1Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute, University of California Berkeley, 2Office of Laboratory Animal Care, University of California Berkeley, 3McGovern Institute for Brain Research & The Department of Brain and Cognitive Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 4Integrative Biology Department, University of California Berkeley
Targeted ablation of specific brain region(s) by infusion of an excitotoxin using stereotaxic coordinates is described. This technique could also be adapted for infusion of other chemicals into the rat brain.
Photothrombotic Ischemia: A Minimally Invasive and Reproducible Photochemical Cortical Lesion Model for Mouse Stroke Studies
1Department of Neuroscience, University of Turin, 2Neuroscience Institute of Turin (NIT), University of Turin, 3Neuroscience Institute Cavalieri-Ottolenghi (NICO), University of Turin, 4Department of Anatomy, Pharmacology and Forensic Medicine, University of Turin
Photothrombosis is a quick, minimally-invasive technique for inducing small and well-delimited infarction in areas of interest in highly reproducible manner. It is particularly suitable for studying cellular and molecular responses underlying brain plasticity in transgenic mice.
The plus-maze measures anxiety-like behaviour in rodents. There are two opposite closed and two opposite open arms; anxious rodents avoid the open arms. The central area is neither completely open nor closed, so time spent here is ambiguous and difficult to interpret. Here a modification of the plus-maze protocol eliminating this area is described.
Measurement of Tension Release During Laser Induced Axon Lesion to Evaluate Axonal Adhesion to the Substrate at Piconewton and Millisecond Resolution
1Institute of Biophysics, National Research Council of Italy, 2Dipartimento di Sistemi e Informatica, Università di Firenze, 3Department of Neuroscience and Brain Technologies, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
We measured the tension release in an axon that was partially lesioned with a laser dissector by simultaneous force spectroscopy measurement performed on an optically-trapped probe adhered to the membrane of the axon. The developed experimental protocol evaluates the axon adhesion to the culture substrate.
1Norton Neuroscience Institute, Norton Healthcare, 2Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Group, Stark Neurosciences Research Institute, Department of Neurological Surgery and Goodman and Campbell Brain and Spine, Medical Neuroscience Graduate Program, and Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Indiana University School of Medicine
A novel technique to create a reproducible in vivo model of cervical spinal cord laceration injury in the mouse is described. This technique is based on spine stabilization by fixation of the cervical facets and laceration of the spinal cord using an oscillating blade with an accuracy of ±0.01 mm.
1Department of Dermatology, University of Freiburg, 2Kepler High School Freiburg, 3Centre for Biological Signalling Studies (BIOSS), University of Freiburg
In the animal model described in our present work, purified IgG antibodies against a stretch of 200 amino acids (aa 757-967) of collagen VII are injected repeatedly into mice reproducing the blistering phenotype as well as the histo- and immunopathological features characteristic to human epidermolysis bullosa acquisita (EBA)1.
An injury paradigm using the Drosophila larval ventral nerve cord to investigate central nervous system regeneration and repair is described. Stabbing followed by laser scanning confocal microscopy in time-lapse and fixed specimens, combined with quantitative analysis with purposefully developed software and genetics, are used to investigate the molecular mechanisms of CNS regeneration and repair.
We describe protocols for our mouse graft arteriosclerois (GA) models which involve interposition of a mouse vessel segment into a recipient of the same inbred strain. By backcrossing additional genetic changes into the vessel donor, the model can assess the effect of specific genes on GA.
Radical-based biomimetic chemistry has been applied to building-up libraries necessary for biomarker development.
The intraluminal middle cerebral occlusion model in mice is herein presented. The extent of cerebral infarct is evaluated by a neurologic score and cresyl violet staining, an alternative staining to TTC, offering the great advantage to test in parallel many interest markers.
