1Department of Neurology and Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Wake Forest University, 2Department of Human Nutrition, Foods and Exercise, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 3Departments of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Neurology and the Gene Therapy Center , University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
We describe a minimally-invasive and painless method to measure canine hindlimb muscle strength and muscle response to repeated eccentric contractions.
Isometric and Eccentric Force Generation Assessment of Skeletal Muscles Isolated from Murine Models of Muscular Dystrophies
1Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Dental Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 2Department of Physiology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 3Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Dental Medicine, School of Dental Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
Muscle function measurements contribute to the evaluation of potential therapeutics for muscle pathology, as well as to the determination of mechanisms underlying physiology of this tissue. We will demonstrate the preparation of the extensor digitorum longus and diaphragm muscles for functional testing. Protocols for isometric and eccentric contractions will be shown, as well as differences in results between dystrophic muscles, representing a pathological state, and wildtype muscles.
Described here are protocols used to visualize the dynamic process of MG53-mediated cell membrane repair in whole animals and at the cellular level. These methods can be applied to investigate the cell biology of plasma membrane resealing and regenerative medicine.
A non-invasive means to evaluate the success of myoblast transplantation is described. The method takes advantage of a unified fusion reporter gene composed of genes whose expression can be imaged with different imaging modalities. Here, we make use of a fluc reporter gene sequence to target cells via bioluminescence imaging.
Subcutaneous Administration of Muscarinic Antagonists and Triple-Immunostaining of the Levator Auris Longus Muscle in Mice
1Biology Department, Arcadia University, 2Shriners Hospitals Pediatric Research Center, Temple University School of Medicine, 3Shriners Hospitals Pediatric Research Center and Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Temple University School of Medicine
We describe procedures for repeated administration of inhibitors of muscarinic signaling to the levator auris longus (LAL) muscle of young adult mice and for subsequent immunostaining of its neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) in wholemounts. The LAL muscle has unique advantages for revealing in vivo pharmacological effects on NMJs.
The method presented here comprises the precise injury of live zebrafish embryos with high-energy laser pulses and the subsequent analysis of these injuries and their recovery with time. We also show how genetically labeled single or groups of skeletal muscle cells can be tracked during and after laser light induced damage.
Identification of mechanisms underlying muscle damage is crucial. Here we present the histological technique for preparing paraffin-embedded and frozen sections of Drosophila thoracic muscles. This allows analysis of muscle morphology and localization of protein and other muscle cell components.
Cultured muscle cells are an inadequate model to recapitulate innervated muscle in vivo. A functional motor unit can be reproduced in vitro by innervation of differentiated human primary muscle cells using rat embryo spinal cord explants. This article describes how co-cultures of spinal cord explants and muscle cells are established.
We describe an in vivo fluorescence imaging protocol to monitor muscle regeneration by GFP-labeled myoblasts after transplantation into skeletal muscles of both healthy and dystrophic mice. This protocol can be adapted to study muscle regeneration by transplantation of other types of cells and in other muscular conditions as well.
Biophysical Assays to Probe the Mechanical Properties of the Interphase Cell Nucleus: Substrate Strain Application and Microneedle Manipulation
1Brigham and Women's Hospital / Harvard Medical School, Department of Medicine, Cardiovascular Division, 2Weill Institute for Cell and Molecular Biology & Department of Biomedical Engineering, Cornell University
We present two independent, microscope-based tools to measure the induced nuclear and cytoskeletal deformations in single, living adherent cells in response to global or localized strain application. These techniques are used to determine nuclear stiffness (i.e., deformability) and to probe intracellular force transmission between the nucleus and the cytoskeleton.
Evaluation of Muscle Function of the Extensor Digitorum Longus Muscle Ex vivo and Tibialis Anterior Muscle In situ in Mice
Changes in limb muscle contractile and passive mechanical properties are important biomarkers for muscle diseases. This manuscript describes physiological assays to measure these properties in the murine extensor digitorum longus and tibialis anterior muscles.
Adult and Embryonic Skeletal Muscle Microexplant Culture and Isolation of Skeletal Muscle Stem Cells
The micro-dissected explants technique is a robust and reliable method for isolating proliferative skeletal muscle cells from juvenile, adult or embryonic muscles as a source of skeletal muscle stem cells. Uniquely, these cells have been clonally derived to produce skeletal muscle stem cell lines used for in vivo transplantation.
