When working in a laboratory, it is imperative to minimize sources of contamination. Aseptic technique refers to procedures that permit transfer of cultures and reagents while avoiding contact with non-sterile surfaces. Serological pipettes and micropipettors are used to measure precise volumes without compromising sterility of solutions used in experiments.
Aqueous two-phase systems were used to simultaneously pattern multiple populations of cells. This fast and easy method for cell patterning takes advantage of the phase separation of aqueous solutions of dextran and polyethylene glycol and the interfacial tension that exists between the two polymer solutions.
When working with media and reagents used to culture microorganisms, aseptic technique must be practiced to ensure contamination is minimized. A variety of plating methods are routinely used to isolate, propagate, or enumerate bacteria and phage, all of which incorporate procedures that maintain the sterility of experimental materials.
Karyotyping is a simple and useful technique widely used for detecting genetic alterations. Here we describe a step by step protocol for chromosome spread preparation of human embryonic stem cells for monitoring the chromosomal status of these cells maintained in culture.
PCR has emerged as a common technique in many molecular biology laboratories. Provided here is a quick guide to several conventional PCR protocols. Because each reaction is a unique experiment, optimal conditions required to generate a product vary. Understanding the variables in a reaction will greatly enhance troubleshooting efficiency, thereby increasing the chance to obtain the desired result.
Harvesting Murine Alveolar Macrophages and Evaluating Cellular Activation Induced by Polyanhydride Nanoparticles
Herein, we describe protocols for harvesting murine alveolar macrophages, which are resident innate immune cells in the lung, and examining their activation in response to co-culture with polyanhydride nanoparticles.
Ex Vivo Red Blood Cell Hemolysis Assay for the Evaluation of pH-responsive Endosomolytic Agents for Cytosolic Delivery of Biomacromolecular Drugs
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, 2Vanderbilt Institute for Nanoscale Science & Engineering, Vanderbilt University, 3Interdisciplinary Materials Science Program, Vanderbilt University, 4Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, 5Department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, Vanderbilt University, 6Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University
A hemolysis assay can be used as a rapid, high-throughput screen of drug delivery systems' cytocompatibility and endosomolytic activity for intracellular cargo delivery. The assay measures the disruption of erythrocyte membranes as a function of environmental pH.
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.
Isolation and Enrichment of Rat Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) and Separation of Single-colony Derived MSCs
Rat MSCs were isolated from femurs and tibias and then enriched by magnetic cell sorting. Sorted cells were confirmed for the expression of surface markers by flow cytometry. These cells were also cultured at clonal density to form single colonies and then these colonies were separated by cloning cylinders.
MAME Models for 4D Live-cell Imaging of Tumor: Microenvironment Interactions that Impact Malignant Progression
We have developed 3D coculture models for live-cell imaging in real-time of interactions among breast tumor cells and other cells in their microenvironment that impact progression to an invasive phenotype. These models can serve as preclinical screens for drugs to target paracrine-induced proteolytic, chemokine/cytokine and kinase pathways implicated in invasiveness.
A method for photo-encapsulation of cells in a crosslinked PEG hydrogel is described. Hypoxic signaling within encapsulated murine insulinoma (MIN6) aggregates is tracked using a fluorescent marker system. This system allows serial examination of cells within a hydrogel scaffold and correlation of hypoxic signaling with changes in cell phenotype.
The steps necessary for daily tuning and optimization of the performance of a CyTOF mass cytometer are described. Comments on optimal sample preparation and flow rate are discussed
Isolation of Native Soil Microorganisms with Potential for Breaking Down Biodegradable Plastic Mulch Films Used in Agriculture
1Biology Department, Western Washington University, 2Washington State University Northwestern Research and Extension Center, 3Department of Plant and Soil Science, Texas Tech University
Plastic films labeled "biodegradable" are commercially available for agricultural use as mulches. Tillage represents an attractive disposal method, but degradation under field conditions is poorly understood. The purpose of this study was to develop methods for isolating native soil fungi and bacteria that colonize plastic mulch films after field burial.
1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 2Scholars Academy/MARC Scholar, University of Houston-Downtown, 3Genes and Development Graduate Program, University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, 4Neuroscience Graduate Program, University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
In this article, we demonstrate assays to study thermal nociception in Drosophila larvae. One assay involves spatially-restricted (local) stimulation of thermal nociceptors1,2 while the second involves a wholesale (global) activation of most or all such neurons3. Together, these techniques allow visualization and quantification of the behavioral functions of Drosophila nociceptive sensory neurons.
Use of Interferon-γ Enzyme-linked Immunospot Assay to Characterize Novel T-cell Epitopes of Human Papillomavirus
1Department of Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Basic Medical Sciences, China Medical University, 2Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, 3Department of Pathology, College of Medicine, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Characterizing T-cell epitopes of pathogens that cause localized infections such as human papillomavirus is a challenge because of limited number of T cells in circulation. A method is described in which rare T cells were isolated and were characterized starting with a very small number of cells.