1Development and Aging Program, The Sanford Burnham Institute for Medical Research, 2Cardiac Electrophysiology Group, Dept. of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, The Sanford Burnham Institute for Medical Research, 3Biology Department and Heart Institute, San Diego State University
We have developed a Semi-automated Optical Heartbeat Analysis method (SOHA) for analyzing high speed optical recordings from Drosophila, zebrafish and embryonic mouse hearts. We demonstrate the application of our methodology to the analysis of heart function in fruit fly and embryonic mouse hearts.
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.
Driving Simulation in the Clinic: Testing Visual Exploratory Behavior in Daily Life Activities in Patients with Visual Field Defects
Patients with visual deficits after stroke report about different constraints in daily life most likely due to variable compensatory strategies, which are difficult to differentiate in clinical routine. We present a clinical set-up which allows measurement of different compensatory head- and eye-movement-strategies and evaluating their effects on driving performance.
Video-oculography is a very quantitative method to investigate ocular motor performance as well as motor learning. Here, we describe how to measure video-oculography in mice. Applying this technique on normal, pharmacologically-treated or genetically modified mice is a powerful research tool to explore the underlying physiology of motor behaviors.
Isolation of Ribosome Bound Nascent Polypeptides in vitro to Identify Translational Pause Sites Along mRNA
A technique to identify translational pause sites on mRNA is described. This procedure is based on isolation of nascent polypeptides accumulating on ribosomes during in vitro translation of a target mRNA, followed by the size analysis of the nascent chains using a denaturing gel electrophoresis.
Retraining abnormal movement patterns following injury or disease is a key component of physical rehabilitation. Recent advances in technology have permitted accurate assessment of movement during a variety of tasks, with near instantaneous quantification of results. This provides new opportunities for modification of faulty movement patterns in real time.
Eye movement monitoring (or eye tracking) reveals where in space the eyes linger, when and for how long. Here, we demonstrate how eye tracking can be used to investigate the integrity of memory in multiple participant populations, without requiring verbal, or otherwise explicit, reports.
1Department of Physical Electronics, Faculty of Engineering, Tel Aviv University, 2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Washington University in St. Louis, 3Department of Biological Sciences, University of Illinois, 4Department of Cell Research and Immunology, Tel Aviv University
Magnetic modulation biosensing system is utilized to rapidly, sensitively and simply detect biological assays, such as DNA molecules and proteins.
Details methods for high-resolution Ca2+ imaging of smooth muscle within isolated organs, including: preparation of the tissue, image acquisition and data analysis.
Macromolecular trafficking between plant cells can be assessed by transiently expressing a fluorescently-tagged protein of interest and analyzing its intra- and intercellular distribution by confocal microscopy.
1Department of Ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear, 2JoVE Content Production
Here are some highlights from the December 2012 Issue of Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE).
Tactile Conditioning And Movement Analysis Of Antennal Sampling Strategies In Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L.)
In this protocol we show how to condition harnessed honey bees to tactile stimuli and introduce a 2D motion capture technique for analyzing the kinematics of fine-scale antennal sampling pattern.
Drosophila hemocytes disperse over the entirety of the developing embryo. This protocol demonstrates how to mount and image these migrations using embryos with fluorescently labelled hemocytes.
Monitoring Plasmid Replication in Live Mammalian Cells over Multiple Generations by Fluorescence Microscopy
A method of observing individual DNA molecules in live cells is described. The technique is based on the binding of a fluorescently tagged lac repressor protein to binding sites engineered into the DNA of interest. This method can be adapted to follow many recombinant DNAs in live cells over time.
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.
Investigating Social Cognition in Infants and Adults Using Dense Array Electroencephalography (dEEG)
Dense array electroencephalography is being used increasingly to study social cognitive functions in infants and adults. Here we present an established methodology that represents a significant improvement on conventional methodologies for studying EEG in infants and adults.
The main highlights for our May issue include methods for measuring cognition in zero gravity, isolating mosquito immune cells, engineering recombinant SARS vaccines, and detecting tumors with thermal imaging. In addition, procedures for isolating neural stem cells from human fetal brain and culturing antigen-presenting liver cells will also be released.
The monitoring of extracellular neurotransmitter levels in distinct brain regions of freely moving animals offers insights on the link between neurotransmitter release and behavior. In vivo microdialysis coupled with electrochemical detection provides excellent anatomical and chemical resolution; and information on how basal neurotransmission is altered by pharmacological or physiological manipulations.