Play fighting in the rat involves attack and defense of the nape of the neck, which if contacted, is gently nuzzled with the snout. Because the movements of one animal are countered by the actions of its partner, play fighting is a complex, dynamic interaction. This dynamic complexity raises methodological problems about what to score for experimental studies. We present a scoring schema that is sensitive to the correlated nature of the actions performed. Two experiments illustrate how these measurements can be used to detect the effect of brain damage on play fighting even when there is no effect on overall playfulness. That is, the schema presented here is designed to detect and evaluate changes in the content of play following an experimental treatment.
Mice can swim, but many strains appear to find this activity stressful. To overcome this problem mazes have been devised where escape from shallow water is used to motivate behaviour. These have been demonstrated to support learning at least as good as the traditional and widely used Morris water maze.
Protocols are presented for two established motor coordination tasks, the accelerating rotarod and horizontal bar, also two tests developed in Oxford recently, the static rods and parallel bars. These tests can detect motor impairments potentially of interest in their own right, as well as being possible variables in tests of other areas of behavior.
Deficits in muscular strength occur in many clinical conditions such as motor neuron disease. The inverted screen and weight lifting tests described here measure strength in mice almost exclusively, with minimal influence of factors such as coordination.
Probe-based confocal laser endomicroscopy enables real-time microscopy of the human urinary tract during cystoscopy, providing dynamic, intravital imaging of pathological states such as bladder cancer with cellular resolution. Endomicroscopy may augment the diagnostic accuracy of standard white light endoscopy and provide intraoperative image guidance to improve surgical resection.
1Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, 2Center for Studies in Behavioral Neurobiology, Department of Psychology, Concordia University
Circadian rhythms in voluntary wheel-running activity in mammals are tightly coupled to the molecular oscillations of a master clock in the brain. As such, these daily rhythms in behavior can be used to study the influence of genetic, pharmacological, and environmental factors on the functioning of this circadian clock.
The organoptypic hippocampal slice culture model is an in vitro model used to examine neuronal injury in a variety of paradigms. In this article, we describe the methods for generating slice cultures and quantifying neuronal injury.
Murine skin and soft tissue infection model is utilized for assessing the virulence function of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and the host immunological responses. Here, we presented a subcutaneous infection model for skin and soft tissue infection.
We demonstrated that malignant pigmented lesions with increased metabolic activity generate quantifiable amounts of heat and the measurement of the transient thermal response of the skin to a cooling excitation allows quantitative identification of melanoma and other skin cancers (vs. non-proliferative nevi) at an early stage of the disease.
A description of the surgical induction of endometriosis in mice and rats by auto-transplantation of uterine tissue to the arterial cascade of the intestinal mesentery.
As manual dexterity is a prerogative mainly of primates, behavioral tasks have been developed in macaque monkeys. Four reach and grasp prehension tasks, measuring hand manipulation ability and force, allow to establish functional recovery after a lesion of the central nervous system and to test the effect of a treatment.
Generation of an orthotopic mouse model of anaplastic thyroid carcinoma is described here. This technique employs surgical placement of human anaplastic thyroid cancer cells into the thyroid of immunodeficient mice, thus creating a more clinically relevant setting to study disease progression as well as screen innovative therapeutic interventions.
Practicing of fine needle aspiration biopsies (FNAB) by trainees is relatively challenging, due to the lack of an easily available, appropriate lesion. Preparation of an AV phantom lesion for practicing the FNAB procedure and mastering proficiency is relatively easy.
Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in the Dorsal Skin of Hamsters: a Useful Model for the Screening of Antileishmanial Drugs
Optimization of the experimental hamster model for cutaneous leishmaniasis by intradermal injection of Leishmania promastigotes at the dorsal skin. This approach is useful during inoculation, follow-up, characterization of lesions, application of treatments and obtaining of clinical samples. Locomotion, search for food and water, play and social activities are preserved.
We established mouse models of periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), the predominant brain injury in premature infants characterized by periventricular white matter lesions. Hypoxia/ischemia with/without systemic infection are the primary causes of PVL. Unilateral carotid ligation and hypoxia exposure with/without lipopolysaccharide injection creates PVL-like lesions in P6 mice.
