Here, we describe procedures for studying changes in phagocytosis-induced gene expression with a luciferase-based reporter gene approach using the Dual-GloTM Luciferase Assay System from Promega.
Development, Expansion, and In vivo Monitoring of Human NK Cells from Human Embryonic Stem Cells (hESCs) and and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs)
This protocol describes the development, expansion, and in vivo imaging of NK cells derived from hESCs and iPSCs.
Herein we describe the methods to construct, visualize, and quantify the bioluminescent reactions of both firefly and renilla luciferase enzymes expressed in metastatic breast cancer cells during their growth and metastasis in vivo.
A non-invasive means to evaluate the success of myoblast transplantation is described. The method takes advantage of a unified fusion reporter gene composed of genes whose expression can be imaged with different imaging modalities. Here, we make use of a fluc reporter gene sequence to target cells via bioluminescence imaging.
Utilizing luciferase and in vivo imaging systems (IVIS) as a novel means to identify disease endpoints before clinical developments occur. IVIS has allowed us to visualize in real time the invasion of encephalitic viruses over multiple days, providing a more accurate disease model for future study. It has also allowed us to identify the potential protective features of antivirals and vaccines faster than currently utilized animal models. The capability to utilize individual animals over multiple time points ensures reduced animal requirements, costs, and overall morbidity to the animals utilized ensuring a more humane and more scientific means of disease study.
We present our optimized high-throughput nucleofection protocol as an efficient way of transfecting primary human monocyte-derived dendritic cells with either plasmid DNA or siRNA without causing cell maturation. We further provide evidence for successful siRNA silencing of targeted gene RIG-I at both the mRNA and protein levels.
To understand a link between the immune response and behavior, we describe a method to measure locomotor behavior in Drosophila during bacterial infection as well as the ability of flies to mount an immune response by monitoring survival, bacterial load, and real-time activity of a key regulator of innate immunity, NFκB.
The technical aspects of performing LIPS (Luciferase Immunoprecipitation Systems) are described. The overall approach involves expressing chimeric genes encoding antigens fused to Renilla luciferase (Ruc) in mammalian cells. Crude Ruc-antigen extracts are then prepared and, without purification, employed in immunoprecipitation assays to quantify antibodies.
This protocol describes a simple and inexpensive way to quantify the activity of cis-regulatory elements (i.e., enhancer/promoters) in living mouse retinas via explant electroporation. DNA preparation, retinal dissection, electroporation, retinal explant culture, and post-fixation analysis and quantification are described.
We have developed a cell fusion assay that quantifies SNARE-mediated membrane fusion events by activated expression of β-galactosidase.
Identifying Targets of Human microRNAs with the LightSwitch Luciferase Assay System using 3'UTR-reporter Constructs and a microRNA Mimic in Adherent Cells
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are important regulators of gene expression and have been shown to play a role in numerous biological processes. To better understand miRNA-UTR interactions, we have created a genome-wide collection of 3 UTR luciferase reporters paired with a novel luciferase gene and assay reagent, the LightSwitch system.
The following protocol provides techniques for encapsulating pancreatic β-cells in step-growth PEG-peptide hydrogels formed by thiol-ene photo-click reactions. This material platform not only offers a cytocompatible microenvironment for cell encapsulation, but also permits user-controlled rapid recovery of cell structures formed within the hydrogels.
This method describes high yield in vitro synthesis of both capped and uncapped mRNA from a linearized plasmid containing the Gaussia luciferase (GLuc) gene. The RNA is purified and a fraction of the uncapped RNA is enzymatically capped using the Vaccinia virus capping enzyme. In the final step, the mRNA is transfected into HeLa cells and cell culture supernatants are assayed for luciferase activity.
This article describes an optimized sequence of events for multimodal imaging of cellular grafts in rodent brain using: (i) in vivo bioluminescence and magnetic resonance imaging, and (ii) post mortem histological analysis. Combining these imaging modalities on a single animal allows cellular graft evaluation with high resolution, sensitivity and specificity.
