after type 1 PRRSV challenge but did not reduce the level of viremia after the type 2 PRRSV challenge in pigs. Increased levels of interleukin-10 (IL-10) stimulated by type 2 PRRSV coincided with the low numbers of type 2 PRRSV-specific interferon gamma-secreting cells (IFN-γ-SC) in vaccinated pigs after type 2 PRRSV challenge, whereas low levels of IL-10 stimulated by type 1 PRRSV coincided with high numbers of type 1 PRRSV-specific IFN-γ-SC in vaccinated pigs after type 1 PRRSV challenge. Additionally, vaccination with the type 1 PRRSV vaccine effectively reduced the lung lesions and type 1 PRRSV nucleic acids in type 1 PRRSV-challenged pigs but did not reduce lung lesions and type 2 PRRSV nucleic acids in type 2 PRRSV-challenged pigs. There were no significant differences between two commercial type 1 PRRSV vaccines against type 1 and type 2 PRRSV challenge based on virological results, immunological responses, and pathological outcomes. This study demonstrates that vaccinating pigs with the type 1 PRRSV vaccine provides partial protection against respiratory disease with heterologous type 1 PRRSV challenge but no protection with heterologous type 2 PRRSV challenge. PMID:25855554

  17. Active Cellular Mechanics and Information Processing in the Living Cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rao, M.

    2014-07-01

    I will present our recent work on the organization of signaling molecules on the surface of living cells. Using novel experimental and theoretical approaches we have found that many cell surface receptors are organized as dynamic clusters driven by active currents and stresses generated by the cortical cytoskeleton adjoining the cell surface. We have shown that this organization is optimal for both information processing and computation. In connecting active mechanics in the cell with information processing and computation, we bring together two of the seminal works of Alan Turing.

  18. Transverse mechanical properties of cell walls of single living plant cells probed by laser-generated acoustic waves.

    PubMed

    Gadalla, Atef; Dehoux, Thomas; Audoin, Bertrand

    2014-05-01

    Probing the mechanical properties of plant cell wall is crucial to understand tissue dynamics. However, the exact symmetry of the mechanical properties of this anisotropic fiber-reinforced composite remains uncertain. For this reason, biologically relevant measurements of the stiffness coefficients on individual living cells are a challenge. For this purpose, we have developed the single-cell optoacoustic nanoprobe (SCOPE) technique, which uses laser-generated acoustic waves to probe the stiffness, thickness and viscosity of live single-cell subcompartments. This all-optical technique offers a sub-micrometer lateral resolution, nanometer in-depth resolution, and allows the non-contact measurement of the mechanical properties of live turgid tissues without any assumption of mechanical symmetry. SCOPE experiments reveal that single-cell wall transverse stiffness in the direction perpendicular to the epidermis layer of onion cells is close to that of cellulose. This observation demonstrates that cellulose microfibrils are the main load-bearing structure in this direction, and suggests strong bonding of microfibrils by hemicelluloses. Altogether our measurement of the viscosity at high frequencies suggests that the rheology of the wall is dominated by glass-like dynamics. From a comparison with literature, we attribute this behavior to the influence of the pectin matrix. SCOPE's ability to unravel cell rheology and cell anisotropy defines a new class of experiments to enlighten cell nano-mechanics.

  19. The preservation of living cells with biocompatible microparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Jing; Zhu, Yingnan; Xu, Tong; Pan, Chao; Cai, Nana; Huang, He; Zhang, Lei

    2016-07-01

    Biomedical applications of living cells have rapidly expanded in many fields such as toxic detection, drug screening, and regenerative medicine, etc. Efficient methods to support cell survival and maintain activity in vitro have become increasingly important. However, traditional cryopreservation for living cell-based applications is limited by several problems. Here, we report that magnetic hydrogel microparticles can physically assemble into a 3D environment for efficient cell preservation in physiological conditions, avoiding any chemical reactions that would damage the cells. Two representative cell lines (loosely and firmly adherent) were tested to evaluate the versatility of this method. The results showed that cell longevity was significantly extended to at least 15 days, while the control cell samples without microparticles quickly died within 3 days. Moreover, after preservation, cells can be easily retrieved by applying a magnet to separate the magnetic particles. This strategy can also inhibit cell over-proliferation while avoiding the use of temperature extremes or toxic cryoprotectants that are essential in cryopreservation.

  20. Out-of-equilibrium microrheology inside living cells.

    PubMed

    Wilhelm, Claire

    2008-07-11

    Both forced and spontaneous motions of magnetic microbeads engulfed by Dictyostelium cells have served as experimental probes of intracellular dynamics. The complex shear modulus G*(omega), determined from active oscillatory measurements, has a power-law dynamics and increases with the probe size, reflecting intracellular structural complexity. The combined use of passive microrheology allows one to derive the power spectrum of active forces acting on intracellular phagosomes and to test the validity of the fluctuation-dissipation theorem inside living cells.

  1. From surface to intracellular non-invasive nanoscale study of living cells impairments

    SciTech Connect

    Ewald, Dr. Maxime; Tetard, Laurene; Elie-Caille, Dr. Cecile; Nicod, Laurence; Passian, Ali; Bourillot, Dr. Eric; Lesniewska, Prof. Eric

    2014-01-01

    Among the enduring challenges in nanoscience, subsurface characterization of live cells holds major stakes. Developments in nanometrology for soft matter thriving on the sensitivity and high resolution benefits of atomic force microscopy have enabled detection of subsurface structures at the nanoscale (1,2,3). However, measurements in liquid environments remain complex (4,5,6,7), in particular in the subsurface domain. Here we introduce liquid-Mode Synthesizing Atomic Force Microscopy (l-MSAFM) to study both the inner structures and the chemically induced intracellular impairments of living cells. Specifically, we visualize the intracellular stress effects of glyphosate on living keratinocytes skin cells. This new approach for living cell nanoscale imaging, l-MSAFM, in their physiological environment or in presence of a chemical stress agent confirmed the loss of inner structures induced by glyphosate. The ability to monitor the cell's inner response to external stimuli, non-destructively and in real time, has the potential to unveil critical nanoscale mechanisms of life science.

  2. In-vitro analysis of APA microcapsules for oral delivery of live bacterial cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, H; Ouyang, W; Jones, M; Haque, T; Lawuyi, B; Prakash, S

    2005-08-01

    Oral administration of microcapsules containing live bacterial cells has potential as an alternative therapy for several diseases. This article evaluates the suitability of the alginate-poly-L-lysine-alginate (APA) microcapsules for oral delivery of live bacterial cells, in-vitro, using a dynamic simulated human gastro-intestinal (GI) model. Results showed that the APA microcapsules were morphologically stable in the simulated stomach conditions, but did not retain their structural integrity after a 3-day exposure in simulated human GI media. The microbial populations of the tested bacterial cells and the activities of the tested enzymes in the simulated human GI suspension were not substantially altered by the presence of the APA microcapsules, suggesting that there were no significant adverse effects of oral administration of the APA microcapsules on the flora of the human gastrointestinal tract. When the APA microcapsules containing Lactobacillus plantarum 80 (LP80) were challenged in the simulated gastric medium (pH = 2.0), 80.0% of the encapsulated cells remained viable after a 5-min incubation; however, the viability decreased considerably (8.3%) after 15 min and dropped to 2.6% after 30 min and lower than 0.2% after 60 min, indicating the limitations of the currently obtainable APA membrane for oral delivery of live bacteria. Further in-vivo studies are required before conclusions can be made concerning the inadequacy of APA microcapsules for oral delivery of live bacterial cells.

  3. Exploring dynamics in living cells by tracking single particles.

    PubMed

    Levi, Valeria; Gratton, Enrico

    2007-01-01

    In the last years, significant advances in microscopy techniques and the introduction of a novel technology to label living cells with genetically encoded fluorescent proteins revolutionized the field of Cell Biology. Our understanding on cell dynamics built from snapshots on fixed specimens has evolved thanks to our actual capability to monitor in real time the evolution of processes in living cells. Among these new tools, single particle tracking techniques were developed to observe and follow individual particles. Hence, we are starting to unravel the mechanisms driving the motion of a wide variety of cellular components ranging from organelles to protein molecules by following their way through the cell. In this review, we introduce the single particle tracking technology to new users. We briefly describe the instrumentation and explain some of the algorithms commonly used to locate and track particles. Also, we present some common tools used to analyze trajectories and illustrate with some examples the applications of single particle tracking to study dynamics in living cells.

  4. Live cell opto-injection by femtosecond laser pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumgart, J.; Bintig, W.; Ngezahayo, A.; Ertmer, W.; Lubatschowski, H.; Heisterkamp, A.

    2007-02-01

    Fluorescence imaging of cells and cell organelles requires labeling by fluorophores. The labeling of living cells is often done by transfection of fluorescent proteins. Viral vectors are transferring the DNA into the cell. To avoid the use of viruses, it is possible to perforate the cell membrane for example by electro-shocks, the so called electroporation, so that the fluorescent proteins can diffuse into the cell. This method causes cell death in up to 50% of the treated cells because the damage of the outer membrane is too large. A less lethal perforation of the cell membrane with high efficiency can be realized by femtosecond (fs) laser pulses. Transient pores are created by focusing the laser beam for some milliseconds on the membrane. Through this pore, the proteins can enter into the cell. This was demonstrated in a proof of principle experiment for a few cells, but it is essential to develop an opto-perforation system for large numbers of cells in order to obtain statistically significant samples for biological experiments. The relationship between pulse energy, irradiation time, repetition rate and efficacy of the transfer of a chromophor into the cells as well as the viability of the cells was analysed. The cell viability was observed up to 90 minutes after manipulation.

  5. Imaging of mobile long-lived nanoplatforms in the live cell plasma membrane.

    PubMed

    Brameshuber, Mario; Weghuber, Julian; Ruprecht, Verena; Gombos, Imre; Horváth, Ibolya; Vigh, László; Eckerstorfer, Paul; Kiss, Endre; Stockinger, Hannes; Schütz, Gerhard J

    2010-12-31

    The plasma membrane has been hypothesized to contain nanoscopic lipid platforms, which are discussed in the context of "lipid rafts" or "membrane rafts." Based on biochemical and cell biological studies, rafts are believed to play a crucial role in many signaling processes. However, there is currently not much information on their size, shape, stability, surface density, composition, and heterogeneity. We present here a method that allows for the first time the direct imaging of nanoscopic long-lived platforms with raft-like properties diffusing in the live cell plasma membrane. Our method senses these platforms by their property to assemble a characteristic set of fluorescent marker proteins or lipids on a time scale of seconds. A special photobleaching protocol was used to reduce the surface density of labeled mobile platforms down to the level of well isolated diffraction-limited spots without altering the single spot brightness. The statistical distribution of probe molecules per platform was determined by single molecule brightness analysis. For demonstration, we used the consensus raft marker glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored monomeric GFP and the fluorescent lipid analog BODIPY-G(M1), which preferentially partitions into liquid-ordered phases. For both markers, we found cholesterol-dependent homo-association in the plasma membrane of living CHO and Jurkat T cells in the resting state, thereby demonstrating the existence of small, mobile, long-lived platforms containing these probes. We further applied the technology to address structural changes in the plasma membrane during fever-type heat shock: at elevated temperatures, the glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored monomeric GFP homo-association disappeared, accompanied by an increase in the expression of the small heat shock protein Hsp27.

  6. Internalization of ferromagnetic nanowires by different living cells

    PubMed Central

    Prina-Mello, Adriele; Diao, Zhu; Coey, John Michael David

    2006-01-01

    The ability of living cells, either adherent or suspended, to internalize nickel nanowires is demonstrated for MC3T3-E1, UMR106-tumour and Marrow-Stromal cells. Nanowires were produced by electrodeposition, 20 μm long and 200 nm in diameter. Cell separation and manipulation was achieved for the three cell types. Applied magnetic field successfully oriented the internalized nanowires but no clear anisotropy is induced on the adherent cells. Nanowires tend to bind to cytoplasm metalloproteins and trigger lysosome reorganization around the nucleus. This work demonstrates the applications of nanowires in adherent and suspended cells for cell separation and manipulation, and further explore into their role in nanobiotechnology. PMID:16953891

  7. Using a nano-flare probe to detect RNA in live donor cells prior to somatic cell nuclear transfer.

    PubMed

    Fu, Bo; Ren, Liang; Liu, Di; Ma, Jian-Zhang; An, Tie-Zhu; Yang, Xiu-Qin; Ma, Hong; Guo, Zhen-Hua; Zhu, Meng; Bai, Jing

    2016-01-01

    Many transgenes are silenced in mammalian cells (donor cells used for somatic cell nuclear transfer [SCNT]). Silencing correlated with a repressed chromatin structure or suppressed promoter, and it impeded the production of transgenic animals. Gene transcription studies in live cells are challenging because of the drawbacks of reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and fluorescence in situ hybridization. Nano-flare probes provide an effective approach to detect RNA in living cells. We used 18S RNA, a housekeeping gene, as a reference gene. This study aimed to establish a platform to detect RNA in single living donor cells using a Nano-flare probe prior to SCNT and to verify the safety and validity of the Nano-flare probe in order to provide a technical foundation for rescuing silenced transgenes in transgenic cloned embryos. We investigated cytotoxic effect of the 18S RNA-Nano-flare probe on porcine fetal fibroblasts, characterized the distribution of the 18S RNA-Nano-flare probe in living cells and investigated the effect of the 18S RNA-Nano-flare probe on the development of cloned embryos after SCNT. The cytotoxic effect of the 18S RNA-Nano-flare probe on porcine fetal fibroblasts was dose-dependent, and 18S RNA was detected using the 18S RNA-Nano-flare probe. In addition, treating donor cells with 500 pM 18S RNA-Nano-flare probe did not have adverse effects on the development of SCNT embryos at the pre-implantation stage. In conclusion, we established a preliminary platform to detect RNA in live donor cells using a Nano-flare probe prior to SCNT.

  8. High resolution 3D imaging of living cells with sub-optical wavelength phonons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pérez-Cota, Fernando; Smith, Richard J.; Moradi, Emilia; Marques, Leonel; Webb, Kevin F.; Clark, Matt

    2016-12-01

    Label-free imaging of living cells below the optical diffraction limit poses great challenges for optical microscopy. Biologically relevant structural information remains below the Rayleigh limit and beyond the reach of conventional microscopes. Super-resolution techniques are typically based on the non-linear and stochastic response of fluorescent labels which can be toxic and interfere with cell function. In this paper we present, for the first time, imaging of live cells using sub-optical wavelength phonons. The axial imaging resolution of our system is determined by the acoustic wavelength (λa = λprobe/2n) and not on the NA of the optics allowing sub-optical wavelength acoustic sectioning of samples using the time of flight. The transverse resolution is currently limited to the optical spot size. The contrast mechanism is significantly determined by the mechanical properties of the cells and requires no additional contrast agent, stain or label to image the cell structure. The ability to breach the optical diffraction limit to image living cells acoustically promises to bring a new suite of imaging technologies to bear in answering exigent questions in cell biology and biomedicine.

  9. High resolution 3D imaging of living cells with sub-optical wavelength phonons

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Cota, Fernando; Smith, Richard J.; Moradi, Emilia; Marques, Leonel; Webb, Kevin F.; Clark, Matt

    2016-01-01

    Label-free imaging of living cells below the optical diffraction limit poses great challenges for optical microscopy. Biologically relevant structural information remains below the Rayleigh limit and beyond the reach of conventional microscopes. Super-resolution techniques are typically based on the non-linear and stochastic response of fluorescent labels which can be toxic and interfere with cell function. In this paper we present, for the first time, imaging of live cells using sub-optical wavelength phonons. The axial imaging resolution of our system is determined by the acoustic wavelength (λa = λprobe/2n) and not on the NA of the optics allowing sub-optical wavelength acoustic sectioning of samples using the time of flight. The transverse resolution is currently limited to the optical spot size. The contrast mechanism is significantly determined by the mechanical properties of the cells and requires no additional contrast agent, stain or label to image the cell structure. The ability to breach the optical diffraction limit to image living cells acoustically promises to bring a new suite of imaging technologies to bear in answering exigent questions in cell biology and biomedicine. PMID:27996028

  10. A biocompatible condensation reaction for controlled assembly of nanostructures in live cells

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Gaolin; Ren, Hongjun; Rao, Jianghong

    2011-01-01

    Through controlled synthesis and molecular assembly, biological systems are able to organize molecules into supramolecular structures that carry out sophisticated processes. Although chemists have reported a few examples of supramolecular assembly in water, the controlled covalent synthesis of large molecules and structures in vivo has remained challenging. Here we report a condensation reaction between 1,2-aminothiol and 2-cyanobenzothiazole that occurs in vitro and in living cells under the control of pH, disulfide reduction and enzymatic cleavage. In vitro, the size and shape of the condensation products, and nanostructures subsequently assembled, were different in each case and could thus be controlled by tuning the structure of the monomers. Direct imaging of the products obtained in the cells revealed their locations – near the Golgi bodies under enzymatic cleavage control – demonstrating the feasibility of a controlled and localized reaction in living cells. This intracellular condensation process enabled the imaging of the proteolytic activity of furin. PMID:21124381

  11. A biocompatible condensation reaction for controlled assembly of nanostructures in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Gaolin; Ren, Hongjun; Rao, Jianghong

    2010-01-01

    Through controlled synthesis and molecular assembly, biological systems are able to organize molecules into supramolecular structures that carry out sophisticated processes. Although chemists have reported a few examples of supramolecular assembly in water, the controlled covalent synthesis of large molecules and structures in vivo has remained challenging. Here we report a condensation reaction between 1,2-aminothiol and 2-cyanobenzothiazole that occurs in vitro and in living cells under the control of either pH, disulfide reduction or enzymatic cleavage. In vitro, the size and shape of the condensation products, and the nanostructures subsequently assembled, were different in each case and could thus be controlled by tuning the structure of the monomers. Direct imaging of the products obtained in the cells revealed their locations-near the Golgi bodies under enzymatic cleavage control-demonstrating the feasibility of a controlled and localized reaction in living cells. This intracellular condensation process enabled the imaging of the proteolytic activity of furin.

  12. Complementarity of PALM and SOFI for super-resolution live-cell imaging of focal adhesions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deschout, Hendrik; Lukes, Tomas; Sharipov, Azat; Szlag, Daniel; Feletti, Lely; Vandenberg, Wim; Dedecker, Peter; Hofkens, Johan; Leutenegger, Marcel; Lasser, Theo; Radenovic, Aleksandra

    2016-12-01

    Live-cell imaging of focal adhesions requires a sufficiently high temporal resolution, which remains a challenge for super-resolution microscopy. Here we address this important issue by combining photoactivated localization microscopy (PALM) with super-resolution optical fluctuation imaging (SOFI). Using simulations and fixed-cell focal adhesion images, we investigate the complementarity between PALM and SOFI in terms of spatial and temporal resolution. This PALM-SOFI framework is used to image focal adhesions in living cells, while obtaining a temporal resolution below 10 s. We visualize the dynamics of focal adhesions, and reveal local mean velocities around 190 nm min-1. The complementarity of PALM and SOFI is assessed in detail with a methodology that integrates a resolution and signal-to-noise metric. This PALM and SOFI concept provides an enlarged quantitative imaging framework, allowing unprecedented functional exploration of focal adhesions through the estimation of molecular parameters such as fluorophore densities and photoactivation or photoswitching kinetics.

  13. Generation of an intrabody-based reagent suitable for imaging endogenous proliferating cell nuclear antigen in living cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Freund, Guillaume; Desplancq, Dominique; Stoessel, Audrey; Weinsanto, Robin; Sibler, Annie-Paule; Robin, Gautier; Martineau, Pierre; Didier, Pascal; Wagner, Jérôme; Weiss, Etienne

    2014-09-01

    Intrabodies, when expressed in cells after genetic fusion to fluorescent proteins, are powerful tools to study endogenous protein dynamics inside cells. However, it remains challenging to determine the conditions for specific imaging and precise labelling of the target antigen with such intracellularly expressed antibody fragments. Here, we show that single-chain Fv (scFv) antibody fragments can be generated that specifically recognize proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) when expressed in living cancer cells. After selection by phage display, the anti-PCNA scFvs were screened in vitro after being tagged with dimeric glutathione-S-transferase. Anti-PCNA scFvs of increased avidity were further engineered by mutagenesis with sodium bisulfite and error-prone PCR, such that they were almost equivalent to conventional antibodies in in vitro assays. These intrabodies were then rendered bifunctional by fusion to a C-terminal fragment of p21 protein and could thereby readily detect PCNA bound to chromatin in cells. Finally, by linking these optimized peptide-conjugated scFvs to an enhanced green fluorescent protein, fluorescent intrabody-based reagents were obtained that allowed the fate of PCNA in living cells to be examined. The approach described may be applicable to other scFvs that can be solubly expressed in cells, and it provides a unique means to recognize endogenous proteins in living cells with high accuracy.

  14. Self-organization and entropy reduction in a living cell

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Paul C.W.; Rieper, Elisabeth; Tuszynski, Jack A.

    2012-01-01

    In this paper we discuss the entropy and information aspects of a living cell. Particular attention is paid to the information gain on assembling and maintaining a living state. Numerical estimates of the information and entropy reduction are given and discussed in the context of the cell’s metabolic activity. We discuss a solution to an apparent paradox that there is less information content in DNA than in the proteins that are assembled based on the genetic code encrypted in DNA. When energy input required for protein synthesis is accounted for, the paradox is clearly resolved. Finally, differences between biological information and instruction are discussed. PMID:23159919

  15. Photobleaching-Corrected FRET Efficiency Imaging of Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zal, Tomasz; Gascoigne, Nicholas R. J.

    2004-01-01

    Fluorescent resonance energy transfer (FRET) imaging techniques can be used to visualize protein-protein interactions in real-time with subcellular resolution. Imaging of sensitized fluorescence of the acceptor, elicited during excitation of the donor, is becoming the most popular method for live FRET (3-cube imaging) because it is fast, nondestructive, and applicable to existing widefield or confocal microscopes. Most sensitized emission-based FRET indices respond nonlinearly to changes in the degree of molecular interaction and depend on the optical parameters of the imaging system. This makes it difficult to evaluate and compare FRET imaging data between laboratories. Furthermore, photobleaching poses a problem for FRET imaging in timelapse experiments and three-dimensional reconstructions. We present a 3-cube FRET imaging method, E-FRET, which overcomes both of these obstacles. E-FRET bridges the gap between the donor recovery after acceptor photobleaching technique (which allows absolute measurements of FRET efficiency, E, but is not suitable for living cells), and the sensitized-emission FRET indices (which reflect FRET in living cells but lack the quantitation and clarity of E). With E-FRET, we visualize FRET in terms of true FRET efficiency images (E), which correlate linearly with the degree of donor interaction. We have defined procedures to incorporate photobleaching correction into E-FRET imaging. We demonstrate the benefits of E-FRET with photobleaching correction for timelapse and three-dimensional imaging of protein-protein interactions in the immunological synapse in living T-cells. PMID:15189889

  16. Axially resolved polarisation microscopy of membrane dynamics in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, Michael; Weber, Petra; Schneckenburger, Herbert

    2007-07-01

    Membrane dynamics has a large impact on cellular uptake and release of various metabolites or pharmaceutical agents. For a deeper understanding of the cellular processes involved, we used U373-MG human glioblastoma cells as a model system. As conventional microscopy does not permit to investigate individual layers in living cells, we used structured illumination techniques and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (TIRFM) to analyse the plasma membrane and intracellular membranes of living cells selectively. Optical image sections provide a high resolution and the possibility of 3D reconstruction. Membranes of living cells were characterized by the membrane marker 6-dodecanoyl-2-dimethylamino naphthalene (laurdan). Due to its spectral and kinetic properties this fluorescence marker appears appropriate for measuring membrane stiffness and fluidity. After excitation with linearly polarized laser pulses, membrane fluidity of human glioblastoma cells was determined by measurements of steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy r(t), since with increasing viscosity of the environment, the rotation of an excited molecule is impeded. The corresponding time constant τ r of molecular relaxation decreased with temperature and increased with the amount of cholesterol. In addition, fluorescence anisotropy r(t) values of the plasma membrane were larger than the values of intracellular membranes for all temperatures in the range of 16°C<=T<=41°C.

  17. A Stretching Device for High Resolution Live-Cell Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Lawrence; Mathieu, Pattie S.; Helmke, Brian P.

    2012-01-01

    Several custom-built and commercially available devices are available to investigate cellular responses to substrate strain. However, analysis of structural dynamics by microscopy in living cells during stretch is not readily feasible. We describe a novel stretch device optimized for high-resolution live-cell imaging. The unit assembles onto standard inverted microscopes and applies constant magnitude or cyclic stretch at physiological magnitudes to cultured cells on elastic membranes. Interchangeable modular indenters enable delivery of equibiaxial and uniaxial stretch profiles. Strain analysis performed by tracking fluorescent microspheres adhered onto the substrate demonstrated reproducible application of stretch profiles. In endothelial cells transiently expressing EGFP-vimentin and paxillin-DsRed2 and subjected to constant magnitude equibiaxial stretch, the 2-D strain tensor demonstrated efficient transmission through the extracellular matrix and focal adhesions. Decreased transmission to the intermediate filament network was measured, and a heterogeneous spatial distribution of maximum stretch magnitude revealed discrete sites of strain focusing. Spatial correlation of vimentin and paxillin displacement vectors provided an estimate of the extent of mechanical coupling between the structures. Interestingly, switching the spatial profile of substrate strain reveals that actin-mediated edge ruffling is not desensitized to repeated mechano-stimulation. These initial observations show that the stretch device is compatible with live-cell microscopy and is a novel tool for measuring dynamic structural remodeling under mechanical strain. PMID:20195762

  18. [Nucleoplasmic viscosity of living cells investigated by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy].

    PubMed

    Liang, Li-Fang; Da, Xing; Chen, Tong-Sheng; Pei, Yi-Hui

    2009-02-01

    In order to non-invasively investigate nucleoplasmic viscosity in real time with good temporal resolution, the present study firstly introduced a new method based on fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS). FCS is a kind of single-molecule technique with high temporal and spatial resolution to analyze the dynamics of fluorescent molecules in nanomolar concentration. Through a time correlation analysis of spontaneous intensity fluctuations, this technique in conjunction with EGFP as a probe is capable of determining nucleoplasmic viscosity in terms of Stokes-Einstein equation as well as its corresponding analysis of the diffusion coefficient for EGFP in the nucleus. The results showed that nucleoplasmic viscosity of ASTC-a-1 cells and HeLa cells were respectively (2.55 +/- 0.61) cP and (2.04 +/- 0.49) cP at pH 7.4 and 37 degrees C, consistent with the results by traditional methods, and nucleoplasmic viscosity was found to be larger than cytoplasmic viscosity. Meanwhile, the real-time analysis of nucleoplasmic viscosity in living cells exposed to hypotonic media proved that FCS could be used to track the changing rheological characteristics of the nucleoplasm in living cells. Taken together, this study suggests that FCS provides an accurate and non-invasive method to investigate the microenvironment in living cells on the femtoliter scale and it can be used as a powerful tool in researches on the dynamical processes of intracellular molecules.

  19. Optical diffraction tomography for high resolution live cell imaging.

    PubMed

    Sung, Yongjin; Choi, Wonshik; Fang-Yen, Christopher; Badizadegan, Kamran; Dasari, Ramachandra R; Feld, Michael S

    2009-01-05

    We report the experimental implementation of optical diffraction tomography for quantitative 3D mapping of refractive index in live biological cells. Using a heterodyne Mach-Zehnder interferometer, we record complex field images of light transmitted through a sample with varying directions of illumination. To quantitatively reconstruct the 3D map of complex refractive index in live cells, we apply optical diffraction tomography based on the Rytov approximation. In this way, the effect of diffraction is taken into account in the reconstruction process and diffraction-free high resolution 3D images are obtained throughout the entire sample volume. The quantitative refractive index map can potentially serve as an intrinsic assay to provide the molecular concentrations without the addition of exogenous agents and also to provide a method for studying the light scattering properties of single cells.

  20. Synthetic mixed-signal computation in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Rubens, Jacob R.; Selvaggio, Gianluca; Lu, Timothy K.

    2016-01-01

    Living cells implement complex computations on the continuous environmental signals that they encounter. These computations involve both analogue- and digital-like processing of signals to give rise to complex developmental programs, context-dependent behaviours and homeostatic activities. In contrast to natural biological systems, synthetic biological systems have largely focused on either digital or analogue computation separately. Here we integrate analogue and digital computation to implement complex hybrid synthetic genetic programs in living cells. We present a framework for building comparator gene circuits to digitize analogue inputs based on different thresholds. We then demonstrate that comparators can be predictably composed together to build band-pass filters, ternary logic systems and multi-level analogue-to-digital converters. In addition, we interface these analogue-to-digital circuits with other digital gene circuits to enable concentration-dependent logic. We expect that this hybrid computational paradigm will enable new industrial, diagnostic and therapeutic applications with engineered cells. PMID:27255669

  1. Live cell imaging of endosomal trafficking in fungi.

    PubMed

    Baumann, Sebastian; Takeshita, Norio; Grün, Nathalie; Fischer, Reinhard; Feldbrügge, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Endosomes are multipurpose membranous carriers important for endocytosis and secretion. During membrane trafficking, endosomes transport lipids, proteins, and even RNAs. In highly polarized cells such as fungal hyphae, they shuttle bidirectionally along microtubules mediated by molecular motors like kinesins and dynein. For in vivo studies of these highly dynamic protein/membrane complexes, advanced fluorescence microscopy is instrumental. In this chapter, we describe live cell imaging of endosomes in two distantly related fungal model systems, the basidiomycete Ustilago maydis and the ascomycete Aspergillus nidulans. We provide insights into live cell imaging of dynamic endosomal proteins and RNA, dual-color detection for colocalization studies, as well as fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) for quantification and photo-activated localization microscopy (PALM) for super-resolution. These methods described in two well-studied fungal model systems are applicable to a broad range of other organisms.

  2. White-light diffraction tomography of unlabelled live cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Taewoo; Zhou, Renjie; Mir, Mustafa; Babacan, S. Derin; Carney, P. Scott; Goddard, Lynford L.; Popescu, Gabriel

    2014-03-01

    We present a technique called white-light diffraction tomography (WDT) for imaging microscopic transparent objects such as live unlabelled cells. The approach extends diffraction tomography to white-light illumination and imaging rather than scattering plane measurements. Our experiments were performed using a conventional phase contrast microscope upgraded with a module to measure quantitative phase images. The axial dimension of the object was reconstructed by scanning the focus through the object and acquiring a stack of phase-resolved images. We reconstructed the three-dimensional structures of live, unlabelled, red blood cells and compared the results with confocal and scanning electron microscopy images. The 350 nm transverse and 900 nm axial resolution achieved reveals subcellular structures at high resolution in Escherichia coli cells. The results establish WDT as a means for measuring three-dimensional subcellular structures in a non-invasive and label-free manner.

  3. Glycoarray Technologies: Deciphering Interactions from Proteins to Live Cell Responses

    PubMed Central

    Puvirajesinghe, Tania M.; Turnbull, Jeremy. E.

    2016-01-01

    Microarray technologies inspired the development of carbohydrate arrays. Initially, carbohydrate array technology was hindered by the complex structures of glycans and their structural variability. The first designs of glycoarrays focused on the HTP (high throughput) study of protein–glycan binding events, and subsequently more in-depth kinetic analysis of carbohydrate–protein interactions. However, the applications have rapidly expanded and now achieve successful discrimination of selective interactions between carbohydrates and, not only proteins, but also viruses, bacteria and eukaryotic cells, and most recently even live cell responses to immobilized glycans. Combining array technology with other HTP technologies such as mass spectrometry is expected to allow even more accurate and sensitive analysis. This review provides a broad overview of established glycoarray technologies (with a special focus on glycosaminoglycan applications) and their emerging applications to the study of complex interactions between glycans and whole living cells. PMID:27600069

  4. Quantum dots targeted to the assigned organelle in living cells.

    PubMed

    Hoshino, Akiyoshi; Fujioka, Kouki; Oku, Taisuke; Nakamura, Shun; Suga, Masakazu; Yamaguchi, Yukio; Suzuki, Kazuo; Yasuhara, Masato; Yamamoto, Kenji

    2004-01-01

    Fluorescent nanocrystal quantum dots (QDs) have the potential to be applied to bioimaging since QDs emit higher and far longer fluorescence than conventional organic probes. Here we show that QDs conjugated with signal peptide obey the order to transport the assigned organelle in living cells. We designed the supermolecule of luminescent QDs conjugated with nuclear- and mitochondria-targeting ligands. When QDs with nuclear-localizing signal peptides were added to the culture media, we can visualize the movements of the QDs being delivered into the nuclear compartment of the cells with 15 min incubation. In addition, mitochondrial signal peptide can also transport QDs to the mitochondria in living cells. In conclusion, these techniques have the possibility that QDs can reveal the transduction of proteins and peptides into specific subcellular compartments as a powerful tool for studying intracellular analysis in vitro and even in vivo.

  5. Copper-Catalyzed Click Reaction on/in Live Cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Siheng; Wang, Lin; Yu, Fei; Zhu, Zhiling; Shobaki, Dema; Chen, Haoqing; Wang, Mu; Wang, Jun; Qin, Guoting; Erasquin, Uriel J; Ren, Li; Wang, Yingjun; Cai, Chengzhi

    2017-03-01

    We demonstrated that copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition (CuAAC) reaction could be performed inside live mammalian cells without using a chelating azide. Under optimized conditions, the reaction was performed in human ovary cancer cell line OVCAR5 in which newly synthesized proteins were metabolically modified with homopropargylglycine (HPG). This model system allowed us to estimate the efficiency of the reaction on the cell membranes and in the cytosol using mass spectrometry. We found that the reaction was greatly promoted by a tris(triazolylmethyl)amine Cu(I) ligand tethering a cell-penetrating peptide. Uptake of the ligand, copper, and a biotin-tagged azide in the cells was determined to be 69 ± 2, 163 ± 3 and 1.3 ± 0.1 µM, respectively. After 10 minutes of reaction, the product yields on the membrane and cytosolic proteins were higher than 18% and 0.8%, respectively, while 75% cells remained viable. By reducing the biothiols in the system by scraping or treatment with N-ethylmalemide, the reaction yield on the cytosolic proteins was greatly improved to ~9% and ~14%, respectively, while the yield on the membrane proteins remained unchanged. The results indicate that out of many possibilities, deactivation of the current copper catalysts by biothiols is the major reason for the low yield of CuAAC reaction in the cytosol. Overall, we have improved the efficiency for CuAAC reaction on live cells by 3-fold. Despite the low yielding inside live cells, the products that strongly bind to the intracellular targets can be detected by mass spectrometry. Hence, the in situ CuAAC reaction can be potentially used for screening of cell-specific enzyme inhibitors or biomarkers containing 1,4-substituted 1,2,3-triazoles.

  6. Microfluidic Devices for Terahertz Spectroscopy of Live Cells Toward Lab-on-a-Chip Applications.

    PubMed

    Tang, Qi; Liang, Min; Lu, Yi; Wong, Pak Kin; Wilmink, Gerald J; Zhang, Donna; Xin, Hao

    2016-04-04

    THz spectroscopy is an emerging technique for studying the dynamics and interactions of cells and biomolecules, but many practical challenges still remain in experimental studies. We present a prototype of simple and inexpensive cell-trapping microfluidic chip for THz spectroscopic study of live cells. Cells are transported, trapped and concentrated into the THz exposure region by applying an AC bias signal while the chip maintains a steady temperature at 37 °C by resistive heating. We conduct some preliminary experiments on E. coli and T-cell solution and compare the transmission spectra of empty channels, channels filled with aqueous media only, and channels filled with aqueous media with un-concentrated and concentrated cells.

  7. Microfluidic Devices for Terahertz Spectroscopy of Live Cells Toward Lab-on-a-Chip Applications

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Qi; Liang, Min; Lu, Yi; Wong, Pak Kin; Wilmink, Gerald J.; D. Zhang, Donna; Xin, Hao

    2016-01-01

    THz spectroscopy is an emerging technique for studying the dynamics and interactions of cells and biomolecules, but many practical challenges still remain in experimental studies. We present a prototype of simple and inexpensive cell-trapping microfluidic chip for THz spectroscopic study of live cells. Cells are transported, trapped and concentrated into the THz exposure region by applying an AC bias signal while the chip maintains a steady temperature at 37 °C by resistive heating. We conduct some preliminary experiments on E. coli and T-cell solution and compare the transmission spectra of empty channels, channels filled with aqueous media only, and channels filled with aqueous media with un-concentrated and concentrated cells. PMID:27049392

  8. Endogenous Fluorescence Signatures in Living Pluripotent Stem Cells Change with Loss of Potency

    PubMed Central

    Squirrell, Jayne M.; Fong, Jimmy J.; Ariza, Carlos A.; Mael, Amber; Meyer, Kassondra; Shevde, Nirupama K.; Roopra, Avtar; Lyons, Gary E.; Kamp, Timothy J.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.; Ogle, Brenda M.

    2012-01-01

    The therapeutic potential of stem cells is limited by the non-uniformity of their phenotypic state. Thus it would be advantageous to noninvasively monitor stem cell status. Driven by this challenge, we employed multidimensional multiphoton microscopy to quantify changes in endogenous fluorescence occurring with pluripotent stem cell differentiation. We found that global and cellular-scale fluorescence lifetime of human embryonic stem cells (hESC) and murine embryonic stem cells (mESC) consistently decreased with differentiation. Less consistent were trends in endogenous fluorescence intensity with differentiation, suggesting intensity is more readily impacted by nuances of species and scale of analysis. What emerges is a practical and accessible approach to evaluate, and ultimately enrich, living stem cell populations based on changes in metabolism that could be exploited for both research and clinical applications. PMID:22952742

  9. From surface to intracellular non-invasive nanoscale study of living cells impairments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewald, M.; Tetard, L.; Elie-Caille, C.; Nicod, L.; Passian, A.; Bourillot, E.; Lesniewska, E.

    2014-07-01

    Among the enduring challenges in nanoscience, subsurface characterization of living cells holds major stakes. Developments in nanometrology for soft matter thriving on the sensitivity and high resolution benefits of atomic force microscopy have enabled detection of subsurface structures at the nanoscale. However, measurements in liquid environments remain complex, in particular in the subsurface domain. Here we introduce liquid-mode synthesizing atomic force microscopy (l-MSAFM) to study both the inner structures and the chemically induced intracellular impairments of living cells. Specifically, we visualize the intracellular stress effects of glyphosate on living keratinocytes skin cells. This new approach, l-MSAFM, for nanoscale imaging of living cell in their physiological environment or in presence of a chemical stress agent could resolve the loss of inner structures induced by glyphosate, the main component of a well-known pesticide (RoundUp™). This firsthand ability to monitor the cell’s inner response to external stimuli non-destructively and in liquid, has the potential to unveil critical nanoscale mechanisms of life science.

  10. Foundations and Emerging Paradigms for Computing in Living Cells.

    PubMed

    Ma, Kevin C; Perli, Samuel D; Lu, Timothy K

    2016-02-27

    Genetic circuits, composed of complex networks of interacting molecular machines, enable living systems to sense their dynamic environments, perform computation on the inputs, and formulate appropriate outputs. By rewiring and expanding these circuits with novel parts and modules, synthetic biologists have adapted living systems into vibrant substrates for engineering. Diverse paradigms have emerged for designing, modeling, constructing, and characterizing such artificial genetic systems. In this paper, we first provide an overview of recent advances in the development of genetic parts and highlight key engineering approaches. We then review the assembly of these parts into synthetic circuits from the perspectives of digital and analog logic, systems biology, and metabolic engineering, three areas of particular theoretical and practical interest. Finally, we discuss notable challenges that the field of synthetic biology still faces in achieving reliable and predictable forward-engineering of artificial biological circuits.

  11. Traceless affinity labeling of endogenous proteins for functional analysis in living cells.

    PubMed

    Hayashi, Takahiro; Hamachi, Itaru

    2012-09-18

    Protein labeling and imaging techniques have provided tremendous opportunities to study the structure, function, dynamics, and localization of individual proteins in the complex environment of living cells. Molecular biology-based approaches, such as GFP-fusion tags and monoclonal antibodies, have served as important tools for the visualization of individual proteins in cells. Although these techniques continue to be valuable for live cell imaging, they have a number of limitations that have only been addressed by recent progress in chemistry-based approaches. These chemical approaches benefit greatly from the smaller probe sizes that should result in fewer perturbations to proteins and to biological systems as a whole. Despite the research in this area, so far none of these labeling techniques permit labeling and imaging of selected endogenous proteins in living cells. Researchers have widely used affinity labeling, in which the protein of interest is labeled by a reactive group attached to a ligand, to identify and characterize proteins. Since the first report of affinity labeling in the early 1960s, efforts to fine-tune the chemical structures of both the reactive group and ligand have led to protein labeling with excellent target selectivity in the whole proteome of living cells. Although the chemical probes used for affinity labeling generally inactivate target proteins, this strategy holds promise as a valuable tool for the labeling and imaging of endogenous proteins in living cells and by extension in living animals. In this Account, we summarize traceless affinity labeling, a technique explored mainly in our laboratory. In our overview of the different labeling techniques, we emphasize the challenge of designing chemical probes that allow for dissociation of the affinity module (often a ligand) after the labeling reaction so that the labeled protein retains its native function. This feature distinguishes the traceless labeling approach from the traditional

  12. Skin vaccination with live virus vectored microneedle arrays induce long lived CD8(+) T cell memory.

    PubMed

    Becker, Pablo D; Hervouet, Catherine; Mason, Gavin M; Kwon, Sung-Yun; Klavinskis, Linda S

    2015-09-08

    A simple dissolvable microneedle array (MA) platform has emerged as a promising technology for vaccine delivery, due to needle-free injection with a formulation that preserves the immunogenicity of live viral vectored vaccines dried in the MA matrix. While recent studies have focused largely on design parameters optimized to induce primary CD8(+) T cell responses, the hallmark of a vaccine is synonymous with engendering long-lasting memory. Here, we address the capacity of dried MA vaccination to programme phenotypic markers indicative of effector/memory CD8(+) T cell subsets and also responsiveness to recall antigen benchmarked against conventional intradermal (ID) injection. We show that despite a slightly lower frequency of dividing T cell receptor transgenic CD8(+) T cells in secondary lymphoid tissue at an early time point, the absolute number of CD8(+) T cells expressing an effector memory (CD62L(-)CD127(+)) and central memory (CD62L(+)CD127(+)) phenotype during peak expansion were comparable after MA and ID vaccination with a recombinant human adenovirus type 5 vector (AdHu5) encoding HIV-1 gag. Similarly, both vaccination routes generated CD8(+) memory T cell subsets detected in draining LNs for at least two years post-vaccination capable of responding to secondary antigen. These data suggest that CD8(+) T cell effector/memory generation and long-term memory is largely unaffected by physical differences in vaccine delivery to the skin via dried MA or ID suspension.

  13. A drug-compatible and temperature-controlled microfluidic device for live-cell imaging

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Tong; Gomez-Escoda, Blanca; Munoz-Garcia, Javier; Babic, Julien; Griscom, Laurent; Wu, Pei-Yun Jenny

    2016-01-01

    Monitoring cellular responses to changes in growth conditions and perturbation of targeted pathways is integral to the investigation of biological processes. However, manipulating cells and their environment during live-cell-imaging experiments still represents a major challenge. While the coupling of microfluidics with microscopy has emerged as a powerful solution to this problem, this approach remains severely underexploited. Indeed, most microdevices rely on the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), which strongly absorbs a variety of molecules commonly used in cell biology. This effect of the microsystems on the cellular environment hampers our capacity to accurately modulate the composition of the medium and the concentration of specific compounds within the microchips, with implications for the reliability of these experiments. To overcome this critical issue, we developed new PDMS-free microdevices dedicated to live-cell imaging that show no interference with small molecules. They also integrate a module for maintaining precise sample temperature both above and below ambient as well as for rapid temperature shifts. Importantly, changes in medium composition and temperature can be efficiently achieved within the chips while recording cell behaviour by microscopy. Compatible with different model systems, our platforms provide a versatile solution for the dynamic regulation of the cellular environment during live-cell imaging. PMID:27512142

  14. Jet-based methods to print living cells.

    PubMed

    Ringeisen, Bradley R; Othon, Christina M; Barron, Jason A; Young, Daniel; Spargo, Barry J

    2006-09-01

    Cell printing has been popularized over the past few years as a revolutionary advance in tissue engineering has potentially enabled heterogeneous 3-D scaffolds to be built cell-by-cell. This review article summarizes the state-of-the-art cell printing techniques that utilize fluid jetting phenomena to deposit 2- and 3-D patterns of living eukaryotic cells. There are four distinct categories of jetbased approaches to printing cells. Laser guidance direct write (LG DW) was the first reported technique to print viable cells by forming patterns of embryonic-chick spinal-cord cells on a glass slide (1999). Shortly after this, modified laser-induced forward transfer techniques (LIFT) and modified ink jet printers were also used to print viable cells, followed by the most recent demonstration using an electrohydrodynamic jetting (EHDJ) method. The low cost of some of these printing technologies has spurred debate as to whether they could be used on a large scale to manufacture tissue and possibly even whole organs. This review summarizes the published results of these cell printers (cell viability, retained genotype and phenotype), and also includes a physical description of the various jetting processes with a discussion of the stresses and forces that may be encountered by cells during printing. We conclude the review by comparing and contrasting the different jet-based techniques, while providing a map for future experiments that could lead to significant advances in the field of tissue engineering.

  15. Scanning Ion Conductance Microscopy for living cell membrane potential measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panday, Namuna

    Recently, the existence of multiple micro-domains of extracellular potential around individual cells have been revealed by voltage reporter dye using fluorescence microscopy. One hypothesis is that these long lasting potential patterns play a vital role in regulating important cell activities such as embryonic patterning, regenerative repair and reduction of cancerous disorganization. We used multifunctional Scanning Ion Conductance Microscopy (SICM) to study these extracellular potential patterns of single cell with higher spatial resolution. To validate this novel technique, we compared the extracellular potential distribution on the fixed HeLa cell surface and Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) surface and found significant difference. We then measured the extracellular potential distributions of living melanocytes and melanoma cells and found both the mean magnitude and spatial variation of extracellular potential of the melanoma cells are bigger than those of melanocytes. As compared to the voltage reporter dye based fluorescence microscope method, SICM can achieve quantitative potential measurements of non-labeled living cell membranes with higher spatial resolution.

