Our protocol describes how to dissect the rat abdominal mammary gland and how to prepare mammary gland whole mounts. It also describes how to analyze mammary gland morphology using three end-points (number of terminal end buds, epithelial elongation and differentiation) and to use these results to predict mammary cancer risk in rats which were exposed to dietary modifications in utero or during prepuberty.
1College of Pharmacy, Division of Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Texas at Austin, 2The Waggoner Center of Addiction and Alcohol Research, University of Texas at Austin, 3Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, 4Institute for Neuroscience, University of Texas at Austin, 5Department of Psychology, University of Texas at Austin
Drug self-administration and ultrasonic vocalizations (USV) are used as behavioral assessments in animal research, but rarely in combination. The purpose of this article is to describe the advantages of recording USVs during drug self-administration procedures to assess affective responses to drug experience.
Here we present a protocol for performing solid plate-based dietary restriction in C. elegans with killed bacteria.
Recognition of Epidermal Transglutaminase by IgA and Tissue Transglutaminase 2 Antibodies in a Rare Case of Rhesus Dermatitis
1Division of Microbiology, Tulane National Primate Research Center, 2Division of Comparative Pathology, Tulane National Primate Research Center, 3Division of Veterinary Medicine, Tulane National Primate Research Center
Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) is a chronic inflammatory condition characterized by an autoimmune reaction between IgA and epidermal transglutaminase (eTG). DH develops in a very small portion of gluten-sensitive and/or celiac patients. The results of this study indicate that DH can also develop in a rhesus monkey host with symptoms of idiopatic dermatitis.
In order to understand the molecular mechanisms of the ethanol-induced developmental damage, we have developed a zebrafish model of ethanol exposure and are exploring the physical, cellular, and genetic alterations that occur after ethanol exposure1. We then seek to find potential interventions and rapidly test them in this animal model.
Procedure for fertilizing Xenopus oocytes by the host transfer method.
A method allowing for direct pharmacological manipulation of mouse embryos during neurulation that bypasses maternal metabolism is described. The technique can be adapted to study different aspects of neurulation by varying the time point and pharmacological agent.
A step-by-step guide to generating targeted chimeric zebrafish embryos by transplantation at the blastula or gastrula stage.
In this article we present a general protocol for measuring life span of nematodes maintained on solid media with UV-killed bacterial food.
1Department of Biological Sciences and Institute for Neuroscience, George Washington University, 2Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 3Department of Cell and Tissue Biology, University of California San Francisco
Here we describe a molecular readout of long-term olfactory adaptation in Caenorhabditis elegans. The Protein Kinase G, EGL-4, is necessary for stable adaptation responses in the primary sensory neuron pair called AWC. During prolonged odor exposure EGL-4 translocates from the cytosol to nucleus of the AWC.
1Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, School of Medicine, West Virginia University, 2Center for Cardiovascular and Respiratory Sciences, West Virginia University, 3National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
A whole-body nanoparticle aerosol inhalation exposure facility was constructed for nano-sized titanium dioxide (TiO2) inhalation toxicology studies. This system provides nano-TiO2 aerosol test atmospheres that have: 1) a steady mass concentration; 2) a homogenous composition free of contaminants; and 3) a stable particle size distribution during aerosol generation.
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.
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.
1Division of Neonatology, Department of Pediatrics, Leiden University Medical Center, 2Division of Fetal Therapy, Department of Obstetrics, Leiden University Medical Center, 3Department of Obstetrics, Leiden University Medical Center
Twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome and twin anemia polycythemia sequence are two potentially devastating problems in perinatal medicine. Both disorders occur only in monochorionic twins and result from unbalanced blood flow through placental vascular anastomoses. We provide a simple protocol to accurately evaluate the presence of vascular anastomoses using colored dye injection of placental vessels after birth.
A simple assay to measure the sedating effects of ethanol on Drosophila flies, based on the loss of righting reflex, is described.
Cataract is the leading cause of blindness in the world. Solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is the main risk factor for cataract development. An animal model of far UVR-B induced cataract was developed. In this article we describe methods for investigation of cataract formation: exposure to UVR, quantitative RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry.
This article describes a technique for the visualization of the early events of embryogenesis in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.
The plant cuticle is a waxy outer covering on plants that has a primary role in water conservation but is also an important barrier against the entry of pathogenic microorganisms. In this video, we demonstrate the analysis of plant cuticle mutants identified by forward and reverse genetics approaches.
Fetal and perinatal death is a common feature when studying genetic alterations affecting cardiac development. High-frequency ultrasound imaging has improved 2-D resolution and can provide excellent information on early cardiac development and is an ideal method to detect the impact on cardiac structure and function prior to death.
Optimized Analysis of DNA Methylation and Gene Expression from Small, Anatomically-defined Areas of the Brain
A streamlined workflow to study DNA methylation and gene expression changes upon early-life stress is shown. Starting from maternal separation of newborn mice and isolation of discrete brain tissues, we represent a protocol to simultaneously isolate DNA and RNA from brain tissue punches for subsequent bisulfite sequencing and RT-PCR analysis.