A Protocol for Comprehensive Assessment of Bulbar Dysfunction in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
1Department of Speech-Language Pathology, University of Toronto, 2ALS/ MN Clinic, Sunnybrook Health Science Centre, 3Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 4Department of Neurology, Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center, 5Department of Neurology, University of Toronto
Objective assessments of the physiological mechanisms that support speech are needed to monitor disease onset and progression in persons with ALS and to quantify treatment effects in clinical trials. In this video, we present a comprehensive, instrumentation-based protocol for quantifying speech motor performance in clinical populations.
1Department of Public Health, Academic Medical Center - University of Amsterdam, 2Department of Epidemiology, Documentation and Health Promotion, Public Health Service of Amsterdam (GGD), 3Department of Biological Psychology, VU University, 4EMGO+ Institute, VU University Medical Center, 5Institute of Health Sciences, VU University, 6Department of Pediatrics, VU University Medical Center
Measurement of autonomic nervous system activity usually confines the researcher and participant to the laboratory, which may provide an intimidating environment to children. The VU University Ambulatory Monitoring System (VU-AMS) device can record cardiac autonomic control in any setting. The VU-AMS proved very amenable to testing in children.
This paper demonstrates methods for the isolation, purification and detection of exosomes, as well as techniques for analysis of their molecular content. These methods are adaptable for exosome isolation from both cell culture media and biological fluids, and can beyond analysis of molecular content also be useful in functional studies.
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.
Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging (FLIM) has emerged as a key technique to image the environment and interaction of specific proteins and dyes in living cells. FLIM of fluorescent molecular rotors allows mapping of viscosity in living cells.
1Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 2Departments of Medicine and Immunology, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, 3Department of Medicine, University at Buffalo School of Medicine
NADPH oxidase is the major source of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in phagocytes. Because of the ephemeral nature of ROS, it is difficult to measure and monitor ROS levels in living animals. A minimally invasive method for serial quantification of ROS in living mice is described.
Time lapse imaging of 3D tissue culture allows studying migratory behavior of individual cells originating from ganglionic eminence in reaction to fractionated protein extract from cerebral cortex.
Invertebrates show an autonomic sympathetic-like response similar to that described for vertebrates. The coordination of the cardio-vascular and ventilatory systems allows for measurement of a biological index in which to assess an organism internal state.
Transthoracic echocardiography offers a noninvasive method for the evaluation of cardiac function in mice. A combination of ultrasound and Doppler imaging modalities can be used to obtain dimensional measurements of the heart and intracardiac blood flow, which together provide an assessment of cardiac systolic and diastolic performance.
This protocol describes how to image protein-protein interactions using a FRET-based proximity assay.
This article describes a protocol for the extraction of translating ribosomes from eukaryotic cells. Once extracted, ribosomes are separated into monosomes and polyribosomes by sucrose gradient fractionation to allow different ribosomal populations to be analyzed. As such, this method is the gold standard for examining the regulation of translation.
Total retinal blood flow is measured by Doppler optical coherence tomography and semi-automated grading software.
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.
In this report, we describe how surface plasmon resonance is used to detect toxin entry into the host cytosol. This highly sensitive method can provide quantitative data on the amount of cytosolic toxin, and it can be applied to a range of toxins.
This protocol is successfully used to quantitatively detect levels and spatial patterns of mRNA expression in multiple tissue types across vertebrate species. The method can detect low abundance transcripts and allows processing of hundreds of slides simultaneously. We present this protocol using expression profiling of avian embryonic brain formation as an example.
1Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery and Inter-University Centre for Medical Technology Stuttgart-Tübingen (IZST), Eberhard Karls University, Tübingen, 2Department of Cell and Tissue Engineering, Fraunhofer Institute of Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology (IGB) Stuttgart, Germany, 3Department for Medical Interfacial Engineering (IGVT), University of Stuttgart, Germany, 4Institute of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, Julius-Maximillians University, Würzburg, Germany
Raman spectroscopy is a suitable technique for the non-contact, label-free analysis of living cells, tissue-engineered constructs and native tissues. Source-specific spectral fingerprints can be generated and analyzed using multivariate analysis.
Standardized, comprehensive and fully quantitative testing of autonomic functions is described. The autonomic tests consist of evaluation of all three major autonomic domains including cardiovagal, adrenergic and sudomotor. The severity and distribution of dysautonomia is quantitated using Composite Autonomic Severity Scores.