1The Heart Institute, Cincinnati Children Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC), 2TomTec, Imaging Systems GmbH, 3AMID, Advanced Medical Imaging Development SRL, 4The Heart and Vascular Center, The Christ Hospital
An accurate and practical method to measure parameters like strain in myocardial tissue is of great clinical value, since it has been shown, that strain is a more sensitive and earlier marker for contractile dysfunction than the frequently used parameter EF.
Passive mechanical testing of mouse carotid arteries is described, with special consideration for adapting to different specimen ages. The procedures include determining the in vivo length of the artery, mounting it in a pressure myograph, recording data, measuring the unloaded dimensions and analyzing the resulting data.
Microiontophoresis and Micromanipulation for Intravital Fluorescence Imaging of the Microcirculation
Microiontophoresis entails movement of ions from a micropipette in response to a difference in electrical potential between the inside and outside of the micropipette. Biologically active molecules are thereby delivered in proportion to electrical current. We illustrate acetylcholine microiontophoresis in conjunction with micromanipulation to study endothelium-dependent vasodilation in the microcirculation.
A tissue preparation is described for visualization and experimental manipulation of the living microcirculation. In anesthetized male mice, the thin, highly vascularized cremaster muscle is prepared for intravital microscopy to study microvascular networks including arterioles, capillaries and venules. This preparation is readily adapted for rats and hamsters.
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
Neural control and cognitive processes can be studied through eye movements. The VisualEyes software allows an operator to program stimuli on two computer screens independently using a simple, custom scripting language. The system can stimulate tandem eye movements (saccades and smooth pursuit) or opposing eye movements (vergence) or any combination.
1Department of Physiology, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 2Department of Orthopaedics, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 3Department of Diagnostic Radiology, University of Maryland School of Medicine
An in vivo animal model of injury is described. The method takes advantage of the subcutaneous position of the fibular nerve. Velocity, timing of muscle activation, and arc of motion are all pre-determined and synchronized using commercial software. Post injury changes are monitored in vivo using MR imaging/spectroscopy.
This video shows how to use a programmable puller to make patch pipettes and sharp electrodes for electrophysiology. The same procedure can be used to make a variety of glass tools, including injection needles.
This is intended as an introduction to patch clamp recording from Xenopus laevis oocytes. It covers vitelline membrane removal, formation of a gigaohm seal (gigaseal), and the optional conversion of the patch to the outside-out topology.
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.
Programmed electrical stimulation provides the ability to determine conduction properties of the heart, and the possibility to induce and terminate cardiac arrhythmias using various pacing protocols. Using a transvenous catheter, intracardiac electrogram recordings can be obtained in mice following programmed electrical stimulation protocols to identify arrhythmogenic substrates.
Transverse aortic constriction (TAC) in the mouse is a commonly used experimental model to study mechanisms underlying cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure development. Here, we describe procedures to constrict the aorta to create a reproducible degree of cardiac hypertrophy in mice.
Isolation and culture of myofibers is the gold standard in vitro system to study the transition of satellite cells through quiescence, activation and differentiation. Importantly, the single myofiber culture system preserves the myofiber/stem cell association, which is an essential component of the muscle stem cell niche.
Isolation, Characterization and Comparative Differentiation of Human Dental Pulp Stem Cells Derived from Permanent Teeth by Using Two Different Methods
1Department of Stem Cells and Developmental Biology, Cell Science Research Center, Royan Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Technology, ACECR, Tehran, Iran, 2Department of Endocrinology & Female Infertility, Reproductive Biomedicine Center, Royan Institute for Reproductive Biomedicine, ACECR, Tehran, Iran
The method described isolation and characterization of human Dental Pulp Stem Cells (hDPSCs) by using either enzymatic dissociation of pulp (DPSC-ED) or direct outgrowth of stem cells from pulp tissue explants (DPSC-OG). Then followed by in vitro comparative differentiation of both types of hDPSCs into odontoblasts.
1Stem Cell Research Center, Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, 2Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh, 3Department of Orthopedic Surgery, University of Pittsburgh, 4Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, 5Department of Molecular Genetics & Biochemistry, University of Pittsburgh
Isolating adult stem cells from musculoskeletal soft tissues based on the cell's adherence speed to flask.