A protocol for performing unilateral 6-OHDA lesions of the medial forebrain bundle in mice is described. This method has a low mortality rate (13.3 %) with 89% of the surviving animals showing >95% loss of striatal dopamine and 90.63±-4.02 % ipsiversive rotational bias towards the side of the lesion.
The rotorod test is used to assess motor status in the walking movement of hemi-Parkinson analogue rats.
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.
We seek to define the neural immune signaling responsible for cold-preconditioning as means to identify novel targets for therapeutics development to protect brain before injury onset. We present strategies for such work that require biological systems, experimental manipulations plus technical capacities that are highly reproducible and sensitive.
Parkinson disease is caused by loss of dopaminergic innervation to the striatum, which can be experimentally induced by 6-OH-dopamine. We describe how to perform a stereotaxic lesion and to monitor apomorphine-induced rotational behavior in mice. This model is useful and reliable for testing new therapies for Parkinson disease.
Trypsin digest is one of the most commonly used methods to analyze retinal vasculature. This manuscript describes the method in detail, including key alterations to optimize the technique and remove the non-vascular tissue while preserving the overall architecture of the vessels.
A thermal tumor ablation procedure is described. The entire procedure is detailed, including pretreatment planning and imaging studies, anesthesia, adjuvant techniques to facilitate a percutaneous approach, imaging guidance of the ablation device to the tumor, thermal treatment, post-treatment care and follow-up.
Cell-based Calcium Assay for Medium to High Throughput Screening of TRP Channel Functions using FlexStation 3
This video provides a detailed protocol for studying the pharmacological profile of human TRPA1 channels using FlexStation 3. The protocol covers details of cell preparation, dye loading and operation of the microplate reader, FlexStation 3.
We present a protocol that permits to view and to quantitatively asses the morphology of the dendritic tree of individual Purkinje cells grown in organotypic cerebellar slice cultures. This protocol is intended to promote studies on the mechanisms of Purkinje cell dendritic development.
Synthesis of Phase-shift Nanoemulsions with Narrow Size Distributions for Acoustic Droplet Vaporization and Bubble-enhanced Ultrasound-mediated Ablation
Phase-shift nanoemulsions (PSNE) can be vaporized using high intensity focused ultrasound to enhance localized heating and improve thermal ablation in tumors. In this report, the preparation of stable PSNE with a narrow size distribution is described. Furthermore, the impact of vaporized PSNE on ultrasound-mediated ablation is demonstrated in tissue-mimicking phantoms.
Optical Frequency Domain Imaging of Ex vivo Pulmonary Resection Specimens: Obtaining One to One Image to Histopathology Correlation
1Department of Pathology, Harvard Medical School, 2Massachusetts General Hospital, 3Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Harvard Medical School, 4Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, 5Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit, Harvard Medical School
A method to image ex vivo pulmonary resection specimens with optical frequency domain imaging (OFDI) and obtain precise correlation to histology is described, which is essential to developing specific OFDI interpretation criteria for pulmonary pathology. This method is applicable to other tissue types and imaging techniques to obtain precise imaging to histology correlation for accurate image interpretation and assessment. Imaging criteria established with this technique would then be applicable to image assessment in future in vivo studies.
In this paper we present a method for transplanting human stem cells into various regions of the central nervous system of the chicken embryo. This provides an in vivo model for assessing the proliferation and differentiation of various types of human stem cells in embryonic tissue environments.
1Department of Pharmacology, Vanderbilt University, 2Vanderbilt Center for Bone Biology, Vanderbilt University, 3Department of Veterans Affairs, Tennessee Valley Healthcare System (VISN 9), 4Department of Medicine, Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Vanderbilt University, 5Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University
Animal models are frequently utilized to study cancer metastasis to bone. In this protocol we will describe two common methods of tumor inoculation for bone metastasis studies and briefly describe some of the analyses utilized to monitor and quantify these models.
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.
Visualization of UV-induced Replication Intermediates in E. coli using Two-dimensional Agarose-gel Analysis
We present a procedure by which two-dimensional agarose-gel analysis can be used to identify the structure of replication intermediates that occur following UV irradiation.