  16. Assembly dynamics of PML nuclear bodies in living cells.

    PubMed

    Brand, Peter; Lenser, Thorsten; Hemmerich, Peter

    2010-03-05

    The mammalian cell nucleus contains a variety of organelles or nuclear bodies which contribute to key nuclear functions. Promyelocytic leukemia nuclear bodies (PML NBs) are involved in the regulation of apoptosis, antiviral responses, the DNA damage response and chromatin structure, but their precise biochemical function in these nuclear pathways is unknown. One strategy to tackle this problem is to assess the biophysical properties of the component parts of these macromolecular assemblies in living cells. In this study we determined PML NB assembly dynamics by live cell imaging, combined with mathematical modeling. For the first time, dynamics of PML body formation were measured in cells lacking endogenous PML. We show that all six human nuclear PML isoforms are able to form nuclear bodies in PML negative cells. All isoforms exhibit individual exchange rates at NBs in PML positive cells but PML I, II, III and IV are static at nuclear bodies in PML negative cells, suggesting that these isoforms require additional protein partners for efficient exchange. PML V turns over at PML Nbs very slowly supporting the idea of a structural function for this isoform. We also demonstrate that SUMOylation of PML at Lysine positions K160 and/or K490 are required for nuclear body formation in vivo.We propose a model in which the isoform specific residence times of PML provide both, structural stability to function as a scaffold and flexibility to attract specific nuclear proteins for efficient biochemical reactions at the surface of nuclear bodies.MCS code: 92C37.

  17. Combined fluorescence and ultrastructural mapping of living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohen, Elli; Hirschberg, Joseph G.; Kohen, Cahide; Prince, Jeffrey; Suckewer, Szymon; Santus, Rene C.; Morliere, Patrice; Dubertret, Louis

    1990-05-01

    The topographic analysis of fluorescence distribution has been carried out pixel-by-pixel by one dimensional, two-dimensional microspectrofluorometry and three-dimensional confocal fluorescence microscopy. Fluorescence emission spectra of NAD(P)H and benzo(a)pyrene (or metabolites) were recorded at different excitation wavelengths. Cell bioenergetics are monitored in normal and malignant cells as well as cells with genetic defects by coenzyme responses to microinjections of substrates and modifiers from key metabolic pathways in presence and absence of inhibitors and drugs active on mitochondrial structure and function. Cooperative interactions between organelles involved in detoxification mechanisms are observed in cells treated with fluorescent cytotoxic agents. Such interactions can be directly mapped by the fluorescence of cytotoxic agents, their reaction products or vital probes such as NBD ceramide for the Golgi apparatus. To identify the organelles involved parallel electron microscopic studies are carried out in cells first treated with the cytotoxic agent and then incubated with an electron opaque material. A recently developed combined X-ray laser microscope (COXRALM) holds the promise of carrying out combined phase-fluorescence-and X-ray microscopic observations of fluorescence and ultrastructural correlations in live cell probing. As further versatility is gained in such methods it may become possible to obtain a very detailed structure and function mapping of living cells within the context of cytomatrix analysis, metabolic compartmentation and organelle interactions.

  18. Cross Talk Free Fluorescence Cross Correlation Spectroscopy in Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Thews, Elmar; Gerken, Margarita; Eckert, Reiner; Zäpfel, Johannes; Tietz, Carsten; Wrachtrup, Jörg

    2005-01-01

    Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) is now a widely used technique to measure small ensembles of labeled biomolecules with single molecule detection sensitivity (e.g., low endogenous concentrations). Fluorescence cross correlation spectroscopy (FCCS) is a derivative of this technique that detects the synchronous movement of two biomolecules with different fluorescence labels. Both methods can be applied to live cells and, therefore, can be used to address a variety of unsolved questions in cell biology. Applications of FCCS with autofluorescent proteins (AFPs) have been hampered so far by cross talk between the detector channels due to the large spectral overlap of the fluorophores. Here we present a new method that combines advantages of these techniques to analyze binding behavior of proteins in live cells. To achieve this, we have used dual color excitation of a common pair of AFPs, ECFP and EYFP, being discriminated in excitation rather than in emission. This is made possible by pulsed excitation and detection on a shorter timescale compared to the average residence time of particles in the FCS volume element. By this technique we were able to eliminate cross talk in the detector channels and obtain an undisturbed cross correlation signal. The setup was tested with ECFP/EYFP lysates as well as chimeras as negative and positive controls and demonstrated to work in live HeLa cells coexpressing the two fusion proteins ECFP-connexin and EYFP-connexin. PMID:15951373

  19. Imaging Live Cells at the Nanometer-Scale with Single-Molecule Microscopy: Obstacles and Achievements in Experiment Optimization for Microbiology

    PubMed Central

    Haas, Beth L.; Matson, Jyl S.; DiRita, Victor J.; Biteen, Julie S.

    2015-01-01

    Single-molecule fluorescence microscopy enables biological investigations inside living cells to achieve millisecond- and nanometer-scale resolution. Although single-molecule-based methods are becoming increasingly accessible to non-experts, optimizing new single-molecule experiments can be challenging, in particular when super-resolution imaging and tracking are applied to live cells. In this review, we summarize common obstacles to live-cell single-molecule microscopy and describe the methods we have developed and applied to overcome these challenges in live bacteria. We examine the choice of fluorophore and labeling scheme, approaches to achieving single-molecule levels of fluorescence, considerations for maintaining cell viability, and strategies for detecting single-molecule signals in the presence of noise and sample drift. We also discuss methods for analyzing single-molecule trajectories and the challenges presented by the finite size of a bacterial cell and the curvature of the bacterial membrane. PMID:25123183

  20. Multiplexed nanoflares: mRNA detection in live cells.

    PubMed

    Prigodich, Andrew E; Randeria, Pratik S; Briley, William E; Kim, Nathaniel J; Daniel, Weston L; Giljohann, David A; Mirkin, Chad A

    2012-02-21

    We report the development of the multiplexed nanoflare, a nanoparticle agent that is capable of simultaneously detecting two distinct mRNA targets inside a living cell. These probes are spherical nucleic acid (SNA) gold nanoparticle (Au NP) conjugates consisting of densely packed and highly oriented oligonucleotide sequences, many of which are hybridized to a reporter with a distinct fluorophore label and each complementary to its corresponding mRNA target. When multiplexed nanoflares are exposed to their targets, they provide a sequence specific signal in both extra- and intracellular environments. Importantly, one of the targets can be used as an internal control, improving detection by accounting for cell-to-cell variations in nanoparticle uptake and background. Compared to single-component nanoflares, these structures allow one to determine more precisely relative mRNA levels in individual cells, improving cell sorting and quantification.

  1. Modeling the dynamics of dendritic actin waves in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wasnik, Vaibhav; Mukhopadhyay, Ranjan

    2014-11-01

    The actin cytoskeleton in living cells exhibits a high degree of capacity for dynamic self-organization. Recent experiments have observed propagating actin waves in Dictyostelium cells recovering from complete depolymerization of their actin cytoskeleton. The propagation of these waves appear to be dependent on a programmed recruitment of a few proteins that control actin assembly and disassembly. Such waves also arise spontaneously along the plasma membrane of the cell, and it has been suggested that actin waves enable the cell to scan a surface for particles to engulf. Based on known molecular components involved in wave propagation, we present and study a minimal reaction-diffusion model for actin wave production observed in recovering cells.

  2. GFP-based FRET analysis in live cells.

    PubMed

    Takanishi, Christina L; Bykova, Ekaterina A; Cheng, Wei; Zheng, Jie

    2006-05-26

    Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a widely utilized optical technique for measuring small distances of 1-10 nm in live cells. In recent years, its application has been greatly popularized by the discovery of green fluorescent protein (GFP) and many improved variants which make good donor-acceptor fluorophore pairs. GFP-based proteins are structurally stable, relatively inert, and can be reliably attached to points of interest. The combination of easy access to the GFP-based FRET technique and its obvious usefulness in many applications can lead to complacency. Potential problems such as light contaminants, e.g., bleed-through and cross-talk, and inconsistent donor and acceptor concentrations are easily overlooked and can lead to errors in FRET calculation and data interpretation. In this article, we outline possible pitfalls of GFP-based FRET and approaches that address these issues, including a "Spectra FRET" technique that can be easily applied to live cell studies.

  3. Gold nanoshell bioconjugates for molecular imaging in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loo, Christopher; Hirsch, Leon; Lee, Min-Ho; Chang, Emmanuel; West, Jennifer; Halas, Naomi; Drezek, Rebekah

    2005-05-01

    Advances in scattering-based optical imaging technologies offer a new approach to noninvasive point-of-care detection, diagnosis, and monitoring of cancer. Emerging photonics technologies provide a cost-effective means to image tissue in vivo with high resolution in real time. Advancing the clinical potential of these imaging strategies requires the development of optical contrast agents targeted to specific molecular signatures of disease. We describe the use of a novel class of contrast agents based on nanoshell bioconjugates for molecular imaging in living cells. Nanoshells offer significant advantages over conventional imaging probes including continuous and broad wavelength tunability, far greater scattering and absorption coefficients, increased chemical stability, and improved biocompatibility. We show that nanoshell bioconjugates can be used to effectively target and image human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2), a clinically relevant biomarker, in live human breast carcinoma cells.

  4. High-speed synthetic aperture microscopy for live cell imaging

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Moonseok; Choi, Youngwoon; Fang-Yen, Christopher; Sung, Yongjin; Dasari, Ramachandra R.; Feld, Michael S.; Choi, Wonshik

    2011-01-01

    We present a high-speed synthetic aperture microscopy for quantitative phase imaging of live biological cells. We measure 361 complex amplitude images of an object with various directions of illumination covering an NA of 0.8 in less than one-thirteenth of a second and then combine the images with a phase-referencing method to create a synthesized phase image. Because of the increased depth selectivity, artifacts from diffraction that are typically present in coherent imaging are significantly suppressed, and lateral resolution of phase imaging is improved. We use the instrument to demonstrate high-quality phase imaging of live cells, both static and dynamic, and thickness measurements of a nanoscale cholesterol helical ribbon. PMID:21263482

  5. Nucleoplasmic viscosity of living cells investigated by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Lifang; Xing, Da; Chen, Tongshen; Pei, Yihui

    2007-11-01

    Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) is a new kind of real-time, high-speed and single-molecule technique. It is used to detect the kinetic characteristics of fluorescent dye such as diffusion coefficient in the aqueous solution. Combined with confocal microscope optics, it has been now widely applied in cell biological research. Through a time correlation analysis of spontaneous intensity fluctuations, this technique with EGFP as a probe is capable of determining viscosity of fluids according to Stokes-Einstein equation. Nucleoplasmic viscosity is an important physical parameter to quantify the rheological characteristics of the nucleoplasm. Investigation on nucleoplasmic viscosity plays an important role in further understanding intranuclear environment. In this paper, FCS is introduced to noninvasively investigate nucleoplasmic viscosity of living cells. The results show that nucleoplasmic viscosity of lung adenocarcinoma (ASTC-a-1) cells is 2.55+/-0.61 cP and nucleoplasmic viscosity is larger than cytoplasmic viscosity at 37 °C (pH 7.4). In addition, significant changes in nucleoplasmic viscosity are detected by FCS when cells are exposed to hyper or hypotonic medium. Our study suggests that FCS can be used to detect the kinetic characteristics of biomolecules in living cells and thus helps to investigate the dynamic changes of the microenvironment in the cell.

  6. Live Imaging of Adult Neural Stem Cells in Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Ortega, Felipe; Costa, Marcos R.

    2016-01-01

    The generation of cells of the neural lineage within the brain is not restricted to early development. New neurons, oligodendrocytes, and astrocytes are produced in the adult brain throughout the entire murine life. However, despite the extensive research performed in the field of adult neurogenesis during the past years, fundamental questions regarding the cell biology of adult neural stem cells (aNSCs) remain to be uncovered. For instance, it is crucial to elucidate whether a single aNSC is capable of differentiating into all three different macroglial cell types in vivo or these distinct progenies constitute entirely separate lineages. Similarly, the cell cycle length, the time and mode of division (symmetric vs. asymmetric) that these cells undergo within their lineage progression are interesting questions under current investigation. In this sense, live imaging constitutes a valuable ally in the search of reliable answers to the previous questions. In spite of the current limitations of technology new approaches are being developed and outstanding amount of knowledge is being piled up providing interesting insights in the behavior of aNSCs. Here, we will review the state of the art of live imaging as well as the alternative models that currently offer new answers to critical questions. PMID:27013941

  7. Miniaturized biological and electrochemical fuel cells: challenges and applications.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jie; Ghobadian, Sasan; Goodrich, Payton J; Montazami, Reza; Hashemi, Nastaran

    2013-09-14

    This paper discusses the fundamentals and developments of miniaturized fuel cells, both biological and electrochemical. An overview of microfluidic fuel cells, miniaturized microbial fuel cells, enzymatic biofuel cells, and implanted biofuel cells in an attempt to provide green energy and to power implanted microdevices is provided. Also, the challenges and applications of each type of fuel cell are discussed in detail. Most recent developments in fuel cell technologies such as novel catalysts, compact designs, and fabrication methods are reviewed.

  8. Laser-based techniques for living cell pattern formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hopp, Béla; Smausz, Tomi; Papdi, Bence; Bor, Zsolt; Szabó, András; Kolozsvári, Lajos; Fotakis, Costas; Nógrádi, Antal

    2008-10-01

    In the production of biosensors or artificial tissues a basic step is the immobilization of living cells along the required pattern. In this paper the ability of some promising laser-based methods to influence the interaction between cells and various surfaces is presented. In the first set of experiments laser-induced patterned photochemical modification of polymer foils was used to achieve guided adherence and growth of cells to the modified areas: (a) Polytetrafluoroethylene was irradiated with ArF excimer laser ( λ=193 nm, FWHM=20 ns, F=9 mJ/cm2) in presence of triethylene tetramine liquid photoreagent; (b) a thin carbon layer was produced by KrF excimer laser ( λ=248 nm, FWHM=30 ns, F=35 mJ/cm2) irradiation on polyimide surface to influence the cell adherence. It was found that the incorporation of amine groups in the PTFE polymer chain instead of the fluorine atoms can both promote and prevent the adherence of living cells (depending on the applied cell types) on the treated surfaces, while the laser generated carbon layer on polyimide surface did not effectively improve adherence. Our attempts to influence the cell adherence by morphological modifications created by ArF laser irradiation onto polyethylene terephtalate surface showed a surface roughness dependence. This method was effective only when the Ra roughness parameter of the developed structure did not exceed the 0.1 micrometer value. Pulsed laser deposition with femtosecond KrF excimer lasers ( F=2.2 J/cm2) was effectively used to deposit structured thin films from biomaterials (endothelial cell growth supplement and collagen embedded in starch matrix) to promote the adherence and growth of cells. These results present evidence that some surface can be successfully altered to induce guided cell growth.

  9. Automatic Detection of Single Fluorophores in Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Mashanov, G. I.; Molloy, J. E.

    2007-01-01

    Recent developments in light microscopy enable individual fluorophores to be observed in aqueous conditions. Biological molecules, labeled with a single fluorophore, can be localized as isolated spots of light when viewed by optical microscopy. Total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy greatly reduces background fluorescence and allows single fluorophores to be observed inside living cells. This advance in live-cell imaging means that the spatial and temporal dynamics of individual molecules can be measured directly. Because of the stochastic nature of single molecule behavior a statistically meaningful number of individual molecules must be detected and their separate trajectories in space and time stored and analyzed. Here, we describe digital image processing methods that we have devised for automatic detection and tracking of hundreds of molecules, observed simultaneously, in vitro and within living cells. Using this technique we have measured the diffusive behavior of pleckstrin homology domains bound to phosphoinositide phospholipids at the plasma membrane of live cultured mammalian cells. We found that mobility of these membrane-bound protein domains is dominated by mobility of the lipid molecule to which they are attached and is highly temperature dependent. Movement of PH domains isolated from the tail region of myosin-10 is consistent with a simple random walk, whereas, diffusion of intact PLC-δ1 shows behavior inconsistent with a simple random walk. Movement is rapid over short timescales but much slower at longer timescales. This anomalous behavior can be explained by movement being restricted to membrane regions of 0.7 μm diameter. PMID:17208981

  10. Environment Sensing Merocyanine Dyes for Live Cell Imaging Applications

    PubMed Central

    MacNevin, Christopher J.; Gremyachinskiy, Dmitriy; Hsu, Chia-Wen; Li, Li; Rougie, Marie; Davis, Tamara T.; Hahn, Klaus M.

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescent biosensors based on environmentally sensitive dyes enable visualization and quantification of endogenous protein activation within living cells. Merocyanine dyes are especially useful for live cell imaging applications as they are extraordinarily bright, have long wavelengths of excitation and emission, and can exhibit readily detectable fluorescence changes in response to environment. We sought to systematically examine the effects of structural features on key photophysical properties, including dye brightness, environmental responsiveness, and photostability, through the synthesis of a library of 25 merocyanine dyes, derived from combinatorial reaction of 5 donor and 5 acceptor heterocycles. Four of these dyes showed optimal properties for specific imaging applications and were subsequently prepared with reactive side chains and enhanced aqueous solubility using a one-pot synthetic method. The new dyes were then applied within a biosensor design for Cdc42 activation, where dye mero60 showed a remarkable 1470% increase in fluorescence intensity on binding activated Cdc42 in vitro. The dye-based biosensors were used to report activation of endogenous Cdc42 in living cells. PMID:23297747

  11. Insights into nuclear dynamics using live-cell imaging approaches.

    PubMed

    Bigley, Rachel B; Payumo, Alexander Y; Alexander, Jeffrey M; Huang, Guo N

    2017-03-01

    The nucleus contains the genetic blueprint of the cell and myriad interactions within this subcellular structure are required for gene regulation. In the current scientific era, characterization of these gene regulatory networks through biochemical techniques coupled with systems-wide 'omic' approaches has become commonplace. However, these strategies are limited because they represent a mere snapshot of the cellular state. To obtain a holistic understanding of nuclear dynamics, relevant molecules must be studied in their native contexts in living systems. Live-cell imaging approaches are capable of providing quantitative assessment of the dynamics of gene regulatory interactions within the nucleus. We survey recent insights into what live-cell imaging approaches have provided the field of nuclear dynamics. In this review, we focus on interactions of DNA with other DNA loci, proteins, RNA, and the nuclear envelope. WIREs Syst Biol Med 2017, 9:e1372. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1372 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.

  12. Development and application of 2-color live-cell STED nanoscopy (Conference Presentation)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allgeyer, Edward S.; Bottanelli, Francesca; Kromann, Emil B.; Hao, Xiang; Bewersdorf, Joerg

    2016-02-01

    Stimulated emission depletion (STED) microscopy has been established as an important technique for imaging below the diffraction limit facilitating new discoveries in an array of biological systems. In STED microscopy a "donut-shaped" laser focus is super-imposed onto the diffraction-limited focus of an excitation laser. The dounut-shaped beam suppresses fluorescence in the periphery of the excitation spot, reducing the effective point spread function to a sub-diffraction size. However, the application of multicolor STED microscopy in living cells poses a number of challenges. Here we detail a novel STED system specifically designed for two-color STED applications. Our system employs FPGA-based gated detection and fast beam scanning to reduce pixel dwell time and photobleaching. We demonstrate the instrument's capability with two-color continuous imaging of intracellular targets below the diffraction limit allowing observation of rare events within live-cells.

  13. Nanomolar pyrophosphate detection and nucleus staining in living cells with simple terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chao, Duobin; Ni, Shitan

    2016-05-01

    Great efforts have been made to develop fluorescent probes for pyrophosphate (PPi) detection. Nucleus staining with fluorescence microscopy has been also widely investigated. But fluorescent probes for PPi detection with high sensitivity in water medium and nucleus staining with low–cost non–precious metal complexes in living cells are still challenging. Herein, we report simple terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes for selective nanomolar PPi detection over ATP and ADP in water based on aggregation induced emission (AIE) and intramolecular charge transfer (ICT). In addition, these terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes were successfully employed for nucleus staining in living cells. These results demonstrated simply obtained terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes are powerful tool for PPi detection and the development of PPi–related studies.

  14. Nanomolar pyrophosphate detection and nucleus staining in living cells with simple terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes

    PubMed Central

    Chao, Duobin; Ni, Shitan

    2016-01-01

    Great efforts have been made to develop fluorescent probes for pyrophosphate (PPi) detection. Nucleus staining with fluorescence microscopy has been also widely investigated. But fluorescent probes for PPi detection with high sensitivity in water medium and nucleus staining with low–cost non–precious metal complexes in living cells are still challenging. Herein, we report simple terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes for selective nanomolar PPi detection over ATP and ADP in water based on aggregation induced emission (AIE) and intramolecular charge transfer (ICT). In addition, these terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes were successfully employed for nucleus staining in living cells. These results demonstrated simply obtained terpyridine–Zn(II) complexes are powerful tool for PPi detection and the development of PPi–related studies. PMID:27198968

  15. Intracellular protein target detection by quantum dots optimized for live cell imaging.

    PubMed

    Choi, Youngseon; Kim, Keumhyun; Hong, Sukmin; Kim, Hichul; Kwon, Yong-Jun; Song, Rita

    2011-08-17

    Imaging of specific intracellular target proteins in living cells has been of great challenge and importance for understanding intracellular events and elucidating various biological phenomena. Highly photoluminescent and water-soluble semiconductor nanocrystal quantum dots (QDs) have been extensively applied to various cellular imaging applications due to the long-term photostability and the tunable narrow emission spectra with broad excitation. Despite the great success of various bioimaging and diagnostic applications, visualization of intracellular targets in live cells still has been of great challenge. Nonspecific binding, difficulty of intracellular delivery, or endosomal trapping of nanosized QDs are the main reasons to hamper specific target binding in live cells. In this context, we prepared the polymer-coated QDs (pcQD) of which the surface was optimized for specific intracellular targeting in live cells. Efficient intracellular delivery was achieved through PEGylation and subsequent cell penetrating peptide (i.e., TAT) conjugation to the pcQD in order to avoid significant endosomal sequestration and to facilitate internalization of the QDs, respectively. In this study, we employed HEK293 cell line overexpressing endothelin A receptor (ET(A)R), a family of G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR), of which the cytosolic c-terminal site is genetically engineered to possess green fluorescent protein (GFP) as our intracellular protein target. The fluorescence signal of the target protein and the well-defined intracellular behavior of the GPCR help to evaluate the targeting specificity of QDs in living cells. To test the hypothesis that the TAT-QDs conjugated with antibody against intracellular target of interest can find the target, we conjugated anti-GFP antibody to TAT-PEG-pcQD using heterobifunctional linkers. Compared to the TAT-PEG-pcQD, which was distributed throughout the cytoplasm, the antiGFP-functionalized TAT-PEG-pcQD could penetrate the cell membrane

  16. Molecular signaling in live cells studied by FRET

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chien, Shu; Wang, Yingxiao

    2011-11-01

    Genetically encoded biosensors based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) enables visualization of signaling events in live cells with high spatiotemporal resolution. We have used FRET to assess temporal and spatial characteristics for signaling molecules, including tyrosine kinases Src and FAK, small GTPase Rac, calcium, and a membrane-bound matrix metalloproteinase MT1-MMP. Activations of Src and Rac by platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) led to distinct subcellular patterns during cell migration on micropatterned surface, and these two enzymes interact with each other to form a feedback loop with differential regulations at different subcellular locations. We have developed FRET biosensors to monitor FAK activities at rafts vs. non-raft regions of plasma membrane in live cells. In response to cell adhesion on matrix proteins or stimulation by PDGF, the raft-targeting FAK biosensor showed a stronger FRET response than that at non-rafts. The FAK activation at rafts induced by PDGF is mediated by Src. In contrast, the FAK activation at rafts induced by adhesion is independent of Src activity, but rather is essential for Src activation. Thus, Src is upstream to FAK in response to chemical stimulation (PDGF), but FAK is upstream to Src in response to mechanical stimulation (adhesion). A novel biosensor has been developed to dynamically visualize the activity of membrane type-1-matrix metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP), which proteolytically remodels the extracellular matrix. Epidermal growth factor (EGF) directed active MT1-MMP to the leading edge of migrating live cancer cells with local accumulation of EGF receptor via a process dependent on an intact cytoskeletal network. In summary, FRET-based biosensors enable the elucidation of molecular processes and hierarchies underlying spatiotemporal regulation of biological and pathological processes, thus advancing our knowledge on how cells perceive mechanical/chemical cues in space and time to coordinate

  17. Molecular signaling in live cells studied by FRET

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chien, Shu; Wang, Yingxiao

    2012-03-01

    Genetically encoded biosensors based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) enables visualization of signaling events in live cells with high spatiotemporal resolution. We have used FRET to assess temporal and spatial characteristics for signaling molecules, including tyrosine kinases Src and FAK, small GTPase Rac, calcium, and a membrane-bound matrix metalloproteinase MT1-MMP. Activations of Src and Rac by platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) led to distinct subcellular patterns during cell migration on micropatterned surface, and these two enzymes interact with each other to form a feedback loop with differential regulations at different subcellular locations. We have developed FRET biosensors to monitor FAK activities at rafts vs. non-raft regions of plasma membrane in live cells. In response to cell adhesion on matrix proteins or stimulation by PDGF, the raft-targeting FAK biosensor showed a stronger FRET response than that at non-rafts. The FAK activation at rafts induced by PDGF is mediated by Src. In contrast, the FAK activation at rafts induced by adhesion is independent of Src activity, but rather is essential for Src activation. Thus, Src is upstream to FAK in response to chemical stimulation (PDGF), but FAK is upstream to Src in response to mechanical stimulation (adhesion). A novel biosensor has been developed to dynamically visualize the activity of membrane type-1-matrix metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP), which proteolytically remodels the extracellular matrix. Epidermal growth factor (EGF) directed active MT1-MMP to the leading edge of migrating live cancer cells with local accumulation of EGF receptor via a process dependent on an intact cytoskeletal network. In summary, FRET-based biosensors enable the elucidation of molecular processes and hierarchies underlying spatiotemporal regulation of biological and pathological processes, thus advancing our knowledge on how cells perceive mechanical/chemical cues in space and time to coordinate

  18. Single-Molecule Studies of Integrins by AFM-Based Force Spectroscopy on Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eibl, Robert H.

    The characterization of cell adhesion between two living cells at the single-molecule level, i.e., between one adhesion receptor and its counter-receptor, appears to be an experimental challenge. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) can be used in its force spectroscopy mode to determine unbinding forces of a single pair of adhesion receptors, even with a living cell as a probe. This chapter provides an overview of AFM force measurements of the integrin family of cell adhesion receptors and their ligands. A focus is given to major integrins expressed on leukocytes, such as lymphocyte function-associated antigen 1 (LFA-1) and very late antigen 4 (VLA-4). These receptors are crucial for leukocyte trafficking in health and disease. LFA-1 and VLA-1 can be activated within the bloodstream from a low-affinity to a high-affinity receptor by chemokines in order to adhere strongly to the vessel wall before the receptor-bearing leukocytes extravasate. The experimental considerations needed to provide near-physiological conditions for a living cell and to be able to measure adequate forces at the single-molecule level are discussed in detail. AFM technology has been developed into a modern and extremely sensitive tool in biomedical research. It appears now that AFM force spectroscopy could enter, within a few years, medical applications in diagnosis and therapy of cancer and autoimmune diseases.

  19. Delivery of optical contrast agents using Triton-X100, part 1: reversible permeabilization of live cells for intracellular labeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van de Ven, Anne L.; Adler-Storthz, Karen; Richards-Kortum, Rebecca

    2009-03-01

    Effective delivery of optical contrast agents into live cells remains a significant challenge. We sought to determine whether Triton-X100, a detergent commonly used for membrane isolation and protein purification, could be used to effectively and reversibly permeabilize live cells for delivery of targeted optical contrast agents. Although Triton-X100 is widely recognized as a good cell permeabilization agent, no systematic study has evaluated the efficiency, reproducibility, and reversibility of Triton-X100-mediated permeabilization in live mammalian cells. We report a series of studies to characterize macromolecule delivery in cells following Triton-X100 treatment. Using this approach, we demonstrate that molecules ranging from 1 to 150 kDa in molecular weight can be reproducibly delivered into live cells by controlling the moles of Triton-X100 relative to the number of cells to be treated. When Triton-X100 is administered at or near the minimum effective concentration, cell permeabilization is generally reversed within 24 h, and treated cells continue to proliferate and show metabolic activity during the restoration of membrane integrity. We conclude that Triton-X100 is a promising permeabilization agent for efficient and reproducible delivery of optical contrast agents into live mammalian cells.

  20. The challenges of classical swine fever control: modified live and E2 subunit vaccines.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yu-Liang; Deng, Ming-Chung; Wang, Fun-In; Huang, Chin-Cheng; Chang, Chia-Yi

    2014-01-22

    Classical swine fever (CSF) is an economically important, highly contagious disease of swine worldwide. CSF is caused by classical swine fever virus (CSFV), and domestic pigs and wild boars are its only natural hosts. The two main strategies used to control CSF epidemic are systematic prophylactic vaccination and a non-vaccination stamping-out policy. This review compares the protective efficacy of the routinely used modified live vaccine (MLV) and E2 subunit vaccines and summarizes the factors that influence the efficacy of the vaccines and the challenges that both vaccines face to CSF control. Although MLV provide earlier and more complete protection than E2 subunit vaccines, it has the drawback of not allowing differentiation between infected and vaccinated animals (DIVA). The marker vaccine of E2 protein with companion discriminatory test to detect antibodies against E(rns) allows DIVA and is a promising strategy for future control and eradication of CSF. Maternal derived antibody (MDA) is the critical factor in impairing the efficacy of both MLV and E2 subunit vaccines, so the well-designed vaccination programs of sows and piglets should be considered together. Because of the antigen variation among various genotypes of CSFV, antibodies raised by either MLV or subunit vaccine neutralize genotypically homologous strains better than heterologous ones. However, although this is not a major concern for MLV as the induced immune responses can protect pigs against the challenge of various genotypes of CSFVs, it is critical for E2 subunit vaccines. It is thus necessary to evaluate whether the E2 subunit vaccine can completely protect against the current prevalent strains in the field. An ideal new generation of vaccine should be able to maintain the high protective efficiency of MLV and overcome the problem of antigenic variations while allowing for DIVA.

  1. Imaging individual neurons in the retinal ganglion cell layer of the living eye

    PubMed Central

    Rossi, Ethan A.; Granger, Charles E.; Yang, Qiang; Saito, Kenichi; Schwarz, Christina; Walters, Sarah; Nozato, Koji; Zhang, Jie; Kawakami, Tomoaki; Fischer, William; Latchney, Lisa R.; Hunter, Jennifer J.; Chung, Mina M.; Williams, David R.

    2017-01-01

    Although imaging of the living retina with adaptive optics scanning light ophthalmoscopy (AOSLO) provides microscopic access to individual cells, such as photoreceptors, retinal pigment epithelial cells, and blood cells in the retinal vasculature, other important cell classes, such as retinal ganglion cells, have proven much more challenging to image. The near transparency of inner retinal cells is advantageous for vision, as light must pass through them to reach the photoreceptors, but it has prevented them from being directly imaged in vivo. Here we show that the individual somas of neurons within the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) layer can be imaged with a modification of confocal AOSLO, in both monkeys and humans. Human images of RGC layer neurons did not match the quality of monkey images for several reasons, including safety concerns that limited the light levels permissible for human imaging. We also show that the same technique applied to the photoreceptor layer can resolve ambiguity about cone survival in age-related macular degeneration. The capability to noninvasively image RGC layer neurons in the living eye may one day allow for a better understanding of diseases, such as glaucoma, and accelerate the development of therapeutic strategies that aim to protect these cells. This method may also prove useful for imaging other structures, such as neurons in the brain. PMID:28049835

  2. The Croonian lecture 2006. Structure of the living cell.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Iain D

    2008-07-27

    The smallest viable unit of life is a single cell. To understand life, we need to visualize the structure of the cell as well as all cellular components and their complexes. This is a formidable task that requires sophisticated tools. These have developed from the rudimentary early microscopes of 350 years ago to a toolbox that includes electron microscopes, synchrotrons, high magnetic fields and vast computing power. This lecture briefly reviews the development of biophysical tools and illustrates how they begin to unravel the 'molecular logic of the living state'.

  3. Microrheology, Stress Fluctuations, and Active Behavior of Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lau, A. W.; Hoffman, B. D.; Davies, A.; Crocker, J. C.; Lubensky, T. C.

    2003-11-01

    We report the first measurements of the intrinsic strain fluctuations of living cells using a recently developed tracer correlation technique along with a theoretical framework for interpreting such data in heterogeneous media with nonthermal driving. The fluctuations' spatial and temporal correlations indicate that the cytoskeleton can be treated as a course-grained continuum with power-law rheology, driven by a spatially random stress tensor field. Combined with recent cell rheology results, our data imply that intracellular stress fluctuations have a nearly 1/ω2 power spectrum, as expected for a continuum with a slowly evolving internal prestress.

  4. Single-Molecule Imaging of RNA Splicing in Live Cells.

    PubMed

    Rino, José; Martin, Robert M; Carvalho, Célia; de Jesus, Ana C; Carmo-Fonseca, Maria

    2015-01-01

    Expression of genetic information in eukaryotes involves a series of interconnected processes that ultimately determine the quality and amount of proteins in the cell. Many individual steps in gene expression are kinetically coupled, but tools are lacking to determine how temporal relationships between chemical reactions contribute to the output of the final gene product. Here, we describe a strategy that permits direct measurements of intron dynamics in single pre-mRNA molecules in live cells. This approach reveals that splicing can occur much faster than previously proposed and opens new avenues for studying how kinetic mechanisms impact on RNA biogenesis.

  5. Imaging intracellular RNA distribution and dynamics in living cells.

    PubMed

    Tyagi, Sanjay

    2009-05-01

    Powerful methods now allow the imaging of specific mRNAs in living cells. These methods enlist fluorescent proteins to illuminate mRNAs, use labeled oligonucleotide probes and exploit aptamers that render organic dyes fluorescent. The intracellular dynamics of mRNA synthesis, transport and localization can be analyzed at higher temporal resolution with these methods than has been possible with traditional fixed-cell or biochemical approaches. These methods have also been adopted to visualize and track single mRNA molecules in real time. This review explores the promises and limitations of these methods.

  6. Quantitative FRET Analysis by Fast Acquisition Time Domain FLIM at High Spatial Resolution in Living Cells

    PubMed Central

    Padilla-Parra, Sergi; Audugé, Nicolas; Coppey-Moisan, Maïté; Tramier, Marc

    2008-01-01

    Quantitative analysis in Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) experiments in live cells for protein interaction studies is still a challenging issue. In a two-component system (FRET and no FRET donor species), fitting of fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) data gives the fraction of donor molecules involved in FRET (fD) and the intrinsic transfer efficiency. But when fast FLIM acquisitions are used to monitor dynamic changes in protein-protein interactions at high spatial and temporal resolutions in living cells, photon statistics and time resolution are limited. In this case, fitting procedures are not reliable, even for single lifetime donors. We introduce the new concept of a minimal fraction of donor molecules involved in FRET (mfD), coming from the mathematical minimization of fD. We find particular advantage in the use of mfD because it can be obtained without fitting procedures and it is derived directly from FLIM data. mfD constitutes an interesting quantitative parameter for live cell studies because it is related to the minimal relative concentration of interacting proteins. For multi-lifetime donors, the process of fitting complex fluorescence decays to find at least four reliable lifetimes is a near impossible task. Here, mfD extension for multi-lifetime donors is the only quantitative determinant. We applied this methodology for imaging the interaction between the bromodomains of TAFII250 and acetylated histones H4 in living cells at high resolution. We show the existence of discrete acetylated chromatin domains where the minimal fraction of bromodomain interacting with acetylated H4 oscillates from 0.26 to 0.36 and whose size is smaller than half of one micron cube. We demonstrate that mfD by itself is a useful tool to investigate quantitatively protein interactions in live cells, especially when using fast FRET-FLIM acquisition times. PMID:18539634

  7. Molecular Beacons: Powerful Tools for Imaging RNA in Living Cells

    PubMed Central

    Monroy-Contreras, Ricardo; Vaca, Luis

    2011-01-01

    Recent advances in RNA functional studies highlights the pivotal role of these molecules in cell physiology. Diverse methods have been implemented to measure the expression levels of various RNA species, using either purified RNA or fixed cells. Despite the fact that fixed cells offer the possibility to observe the spatial distribution of RNA, assays with capability to real-time monitoring RNA transport into living cells are needed to further understand the role of RNA dynamics in cellular functions. Molecular beacons (MBs) are stem-loop hairpin-structured oligonucleotides equipped with a fluorescence quencher at one end and a fluorescent dye (also called reporter or fluorophore) at the opposite end. This structure permits that MB in the absence of their target complementary sequence do not fluoresce. Upon binding to targets, MBs emit fluorescence, due to the spatial separation of the quencher and the reporter. Molecular beacons are promising probes for the development of RNA imaging techniques; nevertheless much work remains to be done in order to obtain a robust technology for imaging various RNA molecules together in real time and in living cells. The present work concentrates on the different requirements needed to use successfully MB for cellular studies, summarizing recent advances in this area. PMID:21876785

  8. F-pili dynamics by live-cell imaging.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Margaret; Maddera, Lucinda; Harris, Robin L; Silverman, Philip M

    2008-11-18

    Bacteria have evolved numerous mechanisms for cell-cell communication, many of which have important consequences for human health. Among these is conjugation, the direct transfer of DNA from one cell to another. For gram-negative bacteria, conjugation requires thin, flexible filaments (conjugative pili) that are elaborated by DNA donor cells. The structure, function, and especially the dynamics of conjugative pili are poorly understood. Here, we have applied live-cell imaging to characterize the dynamics of F-pili (conjugative pili encoded by the F plasmid of Escherichia coli). We establish that F-pili normally undergo cycles of extension and retraction in the absence of any obvious triggering event, such as contact with a recipient cell. When made, such contacts are able to survive the shear forces felt by bacteria in liquid media. Our data emphasize the role of F-pilus flexibility both in efficiently sampling a large volume surrounding donor cells in liquid culture and in establishing and maintaining cell-cell contact. Additionally and unexpectedly, we infer that extension and retraction are accompanied by rotation about the long axis of the filament.

  9. Real-time transposable element activity in individual live cells

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Gloria; Martini, K. Michael

    2016-01-01

    The excision and reintegration of transposable elements (TEs) restructure their host genomes, generating cellular diversity involved in evolution, development, and the etiology of human diseases. Our current knowledge of TE behavior primarily results from bulk techniques that generate time and cell ensemble averages, but cannot capture cell-to-cell variation or local environmental and temporal variability. We have developed an experimental system based on the bacterial TE IS608 that uses fluorescent reporters to directly observe single TE excision events in individual cells in real time. We find that TE activity depends upon the TE’s orientation in the genome and the amount of transposase protein in the cell. We also find that TE activity is highly variable throughout the lifetime of the cell. Upon entering stationary phase, TE activity increases in cells hereditarily predisposed to TE activity. These direct observations demonstrate that real-time live-cell imaging of evolution at the molecular and individual event level is a powerful tool for the exploration of genome plasticity in stressed cells. PMID:27298350

  10. Detecting Nanodomains in Living Cell Membrane by Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Hai-Tao; Marguet, Didier

    2011-05-01

    Cell membranes actively participate in numerous cellular functions. Inasmuch as bioactivities of cell membranes are known to depend crucially on their lateral organization, much effort has been focused on deciphering this organization on different length scales. Within this context, the concept of lipid rafts has been intensively discussed over recent years. In line with its ability to measure diffusion parameters with great precision, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) measurements have been made in association with innovative experimental strategies to monitor modes of molecular lateral diffusion within the plasma membrane of living cells. These investigations have allowed significant progress in the characterization of the cell membrane lateral organization at the suboptical level and have provided compelling evidence for the in vivo existence of raft nanodomains. We review these FCS-based studies and the characteristic structural features of raft nanodomains. We also discuss the findings in regards to the current view of lipid rafts as a general membrane-organizing principle.

  11. Distinct short-lived and long-lived antibody-producing cell populations.

    PubMed

    Ho, F; Lortan, J E; MacLennan, I C; Khan, M

    1986-10-01

    This report analyzes the life span of Ig-containing cells (IgCC) in different sites of antibody production. The experimental approach was based upon the observations that most IgCC are derived from proliferating precursors while IgCC themselves are mainly nondividing end cells. Rats were given a continuous infusion of [3H] thymidine via an osmotic pump inserted in the peritoneal cavity. At intervals of 1, 3, 5 or 10 days after starting infusions, tissues were taken and analyzed by a combination of immunohistology and autoradiography to identify the proportions of IgCC which had gone through S phase of the cell cycle during the period of infusion. After 3 days infusion the median and (range) percent-labeled IgCC in the medullary cords of mesenteric and cervical lymph nodes and the red pulp of the spleen were, respectively, 88 (81-90), 75 (66-77) and 88 (82-93). Conversely that for IgCC in bone marrow was only 13 (11-17) and that in the lamina propria of the jejunum 47 (33-68). The rate of increase in labeling of bone marrow IgCC with length of infusion was approximately linear. Extrapolation of this slope suggests that bone marrow IgCC have a life span in excess of 3 weeks. The slopes of increase in IgCC labeled with time for lymph nodes and spleen were clearly biphasic suggesting that while most IgCC in these tissues have a life span of less than 3 days, there is also a minor population of long-lived IgCC. The lamina propria appears to have approximately equal proportions of long and short-lived IgCC. The life span of IgCC, with the exception of IgMCC, appears to be a feature of the site of antibody production rather than the Ig class produced. Almost all IgM-containing cells were found to be short lived.

  12. The dynamic structure of the pericellular matrix on living cells

    PubMed Central

    1993-01-01

    Although up to several microns thick, the pericellular matrix is an elusive structure due to its invisibility with phase contrast or DIC microscopy. This matrix, which is readily visualized by the exclusion of large particles such as fixed red blood cells is important in embryonic development and in maintenance of cartilage. While it is known that the pericellular matrix which surrounds chondrocytes and a variety of other cells consists primarily of proteoglycans and hyaluronan with the latter binding to cell surface receptors, the macromolecular organization is still speculative. The macromolecular organization previously could not be determined because of the collapse of the cell coat with conventional fixation and dehydration techniques. Until now, there has been no way to study the dynamic arrangement of hyaluronan with its aggregated proteoglycans on living cells. In this study, the arrangement and mobility of hyaluronan-aggrecan complexes were directly observed in the pericellular matrix of living cells isolated from bovine articular cartilage. The complexes were labeled with 30- to 40-nm colloidal gold conjugated to 5-D-4, an antibody to keratan sulfate, and visualized with video-enhanced light microscopy. From our observations of the motion of pericellular matrix macromolecules, we report that the chondrocyte pericellular matrix is a dynamic structure consisting of individual tethered molecular complexes which project outward from the cell surface. These complexes undergo restricted rotation or wobbling. When the cells were cultured with ascorbic acid, which promotes production of matrix components, the size of the cell coat and the position of the gold probes relative to the plasma membrane were not changed. However, the rapidity and extent of the tethered motion were reduced. Treatment with Streptomyces hyaluronidase removed the molecules that displayed the tethered motion. Addition of hyaluronan and aggrecan to hyaluronidase-treated cells yielded the

  13. A hybrid microsystem for parallel perfusion experiments on living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greve, Frauke; Seemann, Livia; Hierlemann, Andreas; Lichtenberg, Jan

    2007-08-01

    A fully integrated microchip device for performing a complete and automated sample-perfusion experiment on living cells is presented. Cells were trapped and immobilized in a defined grid pattern inside a small 0.5 µl volume incubation chamber by pneumatic anchoring on 1000 5-µm orifices. This new cell trapping technique assures a precise and repeatable cell quantity for each experiment and enables the formation of a homogeneous cell population in the incubation chamber. The microsystem includes a perforated silicon chip seamlessly integrated by a new embedding technique in a larger elastomer substrate, which features the microfluidic network. The latter forms the incubation chamber and allows for economic logarithmic dilution of the sample reagent over a range of three orders of magnitude with subsequent perfusion of the cell population. First, the logarithmic dilution stage was validated using quantitative fluorescent imaging of fluorescein solution. Then, the cell adhesion and culturing inside the incubation chamber was studied using primary normal human dermal fibroblasts (NHDFs). The cells adhered well on laminin-coated surfaces and proliferated to form a confluent cell layer after 6 days in vitro. Finally, the complete system was tested by a perfusion experiment with cultured NHDFs, which were exposed to a fluorescent cell tracker at dilutions of 100 µm, 10 µm, 1 µm, 0.1 µm and 0 µm at a flow rate of 1.25 µl min-1 for 20 min. Fluorescence imaging of the cell array after incubation and image analysis showed a logarithmic relationship between sample concentration and the fluorescence signal. This paper describes the fabrication of the components and the assembly of the microsystem, the design approach and the validation of the sample diluter, cell-adhesion and cell-culturing experiments over several days.

  14. Simulations of Living Cell Origins Using a Cellular Automata Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishida, Takeshi

    2014-04-01

    Understanding the generalized mechanisms of cell self-assembly is fundamental for applications in various fields, such as mass producing molecular machines in nanotechnology. Thus, the details of real cellular reaction networks and the necessary conditions for self-organized cells must be elucidated. We constructed a 2-dimensional cellular automata model to investigate the emergence of biological cell formation, which incorporated a looped membrane and a membrane-bound information system (akin to a genetic code and gene expression system). In particular, with an artificial reaction system coupled with a thermal system, the simultaneous formation of a looped membrane and an inner reaction process resulted in a more stable structure. These double structures inspired the primitive biological cell formation process from chemical evolution stage. With a model to simulate cellular self-organization in a 2-dimensional cellular automata model, 3 phenomena could be realized: (1) an inner reaction system developed as an information carrier precursor (akin to DNA); (2) a cell border emerged (akin to a cell membrane); and (3) these cell structures could divide into 2. This double-structured cell was considered to be a primary biological cell. The outer loop evolved toward a lipid bilayer membrane, and inner polymeric particles evolved toward precursor information carriers (evolved toward DNA). This model did not completely clarify all the necessary and sufficient conditions for biological cell self-organization. Further, our virtual cells remained unstable and fragile. However, the "garbage bag model" of Dyson proposed that the first living cells were deficient; thus, it would be reasonable that the earliest cells were more unstable and fragile than the simplest current unicellular organisms.

  15. Simulations of living cell origins using a cellular automata model.

    PubMed

    Ishida, Takeshi

    2014-04-01

    Understanding the generalized mechanisms of cell self-assembly is fundamental for applications in various fields, such as mass producing molecular machines in nanotechnology. Thus, the details of real cellular reaction networks and the necessary conditions for self-organized cells must be elucidated. We constructed a 2-dimensional cellular automata model to investigate the emergence of biological cell formation, which incorporated a looped membrane and a membrane-bound information system (akin to a genetic code and gene expression system). In particular, with an artificial reaction system coupled with a thermal system, the simultaneous formation of a looped membrane and an inner reaction process resulted in a more stable structure. These double structures inspired the primitive biological cell formation process from chemical evolution stage. With a model to simulate cellular self-organization in a 2-dimensional cellular automata model, 3 phenomena could be realized: (1) an inner reaction system developed as an information carrier precursor (akin to DNA); (2) a cell border emerged (akin to a cell membrane); and (3) these cell structures could divide into 2. This double-structured cell was considered to be a primary biological cell. The outer loop evolved toward a lipid bilayer membrane, and inner polymeric particles evolved toward precursor information carriers (evolved toward DNA). This model did not completely clarify all the necessary and sufficient conditions for biological cell self-organization. Further, our virtual cells remained unstable and fragile. However, the "garbage bag model" of Dyson proposed that the first living cells were deficient; thus, it would be reasonable that the earliest cells were more unstable and fragile than the simplest current unicellular organisms.