Here we propose simple methods to induce hypoxia in cell cultures and simple tests to evaluate the hypoxic status of the cultures.
In this protocol a method to measure intracellular protein refolding after heat shock is described. This method can be used to study foldases like molecular chaperones and their co-factors or compounds able to influence their activity. Firefly luciferase activity is used as reporter to measure chaperone refolding activity.
In vivo Bioluminescence Imaging of Tumor Hypoxia Dynamics of Breast Cancer Brain Metastasis in a Mouse Model
1Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 2Department of Radiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 3Department of Radiation Oncology, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine
Bioluminescence imaging of hypoxia inducible factor-1α activity is applied to monitor intracranial tumor hypoxia development in a breast cancer brain metastasis mouse model.
Here we propose simple methods to test and evaluate the presence of reactive oxygen species in cells.
Protocol for Recombinant RBD-based SARS Vaccines: Protein Preparation, Animal Vaccination and Neutralization Detection
This protocol describes a general procedure for studying recombinant receptor-binding domain (RBD)-based subunit vaccines against SARS. It includes methods for transfection and expression of RBD protein in 293T cells, immunization of mice with RBD and detection of neutralization activity of mouse sera using an established SARS pseudovirus neutralization assay.
Here, we describe a protocol for the purification of highly active Hsp104, a hexameric AAA+ protein from yeast, which couples ATP hydrolysis to protein disaggregation. This scheme exploits a His6-tagged construct for affinity purification from E. coli followed by anion-exchange chromatography, His6-tag removal with TEV protease, and size-exclusion chromatography.
Here we describe a protocol based only on cell infection, which improves the efficiency of recombinant parvovirus production by more than 100 fold in comparison to other protocols in use. This protocol relies on the use of a novel adenovirus 5-based helper containing the parvovirus VP transcription unit (Ad-VP).
An In vitro Co-infection Model to Study Plasmodium falciparum-HIV-1 Interactions in Human Primary Monocyte-derived Immune Cells
We have developed an in vitro malaria-HIV-1 co-infection model to study the impact of Plasmodium falciparum on the HIV-1 replicative cycle in human primary monocyte-derived macrophages. This versatile system can easily be adapted to other primary cell types susceptible to HIV-1 infection.
With the growing interest in stem cell therapies, molecular imaging techniques are ideal for monitoring stem cell behavior after transplantation. Luciferase reporter genes have enabled non-invasive, repetitive assessment of cell survival, location, and proliferation in vivo. This video will demonstrate how to track hESC proliferation in a living mouse.
We describe two methods for conditional trans-complementation of hepatitis C virus (HCV) assembly and the completion of the full viral life cycle, which rely on heterokaryon formation. These techniques are suitable to screen for cell lines that express dominant restriction factors, which preclude production of infectious HCV progeny.
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Materials Science Program, Laboratory for Optical and Computational Instrumentation, University of Wisconsin-Madison
A method to track cell fusion in living organisms over time is described. The approach utilizes Cre-LoxP recombination to induce luciferase expression upon cell fusion. The luminescent signal generated can be detected in living organisms using biophotonic imaging systems with a sensitivity of detection of ˜1,000 cells in peripheral tissues.
Isometric and Eccentric Force Generation Assessment of Skeletal Muscles Isolated from Murine Models of Muscular Dystrophies
1Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Dental Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 2Department of Physiology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 3Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Dental Medicine, School of Dental Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
Muscle function measurements contribute to the evaluation of potential therapeutics for muscle pathology, as well as to the determination of mechanisms underlying physiology of this tissue. We will demonstrate the preparation of the extensor digitorum longus and diaphragm muscles for functional testing. Protocols for isometric and eccentric contractions will be shown, as well as differences in results between dystrophic muscles, representing a pathological state, and wildtype muscles.