A Galvanotaxis Assay for Analysis of Neural Precursor Cell Migration Kinetics in an Externally Applied Direct Current Electric Field
In this protocol we demonstrate how to construct custom chambers that permit the application of a direct current electric field to enable time-lapse imaging of adult brain derived neural precursor cell translocation during galvanotaxis.
Femtosecond-laser direct-writing is frequently used to create three-dimensional (3D) patterns in polymers and glasses. However, patterning metals in 3D remains a challenge. We describe a method for fabricating silver nanostructures embedded inside a polymer matrix using a femtosecond laser centered at 800 nm.
Experimental Methods for Testing the Effects of Neurotrophic Peptide, ADNF-9, Against Alcohol-induced Apoptosis during Pregnancy in C57BL/6 Mice
The experimental designs proposed here focus on studying the effects of alcohol exposure in apoptosis and the application of neurotrophic peptide during pregnancy in fetal brain. A detailed description from the breeding to the collection of fetal brains is described. Techniques for determination of apoptosis are also described in detail.
1Center for Innovative Fuel Cells and Battery Technologies, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 2School of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Georgia Institute of Technology
We present a unique platform for characterizing electrode surfaces in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) that allows simultaneous performance of multiple characterization techniques (e.g. in situ Raman spectroscopy and scanning probe microscopy alongside electrochemical measurements). Complementary information from these analyses may help to advance toward a more profound understanding of electrode reaction and degradation mechanisms, providing insights into rational design of better materials for SOFCs.
We describe the first endurance training protocol for an important genetic model species, Drosophila melanogaster, and outline several assays to chart improvements in mobility following training.
There is an increasing interest in understanding the immunological functions of specific subpopulations of cells in Peyer's patches (PPs), the primary inductive sites of gut-associated lymphoid tissues. Here we outline parallel protocols for preparing PP single cell preparations for flow cytometric analysis and PP cryosections for immunostaining.
Imprinting is a phenomenon in plant and mammal reproduction. DNA methylation plays an important role in mechanisms of imprinting. Isolating endosperm and determining methylation status of imprinted genes in Arabidopsis can be difficult. In this protocol, we describe how to isolate endosperm and determine methylation by bisulfite sequencing.
A Novel Surgical Approach for Intratracheal Administration of Bioactive Agents in a Fetal Mouse Model
1Molecular Virology and Gene Therapy, KU Leuven, 2Department of Woman and Child, KU Leuven, 3Neurobiology and Gene Therapy, KU Leuven, 4Division of Nuclear Medicine, KU Leuven, 5Biomedical NMR Unit/ MoSAIC, KU Leuven
We developed a novel surgical approach for intratracheal administration of bioactive agents into the mouse fetus. The delivery route is more efficient in targeting the fetal mouse lungs than the commonly used intra-amniotic injection. This procedure has to date not been described in a mouse model.
Single-molecule Imaging of Gene Regulation In vivo Using Cotranslational Activation by Cleavage (CoTrAC)
1Department of Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 3Department of Physics, Jilin University
We describe a fluorescence microscopy method, Co-Translational Activation by Cleavage (CoTrAC), to image the production of protein molecules in live cells with single-molecule precision without perturbing the protein's functionality. This method has been used to follow the stochastic expression dynamics of a transcription factor, the λ repressor CI 1.
Dry Oxidation and Vacuum Annealing Treatments for Tuning the Wetting Properties of Carbon Nanotube Arrays
This article describes a simple method to fabricate vertically aligned carbon nanotube arrays by CVD and to subsequently tune their wetting properties by exposing them to vacuum annealing or dry oxidation treatment.
1UCSF Diabetes Center and Department of Cell and Tissue Biology, University of California, San Francisco, 2Department of Biology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, 3National Institute of Nutrition and Seafood Research, Bergen, Norway
Primary white preadipocytes isolated from white adipose tissues in mice can be differentiated into beige/brite cells. Presented here is a reliable cellular model system to study the molecular regulation of "browning" of white fat.
1Department of Surgery, University of California, 2Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research, University of California, 3Biomedical Sciences Program, University of California
The mouse model of in utero transplantation is a versatile tool that can be used to study the potential clinical applications of stem cell transplantation and gene therapy in the fetus. In this protocol, we present a general approach to performing this technique
1Division of Neurology, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, 2Neuroscience Graduate Group, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, 3Department of Pediatrics, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
A multi-faceted approach to investigating functional changes to hippocampal circuitry is explained. Electrophysiological techniques are described along with the injury protocol, behavioral testing and regional dissection method. The combination of these techniques can be applied in similar fashion for other brain regions and scientific questions.
Isolation of postimplantation-stage embryos allows one to study gene patterning and analyze cell-lineage decision making processes during embryonic development, but proper dissection of the early embryo can be challenging. This protocol describes a method for isolating early primitive-streak-stage embryos (~6.5 days post coitum [dpc]).