  16. Diamagnetically trapped arrays of living cells above micromagnets.

    PubMed

    Kauffmann, Paul; Ith, Ammara; O'Brien, Daniel; Gaude, Victor; Boué, Florian; Combe, Stéphanie; Bruckert, Franz; Schaack, Béatrice; Dempsey, Nora M; Haguet, Vincent; Reyne, Gilbert

    2011-09-21

    Cell arrays are of foremost importance for many applications in pharmaceutical research or fundamental biology. Although arraying techniques have been widely investigated for adherent cells, organization of cells in suspension has been rarely considered. The arraying of non-adherent cells using the diamagnetic repulsive force is presented. A planar arrangement of Jurkat cells is achieved at the microscale above high quality microfabricated permanent magnets with remanent magnetization of J(r)≈ 1 T, in the presence of a paramagnetic contrast agent. The cytotoxicity of three Gd based contrast agents, Gd-DOTA, Gd-BOPTA and Gd-HP-DO3A, is studied. Among them, Gd-HP-DO3A appears to be the most biocompatible toward Jurkat cells. In close agreement with analytical simulations, diamagnetically 'suspended' cells have been successfully arrayed above square and honeycomb-like micromagnet arrays, which act as a "diamagnetophobic" surface. Living cell trapping is achieved in a simple manner using concentrations of Gd-HP-DO3A as low as 1.5 mM.

  17. Quantitative analysis of live cells using digital holographic microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, Tan Rongwei; Qu, Weijuan; Chee, Oi Choo; Singh, Vijay Raj; Asundi, Anand

    2010-03-01

    During the life time of a cell, it goes through changes to the plasma membrane as well as its internal structures especially distinctive during processes like cell division and death. Different types of microscope are used to fulfill the observation of the cell's variation. In our experiment, Vero cells have been investigated by using phase contrast microscopy and digital holographic microscopy (DHM). A comparison of the images obtained for cell division is presented here. The conventional phase contrast microscope provided a good imaging method in the real time analysis of cell division. The off-axis digital hologram recorded by the DHM system can be reconstructed to obtain both the intensity image and phase contrast image of the test object. These can be used for live cell imaging to provide multiple results from a single equipment setup. The DHM system, besides being a qualitative tool, is able to provide quantitative results and 3D images of the cell division process. The ability of DHM to provide quantitative analysis makes it an ideal tool for life science applications.

  18. Quantitative analysis of live cells using digital holographic microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, Tan Rongwei; Qu, Weijuan; Chee, Oi Choo; Singh, Vijay Raj; Asundi, Anand

    2009-12-01

    During the life time of a cell, it goes through changes to the plasma membrane as well as its internal structures especially distinctive during processes like cell division and death. Different types of microscope are used to fulfill the observation of the cell's variation. In our experiment, Vero cells have been investigated by using phase contrast microscopy and digital holographic microscopy (DHM). A comparison of the images obtained for cell division is presented here. The conventional phase contrast microscope provided a good imaging method in the real time analysis of cell division. The off-axis digital hologram recorded by the DHM system can be reconstructed to obtain both the intensity image and phase contrast image of the test object. These can be used for live cell imaging to provide multiple results from a single equipment setup. The DHM system, besides being a qualitative tool, is able to provide quantitative results and 3D images of the cell division process. The ability of DHM to provide quantitative analysis makes it an ideal tool for life science applications.

  19. Measurement of spatio-temporal transport in live cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ru; Wang, Zhuo; Millet, Larry; Gillette, Martha U.; Popescu, Gabriel

    2010-03-01

    The live cell is a highly dynamical system with complicated biophysical and biochemical processes taking place at diverse spatiotemporal scales. Though it is well known that microtubules and actin filaments play important roles in intracellular transport, their dynamic behavior is not entirely understood. We propose a unified approach to studying transport in live cells. We used Spatial Light Interference Microscopy, a quantitative phase imaging method developed in our laboratory, to extract cell mass distributions over broad spatiotemporal scales. The dispersion relations for this transport dynamics, i.e. frequency bandwidth vs. spatial frequencies, reveal deterministic mass transport at large spatial scales (w˜q) and diffusive transport at small spatial scales (w˜q̂2). At submicron scales, we observed a w˜q̂3 behavior, which indicates whip-like movements of protein filaments. Further control experiments where both the microtubule and actin polymerization were blocked suggests that essentially actin governs the long spatial scales behavior and microtubules the short scales. This label-free method enables us to access different components of cell dynamics and quantify diffusion coefficients and speed of motor proteins.

  20. Modeling a Living Cell as a Physical System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finkel, Robert

    2003-11-01

    The organization and synchrony of a living cell suggests that a cooperative process may enable the cell to act as a unit for some functions. This is an old and unproven idea, although some findings seem to be best interpreted as cooperative behavior. Here we propose a model based on cooperative behavior originating from metabolism-behavior not immediately evident from the component molecules or biochemical sequences. The model follows from treating energy cycles as quantum oscillators that give rise to associated chemical waves and quanta much as lattice vibrations in solids give rise to phonons. Model parameters are determined from established data for a specific bacterium. We find average wavelengths for the quanta of chemical oscillations are 115 nm at 310 K agreeing closely with the diameter of the smallest free-living cells. We analyze experimental results where yeast cells experienced resonant changes in growth at specific microwave frequencies. These frequencies are accurately reproduced with the model and other critical frequencies are predicted.

  1. Visualizing light-triggered release of molecules inside living cells.

    PubMed

    Huschka, Ryan; Neumann, Oara; Barhoumi, Aoune; Halas, Naomi J

    2010-10-13

    The light-triggered release of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) from gold nanoparticle-based, plasmon resonant vectors, such as nanoshells, shows great promise for gene delivery in living cells. Here we show that intracellular light-triggered release can be performed on molecules that associate with the DNA in a DNA host-guest complex bound to nanoshells. DAPI (4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole), a bright blue fluorescent molecule that binds reversibly to double-stranded DNA, was chosen to visualize this intracellular light-induced release process. Illumination of nanoshell-dsDNA-DAPI complexes at their plasmon resonance wavelength dehybridizes the DNA, releasing the DAPI molecules within living cells, where they diffuse to the nucleus and associate with the cell's endogenous DNA. The low laser power and irradiation times required for molecular release do not compromise cell viability. This highly controlled co-release of nonbiological molecules accompanying the oligonucleotides could have broad applications in the study of cellular processes and in the development of intracellular targeted therapies.

  2. Intravital live cell triggered imaging system reveals monocyte patrolling and macrophage migration in atherosclerotic arteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McArdle, Sara; Chodaczek, Grzegorz; Ray, Nilanjan; Ley, Klaus

    2015-02-01

    Intravital multiphoton imaging of arteries is technically challenging because the artery expands with every heartbeat, causing severe motion artifacts. To study leukocyte activity in atherosclerosis, we developed the intravital live cell triggered imaging system (ILTIS). This system implements cardiac triggered acquisition as well as frame selection and image registration algorithms to produce stable movies of myeloid cell movement in atherosclerotic arteries in live mice. To minimize tissue damage, no mechanical stabilization is used and the artery is allowed to expand freely. ILTIS performs multicolor high frame-rate two-dimensional imaging and full-thickness three-dimensional imaging of beating arteries in live mice. The external carotid artery and its branches (superior thyroid and ascending pharyngeal arteries) were developed as a surgically accessible and reliable model of atherosclerosis. We use ILTIS to demonstrate Cx3cr1GFP monocytes patrolling the lumen of atherosclerotic arteries. Additionally, we developed a new reporter mouse (Apoe-/-Cx3cr1GFP/+Cd11cYFP) to image GFP+ and GFP+YFP+ macrophages "dancing on the spot" and YFP+ macrophages migrating within intimal plaque. ILTIS will be helpful to answer pertinent open questions in the field, including monocyte recruitment and transmigration, macrophage and dendritic cell activity, and motion of other immune cells.

  3. Fluorescent probes for super-resolution imaging in living cells.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Suárez, Marta; Ting, Alice Y

    2008-12-01

    In 1873, Ernst Abbe discovered that features closer than approximately 200 nm cannot be resolved by lens-based light microscopy. In recent years, however, several new far-field super-resolution imaging techniques have broken this diffraction limit, producing, for example, video-rate movies of synaptic vesicles in living neurons with 62 nm spatial resolution. Current research is focused on further improving spatial resolution in an effort to reach the goal of video-rate imaging of live cells with molecular (1-5 nm) resolution. Here, we describe the contributions of fluorescent probes to far-field super-resolution imaging, focusing on fluorescent proteins and organic small-molecule fluorophores. We describe the features of existing super-resolution fluorophores and highlight areas of importance for future research and development.

  4. The lac repressor displays facilitated diffusion in living cells.

    PubMed

    Hammar, Petter; Leroy, Prune; Mahmutovic, Anel; Marklund, Erik G; Berg, Otto G; Elf, Johan

    2012-06-22

    Transcription factors (TFs) are proteins that regulate the expression of genes by binding sequence-specific sites on the chromosome. It has been proposed that to find these sites fast and accurately, TFs combine one-dimensional (1D) sliding on DNA with 3D diffusion in the cytoplasm. This facilitated diffusion mechanism has been demonstrated in vitro, but it has not been shown experimentally to be exploited in living cells. We have developed a single-molecule assay that allows us to investigate the sliding process in living bacteria. Here we show that the lac repressor slides 45 ± 10 base pairs on chromosomal DNA and that sliding can be obstructed by other DNA-bound proteins near the operator. Furthermore, the repressor frequently (>90%) slides over its natural lacO(1) operator several times before binding. This suggests a trade-off between rapid search on nonspecific sequences and fast binding at the specific sequence.

  5. Children's lived experiences of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

    PubMed

    Manookian, Arpi; Nasrabadi, Alireza Nikbakht; Asadi, Monireh

    2014-09-01

    Although hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is a valuable treatment in many life-threatening pediatric disorders, a large number of children who receive hematopoietic stem cell transplantation are faced with a variety of physical and psychological problems throughout this process. In this study, we explored the lived experiences of these children during their treatment to provide a better understanding of their main concerns, emotions, and expectations. The participants were six children, aged between 6 and 17 years, who underwent hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Data were collected through individual, in-depth, and semistructured interviews. Using interpretive phenomenological analysis, the findings revealed that the children experienced "transplantation rejoicing" in this "difficult passage", which was associated with "deepening of family ties". Awareness of these experiences, feelings, and concerns can help in the development of more professional interventions to provide children with holistic care during their hospitalization.

  6. Raman microscopy of individual living human embryonic stem cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novikov, S. M.; Beermann, J.; Bozhevolnyi, S. I.; Harkness, L. M.; Kassem, M.

    2010-04-01

    We demonstrate the possibility of mapping the distribution of different biomolecules in living human embryonic stem cells grown on glass substrates, without the need for fluorescent markers. In our work we improve the quality of measurements by finding a buffer that gives low fluorescence, growing cells on glass substrates (whose Raman signals are relatively weak compared to that of the cells) and having the backside covered with gold to improve the image contrast under direct white light illumination. The experimental setup used for Raman microscopy is the commercially available confocal scanning Raman microscope (Alpha300R) from Witec and sub-μm spatially resolved Raman images were obtained using a 532 nm excitation wavelength.

  7. Encapsulation system for the immunoisolation of living cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Taylor G. (Inventor); Lacik, Igor (Inventor); Brissova, Marcela (Inventor); Anikumar, Amrutur V. (Inventor); Prokop, Ales (Inventor); Powers, Alvin C. (Inventor)

    1999-01-01

    The present invention is drawn to a composition of matter comprising high viscosity sodium alginate, cellulose sulfate and a multi-component polycation. Additionally, the present invention provides methods for making capsules, measuring capsule permeability to immunologically-relevant proteins and treating disease in an animal using encapsulated cells. Over one thousand combinations of polyanions and polycations were examined as polymer candidates suitable for encapsulation of living cells and thirty-three pairs were effective. The combination of sodium alginate, cellulose sulfate, poly(methylene-co-guanidine) hydrochloride, calcium chloride, and sodium chloride produced the most desirable results. Pancreatic islets encapsulated in this multicomponent capsule demonstrated glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in vitro and reversed diabetes without stimulating immune reaction in mice. The capsule formulation and system of the present invention allows independent adjustments of capsule size, wall thickness, mechanical strength and permeability, and offers distinct advantages for immunoisolating cells.

  8. Extracellular dynamics at nm resolution in live cells.

    PubMed

    Jena, Bhanu P

    2008-01-01

    We are all voyagers in time and space, and throughout history of human civilization, our quest to understand Nature has fueled our imagination to make the necessary inventions that further our perception of Nature, perceptions beyond the natural limits of our senses. For example, the invention of various telescopes for observing distant objects, and microscopes for perceiving the very small, has enabled discoveries of distant galaxies and planets light years away, and of the micrometer-size unit of life-the "Cell," and of its nanometer-size subcellular organelles. The story of cell secretion, a fundamental process as old as life itself, occurs in all organisms-from the simple yeast to cells in humans. In the last 15 years, primarily using the atomic force microscope-a force spectroscope, a detailed understanding of the molecular machinery and mechanism of secretion in cells has come to light. This has led to a paradigm shift in our understanding of the underlying mechanism of cell secretion. The journey leading to the discovery of the "porosome," a nanometer-size structure at the cell plasma membrane-the universal secretory machinery, and its structure and dynamics in live cells, is briefly discussed in this chapter.

  9. Labeling proteins inside living cells using external fluorophores for microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Teng, Kai Wen; Ishitsuka, Yuji; Ren, Pin; Youn, Yeoan; Deng, Xiang; Ge, Pinghua; Lee, Sang Hak; Belmont, Andrew S; Selvin, Paul R

    2016-01-01

    Site-specific fluorescent labeling of proteins inside live mammalian cells has been achieved by employing Streptolysin O, a bacterial toxin which forms temporary pores in the membrane and allows delivery of virtually any fluorescent probes, ranging from labeled IgG’s to small ligands, with high efficiency (>85% of cells). The whole process, including recovery, takes 30 min, and the cell is ready to be imaged immediately. A variety of cell viability tests were performed after treatment with SLO to ensure that the cells have intact membranes, are able to divide, respond normally to signaling molecules, and maintains healthy organelle morphology. When combined with Oxyrase, a cell-friendly photostabilizer, a ~20x improvement in fluorescence photostability is achieved. By adding in glutathione, fluorophores are made to blink, enabling super-resolution fluorescence with 20–30 nm resolution over a long time (~30 min) under continuous illumination. Example applications in conventional and super-resolution imaging of native and transfected cells include p65 signal transduction activation, single molecule tracking of kinesin, and specific labeling of a series of nuclear and cytoplasmic protein complexes. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20378.001 PMID:27935478

  10. Crowding induces live cell extrusion to maintain homeostatic cell numbers in epithelia.

    PubMed

    Eisenhoffer, George T; Loftus, Patrick D; Yoshigi, Masaaki; Otsuna, Hideo; Chien, Chi-Bin; Morcos, Paul A; Rosenblatt, Jody

    2012-04-15

    For an epithelium to provide a protective barrier, it must maintain homeostatic cell numbers by matching the number of dividing cells with the number of dying cells. Although compensatory cell division can be triggered by dying cells, it is unknown how cell death might relieve overcrowding due to proliferation. When we trigger apoptosis in epithelia, dying cells are extruded to preserve a functional barrier. Extrusion occurs by cells destined to die signalling to surrounding epithelial cells to contract an actomyosin ring that squeezes the dying cell out. However, it is not clear what drives cell death during normal homeostasis. Here we show in human, canine and zebrafish cells that overcrowding due to proliferation and migration induces extrusion of live cells to control epithelial cell numbers. Extrusion of live cells occurs at sites where the highest crowding occurs in vivo and can be induced by experimentally overcrowding monolayers in vitro. Like apoptotic cell extrusion, live cell extrusion resulting from overcrowding also requires sphingosine 1-phosphate signalling and Rho-kinase-dependent myosin contraction, but is distinguished by signalling through stretch-activated channels. Moreover, disruption of a stretch-activated channel, Piezo1, in zebrafish prevents extrusion and leads to the formation of epithelial cell masses. Our findings reveal that during homeostatic turnover, growth and division of epithelial cells on a confined substratum cause overcrowding that leads to their extrusion and consequent death owing to the loss of survival factors. These results suggest that live cell extrusion could be a tumour-suppressive mechanism that prevents the accumulation of excess epithelial cells.

  11. Coupling of immunostimulants to live cells through metabolic glycoengineering and bioorthogonal click chemistry.

    PubMed

    Mongis, Aline; Piller, Friedrich; Piller, Véronique

    2017-03-15

    The present study investigated the potential of metabolic glycoengineering followed by bioorthogonal click chemistry for introducing into cell surface glycans different immunomodulating molecules. Mouse tumor models EG7 and MC38-OVA were treated with Ac4GalNAz and Ac4ManNAz followed by ligation of immunostimulants to modified cell surface glycans of the living cells through bioorthogonal click chemistry. The presence of covalently bound oligosaccharide and oligonucleotide immunostimulants could be clearly established. The activation of a reporter macrophage cell line was determined. Depending on the tumor cell line, covalently and non-covalently bound CpG activated the macrophages by between 67 and 100% over controls. EG7 cells with covalently attached immunostimulants and controls were injected subcutaneously into C57BL/6 mice. All tumor cells subjected to the complete treatment with control molecules formed tumors like non-treated cells confirming cell viability. However, when CpG oligonucleotide was linked to cell surface glycans, tumor growth was slowed significantly (60% reduction, n=10, by covalently bound CpG compared to, n=10, non-covalently bound CpG). When mice which had not developed large tumors were challenged with unmodified EG7 cells, no new tumors developed, suggesting protection through the immune system.

  12. Photovoice as a community-based participatory research method among women living with HIV/AIDS: ethical opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Teti, Michelle; Murray, Cynthia; Johnson, LaShaune; Binson, Diane

    2012-10-01

    Photovoice is a method in which participants use photography to identify, express, and disseminate their experiences. We conducted photovoice projects with women living with HIV/AIDS (N=21) to explore opportunities and challenges associated with the method. Photovoice provided a means to achieve two key principles of ethical public health practice: It gives participants opportunities to define their health priorities, and facilitates participant empowerment. Ethical challenges that were encountered related to exposing, through photographs, one's identity as living with HIV/AIDS, illicit activities, and other people. We discuss lessons learned for future practice to maximize the ethical opportunities and manage the challenges associated with using photovoice as an HIV-related CBPR strategy.

  13. Large-scale live imaging of adult neural stem cells in their endogenous niche.

    PubMed

    Dray, Nicolas; Bedu, Sébastien; Vuillemin, Nelly; Alunni, Alessandro; Coolen, Marion; Krecsmarik, Monika; Supatto, Willy; Beaurepaire, Emmanuel; Bally-Cuif, Laure

    2015-10-15

    Live imaging of adult neural stem cells (aNSCs) in vivo is a technical challenge in the vertebrate brain. Here, we achieve long-term imaging of the adult zebrafish telencephalic neurogenic niche and track a population of >1000 aNSCs over weeks, by taking advantage of fish transparency at near-infrared wavelengths and of intrinsic multiphoton landmarks. This methodology enables us to describe the frequency, distribution and modes of aNSCs divisions across the entire germinal zone of the adult pallium, and to highlight regional differences in these parameters.

  14. Experimental approaches for addressing fundamental biological questions in living, functioning cells with single molecule precision.

    PubMed

    Lenn, Tchern; Leake, Mark C

    2012-06-01

    In recent years, single molecule experimentation has allowed researchers to observe biological processes at the sensitivity level of single molecules in actual functioning, living cells, thereby allowing us to observe the molecular basis of the key mechanistic processes in question in a very direct way, rather than inferring these from ensemble average data gained from traditional molecular and biochemical techniques. In this short review, we demonstrate the impact that the application of single molecule bioscience experimentation has had on our understanding of various cellular systems and processes, and the potential that this approach has for the future to really address very challenging and fundamental questions in the life sciences.

  15. New approaches for understanding the nuclear force balance in living, adherent cells.

    PubMed

    Neelam, Srujana; Dickinson, Richard B; Lele, Tanmay P

    2016-02-01

    Cytoskeletal forces are transmitted to the nucleus to position and shape it. Linkages mediated by the LINC (linker of nucleoskeleton and cytoskeleton) complex transfer these forces to the nuclear envelope. Nuclear position and shape can be thought to be determined by a balance of cytoskeletal forces generated by microtubule motors that shear the nuclear surface, actomyosin forces that can pull, push and shear the nucleus, and intermediate filaments that may passively resist nuclear decentering and deformation. Parsing contributions of these different forces to nuclear mechanics is a very challenging task. Here we review new approaches that can be used in living cells to probe and understand the nuclear force balance.

  16. Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting of Live Versus Dead Bacterial Cells and Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bernardini, James N.; LaDuc, Myron T.; Diamond, Rochelle; Verceles, Josh

    2012-01-01

    This innovation is a coupled fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) and fluorescent staining technology for purifying (removing cells from sampling matrices), separating (based on size, density, morphology, and live versus dead), and concentrating cells (spores, prokaryotic, eukaryotic) from an environmental sample.

  17. Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Cell-Cell Signaling in a Living Cell Microarray

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirsaidov, Utkur; Timp, Winston; Timp, Kaethe; Matsudaira, Paul; Timp, Greg

    2007-03-01

    Cell-cell signaling plays a central role in biology, enabling individual cells to coordinate their activities. For example, bacteria show evidence of intercellular signaling through quorum sensing, a regulatory mechanism that launches a coordinated response, depending on the population density. To explore the spatio-temporal development of cell-to-cell signaling, we have created regular, heterotypic microarrays of living cells in hydrogel using time-multiplexed optical traps for submicron positional control of the cell orientation and location without loss of viability. We studied the Lux system for quorum sensing; splitting it into sender and receiver plasmids, which were subsequently introduced into E. Coli. Induced by IPTG, the sender cells express a fluorescent reporter (mRFP1) and the LuxI enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of a molecular signal AHL that diffuses through the cell membrane and the extra-cellular scaffold. The receiver cells collect the AHL signal that binds to the LuxR regulator and reports it through GFP production. We have measured the time-delay between the onset of mRFP1 and GFP dependence on intercellular spacing in the array.

  18. Local viscoelasticity of living cells measured by rotational magnetic spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Berret, J.-F.

    2016-01-01

    When submitted to a magnetic field, micron-size wires with superparamagnetic properties behave as embedded rheometers and represent interesting sensors for microrheology. Here we use rotational magnetic spectroscopy to measure the shear viscosity of the cytoplasm of living cells. We address the question of whether the cytoplasm is a viscoelastic liquid or an elastic gel. The main result of the study is the observation of a rotational instability between a synchronous and an asynchronous regime of rotation, found for murine fibroblasts and human cancer cells. For wires of susceptibility 3.6, the transition occurs in the range 0.01–1 rad s−1. The determination of the shear viscosity (10–100 Pa s) and elastic modulus (5–20 Pa) confirms the viscoelastic character of the cytoplasm. In contrast to earlier studies, it is concluded that the interior of living cells can be described as a viscoelastic liquid, and not as an elastic gel. PMID:26729062

  19. Single-Molecule Ion Channel Conformational Dynamics in Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, H. Peter

    2014-03-01

    Stochastic and inhomogeneous conformational changes regulate the function and dynamics of ion channels that are crucial for cell functions, neuronal signaling, and brain functions. Such complexity makes it difficult, if not impossible, to characterize ion channel dynamics using conventional electrical recording alone since that the measurement does not specifically interrogate the associated conformational changes but rather the consequences of the conformational changes. Recently, new technology developments on single-molecule spectroscopy, and especially, the combined approaches of using single ion channel patch-clamp electrical recording and single-molecule fluorescence imaging have provided us the capability of probing ion channel conformational changes simultaneously with the electrical single channel recording. By combining real-time single-molecule fluorescence imaging measurements with real-time single-channel electric current measurements in artificial lipid bilayers and in living cell membranes, we were able to probe single ion-channel-protein conformational changes simultaneously, and thus providing an understanding the dynamics and mechanism of ion-channel proteins at the molecular level. The function-regulating and site-specific conformational changes of ion channels are now measurable under physiological conditions in real-time, one molecule at a time. We will focus our discussion on the new development and results of real-time imaging of the dynamics of gramicidin, colicin, and NMDA receptor ion channels in lipid bilayers and living cells. Our results shed light on new perspectives of the intrinsic interplay of lipid membrane dynamics, solvation dynamics, and the ion channel functions.

  20. Small Molecule-Mediated Cleavage of RNA in Living Cells

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Lirui

    2013-01-01

    Antisense oligonucleotides and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) control gene expression by triggering the degradation of a mRNA via recruitment of RNase H or the RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC), respectively.[1] These approaches are hampered, however, by the poor cellular permeability of oligonucleotides. A small molecule approach to cleave RNA targets could obviate uptake issues. Several compounds can induce RNA cleavage in vitro,[2] however, to the best of our knowledge no small molecules have been previously described to cleave RNA in living cells. Herein, we describe the development of a potentially general approach to design small molecules that specifically cleave an RNA in a living cell, affecting biological function. Specifically, a designed, modularly assembled small molecule that binds the RNA that causes myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1)[3] was appended with a moiety that generates hydroxyl radicals upon irradiation. Cleavage of the transcript improves DM1-associated defects in cell culture, and compounds are non-toxic at an efficacious dose as determined by a MTT viability assay. This approach may allow for the site-specific cleavage and inactivation of other cellular RNAs.[4] Compounds that bind to and cleave RNA have the potential to serve as chemical genetics probes of function or lead therapeutics with spatial and temporal control. PMID:23280953

  1. Tracking single mRNA molecules in live cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon, Hyungseok C.; Lee, Byung Hun; Lim, Kiseong; Son, Jae Seok; Song, Minho S.; Park, Hye Yoon

    2016-06-01

    mRNAs inside cells interact with numerous RNA-binding proteins, microRNAs, and ribosomes that together compose a highly heterogeneous population of messenger ribonucleoprotein (mRNP) particles. Perhaps one of the best ways to investigate the complex regulation of mRNA is to observe individual molecules. Single molecule imaging allows the collection of quantitative and statistical data on subpopulations and transient states that are otherwise obscured by ensemble averaging. In addition, single particle tracking reveals the sequence of events that occur in the formation and remodeling of mRNPs in real time. Here, we review the current state-of-the-art techniques in tagging, delivery, and imaging to track single mRNAs in live cells. We also discuss how these techniques are applied to extract dynamic information on the transcription, transport, localization, and translation of mRNAs. These studies demonstrate how single molecule tracking is transforming the understanding of mRNA regulation in live cells.

  2. Long-tip high-speed atomic force microscopy for nanometer-scale imaging in live cells

    PubMed Central

    Shibata, Mikihiro; Uchihashi, Takayuki; Ando, Toshio; Yasuda, Ryohei

    2015-01-01

    Visualization of morphological dynamics of live cells with nanometer resolution under physiological conditions is highly desired, but challenging. It has been demonstrated that high-speed atomic force microscopy is a powerful technique for visualizing dynamics of biomolecules under physiological conditions. However, application of high-speed atomic force microscopy for imaging larger objects such as live mammalian cells has been complicated because of the collision between the cantilever and samples. Here, we demonstrate that attaching an extremely long (~3 μm) and thin (~5 nm) tip by amorphous carbon to the cantilever allows us to image the surface structure of live cells with the spatiotemporal resolution of nanometers and seconds. We demonstrate that long-tip high-speed atomic force microscopy is capable of imaging morphogenesis of filopodia, membrane ruffles, pit formation, and endocytosis in COS-7, HeLa cells and hippocampal neurons. PMID:25735540

  3. Long-tip high-speed atomic force microscopy for nanometer-scale imaging in live cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shibata, Mikihiro; Uchihashi, Takayuki; Ando, Toshio; Yasuda, Ryohei

    2015-03-01

    Visualization of morphological dynamics of live cells with nanometer resolution under physiological conditions is highly desired, but challenging. It has been demonstrated that high-speed atomic force microscopy is a powerful technique for visualizing dynamics of biomolecules under physiological conditions. However, application of high-speed atomic force microscopy for imaging larger objects such as live mammalian cells has been complicated because of the collision between the cantilever and samples. Here, we demonstrate that attaching an extremely long (~3 μm) and thin (~5 nm) tip by amorphous carbon to the cantilever allows us to image the surface structure of live cells with the spatiotemporal resolution of nanometers and seconds. We demonstrate that long-tip high-speed atomic force microscopy is capable of imaging morphogenesis of filopodia, membrane ruffles, pit formation, and endocytosis in COS-7, HeLa cells and hippocampal neurons.

  4. Securing a Better Living Environment for Left-Behind Children: Implications and Challenges for Policies

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Theodora; Ee, Miriam; Anh, Hoang Lan; Yeoh, Brenda S.A.

    2014-01-01

    Migration is an increasingly significant driver of transformations in family configurations and caregiving practices as well as living arrangements. The sustainability of geographically-split family formations is dependent on several factors, including the presence and strength of care support networks among migrants and their left-behind families, access to communication infrastructure and the stability of the families’ financial resources. Drawing on both a selective review of relevant academic literature as well as key findings from the CHAMPSEA Project, the article first examines the effects of these three factors on the well-being of migrants’ left-behind family members, especially children. The article also considers major implications of the project’s findings, as well as possible challenges for migration and development policies. One area of concern for migration and development policy arising from our research findings is the need to provide better support for left-behind caregivers or carers who are substituting for the absent migrant in childcare and domestic work but who may also need care and support themselves. Another area relates to the need to improve communication infrastructure to help migrants and their families maintain their relationships across transnational spaces; while a third lies with the importance of minimizing migrant families’ economic stress stemming from the cycle of debts resulting from exorbitant broker fees and the mismanagement of remittances. By acknowledging both the social and economic costs of international labor migration on families, governments of labor-sending countries can create a more effective legal and institutional framework as well as design suitable supporting mechanisms for left-behind families. There is then a stronger possibility that migration can become a sustainable development strategy for transnational families in South-East Asia. PMID:24954965

  5. Isoniazid preventive therapy for people living with HIV: public health challenges and implementation issues.

    PubMed

    Aït-Khaled, N; Alarcon, E; Bissell, K; Boillot, F; Caminero, J A; Chiang, C-Y; Clevenbergh, P; Dlodlo, R; Enarson, D A; Enarson, P; Ferroussier, O; Fujiwara, P I; Harries, A D; Heldal, E; Hinderaker, S G; Kim, S J; Lienhardt, C; Rieder, H L; Rusen, I D; Trébucq, A; Van Deun, A; Wilson, N

    2009-08-01

    Isoniazid preventive therapy (IPT) is recognised as an important component of collaborative tuberculosis (TB) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) activities to reduce the burden of TB in people living with HIV (PLHIV). However, there has been little in the way of IPT implementation at country level. This failure has resulted in a recent call to arms under the banner title of the 'Three I's' (infection control to prevent nosocomial transmission of TB in health care settings, intensified TB case finding and IPT). In this paper, we review the background of IPT. We then discuss the important challenges of IPT in PLHIV, namely responsibility and accountability for the implementation, identification of latent TB infection, exclusion of active TB and prevention of isoniazid resistance, length of treatment and duration of protective efficacy. We also highlight several research questions that currently remain unanswered. We finally offer practical suggestions about how to scale up IPT in the field, including the need to integrate IPT into a package of care for PLHIV, the setting up of operational projects with the philosophy of 'learning while doing', the development of flow charts for eligibility for IPT, the development and implementation of care prior to antiretroviral treatment, and finally issues around procurement, distribution, monitoring and evaluation. We support the implementation of IPT, but only if it is done in a safe and structured way. There is a definite risk that 'sloppy' IPT will be inefficient and, worse, could lead to the development of multidrug-resistant TB, and this must be avoided at all costs.

  6. Securing a Better Living Environment for Left-Behind Children: Implications and Challenges for Policies.

    PubMed

    Lam, Theodora; Ee, Miriam; Anh, Hoang Lan; Yeoh, Brenda S A

    2013-12-01

    Migration is an increasingly significant driver of transformations in family configurations and caregiving practices as well as living arrangements. The sustainability of geographically-split family formations is dependent on several factors, including the presence and strength of care support networks among migrants and their left-behind families, access to communication infrastructure and the stability of the families' financial resources. Drawing on both a selective review of relevant academic literature as well as key findings from the CHAMPSEA Project, the article first examines the effects of these three factors on the well-being of migrants' left-behind family members, especially children. The article also considers major implications of the project's findings, as well as possible challenges for migration and development policies. One area of concern for migration and development policy arising from our research findings is the need to provide better support for left-behind caregivers or carers who are substituting for the absent migrant in childcare and domestic work but who may also need care and support themselves. Another area relates to the need to improve communication infrastructure to help migrants and their families maintain their relationships across transnational spaces; while a third lies with the importance of minimizing migrant families' economic stress stemming from the cycle of debts resulting from exorbitant broker fees and the mismanagement of remittances. By acknowledging both the social and economic costs of international labor migration on families, governments of labor-sending countries can create a more effective legal and institutional framework as well as design suitable supporting mechanisms for left-behind families. There is then a stronger possibility that migration can become a sustainable development strategy for transnational families in South-East Asia.

  7. Application of living microbial cells entrapped with synthetic resin prepolymers.

    PubMed

    Fukui, S; Tanaka, A

    1989-12-01

    Living and growing microbial cells were immobilized by entrapping in synthetic resin gels prepared from their prepolymers, and used in the production of various useful substances. The production of the desired metabolites and also both the activity and the stability of the catalytic systems were seriously affected by the physico-chemical properties of the prepolymers, and those of the resin gels subsequently formed, such as gel network, hydrophilicity-hydrophobicity balance and ionic nature, as well as by the type of bioreactors. Hydroxylation of steroids and production of antibiotics, polypeptides and other biologically active substances, and the effects of gel properties on them are discussed as examples.

  8. Electron Microscopy of Living Cells During in Situ Fluorescence Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Liv, Nalan; van Oosten Slingeland, Daan S. B.; Baudoin, Jean-Pierre; Kruit, Pieter; Piston, David W.; Hoogenboom, Jacob P.

    2016-01-01

    We present an approach toward dynamic nanoimaging: live fluorescence of cells encapsulated in a bionanoreactor is complemented with in situ scanning electron microscopy (SEM) on an integrated microscope. This allows us to take SEM snapshots on-demand, that is, at a specific location in time, at a desired region of interest, guided by the dynamic fluorescence imaging. We show that this approach enables direct visualization, with EM resolution, of the distribution of bioconjugated quantum dots on cellular extensions during uptake and internalization. PMID:26580231

  9. Interaction of multi-functional silver nanoparticles with living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sur, Ilknur; Cam, Dilek; Kahraman, Mehmet; Baysal, Asli; Culha, Mustafa

    2010-04-01

    Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are widely used in household products and in medicine due to their antibacterial and to wound healing properties. In recent years, there is also an effort for their use in biomedical imaging and photothermal therapy. The primary reason behind the effort for their utility in biomedicine and therapy is their unique plasmonic properties and easy surface chemistry for a variety of functionalizations. In this study, AgNPs modified with glucose, lactose, oligonucleotides and combinations of these ligands are investigated for their cytotoxicity and cellular uptake in living non-cancer (L929) and cancer (A549) cells. It is found that the chemical nature of the ligand strongly influences the toxicity and cellular uptake into the model cells. While the lactose-and glucose-modified AgNPs enter the L929 cells at about the same rate, a significant increase in the rate of lactose-modified AgNPs into the A549 cells is observed. The binding of oligonucleotides along with the carbohydrate on the AgNP surfaces influences the differential uptake rate pattern into the cells. The cytotoxicity study with the modified AgNPs reveals that only naked AgNPs influence the viability of the A549 cells. The findings of this study may provide the key to developing effective applications in medicine such as cancer therapy.

  10. Antibody mediated transduction of therapeutic proteins into living cells.

    PubMed

    Hansen, James E; Weisbart, Richard H; Nishimura, Robert N

    2005-09-16

    Protein therapy refers to the direct delivery of therapeutic proteins to cells and tissues with the goal of ameliorating or modifying a disease process. Current techniques for delivering proteins across cell membranes include taking advantage of receptor-mediated endocytosis or using protein transduction domains that penetrate directly into cells. The most commonly used protein transduction domains are small cell-penetrating peptides derived from such proteins as the HIV-1 Tat protein. A novel protein transduction domain developed as the single chain fragment (Fv) of a murine anti-DNA autoantibody, mAb 3E10, has recently been developed and used to deliver biologically active proteins to living cells in vitro. This review will provide a brief overview of the development of the Fv fragment and provide a summary of recent studies using Fv to deliver therapeutic peptides and proteins (such as a C-terminal p53 peptide, C-terminal p53 antibody fragment, full-length p53, and micro-dystrophin) to cells.

  11. Prospects and challenges of quantitative phase imaging in tumor cell biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kemper, Björn; Götte, Martin; Greve, Burkhard; Ketelhut, Steffi

    2016-03-01

    Quantitative phase imaging (QPI) techniques provide high resolution label-free quantitative live cell imaging. Here, prospects and challenges of QPI in tumor cell biology are presented, using the example of digital holographic microscopy (DHM). It is shown that the evaluation of quantitative DHM phase images allows the retrieval of different parameter sets for quantification of cellular motion changes in migration and motility assays that are caused by genetic modifications. Furthermore, we demonstrate simultaneously label-free imaging of cell growth and morphology properties.

  12. Single Molecule Imaging of Transcription Factor Binding to DNA in Live Mammalian Cells

    PubMed Central

    Gebhardt, J Christof M; Suter, David M; Roy, Rahul; Zhao, Ziqing W; Chapman, Alec R; Basu, Srinjan; Maniatis, Tom; Xie, X Sunney

    2013-01-01

    Imaging single fluorescent proteins in living mammalian cells is challenging due to out-of-focus fluorescence excitation by common microscopy schemes. We report the development of a novel fluorescence microscopy method, reflected light sheet microscopy (RLSM), which allows selective plane illumination throughout the nucleus of living mammalian cells, for reducing out-of-focus fluorescence signal. Generation of a thin light sheet parallel to the imaging plane and close to the sample surface is achieved by reflecting an elliptical laser beam incident from the top by 45° with a small mirror. The thin light sheet allows for an increased signal-to-background ratio superior to previous illumination schemes and enables imaging of single fluorescent proteins with up to 100 Hz time resolution. We demonstrate the sensitivity of RLSM by measuring the DNA-bound fraction of glucocorticoid receptor (GR) and determine the residence times on DNA of various oligomerization states and mutants of GR and estrogen receptor (ER), enabling us to resolve different modes of DNA binding of GR. Finally, we demonstrate two-color single molecule imaging by observing the spatio-temporal co-localization of two different protein pairs. The combination of our single molecule measurements and statistical analysis reveals dynamic properties of transcription factors in live mammalian cells. PMID:23524394

  13. Challenges in imaging cell surface receptor clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medda, Rebecca; Giske, Arnold; Cavalcanti-Adam, Elisabetta Ada

    2016-01-01

    Super-resolution microscopy offers unique tools for visualizing and resolving cellular structures at the molecular level. STED microscopy is a purely optical method where neither complex sample preparation nor mathematical post-processing is required. Here we present the use of STED microscopy for imaging receptor cluster composition. We use two-color STED to further determine the distribution of two different receptor subunits of the family of receptor serine/threonine kinases in the presence or absence of their ligands. The implications of receptor clustering on the downstream signaling are discussed, and future challenges are also presented.

  14. Deconvolved spatial light interference microscopy for live cell imaging.

    PubMed

    Haldar, Justin P; Wang, Zhuo; Popescu, Gabriel; Liang, Zhi-Pei

    2011-09-01

    Spatial light interference microscopy (SLIM) is a recently developed method for the label-free imaging of live cells, using the quantitative optical path length through the sample as an endogenous source of contrast. In conventional SLIM, spatial resolution is limited by diffraction and aberrations. This paper describes a novel constrained deconvolution method for improving resolution in SLIM. Constrained deconvolution is enabled by experimental measurement of the system point-spread function and the modeling of coherent image formation in SLIM. Results using simulated and experimental data demonstrate that the proposed method leads to significant improvements in the resolution and contrast of SLIM images. The proposed method should prove useful for high-resolution label-free studies of biological cells and subcellular processes.

  15. Amyloplast sedimentation and organelle saltation in living corn columella cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sack, F. D.; Suyemoto, M. M.; Leopold, A. C.

    1986-01-01

    Amyloplast sedimentation during gravistimulation and organelle movements was studied in living central rootcap cells of Zea mays L. cv. Merit. Cells from sectioned roots were viewed with a horizontally-mounted videomicroscope. The kinetics of gravity-induced amyloplast sedimentation were comparable to those calculated from experiments using fixed material. Individual amyloplasts fell at an average velocity of 5.5 micrometers min-1; the maximal velocity of fall measured was 18.0 micrometers min-1. Amyloplasts often rotated, sometimes rose in the cytoplasm, and occasionally underwent sudden rapid movements as fast as 58 micrometers min-1. Saltations of other organelles were frequently observed. This appears to be the first report of cytoplasmic streaming in the presumptive statocytes of roots.

  16. Penetration of living cell membranes with fortified carbon nanotube tips.

    PubMed

    Vakarelski, Ivan U; Brown, Scott C; Higashitani, Ko; Moudgil, Brij M

    2007-10-23

    We have fabricated robust nanosurgical needles suitable for single cell operations by modifying multiwalled carbon nanotube (MCNT)-terminated atomic force microscopy (AFM) tips. Extra-long MCNT AFM tips were prepared and fortified with molecular layers of carbon to overcome mechanical instabilities and then coated with an outer shell of gold to promote chemical versatility. The terminal diameters of the final fabricated tips were approximately 30-40 nm, and the MCNT probes were several micrometers in length. We illustrate the capability of these modified MCNT tips to carry nanoparticulate payloads and to penetrate the plasma membrane of living pleural mesothelial cells at the smallest indentation depths (100-200 nm) and lowest penetration forces (100-200 pN) currently reported for these procedures.

  17. Synthetic circuits integrating logic and memory in living cells.

    PubMed

    Siuti, Piro; Yazbek, John; Lu, Timothy K

    2013-05-01

    Logic and memory are essential functions of circuits that generate complex, state-dependent responses. Here we describe a strategy for efficiently assembling synthetic genetic circuits that use recombinases to implement Boolean logic functions with stable DNA-encoded memory of events. Application of this strategy allowed us to create all 16 two-input Boolean logic functions in living Escherichia coli cells without requiring cascades comprising multiple logic gates. We demonstrate long-term maintenance of memory for at least 90 cell generations and the ability to interrogate the states of these synthetic devices with fluorescent reporters and PCR. Using this approach we created two-bit digital-to-analog converters, which should be useful in biotechnology applications for encoding multiple stable gene expression outputs using transient inputs of inducers. We envision that this integrated logic and memory system will enable the implementation of complex cellular state machines, behaviors and pathways for therapeutic, diagnostic and basic science applications.

  18. Nanoparticle PEBBLE sensors in live cells and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yong-Eun Koo; Smith, Ron; Kopelman, Raoul

    2009-01-01

    Nanoparticle sensors have been developed for real-time imaging and dynamic monitoring, both in live cells and in vivo, of molecular and ionic components, constructs, forces, and dynamics observed during biological, chemical, and physical processes. With their biocompatible small size and inert matrix, nanoparticle sensors have been successfully applied to noninvasive real-time measurements of analytes and fields in cells and in rodents, with spatial, temporal, physical, and chemical resolution. This review describes the diverse designs of nanoparticle sensors for ions and small molecules, physical fields, and biological features, as well as the characterization, properties, and applications of these nanosensors to in vitro and in vivo measurements. Their floating as well as localization abilities in biological media are captured by the acronym PEBBLE: photonic explorer for bioanalysis with biologically localized embedding.

  19. A genetically encoded toolkit for tracking live-cell histidine dynamics in space and time

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Hanyang; Gu, Yanfang; Xu, Lei; Zou, Yejun; Wang, Aoxue; Tao, Rongkun; Chen, Xianjun; Zhao, Yuzheng; Yang, Yi

    2017-01-01

    High-resolution spatiotemporal imaging of histidine in single living mammalian cells faces technical challenges. Here, we developed a series of ratiometric, highly responsive, and single fluorescent protein-based histidine sensors of wide dynamic range. We used these sensors to quantify subcellular free-histidine concentrations in glucose-deprived cells and glucose-fed cells. Results showed that cytosolic free-histidine concentration was higher and more sensitive to the environment than free histidine in the mitochondria. Moreover, histidine was readily transported across the plasma membrane and mitochondrial inner membrane, which had almost similar transport rates and transport constants, and histidine transport was not influenced by cellular metabolic state. These sensors are potential tools for tracking histidine dynamics inside subcellular organelles, and they will open an avenue to explore complex histidine signaling. PMID:28252043

  20. Live-Cell Labeling of Specific Protein Glycoforms by Proximity-Enhanced Bioorthogonal Ligation

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Peter V.; de Almeida-Escobedo, Gabriela; de Groot, Amber E.; McKechnie, Julia L.

    2016-01-01

    Reagents for detecting post-translational modifications in the context of their protein scaffold are powerful tools, but are challenging to develop for glycosylated epitopes. We describe a strategy for detecting protein-specific glycosylation through the use of cyclooctyne-aptamer conjugates. These molecules selectively ligate to azidosugar-labeled glycans exclusively on a target protein on live cells. We characterized aptamer conjugates against two different cell surface glycoproteins and show that these reagents are amenable to detecting protein sialoforms by mass spectrometry, Western blotting, and flow cytometry. Given the abundance of aptamers that bind cell surface targets, we expect this technology will be a useful platform for investigating the roles of protein-specific glycosylation in various cellular contexts. PMID:26280358

  1. Measuring calcium dynamics in living cells with genetically encodable calcium indicators.

    PubMed

    McCombs, Janet E; Palmer, Amy E

    2008-11-01

    Genetically encoded calcium indicators (GECIs) allow researchers to measure calcium dynamics in specific targeted locations within living cells. Such indicators enable dissection of the spatial and temporal control of calcium signaling processes. Here we review recent progress in the development of GECIs, highlighting which indicators are most appropriate for measuring calcium in specific organelles and localized domains in mammalian tissue culture cells. An overview of recent approaches that have been undertaken to ensure that the GECIs are minimally perturbed by the cellular environment is provided. Additionally, the procedures for introducing GECIs into mammalian cells, conducting calcium imaging experiments, and analyzing data are discussed. Because organelle-targeted indicators often pose an additional challenge, we underscore strategies for calibrating GECIs in these locations.

  2. Stoichiometry of Nck-dependent actin polymerization in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Ditlev, Jonathon A.; Michalski, Paul J.; Huber, Greg; Rivera, Gonzalo M.; Mohler, William A.

