Here we show our method to isolate mouse epidermal neural crest stem cells (EPI-NCSC). Technique involves micro-dissecting whisker follicles, isolating the bulge and placeing it into tissue culture. EPI-NCSC start to emigrate from bulge explants onto the substratum within 3 - 4 days.
This article presents a robust protocol for isolation and culture of neural crest stem cells from human hair follicles.
A technique to genetically manipulate epithelial cells within whole ex vivo cultured embryonic mouse submandibular glands (SMGs) using viral gene transfer is described. This method takes advantage of the innate ability of SMG epithelium and mesenchyme to spontaneously recombine after separation and infection of epithelial rudiments with adenoviral vectors.
Voltage-sensitive Dye Recording from Axons, Dendrites and Dendritic Spines of Individual Neurons in Brain Slices
An imaging technique for monitoring of membrane potential changes with sub-micrometer spatial and sub-millisecond temporal resolution is described. The technique, based on laser excitation of voltage-sensitive dyes, allows measurements of signals in axons and axon collaterals, terminal dendritic branches, and individual dendritic spines.
1Unit on Neural Circuits and Adaptive Behaviors, Genes Cognition and Psychosis Program, National Institute of Mental Health, 2Department of Neuroscience, Brown University - National Institutes of Health Graduate Partnership Program, 3Section on Synaptic Pharmacology, Laboratory for Integrative Neuroscience, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 4Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme, Champalimaud Center for the Unknown
Experience-dependent molecular changes in neurons are essential for the brain's ability to adapt in response to behavioral challenges. An in vivo two-photon imaging method is described here that allows the tracking of such molecular changes in individual cortical neurons through genetically encoded reporters.
To cultivate neural crest stem cells (NCSC) in vitro, a special medium (NCSCM) is required. Essential part of NCSCM is chick embryo extract (CEE). We here describe accurate techniques to produce a maximized amount of pure and high quality CEE, including details as the isolation, maceration, centrifugation, and filtration processes.
We describe how to measure near membrane and global intracellular calcium dynamics in cultured astrocytes using total internal reflection and epifluorescence microscopy.
1Institute of Biochemistry, Food Science, and Nutrition , The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food, and Environment, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2Department of Physics and Astronomy, Ohio University
Ice binding proteins (IBPs), also known as antifreeze proteins, inhibit ice growth and are a promising additive for use in the cryopreservation of tissues. The main tool used to investigate IBPs is the nanoliter osmometer. We developed a home-designed cooling stage mounted on an optical microscope and controlled using a custom-built LabVIEW routine. The nanoliter osmometer described here manipulated the sample temperature in an ultra-sensitive manner.
Differential Imaging of Biological Structures with Doubly-resonant Coherent Anti-stokes Raman Scattering (CARS)
A combination of three single wavelength short-pulsed lasers is used to generate coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) and doubly-resonant CARS (DR-CARS). The difference between these signals provides enhanced sensitivity for otherwise difficult to detect coherent Raman signals, enabling imaging of weak Raman scatterers.
1Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition, 2Department of Psychology, University of Pittsburgh, 3Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, 4Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh
We describe a novel approach for simultaneous analysis of brain function and structure using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We assess brain structure with high-resolution diffusion-weighted imaging and white-matter fiber tractography. Unlike standard structural MRI, these techniques allow us to directly relate anatomical connectivity to functional properties of brain networks.
We have developed a method for simultaneous functional magnetic resonance imaging and electrophysiological recording in the rodent brain, providing a platform for the investigation of the relationship between neural activity and the blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) MRI signal.
In this video, we demonstrate the EpiDerm Skin Irritation test (EpiDerm SIT) developed and validated for in vitro skin irritation testing of chemicals, including cosmetic and pharmaceutical ingredients.
Targeted Labeling of Neurons in a Specific Functional Micro-domain of the Neocortex by Combining Intrinsic Signal and Two-photon Imaging
A method is described for labeling neurons with fluorescent dyes in predetermined functional micro-domains of the neocortex. First, intrinsic signal optical imaging is used to obtain a functional map. Then two-photon microscopy is used to label and image neurons within a micro-domain of the map.
Intravital microscopy to follow temporal and spatial hemodynamic and inflammatory events in the pial microcirculation.
An Optimized Procedure for Fluorescence-activated Cell Sorting (FACS) Isolation of Autonomic Neural Progenitors from Visceral Organs of Fetal Mice
An optimized procedure to purify neural crest-derived neuronal progenitors from fetal mouse tissues is described. This method takes advantage of expression from fluorescent reporter alleles to isolate discrete populations by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). The technique can be applied to isolate neuronal subpopulations throughout development or from adult tissues.
Patterned Photostimulation with Digital Micromirror Devices to Investigate Dendritic Integration Across Branch Points
Digital micromirror devices (DMD) can generate complex patterns in time and space with which to control neuronal excitability. Issues relevant to the design, construction, and operation of DMD systems are discussed. Such a system enabled the demonstration of non-linear integration across distal dendritic branch points.
This paper describes the methodology to determine the chemotactic response of leukocytes to specific ligands and identify interactions between the cell surface receptors and cytosolic proteins using live cell imaging techniques.
