Zebrafish cell transplantation enables the combination of genetics and embryology to generate tissue specific chimeras. This video demonstrates gastrula staged cell transplantations that have allowed our lab to investigate the roles of astroglial populations and specific guidance cues during commissure formation in the forebrain.
We provide a detailed protocol for preparing primary cells dissociated from Drosophila embryos. The ability to carry out the effective RNAi perturbation, together with other molecular, biochemical and cell imaging methods will allow a variety of questions to be addressed in Drosophila primary cells.
A step-by-step guide to generating targeted chimeric zebrafish embryos by transplantation at the blastula or gastrula stage.
Manipulation and In Vitro Maturation of Xenopus laevis Oocytes, Followed by Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, to Study Embryonic Development
1Wellcome Trust/Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute, University of Cambridge, 2Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge
We describe methods of manipulating Xenopus laevis immature oocytes, in vitro maturation of oocytes to eggs, and intracytoplasmic sperm injection. This protocol allows degradation of some maternal proteins and overexpression of genes of interest at fertilization, and hence is valuable to study roles of specific factors in early embryonic development.
Published February 9, 2015. Keywords: Developmental Biology, Xenopus oocyte, oocyte maturation, Intracytoplasmic sperm injection, embryonic development, maternal factors, maternal depletion, micromanipulation, gene interference
1Division of Systems Biology, MRC National Institute for Medical Research
The question of how chromatin regulators and chromatin states affect the genome in vivo is key to our understanding of how early cell fate decisions are made in the developing embryo. ChIP-Seq—the most popular approach to investigate chromatin features at a global level—is outlined here for Xenopus embryos.
Published February 26, 2015. Keywords: Developmental Biology, Chromatin immunoprecipitation, next-generation sequencing, ChIP-Seq, developmental biology, Xenopus embryos, cross-linking, transcription factor, post-sequencing analysis, DNA occupancy, metagene, binding motif, GO term
Production of Transgenic Xenopus laevis by Restriction Enzyme Mediated Integration and Nuclear Transplantation
This video protocol demonstrates a method for generating transgenic Xenopus laevis by introduction of transgenes into sperm nuclei followed by nuclear transplantation into unfertilized eggs.
Expression of Fluorescent Proteins in Branchiostoma lanceolatum by mRNA Injection into Unfertilized Oocytes
1Département de Biologie du Développement et Cellules Souches, Institut Pasteur, 2Laboratoire de Biologie du Développement de Villefranche-sur-Mer (UMR7009 CNRS/UPMC Univ Paris 06), Sorbonne Universités, 3Equipe Epigenetic Control of Normal and Pathological Hematopoiesis, Centre de Recherche en Cancérologie de Marseille, 4Unité de Dynamique des Interactions Membranaires Normales et Pathologiques, CNRS UMR5235/DAA/cc107/Université Montpellier II, 5Plateforme BioEmergences IBiSA FBI, CNRS-NED, Institut de Neurobiologie Alfred Fessard
We report here the robust and efficient expression of fluorescent proteins after mRNA injection into unfertilized oocytes of Branchiostoma lanceolatum. The development of the microinjection technique in this basal chordate will pave the way for far-reaching technical innovations in this emerging model system, including in vivo imaging and gene-specific manipulations.…
JoVE Science Education
The zebrafish (Danio rerio) has become a popular model for studying genetics and developmental biology. The transparency of these animals at early developmental stages permits the direct visualization of tissue morphogenesis at the cellular level. Furthermore, zebrafish are amenable to genetic manipulation, allowing researchers to determine the effect of gene expression on the development of a vertebrate with a high degree of genetic similarity to humans. This video provides a brief overview of the major phases of zebrafish development, with particular focus on the first 24 hours post fertilization (hpf). The discussion begins with a zygote consisting of a single cell, or blastomere, atop a large ball of yolk. Cleavage of the blastomere is then shown to produce an embryo containing thousands of cells within a matter of hours. Next, the dramatic cellular movements known as epiboly and gastrulation are explained, revealing how they contribute to reshaping a mass of cells into a moving embryo with a beating heart in just 1 day. The presentation follows embryo development through the hatching phase, when they become swimming, feeding larvae. Important considerations for caring for larvae are incorporated, including a brief review of how fish are raised to adulthood in a dedicated facility known as the nursery. Finally, the video concludes with some commo…
The fate of an individual embryonic cell can be influenced by inherited molecules and/or by signals from neighboring cells. Utilizing fate maps of the cleavage stage Xenopus embryo, single blastomeres can be identified for culture in isolation to assess the contributions of inherited molecules versus cell-cell interactions.