    2012-01-01

    Regulation of actin dynamics through the Nck/N-WASp (neural Wiskott–Aldrich syndrome protein)/Arp2/3 pathway is essential for organogenesis, cell invasiveness, and pathogen infection. Although many of the proteins involved in this pathway are known, the detailed mechanism by which it functions remains undetermined. To examine the signaling mechanism, we used a two-pronged strategy involving computational modeling and quantitative experimentation. We developed predictions for Nck-dependent actin polymerization using the Virtual Cell software system. In addition, we used antibody-induced aggregation of membrane-targeted Nck SH3 domains to test these predictions and to determine how the number of molecules in Nck aggregates and the density of aggregates affected localized actin polymerization in living cells. Our results indicate that the density of Nck molecules in aggregates is a critical determinant of actin polymerization. Furthermore, results from both computational simulations and experimentation support a model in which the Nck/N-WASp/Arp2/3 stoichiometry is 4:2:1. These results provide new insight into activities involving localized actin polymerization, including tumor cell invasion, microbial pathogenesis, and T cell activation. PMID:22613834

  3. Single-molecule imaging in live cell using gold nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Leduc, Cécile; Si, Satyabrata; Gautier, Jérémie J; Gao, Zhenghong; Shibu, Edakkattuparambil S; Gautreau, Alexis; Giannone, Grégory; Cognet, Laurent; Lounis, Brahim

    2015-01-01

    Optimal single particle tracking experiments in live cells requires small and photostable probes, which do not modify the behavior of the molecule of interest. Current fluorescence-based microscopy of single molecules and nanoparticles is often limited by bleaching and blinking or by the probe size. As an alternative, we present in this chapter the synthesis of a small and highly specific gold nanoprobe whose detection is based on its absorption properties. We first present a protocol to synthesize 5-nm-diameter gold nanoparticles and functionalize them with a nanobody, a single-domain antibody from camelid, targeting the widespread green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged proteins with a high affinity. Then we describe how to detect and track these individual gold nanoparticles in live cell using photothermal imaging microscopy. The combination of a probe with small size, perfect photostability, high specificity, and versatility through the vast existing library of GFP-proteins, with a highly sensitive detection technique enables long-term tracking of proteins with minimal hindrance in confined and crowded environments such as intracellular space.

  4. Relative microelastic mapping of living cells by atomic force microscopy.

    PubMed Central

    A-Hassan, E; Heinz, W F; Antonik, M D; D'Costa, N P; Nageswaran, S; Schoenenberger, C A; Hoh, J H

    1998-01-01

    The spatial and temporal changes of the mechanical properties of living cells reflect complex underlying physiological processes. Following these changes should provide valuable insight into the biological importance of cellular mechanics and their regulation. The tip of an atomic force microscope (AFM) can be used to indent soft samples, and the force versus indentation measurement provides information about the local viscoelasticity. By collecting force-distance curves on a time scale where viscous contributions are small, the forces measured are dominated by the elastic properties of the sample. We have developed an experimental approach, using atomic force microscopy, called force integration to equal limits (FIEL) mapping, to produce robust, internally quantitative maps of relative elasticity. FIEL mapping has the advantage of essentially being independent of the tip-sample contact point and the cantilever spring constant. FIEL maps of living Madine-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells show that elasticity is uncoupled from topography and reveal a number of unexpected features. These results present a mode of high-resolution visualization in which the contrast is based on the mechanical properties of the sample. PMID:9512052

  5. Carotenoid Distribution in Living Cells of Haematococcus pluvialis (Chlorophyceae)

    SciTech Connect

    Collins, Aaron M.; Jones, Howland D. T.; Han, Danxiang; Hu, Qiang; Beechem, Thomas E.; Timlin, Jerilyn A.; Evens, Terence

    2011-09-06

    Haematococcus pluvialis is a freshwater unicellular green microalga belonging to the class Chlorophyceae and is of commercial interest for its ability to accumulate massive amounts of the red ketocarotenoid astaxanthin (3,3'-dihydroxy-β,β-carotene-4,4'-dione). Using confocal Raman microscopy and multivariate analysis, we demonstrate the ability to spectrally resolve resonance–enhanced Raman signatures associated with astaxanthin and β-carotene along with chlorophyll fluorescence. By mathematically isolating these spectral signatures, in turn, it is possible to locate these species independent of each other in living cells of H. pluvialis in various stages of the life cycle. Chlorophyll emission was found only in the chloroplast whereas astaxanthin was identified within globular and punctate regions of the cytoplasmic space. Moreover, we found evidence for β-carotene to be co-located with both the chloroplast and astaxanthin in the cytosol. These observations imply that β-carotene is a precursor for astaxanthin and the synthesis of astaxanthin occurs outside the chloroplast. Finally, our work demonstrates the broad utility of confocal Raman microscopy to resolve spectral signatures of highly similar chromophores in living cells.

  6. Microspectrofluorometric analysis of drug phototoxicity in single living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morliere, Patrice; Santus, Rene C.; Maziere, J. C.; Geze, Marc; Bazin, M.; Kohen, Elli

    1993-03-01

    The study of primary photobiological processes on the basis of structure-activity relationship is important for a better understanding of drug phototoxicity. An ideal approach for the understanding of the phototoxic response is provided by the study of drugs purposely used in photochemotherapeuties for which the determination of primary photochemical targets is a prerequisite for the investigation of the phototherapeutic action. For instance, in the so-called 'photodynamic therapy' of cancers, the photodynamic properties of porphyrins more or less specifically localized in tumors are responsible for their photocytotoxicity. Microfluorometry and particularly microspectrofluorometry are powerful non invasive techniques for carrying out quantitative photobiological investigations in real time in single living cells. This approach allows one to monitor the drug localization, to follow the drug fate, and to study photosensitized events in living cells. We illustrate some aspects of such investigations with photofrin II, a mixture of porphyrins currently used in phase III clinical trials, and other porphyrins including protoporphyrin which is encountered in genetic and drug-induced cutaneous porphyrias. To demonstrate the usefulness of microspectrofluorometry in such studies, we present data on the photosensitizer localization, on the photosensitizer photobleaching, and on structural or functional photosensitized damage to organelles.

  7. Live-cell Imaging Approaches for the Investigation of ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    BACKGROUND: Oxidant stress is arguably a universal feature in toxicology. Research studies on the role of oxidant stress induced by xenobiotic exposures have typically relied on the identification of damaged biomolecules using a variety of conventional biochemical and molecular techniques. However, there is increasing evidence that low-level exposure to a variety of toxicants dysregulates cellular physiology by interfering with redox-dependent processes.SCOPE OF REVIEW: The study of events involved in redox toxicology requires methodology capable of detecting transient modifications at relatively low signal strength. This article reviews the advantages of live-cell imaging for redox toxicology studies.MAJOR CONCLUSIONS: Toxicological studies with xenobiotics of supra-physiological reactivity require careful consideration when using fluorogenic sensors in order to avoid potential artifacts and false negatives. Fortunately, experiments conducted for the purpose of validating the use of these sensors in toxicological applications often yield unexpected insights into the mechanisms through which xenobiotic exposure induces oxidant stress.GENERAL SIGNIFICANCE: Live-cell imaging using a new generation of small molecule and genetically encoded fluorophores with excellent sensitivity and specificity affords unprecedented spatiotemporal resolution that is optimal for redox toxicology studies. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Air Pollution, edited by Wenju

  8. Labeling proteins on live mammalian cells using click chemistry.

    PubMed

    Nikić, Ivana; Kang, Jun Hee; Girona, Gemma Estrada; Aramburu, Iker Valle; Lemke, Edward A

    2015-05-01

    We describe a protocol for the rapid labeling of cell-surface proteins in living mammalian cells using click chemistry. The labeling method is based on strain-promoted alkyne-azide cycloaddition (SPAAC) and strain-promoted inverse-electron-demand Diels-Alder cycloaddition (SPIEDAC) reactions, in which noncanonical amino acids (ncAAs) bearing ring-strained alkynes or alkenes react, respectively, with dyes containing azide or tetrazine groups. To introduce ncAAs site specifically into a protein of interest (POI), we use genetic code expansion technology. The protocol can be described as comprising two steps. In the first step, an Amber stop codon is introduced--by site-directed mutagenesis--at the desired site on the gene encoding the POI. This plasmid is then transfected into mammalian cells, along with another plasmid that encodes an aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase/tRNA (RS/tRNA) pair that is orthogonal to the host's translational machinery. In the presence of the ncAA, the orthogonal RS/tRNA pair specifically suppresses the Amber codon by incorporating the ncAA into the polypeptide chain of the POI. In the second step, the expressed POI is labeled with a suitably reactive dye derivative that is directly supplied to the growth medium. We provide a detailed protocol for using commercially available ncAAs and dyes for labeling the insulin receptor, and we discuss the optimal surface-labeling conditions and the limitations of labeling living mammalian cells. The protocol involves an initial cloning step that can take 4-7 d, followed by the described transfections and labeling reaction steps, which can take 3-4 d.

  9. Live cell imaging of early autophagy events: omegasomes and beyond.

    PubMed

    Karanasios, Eleftherios; Stapleton, Eloise; Walker, Simon A; Manifava, Maria; Ktistakis, Nicholas T

    2013-07-27

    Autophagy is a cellular response triggered by the lack of nutrients, especially the absence of amino acids. Autophagy is defined by the formation of double membrane structures, called autophagosomes, that sequester cytoplasm, long-lived proteins and protein aggregates, defective organelles, and even viruses or bacteria. Autophagosomes eventually fuse with lysosomes leading to bulk degradation of their content, with the produced nutrients being recycled back to the cytoplasm. Therefore, autophagy is crucial for cell homeostasis, and dysregulation of autophagy can lead to disease, most notably neurodegeneration, ageing and cancer. Autophagosome formation is a very elaborate process, for which cells have allocated a specific group of proteins, called the core autophagy machinery. The core autophagy machinery is functionally complemented by additional proteins involved in diverse cellular processes, e.g. in membrane trafficking, in mitochondrial and lysosomal biology. Coordination of these proteins for the formation and degradation of autophagosomes constitutes the highly dynamic and sophisticated response of autophagy. Live cell imaging allows one to follow the molecular contribution of each autophagy-related protein down to the level of a single autophagosome formation event and in real time, therefore this technique offers a high temporal and spatial resolution. Here we use a cell line stably expressing GFP-DFCP1, to establish a spatial and temporal context for our analysis. DFCP1 marks omegasomes, which are precursor structures leading to autophagosomes formation. A protein of interest (POI) can be marked with either a red or cyan fluorescent tag. Different organelles, like the ER, mitochondria and lysosomes, are all involved in different steps of autophagosome formation, and can be marked using a specific tracker dye. Time-lapse microscopy of autophagy in this experimental set up, allows information to be extracted about the fourth dimension, i.e. time. Hence we

  10. Videomicrofluorometry on living cells and discriminant factorial analysis to study cell cycle distributions.

    PubMed

    Savatier, J; Gbankoto, A; Vigo, J; Salmon, J M

    2004-01-01

    After a rapid overview of the approaches used to study cell cycle, a fluorescent digital imaging microscopy method is proposed. This method is improved by a factorial analysis relying on the evaluation of several parameters recorded on each living cell. Single lympho-blastoid living cells are labeled with three fluorescent markers: Hoechst 33342 for nuclear DNA, Rhodamine 123 for mitochondria and Nile Red for plasma membrane. For each cell, morphological and functional information parameters are obtained. A typological analysis is used to separate control cells into four groups: G0-G1, S, G2+M and polyploid cells Gn. These control cells define a learning population used to analyze untreated and adriamycine treated cells as supplementary individuals in a discriminant factorial analysis. Such an approach allows to accurately evidence the change of the values of some cellular parameters.

  11. Cell sheet engineering for regenerative medicine: current challenges and strategies.

    PubMed

    Owaki, Toshiyuki; Shimizu, Tatsuya; Yamato, Masayuki; Okano, Teruo

    2014-07-01

    Substantial progress made in the areas of stem cell research and regenerative medicine has provided a number of innovative methods to repair or regenerate defective tissues and organs. Although previous studies regarding regenerative medicine, especially those involving induced pluripotent stem cells, have been actively promoted in the past decade, there remain some challenges that need to be addressed in order to enable clinical applications. Designed for use in clinical applications, cell sheet engineering has been developed as a unique, scaffold-free method of cell processing utilizing temperature-responsive cell culture vessels. Clinical studies using cell sheets have shown positive outcomes and will be translated into clinical practice in the near future. However, several challenges stand in the way of the industrialization of cell sheet products and the widespread acceptance of regenerative medicine based on cell sheet engineering. This review describes current strategies geared towards the realization of the regenerative medicine approach.

  12. Raman spectroscopy of a single living cell in environmentally stressed conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Gajendra P.; Creely, Caitriona; Volpe, Giovanni; Grotsch, Helga; Petrov, Dmitri

    2005-08-01

    Living cells initiate a stress response in order to survive environmentally stressful conditions. We monitored changes in the Raman spectra of an optically trapped Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast cell under normal and hyperosmotic stress conditions. When the yeast cells were challenged with a high concentration of glucose so as to exert hyperosmotic stress, it was shown that two chemical substances - glycerol and ethanol - could be monitored in real time in a single cell. The volume of the detection area of our confocal microspectrometer is approximately 1 fL. The average quantities of detected glycerol and ethanol are about 300 attomol and 700 attomol respectively. This amounts to the detection of approximately 108 glycerol molecules and 4 X 108 ethanol molecules after 36 min of hyper osmotic stress. Besides this, we also optically trapped a single yeast cell for up to three hours under normal conditions and monitored the changes in the Raman spectra during the lag phase of its growth and the G1 phase of its cell cycle. During the lag phase the cell synthesises new proteins and the observed behavior of the peaks corresponding to these proteins as well as those of RNA served as a sensitive indicator of the adaptation of the cell to its changed environment. The changes observed in the Raman spectra of a trapped yeast cell in the late G1 phase or the beginning of S phase corresponded to the growth of a bud.

  13. Live-cell protein labelling with nanometre precision by cell squeezing

    PubMed Central

    Kollmannsperger, Alina; Sharei, Armon; Raulf, Anika; Heilemann, Mike; Langer, Robert; Jensen, Klavs F.; Wieneke, Ralph; Tampé, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Live-cell labelling techniques to visualize proteins with minimal disturbance are important; however, the currently available methods are limited in their labelling efficiency, specificity and cell permeability. We describe high-throughput protein labelling facilitated by minimalistic probes delivered to mammalian cells by microfluidic cell squeezing. High-affinity and target-specific tracing of proteins in various subcellular compartments is demonstrated, culminating in photoinduced labelling within live cells. Both the fine-tuned delivery of subnanomolar concentrations and the minimal size of the probe allow for live-cell super-resolution imaging with very low background and nanometre precision. This method is fast in probe delivery (∼1,000,000 cells per second), versatile across cell types and can be readily transferred to a multitude of proteins. Moreover, the technique succeeds in combination with well-established methods to gain multiplexed labelling and has demonstrated potential to precisely trace target proteins, in live mammalian cells, by super-resolution microscopy. PMID:26822409

  14. Mechanodelivery of nanoparticles to the cytoplasm of living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emerson, Nyssa T.; Hsia, Chih-Hao; Rafalska-Metcalf, Ilona U.; Yang, Haw

    2014-04-01

    Nanotechnology has opened up the opportunity to probe, sense, and manipulate the chemical environment of biological systems with an unprecedented level of spatiotemporal control. A major obstacle to the full realization of these novel technologies is the lack of a general, robust, and simple method for the delivery of arbitrary nanostructures to the cytoplasm of intact live cells. Here, we identify a new delivery modality, based on mechanical disruption of the plasma membrane, which efficiently mediates the delivery of nanoparticles to the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. We use two distinct execution modes, two adherent cell lines, and three sizes of semiconducting nanocrystals, or quantum dots, to demonstrate its applicability and effectiveness. As the underlying mechanism is purely physical, we anticipate that such ``mechanodelivery'' can be generalized to other modes of execution as well as to the cytoplasmic introduction of a structurally diverse array of functional nanomaterials.Nanotechnology has opened up the opportunity to probe, sense, and manipulate the chemical environment of biological systems with an unprecedented level of spatiotemporal control. A major obstacle to the full realization of these novel technologies is the lack of a general, robust, and simple method for the delivery of arbitrary nanostructures to the cytoplasm of intact live cells. Here, we identify a new delivery modality, based on mechanical disruption of the plasma membrane, which efficiently mediates the delivery of nanoparticles to the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. We use two distinct execution modes, two adherent cell lines, and three sizes of semiconducting nanocrystals, or quantum dots, to demonstrate its applicability and effectiveness. As the underlying mechanism is purely physical, we anticipate that such ``mechanodelivery'' can be generalized to other modes of execution as well as to the cytoplasmic introduction of a structurally diverse array of functional nanomaterials

  15. Rapid 3D Refractive‐Index Imaging of Live Cells in Suspension without Labeling Using Dielectrophoretic Cell Rotation

    PubMed Central

    Habaza, Mor; Kirschbaum, Michael; Guernth‐Marschner, Christian; Dardikman, Gili; Barnea, Itay; Korenstein, Rafi; Duschl, Claus

    2016-01-01

    A major challenge in the field of optical imaging of live cells is achieving rapid, 3D, and noninvasive imaging of isolated cells without labeling. If successful, many clinical procedures involving analysis and sorting of cells drawn from body fluids, including blood, can be significantly improved. A new label‐free tomographic interferometry approach is presented. This approach provides rapid capturing of the 3D refractive‐index distribution of single cells in suspension. The cells flow in a microfluidic channel, are trapped, and then rapidly rotated by dielectrophoretic forces in a noninvasive and precise manner. Interferometric projections of the rotated cell are acquired and processed into the cellular 3D refractive‐index map. Uniquely, this approach provides full (360°) coverage of the rotation angular range around any axis, and knowledge on the viewing angle. The experimental demonstrations presented include 3D, label‐free imaging of cancer cells and three types of white blood cells. This approach is expected to be useful for label‐free cell sorting, as well as for detection and monitoring of pathological conditions resulting in cellular morphology changes or occurrence of specific cell types in blood or other body fluids. PMID:28251046

  16. Directing the assembly of nanostructured films with living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brinker, C. Jeffrey

    2007-03-01

    This talk describes our recent discovery of the ability of living cells to organize extended nanostructures and nano-objects in a manner that creates a unique, highly biocompatible nano//bio interface (Science 313, 337-340, 2006). We find that, using short chain phospholipids to direct the formation of thin film silica mesophases during evaporation-induced self-assembly, the introduction of cells (so far yeast and bacteria) alters profoundly the inorganic self-assembly pathway. Cells actively organize around themselves an ordered, multilayered lipid-membrane that interfaces coherently with a lipid-templated silica mesophase. This bio/nano interface is unique in that it withstands drying (even evacuation) without cracking or the development of tensile stresses -- yet it maintains accessibility to molecules, proteins/antibodies, plasmids, etc - introduced into the 3D silica host. Additionally cell viability is preserved for weeks to months in the absence of buffer, making these constructs useful as standalone cell-based sensors. The bio/nano interfaces we describe do not form `passively' -- rather they are a consequence of the cell's ability to sense and actively respond to external stimuli. During EISA, solvent evaporation concentrates the extracellular environment in osmolytes. In response to this hyperosmotic stress, the cells release water, creating a gradient in pH, which is maintained within the adjoining nanostructured host and serves to localize lipids, proteins, plasmids, lipidized nanocrystals, and a variety of other components at the cellular surface. This active organization of the bio/nano interface can be accomplished during ink-jet printing or selective wetting -- processes allowing patterning of cellular arrays - and even spatially-defined genetic modification.

  17. Enhanced live cell imaging via photonic crystal enhanced fluorescence microscopy.

    PubMed

    Chen, Weili; Long, Kenneth D; Yu, Hojeong; Tan, Yafang; Choi, Ji Sun; Harley, Brendan A; Cunningham, Brian T

    2014-11-21

    We demonstrate photonic crystal enhanced fluorescence (PCEF) microscopy as a surface-specific fluorescence imaging technique to study the adhesion of live cells by visualizing variations in cell-substrate gap distance. This approach utilizes a photonic crystal surface incorporated into a standard microscope slide as the substrate for cell adhesion, and a microscope integrated with a custom illumination source as the detection instrument. When illuminated with a monochromatic light source, angle-specific optical resonances supported by the photonic crystal enable efficient excitation of surface-confined and amplified electromagnetic fields when excited at an on-resonance condition, while no field enhancement occurs when the same photonic crystal is illuminated in an off-resonance state. By mapping the fluorescence enhancement factor for fluorophore-tagged cellular components between on- and off-resonance states and comparing the results to numerical calculations, the vertical distance of labelled cellular components from the photonic crystal substrate can be estimated, providing critical and quantitative information regarding the spatial distribution of the specific components of cells attaching to a surface. As an initial demonstration of the concept, 3T3 fibroblast cells were grown on fibronectin-coated photonic crystals with fluorophore-labelled plasma membrane or nucleus. We demonstrate that PCEF microscopy is capable of providing information about the spatial distribution of cell-surface interactions at the single-cell level that is not available from other existing forms of microscopy, and that the approach is amenable to large fields of view, without the need for coupling prisms, coupling fluids, or special microscope objectives.

  18. Understanding dynamic changes in live cell adhesion with neutron reflectometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Junghans, Ann

    Understanding the structure and functionality of biological systems on a nanometer-resolution and short temporal scales is important for solving complex biological problems, developing innovative treatment, and advancing the design of highly functionalized biomimetic materials. For example, adhesion of cells to an underlying substrate plays a crucial role in physiology and disease development, and has been investigated with great interest for several decades. In the talk, we would like to highlight recent advances in utilizing neutron scattering to study bio-related structures in dynamic conditions (e . g . under the shear flow) including in-situ investigations of the interfacial properties of living cells. The strength of neutron reflectometry is its non-pertubative nature, the ability to probe buried interfaces with nanometer resolution and its sensitivity to light elements like hydrogen and carbon. That allows us to study details of cell - substrate interfaces that are not accessible with any other standard techniques. We studied the adhesion of human brain tumor cells (U251) to quartz substrates and their responses to the external mechanical forces. Such cells are isolated within the central nervous system which makes them difficult to reach with conventional therapies and therefore making them highly invasive. Our results reveal changes in the thickness and composition of the adhesion layer (a layer between the cell lipid membrane and the quartz substrate), largely composed of hyaluronic acid and associated proteoglycans, when the cells were subjected to shear stress. Further studies will allow us to determine more conditions triggering changes in the composition of the bio-material in the adhesion layer. This, in turn, can help to identify changes that correlate with tumor invasiveness, which can have significant medical impact for the development of targeted anti-invasive therapies.

  19. Nonmuscle myosin II isoforms coassemble in living cells.

    PubMed

    Beach, Jordan R; Shao, Lin; Remmert, Kirsten; Li, Dong; Betzig, Eric; Hammer, John A

    2014-05-19

    Nonmuscle myosin II (NM II) powers myriad developmental and cellular processes, including embryogenesis, cell migration, and cytokinesis [1]. To exert its functions, monomers of NM II assemble into bipolar filaments that produce a contractile force on the actin cytoskeleton. Mammalian cells express up to three isoforms of NM II (NM IIA, IIB, and IIC), each of which possesses distinct biophysical properties and supports unique as well as redundant cellular functions [2-8]. Despite previous efforts [9-13], it remains unclear whether NM II isoforms assemble in living cells to produce mixed (heterotypic) bipolar filaments or whether filaments consist entirely of a single isoform (homotypic). We addressed this question using fluorescently tagged versions of NM IIA, IIB, and IIC, isoform-specific immunostaining of the endogenous proteins, and two-color total internal reflection fluorescence structured-illumination microscopy, or TIRF-SIM, to visualize individual myosin II bipolar filaments inside cells. We show that NM II isoforms coassemble into heterotypic filaments in a variety of settings, including various types of stress fibers, individual filaments throughout the cell, and the contractile ring. We also show that the differential distribution of NM IIA and NM IIB typically seen in confocal micrographs of well-polarized cells is reflected in the composition of individual bipolar filaments. Interestingly, this differential distribution is less pronounced in freshly spread cells, arguing for the existence of a sorting mechanism acting over time. Together, our work argues that individual NM II isoforms are potentially performing both isoform-specific and isoform-redundant functions while coassembled with other NM II isoforms.

  20. Enhanced live cell imaging via photonic crystal enhanced fluorescence microscopy†

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Weili; Long, Kenneth D.; Yu, Hojeong; Tan, Yafang; Choi, Ji Sun; Harley, Brendan A.; Cunningham, Brian T.

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate photonic crystal enhanced fluorescence (PCEF) microscopy as a surface-specific fluorescence imaging technique to study the adhesion of live cells by visualizing variations in cell-substrate gap distance. This approach utilizes a photonic crystal surface incorporated into a standard microscope slide as the substrate for cell adhesion, and a microscope integrated with a custom illumination source as the detection instrument. When illuminated with a monochromatic light source, angle-specific optical resonances supported by the photonic crystal enable efficient excitation of surface-confined and amplified electromagnetic fields when excited at an on-resonance condition, while no field enhancement occurs when the same photonic crystal is illuminated in an off-resonance state. By mapping the fluorescence enhancement factor for fluorophore-tagged cellular components between on- and off-resonance states and comparing the results to numerical calculations, the vertical distance of labelled cellular components from the photonic crystal substrate can be estimated, providing critical and quantitative information regarding the spatial distribution of the specific components of cells attaching to a surface. As an initial demonstration of the concept, 3T3 fibroblast cells were grown on fibronectin-coated photonic crystals with fluorophore-labelled plasma membrane or nucleus. We demonstrate that PCEF microscopy is capable of providing information about the spatial distribution of cell-surface interactions at the single-cell level that is not available from other existing forms of microscopy, and that the approach is amenable to large fields of view, without the need for coupling prisms, coupling fluids, or special microscope objectives. PMID:25265458

  1. Living on three time scales: the dynamics of plasma cell and antibody populations illustrated for hepatitis a virus.

    PubMed

    Andraud, Mathieu; Lejeune, Olivier; Musoro, Jammbe Z; Ogunjimi, Benson; Beutels, Philippe; Hens, Niel

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms involved in long-term persistence of humoral immunity after natural infection or vaccination is challenging and crucial for further research in immunology, vaccine development as well as health policy. Long-lived plasma cells, which have recently been shown to reside in survival niches in the bone marrow, are instrumental in the process of immunity induction and persistence. We developed a mathematical model, assuming two antibody-secreting cell subpopulations (short- and long-lived plasma cells), to analyze the antibody kinetics after HAV-vaccination using data from two long-term follow-up studies. Model parameters were estimated through a hierarchical nonlinear mixed-effects model analysis. Long-term individual predictions were derived from the individual empirical parameters and were used to estimate the mean time to immunity waning. We show that three life spans are essential to explain the observed antibody kinetics: that of the antibodies (around one month), the short-lived plasma cells (several months) and the long-lived plasma cells (decades). Although our model is a simplified representation of the actual mechanisms that govern individual immune responses, the level of agreement between long-term individual predictions and observed kinetics is reassuringly close. The quantitative assessment of the time scales over which plasma cells and antibodies live and interact provides a basis for further quantitative research on immunology, with direct consequences for understanding the epidemiology of infectious diseases, and for timing serum sampling in clinical trials of vaccines.

  2. Serological, intradermal and live flea challenge tests in the assessment of hypersensitivity to flea antigens in cats (Felis domesticus).

    PubMed

    Bond, Ross; Hutchinson, Melanie J; Loeffler, Anette

    2006-09-01

    The results of intradermal testing with three commercial flea antigens and a serological test for IgE antibodies to flea antigens were compared with live flea challenge in cats. Eight control cats with no prior flea exposure had negative serological test and flea challenge results. By contrast, 17 out of 27 cats with previous flea exposure showed immediate reactivity to flea challenge; reactivity at 6, 24 and 48 h after flea exposure was noted in 12, 16 and 21 cats, respectively. Seventeen of these cats had positive serological test results. Seven cats showed immediate intradermal test reactions to the ARTU allergen, six reacted to the Biophady allergen, and six reacted to the Greer allergen. Intradermal test reactivity was less frequent at the other time points. Using the results of the flea challenge as the 'gold standard' for the presence or absence of sensitisation to fleas, the sensitivity and specificity of the serological test was 0.88 and 0.77, respectively. Sensitivities of the intradermal tests at the four time points ranged from 0 to 0.33, whereas the specificities ranged from 0.78 to 1.0. Live flea challenge is better able to detect cats with hypersensitivity to fleas than either intradermal or serological testing.

  3. The influence of dietary locust bean gum and live yeast on some digestive immunological parameters of piglets experimentally challenged with Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Badia, R; Lizardo, R; Martinez, P; Badiola, I; Brufau, J

    2012-12-01

    Gums and yeast cells are natural mannose-rich products that can be used as subtracts for adhesion of gram-negative bacteria. The aim of the study was to investigate the role of dietary locust bean gum (LBG; Salmosan, ITPSA, Spain) or live yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae Sc47; Actisaf, Lesaffre, France) as immunological enhancers of the intestinal function of piglets. Treatments included a noninfected group fed with a control diet and 4 other groups orally challenged with 1x10(8) cfu of Escherichia coli K88. The challenged groups were fed the control or the control diet supplemented with colistin, LBG, or yeast. Twenty-five Landrace × Duroc piglets weaned at 4 wk were used. The animals were group housed, challenged on day 14, and euthanized 2 d later. Blood, bile, ileum, and mesenteric lymph node (MLN) samples were obtained for analysis of C-reactive protein (CRP), secretory immunoglobulin A (sIgA), and Toll-like receptors 2 (TLR2) and 4 (TLR4). Challenge increased the level of CRP of piglets fed the control diet, but this did not happen in the piglets fed the supplemented diets (P < 0.001). Challenge upregulated TLR2 in MLN and TLR4 in ileum and MLN (P < 0.05). This was prevented by yeast supplementation for the TLR2 in MLN and TLR4 in ileum. Pigs fed colistin and LBG diets showed intermediate but nonsignificant responses. In conclusion, the results suggest that colistin, live yeast, and LBG reduce the levels of CRP in blood of piglets challenged with E. coli, and yeast reduces the expression of Toll-like receptors in the intestine.

  4. Interaction of carbohydrate modified boron nitride nanotubes with living cells.

    PubMed

    Emanet, Melis; Şen, Özlem; Çobandede, Zehra; Çulha, Mustafa

    2015-10-01

    Boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) are composed of boron and nitrogen atoms and they show significantly different properties from their carbon analogues (carbon nanotubes, CNTs). Due to their unique properties including low electrical conductivity, and imaging contrast and neutron capture properties; they can be used in biomedical applications. When their use in biological fields is considered, the route of their toxic effect should be clarified. Therefore, the study of interactions between BNNTs and living systems is important in envisaging biological applications at both cellular and sub-cellular levels to fully gain insights of their potential adverse effects. In this study, BNNTs were modified with lactose, glucose and starch and tested for their cytotoxicity. First, the interactions and the behavior of BNNTs with bovine serum albumin (BSA), Dulbecco's Modified Eagle's Medium (DMEM) and DMEM/Nutrient Mixture F-12Ham were investigated. Thereafter, their cellular uptake and the cyto- and genotoxicity on human dermal fibroblasts (HDFs) and adenocarcinoma human alveolar basal epithelial cells (A549) were evaluated. HDFs and A549 cells internalized the modified and unmodified BNNTs, and BNNTs were found to not cause significant viability change and DNA damage. A higher uptake rate of BNNTs by A549 cells compared to HDFs was observed. Moreover, a concentration-dependent cytotoxicity was observed on A549 cells while they were safer for HDFs in the same concentration range. Based on these findings, it can be concluded that BNNTs and their derivatives made with biomacromolecules might be good candidates for several applications in medicine and biomedical applications.

  5. Fluorescence and polarization imaging of membrane dynamics in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, M.; Weber, P.; Bruns, T.; Strauss, W. S. L.; Schneckenburger, H.

    2009-02-01

    Methods of wide field fluorescence microscopy for measuring membrane dynamics in living cells are described. These methods are based on laser pulse excitation of the membrane marker 6-dodecanoyl-2-dimethylamino naphthalene (laurdan) whose emission spectra, fluorescence decay kinetics and anisotropies are sensitive to membrane stiffness and fluidity. Plasma membranes are selected by illumination with an evanescent electromagnetic field and distinguished from intracellular membranes assessed by whole cell illumination. While fluorescence spectra of laurdan appeared red-shifted with decreasing membrane stiffness, fluorescence anisotropy and rotational relaxation times were reduced with increasing membrane fluidity. Membrane stiffness was found to increase with decreasing temperature and increasing amounts of cholesterol. In addition, membrane stiffness of the plasma membrane was always higher than that of intracellular membranes. These effects may have some influence on pathogenesis of certain diseases, uptake of pharmaceutical agents or cell aging. Present experiments are limited to fluorescence microscopy with total internal reflection (TIR) or epi-illumination, but corresponding methods can also be used for screening of larger cell collectives, e.g. in microtiter plates.

  6. Enlightening intracellular complexity of living cells with quantitative phase microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez Torres, C.; Laperrousaz, B.; Berguiga, L.; Boyer Provera, E.; Elezgaray, J.; Nicolini, F. E.; Maguer-Satta, V.; Arneodo, A.; Argoul, F.

    2016-03-01

    The internal distribution of refractive indices (RIs) of a living cell is much more complex than usually admitted in multi-shell models. The reconstruction of RI maps from single phase images has rarely been achieved for several reasons: (i) we still have very little knowledge of the impact of internal macromolecular complexes on the local RI and (ii) phase changes produced by light propagation through the sample are mixed with diffraction effects by internal cell bodies. We propose the implementation a 2D wavelet-based contour chain detection method to distinguish internal boundaries thanks to their greatest optical path difference gradients. These contour chains correspond to the highest image phase contrast and follow the local RI inhomogeneities linked to the intracellular structural intricacy. Their statistics and spatial distribution are morphological indicators for distinguishing cells of different origins and to follow their transformation in pathologic situations. We use this method to compare non adherent blood cells from primary and laboratory culture origins, in healthy and pathological situations (chronic myelogenous leukaemia). In a second part of this presentation, we concentrate on the temporal dynamics of the phase contour chains and we discuss the spectral decomposition of their dynamics in both health and disease.

  7. Using Live-Cell Markers in Maize to Analyze Cell Division Orientation and Timing.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Carolyn G

    2016-01-01

    Recently developed live-cell markers provide an opportunity to explore the dynamics and localization of proteins in maize, an important crop and model for monocot development. A step-by-step method is outlined for observing and analyzing the process of division in maize cells. The steps include plant growth conditions, sample preparation, time-lapse setup, and calculation of division rates.

  8. Phasor FLIM metabolic mapping of stem cells and cancer cells in live tissues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stringari, Chiara; Donovan, Peter; Gratton, Enrico

    2012-03-01

    We use the phasor approach to fluorescence lifetime imaging and intrinsic biochemical fluorescence biomarkers in conjunction with image segmentation and the concept of cell phasor for deriving metabolic maps of cells and living tissues in vivo. In issues we identify and separate intrinsic fluorophores such as collagen, retinol, retinoic acid, porphyrin, flavins, free and bound nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH). Metabolic signatures of tissues are obtained by calculating the phasor fingerprint of single cells and by mapping the relative concentration of metabolites. This method detects small changes in metabolic signatures and redox states of cells. Phasor fingerprints of stem cells cluster according to their differentiation state in a living tissue such as the C. elegans germ line and the crypt base of small intestine and colon. Phasor FLIM provides a label-free and fit-free sensitive method to identify metabolic states of cells and to classify stem cells, normal differentiated cells and cancer cells both in vitro and in a live tissue. Our method could identify symmetric and asymmetric divisions, predict cell fate and identify pre-cancer stages in vivo. This method is a promising non-invasive optical tool for monitoring metabolic pathways during differentiation and carcinogenesis, for cell sorting and high throughput screening.

  9. Myoglobin's old and new clothes: from molecular structure to function in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Gros, Gerolf; Wittenberg, Beatrice A.; Jue, Thomas

    2010-01-01

    Myoglobin, a mobile carrier of oxygen, is without a doubt an important player central to the physiological function of heart and skeletal muscle. Recently, researchers have surmounted technical challenges to measure Mb diffusion in the living cell. Their observations have stimulated a discussion about the relative contribution made by Mb-facilitated diffusion to the total oxygen flux. The calculation of the relative contribution, however, depends upon assumptions, the cell model and cell architecture, cell bioenergetics, oxygen supply and demand. The analysis suggests that important differences can be observed whether steady-state or transient conditions are considered. This article reviews the current evidence underlying the evaluation of the biophysical parameters of myoglobin-facilitated oxygen diffusion in cells, specifically the intracellular concentration of myoglobin, the intracellular diffusion coefficient of myoglobin and the intracellular myoglobin oxygen saturation. The review considers the role of myoglobin in oxygen transport in vertebrate heart and skeletal muscle, in the diving seal during apnea as well as the role of the analogous leghemoglobin of plants. The possible role of myoglobin in intracellular fatty acid transport is addressed. Finally, the recent measurements of myoglobin diffusion inside muscle cells are discussed in terms of their implications for cytoarchitecture and microviscosity in these cells and the identification of intracellular impediments to the diffusion of proteins inside cells. The recent experimental data then help to refine our understanding of Mb function and establish a basis for future investigation. PMID:20675540

  10. Translating stem cell research: challenges at the research frontier.

    PubMed

    Magnus, David

    2010-01-01

    This paper will address the translation of basic stem cell research into clinical research. While "stem cell" trials are sometimes used to describe established practices of bone marrow transplantation or transplantation of primary cells derived from bone marrow, for the purposes of this paper, I am primarily focusing on stem cell trials which are far less established, including use of hESC derived stem cells. The central ethical challenges in stem cell clinical trials arise in frontier research, not in standard, well-established areas of research.

  11. Quantitative imaging of glutathione in live cells using a reversible reaction-based ratiometric fluorescent probe

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Glutathione (GSH) plays an important role in maintaining redox homeostasis inside cells. Currently, there are no methods available to quantitatively assess the GSH concentration in live cells. Live cell fluorescence imaging revolutionized the understanding of cell biology and has become an indispens...

  12. Microfluidic geometric metering-based multi-reagent mixture generator for robust live cell screening array.

    PubMed

    Wang, Han; Kim, Jeongyun; Jayaraman, Arul; Han, Arum

    2014-12-01

    Microfluidic live cell arrays with integrated concentration gradient or mixture generators have been utilized in screening cellular responses to various biomolecular cues. Microfluidic network-based gradient generators that can create concentration gradients by repeatedly splitting and mixing different solutions using networks of serpentine channels are commonly used. However, in this method the generation of concentration gradients relies on the continuous flow of sample solutions at optimized flow rates, which poses challenges in maintaining the pressure and flow stability throughout the entire assay period. Here we present a microfluidic live cell screening array with an on-demand multi-reagent mixture generator where the mixing ratios, thus generated concentrations, are hard-wired into the chip itself through a geometric metering method. This platform showed significantly improved robustness and repeatability in generating concentration gradients of fluorescent dyes (average coefficient of variance C.V. = 9 %) compared to the conventional network-based gradient generators (average C.V. = 21 %). In studying the concentration dependent effects of the environmental toxicant 3-methylcholanthrene (3MC) on the activation of cytochrome P450 1A1 (Cyp 1A1) enzyme in H4IIE rat hepatoma cells, statistical variation of the Cyp 1A1 response was significantly lower (C.V. = 5 %) when using the developed mixture generator compared to that using the conventional gradient generator (C.V. = 12 %). Reduction in reagent consumption by 12-times was also achieved. This robust, accurate, and scalable multi-reagent mixture generator integrated with a cell culture array as a live cell assay platform can be readily implemented into various screening applications where repeatability, robustness, and low reagent consumptions over long periods of assay time are of importance.

  13. Live Staphylococcus aureus Induces Expression and Release of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor in Terminally Differentiated Mouse Mast Cells.

    PubMed

    Johnzon, Carl-Fredrik; Rönnberg, Elin; Guss, Bengt; Pejler, Gunnar

    2016-01-01

    Mast cells have been shown to express vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), thereby implicating mast cells in pro-angiogenic processes. However, the mechanism of VEGF induction in mast cells and the possible expression of VEGF in fully mature mast cells have not been extensively studied. Here, we report that terminally differentiated peritoneal cell-derived mast cells can be induced to express VEGF in response to challenge with Staphylococcus aureus, thus identifying a mast cell-bacteria axis as a novel mechanism leading to VEGF release. Whereas live bacteria produced a robust upregulation of VEGF in mast cells, heat-inactivated bacteria failed to do so, and bacteria-conditioned media did not induce VEGF expression. The induction of VEGF was not critically dependent on direct cell-cell contact between bacteria and mast cells. Hence, these findings suggest that VEGF can be induced by soluble factors released during the co-culture conditions. Neither of a panel of bacterial cell-wall products known to activate toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling promoted VEGF expression in mast cells. In agreement with the latter, VEGF induction occurred independently of Myd88, an adaptor molecule that mediates the downstream events following TLR engagement. The VEGF induction was insensitive to nuclear factor of activated T-cells inhibition but was partly dependent on the nuclear factor kappa light-chain enhancer of activated B cells signaling pathway. Together, these findings identify bacterial challenge as a novel mechanism by which VEGF is induced in mast cells.

  14. Surface Trafficking of APP and BACE in Live Cells.

    PubMed

    Bauereiss, Anna; Welzel, Oliver; Jung, Jasmin; Grosse-Holz, Simon; Lelental, Natalia; Lewczuk, Piotr; Wenzel, Eva M; Kornhuber, Johannes; Groemer, Teja W

    2015-06-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ)-peptide, the major constituent of the plaques that develop during Alzheimer's disease, is generated via the cleavage of Aβ precursor protein (APP) by β-site APP-cleaving enzyme (BACE). Using live-cell imaging of APP and BACE labeled with pH-sensitive proteins, we could detect the release events of APP and BACE and their distinct kinetics. We provide kinetic evidence for the cleavage of APP by α-secretase on the cellular surface after exocytosis. Furthermore, simultaneous dual-color evanescent field illumination revealed that the two proteins are trafficked to the surface in separate compartments. Perturbing the membrane lipid composition resulted in a reduced frequency of exocytosis and affected BACE more strongly than APP. We propose that surface fusion frequency is a key factor regulating the aggregation of APP and BACE in the same membrane compartment and that this process can be modulated via pharmacological intervention.

  15. Bioluminescence microscopy: application to ATP measurements in single living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brau, Frederic; Helle, Pierre; Bernengo, Jean C.

    1997-12-01

    Bioluminescence microscopy can be used to measure intracellular cofactors and ionic concentrations (Ca2+, K+, ATP, NADH), as an alternative to micro- spectrophotometry and micro-fluorimetry, due to the development of sensitive detectors (cooled photomultipliers tubes and CCD). The main limitation comes from the very small and brief intensity of the emitted light. Our instrumentation based on an inverted microscope, equipped with high aperture immersion lenses is presented. Light intensity measurements are carried out through a photomultiplier sorted for low dark current and cooled at -5 degree(s)C to reduce thermal noise. Our first aim is to quantify ATP on single living cells using the firefly luciferin-luciferase couple. Experimental and kinetic aspects are presented to emphasize the potentialities of the technique.

  16. Precise microinjection into living cells by summation of fluorescence intensity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taninaka, Kiyoshi; Yabuki, A.; Ito, A.; Harada, T.

    2007-02-01

    It is difficult to introduce a specific amount of a substance into cells by existing injection methods because there is no appropriate method of directly measuring the quantity of the injected substance. Although radioisotopes can be used, there is currently no apparatus that can practically handle such radioisotopes. The measurement of the diameter of a liquid droplet in air or oil is affected by surface tension if the liquid droplet is very small; but this issue does not occur with microinjection, in which a water solution is discharged under pressure through a capillary and into a cell. It is also difficult to measure the density or mass of the injected substance because of the low discharge rate, unlike the case of inkjet printers. To solve these problems, we propose a method of precise microinjection by summation of fluorescence intensity. In addition, we developed a new pressure pulse injection device that generates pressure with a rectangular waveform and a precise amplitude and pulse width to improve controllability of the discharge amount. Lastly, when the above device and method are combined, the coefficient of correlation between the specified number of pressure pulses per unit of time and the actual discharge amount exceeded 0.999. This research paper describes in detail the measurement system, standalone performance, and quantities of substances introduced into living cells.

  17. Flexible and dynamic nucleosome fiber in living mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Nozaki, Tadasu; Kaizu, Kazunari; Pack, Chan-Gi; Tamura, Sachiko; Tani, Tomomi; Hihara, Saera; Nagai, Takeharu; Takahashi, Koichi; Maeshima, Kazuhiro

    2013-01-01

    Genomic DNA is organized three dimensionally within cells as chromatin and is searched and read by various proteins by an unknown mechanism; this mediates diverse cell functions. Recently, several pieces of evidence, including our cryomicroscopy and synchrotron X-ray scattering analyses, have demonstrated that chromatin consists of irregularly folded nucleosome fibers without a 30-nm chromatin fiber (i.e., a polymer melt-like structure). This melt-like structure implies a less physically constrained and locally more dynamic state, which may be crucial for protein factors to scan genomic DNA. Using a combined approach of fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, Monte Carlo computer simulations, and single nucleosome imaging, we demonstrated the flexible and dynamic nature of the nucleosome fiber in living mammalian cells. We observed local nucleosome fluctuation (~50 nm movement/30 ms) caused by Brownian motion. Our in vivo/in silico results suggest that local nucleosome dynamics facilitate chromatin accessibility and play a critical role in the scanning of genome information.

  18. Imaging of influenza virus sialidase activity in living cells.

    PubMed

    Kurebayashi, Yuuki; Takahashi, Tadanobu; Otsubo, Tadamune; Ikeda, Kiyoshi; Takahashi, Shunsaku; Takano, Maiko; Agarikuchi, Takashi; Sato, Tsubasa; Matsuda, Yukino; Minami, Akira; Kanazawa, Hiroaki; Uchida, Yuko; Saito, Takehiko; Kawaoka, Yoshihiro; Yamada, Toshihiro; Kawamori, Fumihiko; Thomson, Robin; von Itzstein, Mark; Suzuki, Takashi

    2014-05-02

    Influenza virus is rich in variation and mutations. It would be very convenient for virus detection and isolation to histochemically detect viral infection regardless of variation and mutations. Here, we established a histochemical imaging assay for influenza virus sialidase activity in living cells by using a new fluorescent sialidase substrate, 2-(benzothiazol-2-yl)-4-bromophenyl 5-acetamido-3,5-dideoxy-α-D-glycero-D-galacto-2-nonulopyranosidonic acid (BTP3-Neu5Ac). The BTP3-Neu5Ac assay histochemically visualized influenza virus-infected cells regardless of viral hosts and subtypes. Influenza virus neuraminidase-expressed cells, viral focus formation, and virus-infected locations in mice lung tissues were easily, rapidly, and sensitively detected by the BTP3-Neu5Ac assay. Histochemical visualization with the BTP3-Neu5Ac assay is extremely useful for detection of influenza viruses without the need for fixation or a specific antibody. This novel assay should greatly improve the efficiency of detection, titration, and isolation of influenza viruses and might contribute to research on viral sialidase.