Early embryonic lung organ culture is a very useful system to study epithelial-mesenchymal interactions. Both epithelial and mesenchymal morphogenesis proceeds under specific conditions that can be readily manipulated in this system.
Here we describe methods to test C. elegans associative learning and short- and long-term associative memory. These population assays employ the worms abilities to chemotax toward volatile odorants, and form positive associations upon pairing food with the chemoattractant butanone. Increasing the number of conditioning periods induces long-term memory.
We present a novel method for microgavage of larval zebrafish utilizing standard embryo microinjection and stereomicroscopy equipment. We demonstrate that microgavage is a safe and efficient technique useful for delivering controlled amounts of diverse materials specifically into the larval zebrafish intestinal lumen.
1Meakins-Christie Laboratories, Department of Medicine, McGill University, 2SCIREQ Scientific Respiratory Equipment Inc.
The present protocol provides a detailed step-by-step description of the procedures required to execute measurements of respiratory system mechanics as well as the assessment of airway responsiveness to inhaled methacholine in mice using the forced oscillation technique (flexiVent; SCIREQ Inc, Montreal, Qc, Canada).
A simple method to establish primary murine colon tumor organoid is described. This method utilizes the feature that colon tumor cells survive and grow into organoids in media containing limited growth factors, whereas normal colon epithelial do not.
An Analytical Tool-box for Comprehensive Biochemical, Structural and Transcriptome Evaluation of Oral Biofilms Mediated by Mutans Streptococci
1Center for Oral Biology, University of Rochester Medical Center, 2State Key Laboratory of Oral Diseases, Sichuan University, 3Department of General Medicine, Glostrup Hospital, Glostrup, Denmark, 4Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Rochester Medical Center
Biofilms formed on tooth surfaces are highly complex and exposed to constant innate and exogenous environmental challenges, which modulate their architecture, physiology and transcriptome. We developed a toolbox to examine the composition, structural organization and gene expression of oral biofilms, which can be adapted to other areas of biofilm research.
1Solomon H. Snyder Department of Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 2Department of Neurology, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 3Department of Ophthalmology, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 4Center for High-Throughput Biology, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 5Institute for Cell Engineering, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
A method for the incorporation of plasmid DNA into murine retinal cells for the purpose of performing either gain- or loss of function studies in vivo is presented. This method capitalizes on the transient increase in permeability of cell plasma membranes induced by the application of an external electrical field.
We are developing a dynamic adaptive exposure technique using our scanning beam digital X-ray system. Rather than exposing an object uniformly, the exposure is adapted depending on the opacity of the object. Here we show an experiment on an anthropomorphic phantom that resulted in a dose saving of 30%.
Drosophila melanogaster is a powerful model organism for exploring the molecular basis of longevity regulation. This protocol will discuss the steps involved in generating a reproducible, population-based measurement of longevity as well as potential pitfalls and how to avoid them.
Animal models of relapse, known as reinstatement procedures, have been used extensively to study the role of stress in relapse to drug seeking. Here, we report on a method for inducing the reinstatement of cocaine seeking in laboratory rats via acute exposures to mild, intermittent electric footshock.
Live Dissection of Drosophila Embryos: Streamlined Methods for Screening Mutant Collections by Antibody Staining
We describe a streamlined protocol for generating "fillet" preparations of Drosophila embryos of specific genotypes. This protocol allows efficient execution of a variety of genetic screens. It also allows excellent visualization of structures in the late embryo.
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.
1Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital, 2Toronto Centre for Phenogenomics, Mount Sinai Hospital, 3Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, 4Department of Psychology, University of Toronto, 5Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
Here we describe a detailed protocol for examination of sociability in mice by using Crawley's sociability and preference for social novelty test. We describe the advantages and possible applications for this procedure, including critical details important for correct interpretation of the results.
Surgical Transplantation of Mouse Neural Stem Cells into the Spinal Cords of Mice Infected with Neurotropic Mouse Hepatitis Virus
1Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, University of California, Irvine, 2Sue and Bill Gross Stem Cell Center, University of California, Irvine, 3Institute for Immunology, University of California, Irvine
The transplantation of mouse neural stem cells (NSCs) into the spinal cords of mice with established demyelination is detailed. The preparation of NSCs, the laminectomy of thoracic vertebra 9 (T9), and transplantation of NSCs is outlined along with the pre- and post-operative care of the mice.
Using Quantitative Real-time PCR to Determine Donor Cell Engraftment in a Competitive Murine Bone Marrow Transplantation Model
Determining donor cell engraftment presents a challenge in mouse bone marrow transplant models that lack well-defined phenotypical markers. We described a methodology to quantify male donor cell engraftment in female transplant recipient mice. This method can be used in all mouse strains for the study of HSC functions.
Oral Administration of Rotenone using a Gavage and Image Analysis of Alpha-synuclein Inclusions in the Enteric Nervous System
Parkinson's disease has been related to the exposure to pesticides. Here we show a method to deliver pesticides using a gastric tube at the desired concentration and a method to analyze their effect in alpha-synuclein accumulation in the enteric nervous system.