Live Cell Imaging of Bacillus subtilis and Streptococcus pneumoniae using Automated Time-lapse Microscopy
This protocol provides a step-by-step procedure to monitor single cell behavior of different bacteria in time using automated fluorescence time-lapse microscopy. Furthermore, we provide guidelines how to analyze the microscopy images.
We describe a super-resolution imaging method to probe the structural organization of the bacterial FtsZ-ring, an essential apparatus for cell division. This method is based on quantitative analyses of photoactivated localization microscopy (PALM) images and can be applied to other bacterial cytoskeletal proteins.
Despite an increase in the use of structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in humans, the study of young pediatric populations remains a challenge. We present a hands-on, step-by-step video protocol including guidelines for clinicians and researchers intending to perform (f)MRI in young children.
The analytical ultracentrifuge (AUC) sample cell holds sample and reference buffer and during experiments and is exposed to high vacuum and rotor speeds up to 60,000 rpm. This video will demonstrate the rigorous attention to detail necessary for assembly, loading and alignment of this very important component of an AUC experiment.
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.
In this video article, we describe a new method allowing the construction of odorant gradients with stable and controllable geometries. We briefly illustrate how these gradients can be used to screen for olfactory defects (full and partial anosmia) and to study more subtle features of chemotaxis behavior.
High-frequency High-resolution Echocardiography: First Evidence on Non-invasive Repeated Measure of Myocardial Strain, Contractility, and Mitral Regurgitation in the Ischemia-reperfused Murine Heart
High frequency Doppler ultrasound is a novel technology for assessing regional myocardial function. This work presents first evidence demonstrating applicability of this versatile imaging platform for the repeated measure of myocardial strain, dp/dt, and mitral regurgitation in the ischemia-reperfused (IR) murine heart.
FSL Constructs: A Simple Method for Modifying Cell/Virion Surfaces with a Range of Biological Markers Without Affecting their Viability
1Biotechnology Research Institute, AUT University and KODE Biotech Ltd, 2Shemyakin Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry RAS, Moscow, Russia
Function-Spacer-Lipid (FSL) constructs allow the surface characteristics of living cells and virions to be modified without loss of vitality. The method requires only simple contact of an FSL construct solution with a cell/virion and spontaneous and stable surface incorporation occurs.
Dopamine replacement pharmacotherapy using L-DOPA is the most commonly used symptomatic treatment of Parkinson’s disease, but is accompanied by side effects including involuntary abnormal movements, termed dyskinesia 1. Here, a protocol for MALDI imaging mass spectrometry is presented that detects changes in rat brain neuropeptide levels related to dyskinesia.
Behavioral Determination of Stimulus Pair Discrimination of Auditory Acoustic and Electrical Stimuli Using a Classical Conditioning and Heart-rate Approach
The application of a classical fear conditioning behavioral paradigm for auditory prosthetic research in rats is described. This paradigm provides a mechanism for identifying both detection of, and discrimination between, distinct acoustic and electrical stimuli using heart-rate as an outcome measure.
Eggs and the extracellular coatings around eggs frequently release peptides, proteins and small molecules that communicate with sperm to guide them to the egg thereby promoting fertilization. Using frog sperm we describe and compare two classes of assays used to detect sperm chemoattraction – sperm accumulation assays and sperm tracking assays.
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.
Modeling Neural Immune Signaling of Episodic and Chronic Migraine Using Spreading Depression In Vitro
Migraine and its transformation to chronic migraine are immense healthcare burdens in need of improved treatment options. We seek to define how neural immune signaling modulates the susceptibility to migraine, modeled in vitro using spreading depression in hippocampal slice cultures, as a means to develop novel therapeutic targets.
1Experimental and Clinical Research Center, A joint cooperation between the Charité Medical Faculty and the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine, 2Berlin Ultrahigh Field Facility (B.U.F.F.), Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine
Tracking of cells using MRI has gained remarkable attention in the past years. This protocol describes the labeling of dendritic cells with fluorine (19F)-rich particles, the in vivo application of these cells, and monitoring the extent of their migration to the draining lymph node with 19F/1H MRI and 19F MRS.
We report a method for introduction, tracking and quantitative analysis of GFP expression in plant cells. This method utilizes a custom-designed robotics system for semi-continuous image collection from large numbers of samples, over time. We also demonstrate the use of ImageJ and ImageReady for analysis of image series.