  19. Synthetic recombinase-based state machines in living cells.

    PubMed

    Roquet, Nathaniel; Soleimany, Ava P; Ferris, Alyssa C; Aaronson, Scott; Lu, Timothy K

    2016-07-22

    State machines underlie the sophisticated functionality behind human-made and natural computing systems that perform order-dependent information processing. We developed a recombinase-based framework for building state machines in living cells by leveraging chemically controlled DNA excision and inversion operations to encode states in DNA sequences. This strategy enables convenient readout of states (by sequencing and/or polymerase chain reaction) as well as complex regulation of gene expression. We validated our framework by engineering state machines in Escherichia coli that used one, two, or three chemical inputs to control up to 16 DNA states. These state machines were capable of recording the temporal order of all inputs and performing multi-input, multi-output control of gene expression. We also developed a computational tool for the automated design of gene regulation programs using recombinase-based state machines. Our scalable framework should enable new strategies for recording and studying how combinational and temporal events regulate complex cell functions and for programming sophisticated cell behaviors.

  20. Optogenetics: optical control of a photoactivatable Rac in living cells.

    PubMed

    Yin, Taofei; Wu, Yi I

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in optogenetics have extended optical control of signaling to intracellular proteins, including Rac, a small G protein in the Rho family. A blue light-sensing LOV (light, oxygen, or voltage) domain derived from Avena sativa (oat) phototropin was fused to the N-terminus of a constitutively active mutant of Rac, via an α-helix (Jα) that is conserved among plant phototropins. The fused LOV domain occluded binding of downstream effectors to Rac in the dark. Exposure to blue light caused a conformational change of the LOV domain and unwinding of the Jα helix, relieving steric inhibition. The LOV domain incorporates a flavin as the photon-absorbing cofactor and can be activated by light in a reversible and repeatable fashion. In cultured cells, global illumination with blue light rapidly activated Rac and led to cell spreading and membrane ruffling. Localized and pulsed illumination generated a gradient of Rac activity and induced directional migration. In this chapter, we will describe the techniques in detail and present some examples of applications of using photoactivatable Rac (PA-Rac) in living cells.

  1. Establishing guidelines for CAR-T cells: challenges and considerations.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wei; Qin, Di-Yuan; Zhang, Bing-Lan; Wei, Wei; Wang, Yong-Sheng; Wei, Yu-Quan

    2016-04-01

    T cells, genetically modified by chimeric antigen receptors (CAR-T), are endowed with specificity to a desired antigen and are cytotoxic to cells expressing the targeted antigen. CAR-T-based cancer immunotherapy is a promising therapy for curing hematological malignancy, such as acute lymphoid leukemia, and is promising for extending their efficacy to defeat solid tumors. To date, dozens of different CAR-T cells have been evaluated in clinical trials to treat tumors; this necessitates the establishment of guidelines for the production and application of CAR-T cells. However, it is challenging to standardize CAR-T cancer therapy because it involves a combination of gene therapy and cell therapy. In this review, we compare the existing guidelines for CAR-T cells and discuss the challenges and considerations for establishing guidance for CAR-T-based cancer immunotherapy.

  2. Multimodality imaging of reporter gene expression using a novel fusion vector in living cells and animals

    DOEpatents

    Gambhir; Sanjiv , Pritha; Ray

    2009-04-28

    Novel double and triple fusion reporter gene constructs harboring distinct imageable reporter genes are provided, as well as applications for the use of such double and triple fusion constructs in living cells and in living animals using distinct imaging technologies.

  3. Multimodality imaging of reporter gene expression using a novel fusion vector in living cells and animals

    DOEpatents

    Gambhir, Sanjiv; Pritha, Ray

    2011-06-07

    Novel double and triple fusion reporter gene constructs harboring distinct imagable reporter genes are provided, as well as applications for the use of such double and triple fusion constructs in living cells and in living animals using distinct imaging technologies.

  4. Multimodality imaging of reporter gene expression using a novel fusion vector in living cells and animals

    SciTech Connect

    Gambhir, Sanjiv; Pritha, Ray

    2015-07-14

    Novel double and triple fusion reporter gene constructs harboring distinct imagable reporter genes are provided, as well as applications for the use of such double and triple fusion constructs in living cells and in living animals using distinct imaging technologies.

  5. Global antibody response to Staphylococcus aureus live-cell vaccination.

    PubMed

    Selle, Martina; Hertlein, Tobias; Oesterreich, Babett; Klemm, Theresa; Kloppot, Peggy; Müller, Elke; Ehricht, Ralf; Stentzel, Sebastian; Bröker, Barbara M; Engelmann, Susanne; Ohlsen, Knut

    2016-04-22

    The pathogen Staphylococcus aureus causes a broad range of severe diseases and is feared for its ability to rapidly develop resistance to antibiotic substances. The increasing number of highly resistant S. aureus infections has accelerated the search for alternative treatment options to close the widening gap in anti-S. aureus therapy. This study analyses the humoral immune response to vaccination of Balb/c mice with sublethal doses of live S. aureus. The elicited antibody pattern in the sera of intravenously and intramuscularly vaccinated mice was determined using of a recently developed protein array. We observed a specific antibody response against a broad set of S. aureus antigens which was stronger following i.v. than i.m. vaccination. Intravenous but not intramuscular vaccination protected mice against an intramuscular challenge infection with a high bacterial dose. Vaccine protection was correlated with the strength of the anti-S. aureus antibody response. This study identified novel vaccine candidates by using protein microarrays as an effective tool and showed that successful vaccination against S. aureus relies on the optimal route of administration.

  6. Global antibody response to Staphylococcus aureus live-cell vaccination

    PubMed Central

    Selle, Martina; Hertlein, Tobias; Oesterreich, Babett; Klemm, Theresa; Kloppot, Peggy; Müller, Elke; Ehricht, Ralf; Stentzel, Sebastian; Bröker, Barbara M.; Engelmann, Susanne; Ohlsen, Knut

    2016-01-01

    The pathogen Staphylococcus aureus causes a broad range of severe diseases and is feared for its ability to rapidly develop resistance to antibiotic substances. The increasing number of highly resistant S. aureus infections has accelerated the search for alternative treatment options to close the widening gap in anti-S. aureus therapy. This study analyses the humoral immune response to vaccination of Balb/c mice with sublethal doses of live S. aureus. The elicited antibody pattern in the sera of intravenously and intramuscularly vaccinated mice was determined using of a recently developed protein array. We observed a specific antibody response against a broad set of S. aureus antigens which was stronger following i.v. than i.m. vaccination. Intravenous but not intramuscular vaccination protected mice against an intramuscular challenge infection with a high bacterial dose. Vaccine protection was correlated with the strength of the anti-S. aureus antibody response. This study identified novel vaccine candidates by using protein microarrays as an effective tool and showed that successful vaccination against S. aureus relies on the optimal route of administration. PMID:27103319

  7. Live-attenuated lentivirus immunization modulates innate immunity and inflammation while protecting rhesus macaques from vaginal simian immunodeficiency virus challenge.

    PubMed

    Genescà, Meritxell; Ma, Zhong-Min; Wang, Yichuan; Assaf, Basel; Qureshi, Huma; Fritts, Linda; Huang, Ying; McChesney, Michael B; Miller, Christopher J

    2012-09-01

    Immunization with attenuated lentiviruses is the only reliable method of protecting rhesus macaques (RM) from vaginal challenge with pathogenic simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV). CD8(+) lymphocyte depletion prior to SIVmac239 vaginal challenge demonstrated that a modest, Gag-specific CD8(+) T cell response induced by immunization with simian-human immunodeficiency virus 89.6 (SHIV89.6) protects RM. Although CD8(+) T cells are required for protection, there is no anamnestic expansion of SIV-specific CD8(+) T cells in any tissues except the vagina after challenge. Further, SHIV immunization increased the number of viral target cells in the vagina and cervix, suggesting that the ratio of target cells to antiviral CD8(+) T cells was not a determinant of protection. We hypothesized that persistent replication of the attenuated vaccine virus modulates inflammatory responses and limits T cell activation and expansion by inducing immunoregulatory T cell populations. We found that attenuated SHIV infection decreased the number of circulating plasmacytoid dendritic cells, suppressed T cell activation, decreased mRNA levels of proinflammatory mediators, and increased mRNA levels of immunoregulatory molecules. Three days after SIV vaginal challenge, SHIV-immunized RM had significantly more T regulatory cells in the vagina than the unimmunized RM. By day 14 postchallenge, immune activation and inflammation were characteristic of unimmunized RM but were minimal in SHIV-immunized RM. Thus, a modest vaccine-induced CD8(+) T cell response in the context of immunoregulatory suppression of T cell activation may protect against vaginal HIV transmission.

  8. The immune response of bovine mammary epithelial cells to live or heat-inactivated Mycoplasma bovis.

    PubMed

    Zbinden, Christina; Pilo, Paola; Frey, Joachim; Bruckmaier, Rupert M; Wellnitz, Olga

    2015-09-30

    Mycoplasma bovis is an emerging bacterial agent causing bovine mastitis. Although these cell wall-free bacteria lack classical virulence factors, they are able to activate the immune system of the host. However, effects on the bovine mammary immune system are not yet well characterized and detailed knowledge would improve the prevention and therapy of mycoplasmal mastitis. The aim of this study was to investigate the immunogenic effects of M. bovis on the mammary gland in an established primary bovine mammary epithelial cell (bMEC) culture system. Primary bMEC of four different cows were challenged with live and heat-inactivated M. bovis strain JF4278 isolated from acute bovine mastitis, as well as with the type strain PG45. The immune response was evaluated 6 and 24h after mycoplasmal challenge by measuring the relative mRNA expression of selected immune factors by quantitative PCR. M. bovis triggered an immune response in bMEC, reflected by the upregulation of tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin(IL)-1β, IL-6, IL-8, lactoferrin, Toll-like receptor-2, RANTES, and serum amyloid A mRNA. Interestingly, this cellular reaction was only observed in response to live, but not to heat-inactivated M. bovis, in contrast to other bacterial pathogens of mastitis such as Staphylococcus aureus. This study provides evidence that bMEC exhibit a strong inflammatory reaction in response to live M. bovis. The lack of a cellular response to heat-inactivated M. bovis supports the current hypothesis that mycoplasmas activate the immune system through secreted secondary metabolites.

  9. Concise review: limbal epithelial stem cell therapy: controversies and challenges.

    PubMed

    O'Callaghan, Anna R; Daniels, Julie T

    2011-12-01

    Limbal epithelial stem cells (LESCs) are a population of stem cells responsible for maintenance and repair of the corneal surface. Injury and disease can result in a deficiency of these stem cells, the vision affecting condition called limbal stem cell deficiency (LSCD) in which the cornea becomes opaque, vascularized, and inflamed. Cultured LESC therapy was first described in 1997;29:19231932-19231932.and LESCs cultured from either patients or donors have been used to successfully treat LSCD. In this review, some of the challenges and controversies associated with cultured LESC therapy will be discussed including alternative stem cell sources.

  10. Neural stem cells and Alzheimer's disease: challenges and hope.

    PubMed

    Zhongling Feng; Gang Zhao; Lei Yu

    2009-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease is characterized by degeneration and dysfunction of synapses and neurons in brain regions critical for learning and memory functions. The endogenous generation of new neurons in certain regions of the mature brain, derived from primitive cells termed neural stem cells, has raised hope that neural stem cells may be recruited for structural brain repair. Stem cell therapy has been suggested as a possible strategy for replacing damaged circuitry and restoring learning and memory abilities in patients with Alzheimer's disease. In this review, we outline the promising investigations that are raising hope, and understanding the challenges behind translating underlying stem cell biology into novel clinical therapeutic potential in Alzheimer's disease.

  11. Rabies challenge of captive striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis) following oral administration of a live vaccinia-vectored rabies vaccine.

    PubMed

    Grosenbaugh, Deborah A; Maki, Joanne L; Rupprecht, Charles E; Wall, Debra K

    2007-01-01

    Twenty-four adult striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis) were administered the raccoon product formulation of Rabies Vaccine, Live Vaccinia-Vectored (Raboral V-RG, Merial Limited, Athens, Georgia, USA), either by oral instillation or in vaccine-filled coated sachets either as single or multiple doses. A control group remained unvaccinated. Twenty-three of the skunks were challenged 116 days postvaccination with rabies virus (skunk isolate). Six of six naive skunks succumbed to challenge. Four of six skunks that received the vaccine by oral instillation survived challenge. The skunks that did not survive failed to seroconvert following vaccination. None of the skunks that accepted multiple doses of the vaccine offered in coated sachets survived challenge, nor were rabies virus-neutralizing antibodies (VNAs) detected in the sera. Likewise, none of the five skunks ingesting a single sachet developed VNA against rabies. However, in this group one skunk did survive rabies challenge. This preliminary study showed that the vaccinia-vectored oral rabies vaccine Raboral V-RG, as formulated for use in raccoons, is capable of protecting a percentage of skunks against rabies. However, although the fishmeal-coated sachets were readily consumed, subsequent challenge of these animals revealed poor vaccine delivery efficiency.

  12. Advantages and challenges of microfluidic cell culture in polydimethylsiloxane devices.

    PubMed

    Halldorsson, Skarphedinn; Lucumi, Edinson; Gómez-Sjöberg, Rafael; Fleming, Ronan M T

    2015-01-15

    Culture of cells using various microfluidic devices is becoming more common within experimental cell biology. At the same time, a technological radiation of microfluidic cell culture device designs is currently in progress. Ultimately, the utility of microfluidic cell culture will be determined by its capacity to permit new insights into cellular function. Especially insights that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to obtain with macroscopic cell culture in traditional polystyrene dishes, flasks or well-plates. Many decades of heuristic optimization have gone into perfecting conventional cell culture devices and protocols. In comparison, even for the most commonly used microfluidic cell culture devices, such as those fabricated from polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), collective understanding of the differences in cellular behavior between microfluidic and macroscopic culture is still developing. Moving in vitro culture from macroscopic culture to PDMS based devices can come with unforeseen challenges. Changes in device material, surface coating, cell number per unit surface area or per unit media volume may all affect the outcome of otherwise standard protocols. In this review, we outline some of the advantages and challenges that may accompany a transition from macroscopic to microfluidic cell culture. We focus on decisive factors that distinguish macroscopic from microfluidic cell culture to encourage a reconsideration of how macroscopic cell culture principles might apply to microfluidic cell culture.

  13. Inoculation of Balb/c mice with live attenuated tachyzoites protects against a lethal challenge of Neospora caninum.

    PubMed

    Bartley, P M; Wright, S; Chianini, F; Buxton, D; Innes, E A

    2008-01-01

    Neospora caninum tachyzoites attenuated through passage in tissue culture were tested for their ability to induce protective immunity against a lethal challenge dose of parasites. Balb/c mice were each inoculated with either 1x10(6) live virulent tachyzoites (Group 1) or 1x10(6) live attenuated tachyzoites (Group 2), while (Group 3) received a control inoculum. All mice were each challenged 28 days later with 5x10(6) virulent parasites. Histopathological lesions in the brains including necrosis and microgliosis were observed following post-mortem on day 28 post-challenge (p.c.) in 71% of Group 1 and 56% of Group 2. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) of these lesions showed tachyzoites and Neospora antigens to be associated with moderate brain lesions in 17% of Group 1, while in 11% of Group 2 N. caninum tissue cysts were detected, but these were not associated with lesions, Parasite DNA was detected by PCR in the brains of 86% of mice in Group 1 and 56% of mice in Group 2. Following challenge the mice in Group 3 showed high morbidity and 100% mortality within 17 days p.c. Positive IHC for N. caninum was seen in 88% of the Group 3 mice and parasite DNA was detected in all brain samples. This study shows that it is possible to protect against a lethal challenge of N. caninum through inoculation with attenuated or virulent tachyzoites. However, more severe pathology developed in mice initially inoculated with virulent parasites following a secondary challenge, compared to mice initially inoculated with attenuated parasites.

  14. Mechanics of living cells measured by laser tracking microrheology.

    PubMed Central

    Yamada, S; Wirtz, D; Kuo, S C

    2000-01-01

    To establish laser-tracking microrheology (LTM) as a new technique for quantifying cytoskeletal mechanics, we measure viscoelastic moduli with wide bandwidth (5 decades) within living cells. With the first subcellular measurements of viscoelastic phase angles, LTM provides estimates of solid versus liquid behavior at different frequencies. In LTM, the viscoelastic shear moduli are inferred from the Brownian motion of particles embedded in the cytoskeletal network. Custom laser optoelectronics provide sub-nanometer and near-microsecond resolution of particle trajectories. The kidney epithelial cell line, COS7, has numerous spherical lipid-storage granules that are ideal probes for noninvasive LTM. Although most granules are percolating through perinuclear spaces, a subset of perinuclear granules is embedded in dense viscoelastic cytoplasm. Over all time scales embedded particles exhibit subdiffusive behavior and are not merely tethered by molecular motors. At low frequencies, lamellar regions (820 +/- 520 dyne/cm(2)) are more rigid than viscoelastic perinuclear regions (330 +/- 250 dyne/cm(2), p < 0.0001), but spectra converge at high frequencies. Although the actin-disrupting agent, latrunculin A, softens and liquefies lamellae, physiological levels of F-actin, alone (11 +/- 1.2 dyne/cm(2)) are approximately 70-fold softer than lamellae. Therefore, F-actin is necessary for lamellae mechanics, but not sufficient. Furthermore, in time-lapse of apparently quiescent cells, individual lamellar granules can show approximately 4-fold changes in moduli that last >10 s. Over a broad range of frequencies (0.1-30, 000 rad/s), LTM provides a unique ability to noninvasively quantify dynamic, local changes in cell viscoelasticity. PMID:10733956

  15. Understanding the Lives and Challenges of Women in Poverty after TANF.

    PubMed

    Hildebrandt, Eugenie

    2016-08-01

    Welfare Reform has caused a dramatic change in the lives and health of single mothers living in poverty. This qualitative study explored the health and socioeconomic lives of 22 community-dwelling women in poverty in the years after they were terminated from the current work-based welfare program intended to move women from welfare to work and independence. The instruments were a semistructured interview guide, the HANES General Well-Being Schedule, and a demographic data form. Data were analyzed using multistage narrative analysis and descriptive statistics. These primary source data showed participants had multiple barriers that precede or follow poverty. Their voices of how they survive are a rich source of data to assist providers and policy makers in devising evidence-based solutions for reducing poverty in America.

  16. Complementarity of PALM and SOFI for super-resolution live-cell imaging of focal adhesions

    PubMed Central

    Deschout, Hendrik; Lukes, Tomas; Sharipov, Azat; Szlag, Daniel; Feletti, Lely; Vandenberg, Wim; Dedecker, Peter; Hofkens, Johan; Leutenegger, Marcel; Lasser, Theo; Radenovic, Aleksandra

    2016-01-01

    Live-cell imaging of focal adhesions requires a sufficiently high temporal resolution, which remains a challenge for super-resolution microscopy. Here we address this important issue by combining photoactivated localization microscopy (PALM) with super-resolution optical fluctuation imaging (SOFI). Using simulations and fixed-cell focal adhesion images, we investigate the complementarity between PALM and SOFI in terms of spatial and temporal resolution. This PALM-SOFI framework is used to image focal adhesions in living cells, while obtaining a temporal resolution below 10 s. We visualize the dynamics of focal adhesions, and reveal local mean velocities around 190 nm min−1. The complementarity of PALM and SOFI is assessed in detail with a methodology that integrates a resolution and signal-to-noise metric. This PALM and SOFI concept provides an enlarged quantitative imaging framework, allowing unprecedented functional exploration of focal adhesions through the estimation of molecular parameters such as fluorophore densities and photoactivation or photoswitching kinetics. PMID:27991512

  17. Challenges and resilience in the lives of urban, multiracial adults: an instrument development study.

    PubMed

    Salahuddin, Nazish M; O'Brien, Karen M

    2011-10-01

    Multiracial Americans represent a rapidly growing population (Shih & Sanchez, 2009); however, very little is known about the types of challenges and resilience experienced by these individuals. To date, few psychological measures have been created specifically to investigate the experiences of multiracial people. This article describes 2 studies focused on the development and psychometric properties of the Multiracial Challenges and Resilience Scale (MCRS). The MCRS was developed using a nationwide Internet sample of urban, multiracial adults. Exploratory factor analyses revealed 4 Challenge factors (Others' Surprise and Disbelief Regarding Racial Heritage, Lack of Family Acceptance, Multiracial Discrimination, and Challenges With Racial Identity) and 2 Resilience factors (Appreciation of Human Differences and Multiracial Pride). A confirmatory factor analysis with data from a second sample provided support for the stability of this factor structure. The reliability and validity of the measure, implications of these findings, and suggestions for future research are discussed.

  18. Live cell imaging of phosphoinositide dynamics during Legionella infection.

    PubMed

    Weber, Stephen; Hilbi, Hubert

    2014-01-01

    The "accidental" pathogen Legionella pneumophila replicates intracellularly in a distinct compartment, the Legionella-containing vacuole (LCV). To form this specific pathogen vacuole, the bacteria translocate via the Icm/Dot type IV secretion system approximately 300 different effector proteins into the host cell. Several of these secreted effectors anchor to the cytoplasmic face of the LCV membrane by binding to phosphoinositide (PI) lipids. L. pneumophila thus largely controls the localization of secreted bacterial effectors and the recruitment of host factors to the LCV through the modulation of the vacuole membrane PI pattern. The LCV PI pattern and its dynamics can be studied in real-time using fluorescently labeled protein probes stably produced by the soil amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. In this chapter, we describe a protocol to (1) construct and handle amoeba model systems as a tool for observing PIs in live cell imaging, (2) capture rapid changes in membrane PI patterning during uptake events, and (3) observe the dynamics of LCV PIs over the course of a Legionella infection.

  19. Visualization of mycobacterial membrane dynamics in live cells

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Mycobacteria are endowed with a highly impermeable mycomembrane that confers intrinsic resistance to many antibiotics. Several unique mycomembrane glycolipids have been isolated and structurally characterized, but the underlying organization and dynamics of glycolipids within the cell envelope remain poorly understood. We report here a study of mycomembrane dynamics that was enabled by trehalose–fluorophore conjugates capable of labeling trehalose glycolipids in live actinomycetes. We identified fluorescein–trehalose analogues that are metabolically incorporated into the trehalose mycolates of representative Mycobacterium, Corynebacterium, Nocardia, and Rhodococcus species. Using these probes, we studied the mobilities of labeled glycolipids by time-lapse microscopy and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching experiments and found that mycomembrane fluidity varies widely across species and correlates with mycolic acid structure. Finally, we discovered that treatment of mycobacteria with ethambutol, a front-line tuberculosis (TB) drug, significantly increases mycomembrane fluidity. These findings enhance our understanding of mycobacterial cell envelope structure and dynamics and have implications for development of TB drug cocktails. PMID:28075574

  20. Water Dynamics in Living Cells and Tumor Cell Migration in Confined Microenvironments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Sean

    More than 70% of the total mass in living cells is water. In most biological scenarios water serves as a passive medium responsible for solvation and proper functioning of proteins. However, it has been long recognized that there are situations where dynamic transport of water in cells is important. First, cells actively transport water in order to maintain its volume, and because cell volume directly influences cell shape and internal hydrostatic pressure, it is a critical aspect of cell mechanics. Furthermore, cell volume is coupled to protein synthesis which ultimately determines the cell size. Therefore water transport and cell volume dynamics ultimately impact cell growth and division. Second, epithelial cells in organs such as the eye and kidney actively transport water across the cell membrane and the epithelial layer. Indeed, water channels such as aquaporins increase water permeability of the membrane and facilitate this transport. Recent, we have shown that in confined microenvironments, active transport of water is responsible for actin-independent cell movement in confined spaces, especially for cancer cells. These results suggest that cells actively control its water content. The active regulation of water content is a crucial aspect of cell dynamics. We will discuss a theoretical model of cell pressure/volume control. Implications of this model for active cell dynamics in multi-cellular epithelial sheets will be discussed.

  1. Direct metabolomics for plant cells by live single-cell mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Takashi; Matsuda, Shuichi; Tejedor, Mónica Lorenzo; Esaki, Tsuyoshi; Sakane, Iwao; Mizuno, Hajime; Tsuyama, Naohiro; Masujima, Tsutomu

    2015-09-01

    Live single-cell mass spectrometry (live MS) provides a mass spectrum that shows thousands of metabolite peaks from a single live plant cell within minutes. By using an optical microscope, a cell is chosen for analysis and a metal-coated nanospray microcapillary tip is used to remove the cell's contents. After adding a microliter of ionization solvent to the opposite end of the tip, the trapped contents are directly fed into the mass spectrometer by applying a high voltage between the tip and the inlet port of the spectrometer to induce nanospray ionization. Proteins are not detected because of insufficient sensitivity. Metabolite peaks are identified by exact mass or tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) analysis, and isomers can be separated by combining live MS with ion-mobility separation. By using this approach, spectra can be acquired in 10 min. In combination with metabolic maps and/or molecular databases, the data can be annotated into metabolic pathways; the data analysis takes 30 min to 4 h, depending on the MS/MS data availability from databases. This method enables the analysis of a number of metabolites from a single cell with rapid sampling at sub-attomolar-level sensitivity.

  2. The Impact of Challenging Student Behaviour upon Teachers' Lives in a Secondary School: Teachers' Perceptions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Axup, Tina; Gersch, Irvine

    2008-01-01

    In this article, Tina Axup, an educational psychologist working in Southend-on-Sea, and Irvine Gersch, director of educational and child psychology programmes at the University of East London, describe a small-scale study of teachers' attitudes regarding the impact of student behaviour on their professional lives. Anecdotal evidence within a local…

  3. New Television Documentary Underscores Challenges Faced by Adults Living with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Exceptional Parent, 2011

    2011-01-01

    Over the next 10 to 15 years, an estimated 800,000 children with autism will age out of their school systems and look to state and federal governments for support services and resources to meet their many needs. "Autism: Coming of Age" provides an inside look at the lives of three adults with autism and their families. The film delves into the…

  4. Roles, Responsibilities, Challenges, and Rewards: The Lived Experience of ESL Department Chairs in Community Colleges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lam, Chin

    2014-01-01

    This study addresses the lived experience of ESL department chairs in California community colleges. It adds to existing literature that aims to support these individuals who are serving in critical roles in institutions of higher education. Using phenomenological methods, four ESL department chairs were interviewed to explore their journeys…

  5. Is My World Getting Smaller? The Challenges of Living with Vision Loss

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berger, Sue

    2012-01-01

    Introduction: Vision loss influences both basic and instrumental activities of daily living. There is limited information, however, on the relationship between vision loss and leisure activities. The research presented here was part of a larger study that aimed to understand the importance of participation in leisure activities for those with…

  6. Potential and limitations of microscopy and Raman spectroscopy for live-cell analysis of 3D cell cultures.

    PubMed

    Charwat, Verena; Schütze, Karin; Holnthoner, Wolfgang; Lavrentieva, Antonina; Gangnus, Rainer; Hofbauer, Pablo; Hoffmann, Claudia; Angres, Brigitte; Kasper, Cornelia

    2015-07-10

    Today highly complex 3D cell culture formats that closely mimic the in vivo situation are increasingly available. Despite their wide use, the development of analytical methods and tools that can work within the depth of 3D-tissue constructs lags behind. In order to get the most information from a 3D cell sample, adequate and reliable assays are required. However, the majority of tools and methods used today have been originally designed for 2D cell cultures and translation to a 3D environment is in general not trivial. Ideally, an analytical method should be non-invasive and allow for repeated observation of living cells in order to detect dynamic changes in individual cells within the 3D cell culture. Although well-established laser confocal microscopy can be used for these purposes, this technique has serious limitations including penetration depth and availability. Focusing on two relevant analytical methods for live-cell monitoring, we discuss the current challenges of analyzing living 3D samples: microscopy, which is the most widely used technology to observe and examine cell cultures, has been successfully adapted for 3D samples by recording of so-called "z-stacks". However the required equipment is generally very expensive and therefore access is often limited. Consequently alternative and less advanced approaches are often applied that cannot capture the full structural complexity of a 3D sample. Similarly, image analysis tools for quantification of microscopic images range from highly specialized and costly to simplified and inexpensive. Depending on the actual sample composition and scientific question the best approach needs to be assessed individually. Another more recently introduced technology for non-invasive cell analysis is Raman micro-spectroscopy. It enables label-free identification of cellular metabolic changes with high sensitivity and has already been successful applied to 2D and 3D cell cultures. However, its future significance for cell

  7. Multifunctional "smart" particles engineered from live immunocytes: toward capture and release of cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chao; Yang, Gao; Ha, Qing; Meng, Jinxin; Wang, Shutao

    2015-01-14

    Multifunctional "smart" particles with magnetic, topographic, cell-targeting, and stimulus-responsive properties are obtained using a "live template" strategy. These particles exhibit improved efficiency in capture of target cancer cells by introducing synergistic topographic interactions, and enable the release of captured cells with high viability via reduction of disulfide bonds. Diverse multifunctional particles can be designed using the "live template" strategy.

  8. Dicer Regulates the Balance of Short-Lived Effector and Long-Lived Memory CD8 T Cell Lineages

    PubMed Central

    Baumann, Florian M.; Yuzefpolskiy, Yevgeniy; Sarkar, Surojit; Kalia, Vandana

    2016-01-01

    MicroRNAs constitute a major post-transcriptional mechanism for controlling protein expression, and are emerging as key regulators during T cell development and function. Recent reports of augmented CD8 T cell activation and effector differentiation, and aberrant migratory properties upon ablation of Dicer/miRNAs in naïve cells have established a regulatory role of miRNAs during priming. Whether miRNAs continue to exert similar functions or are dispensable during later stages of CD8 T cell expansion and memory differentiation remains unclear. Here, we report a critical role of Dicer/miRNAs in regulating the balance of long-lived memory and short-lived terminal effector fates during the post-priming stages when CD8 T cells undergo clonal expansion to generate a large cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) pool and subsequently differentiate into a quiescent memory state. Conditional ablation of Dicer/miRNAs in early effector CD8 T cells following optimal activation and expression of granzyme B, using unique dicerfl/fl gzmb-cre mice, led to a strikingly diminished peak effector size relative to wild-type antigen-specific cells in the same infectious milieu. Diminished expansion of Dicer-ablated CD8 T cells was associated with lack of sustained antigen-driven proliferation and reduced accumulation of short-lived effector cells. Additionally, Dicer-ablated CD8 T cells exhibited more pronounced contraction after pathogen clearance and comprised a significantly smaller proportion of the memory pool, despite significantly higher proportions of CD127Hi memory precursors at the effector peak. Combined with previous reports of dynamic changes in miRNA expression as CD8 T cells differentiate from naïve to effector and memory states, these findings support distinct stage-specific roles of miRNA-dependent gene regulation during CD8 T cell differentiation. PMID:27627450

  9. Synthetic biology of minimal living cells: primitive cell models and semi-synthetic cells.

    PubMed

    Stano, Pasquale

    2010-09-01

    This article summarizes a contribution presented at the ESF 2009 Synthetic Biology focused on the concept of the minimal requirement for life and on the issue of constructive (synthetic) approaches in biological research. The attempts to define minimal life within the framework of autopoietic theory are firstly described, and a short report on the development of autopoietic chemical systems based on fatty acid vesicles, which are relevant as primitive cell models is given. These studies can be used as a starting point for the construction of more complex systems, firstly being inspired by possible origins of life scenarioes (and therefore by considering primitive functions), then by considering an approach based on modern biomacromolecular-encoded functions. At this aim, semi-synthetic minimal cells are defined as those man-made vesicle-based systems that are composed of the minimal number of genes, proteins, biomolecules and which can be defined as living. Recent achievements on minimal sized semi-synthetic cells are then discussed, and the kind of information obtained is recognized as being distinctively derived by a constructive approach. Synthetic biology is therefore a fundamental tool for gaining basic knowledge about biosystems, and it should not be confined at all to the engineering side.

  10. Synthetic biology of minimal living cells: primitive cell models and semi-synthetic cells

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    This article summarizes a contribution presented at the ESF 2009 Synthetic Biology focused on the concept of the minimal requirement for life and on the issue of constructive (synthetic) approaches in biological research. The attempts to define minimal life within the framework of autopoietic theory are firstly described, and a short report on the development of autopoietic chemical systems based on fatty acid vesicles, which are relevant as primitive cell models is given. These studies can be used as a starting point for the construction of more complex systems, firstly being inspired by possible origins of life scenarioes (and therefore by considering primitive functions), then by considering an approach based on modern biomacromolecular-encoded functions. At this aim, semi-synthetic minimal cells are defined as those man-made vesicle-based systems that are composed of the minimal number of genes, proteins, biomolecules and which can be defined as living. Recent achievements on minimal sized semi-synthetic cells are then discussed, and the kind of information obtained is recognized as being distinctively derived by a constructive approach. Synthetic biology is therefore a fundamental tool for gaining basic knowledge about biosystems, and it should not be confined at all to the engineering side. PMID:21886680

  11. Merkel cells are long-lived cells whose production is stimulated by skin injury.

    PubMed

    Wright, Margaret C; Logan, Gregory J; Bolock, Alexa M; Kubicki, Adam C; Hemphill, Julie A; Sanders, Timothy A; Maricich, Stephen M

    2017-02-01

    Mechanosensitive Merkel cells are thought to have finite lifespans, but controversy surrounds the frequency of their replacement and which precursor cells maintain the population. We found by embryonic EdU administration that Merkel cells undergo terminal cell division in late embryogenesis and survive long into adulthood. We also found that new Merkel cells are produced infrequently during normal skin homeostasis and that their numbers do not change during natural or induced hair cycles. In contrast, live imaging and EdU experiments showed that mild mechanical injury produced by skin shaving dramatically increases Merkel cell production. We confirmed with genetic cell ablation and fate-mapping experiments that new touch dome Merkel cells in adult mice arise from touch dome keratinocytes. Together, these independent lines of evidence show that Merkel cells in adult mice are long-lived, are replaced rarely during normal adult skin homeostasis, and that their production can be induced by repeated shaving. These results have profound implications for understanding sensory neurobiology and human diseases such as Merkel cell carcinoma.

  12. The unforeseen challenge: from genotype-to-phenotype in cell populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braun, Erez

    2015-02-01

    Biological cells present a paradox, in that they show simultaneous stability and flexibility, allowing them to adapt to new environments and to evolve over time. The emergence of stable cell states depends on genotype-to-phenotype associations, which essentially reflect the organization of gene regulatory modes. The view taken here is that cell-state organization is a dynamical process in which the molecular disorder manifests itself in a macroscopic order. The genome does not determine the ordered cell state; rather, it participates in this process by providing a set of constraints on the spectrum of regulatory modes, analogous to boundary conditions in physical dynamical systems. We have developed an experimental framework, in which cell populations are exposed to unforeseen challenges; novel perturbations they had not encountered before along their evolutionary history. This approach allows an unbiased view of cell dynamics, uncovering the potential of cells to evolve and develop adapted stable states. In the last decade, our experiments have revealed a coherent set of observations within this framework, painting a picture of the living cell that in many ways is not aligned with the conventional one. Of particular importance here, is our finding that adaptation of cell-state organization is essentially an efficient exploratory dynamical process rather than one founded on random mutations. Based on our framework, a set of concepts underlying cell-state organization—exploration evolving by global, non-specific, dynamics of gene activity—is presented here. These concepts have significant consequences for our understanding of the emergence and stabilization of a cell phenotype in diverse biological contexts. Their implications are discussed for three major areas of biological inquiry: evolution, cell differentiation and cancer. There is currently no unified theoretical framework encompassing the emergence of order, a stable state, in the living cell. Hopefully

  13. The Possible Impact of Teachers and School Nurses on the Lives of Children Living with Sickle Cell Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knight-Madden, Jennifer M.; Lewis, Norma; Tyson, Esther; Reid, Marvin E.; MooSang, Michelle

    2011-01-01

    It is well recognized that for people living with a chronic disease, the largest impact on preserved health may come from persons other than medical professionals. This may be especially true for children for whom the actions of parents and school professionals have significant importance. Sickle cell disease (SCD) is one such disease. Although…

  14. The live attenuated dengue vaccine TV003 elicits complete protection against dengue in a human challenge model.

    PubMed

    Kirkpatrick, Beth D; Whitehead, Stephen S; Pierce, Kristen K; Tibery, Cecilia M; Grier, Palmtama L; Hynes, Noreen A; Larsson, Catherine J; Sabundayo, Beulah P; Talaat, Kawsar R; Janiak, Anna; Carmolli, Marya P; Luke, Catherine J; Diehl, Sean A; Durbin, Anna P

    2016-03-16

    A dengue human challenge model can be an important tool to identify candidate dengue vaccines that should be further evaluated in large efficacy trials in endemic areas. Dengue is responsible for about 390 million infections annually. Protective efficacy results for the most advanced dengue vaccine candidate (CYD) were disappointing despite its ability to induce neutralizing antibodies against all four dengue virus (DENV) serotypes. TV003 is a live attenuated tetravalent DENV vaccine currently in phase 2 evaluation. To better assess the protective efficacy of TV003, a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in which recipients of TV003 or placebo were challenged 6 months later with a DENV-2 strain, rDEN2Δ30, was conducted. The primary endpoint of the trial was protection against dengue infection, defined as rDEN2Δ30 viremia. Secondary endpoints were protection against rash and neutropenia. All 21 recipients of TV003 who were challenged with rDEN2Δ30 were protected from infection with rDEN2Δ30. None developed viremia, rash, or neutropenia after challenge. In contrast, 100% of the 20 placebo recipients who were challenged with rDEN2Δ30 developed viremia, 80% developed rash, and 20% developed neutropenia. TV003 induced complete protection against challenge with rDEN2Δ30 administered 6 months after vaccination. TV003 will be further evaluated in dengue-endemic areas. The controlled dengue human challenge model can accelerate vaccine development by evaluating the protection afforded by the vaccine, thereby eliminating poor candidates from further consideration before the initiation of large efficacy trials.

  15. Raman micro-spectroscopy study of living SH-SY5Y cells adhering on different substrates.

    PubMed

    Caponi, S; Mattana, S; Ricci, M; Sagini, K; Urbanelli, L; Sassi, P; Morresi, A; Emiliani, C; Dalla Serra, M; Iannotta, S; Musio, C; Fioretto, D

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we test the ability of Raman micro-spectroscopy and Raman mapping to investigate the status of cells grown in adhesion on different substrates. The spectra of immortalized SH-SY5Y cells, grown on silicon and on metallic substrates are compared with those obtained for the same type of cells adhering on organic polyaniline (PANI), a memristive substrate chosen to achieve a living bio-hybrid system. Raman spectra give information on the status of the single cell, its local biochemical composition, and on the modifications induced by the substrate interaction. The good agreement between Raman spectra collected from cells adhering on different substrates confirms that the PANI, besides allowing the cell growth, doesn't strongly affect the general biochemical properties of the cell. The investigation of the cellular state in a label free condition is challenging and the obtained results confirm the Raman ability to achieve this information.

  16. Live-cell imaging study of mitochondrial morphology in mammalian cells exposed to X-rays.

    PubMed

    Noguchi, M; Kanari, Y; Yokoya, A; Narita, A; Fujii, K

    2015-09-01

    Morphological changes in mitochondria induced by X-irradiation in normal murine mammary gland cells were studied with a live-cell microscopic imaging technique. Mitochondria were visualised by staining with a specific fluorescent probe in the cells, which express fluorescent ubiquitination-based cell-cycle indicator 2 (Fucci2) probes to visualise cell cycle. In unirradiated cells, the number of cells with fragmented mitochondria was about 20 % of the total cells through observation period (96 h). In irradiated cells, the population with fragmented mitochondria significantly increased depending on the absorbed dose. Particularly, for 8 Gy irradiation, the accumulation of fragmentation persists even in the cells whose cell cycle came to a stand (80 % in G1 (G0-like) phase). The fraction reached to a maximum at 96 h after irradiation. The kinetics of the fraction with fragmented mitochondria was similar to that for cells in S/G2/M phase (20 %) through the observation period (120 h). The evidences show that, in irradiated cells, some signals are continually released from a nucleus or cytoplasm even in the G0-like cells to operate some sort of protein machineries involved in mitochondrial fission. It is inferred that this delayed mitochondrial fragmentation is strongly related to their dysfunction, and hence might modulate radiobiological effects such as mutation or cell death.

  17. Challenges and Resilience in the Lives of Urban, Multiracial Adults: An Instrument Development Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salahuddin, Nazish M.; O'Brien, Karen M.

    2011-01-01

    Multiracial Americans represent a rapidly growing population (Shih & Sanchez, 2009); however, very little is known about the types of challenges and resilience experienced by these individuals. To date, few psychological measures have been created specifically to investigate the experiences of multiracial people. This article describes 2…

  18. Living the Future Now: "Race" and Challenges of Transformation in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Erasmus, Z. E.

    2006-01-01

    Drawing on research among medical students at the University of Cape Town's Faculty of Health Sciences, this article explores two questions: How do students and staff work with "race" in their relations to one another? What challenges do these relations pose for transformation? Data was gathered using in-depth interviews with forty-one…

  19. Responding to Leadership Challenges in U.S. Catholic Schools: The Lived Reality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cook, Timothy J.

    2008-01-01

    The most pressing challenges facing American Catholic educational leaders today are funding, Catholic identity, and leadership. Funding is the most pressing issue and it involves recruiting and retaining teachers, balancing affordability with quality, and justifying the worth of Catholic schools. Catholic identity issues include reconciling the…

  20. Toward Mapping Daily Challenges of Living with ADHD: Maternal and Child Perspectives Using Electronic Diaries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Whalen, Carol K.; Henker, Barbara; Jamner, Larry D.; Ishikawa, Sharon S.; Floro, Joshua N.; Swindle, Ralph; Perwien, Amy R.; Johnston, Joseph A.

    2006-01-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has an impact on the family as well as the affected child. This study developed and tested an electronic diary for mapping the challenges of everyday family life in a sample of children with ADHD being treated with pharmacotherapy. Across 7 days, mothers and children (27 ADHD; 25 non-ADHD)…

  1. Living and Learning in Rural Schools and Communities. A Report to the Annenberg Rural Challenge.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bryant, Miles; Canniff, Julie; Casey, Mary; Christian, Scott; Cochrane, Candace; Fontaine, Carla; Landry, Richard; Leiter, Bob; Shirley, Dennis; Sosniak, Lauren; Stafanakis, Evangeline; Titone, Connie; Ulichny, Polly; Williams, Ben; Wood, Doug

    The Annenberg Rural Challenge represents a large national effort to transform rural schools and communities. Among its dominant themes are that students should come to know their local communities well, that communities should see schools and students as critical assets, and that communities and schools need to become more integrated. As part of a…

  2. Live Cell Imaging of the Endocytosis and the Intracellular Trafficking of Multifunctional Lipid Nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Tieqiao; Danthi, S. N.; Xie, Jianwu; Hu, Dehong; Lu, H. Peter; Li, King H.

    2006-12-01

    Artificial lipid nanoparticles have drawn great attention due to their potential in medicine. Linked with targeting ligands, they can be used as probes and/or gene delivery vectors for specific types of target cells. Therefore, they are very promising agents in early detection, diagnosis and treatment of cancers and other genetic diseases. However, there are several barriers blocking the applications. Controlling the cellular uptake of the lipid nanoparticles is an important technical challenge to overcome. Understanding the mechanism of the endocytosis and the following intracellular trafficking is very important for improving the design and therefore the efficiency as a drug delivery system. By using fluorescence microscopy methods, we studied the endocytosis of lipid nanoparticles by live M21 cells. The movements of the nanoparticles inside the cell were quantitatively characterized and classified based on the diffusion behavior. The trajectories of nanoparticles movement over the cell membrane revealed hop-diffusion behavior prior to the endocytosis. Fast movement in large steps is observed in intracellular trafficking and is attributed to active movement along microtubule. These observations help to understand the mechanism of the endocytosis and the pathway of the particles in cells.

  3. Towards programming languages for genetic engineering of living cells.

    PubMed

    Pedersen, Michael; Phillips, Andrew

    2009-08-06

    Synthetic biology aims at producing novel biological systems to carry out some desired and well-defined functions. An ultimate dream is to design these systems at a high level of abstraction using engineering-based tools and programming languages, press a button, and have the design translated to DNA sequences that can be synthesized and put to work in living cells. We introduce such a programming language, which allows logical interactions between potentially undetermined proteins and genes to be expressed in a modular manner. Programs can be translated by a compiler into sequences of standard biological parts, a process that relies on logic programming and prototype databases that contain known biological parts and protein interactions. Programs can also be translated to reactions, allowing simulations to be carried out. While current limitations on available data prevent full use of the language in practical applications, the language can be used to develop formal models of synthetic systems, which are otherwise often presented by informal notations. The language can also serve as a concrete proposal on which future language designs can be discussed, and can help to guide the emerging standard of biological parts which so far has focused on biological, rather than logical, properties of parts.

  4. Quantitative Measurement of Protein Relocalization in Live Cells

    PubMed Central

    Bush, Alan; Colman-Lerner, Alejandro

    2013-01-01

    Microscope cytometry provides a powerful means to study signaling in live cells. Here we present a quantitative method to measure protein relocalization over time, which reports the absolute fraction of a tagged protein in each compartment. Using this method, we studied an essential step in the early propagation of the pheromone signal in Saccharomyces cerevisiae: recruitment to the membrane of the scaffold Ste5 by activated Gβγ dimers. We found that the dose response of Ste5 recruitment is graded (EC50 = 0.44 ± 0.08 nM, Hill coefficient = 0.8 ± 0.1). Then, we determined the effective dissociation constant (Kde) between Ste5 and membrane sites during the first few minutes when the negative feedback from the MAPK Fus3 is first activated. Kde changed during the first minutes from a high affinity of <0.65 nM to a steady-state value of 17 ± 9 nM. During the same period, the total number of binding sites decreased slightly, from 1940 ± 150 to 1400 ± 200. This work shows how careful quantification of a protein relocalization dynamic can give insight into the regulation mechanisms of a biological system. PMID:23442923

  5. Transcription factor network reconstruction using the living cell array.

    PubMed

    Yang, Eric; Yarmush, Martin L; Androulakis, Ioannis P

    2009-02-07

    The objective of identifying transcriptional regulatory networks is to provide insights as to what governs an organism's long term response to external stimuli. We explore the coupling of the living cell array (LCA), a novel microfluidics device which utilizes fluorescence levels as a surrogate for transcription factor activity with reverse Euler deconvolution (RED) a computational technique proposed in this work to decipher the dynamics of the interactions. It is hypothesized that these two methods will allow us to first assess the underlying network architecture associated with the transcription factor network as well as specific mechanistic consequences of transcription factor activation such as receptor dimerization or tolerance. The overall approach identifies evidence of time-lagged response which may be indicative of mechanisms such as receptor dimerization, tolerance mechanisms which are evidence of various receptor mediated dynamics, and feedback loops which regulate the response of an organism to changing environmental conditions. Furthermore, through the exploration of multiple network architectures, we were able to obtain insights as to the role each transcription factor plays in the overall response and their overall redundancy in the organism's response to external perturbations. Thus, the LCA along with the proposed analysis technique is a valuable tool for identifying the possible architectures and mechanisms underlying the transcriptional response.