Spatio-Temporal Manipulation of Small GTPase Activity at Subcellular Level and on Timescale of Seconds in Living Cells
A method for spatio-temporal control of small GTPase activity by light is described. This method is based on rapamycin-induced FKBP-FRB heterodimerization and photo-caging systems. Optimization of light-irradiation enables the spatio-temporally controlled activation of small GTPases at the subcellular level.
1Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care, Shriners Hospital for Children, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Harvard Medical School, 2Department of Geriatric Medicine, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo
A new versatile method for observation of microcirculation is presented. It is considered suitable for long-term observation, and for combination with pharmacophysiological or molecular biological interventions.
Recently high-throughput sequencing technology has greatly increased sensitivity of Chromatin Immunoprecipitation (ChIP) experiment and prompted its application using purified cells or dissected tissue. Here we delineate a method to use ChIP technique with Drosophila tissue, which can address the endogenous chromatin state in a well-characterized biological system.
Selection, microinjection, and imaging of fluorescently-labeled F-actin via fluorescent speckle microscopy (FSM).
Measuring the Subjective Value of Risky and Ambiguous Options using Experimental Economics and Functional MRI Methods
1Section of Comparative Medicine, Yale School of Medicine, 2Department of Neurobiology, Yale School of Medicine, 3Center for Neural Science, New York University, 4Department of Psychology, New York University, 5Department of Economics, New York University
Using functional MRI and behavioral methods to determine the neural representation of the subjective value of risky and ambiguous options in the human brain.
Magnetic Resonance Elastography Methodology for the Evaluation of Tissue Engineered Construct Growth
The procedure demonstrates the methodology of magnetic resonance elastography for monitoring the engineered outcome of adipose and osteogenic tissue engineered constructs through noninvasive local assessment of the mechanical properties using microscopic magnetic resonance elastography (μMRE).
This paper introduces an approach of combining laser scanning photostimulation with whole cell recordings in transgenic mice expressing GFP in limited inhibitory neuron populations. The technique allows for extensive mapping and quantitative analysis of local synaptic circuits of specific inhibitory cortical neurons.
The sialidase assay is a simple technical approach that will elucidate novel molecular mechanism(s) of TLR sensors of microbial infections and involvement in inflammatory diseases at the receptor level on the cell surface of live macrophages.
This article describes an electrophysiological method for isolating chemical stimulation to individual sensilla via extracellular, tip-recordings under mineral oil.
In many biological and clinical situations it is advantageous to study cellular processes as they evolve in their native microenvironment. Here we describe the assembly and use of a low-cost fiber-optic microscope which can provide real time imaging in cell culture, animal studies, and clinical patient studies.
Identification and Isolation of Slow-Dividing Cells in Human Glioblastoma Using Carboxy Fluorescein Succinimidyl Ester (CFSE)
This video protocol demonstrates the application of the fluorescent dye carboxyfluorescein succinimidyl ester (CFSE) for the identification and separation of different sub-populations of cells in human glioblastoma based on frequency of cell division.
A protocol to cut neurons in C. elegans with a MicroPoint pulsed laser is presented. We describe setting up the system, immobilizing worms, and severing labeled neurons. Advantages include a relatively low-cost system and the ability to sever neuronal processes or ablate cells in vivo.
A tissue preparation is described for visualization and experimental manipulation of the living microcirculation. In anesthetized male mice, the thin, highly vascularized cremaster muscle is prepared for intravital microscopy to study microvascular networks including arterioles, capillaries and venules. This preparation is readily adapted for rats and hamsters.
Bioimaging methods used to assess cell biodistribution of nanoparticles are applicable for therapeutic and diagnostic monitoring of nanoformulated compounds. The methods described herein are sensitive and specific when assessed by histological coregistration. The methodologies provide a translational pathway from rodent to human applications.
1Department of Chemistry, City College of New York, City University of New York Graduate Center and Institute for Macromolecular Assemblies, 2Department of Chemical Engineering, City College of New York
Aerial plant organs are protected by the cuticle, a supramolecular biopolyester-wax assembly. We present protocols to monitor selective removal of epi- and intracuticular waxes from tomato fruit cuticles on molecular and micro scales by solid-state NMR and atomic force microscopy, respectively, and to assess the cross-linking capacity of engineered cuticular biopolyesters.
Imaging Odor-Evoked Activities in the Mouse Olfactory Bulb using Optical Reflectance and Autofluorescence Signals
This article presents the protocols of intrinsic optical signals and flavoproteins autofluorescence signals imaging to map odor-evoked activities at the surface of the olfactory bulb in mice.
1Michigan Research Community, Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, University of Michigan, 2Department of Neurology, University of Michigan, 3Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology, and Diabetes, University of Michigan
We developed a sensitive technique to label newly synthesized mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) in individual cells in order to study mtDNA biogenesis. The technique combines the incorporation of EdU together with a tyramide signal amplification (TSA) protocol to visualize mtDNA replication within subcellular compartments of neurons.