Establishing Intracranial Brain Tumor Xenografts With Subsequent Analysis of Tumor Growth and Response to Therapy using Bioluminescence Imaging
Luciferase-modified human brain tumor xenografts can be established intracranially in athymic mice, with subsequent monitoring of tumor growth and response to therapy using bioluminescence imaging. In combination with survival analysis, bioluminescence monitoring is an essential research tool for pre-clinical testing of therapies being considered for treating brain tumors.
1Interdisciplinary Immunology Program, University of Iowa, and the VA Medical Center, 2Department of Biochemistry, University of Iowa, and the VA Medical Center, 3Department of Internal Medicine, University of Iowa, 4Department of Molecular Microbiology, Washington University School of Medicine, 5Division of Dermatology, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Hanley-Hardison Research Center, 6Interdisciplinary Immunology Program, Iowa City VA Medical Center, 7Departments of Internal Medicine, Microbiology and Epidemiology, University of Iowa
An in vivo imaging system is used to generate quantitative measurements of murine infection with the Trypanosomatid protozoan Leishmania. This is a non-invasive and non-lethal method for detecting parasites expressing luciferase within many tissues throughout the course of chronic Leishmania spp. infection.
Mammary tumor cells expressing luciferase are implanted subcutaneously in mice and visualized using optical imaging to monitor tumor growth and development non-invasively in a longitudinal study.
Assessment of Immunologically Relevant Dynamic Tertiary Structural Features of the HIV-1 V3 Loop Crown R2 Sequence by ab initio Folding
The crown region of different V3 loop sequences of the surface envelope glycoprotein (gp120) of HIV-1 can be structurally characterized in many cases by in silico folding of positions 10 to 22 of the loop using a state-of-the-art ab initio folding algorithm. Here we demonstrate the folding and evaluation of this region of the V3 loop from the R2 strain of HIV-1, a uniquely neutralization sensitive strain with puzzling functional properties.
An experimental mouse model of bone metastasis was established following intracardiac delivery of luciferase expressing mammary tumor cells. Tumor development and resulted osteolytic lesion were monitored longitudinally with bioluminescence and micro CT imaging.
Here are some highlights from the February 2012 Issue of Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE).
Oncolytic viruses are promising for cancer therapeutics. The ability to ascertain the infectability of live tissue specimens obtained from patients prior to treatment is a unique advantage of this therapeutic approach. This protocol describes how to process tissues for ex vivo infection with oncolytic virus and subsequent viral quantification.
Ultrasound Targeted Microbubble Destruction (UTMD) can be used to direct site-specific delivery of bioactive molecules, including therapeutic genes, to target organs accessible to ultrasound, such as the heart and liver1-6.
A New Single Chamber Implantable Defibrillator with Atrial Sensing: A Practical Demonstration of Sensing and Ease of Implantation
Dual-chamber implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) may improve detection of atrial fibrillation as well as differentiation of tachycardias. However, this advantage is undermined by complications associated with the second electrode, which is required in conventional dual chamber devices. Therefore, BIOTRONIK has developed a new electrode called the LinoxSMART S DX that, when used in conjunction with the Lumax DX ICD, offers dual-chamber detection without the risks associated with the second electrode.
Dual Electrophysiological Recordings of Synaptically-evoked Astroglial and Neuronal Responses in Acute Hippocampal Slices
The preparation of acute brain slices from isolated hippocampi, as well as the simultaneous electrophysiological recordings of astrocytes and neurons in stratum radiatum during stimulation of schaffer collaterals is described. The pharmacological isolation of astroglial potassium and glutamate transporter currents is demonstrated.
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, The Ohio State University, 2Department of Biomedical Informatics, The Ohio State University, 3Comprehensive Wound Center, The Ohio State University, 4Department of Surgery, The Ohio State University
A dual-mode imaging system was developed for non-contact assessment of cutaneous tissue oxygenation and vascular function.
Orthotopic animal models of ovarian cancer replicate better human disease and therefore enhance our understanding of cancer progression and tumor response to therapy. A mouse model receives an intrabursal injection of luciferase-expressing ovarian tumor cells. Treatment is administered via oral gavage. Tumor growth is monitored by in vivo imaging system.