  6. Mechanics of Cellulose Synthase Complexes in Living Plant Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zehfroosh, Nina; Liu, Derui; Ramos, Kieran P.; Yang, Xiaoli; Goldner, Lori S.; Baskin, Tobias I.

    The polymer cellulose is one of the major components of the world's biomass with unique and fascinating characteristics such as its high tensile strength, renewability, biodegradability, and biocompatibility. Because of these distinctive aspects, cellulose has been the subject of enormous scientific and industrial interest, yet there are still fundamental open questions about cellulose biosynthesis. Cellulose is synthesized by a complex of transmembrane proteins called ``Cellulose Synthase A'' (CESA) in the plasma membrane. Studying the dynamics and kinematics of the CESA complex will help reveal the mechanism of cellulose synthesis and permit the development and validation of models of CESA motility. To understand what drives these complexes through the cell membrane, we used total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (TIRFM) and variable angle epi-fluorescence microscopy to track individual, fluorescently-labeled CESA complexes as they move in the hypocotyl and root of living plants. A mean square displacement analysis will be applied to distinguish ballistic, diffusional, and other forms of motion. We report on the results of these tracking experiments. This work was funded by NSF/PHY-1205989.

  7. Dye-Doped Fluorescent Silica Nanoparticles for Live Cell and In Vivo Bioimaging

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Wen-Han; Hu, Xiao-Xiao; Zhang, Xiao-Bing

    2016-01-01

    The need for novel design strategies for fluorescent nanomaterials to improve our understanding of biological activities at the molecular level is increasing rapidly. Dye-doped fluorescent silica nanoparticles (SiNPs) emerge with great potential for developing fluorescence imaging techniques as a novel and ideal platform for the monitoring of living cells and the whole body. Organic dye-containing fluorescent SiNPs exhibit many advantages: they have excellent biocompatibility, are non-toxic, highly hydrophilic, optically transparent, size-tunable and easily modified with various biomolecules. The outer silica shell matrix protects fluorophores from outside chemical reaction factors and provides a hydrophilic shell for the insoluble nanoparticles, which enhances the photo-stability and biocompatibility of the organic fluorescent dyes. Here, we give a summary of the synthesis, characteristics and applications of fluorescent SiNPs for non-invasive fluorescence bioimaging in live cells and in vivo. Additionally, the challenges and perspectives of SiNPs are also discussed. We prospect that the further development of these nanoparticles will lead to an exciting breakthrough in the understanding of biological processes.

  8. De novo automated design of small RNA circuits for engineering synthetic riboregulation in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigo, Guillermo; Landrain, Thomas E.; Jaramillo, Alfonso

    2012-01-01

    A grand challenge in synthetic biology is to use our current knowledge of RNA science to perform the automatic engineering of completely synthetic sequences encoding functional RNAs in living cells. We report here a fully automated design methodology and experimental validation of synthetic RNA interaction circuits working in a cellular environment. The computational algorithm, based on a physicochemical model, produces novel RNA sequences by exploring the space of possible sequences compatible with predefined structures. We tested our methodology in Escherichia coli by designing several positive riboregulators with diverse structures and interaction models, suggesting that only the energy of formation and the activation energy (free energy barrier to overcome for initiating the hybridization reaction) are sufficient criteria to engineer RNA interaction and regulation in bacteria. The designed sequences exhibit nonsignificant similarity to any known noncoding RNA sequence. Our riboregulatory devices work independently and in combination with transcription regulation to create complex logic circuits. Our results demonstrate that a computational methodology based on first-principles can be used to engineer interacting RNAs with allosteric behavior in living cells. PMID:22949707

  9. Efficient selective breeding of live oil-rich Euglena gracilis with fluorescence-activated cell sorting.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Koji; Suzuki, Hideyuki; Takeuchi, Takuto; Kazama, Yusuke; Mitra, Sharbanee; Abe, Tomoko; Goda, Keisuke; Suzuki, Kengo; Iwata, Osamu

    2016-05-23

    Euglena gracilis, a microalgal species of unicellular flagellate protists, has attracted much attention in both the industrial and academic sectors due to recent advances in the mass cultivation of E. gracilis that have enabled the cost-effective production of nutritional food and cosmetic commodities. In addition, it is known to produce paramylon (β-1,3-glucan in a crystalline form) as reserve polysaccharide and convert it to wax ester in hypoxic and anaerobic conditions-a promising feedstock for biodiesel and aviation biofuel. However, there remain a number of technical challenges to be solved before it can be deployed in the competitive fuel market. Here we present a method for efficient selective breeding of live oil-rich E. gracilis with fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). Specifically, the selective breeding method is a repetitive procedure for one-week heterotrophic cultivation, staining intracellular lipids with BODIPY(505/515), and FACS-based isolation of top 0.5% lipid-rich E. gracilis cells with high viability, after inducing mutation with Fe-ion irradiation to the wild type (WT). Consequently, we acquire a live, stable, lipid-rich E. gracilis mutant strain, named B1ZFeL, with 40% more lipid content on average than the WT. Our method paves the way for rapid, cost-effective, energy-efficient production of biofuel.

  10. An Improved Procedure for Subcellular Spatial Alignment during Live-Cell CLEM

    PubMed Central

    Padman, Benjamin S.; Bach, Markus; Ramm, Georg

    2014-01-01

    Live-cell correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM) offers unique insights into the ultrastructure of dynamic cellular processes. A critical and technically challenging part of CLEM is the 3-dimensional relocation of the intracellular region of interest during sample processing. We have developed a simple CLEM procedure that uses toner particles from a laser printer as orientation marks. This facilitates easy tracking of a region of interest even by eye throughout the whole procedure. Combined with subcellular fluorescence markers for the plasma membrane and nucleus, the toner particles allow for precise subcellular spatial alignment of the optical and electron microscopy data sets. The toner-based reference grid is printed and transferred onto a polymer film using a standard office printer and laminator. We have also designed a polymer film holder that is compatible with most inverted microscopes, and have validated our strategy by following the ultrastructure of mitochondria that were selectively photo-irradiated during live-cell microscopy. In summary, our inexpensive and robust CLEM procedure simplifies optical imaging, without limiting the choice of optical microscope. PMID:24755651

  11. Efficient selective breeding of live oil-rich Euglena gracilis with fluorescence-activated cell sorting

    PubMed Central

    Yamada, Koji; Suzuki, Hideyuki; Takeuchi, Takuto; Kazama, Yusuke; Mitra, Sharbanee; Abe, Tomoko; Goda, Keisuke; Suzuki, Kengo; Iwata, Osamu

    2016-01-01

    Euglena gracilis, a microalgal species of unicellular flagellate protists, has attracted much attention in both the industrial and academic sectors due to recent advances in the mass cultivation of E. gracilis that have enabled the cost-effective production of nutritional food and cosmetic commodities. In addition, it is known to produce paramylon (β-1,3-glucan in a crystalline form) as reserve polysaccharide and convert it to wax ester in hypoxic and anaerobic conditions–a promising feedstock for biodiesel and aviation biofuel. However, there remain a number of technical challenges to be solved before it can be deployed in the competitive fuel market. Here we present a method for efficient selective breeding of live oil-rich E. gracilis with fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). Specifically, the selective breeding method is a repetitive procedure for one-week heterotrophic cultivation, staining intracellular lipids with BODIPY505/515, and FACS-based isolation of top 0.5% lipid-rich E. gracilis cells with high viability, after inducing mutation with Fe-ion irradiation to the wild type (WT). Consequently, we acquire a live, stable, lipid-rich E. gracilis mutant strain, named B1ZFeL, with 40% more lipid content on average than the WT. Our method paves the way for rapid, cost-effective, energy-efficient production of biofuel. PMID:27212384

  12. Genetically modified T cells in cancer therapy: opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Sharpe, Michaela; Mount, Natalie

    2015-04-01

    Tumours use many strategies to evade the host immune response, including downregulation or weak immunogenicity of target antigens and creation of an immune-suppressive tumour environment. T cells play a key role in cell-mediated immunity and, recently, strategies to genetically modify T cells either through altering the specificity of the T cell receptor (TCR) or through introducing antibody-like recognition in chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) have made substantial advances. The potential of these approaches has been demonstrated in particular by the successful use of genetically modified T cells to treat B cell haematological malignancies in clinical trials. This clinical success is reflected in the growing number of strategic partnerships in this area that have attracted a high level of investment and involve large pharmaceutical organisations. Although our understanding of the factors that influence the safety and efficacy of these therapies has increased, challenges for bringing genetically modified T-cell immunotherapy to many patients with different tumour types remain. These challenges range from the selection of antigen targets and dealing with regulatory and safety issues to successfully navigating the routes to commercial development. However, the encouraging clinical data, the progress in the scientific understanding of tumour immunology and the improvements in the manufacture of cell products are all advancing the clinical translation of these important cellular immunotherapies.

  13. Immortality of cell lines: challenges and advantages of establishment.

    PubMed

    Maqsood, Muhammad Irfan; Matin, Maryam M; Bahrami, Ahmad Reza; Ghasroldasht, Mohammad M

    2013-10-01

    Cellular immortality happens upon impairment of cell-cycle checkpoint pathways (p53/p16/pRb), reactivation or up-regulation of telomerase enzyme, or upregulation of some oncogenes or oncoproteins leading to a higher rate of cell division.There are also some other factors and mechanisms involved in immortalisation, which need to be discovered. Immortalisation of cells derived from different sources and establishment of immortal cell lines has proven useful in understanding the molecular pathways governing cell developmental cascades in eukaryotic, especially human, cells. After the breakthrough of achieving the immortal cells and understanding their critical importance in the field of molecular biology, intense efforts have been dedicated to establish cell lines useful for elucidating the functions of telomerase, developmental lineage of progenitors, self-renewal potency, cellular transformation, differentiation patterns and some bioprocesses, like odontogenesis. Meanwhile, discovering the exact mechanisms of immortality, a major challenge for science yet, is believed to open new gateways toward understanding and treatment of cancer in the long term. This review summarises the methods involved in establishing immortality, its advantages and the challenges still being faced in this field.

  14. Cell-based therapy technology classifications and translational challenges

    PubMed Central

    Mount, Natalie M.; Ward, Stephen J.; Kefalas, Panos; Hyllner, Johan

    2015-01-01

    Cell therapies offer the promise of treating and altering the course of diseases which cannot be addressed adequately by existing pharmaceuticals. Cell therapies are a diverse group across cell types and therapeutic indications and have been an active area of research for many years but are now strongly emerging through translation and towards successful commercial development and patient access. In this article, we present a description of a classification of cell therapies on the basis of their underlying technologies rather than the more commonly used classification by cell type because the regulatory path and manufacturing solutions are often similar within a technology area due to the nature of the methods used. We analyse the progress of new cell therapies towards clinical translation, examine how they are addressing the clinical, regulatory, manufacturing and reimbursement requirements, describe some of the remaining challenges and provide perspectives on how the field may progress for the future. PMID:26416686

  15. Single-cell RNA-seq: advances and future challenges.

    PubMed

    Saliba, Antoine-Emmanuel; Westermann, Alexander J; Gorski, Stanislaw A; Vogel, Jörg

    2014-08-01

    Phenotypically identical cells can dramatically vary with respect to behavior during their lifespan and this variation is reflected in their molecular composition such as the transcriptomic landscape. Single-cell transcriptomics using next-generation transcript sequencing (RNA-seq) is now emerging as a powerful tool to profile cell-to-cell variability on a genomic scale. Its application has already greatly impacted our conceptual understanding of diverse biological processes with broad implications for both basic and clinical research. Different single-cell RNA-seq protocols have been introduced and are reviewed here-each one with its own strengths and current limitations. We further provide an overview of the biological questions single-cell RNA-seq has been used to address, the major findings obtained from such studies, and current challenges and expected future developments in this booming field.

  16. Single-cell RNA-seq: advances and future challenges

    PubMed Central

    Saliba, Antoine-Emmanuel; Westermann, Alexander J.; Gorski, Stanislaw A.; Vogel, Jörg

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypically identical cells can dramatically vary with respect to behavior during their lifespan and this variation is reflected in their molecular composition such as the transcriptomic landscape. Single-cell transcriptomics using next-generation transcript sequencing (RNA-seq) is now emerging as a powerful tool to profile cell-to-cell variability on a genomic scale. Its application has already greatly impacted our conceptual understanding of diverse biological processes with broad implications for both basic and clinical research. Different single-cell RNA-seq protocols have been introduced and are reviewed here—each one with its own strengths and current limitations. We further provide an overview of the biological questions single-cell RNA-seq has been used to address, the major findings obtained from such studies, and current challenges and expected future developments in this booming field. PMID:25053837

  17. A simple and stable auto focusing protocol for long multidimensional live cell microscopy.

    PubMed

    Wolf, F; Geley, S

    2006-01-01

    Focus maintenance is a challenging problem in multidimensional wide-field microscopy. Most automated microscopes use software algorithms, which are applied to z-sections of the object, to select for the plane with the best signal to noise ratio. When applied automatically in multidimensional imaging applications, auto focus routines significantly increase light exposure and can become cytotoxic if applied too frequently. In addition, automated focusing procedures can readily focus on unwanted high contrast objects. By labelling a defined position with a fluorescent marker, we were able to separate the focusing procedure from the actual image acquisition positions and therefore overcome some of the major drawbacks of routine auto focus procedures. To implement this method in a multidimensional acquisition experiment, we created a visual basic-based program, which is run prior to each image acquisition. This technique allows tight control of focus whilst keeping light toxicity in live cell imaging experiments to a minimum.

  18. "Molecular-Activity Painting": Switch-like, Light-Controlled Perturbations inside Living Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xi; Venkatachalapathy, Muthukumaran; Kamps, Dominic; Weigel, Simone; Kumar, Ravi; Orlich, Michael; Garrecht, Ruben; Hirtz, Michael; Niemeyer, Christof M; Wu, Yao-Wen; Dehmelt, Leif

    2017-03-29

    Acute subcellular protein targeting is a powerful tool to study biological networks. However, signaling at the plasma membrane is highly dynamic, making it difficult to study in space and time. In particular, sustained local control of molecular function is challenging owing to the lateral diffusion of plasma membrane targeted molecules. Herein we present "molecular-activity painting" (MAP), a novel technology which combines photoactivatable chemically induced dimerization (pCID) with immobilized artificial receptors. The immobilization of artificial receptors by surface-immobilized antibodies blocks lateral diffusion, enabling rapid and stable "painting" of signaling molecules and their activity at the plasma membrane with micrometer precision. Using this method, we show that painting of the RhoA-myosin activator GEF-H1 induces patterned acto-myosin contraction inside living cells.

  19. CD8 knockout mice are protected from challenge by vaccination with WR201, a live attenuated mutant of Brucella melitensis.

    PubMed

    Yingst, Samuel L; Izadjoo, Mina; Hoover, David L

    2013-01-01

    CD8+ T cells have been reported to play an important role in defense against B. abortus infection in mouse models. In the present report, we use CD8 knockout mice to further elucidate the role of these cells in protection from B. melitensis infection. Mice were immunized orally by administration of B. melitensis WR201, a purine auxotrophic attenuated vaccine strain, then challenged intranasally with B. melitensis 16M. In some experiments, persistence of WR201 in the spleens of CD8 knockout mice was slightly longer than that in the spleens of normal mice. However, development of anti-LPS serum antibody, antigen-induced production of γ-interferon (IFN-γ) by immune splenic lymphocytes, protection against intranasal challenge, and recovery of nonimmunized animals from intranasal challenge were similar between normal and knockout animals. Further, primary Brucella infection was not exacerbated in perforin knockout and Fas-deficient mice and these animals' anti-Brucella immune responses were indistinguishable from those of normal mice. These results indicate that CD8+ T cells do not play an essential role as either cytotoxic cells or IFN-γ producers, yet they do participate in a specific immune response to immunization and challenge in this murine model of B. melitensis infection.

  20. Efficacy of recombinant leukotoxin in protection against pneumonic challenge with live Pasteurella haemolytica A1.

    PubMed Central

    Conlon, J A; Shewen, P E; Lo, R Y

    1991-01-01

    The recombinant leukotoxin (rLKT) of the bacterium Pasteurella haemolytica A1 was examined for its ability to protect cattle from experimental challenge with logarithmic-phase P. haemolytica. Six different vaccines were utilized in the experiment: P. haemolytica culture supernatant, P. haemolytica culture supernatant enriched with rLKT, rLKT alone, P. haemolytica culture supernatant enriched with Escherichia coli supernatant not containing LKT, E. coli supernatant alone, and phosphate-buffered saline. rLKT alone showed no protective capacity against development of clinical signs of respiratory disease or against development of postmortem lung lesions after experimental challenge. It was, however, shown to enhance the efficacy of the culture supernatant vaccine and decrease clinical signs and pneumonic lesions. The complexity of protective immunity in this disease is emphasized in this study, and, although LKT is an important virulence factor of the organism, an immune response to LKT alone does not protect animals against disease. PMID:1987075

  1. Biofabrication and Bone Tissue Regeneration: Cell Source, Approaches, and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Orciani, Monia; Fini, Milena; Di Primio, Roberto; Mattioli-Belmonte, Monica

    2017-01-01

    The growing occurrence of bone disorders and the increase in aging population have resulted in the need for more effective therapies to meet this request. Bone tissue engineering strategies, by combining biomaterials, cells, and signaling factors, are seen as alternatives to conventional bone grafts for repairing or rebuilding bone defects. Indeed, skeletal tissue engineering has not yet achieved full translation into clinical practice because of several challenges. Bone biofabrication by additive manufacturing techniques may represent a possible solution, with its intrinsic capability for accuracy, reproducibility, and customization of scaffolds as well as cell and signaling molecule delivery. This review examines the existing research in bone biofabrication and the appropriate cells and factors selection for successful bone regeneration as well as limitations affecting these approaches. Challenges that need to be tackled with the highest priority are the obtainment of appropriate vascularized scaffolds with an accurate spatiotemporal biochemical and mechanical stimuli release, in order to improve osseointegration as well as osteogenesis. PMID:28386538

  2. Biofabrication and Bone Tissue Regeneration: Cell Source, Approaches, and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Orciani, Monia; Fini, Milena; Di Primio, Roberto; Mattioli-Belmonte, Monica

    2017-01-01

    The growing occurrence of bone disorders and the increase in aging population have resulted in the need for more effective therapies to meet this request. Bone tissue engineering strategies, by combining biomaterials, cells, and signaling factors, are seen as alternatives to conventional bone grafts for repairing or rebuilding bone defects. Indeed, skeletal tissue engineering has not yet achieved full translation into clinical practice because of several challenges. Bone biofabrication by additive manufacturing techniques may represent a possible solution, with its intrinsic capability for accuracy, reproducibility, and customization of scaffolds as well as cell and signaling molecule delivery. This review examines the existing research in bone biofabrication and the appropriate cells and factors selection for successful bone regeneration as well as limitations affecting these approaches. Challenges that need to be tackled with the highest priority are the obtainment of appropriate vascularized scaffolds with an accurate spatiotemporal biochemical and mechanical stimuli release, in order to improve osseointegration as well as osteogenesis.

  3. Visualizing stable features in live cell nucleus for evaluation of the cell global motion compensation.

    PubMed

    Sorokin, D V; Suchánková, J; Bártová, E; Matula, P

    2014-01-01

    The compensation of cell motion is an important step in single-particle tracking analysis of live cells. This step is required in most of the cases, since the movement of subcellular foci is superimposed by the movement and deformation of the cell, while only the local motion of the foci is important to be analysed. The cell motion and deformation compensation is usually performed by means of image registration. There are a number of approaches with different models and properties presented in the literature that perform cell image registration. However, the evaluation of the registration approach quality on real data is a tricky problem due to the fact that some stable features in the images with a priori no local motion are needed. In this paper we propose a methodology for creating live cell nuclei image sequences with stable features imposed. The features are defined using the regions of fluorescence bleaching invoked by the UV laser. Data with different deformations are acquired and can be used for evaluation of the cell image registration methods. Along with that, we describe an image analysis technique and a metric that can characterize the quality of the method quantitatively. The proposed methodology allows building a ground truth dataset for testing and thoroughly evaluating cell image registration methods.

  4. Research Opportunities and Challenges in the Era of Healthy Living Medicine: Unlocking the Potential.

    PubMed

    Phillips, Shane A; Martino, Sharon; Arena, Ross

    2017-01-26

    Non-communicable diseases, such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), obesity, cancer, pulmonary disease, and diabetes are a very high global health concern. The health costs of risk factors for CVD, such as hypertension (HTN), is mounting and are unrelenting. As an example, it is estimated that direct and indirect costs due to HTN amounted to $46.4 billion in 2011 and projections of six-fold increases by 2030; the importance of low-cost nonpharmacological interventions involving collaborative teams of health care professionals is at a critical junction. Certainly, the data supported by research including some clinical trials for healthy living interventions support deploying health education, nutrition, smoking cessation, and physical activity(PA) in preventing CVD risk, such as HTN. Exercise training (ET) for blood pressure (BP) control has been shown to be an effective and integral component of BP management. However, less is known about what optimization of PA/ET modalities with nutrition and lifestyle tracking with modern era technologies will bring to this equation. New research methods may need to consider how to collaborate to collect data in using teams of researchers while interacting with community centers, school systems, and in traditional health care practices. This review will discuss and present what is known about the research that support modern era healthy living medicine and how this data may be integrated in venues that support health lifestyle in the community (i.e. schools and the work place).

  5. The challenges of caring for families of the terminally ill: nurses' lived experience.

    PubMed

    Namasivayam, Pathmavathy; Orb, Angélica; O'Connor, Margaret

    2005-01-01

    Caring for families of the terminally ill is an important aspect of nursing care as nurses are considered the main health care professionals who are closest to families. This paper describes the experience of seven registered nurses caring for families of the terminally ill in Western Australia. Five of the nurses worked in an acute area at a public hospital; the other two nurses worked at long-term care settings at a private hospital. Descriptive phenomenology as described by Husserl (1970) was used to describe and explore nurses' lived experience. Data were collected through in depth interviews and analysed using the Colaizzi method. Four major themes are reported in this paper: 1) walking a journey together; 2) dealing with intense emotions; 3) working as a team; and 4) balancing the dimension of care. Nurses' lived experiences of caring for families of terminally ill patients revealed that nurses are confronted by families' emotions and at the same time needed to manage their own emotions. The findings further indicated that nurses play a significant role in caring for families of the terminally ill. The family's fear of losing their loved ones often resulted in conflicts, which required extra time from nurses. Moreover, some of the major barriers identified were time constraints and excessive workloads. Finally, some implications of the findings for registered nurses are discussed.

  6. Single-molecule imaging reveals modulation of cell wall synthesis dynamics in live bacterial cells

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Timothy K.; Meng, Kevin; Shi, Handuo; Huang, Kerwyn Casey

    2016-01-01

    The peptidoglycan cell wall is an integral organelle critical for bacterial cell shape and stability. Proper cell wall construction requires the interaction of synthesis enzymes and the cytoskeleton, but it is unclear how the activities of individual proteins are coordinated to preserve the morphology and integrity of the cell wall during growth. To elucidate this coordination, we used single-molecule imaging to follow the behaviours of the two major peptidoglycan synthases in live, elongating Escherichia coli cells and after perturbation. We observed heterogeneous localization dynamics of penicillin-binding protein (PBP) 1A, the synthase predominantly associated with cell wall elongation, with individual PBP1A molecules distributed between mobile and immobile populations. Perturbations to PBP1A activity, either directly through antibiotics or indirectly through PBP1A's interaction with its lipoprotein activator or other synthases, shifted the fraction of mobile molecules. Our results suggest that multiple levels of regulation control the activity of enzymes to coordinate peptidoglycan synthesis. PMID:27774981

  7. Cell death associated with abnormal mitosis observed by confocal imaging in live cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Castiel, Asher; Visochek, Leonid; Mittelman, Leonid; Zilberstein, Yael; Dantzer, Francoise; Izraeli, Shai; Cohen-Armon, Malka

    2013-08-21

    Phenanthrene derivatives acting as potent PARP1 inhibitors prevented the bi-focal clustering of supernumerary centrosomes in multi-centrosomal human cancer cells in mitosis. The phenanthridine PJ-34 was the most potent molecule. Declustering of extra-centrosomes causes mitotic failure and cell death in multi-centrosomal cells. Most solid human cancers have high occurrence of extra-centrosomes. The activity of PJ-34 was documented in real-time by confocal imaging of live human breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells transfected with vectors encoding for fluorescent γ-tubulin, which is highly abundant in the centrosomes and for fluorescent histone H2b present in the chromosomes. Aberrant chromosomes arrangements and de-clustered γ-tubulin foci representing declustered centrosomes were detected in the transfected MDA-MB-231 cells after treatment with PJ-34. Un-clustered extra-centrosomes in the two spindle poles preceded their cell death. These results linked for the first time the recently detected exclusive cytotoxic activity of PJ-34 in human cancer cells with extra-centrosomes de-clustering in mitosis, and mitotic failure leading to cell death. According to previous findings observed by confocal imaging of fixed cells, PJ-34 exclusively eradicated cancer cells with multi-centrosomes without impairing normal cells undergoing mitosis with two centrosomes and bi-focal spindles. This cytotoxic activity of PJ-34 was not shared by other potent PARP1 inhibitors, and was observed in PARP1 deficient MEF harboring extracentrosomes, suggesting its independency of PARP1 inhibition. Live confocal imaging offered a useful tool for identifying new molecules eradicating cells during mitosis.

  8. Long-Term Live Cell Imaging of Cell Migration: Effects of Pathogenic Fungi on Human Epithelial Cell Migration.

    PubMed

    Wöllert, Torsten; Langford, George M

    2016-01-01

    Long-term live cell imaging was used in this study to determine the responses of human epithelial cells to pathogenic biofilms formed by Candida albicans. Epithelial cells of the skin represent the front line of defense against invasive pathogens such as C. albicans but under certain circumstances, especially when the host's immune system is compromised, the skin barrier is breached. The mechanisms by which the fungal pathogen penetrates the skin and invade the deeper layers are not fully understood. In this study we used keratinocytes grown in culture as an in vitro model system to determine changes in host cell migration and the actin cytoskeleton in response to virulence factors produced by biofilms of pathogenic C. albicans. It is clear that changes in epithelial cell migration are part of the response to virulence factors secreted by biofilms of C. albicans and the actin cytoskeleton is the downstream effector that mediates cell migration. Our goal is to understand the mechanism by which virulence factors hijack the signaling pathways of the actin cytoskeleton to alter cell migration and thereby invade host tissues. To understand the dynamic changes of the actin cytoskeleton during infection, we used long-term live cell imaging to obtain spatial and temporal information of actin filament dynamics and to identify signal transduction pathways that regulate the actin cytoskeleton and its associated proteins. Long-term live cell imaging was achieved using a high resolution, multi-mode epifluorescence microscope equipped with specialized light sources, high-speed cameras with high sensitivity detectors, and specific biocompatible fluorescent markers. In addition to the multi-mode epifluorescence microscope, a spinning disk confocal long-term live cell imaging system (Olympus CV1000) equipped with a stage incubator to create a stable in vitro environment for long-term real-time and time-lapse microscopy was used. Detailed descriptions of these two long-term live

  9. Dual-color encoded DNAzyme nanostructures for multiplexed detection of intracellular metal ions in living cells.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Wenjiao; Liang, Wenbing; Li, Daxiu; Yuan, Ruo; Xiang, Yun

    2016-11-15

    The detection of intracellular metal ions is of great importance in understanding metal homeostasis in cells and related diseases, and yet it remains a significant challenge to achieve this goal. Based on a new self-assembled and dual-color encoded DNAzyme nanostructure, we describe here an approach for multiplexed sensing of UO2(2+) and Pb(2+) in living cells. The fluorescently quenched nanoprobes can be prepared by simple thermal annealing of four ssDNAs containing the metal ion-dependent enzymatic and substrate sequences. The self-assembly formation of the nanostructures are verified by native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The target metal ions can cleave the substrate sequences in the DNAzyme nanostructures to recover fluorescent emissions at different wavelengths for sensitive and selective in vitro multiplexed detection of UO2(2+) and Pb(2+) with the detection limits of 0.6nM and 3.9nM, respectively. Importantly, we demonstrate that these nanoprobes are stable in cell lysates and can enter cells without the aid of any transfection agents for simultaneous imaging intracellular UO2(2+) and Pb(2+). Moreover, the nanoprobes offer excellent biocompatibility and non-cytotoxicity. With these unique features, the dual-color encoded nanostructures presented here can thus offer new opportunities for multiplexed detection of specific intracellular species.

  10. Palladium-triggered deprotection chemistry for protein activation in living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jie; Yu, Juntao; Zhao, Jingyi; Wang, Jie; Zheng, Siqi; Lin, Shixian; Chen, Long; Yang, Maiyun; Jia, Shang; Zhang, Xiaoyu; Chen, Peng R.

    2014-04-01

    Employing small molecules or chemical reagents to modulate the function of an intracellular protein, particularly in a gain-of-function fashion, remains a challenge. In contrast to inhibitor-based loss-of-function approaches, methods based on a gain of function enable specific signalling pathways to be activated inside a cell. Here we report a chemical rescue strategy that uses a palladium-mediated deprotection reaction to activate a protein within living cells. We identify biocompatible and efficient palladium catalysts that cleave the propargyl carbamate group of a protected lysine analogue to generate a free lysine. The lysine analogue can be genetically and site-specifically incorporated into a protein, which enables control over the reaction site. This deprotection strategy is shown to work with a range of different cell lines and proteins. We further applied this biocompatible protection group/catalyst pair for caging and subsequent release of a crucial lysine residue in a bacterial Type III effector protein within host cells, which reveals details of its virulence mechanism.

  11. Direct identification of ligand-receptor interactions on living cells and tissues.

    PubMed

    Frei, Andreas P; Jeon, Ock-Youm; Kilcher, Samuel; Moest, Hansjoerg; Henning, Lisa M; Jost, Christian; Plückthun, Andreas; Mercer, Jason; Aebersold, Ruedi; Carreira, Erick M; Wollscheid, Bernd

    2012-10-01

    Many cellular responses are triggered by proteins, drugs or pathogens binding to cell-surface receptors, but it can be challenging to identify which receptors are bound by a given ligand. Here we describe TRICEPS, a chemoproteomic reagent with three moieties--one that binds ligands containing an amino group, a second that binds glycosylated receptors on living cells and a biotin tag for purifying the receptor peptides for identification by quantitative mass spectrometry. We validated this ligand-based, receptor-capture (LRC) technology using insulin, transferrin, apelin, epidermal growth factor, the therapeutic antibody trastuzumab and two DARPins targeting ErbB2. In some cases, we could also determine the approximate ligand-binding sites on the receptors. Using TRICEPS to label intact mature vaccinia viruses, we identified the cell surface proteins AXL, M6PR, DAG1, CSPG4 and CDH13 as binding factors on human cells. This technology enables the identification of receptors for many types of ligands under near-physiological conditions and without the need for genetic manipulations.

  12. Live-Cell Imaging of Vaccinia Virus Recombination.

    PubMed

    Paszkowski, Patrick; Noyce, Ryan S; Evans, David H

    2016-08-01

    Recombination between co-infecting poxviruses provides an important mechanism for generating the genetic diversity that underpins evolution. However, poxviruses replicate in membrane-bound cytoplasmic structures known as factories or virosomes. These are enclosed structures that could impede DNA mixing between co-infecting viruses, and mixing would seem to be essential for this process. We hypothesize that virosome fusion events would be a prerequisite for recombination between co-infecting poxviruses, and this requirement could delay or limit viral recombination. We have engineered vaccinia virus (VACV) to express overlapping portions of mCherry fluorescent protein fused to a cro DNA-binding element. In cells also expressing an EGFP-cro fusion protein, this permits live tracking of virus DNA and genetic recombination using confocal microscopy. Our studies show that different types of recombination events exhibit different timing patterns, depending upon the relative locations of the recombining elements. Recombination between partly duplicated sequences is detected soon after post-replicative genes are expressed, as long as the reporter gene sequences are located in cis within an infecting genome. The same kinetics are also observed when the recombining elements are divided between VACV and transfected DNA. In contrast, recombination is delayed when the recombining sequences are located on different co-infecting viruses, and mature recombinants aren't detected until well after late gene expression is well established. The delay supports the hypothesis that factories impede inter-viral recombination, but even after factories merge there remain further constraints limiting virus DNA mixing and recombinant gene assembly. This delay could be related to the continued presence of ER-derived membranes within the fused virosomes, membranes that may once have wrapped individual factories.

  13. Live-Cell Imaging of Vaccinia Virus Recombination

    PubMed Central

    Paszkowski, Patrick; Noyce, Ryan S.; Evans, David H.

    2016-01-01

    Recombination between co-infecting poxviruses provides an important mechanism for generating the genetic diversity that underpins evolution. However, poxviruses replicate in membrane-bound cytoplasmic structures known as factories or virosomes. These are enclosed structures that could impede DNA mixing between co-infecting viruses, and mixing would seem to be essential for this process. We hypothesize that virosome fusion events would be a prerequisite for recombination between co-infecting poxviruses, and this requirement could delay or limit viral recombination. We have engineered vaccinia virus (VACV) to express overlapping portions of mCherry fluorescent protein fused to a cro DNA-binding element. In cells also expressing an EGFP-cro fusion protein, this permits live tracking of virus DNA and genetic recombination using confocal microscopy. Our studies show that different types of recombination events exhibit different timing patterns, depending upon the relative locations of the recombining elements. Recombination between partly duplicated sequences is detected soon after post-replicative genes are expressed, as long as the reporter gene sequences are located in cis within an infecting genome. The same kinetics are also observed when the recombining elements are divided between VACV and transfected DNA. In contrast, recombination is delayed when the recombining sequences are located on different co-infecting viruses, and mature recombinants aren’t detected until well after late gene expression is well established. The delay supports the hypothesis that factories impede inter-viral recombination, but even after factories merge there remain further constraints limiting virus DNA mixing and recombinant gene assembly. This delay could be related to the continued presence of ER-derived membranes within the fused virosomes, membranes that may once have wrapped individual factories. PMID:27525721

  14. STED microscopy of living cells--new frontiers in membrane and neurobiology.

    PubMed

    Eggeling, Christian; Willig, Katrin I; Barrantes, Francisco J

    2013-07-01

    Recent developments in fluorescence far-field microscopy such as STED microscopy have accomplished observation of the living cell with a spatial resolution far below the diffraction limit. Here, we briefly review the current approaches to super-resolution optical microscopy and present the implementation of STED microscopy for novel insights into live cell mechanisms, with a focus on neurobiology and plasma membrane dynamics.

  15. 78 FR 49528 - Consolidation of Wound Care Products Containing Live Cells

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-08-14

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Consolidation of Wound Care Products Containing Live Cells...) is transferring oversight responsibilities for certain wound care products containing live cells from... scientific and regulatory activities between CDRH and CBER. FDA believes that as more wound care...

  16. Identifying the barriers and challenges to voting by residents in nursing homes and assisted living settings.

    PubMed

    Karlawish, Jason H T; Bonnie, Richard J; Appelbaum, Paul S; Kane, Rosalie A; Lyketsos, Constantine G; Karlan, Pamela S; James, Bryan D; Sabatino, Charles; Lawrence, Thomas; Knopman, David

    2008-01-01

    To ascertain the need for and to inform development of guidelines for voting in long-term care settings, we conducted a telephone survey of Philadelphia nursing (n = 31) and assisted living (n = 20) settings following the 2003 election. Substantial variability existed in procedures used for registration and voting, in staff attitudes, and in the estimated proportion of residents who voted (29%+/-28, range 0-100%). Residents who wanted to vote were unable to do so at nearly one-third of sites, largely due to procedural problems. Nearly two-thirds of facilities indicated they assessed residents' voting capacity before the election. However, methods differed and may have disenfranchised residents who were actually competent to vote. Current procedures in many facilities fail to protect voting rights. These data suggest that rights might be better protected if election officials took charge of registration, filing absentee ballot requests, ballot completion, and trained LTC facility staff on voters' rights and reasonable accommodations.

  17. Challenges for red blood cell biomarker discovery through proteomics.

    PubMed

    Barasa, Benjamin; Slijper, Monique

    2014-05-01

    Red blood cells are rather unique body cells, since they have lost all organelles when mature, which results in lack of potential to replace proteins that have lost their function. They maintain only a few pathways for obtaining energy and reducing power for the key functions they need to fulfill. This makes RBCs highly sensitive to any aberration. If so, these RBCs are quickly removed from circulation, but if the RBC levels reduce extremely fast, this results in hemolytic anemia. Several causes of HA exist, and proteome analysis is the most straightforward way to obtain deeper insight into RBC functioning under the stress of disease. This should result in discovery of biomarkers, typical for each source of anemia. In this review, several challenges to generate in-depth RBC proteomes are described, like to obtain pure RBCs, to overcome the wide dynamic range in protein expression, and to establish which of the identified/quantified proteins are active in RBCs. The final challenge is to acquire and validate suited biomarkers unique for the changes that occur for each of the clinical questions; in red blood cell aging (also important for transfusion medicine), for thalassemias or sickle cell disease. Biomarkers for other hemolytic anemias that are caused by dysfunction of RBC membrane proteins (the RBC membrane defects) or RBC cytosolic proteins (the enzymopathies) are sometimes even harder to discover, in particular for the patients with RBC rare diseases with unknown cause. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Biomarkers: A Proteomic Challenge.

  18. Exploring transduction mechanisms of protein transduction domains (PTDs) in living cells utilizing single-quantum dot tracking (SQT) technology.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Yasuhiro

    2012-01-01

    Specific protein domains known as protein transduction domains (PTDs) can permeate cell membranes and deliver proteins or bioactive materials into living cells. Various approaches have been applied for improving their transduction efficacy. It is, therefore, crucial to clarify the entry mechanisms and to identify the rate-limiting steps. Because of technical limitations for imaging PTD behavior on cells with conventional fluorescent-dyes, how PTDs enter the cells has been a topic of much debate. Utilizing quantum dots (QDs), we recently tracked the behavior of PTD that was derived from HIV-1 Tat (TatP) in living cells at the single-molecule level with 7-nm special precision. In this review article, we initially summarize the controversy on TatP entry mechanisms; thereafter, we will focus on our recent findings on single-TatP-QD tracking (SQT), to identify the major sequential steps of intracellular delivery in living cells and to discuss how SQT can easily provide direct information on TatP entry mechanisms. As a primer for SQT study, we also discuss the latest findings on single particle tracking of various molecules on the plasma membrane. Finally, we discuss the problems of QDs and the challenges for the future in utilizing currently available QD probes for SQT. In conclusion, direct identification of the rate-limiting steps of PTD entry with SQT should dramatically improve the methods for enhancing transduction efficiency.

  19. Dynamics of Chikungunya Virus Cell Entry Unraveled by Single-Virus Tracking in Living Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hoornweg, Tabitha E.; van Duijl-Richter, Mareike K. S.; Ayala Nuñez, Nilda V.; Albulescu, Irina C.; van Hemert, Martijn J.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a rapidly emerging mosquito-borne human pathogen causing major outbreaks in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. The cell entry pathway hijacked by CHIKV to infect a cell has been studied previously using inhibitory compounds. There has been some debate on the mechanism by which CHIKV enters the cell: several studies suggest that CHIKV enters via clathrin-mediated endocytosis, while others show that it enters independently of clathrin. Here we applied live-cell microscopy and monitored the cell entry behavior of single CHIKV particles in living cells transfected with fluorescent marker proteins. This approach allowed us to obtain detailed insight into the dynamic events that occur during CHIKV entry. We observed that almost all particles fused within 20 min after addition to the cells. Of the particles that fused, the vast majority first colocalized with clathrin. The average time from initial colocalization with clathrin to the moment of membrane fusion was 1.7 min, highlighting the rapidity of the cell entry process of CHIKV. Furthermore, these results show that the virus spends a relatively long time searching for a receptor. Membrane fusion was observed predominantly from within Rab5-positive endosomes and often occurred within 40 s after delivery to endosomes. Furthermore, we confirmed that a valine at position 226 of the E1 protein enhances the cholesterol-dependent membrane fusion properties of CHIKV. To conclude, our work confirms that CHIKV enters cells via clathrin-mediated endocytosis and shows that fusion occurs from within acidic early endosomes. IMPORTANCE Since its reemergence in 2004, chikungunya virus (CHIKV) has spread rapidly around the world, leading to millions of infections. CHIKV often causes chikungunya fever, a self-limiting febrile illness with severe arthralgia. Currently, no vaccine or specific antiviral treatment against CHIKV is available. A potential antiviral strategy is to interfere with the cell

  20. Laser phase microscopy and functional imaging of living human cancer cells during the cell cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perevedentseva, Elena V.; Graschew, Georgi; Balanos, Evangelos; Dressler, Cathrin; Beuthan, Juergen; Schlag, Peter M.

    2000-05-01

    The purpose of the investigation was to elaborate a new method of functional imaging of living tumor cells. Human colon carcinoma cells HCT116 were investigated with a conventional light microscope, confocal laser scanning microscope and with a laser phase microscope (LPM). The LPM is a functional imaging technique providing information about cell morphology which is imposed by the physiological inhomogeneity of the refractive index. The phase of the light wave passing through an object contains quantitative information about the object thickness, the shape, and the spatial distribution of the refractive index varying with morphology and chemical composition inhomogeneity inside the object. The new method of investigation of the cells in different stages of the cell cycle is developed. Every phase image of the investigated cells has been compared with conventional light microscopic and confocal microscopic images of the same cell. the relation between the cell state, their morphological peculiarities and the phase characteristics of the measured cell is determined. Data thus acquired, quantitatively characterizing intra- and intercellular processes during the cell cycle, and the method of measurements can be used to investigate with high optic resolution the mechanisms of different physical, chemical and biomolecular interactions with the tumor cells.

  1. Live-cell Imaging and Quantitative Analysis of Embryonic Epithelial Cells in Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Joshi, Sagar D.; Davidson, Lance A.

    2010-01-01

    Embryonic epithelial cells serve as an ideal model to study morphogenesis where multi-cellular tissues undergo changes in their geometry, such as changes in cell surface area and cell height, and where cells undergo mitosis and migrate. Furthermore, epithelial cells can also regulate morphogenetic movements in adjacent tissues1. A traditional method to study epithelial cells and tissues involve chemical fixation and histological methods to determine cell morphology or localization of particular proteins of interest. These approaches continue to be useful and provide "snapshots" of cell shapes and tissue architecture, however, much remains to be understood about how cells acquire specific shapes, how various proteins move or localize to specific positions, and what paths cells follow toward their final differentiated fate. High resolution live imaging complements traditional methods and also allows more direct investigation into the dynamic cellular processes involved in the formation, maintenance, and morphogenesis of multicellular epithelial sheets. Here we demonstrate experimental methods from the isolation of animal cap tissues from Xenopus laevis embryos to confocal imaging of epithelial cells and simple measurement approaches that together can augment molecular and cellular studies of epithelial morphogenesis. PMID:20498627

  2. Live Imaging of Companion Cells and Sieve Elements in Arabidopsis Leaves

    PubMed Central

    Cayla, Thibaud; Batailler, Brigitte; Le Hir, Rozenn; Revers, Frédéric; Anstead, James A.; Thompson, Gary A.; Grandjean, Olivier; Dinant, Sylvie

    2015-01-01

    The phloem is a complex tissue composed of highly specialized cells with unique subcellular structures and a compact organization that is challenging to study in vivo at cellular resolution. We used confocal scanning laser microscopy and subcellular fluorescent markers in companion cells and sieve elements, for live imaging of the phloem in Arabidopsis leaves. This approach provided a simple framework for identifying phloem cell types unambiguously. It highlighted the compactness of the meshed network of organelles within companion cells. By contrast, within the sieve elements, unknown bodies were observed in association with the PP2-A1:GFP, GFP:RTM1 and RTM2:GFP markers at the cell periphery. The phloem lectin PP2-A1:GFP marker was found in the parietal ground matrix. Its location differed from that of the P-protein filaments, which were visualized with SEOR1:GFP and SEOR2:GFP. PP2-A1:GFP surrounded two types of bodies, one of which was identified as mitochondria. This location suggested that it was embedded within the sieve element clamps, specific structures that may fix the organelles to each another or to the plasma membrane in the sieve tubes. GFP:RTM1 was associated with a class of larger bodies, potentially corresponding to plastids. PP2-A1:GFP was soluble in the cytosol of immature sieve elements. The changes in its subcellular localization during differentiation provide an in vivo blueprint for monitoring this process. The subcellular features obtained with these companion cell and sieve element markers can be used as landmarks for exploring the organization and dynamics of phloem cells in vivo. PMID:25714357

  3. Live imaging of companion cells and sieve elements in Arabidopsis leaves.

    PubMed

    Cayla, Thibaud; Batailler, Brigitte; Le Hir, Rozenn; Revers, Frédéric; Anstead, James A; Thompson, Gary A; Grandjean, Olivier; Dinant, Sylvie

    2015-01-01

    The phloem is a complex tissue composed of highly specialized cells with unique subcellular structures and a compact organization that is challenging to study in vivo at cellular resolution. We used confocal scanning laser microscopy and subcellular fluorescent markers in companion cells and sieve elements, for live imaging of the phloem in Arabidopsis leaves. This approach provided a simple framework for identifying phloem cell types unambiguously. It highlighted the compactness of the meshed network of organelles within companion cells. By contrast, within the sieve elements, unknown bodies were observed in association with the PP2-A1:GFP, GFP:RTM1 and RTM2:GFP markers at the cell periphery. The phloem lectin PP2-A1:GFP marker was found in the parietal ground matrix. Its location differed from that of the P-protein filaments, which were visualized with SEOR1:GFP and SEOR2:GFP. PP2-A1:GFP surrounded two types of bodies, one of which was identified as mitochondria. This location suggested that it was embedded within the sieve element clamps, specific structures that may fix the organelles to each another or to the plasma membrane in the sieve tubes. GFP:RTM1 was associated with a class of larger bodies, potentially corresponding to plastids. PP2-A1:GFP was soluble in the cytosol of immature sieve elements. The changes in its subcellular localization during differentiation provide an in vivo blueprint for monitoring this process. The subcellular features obtained with these companion cell and sieve element markers can be used as landmarks for exploring the organization and dynamics of phloem cells in vivo.

  4. Understanding the initiation of B cell signaling through live cell imaging

    PubMed Central

    Pierce, Susan K.