Time-lapse Imaging of Primary Preneoplastic Mammary Epithelial Cells Derived from Genetically Engineered Mouse Models of Breast Cancer
1Department of Oncology, Georgetown University, 2Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Georgetown University, 3Stem Cell Dynamics, Helmholtz Zentrum München - German Research Center for Environmental Health, 4Department of Medicine, Georgetown University, 5Department of Nanobiomedical Science and WCU Research Center of Nanobiomedical Science, Dankook University
Time-lapse imaging is used to assess behavior of primary preneoplastic mammary epithelial cells derived from genetically engineered mouse models of breast cancer risk to determine if there are correlations between specific behavioral parameters and distinct genetic lesions.
This is a method for generating gynogenetic diploid zebrafish embryos (embryos whose only genetic contribution comes from the mother) by blocking the second meiotic division immediately after fertilization with ultraviolet light-inactivated sperm. EP embryos are not fully homozygous due to recombination during the first meiotic division, however they are homozygous at all loci that have not been separated from their centromere by recombination.
This presentation demonstrates the use of fMRI to study neural circuits that underlie decision-making. Simple perceptual tasks are combined with appetitive and aversive reinforcements to investigate how outcomes affect decision processes.
Electrophysiological recordings from Drosophila embryos allow analyses of developing muscle and neuron electrical properties, as well as characterization of functional synaptogenesis at the glutamatergic neuromuscular junction and central cholinergic and GABAergic synapses.
The production of hyperpolarized xenon by means of spin exchange optical pumping (SEOP) is described. This method yields a ~10000-fold enhancement of the nuclear spin polarization of Xe-129 and has applications in nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and imaging. Examples of gas phase and solution state experiments are given.
Recent advances in 2-photon microscopy have enabled real-time in situ imaging of live tissues in animal models, thereby enhancing our ability to investigate cellular behavior in both physiologic and pathologic conditions. Here, we outline the preparations required to perform intravital imaging of the mouse popliteal lymph node.
FMRI and physiological monitoring is used to study the effects of Acupuncture on the central and peripheral nervous systems. Acupuncture mobilizes a limbic-paralimbic-neocortical network, with great overlap with the default mode network, to modulate neurological activity, possibly related to its autonomic effect in the peripheral nervous system.
Understanding the function of the vertebrate central nervous system requires recordings from many neurons because cortical function arises on the level of populations of neurons. Here we describe an optical method to record suprathreshold neural activity with single-cell and single-spike resolution, dithered random-access scanning. This method records somatic fluorescence calcium signals from up to 100 neurons with high temporal resolution. A maximum-likelihood algorithm deconvolves the underlying suprathreshold neural activity from the somatic fluorescence calcium signals. This method reliably detects spikes with high detection efficiency and a low rate of false positives and can be used to study neural populations in vitro and in vivo.
Mapping the After-effects of Theta Burst Stimulation on the Human Auditory Cortex with Functional Imaging
Auditory processing is the basis of speech and music-related processing. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) has been used successfully to study cognitive, sensory and motor systems but has rarely been applied to audition. Here we investigated TMS combined with functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging to understand the functional organization of auditory cortex.
By tagging the extracellular domains of membrane receptors with superecliptic pHluorin, and by imaging these fusion receptors in cultured mouse neurons, we can directly visualize individual vesicular insertion events of the receptors to the plasma membrane. This technique will be instrumental in elucidating the molecular mechanisms governing receptor insertion to the plasma membrane.
Real-time Digital Imaging of Leukocyte-endothelial Interaction in Ischemia-reperfusion Injury (IRI) of the Rat Cremaster Muscle
Digital intravital epifluorescence microscopy of postcapillary venules in the cremasteric microcirculation is a convenient method to gain insights into leukocyte-endothelial interaction in vivo in ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) of striated muscle tissue. We here provide a detailed protocol to safely perform the technique and discuss its applications and limitations.
Optical Recording of Electrical Activity in Guinea-pig Enteric Networks using Voltage-sensitive Dyes
This protocol illustrates how voltage-sensitive dyes enable optical recording of electrical activity from intact neural networks such as the plexuses of the guinea-pig enteric nervous system, with an adjustable resolution that ranges from single-cells to multi-ganglionic circuitry.
1Centre for Neuroscience, University of Alberta, 2Neuroscience Program, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 3Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, Duke University, 4Psychology Department, Neuroscience Program, & Beckman Institute, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
We present a protocol that uses functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate the neural correlates of the memory-enhancing effect of emotion. This protocol allows identification of brain activity specifically linked to memory-related processing, contrary to more general perceptual processing, and can be used with healthy and clinical populations.
A method to visualize and quantify F-actin barbed ends in neuronal growth cones is described. After culturing neurons on glass coverslips, cells are permeabilized with a saponin-containing solution. Then, a short incubation with the saponin buffer containing rhodamine-actin incorporates fluorescent actin onto free actin barbed ends.
Neuroimaging techniques, such as functional MRI and Diffusion Tensor Imaging have become increasingly useful in characterizing the cognitive and neural deficits in autism. An examination of brain connectivity in autism at a network level along with adaptations for scanning children with developmental disabilities is presented.