Published January 26, 2013. Keywords: Developmental Biology, Cellular Biology, Molecular Biology, Anatomy, Physiology, Biochemistry, Xenopus laevis, fate mapping, lineage tracing, cell-cell signaling, cell fate, blastomere, embryo, in situ hybridization, animal model
1Davis Center for Regenerative Biology and Medicine, MDI Biological Laboratory
We present a protocol for capturing the dynamics of zebrafish larval tail fin regeneration on a whole-tissue scale using brightfield-based stereomicroscopy. This technique enables capturing the regeneration dynamics with single cell resolution. This methodology can be adapted to any stereomicroscope equipped with a CCD camera and time-lapse software.
1Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, State University of New York, Upstate Medical University, 2Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, Eccles Institute of Human Genetics, University of Utah
Cilia-generated fluid flow in Kupffer’s Vesicle (KV) controls left-right patterning of the zebrafish embryo. Here, we describe a technique to modulate gene function specifically in KV cells. In addition, we show how to deliver fluorescent beads into KV to visualize fluid flow.
Published March 31, 2013. Keywords: Developmental Biology, Genetics, Cellular Biology, Neurobiology, Neuroscience, Molecular Biology, Bioengineering, Biophysics, Anatomy, Physiology, Cilia, Zebrafish, Danio rerio, Gene Knockdown Techniques, Left-right asymmetry, cilia, Kupffer's Vesicle, morpholinos, microinjection, animal model
A method is described to photoactivate single cells containing a caged fluorescent protein using two-photon absorption from a Ti:Sapphire femtosecond laser oscillator. To fate map the photoactivated cell, immunohistochemistry is used. This technique can be applied to any cell type.
1Biology Department, Skidmore College
Developmental processes such as proliferation, patterning, differentiation, and axon guidance can be readily modeled in the zebrafish spinal cord. In this article, we describe a mounting procedure for zebrafish embryos, which optimizes visualization of these events.
This video demonstrates the preparation of primary neuronal cultures from the brains of late stage Drosophila pupae. Views of live cultures show neurite outgrowth and imaging of calcium levels using Fura-2.
1Department of Biochemistry, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University, 2Macromolecular Therapeutics Development Facility, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University, 3Developmental and Molecular Biology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University
A click-chemistry based method that allows for the rapid, noninvasive, and robust labeling of alkyne-tagged glycans in zebrafish embryos is described. Fucosylated glycans in the enveloping layer of zebrafish embryos in the late gastrulation stage were imaged in this study.
Microinjection is a well-established and effective method for introducing foreign substances into fertilized zebrafish embryos. Here, we demonstrate a robust microinjection technique for performing mRNA overexpression, and morpholino oligonucleotide gene knockdown studies in zebrafish.
JoVE Science Education
Fate mapping is a technique used to understand how embryonic cells divide, differentiate, and migrate during development. In classic fate mapping experiments, cells in different areas of an embryo are labeled with a chemical dye and then tracked to determine which tissues or structures they form. Technological improvements now allow for individual cells to be marked and traced throughout embryonic development and adulthood. This video reviews the concepts behind fate mapping, and then details a fate mapping protocol in zebrafish using photoactivatable fluorescent proteins. Finally, specific applications and modifications of this unique technique are discussed.…
This video demonstrates the preparation of primary neuronal cultures from midgastrula stage Drosophila embryos. Views of live cultures show cells 1 hour after plating and differentiated neurons after 2 days of growth in a bicarbonate-based defined medium. The neurons are electrically excitable and form synaptic connections.
Published June 2, 2007. Keywords:
Xenopus embryonic ectoderm has become an attractive model for studies of cell polarity. An assay is described, in which subcellular distribution of fluorescent proteins is assessed in ectoderm cells. This protocol will help address questions related to spatial control of signaling.