    2013-01-01

    Antibody responses are initiated by the binding of antigens to clonally distributed cell surface B cell receptors (BCRs) that trigger signaling cascades resulting in B cell activation. Using conventional biochemical approaches, the components of the downstream BCR signaling pathways have been described in considerable detail. However, far less is known about the early molecular events by which the binding of antigens to the BCRs initiates BCR signaling. With the recent advent of high-resolution, high-speed, live-cell and single-molecule imaging technologies, these events are just beginning to be elucidated. Understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying the initiation of BCR signaling may provide new targets for therapeutics to block dysregulated BCR signaling in systemic autoimmune diseases and in B cell tumors and to aid in the design of protein subunit vaccines. In this chapter we describe the general procedures for using these new imaging techniques to investigate the early events in the initiation of BCR signaling. PMID:22341229

  5. Emerging challenges of advanced squamous cell lung cancer

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yi-Chen; Zhou, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Squamous cell lung cancer (SQCLC) is an aggressive type of lung cancer and most are diagnosed at advanced stage. Patients with advanced SQCLC tend to be older, current or former smoker, with central type tumour located near large blood vessels and seldom with druggable genetic alternations. Consequently, progress of targeted therapy and antivascular agents available in lung adenocarcinoma could not be duplicated in this subset of patients. The treatment paradigms have long been dominant by cytotoxic agents and posed many therapeutic challenges. Until recent years, immune checkpoint inhibitors, other monoclonal antibodies and afatinib have been approved for treatment of advanced SQCLC, presenting a novel treatment landscape and initiating the era of precision medicine in this subset of patients. This review will summarise the recent treatment progresses in advanced SQCLC with a focus on checkpoint inhibitors of programmed cell death-1 receptor or its ligand, and discuss the emerging challenges in this new era. PMID:28255454

  6. Common gynecological challenges in adolescents with sickle cell disease.

    PubMed

    Stimpson, Sarah-Jo; Rebele, Erin C; DeBaun, Michael R

    2016-01-01

    Sickle cell anemia is one of the most common genetic blood disorders worldwide. Individuals with sickle cell disease (SCD) experience clinical manifestations such as chronic anemia, developmental delay, vaso-occlusive pain, acute chest syndrome, and neurological complications. Adolescent girls with SCD face unique gynecological challenges including delayed puberty marked by a later onset in menarche, vaso-occlusive pain associated with their menstrual cycle, and underdiagnosed abnormal uterine bleeding. This review focuses on these challenges with particular emphasis on delayed menarche and vaso-occlusive pain episodes associated with menstruation, in addition to the evaluation and initial management of heavy menstrual bleeding for adolescents with SCD. We highlight research opportunities in this neglected area to help enhance the comprehensive care model for this population.

  7. Single-Cell Transcriptomics Bioinformatics and Computational Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Poirion, Olivier B.; Zhu, Xun; Ching, Travers; Garmire, Lana

    2016-01-01

    The emerging single-cell RNA-Seq (scRNA-Seq) technology holds the promise to revolutionize our understanding of diseases and associated biological processes at an unprecedented resolution. It opens the door to reveal intercellular heterogeneity and has been employed to a variety of applications, ranging from characterizing cancer cells subpopulations to elucidating tumor resistance mechanisms. Parallel to improving experimental protocols to deal with technological issues, deriving new analytical methods to interpret the complexity in scRNA-Seq data is just as challenging. Here, we review current state-of-the-art bioinformatics tools and methods for scRNA-Seq analysis, as well as addressing some critical analytical challenges that the field faces. PMID:27708664

  8. The challenges experienced by Iranian war veterans living with chemical warfare poisoning: a descriptive, exploratory study.

    PubMed

    Hassankhani, Hadi; Taleghani, Fariba; Mills, Jane; Birks, Melanie; Francis, Karen; Ahmadi, Fazlolah

    2010-06-01

    This exploratory, descriptive study investigates the experiences of Iranian war veterans living with chronic disease acquired as a result of chemical warfare. Sulphur mustard (SM) is considered one of the most important agents of chemical warfare and was widely used during the Iran-Iraq conflict in 1980-1988. There are approximately 100 000 Iranian SM casualties who suffer from serious long-term progressive health problems involving their respiratory organs, eyes and skin. Seventeen male Iranian war veterans aged between 30 and 59 years and four victims' family members participated in the study. Data was generated during individual in-depth interviews that used open-ended questions. Grounded theory techniques, including the constant comparative method of concurrent data generation and analysis, were employed in the analysis of data. Preliminary results indicate two main thematic categories: social isolation and physical disability. It is argued that a lack of knowledge about the outcomes of SM poisoning, physical restrictions and difficulty in adjusting socially decreases war veterans' functional capacity and levels of independence.

  9. Sexuality of people living with a mental illness: a collaborative challenge for mental health nurses.

    PubMed

    Quinn, Chris; Browne, Graeme

    2009-06-01

    This article is a review of the literature examining the sexuality of mental health consumers and the role of mental health nurses. A search identified 72 English articles on the topic. The evidence clearly indicates that sexuality is a critical aspect of who we are as individuals, and of how we view ourselves, but discussion of this topic is neglected by mental health nurses. Discussion focuses upon the wide acceptance of sexuality as a legitimate area for nurses to address in their care, and addresses mental health nurses' lack of knowledge about sexuality, conservative attitudes, and anxiety when discussing sexual issues. Consumer sexuality is poorly assessed in mental health, and is infrequently explored by mental health nurses. The result is that issues of sexuality for the consumer continue to affect many areas of their lives, including their relationships and ongoing commitment to treatment. The nurse-consumer relationship provides an opportunity to take sexual history into consideration, promote safe sexual practices, discuss sexual problems, and educate clients about sexual issues. This literature review identifies the need for further discussion of this topic and for research to point the way ahead for this important but neglected area of mental health nursing.

  10. An overview of challenges in modeling heat and mass transfer for living on Mars.

    PubMed

    Yamashita, Masamichi; Ishikawa, Yoji; Kitaya, Yoshiaki; Goto, Eiji; Arai, Mayumi; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Tomita-Yokotani, Kaori; Hirafuji, Masayuki; Omori, Katsunori; Shiraishi, Atsushi; Tani, Akira; Toki, Kyoichiro; Yokota, Hiroki; Fujita, Osamu

    2006-09-01

    Engineering a life-support system for living on Mars requires the modeling of heat and mass transfer. This report describes the analysis of heat and mass transfer phenomena in a greenhouse dome, which is being designed as a pressurized life-support system for agricultural production on Mars. In this Martian greenhouse, solar energy will be converted into chemical energy in plant biomass. Agricultural products will be harvested for food and plant cultivation, and waste materials will be processed in a composting microbial ecosystem. Transpired water from plants will be condensed and recycled. In our thermal design and analysis for the Martian greenhouse, we addressed the question of whether temperature and pressure would be maintained in the appropriate range for humans as well as plants. Energy flow and material circulation should be controlled to provide an artificial ecological system on Mars. In our analysis, we assumed that the greenhouse would be maintained at a subatmospheric pressure under 1/3-G gravitational force with 1/2 solar light intensity on Earth. Convection of atmospheric gases will be induced inside the greenhouse, primarily by heating from sunlight. Microclimate (thermal and gas species structure) could be generated locally around plant bodies, which would affect gas transport. Potential effects of those environmental factors are discussed on the phenomena including plant growth and plant physiology and focusing on transport processes. Fire safety is a crucial issue and we evaluate its impact on the total gas pressure in the greenhouse dome.

  11. [Biomass energy utilization in microbial fuel cells: potentials and challenges].

    PubMed

    Huang, Liping; Cheng, Shaoan

    2010-07-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) that can harvest biomass energy from organic wastes through microbial catalysis have garnered more and more attention within the past decade due to its potential benefits to ecological environment. In this article, the updated progress in MFCs is reviewed, with a focus on frontier technologies such as chamber configurations, feedstock varieties and the integration of MFCs with microbial electrolysis cells for hydrogen production. And on the other hand, the challenges like development of cost-effective electrode materials, improvement of biomass energy recovery and power output, design and optimization of commercial MFC devices are presented.

  12. Stem Cell Therapy for Neonatal Disorders: Prospects and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Yun Sil; Ahn, So Yoon; Sung, Sein

    2017-01-01

    Despite recent advances in neonatal medicine, neonatal disorders, such as bronchopulmonary dysplasia and intraventricular hemorrhage in preterm neonates and hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy in term neonates, remain major causes of mortality and morbidities. Promising preclinical research results suggest that stem cell therapies represent the next breakthrough in the treatment of currently intractable and devastating neonatal disorders with complex multifactorial etiologies. This review focuses primarily on the potential role of stem cell therapy in the above mentioned neonatal disorders, highlighting the results of human clinical trials and the challenges that remain to be addressed for their safe and successful translation into clinical care of newborn infants. PMID:28120555

  13. Stem cell approaches in psychiatry--challenges and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Benninghoff, Jens

    2009-01-01

    Exploring stem cells is a fascinating task, especially in a discipline where the use of stem cells seems far-fetched at first glance, as is the case in psychiatry. In this article we would like to provide a brief overview of the current situation in relation to the treatment of mental diseases. For reasons that we will explain, this review will focus on affective disorders. The following section will give a more detailed account of stem-cell biology including current basic science approaches presenting in-vivo and in-vitro techniques. The final part will then look into future perspectives of using these stem cells to cure mental illnesses, and discuss the related challenges and opportunities.

  14. Heterosubtypic T-Cell Immunity to Influenza in Humans: Challenges for Universal T-Cell Influenza Vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Sridhar, Saranya

    2016-01-01

    Influenza A virus (IAV) remains a significant global health issue causing annual epidemics, pandemics, and sporadic human infections with highly pathogenic avian or swine influenza viruses. Current inactivated and live vaccines are the mainstay of the public health response to influenza, although vaccine efficacy is lower against antigenically distinct viral strains. The first pandemic of the twenty-first century underlined the urgent need to develop new vaccines capable of protecting against a broad range of influenza strains. Such “universal” influenza vaccines are based on the idea of heterosubtypic immunity, wherein immune responses to epitopes conserved across IAV strains can confer protection against subsequent infection and disease. T-cells recognizing conserved antigens are a key contributor in reducing viral load and limiting disease severity during heterosubtypic infection in animal models. Recent studies undertaken during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic provided key insights into the role of cross-reactive T-cells in mediating heterosubtypic protection in humans. This review focuses on human influenza to discuss the epidemiological observations that underpin cross-protective immunity, the role of T-cells as key players in mediating heterosubtypic immunity including recent data from natural history cohort studies and the ongoing clinical development of T-cell-inducing universal influenza vaccines. The challenges and knowledge gaps for developing vaccines to generate long-lived protective T-cell responses is discussed. PMID:27242800

  15. Characterization of Fluorescent Proteins for Three- and Four-Color Live-Cell Imaging in S. cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Higuchi-Sanabria, Ryo; Garcia, Enrique J.; Tomoiaga, Delia; Munteanu, Emilia L.; Feinstein, Paul; Pon, Liza A.

    2016-01-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae are widely used for imaging fluorescently tagged protein fusions. Fluorescent proteins can easily be inserted into yeast genes at their chromosomal locus, by homologous recombination, for expression of tagged proteins at endogenous levels. This is especially useful for incorporation of multiple fluorescent protein fusions into a single strain, which can be challenging in organisms where genetic manipulation is more complex. However, the availability of optimal fluorescent protein combinations for 3-color imaging is limited. Here, we have characterized a combination of fluorescent proteins, mTFP1/mCitrine/mCherry for multicolor live cell imaging in S. cerevisiae. This combination can be used with conventional blue dyes, such as DAPI, for potential four-color live cell imaging. PMID:26727004

  16. Visual detection of multidrug resistance gene in living cell using the molecular beacon imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Qiumei; Ma, Yi; Gu, Yueqing

    2014-09-01

    A major problem in cancer treatment is the development of resistance to chemotherapeutic agents in tumor cells. Detection of effective prognostic biomarkers and targets are of crucial importance to the management of individualized therapies. However, quantitative analysis of the drug resistance gene had been difficult because of technical limitations. In this study, we designed and used a special hairpin deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), which served as a beacon for detecting human drug resistance indicater. Upon hybridizing with the target mRNA, the hairpin DNA modified gold nanoparticle beacons (hDAuNP beacons) release the fluorophores attached at 5'end of the oligonucleotide sequence. The fluorescence properties of the beacon before and after the hybridization with the complementary DNA were confirmed in vitro. The hDAuNP beacons could be taken up by living cells with low inherent cytotoxicity and higher stability. hDAuNP beacon imaged by confocal laser scanning microscopy to detect the resistance gene expression. The detected fluorescence in MCF7and MCF7/ADR cells correlates with the specific drug resistance gene expression, which is consistent with the result from Q-PCR. Thus, this approach overcame many of the challenges of previous techniques by creating highly sensitive and effective intracellular probes for monitoring gene expression.

  17. Manipulation and Motion of Organelles and Single Molecules in Living Cells.

    PubMed

    Norregaard, Kamilla; Metzler, Ralf; Ritter, Christine M; Berg-Sørensen, Kirstine; Oddershede, Lene B

    2017-03-08

    The biomolecule is among the most important building blocks of biological systems, and a full understanding of its function forms the scaffold for describing the mechanisms of higher order structures as organelles and cells. Force is a fundamental regulatory mechanism of biomolecular interactions driving many cellular processes. The forces on a molecular scale are exactly in the range that can be manipulated and probed with single molecule force spectroscopy. The natural environment of a biomolecule is inside a living cell, hence, this is the most relevant environment for probing their function. In vivo studies are, however, challenged by the complexity of the cell. In this review, we start with presenting relevant theoretical tools for analyzing single molecule data obtained in intracellular environments followed by a description of state-of-the art visualization techniques. The most commonly used force spectroscopy techniques, namely optical tweezers, magnetic tweezers, and atomic force microscopy, are described in detail, and their strength and limitations related to in vivo experiments are discussed. Finally, recent exciting discoveries within the field of in vivo manipulation and dynamics of single molecule and organelles are reviewed.

  18. Stochastic transport through carbon nanotubes in lipid bilayers and live cell membranes.

    PubMed

    Geng, Jia; Kim, Kyunghoon; Zhang, Jianfei; Escalada, Artur; Tunuguntla, Ramya; Comolli, Luis R; Allen, Frances I; Shnyrova, Anna V; Cho, Kang Rae; Munoz, Dayannara; Wang, Y Morris; Grigoropoulos, Costas P; Ajo-Franklin, Caroline M; Frolov, Vadim A; Noy, Aleksandr

    2014-10-30

    There is much interest in developing synthetic analogues of biological membrane channels with high efficiency and exquisite selectivity for transporting ions and molecules. Bottom-up and top-down methods can produce nanopores of a size comparable to that of endogenous protein channels, but replicating their affinity and transport properties remains challenging. In principle, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) should be an ideal membrane channel platform: they exhibit excellent transport properties and their narrow hydrophobic inner pores mimic structural motifs typical of biological channels. Moreover, simulations predict that CNTs with a length comparable to the thickness of a lipid bilayer membrane can self-insert into the membrane. Functionalized CNTs have indeed been found to penetrate lipid membranes and cell walls, and short tubes have been forced into membranes to create sensors, yet membrane transport applications of short CNTs remain underexplored. Here we show that short CNTs spontaneously insert into lipid bilayers and live cell membranes to form channels that exhibit a unitary conductance of 70-100 picosiemens under physiological conditions. Despite their structural simplicity, these 'CNT porins' transport water, protons, small ions and DNA, stochastically switch between metastable conductance substates, and display characteristic macromolecule-induced ionic current blockades. We also show that local channel and membrane charges can control the conductance and ion selectivity of the CNT porins, thereby establishing these nanopores as a promising biomimetic platform for developing cell interfaces, studying transport in biological channels, and creating stochastic sensors.

  19. An excited-state intramolecular photon transfer fluorescence probe for localizable live cell imaging of cysteine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Wei; Chen, Wen; Liu, Si-Jia; Jiang, Jian-Hui

    2017-03-01

    Small molecule probes suitable for selective and specific fluorescence imaging of some important but low-concentration intracellular reactive sulfur species such as cysteine (Cys) pose a challenge in chemical biology. We present a readily available, fast-response fluorescence probe CHCQ-Ac, with 2-(5‧-chloro-2-hydroxyl-phenyl)-6-chloro-4(3 H)-quinazolinone (CHCQ) as the fluorophore and acrylate group as the functional moiety, that enables high-selectivity and high-sensitivity for detecting Cys in both solution and biological system. After specifically reacted with Cys, the probe undergoes a seven-membered intramolecular cyclization and released the fluorophore CHCQ with excited-state intramolecular photon transfer effect. A highly fluorescent, insoluble aggregate was then formed to facilitate high-sensitivity and high-resolution imaging. The results showed that probe CHCQ-Ac affords a remarkably large Stokes shift and can detect Cys under physiological pH condition with no interference from other analytes. Moreover, this probe was proved to have excellent chemical stability, low cytotoxicity and good cell permeability. Our design of this probe provides a novel potential tool to visualize and localize cysteine in bioimaging of live cells that would greatly help to explore various Cys-related physiological and pathological cellular processes in cell biology and diagnostics.

  20. Live Attenuated Mutants of Francisella tularensis Protect Rabbits against Aerosol Challenge with a Virulent Type A Strain

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Le'Kneitah P.; Cole, Kelly Stefano; Santiago, Araceli E.; Mann, Barbara J.; Barry, Eileen M.

    2014-01-01

    Francisella tularensis, a Gram-negative bacterium, is the causative agent of tularemia. No licensed vaccine is currently available for protection against tularemia, although an attenuated strain, dubbed the live vaccine strain (LVS), is given to at-risk laboratory personnel as an investigational new drug (IND). In an effort to develop a vaccine that offers better protection, recombinant attenuated derivatives of a virulent type A strain, SCHU S4, were evaluated in New Zealand White (NZW) rabbits. Rabbits vaccinated via scarification with the three attenuated derivatives (SCHU S4 ΔguaBA, ΔaroD, and ΔfipB strains) or with LVS developed a mild fever, but no weight loss was detected. Twenty-one days after vaccination, all vaccinated rabbits were seropositive for IgG to F. tularensis lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Thirty days after vaccination, all rabbits were challenged with aerosolized SCHU S4 at doses ranging from 50 to 500 50% lethal doses (LD50). All rabbits developed fevers and weight loss after challenge, but the severity was greater for mock-vaccinated rabbits. The ΔguaBA and ΔaroD SCHU S4 derivatives provided partial protection against death (27 to 36%) and a prolonged time to death compared to results for the mock-vaccinated group. In contrast, LVS and the ΔfipB strain both prolonged the time to death, but there were no survivors from the challenge. This is the first demonstration of vaccine efficacy against aerosol challenge with virulent type A F. tularensis in a species other than a rodent since the original work with LVS in the 1960s. The ΔguaBA and ΔaroD SCHU S4 derivatives warrant further evaluation and consideration as potential vaccines for tularemia and for identification of immunological correlates of protection. PMID:24614653

  1. Live-Cell Chromosome Dynamics and Outcome of X Chromosome Pairing Events during ES Cell Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Masui, Osamu; Bonnet, Isabelle; Le Baccon, Patricia; Brito, Isabel; Pollex, Tim; Murphy, Niall; Hupé, Philippe; Barillot, Emmanuel; Belmont, Andrew S.; Heard, Edith

    2013-01-01

    Summary Random X inactivation represents a paradigm for monoallelic gene regulation during early ES cell differentiation. In mice, the choice of X chromosome to inactivate in XX cells is ensured by monoallelic regulation of Xist RNA via its antisense transcription unit Tsix/Xite. Homologous pairing events have been proposed to underlie asymmetric Tsix expression, but direct evidence has been lacking owing to their dynamic and transient nature. Here we investigate the live-cell dynamics and outcome of Tsix pairing in differentiating mouse ES cells. We find an overall increase in genome dynamics including the Xics during early differentiation. During pairing, however, Xic loci show markedly reduced movements. Upon separation, Tsix expression becomes transiently monoallelic, providing a window of opportunity for monoallelic Xist upregulation. Our findings reveal the spatiotemporal choreography of the X chromosomes during early differentiation and indicate a direct role for pairing in facilitating symmetry-breaking and monoallelic regulation of Xist during random X inactivation. PMID:21529716

  2. The application of KillerRed for acute protein inactivation in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Jarvela, Timothy S.; Linstedt, Adam D.

    2017-01-01

    Generating loss of protein function is a powerful investigatory tool particularly if carried out at a physiologically relevant timescale in a live-cell fluorescent imaging experiment. KillerRed mediated chromophore assisted light inactivation (CALI) uses genetic encoding for specificity and light for acute inactivation that can also be spatially restricted. This unit provides protocols for setting up and carrying out properly controlled KillerRed experiments during live-cell imaging of cultured cells. PMID:24984963

  3. Quantitative Fluorescence Studies in Living Cells: Extending Fluorescence Fluctuation Spectroscopy to Peripheral Membrane Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Elizabeth Myhra

    The interactions of peripheral membrane proteins with both membrane lipids and proteins are vital for many cellular processes including membrane trafficking, cellular signaling, and cell growth/regulation. Building accurate biophysical models of these processes requires quantitative characterization of the behavior of peripheral membrane proteins, yet methods to quantify their interactions inside living cells are very limited. Because peripheral membrane proteins usually exist both in membrane-bound and cytoplasmic forms, the separation of these two populations is a key challenge. This thesis aims at addressing this challenge by extending fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy (FFS) to simultaneously measure the oligomeric state of peripheral membrane proteins in the cytoplasm and at the plasma membrane. We developed a new method based on z-scan FFS that accounts for the fluorescence contributions from cytoplasmic and membrane layers by incorporating a fluorescence intensity z-scan through the cell. H-Ras-EGFP served as a model system to demonstrate the feasibility of the technique. The resolvability and stability of z-scanning was determined as well as the oligomeric state of H-Ras-EGFP at the plasma membrane and in the cytoplasm. Further, we successfully characterized the binding affinity of a variety of proteins to the plasma membrane by quantitative analysis of the z-scan fluorescence intensity profile. This analysis method, which we refer to as z-scan fluorescence profile deconvoution, was further used in combination with dual-color competition studies to determine the lipid specificity of protein binding. Finally, we applied z-scan FFS to provide insight into the early assembly steps of the HTLV-1 retrovirus.

  4. Understanding the mental health of youth living with perinatal HIV infection: lessons learned and current challenges

    PubMed Central

    Mellins, Claude A; Malee, Kathleen M

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Across the globe, children born with perinatal HIV infection (PHIV) are reaching adolescence and young adulthood in large numbers. The majority of research has focused on biomedical outcomes yet there is increasing awareness that long-term survivors with PHIV are at high risk for mental health problems, given genetic, biomedical, familial and environmental risk. This article presents a review of the literature on the mental health functioning of perinatally HIV-infected (PHIV+) adolescents, corresponding risk and protective factors, treatment modalities and critical needs for future interventions and research. Methods An extensive review of online databases was conducted. Articles including: (1) PHIV+ youth; (2) age 10 and older; (3) mental health outcomes; and (4) mental health treatment were reviewed. Of 93 articles identified, 38 met inclusion criteria, the vast majority from the United States and Europe. Results These studies suggest that PHIV+ youth experience emotional and behavioural problems, including psychiatric disorders, at higher than expected rates, often exceeding those of the general population and other high-risk groups. Yet, the specific role of HIV per se remains unclear, as uninfected youth with HIV exposure or those living in HIV-affected households displayed similar prevalence rates in some studies, higher rates in others and lower rates in still others. Although studies are limited with mixed findings, this review indicates that child-health status, cognitive function, parental health and mental health, stressful life events and neighbourhood disorder have been associated with worse mental health outcomes, while parent–child involvement and communication, and peer, parent and teacher social support have been associated with better function. Few evidence-based interventions exist; CHAMP+, a mental health programme for PHIV+ youth, shows promise across cultures. Conclusions This review highlights research limitations that

  5. Actuarial senescence in a long-lived orchid challenges our current understanding of ageing.

    PubMed

    Dahlgren, Johan Petter; Colchero, Fernando; Jones, Owen R; Øien, Dag-Inge; Moen, Asbjørn; Sletvold, Nina

    2016-11-16

    The dominant evolutionary theory of actuarial senescence-an increase in death rate with advancing age-is based on the concept of a germ cell line that is separated from the somatic cells early in life. However, such a separation is not clear in all organisms. This has been suggested to explain the paucity of evidence for actuarial senescence in plants. We used a 32 year study of Dactylorhiza lapponica that replaces its organs each growing season, to test whether individuals of this tuberous orchid senesce. We performed a Bayesian survival trajectory analysis accounting for reproductive investment, for individuals under two types of land use, in two climatic regions. The mortality trajectory was best approximated by a Weibull model, showing clear actuarial senescence. Rates of senescence in this model declined with advancing age, but were slightly higher in mown plots and in the more benign climatic region. At older ages, senescence was evident only when accounting for a positive effect of reproductive investment on mortality. Our results demonstrate actuarial senescence as well as a survival-reproduction trade-off in plants, and indicate that environmental context may influence senescence rates. This knowledge is crucial for understanding the evolution of demographic senescence and for models of plant population dynamics.

  6. Antibody-forming cell response to virus challenge in mice immunized with DNA encoding the influenza virus hemagglutinin.

    PubMed Central

    Justewicz, D M; Morin, M J; Robinson, H L; Webster, R G

    1995-01-01

    Immunization of mice with DNA encoding the influenza virus hemagglutinin (HA) affords complete protection against lethal influenza virus infection and the means to investigate the mechanisms of B-cell responsiveness to virus challenge. Using a single-cell enzyme-linked immunospot assay, we sought to determine the localization of HA-specific antibody-forming cells (AFCs) during the development of humoral immunity in mice given HA DNA vaccine by gene gun. At 33 days postvaccination, populations of AFCs were maintained in the spleen and bone marrow. In response to lethal challenge with influenza virus, the AFCs became localized at the site of antigenic challenge, i.e., within the draining lymph nodes of the lung compartment. Immunoglobulin G (IgG)- and IgA-producing AFCs were detected in lymph nodes of the upper and lower respiratory tracts, underscoring their importance in clearing virus from the lungs. Response to challenge required competent CD4+ T cells, without which no AFCs were generated, even those producing IgM. By contrast, in mice vaccinated with an HA-containing subunit vaccine, fewer AFCs were generated in response to challenge, and these animals were less capable of resisting infection. Our findings demonstrate the comparable localization of AFCs in response to challenge in mice vaccinated with either HA DNA or live virus. Moreover, the former strategy generates both IgG- and IgA-producing plasma cells. PMID:7494280

  7. Artificial Cell Therapy: New Strategies for the Therapeutic Delivery of Live Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    There has been rapid growth in research regarding the use of live bacterial cells for therapeutic purposes. The recognition that these cells can be genetically engineered to synthesize products that have therapeutic potential has generated considerable interest and excitement among clinicians and health professionals. It is expected that a wide range of disease modifying substrates such as enzymes, hormones, antibodies, vaccines, and other genetic products will be used successfully and will impact upon health care substantially. However, a major limitation in the use of these bacterial cells is the complexity of delivering them to the correct target tissues. Oral delivery of live cells, lyophilized cells, and immobilized cells has been attempted but with limited success. Primarily, this is because bacterial cells are incapable of surviving passage through the gastrointestinal tract. In many occasions, when given orally, these cells have been found to provoke immunogenic responses that are undesirable. Recent studies show that these problems can be overcome by delivering live bacterial cells, such as genetically engineered cells, using artificial cell microcapsules. This review summarizes recent advances in the therapeutic use of live bacterial cells for therapy, discusses the principles of using artificial cells for the oral delivery of bacterial cells, outlines methods for preparing suitable artificial cells for this purpose, addresses potentials and limitations for their application in therapy, and provides insight for the future direction of this emergent and highly prospective technology. PMID:15689638

  8. Cross-priming of long lived protective CD8+ T cells against Trypanosoma cruzi infection: importance of a TLR9 agonist and CD4+ T cells.

    PubMed

    de Alencar, Bruna C G; Araújo, Adriano F S; Penido, Marcus L O; Gazzinelli, Ricardo T; Rodrigues, Mauricio M

    2007-08-10

    We recently described that vaccination of mice with a glutathione S transferase fusion protein representing amino acids 261-500 of the Amastigote Surface Protein-2 efficiently cross-primed protective CD8+ T cells against a lethal challenge with the human protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. In this study, we initially established that this protective immunity was long lived. Subsequently, we studied the importance of TLR9 agonist CpG ODN 1826, TLR4 and CD4+ T cells for the generation of these protective CD8+ T cells. We found that: (i) the TLR9 agonist CpG ODN 1826 improved the efficiency of protective immunity; (ii) TLR4 is not relevant for priming of specific CD8+ T cells; (iii) CD4+ T cells are critical for priming of memory/protective CD8+ T cells.

  9. Live cell quality control and utility of real-time cell electronic sensing for assay development.

    PubMed

    Kirstein, Shelli L; Atienza, Josephine M; Xi, Biao; Zhu, Jenny; Yu, Naichen; Wang, Xiaobo; Xu, Xiao; Abassi, Yama A

    2006-10-01

    In this paper we have explored the utility of the real-time cell electronic sensing (RTCES, ACEA Biosciences Inc., San Diego, CA) system for monitoring the quality of live cells in cell-based assays as well as for assay development. We have demonstrated that each cell type displays unique growth kinetic profiles that provide a quantitative account of cell behavior and can be used as a diagnostic tool for cellular quality control. The utility of the specific signature patterns was shown by demonstrating the significant differences in primary cell behavior depending on the supplier. In addition, the RT-CES system was able to differentiate cell behavior depending on the passage stage of the cells. The utility of the RT-CES system as an assay development tool was demonstrated in cytotoxicity assays. The RT-CES system not only provides information regarding the potency of cytotoxic compounds, but in addition relates potency to the rate of the response for each concentration of the compound tested, which is important for understanding the mechanism of compound action. Moreover, real-time display of cytotoxicity data by the RT-CES system allows for calculation of real-time 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) values or determination of optimal IC(50) value. In summary, the RT-CES system provides high content and information-rich data that are beyond the scope of single-point assays.

  10. Atomic Force Microscopy Measurements of the Mechanical Properties of Cell Walls on Living Bacterial Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bailey, Richard; Mullin, Nic; Turner, Robert; Foster, Simon; Hobbs, Jamie

    2014-03-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a major cause of infection in humans, including the Methicillin resistant strain, MRSA. However, very little is known about the mechanical properties of these cells. Our investigations use AFM to examine live S. aureus cells to quantify mechanical properties. These were explored using force spectroscopy with different trigger forces, allowing the properties to be extracted at different indentation depths. A value for the cell wall stiffness has been extracted, along with a second, higher value which is found upon indenting at higher forces. This higher value drops as the cells are exposed to high salt, sugar and detergent concentrations, implying that this measurement contains a contribution from the internal turgor pressure. We have monitored these properties as the cells progress through the cell cycle. Force maps were taken over the cells at different stages of the growth process to identify changes in the mechanics throughout the progression of growth and division. The effect of Oxacillin has also been studied, to better understand its mechanism of action. Finally mutant strains of S. aureus and a second species Bacillus subtilis have been used to link the mechanical properties of the cell walls with the chain lengths and substructures involved.

  11. The effects of adiponectin and leptin on human endothelial cell proliferation: a live-cell study.

    PubMed

    Alvarez, Granada; Visitación Bartolomé, M; Miana, María; Jurado-López, Raquel; Martín, Ruben; Zuluaga, Pilar; Martinez-Martinez, Ernesto; Nieto, M Luisa; Alvarez-Sala, Luis A; Millán, Jesús; Lahera, Vicente; Cachofeiro, Victoria

    2012-01-01

    The effect of adiponectin and leptin on the proliferation of the human microvascular endothelial cell line (HMEC-1) was studied in the absence or presence of fetal bovine serum (FBS). The participation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt (PI-3K/Akt) pathways in this effect were evaluated. We studied the effect of both adipokines on the motility, mitosis, proliferation and cell death processes of HMEC-1 cells using live-cell imaging techniques. Adiponectin but not leptin further increased the proliferative effect induced by FBS on HMEC-1. This effect seems to be the consequence of an increase in the mitotic index in adiponectin-treated cells when compared to untreated ones. The presence of either the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inhibitor (PD98059), or PI-3K inhibitor (LY294002), reduced the effect of adiponectin in a dose-dependent manner. Neither adipokine was able to affect HMEC-1 proliferation in FBS-free conditions. Duration of mitosis, cell motility and the cell death process were similar in all conditions. These data suggest that adiponectin and leptin exert different effects on endothelial cell function. Adiponectin was able to potentiate proliferation of HMEC-1. This effect involves the activation of both PI3-K/Akt and ERK/MAPK pathways. However, it seems to exert minimal effects on HMEC-1 function in the case of leptin.

  12. Stem Cells toward the Future: The Space Challenge

    PubMed Central

    Bradamante, Silvia; Barenghi, Livia; Maier, Jeanette A.M.

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience weightlessness-induced bone loss due to an unbalanced process of bone remodeling that involves bone mesenchymal stem cells (bMSCs), as well as osteoblasts, osteocytes, and osteoclasts. The effects of microgravity on osteo-cells have been extensively studied, but it is only recently that consideration has been given to the role of bone MSCs. These live in adult bone marrow niches, are characterized by their self-renewal and multipotent differentiation capacities, and the published data indicate that they may lead to interesting returns in the biomedical/bioengineering fields. This review describes the published findings concerning bMSCs exposed to simulated/real microgravity, mainly concentrating on how mechanosignaling, mechanotransduction and oxygen influence their proliferation, senescence and differentiation. A comprehensive understanding of bMSC behavior in microgravity and their role in preventing bone loss will be essential for entering the future age of long-lasting, manned space exploration. PMID:25370198

  13. Stem Cells toward the Future: The Space Challenge.

    PubMed

    Bradamante, Silvia; Barenghi, Livia; Maier, Jeanette A M

    2014-05-30

    Astronauts experience weightlessness-induced bone loss due to an unbalanced process of bone remodeling that involves bone mesenchymal stem cells (bMSCs), as well as osteoblasts, osteocytes, and osteoclasts. The effects of microgravity on osteo-cells have been extensively studied, but it is only recently that consideration has been given to the role of bone MSCs. These live in adult bone marrow niches, are characterized by their self-renewal and multipotent differentiation capacities, and the published data indicate that they may lead to interesting returns in the biomedical/bioengineering fields. This review describes the published findings concerning bMSCs exposed to simulated/real microgravity, mainly concentrating on how mechanosignaling, mechanotransduction and oxygen influence their proliferation, senescence and differentiation. A comprehensive understanding of bMSC behavior in microgravity and their role in preventing bone loss will be essential for entering the future age of long-lasting, manned space exploration.

  14. Stem cells in stroke treatment: the promise and the challenges.

    PubMed

    Sinden, John D; Muir, Keith W

    2012-07-01

    Stroke, for some years now the neglected major indication in the pharmaceutical development cupboard, has recently become one of the hot areas for stem cell therapy development. This is driven by better understanding of potential therapeutic opportunities both in the acute and chronic phases and the launch of a series of new early phase clinical trials in a number of countries, driven by positive data in relevant animal models. In addition, the impetus for stem cell product development is motivated by patient demand, with thousands of victims seeking unproven treatments abroad. This article looks at the many challenges facing the development of a stem cell therapy for stroke. These range from product characterization and banking, through nonclinical safety and efficacy to the regulatory requirements for starting patient trials and beyond to maximizing value from carefully designed efficacy trials.

  15. Stem cell approaches in psychiatry - challenges and opportunities

    PubMed Central

    Benninghoff, Jens

    2009-01-01

    Exploring stem ceils is a fascinating task, especially in a discipline where the use of stem cells seems far-fetched at first glance, as is the case in psychiatry. In this article we would like to provide a brief overview of the current situation in relation to the treatment of mental diseases. For reasons that we will explain, this review will focus on affective disorders. The following section will give a more detailed account of stem-cell biology, including current basic science approaches presenting in-vivo andin-vitro techniques. The final part will then look into future perspectives of using these stem cells to cure mental illnesses, and discuss the related challenges and opportunities. PMID:20135897

  16. Clarification of mural cell coverage of vascular endothelial cells by live imaging of zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Ando, Koji; Fukuhara, Shigetomo; Izumi, Nanae; Nakajima, Hiroyuki; Fukui, Hajime; Kelsh, Robert N.; Mochizuki, Naoki

    2016-01-01

    Mural cells (MCs) consisting of vascular smooth muscle cells and pericytes cover the endothelial cells (ECs) to regulate vascular stability and homeostasis. Here, we clarified the mechanism by which MCs develop and cover ECs by generating transgenic zebrafish lines that allow live imaging of MCs and by lineage tracing in vivo. To cover cranial vessels, MCs derived from either neural crest cells or mesoderm emerged around the preformed EC tubes, proliferated and migrated along EC tubes. During their migration, the MCs moved forward by extending their processes along the inter-EC junctions, suggesting a role for inter-EC junctions as a scaffold for MC migration. In the trunk vasculature, MCs derived from mesoderm covered the ventral side of the dorsal aorta (DA), but not the posterior cardinal vein. Furthermore, the MCs migrating from the DA or emerging around intersegmental vessels (ISVs) preferentially covered arterial ISVs rather than venous ISVs, indicating that MCs mostly cover arteries during vascular development. Thus, live imaging and lineage tracing enabled us to clarify precisely how MCs cover the EC tubes and to identify the origins of MCs. PMID:26952986

  17. Viscoelastic properties of cell walls of single living plant cells determined by dynamic nanoindentation.

    PubMed

    Hayot, Céline M; Forouzesh, Elham; Goel, Ashwani; Avramova, Zoya; Turner, Joseph A

    2012-04-01

    Plant development results from controlled cell divisions, structural modifications, and reorganizations of the cell wall. Thereby, regulation of cell wall behaviour takes place at multiple length scales involving compositional and architectural aspects in addition to various developmental and/or environmental factors. The physical properties of the primary wall are largely determined by the nature of the complex polymer network, which exhibits time-dependent behaviour representative of viscoelastic materials. Here, a dynamic nanoindentation technique is used to measure the time-dependent response and the viscoelastic behaviour of the cell wall in single living cells at a micron or sub-micron scale. With this approach, significant changes in storage (stiffness) and loss (loss of energy) moduli are captured among the tested cells. The results reveal hitherto unknown differences in the viscoelastic parameters of the walls of same-age similarly positioned cells of the Arabidopsis ecotypes (Col 0 and Ws 2). The technique is also shown to be sensitive enough to detect changes in cell wall properties in cells deficient in the activity of the chromatin modifier ATX1. Extensive computational modelling of the experimental measurements (i.e. modelling the cell as a viscoelastic pressure vessel) is used to analyse the influence of the wall thickness, as well as the turgor pressure, at the positions of our measurements. By combining the nanoDMA technique with finite element simulations quantifiable measurements of the viscoelastic properties of plant cell walls are achieved. Such techniques are expected to find broader applications in quantifying the influence of genetic, biological, and environmental factors on the nanoscale mechanical properties of the cell wall.

  18. Viscoelastic properties of cell walls of single living plant cells determined by dynamic nanoindentation

    PubMed Central

    Hayot, Céline M.; Forouzesh, Elham; Goel, Ashwani; Avramova, Zoya; Turner, Joseph A.

    2012-01-01

    Plant development results from controlled cell divisions, structural modifications, and reorganizations of the cell wall. Thereby, regulation of cell wall behaviour takes place at multiple length scales involving compositional and architectural aspects in addition to various developmental and/or environmental factors. The physical properties of the primary wall are largely determined by the nature of the complex polymer network, which exhibits time-dependent behaviour representative of viscoelastic materials. Here, a dynamic nanoindentation technique is used to measure the time-dependent response and the viscoelastic behaviour of the cell wall in single living cells at a micron or sub-micron scale. With this approach, significant changes in storage (stiffness) and loss (loss of energy) moduli are captured among the tested cells. The results reveal hitherto unknown differences in the viscoelastic parameters of the walls of same-age similarly positioned cells of the Arabidopsis ecotypes (Col 0 and Ws 2). The technique is also shown to be sensitive enough to detect changes in cell wall properties in cells deficient in the activity of the chromatin modifier ATX1. Extensive computational modelling of the experimental measurements (i.e. modelling the cell as a viscoelastic pressure vessel) is used to analyse the influence of the wall thickness, as well as the turgor pressure, at the positions of our measurements. By combining the nanoDMA technique with finite element simulations quantifiable measurements of the viscoelastic properties of plant cell walls are achieved. Such techniques are expected to find broader applications in quantifying the influence of genetic, biological, and environmental factors on the nanoscale mechanical properties of the cell wall. PMID:22291130

  19. Long-term staining of live Merkel cells with FM dyes.

    PubMed

    Fukuda, Jun; Ishimine, Hisako; Masaki, Yoshinori

    2003-03-01

    Live Merkel cells in the skin and hair follicles are known to incorporate a fluorescence dye, quinacrine, which has been utilized to identify and dissect the cells for experiments. Quinacrine fluorescence of the cells is, however, quickly lost and quinacrine-stained Merkel cells soon become difficult to identify in tissue culture. To find dyes that remain in the cells for a long period of time, we tested many fluorescence dyes and found that FM dyes (such as FM1-43) are useful markers for live Merkel cells. In the rat footpad skin, FM1-43 was shown to stain 95% of live Merkel cells that were already stained with quinacrine. FM4-64 stained 98% of quinacrine-stained Merkel cells. Merkel cells in sinus hair follicles were also stained with FM dyes. The fluorescence intensity of FM dyes was stronger than that of quinacrine, and the shape of the cells was more distinct in the FM-dye-stained cells. To test how long FM dyes remain in live cells, FM-dye-stained Merkel cells in hair follicles were embedded in collagen gel and were cultured in a serum-free medium. FM-dye-stained cells were easily identified even after 7 days of culture. During the culture, Merkel cells changed their shape, moved in the preparation and tended to aggregate on the surface. We conclude that FM dyes are powerful tools for tracing live Merkel cells in in vitro experiments. Moreover, the finding that Merkel cells incorporate FM dyes suggests that vesicles in the cells are likely to have mechanisms of recycling in a manner similar to those in neurons and secretory cells.

  20. Solvatochromic Nile Red probes with FRET quencher reveal lipid order heterogeneity in living and apoptotic cells.

    PubMed

    Kreder, Rémy; Pyrshev, Kyrylo A; Darwich, Zeinab; Kucherak, Oleksandr A; Mély, Yves; Klymchenko, Andrey S

    2015-06-19

    Detecting and imaging lipid microdomains (rafts) in cell membranes remain a challenge despite intensive research in the field. Two types of fluorescent probes are used for this purpose: one specifically labels a given phase (liquid ordered, Lo, or liquid disordered, Ld), while the other, being environment-sensitive (solvatochromic), stains the two phases in different emission colors. Here, we combined the two approaches by designing a phase-sensitive probe of the Ld phase and a quencher of the Ld phase. The former is an analogue of the recently developed Nile Red-based probe NR12S, bearing a bulky hydrophobic chain (bNR10S), while the latter is based on Black Hole Quencher-2 designed as bNR10S (bQ10S). Fluorescence spectroscopy of large unilamellar vesicles and microscopy of giant vesicles showed that the bNR10S probe can partition specifically into the Ld phase, while bQ10S can specifically quench the NR12S probe in the Ld phase so that only its fraction in the Lo phase remains fluorescent. Thus, the toolkit of two probes with quencher can specifically target Ld and Lo phases and identify their lipid order from the emission color. Application of this toolkit in living cells (HeLa, CHO, and 293T cell lines) revealed heterogeneity in the cell plasma membranes, observed as distinct probe environments close to the Lo and Ld phases of model membranes. In HeLa cells undergoing apoptosis, our toolkit showed the formation of separate domains of the Ld-like phase in the form of blebs. The developed tools open new possibilities in lipid raft research.

  1. Stability of organic solar cells: challenges and strategies.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Pei; Zhan, Xiaowei

    2016-05-03

    Organic solar cells (OSCs) present some advantages, such as simple preparation, light weight, low cost and large-area flexible fabrication, and have attracted much attention in recent years. Although the power conversion efficiencies have exceeded 10%, the inferior device stability still remains a great challenge. In this review, we summarize the factors limiting the stability of OSCs, such as metastable morphology, diffusion of electrodes and buffer layers, oxygen and water, irradiation, heating and mechanical stress, and survey recent progress in strategies to increase the stability of OSCs, such as material design, device engineering of active layers, employing inverted geometry, optimizing buffer layers, using stable electrodes and encapsulation. Some research areas of device stability that may deserve further attention are also discussed to help readers understand the challenges and opportunities in achieving high efficiency and high stability of OSCs towards future industrial manufacture.

  2. Langerin negative dendritic cells promote potent CD8+ T-cell priming by skin delivery of live adenovirus vaccine microneedle arrays

    PubMed Central

    Bachy, Veronique; Hervouet, Catherine; Becker, Pablo D.; Chorro, Laurent; Carlin, Leo M.; Herath, Shanthi; Papagatsias, Timos; Barbaroux, Jean-Baptiste; Oh, Sea-Jin; Benlahrech, Adel; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Dickson, George; Patterson, Steven; Kwon, Sung-Yun; Geissmann, Frederic; Klavinskis, Linda S.

    2013-01-01

    Stabilization of virus protein structure and nucleic acid integrity is challenging yet essential to preserve the transcriptional competence of live recombinant viral vaccine vectors in the absence of a cold chain. When coupled with needle-free skin delivery, such a platform would address an unmet need in global vaccine coverage against HIV and other global pathogens. Herein, we show that a simple dissolvable microneedle array (MA) delivery system preserves the immunogenicity of vaccines encoded by live recombinant human adenovirus type 5 (rAdHu5). Specifically, dried rAdHu5 MA immunization induced CD8+ T-cell expansion and multifunctional cytokine responses equipotent with conventional injectable routes of immunization. Intravital imaging demonstrated MA cargo distributed both in the epidermis and dermis, with acquisition by CD11c+ dendritic cells (DCs) in the dermis. The MA immunizing properties were attributable to CD11c+ MHCIIhi CD8αneg epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAMneg) CD11b+ langerin (Lang; CD207)neg DCs, but neither Langerhans cells nor Lang+ DCs were required for CD8+ T-cell priming. This study demonstrates an important technical advance for viral vaccine vectors progressing to the clinic and provides insights into the mechanism of CD8+ T-cell priming by live rAdHu5 MAs. PMID:23386724

  3. The Challenges of Living with Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Summary of a Summit on Patient and Healthcare Provider Perspectives.