Partially isolated cortex (“undercut”) is an efficient animal model of posttraumatic epileptogenesis. Here we demonstrate how to make a novel surgical device and use it to make more precise and consistent lesions to generate this model.
Multi-modal Imaging of Angiogenesis in a Nude Rat Model of Breast Cancer Bone Metastasis Using Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Volumetric Computed Tomography and Ultrasound
In the pathogenesis of bone metastasis, angiogenesis is a crucial process and therefore represents a target for imaging and therapy. Here, we present a rat model of site-specific breast cancer bone metastasis and describe strategies to non-invasively image angiogenesis in vivo using magnetic resonance imaging, volumetric computed tomography and ultrasound.
Bilateral Common Carotid Artery Occlusion as an Adequate Preconditioning Stimulus to Induce Early Ischemic Tolerance to Focal Cerebral Ischemia
There is accumulating evidence, that ischemic preconditioning (PC) – a non-damaging ischemic challenge to the brain - confers a transient protection to a subsequent damaging ischemic insult. We established bilateral common carotid artery occlusion (BCCAO) as a preconditioning stimulus to induce early ischemic tolerance (IT) to transient focal cerebral ischemia (induced by middle cerebral artery occlusion, MCAO) in C57Bl6/J mice.
We describe methods to study aspects of amylopathies in the worm C. elegans. We show how to construct worms expressing human Aβ42 in neurons and how to test their function in behavioral assays. We further show how to obtain primary neuronal cultures that can be used for pharmacological testing.
Traumatic injury to the spinal cord disrupts communication with the brain. To restore lost connectivity we utilize a peripheral nerve graft to provide a substratum for regenerating fibers in combination with neurotrophic factors and matrix-modulating enzymes to remove inhibitory molecules to promote long distance growth.
The ladder rung walking task is a new test to assess skilled walking and measure both forelimb and hindlimb placing, stepping, and inter-limb co-ordination.
Intraoperative Detection of Subtle Endometriosis: A Novel Paradigm for Detection and Treatment of Pelvic Pain Associated with the Loss of Peritoneal Integrity
1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Greenville Hospital System, 2Department of Pathology, Duke University Health System, 3Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Duke University
Loss of peritoneal integrity provides a new paradigm to understand and treat chronic pelvic pain in women with mild forms of endometriosis and can be easily detected using intraoperative instillation of dye at the time of laparoscopy.
A Video Demonstration of Preserved Piloting by Scent Tracking but Impaired Dead Reckoning After Fimbria-Fornix Lesions in the Rat
In a piloting scent tracking task, the ability of the rats to return to a refuge with food using visual an odor trail or using dead reckoning in infrared light, the integrated record of previous movements, demonstrates that the hippocampus is necessary for dead reckoning.
1European Institute for Molecular Imaging, Westfälische Wilhelms-University Münster, 2British Heart Foundation Cardiovascular Sciences Unit, Imperial College London, 3Department of Bioengineering, Imperial College London, 4Biomedical Engineering, Eindhoven University of Technology
The constricting cuff presented in this article is designed to induce atherosclerosis in the murine common carotid artery. Due to the conical shape of its inner lumen the implanted cuff generates well-defined regions of low, high and oscillatory shear stress triggering the development of atherosclerotic lesions of different inflammatory phenotypes.
Quantitative, Real-time Analysis of Base Excision Repair Activity in Cell Lysates Utilizing Lesion-specific Molecular Beacons
1Department of Pharmacology & Chemical Biology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, 2Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, 3Department of Experimental Therapy, The Netherlands Cancer Institute, 4Department of Human Genetics, University of Pittsburgh School of Public Health
We describe a method for the quantitative, real-time measurement of DNA glycosylase and AP endonuclease activities in cell nuclear lysates. The assay yields rates of DNA Repair activity amenable to kinetic analysis and is adaptable for quantification of DNA Repair activity in tissue and tumor lysates or with purified proteins.