Novel host factors involved in viral infection can be identified through cell-based genome-wide loss of function RNAi screening. A Drosophila cell culture model is particularly amenable to this approach due to the ease and efficiency of RNAi. Here we demonstrate this technique using vaccinia virus as an example.
1Experimental and Clinical Research Center, A joint cooperation between the Charité Medical Faculty and the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine, 2Berlin Ultrahigh Field Facility (B.U.F.F.), Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine
Tracking of cells using MRI has gained remarkable attention in the past years. This protocol describes the labeling of dendritic cells with fluorine (19F)-rich particles, the in vivo application of these cells, and monitoring the extent of their migration to the draining lymph node with 19F/1H MRI and 19F MRS.
Induction of Graft-versus-host Disease and In Vivo T Cell Monitoring Using an MHC-matched Murine Model
Murine bone marrow transplantation is a widely used technique to study immunological mechanisms governing graft-versus-host disease in humans. The ability to monitor T cell trafficking patterns in vivo allows for detailed analysis of the development and perpetuation of T cell responses during graft-versus-host disease.
Tissue-specific analysis of a hair follicle regeneration model using lentivirus to mediate gain- or loss-of-function.
Orthotopic Xenografting of Human Luciferase-Tagged Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor Cells for in vivo Testing of Candidate Therapeutic Agents
1Department of Pathology, University of Alabama at Birmingham - UAB, 2Department of Radiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham - UAB, 3Department of Cell Biology and Neurobiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham - UAB
A method for reliably grafting luciferase-tagged human malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor cells into the sciatic nerve of immunodeficient mice is described. The use of bioluminescence imaging to demonstrate proper establishment of tumor grafts and criteria for random segregation of animals into study groups are also discussed.
Evaluation of Muscle Function of the Extensor Digitorum Longus Muscle Ex vivo and Tibialis Anterior Muscle In situ in Mice
Changes in limb muscle contractile and passive mechanical properties are important biomarkers for muscle diseases. This manuscript describes physiological assays to measure these properties in the murine extensor digitorum longus and tibialis anterior muscles.
Slice Preparation, Organotypic Tissue Culturing and Luciferase Recording of Clock Gene Activity in the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus
The procedure of preparing slices containing the adult mouse hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), and a rapid way to culture the SCN tissue in organotypic culture condition, are reported. Further, the measurement of oscillatory clock gene protein expression using dynamic luciferase reporter technology is described.
Monitoring Cell-autonomous Circadian Clock Rhythms of Gene Expression Using Luciferase Bioluminescence Reporters
Circadian clocks function within individual cells, i.e., they are cell-autonomous. Here, we describe methods for generating cell-autonomous clock models using non-invasive, luciferase-based real-time bioluminescence technology. Reporter cells provide tractable, functional model systems for studying circadian biology.
Methods for bioluminescence imaging of bacterial infections in living animals are decribed. Pathogens are modified to express luciferase allowing optical whole body imaging of infections in live animals. Animal models can be infected with luciferase expressing pathogens and the resulting course of disease visualized in real-time by bioluminescence imaging.
1Department of Cancer Biology and Comprehensive Cancer Center, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, 2Department of Pathology and Comprehensive Cancer Center, Wake Forest University School of Medicine
RNA interference (RNAi) possesses many advantages over gene knockout and has been broadly used as a tool in gene functional studies. The invention of DNA vector-based RNAi technology has made long term and inducible gene knockdown possible, and also increased the feasibility of gene silencing in vivo.
Fabrication of Micropatterned Hydrogels for Neural Culture Systems using Dynamic Mask Projection Photolithography
Simple techniques are described for the rapid production of microfabricated neural culture systems using a digital micromirror device for dynamic mask projection lithography on regular cell culture substrates. These culture systems may be more representative of natural biological architecture, and the techniques described could be adapted for numerous applications.
Here we use a human esiRNA library in a high-throughput screen for genes involved in cell division. We demonstrate how to set up and conduct an esiRNA screens, as well as how to analyze and validate the results.