    PubMed

    Bray, Judith; Fernandes, Aida; Nguyen, Geoffrey C; Otley, Anthony R; Heatherington, Joan; Stretton, Jennifer; Bollegala, Natasha; Benchimol, Eric I

    2016-01-01

    Canada has one of the highest rates of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and the disease represents a significant health, social, and economic burden. There is currently no cure for IBD, although earlier diagnosis and new therapies have improved the overall health outcomes and quality of life for patients. Crohn's and Colitis Canada is Canada's only national, volunteer-based charity dedicated to finding cures for IBD and improving the lives of those affected, through research, education, patient programs, advocacy, and increased awareness. On April 30, 2015, Crohn's and Colitis Canada hosted the "Patient and Healthcare Professional Summit on the Burden of Disease in IBD" to obtain a deeper understanding of the unmet needs of IBD patients and their caregivers. Through personal vignettes, patients articulated a pressing need to increase understanding of the challenges faced by people suffering from IBD among both health care professionals and the general public, develop best practices for navigating life transitions and addressing the unique challenges faced by children with IBD, and provide equitable access to appropriate, effective, and affordable treatments. The recommendations that emerged from the summit will inform about efforts to increase public awareness, inform about advocacy strategies, and contribute to the development of research priorities.

  4. Evaluation of eight live attenuated vaccine candidates for protection against challenge with virulent Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis in mice.

    PubMed

    Bannantine, John P; Everman, Jamie L; Rose, Sasha J; Babrak, Lmar; Katani, Robab; Barletta, Raúl G; Talaat, Adel M; Gröhn, Yrjö T; Chang, Yung-Fu; Kapur, Vivek; Bermudez, Luiz E

    2014-01-01

    Johne's disease is caused by Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP), which results in serious economic losses worldwide in farmed livestock such as cattle, sheep, and goats. To control this disease, an effective vaccine with minimal adverse effects is needed. In order to identify a live vaccine for Johne's disease, we evaluated eight attenuated mutant strains of MAP using a C57BL/6 mouse model. The persistence of the vaccine candidates was measured at 6, 12, and 18 weeks post vaccination. Only strains 320, 321, and 329 colonized both the liver and spleens up until the 12-week time point. The remaining five mutants showed no survival in those tissues, indicating their complete attenuation in the mouse model. The candidate vaccine strains demonstrated different levels of protection based on colonization of the challenge strain in liver and spleen tissues at 12 and 18 weeks post vaccination. Based on total MAP burden in both tissues at both time points, strain 315 (MAP1566::Tn5370) was the most protective whereas strain 318 (intergenic Tn5367 insertion between MAP0282c and MAP0283c) had the most colonization. Mice vaccinated with an undiluted commercial vaccine preparation displayed the highest bacterial burden as well as enlarged spleens indicative of a strong infection. Selected vaccine strains that showed promise in the mouse model were moved forward into a goat challenge model. The results suggest that the mouse trial, as conducted, may have a relatively poor predictive value for protection in a ruminant host such as goats.

  5. The Challenges of Living with Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Summary of a Summit on Patient and Healthcare Provider Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Bray, Judith; Fernandes, Aida; Nguyen, Geoffrey C.; Otley, Anthony R.; Heatherington, Joan; Stretton, Jennifer; Bollegala, Natasha; Benchimol, Eric I.

    2016-01-01

    Canada has one of the highest rates of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and the disease represents a significant health, social, and economic burden. There is currently no cure for IBD, although earlier diagnosis and new therapies have improved the overall health outcomes and quality of life for patients. Crohn's and Colitis Canada is Canada's only national, volunteer-based charity dedicated to finding cures for IBD and improving the lives of those affected, through research, education, patient programs, advocacy, and increased awareness. On April 30, 2015, Crohn's and Colitis Canada hosted the “Patient and Healthcare Professional Summit on the Burden of Disease in IBD” to obtain a deeper understanding of the unmet needs of IBD patients and their caregivers. Through personal vignettes, patients articulated a pressing need to increase understanding of the challenges faced by people suffering from IBD among both health care professionals and the general public, develop best practices for navigating life transitions and addressing the unique challenges faced by children with IBD, and provide equitable access to appropriate, effective, and affordable treatments. The recommendations that emerged from the summit will inform about efforts to increase public awareness, inform about advocacy strategies, and contribute to the development of research priorities. PMID:27446878

  6. Dendritic cell targeted vaccines: Recent progresses and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Pengfei; Liu, Xinsheng; Sun, Yuefeng; Zhou, Peng; Wang, Yonglu; Zhang, Yongguang

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Dendritic cells (DCs) are known to be a set of morphology, structure and function of heterogeneous professional antigen presenting cells (APCs), as well as the strongest functional antigen presenting cells, which can absorb, process and present antigens. As the key regulators of innate and adaptive immune responses, DCs are at the center of the immune system and capable of interacting with both B cells and T cells, thereby manipulating the humoral and cellular immune responses. DCs provide an essential link between the innate and adaptive immunity, and the strong immune activation function of DCs and their properties of natural adjuvants, make them a valuable target for antigen delivery. Targeting antigens to DC-specific endocytic receptors in combination with the relevant antibodies or ligands along with immunostimulatory adjuvants has been recently recognized as a promising strategy for designing an effective vaccine that elicits a strong and durable T cell response against intracellular pathogens and cancer. This opinion article provides a brief summary of the rationales, superiorities and challenges of existing DC-targeting approaches. PMID:26513200

  7. Microtubules in Plant Cells: Strategies and Methods for Immunofluorescence, Transmission Electron Microscopy and Live Cell Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Celler, Katherine; Fujita, Miki; Kawamura, Eiko; Ambrose, Chris; Herburger, Klaus; Wasteneys, Geoffrey O.

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules are required throughout plant development for a wide variety of processes, and different strategies have evolved to visualize and analyze them. This chapter provides specific methods that can be used to analyze microtubule organization and dynamic properties in plant systems and summarizes the advantages and limitations for each technique. We outline basic methods for preparing samples for immunofluorescence labelling, including an enzyme-based permeabilization method, and a freeze-shattering method, which generates microfractures in the cell wall to provide antibodies access to cells in cuticle-laden aerial organs such as leaves. We discuss current options for live cell imaging of MTs with fluorescently tagged proteins (FPs), and provide chemical fixation, high pressure freezing/freeze substitution, and post-fixation staining protocols for preserving MTs for transmission electron microscopy and tomography. PMID:26498784

  8. Globally visualizing the microtubule-dependent transport behaviors of influenza virus in live cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shu-Lin; Zhang, Li-Juan; Wang, Zhi-Gang; Zhang, Zhi-Ling; Wu, Qiu-Mei; Sun, En-Ze; Shi, Yun-Bo; Pang, Dai-Wen

    2014-04-15

    Understanding the microtubule-dependent behaviors of viruses in live cells is very meaningful for revealing the mechanisms of virus infection and endocytosis. Herein, we used a quantum dots-based single-particle tracking technique to dynamically and globally visualize the microtubule-dependent transport behaviors of influenza virus in live cells. We found that the intersection configuration of microtubules can interfere with the transport behaviors of the virus in live cells, which lead to the changing and long-time pausing of the transport behavior of viruses. Our results revealed that most of the viruses moved along straight microtubules rapidly and unidirectionally from the cell periphery to the microtubule organizing center (MTOC) near the bottom of the cell, and the viruses were confined in the grid of microtubules near the top of the cell and at the MTOC near the bottom of the cell. These results provided deep insights into the influence of entire microtubule geometry on the virus infection.

  9. Microfabricated Electrochemical Cell-Based Biosensors for Analysis of Living Cells In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jun; Wu, Chengxiong; Hu, Ning; Zhou, Jie; Du, Liping; Wang, Ping

    2012-01-01

    Cellular biochemical parameters can be used to reveal the physiological and functional information of various cells. Due to demonstrated high accuracy and non-invasiveness, electrochemical detection methods have been used for cell-based investigation. When combined with improved biosensor design and advanced measurement systems, the on-line biochemical analysis of living cells in vitro has been applied for biological mechanism study, drug screening and even environmental monitoring. In recent decades, new types of miniaturized electrochemical biosensor are emerging with the development of microfabrication technology. This review aims to give an overview of the microfabricated electrochemical cell-based biosensors, such as microelectrode arrays (MEA), the electric cell-substrate impedance sensing (ECIS) technique, and the light addressable potentiometric sensor (LAPS). The details in their working principles, measurement systems, and applications in cell monitoring are covered. Driven by the need for high throughput and multi-parameter detection proposed by biomedicine, the development trends of electrochemical cell-based biosensors are also introduced, including newly developed integrated biosensors, and the application of nanotechnology and microfluidic technology. PMID:25585708

  10. Thermal effects in IR-laser-irradiated living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meier, Thomas H.; Rueck, Angelika C.; Scalfi-Happ, Claudia; Hug, Hubert; Schneider, Marion E.

    2003-10-01

    Irradiation of cell-layers with focussed 2.8 μm ir-laser allows to control the cell temperature from room temperature up to 100°C. Temperatures were calculated for a cell culture model and verified experimentally by thermal mapping of the cell-surrounding medium by means of thermochromic liquid crystals (TLC). Irradiation power and time were varied and associated biological effects like necrosis and apoptosis were observed with respect to the irradiation dosis.

  11. Stopping biological time: The freezing of living cells

    SciTech Connect

    Mazur, P.

    1987-01-01

    The fundamental physical-chemical events that occur during the freezing and thawing of cells are outlined and the manner in which cell permeability determines the response of the cell to freezing is discussed both in terms of physical response and in terms of survival. 40 refs., 12 figs.

  12. Rewiring Cells: Synthetic biology as a tool to interrogate the organizational principles of living systems

    PubMed Central

    Bashor, Caleb J.; Horwitz, Andrew A.; Peisajovich, Sergio G.; Lim, Wendell A.

    2010-01-01

    The living cell is an incredibly complex entity, and the goal of predictively and quantitatively understanding its function is one of the next great challenges in biology. Much of what we know about the cell concerns its constituent parts, but to a great extent, we have yet to decode how these parts are organized to yield complex physiological function. Classically, we have learned about the organization of cellular networks by perturbing them through genetic or chemical means. The emerging discipline of synthetic biology offers an additional, powerful way to study systems. By rearranging the parts that comprise existing networks, we can gain valuable insight into the hierarchical logic of the networks and identify the modular building blocks that evolution uses to generate innovative function. Additionally, by building minimal “toy” networks, one can systematically explore the relationship between network space (linkages and parameters) and functional space (the system's physiological behavior). Here, we outline recent work that uses synthetic biology approaches to investigate the organization and function of cellular networks, and describe a vision for a synthetic biology toolkit that could be used to interrogate the design principles of diverse systems. PMID:20192780

  13. A two-photon ratiometric fluorescence probe for Cupric Ions in Live Cells and Tissues

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Anwei; Ding, Changqin; Tian, Yang

    2013-01-01

    Development of sensitive and selective probes for cupric ions (Cu2+) at cell and tissue level is a challenging work for progress in understanding the biological effects of Cu2+. Here, we report a ratiometric two-photon probe for Cu2+ based on the organic-inorganic hybrids of graphene quantum dots (GQDs) and Nile Blue dye. Meanwhile, Cu-free derivative of copper-zinc superoxide dismutase (SOD) – E2Zn2SOD is designed as the unique receptor for Cu2+ and conjugated on the surface of GQDs. This probe shows a blue-to-yellow color change in repose to Cu2+, good selectivity, low cytotoxicity, long-term photostability, and insensitivity to pH over the biologically relevant pH range. The developed probe allows the direct visualization of Cu2+ levels in live cells as well as in deep-tissues at 90–180 μm depth through the use of two-photon microscopy. Furthermore, the effect of ascorbic acid is also evaluated on intracellular Cu2+ binding to E2Zn2SOD by this probe. PMID:24121717

  14. Extracting Diffusive States of Rho GTPase in Live Cells: Towards In Vivo Biochemistry.

    PubMed

    Koo, Peter K; Weitzman, Matthew; Sabanaygam, Chandran R; van Golen, Kenneth L; Mochrie, Simon G J

    2015-10-01

    Resolving distinct biochemical interaction states when analyzing the trajectories of diffusing proteins in live cells on an individual basis remains challenging because of the limited statistics provided by the relatively short trajectories available experimentally. Here, we introduce a novel, machine-learning based classification methodology, which we call perturbation expectation-maximization (pEM), that simultaneously analyzes a population of protein trajectories to uncover the system of diffusive behaviors which collectively result from distinct biochemical interactions. We validate the performance of pEM in silico and demonstrate that pEM is capable of uncovering the proper number of underlying diffusive states with an accurate characterization of their diffusion properties. We then apply pEM to experimental protein trajectories of Rho GTPases, an integral regulator of cytoskeletal dynamics and cellular homeostasis, in vivo via single particle tracking photo-activated localization microscopy. Remarkably, pEM uncovers 6 distinct diffusive states conserved across various Rho GTPase family members. The variability across family members in the propensities for each diffusive state reveals non-redundant roles in the activation states of RhoA and RhoC. In a resting cell, our results support a model where RhoA is constantly cycling between activation states, with an imbalance of rates favoring an inactive state. RhoC, on the other hand, remains predominantly inactive.

  15. Rewiring cells: synthetic biology as a tool to interrogate the organizational principles of living systems.

    PubMed

    Bashor, Caleb J; Horwitz, Andrew A; Peisajovich, Sergio G; Lim, Wendell A

    2010-01-01

    The living cell is an incredibly complex entity, and the goal of predictively and quantitatively understanding its function is one of the next great challenges in biology. Much of what we know about the cell concerns its constituent parts, but to a great extent we have yet to decode how these parts are organized to yield complex physiological function. Classically, we have learned about the organization of cellular networks by disrupting them through genetic or chemical means. The emerging discipline of synthetic biology offers an additional, powerful approach to study systems. By rearranging the parts that comprise existing networks, we can gain valuable insight into the hierarchical logic of the networks and identify the modular building blocks that evolution uses to generate innovative function. In addition, by building minimal toy networks, one can systematically explore the relationship between network structure and function. Here, we outline recent work that uses synthetic biology approaches to investigate the organization and function of cellular networks, and describe a vision for a synthetic biology toolkit that could be used to interrogate the design principles of diverse systems.

  16. A Morphological identification cell cytotoxicity assay using cytoplasm-localized fluorescent probe (CLFP) to distinguish living and dead cells.

    PubMed

    Lai, Fangfang; Shen, Zhengwei; Wen, Hui; Chen, Jialing; Zhang, Xiang; Lin, Ping; Yin, Dali; Cui, Huaqing; Chen, Xiaoguang

    2017-01-08

    Cell cytotoxicity assays include cell activity assays and morphological identification assays. Currently, all frequently used cytotoxicity assays belong to cell activity assays but suffer from detection limitations. Morphological identification of cell death remains as the gold standard, although the method is difficult to scale up. At present there is no generally accepted morphological identification based cell cytotoxicity assay. In this study, we applied previous developed cell cytoplasm-localized fluorescent probe (CLFP) to display cell morphologies. Under fluorescence microscopy, the fluorescence morphology and intensity of living cells are distinct from dead cells. Based on these characters we extracted the images of living cells from series of samples via computational analysis. Thus, a novel cell morphological identification cytotoxicity assay (CLFP assay) is developed. The performance of the CLFP assay was similar to cell activity assay (MTT assay), but the accuracy of the CLFP assay was superior when measuring the cytotoxicity of active compounds.

  17. Vaccination with a modified-live bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) type 1a vaccine completely protected calves against challenge with BVDV type 1b strains.

    PubMed

    Xue, Wenzhi; Mattick, Debra; Smith, Linda; Umbaugh, Jerry; Trigo, Emilio

    2010-12-10

    Vaccination plays a significant role in the control of bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) infection and spread. Recent studies revealed that type 1b is the predominant BVDV type 1 subgenotype, representing more than 75% of field isolates of BVDV-1. However, nearly all current, commercially available BVDV type 1 vaccines contain BVDV-1a strains. Previous studies have indicated that anti-BVDV sera, induced by BVDV-1a viruses, show less neutralization activity to BVDV-1b isolates than type 1a. Therefore, it is critically important to evaluate BVDV-1a vaccines in their ability to prevent BVDV-1b infection in calves. In current studies, calves were vaccinated subcutaneously, intradermally or intranasally with a single dose of a multivalent, modified-live viral vaccine containing a BVDV-1a strain, and were challenged with differing BVDV-1b strains to determine the efficacy and duration of immunity of the vaccine against these heterologous virus strains. Vaccinated calves, in all administration routes, were protected from respiratory disease caused by the BVDV-1b viruses, as indicated by significantly fewer clinical signs, lower rectal temperatures, reduced viral shedding and greater white blood cell counts than non-vaccinated control animals. The BVDV-1a vaccine elicited efficacious protection in calves against each BVDV-1b challenge strain, with a duration of immunity of at least 6 months.

  18. Model system for plant cell biology: GFP imaging in living onion epidermal cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scott, A.; Wyatt, S.; Tsou, P. L.; Robertson, D.; Allen, N. S.

    1999-01-01

    The ability to visualize organelle localization and dynamics is very useful in studying cellular physiological events. Until recently, this has been accomplished using a variety of staining methods. However, staining can give inaccurate information due to nonspecific staining, diffusion of the stain or through toxic effects. The ability to target green fluorescent protein (GFP) to various organelles allows for specific labeling of organelles in vivo. The disadvantages of GFP thus far have been the time and money involved in developing stable transformants or maintaining cell cultures for transient expression. In this paper, we present a rapid transient expression system using onion epidermal peels. We have localized GFP to various cellular compartments (including the cell wall) to illustrate the utility of this method and to visualize dynamics of these compartments. The onion epidermis has large, living, transparent cells in a monolayer, making them ideal for visualizing GFP. This method is easy and inexpensive, and it allows for testing of new GFP fusion proteins in a living tissue to determine deleterious effects and the ability to express before stable transformants are attempted.

  19. Prime-boost vaccination with heterologous live vectors encoding SIV gag and multimeric HIV-1 gp160 protein: efficacy against repeated mucosal R5 clade C SHIV challenges

    PubMed Central

    Lakhashe, Samir K.; Velu, Vijayakumar; Sciaranghella, Gaia; Siddappa, Nagadenahalli B.; DiPasquale, Janet M.; Hemashettar, Girish; Yoon, John K.; Rasmussen, Robert A.; Yang, Feng; Lee, Sandra J.; Montefiori, David C.; Novembre, Francis J.; Villinger, François; Amara, Rama Rao; Kahn, Maria; Hu, Shiu-Lok; Li, Sufen; Li, Zhongxia; Frankel, Fred R.; Robert-Guroff, Marjorie; Johnson, Welkin E.; Lieberman, Judy; Ruprecht, Ruth M.

    2011-01-01

    We sought to induce primate immunodeficiency virus-specific cellular and neutralizing antibody (nAb) responses in rhesus macaques (RM) through a bimodal vaccine approach. RM were immunized intragastrically (i.g.) with the live-attenuated Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) vector Lmdd-BdopSIVgag encoding SIVmac239 gag. SIV Gag-specific cellular responses were boosted by intranasal and intratracheal administration of replication-competent adenovirus (Ad5hr-SIVgag) encoding the same gag. To broaden antiviral immunity, the RM were immunized with multimeric HIV clade C (HIV-C) gp160 and HIV Tat. SIV Gag-specific cellular immune responses and HIV-1 nAb developed in some RM. The animals were challenged intrarectally with five low doses of R5 SHIV-1157ipEL-p, encoding a heterologous HIV-C Env (22.1% divergent to the Env immunogen). All five controls became viremic. One out of ten vaccinees was completely protected and another had low peak viremia. Sera from the completely and partially protected RM neutralized the challenge virus >90%; these RM also had strong SIV Gag-specific proliferation of CD8+ T cells. Peak and area under the curve of plasma viremia (during acute phase) among vaccinees was lower than for controls, but did not attain significance. The completely protected RM showed persistently low numbers of the α4β7-expressing CD4+ T cells; the latter have been implicated as preferential virus targets in-vivo. Thus, vaccine-induced immune responses and relatively lower numbers of potential target cells were associated with protection. PMID:21693155

  20. Quantitative Imaging of Single mRNA Splice Variants in Living Cells

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Kyuwan; Cui, Yi

    2015-01-01

    Alternative mRNA splicing is a fundamental process of gene regulation via the precise control of the post-transcriptional step that occurs before mRNA translation. Errors in RNA splicing have been known to correlate with different diseases; however, a key limitation is the lack of technologies for live cell monitoring and quantification to understand the process of alternative splicing. Here, we report a spectroscopic strategy for quantitative imaging of mRNA splice variants in living cells, using nanoplasmonic dimer antennas. The spatial and temporal distribution of three selected splice variants of the breast cancer susceptibility gene, BRCA1 were monitored at single copy resolution by measuring the hybridization dynamics of nanoplasmonic antennas targeting complementary mRNA sequences in live cells. Our study provides valuable insights on RNA and its transport in living cells, which has the potential to enhance our understanding of cellular protein complex, pharmacogenomics, genetic diagnosis, and gene therapies. PMID:24747838

  1. Water-soluble and fluorescent dendritic perylene bisimides for live-cell imaging.

    PubMed

    Gao, Baoxiang; Li, Hongxia; Liu, Hongmei; Zhang, Licui; Bai, Qianqian; Ba, Xinwu

    2011-04-07

    We prepared dendritic perylene bisimide probes with triblock structures: perylene bisimides fluorescence cores, branched oligo(glutamic acid)s and polyethylene glycol chains. These probes showed good water solubility, low cytotoxicity and strong fluorescence in live cells.

  2. Dissecting the Factors Affecting the Fluorescence Stability of Quantum Dots in Live Cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhi-Gang; Liu, Shu-Lin; Hu, Yuan-Jun; Tian, Zhi-Quan; Hu, Bin; Zhang, Zhi-Ling; Pang, Dai-Wen

    2016-04-06

    Labeling and imaging of live cells with quantum dots (QDs) has attracted great attention in the biomedical field over the past two decades. Maintenance of the fluorescence of QDs in a biological environment is crucial for performing long-term cell tracking to investigate the proliferation and functional evolution of cells. The cell-penetrating peptide transactivator of transcription (TAT) is a well-studied peptide to efficiently enhance the transmembrane delivery. Here, we used TAT peptide-conjugated QDs (TAT-QDs) as a model system to examine the fluorescence stability of QDs in live cells. By confocal microscopy, we found that TAT-QDs were internalized into cells by endocytosis, and transported into the cytoplasm via the mitochondria, Golgi apparatus, and lysosomes. More importantly, the fluorescence of TAT-QDs in live cells was decreased mainly by cell proliferation, and the low pH value in the lysosomes could also lower the fluorescence intensity of intracellular QDs. Quantitative analysis of the amount of QDs in the extracellular region and whole cells indicated that the exocytosis was not the primary cause of fluorescence decay of intracellular QDs. This work facilitates a better understanding of the fluorescence stability of QDs for cell imaging and long-term tracking in live cells. Also, it provides insights into the utility of TAT for transmembrane transportation, and the preparation and modification of QDs for cell imaging and tracking.

  3. Hyperpolarized 129Xe NMR signature of living biological cells.

    PubMed

    Boutin, Céline; Desvaux, Hervé; Carrière, Marie; Leteurtre, François; Jamin, Nadège; Boulard, Yves; Berthault, Patrick

    2011-12-01

    We show that the differentiation between internal and external compartments of various biological cells in suspension can be made via simple NMR spectra of hyperpolarized (129) Xe. The spectral separation between the signals of (129) Xe in these two compartments is already known for red blood cells, because of the strong interaction of the noble gas with hemoglobin. The observation of two separate peaks in the 200-ppm region can be seen with both eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells, some of which are not known to contain paramagnetic proteins in large quantities. Using different experiments in which the cells are lysed, swell or are blocked in G2 phase, we demonstrate that the low-field-shifted peak observed corresponds to xenon in the aqueous pool inside the cells and not in the membranes. The presence of this additional peak is a clear indication of cell integrity, and its integration allows the quantification of the total cell volume. The relaxation time of intracellular xenon is sufficiently long to open up promising perspectives for cell characterization. The exchange time between the inner and outer cell compartments (on the order of 30 ms) renders possible the targeting of intracellular receptors, whereas the observation of chemical shift variations represents a method of revealing the presence of toxic species in the cells.

  4. Tracking Single Cells in Live Animals Using a Photoconvertible Near-Infrared Cell Membrane Label

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Juwell; Runnels, Judith M.; Turcotte, Raphaël; Celso, Cristina Lo; Scadden, David T.; Strom, Terry B.; Lin, Charles P.

    2013-01-01

    We describe a novel photoconversion technique to track individual cells in vivo using a commercial lipophilic membrane dye, DiR. We show that DiR exhibits a permanent fluorescence emission shift (photoconversion) after light exposure and does not reacquire the original color over time. Ratiometric imaging can be used to distinguish photoconverted from non-converted cells with high sensitivity. Combining the use of this photoconvertible dye with intravital microscopy, we tracked the division of individual hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells within the calvarium bone marrow of live mice. We also studied the peripheral differentiation of individual T cells by tracking the gain or loss of FoxP3-GFP expression, a marker of the immune suppressive function of CD4+ T cells. With the near-infrared photoconvertible membrane dye, the entire visible spectral range is available for simultaneous use with other fluorescent proteins to monitor gene expression or to trace cell lineage commitment in vivo with high spatial and temporal resolution. PMID:23990881

  5. Optimizing gene transfer to conventional outflow cells in living mouse eyes.

    PubMed

    Li, G; Gonzalez, P; Camras, L J; Navarro, I; Qiu, J; Challa, P; Stamer, W D

    2013-04-01

    The mouse eye has physiological and genetic advantages to study conventional outflow function. However, its small size and shallow anterior chamber presents technical challenges to efficient intracameral delivery of genetic material to conventional outflow cells. The goal of this study was to optimize methods to overcome this technical hurdle, without damaging ocular structures or compromising outflow function. Gene targeting was monitored by immunofluorescence microscopy after transduction of adenovirus encoding green fluorescent protein driven by a CMV promoter. Guided by a micromanipulator and stereomicroscope, virus was delivered intracamerally to anesthetized mice by bolus injection using a 33 gauge needle attached to Hamilton syringe or infusion with glass micropipette connected to syringe pump. The total number of particles introduced remained constant, while volume of injected virus solution (3-10 μl) was varied for each method and time of infusion (3-40 min) tested. Outflow facility and intraocular pressure were monitored invasively using established techniques. Unlike bolus injections or slow infusions, introduction of virus intracamerally during rapid infusions (3 min) at any volume tested preferentially targeted trabecular meshwork and Schlemm's canal cells, with minimal transduction of neighboring cells. While infusions resulted in transient intraocular pressure spikes (commensurate with volume infused, Δ40-70 mmHg), eyes typically recovered within 60 min. Transduced eyes displayed normal outflow facility and tissue morphology 3-6 days after infusions. Taken together, fast infusion of virus solution in small volumes intracamerally is a novel and effective method to selectively deliver agents to conventional outflow cells in living mice.

  6. Sickle cell disease: management options and challenges in developing countries.

    PubMed

    Ansong, Daniel; Akoto, Alex Osei; Ocloo, Delaena; Ohene-Frempong, Kwaku

    2013-01-01

    Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is the most common genetic disorder of haemoglobin in sub-Saharan Africa. This commentary focuses on the management options available and the challenges that health care professionals in developing countries face in caring for patients with SCD. In a developing countries like Ghana, new-born screening is now about to be implemented on a national scale. Common and important morbidities associated with SCD are vaso-occlusive episodes, infections, Acute Chest Syndrome (ACS), Stroke and hip necrosis. Approaches to the management of these morbidities are far advanced in the developed countries. The differences in setting and resource limitations in developing countries bring challenges that have a major influence in management options in developing countries. Obviously clinicians in developing countries face challenges in managing SCD patients. However understanding the disease, its progression, and instituting the appropriate preventive methods are paramount in its management. Emphasis should be placed on early counselling, new-born screening, anti-microbial prophylaxis, vaccination against infections, and training of healthcare workers, patients and caregivers. These interventions are affordable in developing countries.

  7. Turbulence dissipation challenge: particle-in-cell simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roytershteyn, V.; Karimabadi, H.; Omelchenko, Y.; Germaschewski, K.

    2015-12-01

    We discuss application of three particle in cell (PIC) codes to the problems relevant to turbulence dissipation challenge. VPIC is a fully kinetic code extensively used to study a variety of diverse problems ranging from laboratory plasmas to astrophysics. PSC is a flexible fully kinetic code offering a variety of algorithms that can be advantageous to turbulence simulations, including high order particle shapes, dynamic load balancing, and ability to efficiently run on Graphics Processing Units (GPUs). Finally, HYPERS is a novel hybrid (kinetic ions+fluid electrons) code, which utilizes asynchronous time advance and a number of other advanced algorithms. We present examples drawn both from large-scale turbulence simulations and from the test problems outlined by the turbulence dissipation challenge. Special attention is paid to such issues as the small-scale intermittency of inertial range turbulence, mode content of the sub-proton range of scales, the formation of electron-scale current sheets and the role of magnetic reconnection, as well as numerical challenges of applying PIC codes to simulations of astrophysical turbulence.

  8. Population of Vibrational State of Carotenoid Molecules in Living Cells of Chlorella

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kinoshita, Shuichi; Hirata, Kuniko; Kushida, Takashi

    1980-07-01

    Stokes and anti-Stokes Raman spectra have been measured in living cells of Chlorella vulgaris as well as in chloroform, toluene, benzene and β-carotene. Population in the vibrational state has been determined by taking account of resonance Raman effect. The result shows that this population is well explained by thermal distribution even in the case of living biological cells, contrary to recently reported observation of some population enhancement. Possible experimental artifacts are discussed.

  9. Recent progress and challenges of organometal halide perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Liyan; Barrows, Alexander T.; Lidzey, David G.; Wang, Tao

    2016-02-01

    We review recent progress in the development of organometal halide perovskite solar cells. We discuss different compounds used to construct perovskite photoactive layers, as well as the optoelectronic properties of this system. The factors that affect the morphology of the perovskite active layer are explored, e.g. material composition, film deposition methods, casting solvent and various post-treatments. Different strategies are reviewed that have recently emerged to prepare high performing perovskite films, creating polycrystalline films having either large or small grain size. Devices that are constructed using meso-superstructured and planar architectures are summarized and the impact of the fabrication process on operational efficiency is discussed. Finally, important research challenges (hysteresis, thermal and moisture instability, mechanical flexibility, as well as the development of lead-free materials) in the development of perovskite solar cells are outlined and their potential solutions are discussed.

  10. Recent progress and challenges of organometal halide perovskite solar cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Liyan; Barrows, Alexander T; Lidzey, David G; Wang, Tao

    2016-02-01

    We review recent progress in the development of organometal halide perovskite solar cells. We discuss different compounds used to construct perovskite photoactive layers, as well as the optoelectronic properties of this system. The factors that affect the morphology of the perovskite active layer are explored, e.g. material composition, film deposition methods, casting solvent and various post-treatments. Different strategies are reviewed that have recently emerged to prepare high performing perovskite films, creating polycrystalline films having either large or small grain size. Devices that are constructed using meso-superstructured and planar architectures are summarized and the impact of the fabrication process on operational efficiency is discussed. Finally, important research challenges (hysteresis, thermal and moisture instability, mechanical flexibility, as well as the development of lead-free materials) in the development of perovskite solar cells are outlined and their potential solutions are discussed.

  11. Stem cell researches in Brazil: present and future challenges.

    PubMed

    Zatz, Mayana

    2009-06-01

    A bill allowing researches with human embryonic stem cells has been approved by the Brazilian Congress, originally in 2005 and definitively by the Supreme Court in 2008. However, several years before, investigations in Brazil with adult stem cells in vitro in animal models as well as clinical trials, were started and are currently underway. Here, we will summarize the main findings and the challenges of going from bench to bed, focusing on heart, diabetes, cancer, craniofacial, and neuromuscular disorders. We also call attention to the importance of publishing negative results on experimental trials in scientific journals and websites. They are of great value to investigators in the field and may avoid the repeating of unsuccessful experiments. In addition, they could be referred to patients seeking information, aiming to protect them against financial and psychological harm.

  12. Nanoscale Optomechanical Actuators for Controlling Mechanotransduction in Living Cells

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zheng; Liu, Yang; Chang, Yuan; Seyf, Hamid Reza; Henry, Asegun; Mattheyses, Alexa L.; Yehl, Kevin; Zhang, Yun; Huang, Zhuangqun; Salaita, Khalid

    2015-01-01

    Herein we develop an approach for optically controlling receptor tension. This is achieved using optomechanical actuator nanoparticles that are controlled with non-invasive near-infrared light. Illumination leads to particle collapse, delivering piconewton forces to specific cell surface receptors with high spatial and temporal resolution. As a proof-of-concept, we applied optomechanical actuation to trigger integrin-based focal adhesion formation, cell protrusion and migration, as well as T cell receptor activation. PMID:26657558

  13. Poly(ethylene glycol) hydrogel microstructures encapsulating living cells.

    PubMed

    Koh, Won-Gun; Revzin, Alexander; Pishko, Michael V

    2002-04-02

    We present an easy and effective method for the encapsulation of cells inside PEG-based hydrogel microstructures fabricated using photolithography. High-density arrays of three-dimensional microstructures were created on substrates using this method. Mammalian cells were encapsulated in cylindrical hydrogel microstructures of 600 and 50 micrometers in diameter or in cubic hydrogel structures in microfluidic channels. Reducing lateral dimension of the individual hydrogel microstructure to 50 micrometers allowed us to isolate 1-3 cells per microstructure. Viability assays demonstrated that cells remained viable inside these hydrogels after encapsulation for up to 7 days.

  14. Poly(ethylene glycol) hydrogel microstructures encapsulating living cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koh, Won-Gun; Revzin, Alexander; Pishko, Michael V.

    2002-01-01

    We present an easy and effective method for the encapsulation of cells inside PEG-based hydrogel microstructures fabricated using photolithography. High-density arrays of three-dimensional microstructures were created on substrates using this method. Mammalian cells were encapsulated in cylindrical hydrogel microstructures of 600 and 50 micrometers in diameter or in cubic hydrogel structures in microfluidic channels. Reducing lateral dimension of the individual hydrogel microstructure to 50 micrometers allowed us to isolate 1-3 cells per microstructure. Viability assays demonstrated that cells remained viable inside these hydrogels after encapsulation for up to 7 days.

  15. [Expression of CD48 as a live marker to distinguish division of hematopoietic stem cells].

    PubMed

    Yang, Xin; Zhang, Yu; Peng, Lu-Yun; Pang, Ya-Kun; Dong, Fang; Ji, Qing; Xu, Jing; Cheng, Tao; Yuan, Wei-Ping; Gao, Ying-Dai

    2014-06-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells are capable of self-renewal or differentiation when they divide. Three types of cell divisions exist. A dividing stem cell may generate 2 new stem cells (symmetrical renewal division), or 2 differentiating cells (symmetrical differentiation division), or 1 cell of each type (asymmetrical division). This study was aimed to explore an efficient and stable method to distinguish the way of cell division in hematopoietic stem cells. Previous studies showed that the distribution of Numb in a cell could be used to distinguish the type of cell division in various kinds of cells. Therefore, the distribution of Numb protein was detected by immunofluorescence in mitotic CD48(-)CD150(+)LSK cells of mice exploring the relationship between Numb protein and centrosomes. Since CD48 positive marks the HSC that have lost the ability to reconstitute the blood system in mice, CD48 marker could be used to distinguish cell fate decision between self-renewal and differentiation as a living marker. In this study, the CD48(-)CD150(+)LSK cells were sorted from bone marrow cells of mice and the cells were directly labeled with Alexa Fluor (AF) 488-conjugated anti-CD48 antibody in living cultures. After 3 days, the percentage of AF488(+) cells was evaluated under microscope and by FACS. Then colony forming cell assay (CFC) was performed and the ability of cell proliferation were compared between AF488(+) and AF488(-) cells. The results showed that Numb could be used to distinguish different cell division types of hematopoietic stem cells, which was symmetrically or asymmetrically segregated in mitotic CD48(-)CD150(+)LSK cells. The self-labeled fluorochrome could be detected both by FACS as well as microscope. There were about 40% AF488(+) cells after 3 day-cultures in medium titrated with self-labeled AF 488-conjugated anti-CD48 antibody, and the results were consistent between confocal fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry analysis. The colony forming ability of

  16. Fast live-cell conventional fluorophore nanoscopy with ImageJ through super-resolution radial fluctuations

    PubMed Central

    Gustafsson, Nils; Culley, Siân; Ashdown, George; Owen, Dylan M.; Pereira, Pedro Matos; Henriques, Ricardo

    2016-01-01

    Despite significant progress, high-speed live-cell super-resolution studies remain limited to specialized optical setups, generally requiring intense phototoxic illumination. Here, we describe a new analytical approach, super-resolution radial fluctuations (SRRF), provided as a fast graphics processing unit-enabled ImageJ plugin. In the most challenging data sets for super-resolution, such as those obtained in low-illumination live-cell imaging with GFP, we show that SRRF is generally capable of achieving resolutions better than 150 nm. Meanwhile, for data sets similar to those obtained in PALM or STORM imaging, SRRF achieves resolutions approaching those of standard single-molecule localization analysis. The broad applicability of SRRF and its performance at low signal-to-noise ratios allows super-resolution using modern widefield, confocal or TIRF microscopes with illumination orders of magnitude lower than methods such as PALM, STORM or STED. We demonstrate this by super-resolution live-cell imaging over timescales ranging from minutes to hours. PMID:27514992

  17. Differentiation of distinct long-lived memory CD4 T cells in intestinal tissues after oral Listeria monocytogenes infection.

    PubMed

    Romagnoli, P A; Fu, H H; Qiu, Z; Khairallah, C; Pham, Q M; Puddington, L; Khanna, K M; Lefrançois, L; Sheridan, B S

    2017-03-01

    Mucosal antigen-specific CD4 T-cell responses to intestinal pathogens remain incompletely understood. Here we examined the CD4 T-cell response after oral infection with an internalin A 'murinized' Listeria monocytogenes (Lm). Oral Lm infection induced a robust endogenous listeriolysin O (LLO)-specific CD4 T-cell response with distinct phenotypic and functional characteristics in the intestine. Circulating LLO-specific CD4 T cells transiently expressed the 'gut-homing' integrin α4β7 and accumulated in the intestinal lamina propria and epithelium where they were maintained independent of interleukin (IL)-15. The majority of intestinal LLO-specific CD4 T cells were CD27(-) Ly6C(-) and CD69(+) CD103(-) while the lymphoid LLO-specific CD4 T cells were heterogeneous based on CD27 and Ly6C expression and predominately CD69(-). LLO-specific effector CD4 T cells transitioned into a long-lived memory population that phenotypically resembled their parent effectors and displayed hallmarks of residency. In addition, intestinal effector and memory CD4 T cells showed a predominant polyfunctional Th1 profile producing IFNγ, TNFα, and IL-2 at high levels with minimal but detectable levels of IL-17A. Depletion of CD4 T cells in immunized mice led to elevated bacterial burden after challenge infection highlighting a critical role for memory CD4 T cells in controlling intestinal intracellular pathogens.

  18. Differentiation of distinct long-lived memory CD4 T cells in intestinal tissues after oral Listeria monocytogenes infection

    PubMed Central

    Romagnoli, PA; Fu, HH; Qiu, Z; Khairallah, C; Pham, QM; Puddington, L; Khanna, KM; Lefrançois, L; Sheridan, BS

    2016-01-01

    Mucosal antigen-specific CD4 T cell responses to intestinal pathogens remain incompletely understood. Here we examined the CD4 T cell response after oral infection with an internalin A ‘murinized’ Listeria monocytogenes (Lm). Oral Lm infection induced a robust endogenous listeriolysin O (LLO)-specific CD4 T cell response with distinct phenotypic and functional characteristics in the intestine. Circulating LLO-specific CD4 T cells transiently expressed the ‘gut-homing’ integrin α4β7 and accumulated in the intestinal lamina propria and epithelium where they were maintained independent of IL-15. The majority of intestinal LLO-specific CD4 T cells were CD27− Ly6C− and CD69+ CD103− while the lymphoid LLO-specific CD4 T cells were heterogeneous based on CD27 and Ly6C expression and predominately CD69−. LLO-specific effector CD4 T cells transitioned into a long-lived memory population that phenotypically resembled their parent effectors and displayed hallmarks of residency. In addition, intestinal effector and memory CD4 T cells showed a predominant polyfunctional Th1 profile producing IFNγ, TNFα and IL-2 at high levels with minimal but detectable levels of IL-17A. Depletion of CD4 T cells in immunized mice led to elevated bacterial burden after challenge infection highlighting a critical role for memory CD4 T cells in controlling intestinal intracellular pathogens. PMID:27461178

  19. Microbeam studies of the sensitivity of structures within living cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Braby, L. A.

    1992-01-01

    Determining the biological effects of low doses of radiation with high linear energy transfer (LET) is complicated by the stochastic nature of charged-particle interactions. Populations of cells exposed to very low radiation doses contain a few cells which have been hit by a charged particle, while the majority of the cells receive no radiation damage. At somewhat higher doses, a few cells receive two or more events. Because the effects of damage produced by separate events can interact in the cell, we have had to make assumptions about the nature of these interactions in order to interpret the results of the experiments. Many of those assumptions can be tested if we can be sure of the number of charged-particle events which occur in individual cells, and correlate this number with the biological effect. We have developed a special irradiation facility at Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) to control the actual number of charged particle tracks that pass through cell nuclei. The beam from a 2 MeV tandem accelerator is collimated to approximately 5 microns. Cells, grown in special dishes with 1.5 microns thick plastic bottoms, are positioned so that the desired portion of the cell aligns with the collimator. A shutter in the beam line is opened and closed after the desired number of particle tracks has been counted. This approach can be used to investigate the effects of the interaction between irradiated and unirradiated cells in an organized system, as well as to study the effects of spatial and temporal distribution of radiation damage within single cells.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

  20. Live single cell functional phenotyping in droplet nano-liter reactors.

    PubMed

    Konry, Tania; Golberg, Alexander; Yarmush, Martin

    2013-11-11

    While single cell heterogeneity is present in all biological systems, most studies cannot address it due to technical limitations. Here we describe a nano-liter droplet microfluidic-based approach for stimulation and monitoring of surface and secreted markers of live single immune dendritic cells (DCs) as well as monitoring the live T cell/DC interaction. This nano-liter in vivo simulating microenvironment allows delivering various stimuli reagents to each cell and appropriate gas exchanges which are necessary to ensure functionality and viability of encapsulated cells. Labeling bioassay and microsphere sensors were integrated into nano-liter reaction volume of the droplet to monitor live single cell surface markers and secretion analysis in the time-dependent fashion. Thus live cell stimulation, secretion and surface monitoring can be obtained simultaneously in distinct microenvironment, which previously was possible using complicated and multi-step in vitro and in vivo live-cell microscopy, together with immunological studies of the outcome secretion of cellular function.

  1. Live single cell functional phenotyping in droplet nano-liter reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konry, Tania; Golberg, Alexander; Yarmush, Martin

    2013-11-01

    While single cell heterogeneity is present in all biological systems, most studies cannot address it due to technical limitations. Here we describe a nano-liter droplet microfluidic-based approach for stimulation and monitoring of surfaceand secreted markers of live single immune dendritic cells (DCs) as well as monitoring the live T cell/DC interaction. This nano-liter in vivo simulating microenvironment allows delivering various stimuli reagents to each cell and appropriate gas exchanges which are necessary to ensure functionality and viability of encapsulated cells. Labeling bioassay and microsphere sensors were integrated into nano-liter reaction volume of the droplet to monitor live single cell surface markers and secretion analysis in the time-dependent fashion. Thus live cell stimulation, secretion and surface monitoring can be obtained simultaneously in distinct microenvironment, which previously was possible using complicated and multi-step in vitro and in vivo live-cell microscopy, together with immunological studies of the outcome secretion of cellular function.

  2. Live single cell functional phenotyping in droplet nano-liter reactors

    PubMed Central

    Konry, Tania; Golberg, Alexander; Yarmush, Martin

    2013-01-01

    While single cell heterogeneity is present in all biological systems, most studies cannot address it due to technical limitations. Here we describe a nano-liter droplet microfluidic-based approach for stimulation and monitoring of surfaceand secreted markers of live single immune dendritic cells (DCs) as well as monitoring the live T cell/DC interaction. This nano-liter in vivo simulating microenvironment allows delivering various stimuli reagents to each cell and appropriate gas exchanges which are necessary to ensure functionality and viability of encapsulated cells. Labeling bioassay and microsphere sensors were integrated into nano-liter reaction volume of the droplet to monitor live single cell surface markers and secretion analysis in the time-dependent fashion. Thus live cell stimulation, secretion and surface monitoring can be obtained simultaneously in distinct microenvironment, which previously was possible using complicated and multi-step in vitro and in vivo live-cell microscopy, together with immunological studies of the outcome secretion of cellular function. PMID:24212247

  3. Nanoscale bio-platforms for living cell interrogation: current status and future perspectives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Lingqian; Hu, Jiaming; Chen, Feng; Chen, Zhou; Shi, Junfeng; Yang, Zhaogang; Li, Yiwen; Lee, Ly James

    2016-02-01

    The living cell is a complex entity that dynamically responds to both intracellular and extracellular environments. Extensive efforts have been devoted to the understanding intracellular functions orchestrated with mRNAs and proteins in investigation of the fate of a single-cell, including proliferation, apoptosis, motility, differentiation and mutations. The rapid development of modern cellular analysis techniques (e.g. PCR, western blotting, immunochemistry, etc.) offers new opportunities in quantitative analysis of RNA/protein expression up to a single cell level. The recent entries of nanoscale platforms that include kinds of methodologies with high spatial and temporal resolution have been widely employed to probe the living cells. In this tutorial review paper, we give insight into background introduction and technical innovation of currently reported nanoscale platforms for living cell interrogation. These highlighted technologies are documented in details within four categories, including nano-biosensors for label-free detection of living cells, nanodevices for living cell probing by intracellular marker delivery, high-throughput platforms towards clinical current, and the progress of microscopic imaging platforms for cell/tissue tracking in vitro and in vivo. Perspectives for system improvement were also discussed to solve the limitations remains in current techniques, for the purpose of clinical use in future.

  4. Lanthanide-based imaging of protein-protein interactions in live cells.

    PubMed

    Rajendran, Megha; Yapici, Engin; Miller, Lawrence W

    2014-02-17

    In order to deduce the molecular mechanisms of biological function, it is necessary to monitor changes in the subcellular location, activation, and interaction of proteins within living cells in real time. Förster resonance energy-transfer (FRET)-based biosensors that incorporate genetically encoded, fluorescent proteins permit high spatial resolution imaging of protein-protein interactions or protein conformational dynamics. However, a nonspecific fluorescence background often obscures small FRET signal changes, and intensity-based biosensor measurements require careful interpretation and several control experiments. These problems can be overcome by using lanthanide [Tb(III) or Eu(III)] complexes as donors and green fluorescent protein (GFP) or other conventional fluorophores as acceptors. Essential features of this approach are the long-lifetime (approximately milliseconds) luminescence of Tb(III) complexes and time-gated luminescence microscopy. This allows pulsed excitation, followed by a brief delay, which eliminates nonspecific fluorescence before the detection of Tb(III)-to-GFP emission. The challenges of intracellular delivery, selective protein labeling, and time-gated imaging of lanthanide luminescence are presented, and recent efforts to investigate the cellular uptake of lanthanide probes are reviewed. Data are presented showing that conjugation