Delivery of Therapeutic Agents Through Intracerebroventricular (ICV) and Intravenous (IV) Injection in Mice
1Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Bond Life Sciences Center, University of Missouri, 2Department of Biological Sciences, Columbia University, 3Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, Bond Life Sciences Center, University of Missouri
This article demonstrates two very different methods of injection: 1) into the brain (intracerebroventricular) and 2) systemic (intravenous) to introduce the therapeutic agents into the central nervous system of neonatal mice.
A mouse model for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is examined clinically and behaviorally. As a prerequisite for an accompanying immunohistological analysis the preparation of the spinal cord is depicted in detail.
1Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Texas A&M University, 2Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois, 3Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Kettering University, 43Scan, 5Department of Veterinary Integrative Biosciences, Texas A&M University
The full process from brain specimen preparation to serial sectioning imaging using the Knife-Edge Scanning Microscope, to data visualization and analysis is described. This technique is currently used to acquire mouse brain data, but it is applicable to other organs, other species.
1Department of Biochemistry, University of Washington, 2Department of Neurology, University of Washington, 3Division of Genetics, Departments of Pediatrics and Cellular and Molecular Medicine, and the Institute for Genomic Medicine, University of California, San Diego - Rady Children’s Hospital
We describe a protocol for the rapid and sensitive quantification of disease severity in mouse models of cerebellar ataxia. Measures include hind limb clasping, ledge test, gait and kyphosis. This protocol effectively discriminates between affected and non-affected individuals, and detects the progression of affected individuals over time.
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]).
The purpose of this investigation was to assess whether using an infra-red thermal camera is a valid tool for detecting and quantifying the muscle soreness after exercising.
Expansion of Embryonic and Adult Neural Stem Cells by In Utero Electroporation or Viral Stereotaxic Injection
Controlling the expansion of somatic stem cells is a major factor hampering their study and use in therapy. Here we describe a system to temporally control neural stem cells expansion during development and adulthood, which can be used to increase the number of neurons generated in the mouse brain.
Finger-stick Blood Sampling Methodology for the Determination of Exercise-induced Lymphocyte Apoptosis
Exercise is capable of inducing apoptosis in immune cells. There are various measurement limitations, particularly relating to the amount of time required to isolate and treat a blood sample prior to the assessment. Demonstrated is a rapid and minimally invasive procedure for the analysis of exercise-induced lymphocyte apoptosis.
We have developed a device (Twister) to study the regulation of tonic muscle activity during active postural maintenance. Twister measures torsional resistance and muscular responses in standing subjects during twisting of the body axis. The device can be flexibly configured to study various aspects of tonic control across the neck, trunk, and/or hips.
This article will detail the protocol for measuring calpain activity in fixed and living cells using flow cytometry.
We describe detailed procedures for the efficient transfection of plasmid DNA into the fibers of foot muscles of live mice using electroporation and the subsequent visualization of protein expression using fluorescence microscopy.
Non-invasive measurements of neural activity patterns in freely behaving animals are obtained by combining neurophysiological recordings with high speed videography.
Simultaneous Intracellular Recording of a Lumbar Motoneuron and the Force Produced by its Motor Unit in the Adult Mouse In vivo
This new method permits the simultaneous intracellular recording of a single adult mouse motoneuron and the measurement of the force produced by its muscle fibers. The combined investigation of the electrical and mechanical properties of motor units in normal and genetically modified animals is a breakthrough for the study of the neuromuscular system.
The present article presents the details pertaining to the application of resistance training associated to vascular occlusion in IBM patients.
1Department of Physiology and Biophysics, UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, 2Muscle Biology Research Group, University of Missouri-Kansas City, 3Pharmacology division, College of Pharmacy, DHLRI, Ohio State University
We describe a method to directly measure muscle force, muscle power, contractile kinetics and fatigability of isolated skeletal muscles in an in vitro system using field stimulation. Valuable information on Ca2+ handling properties and contractile machinery of the muscle can be obtained using different stimulating protocols.
1Département Nociception et Douleur, Institut des Neurosciences Cellulaires et Intégratives, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), 2Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Columbia University, 3Department of Anesthesiology, Niigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences
Viral vectors allow for targeted gene manipulation. We demonstrate a method for conditional gene expression or ablation in the mouse spinal cord, using stereotaxic injection of a viral vector into the dorsal horn, a prominent site of synaptic contact between primary somatosensory afferents and neurons of the central nervous system.
A Simplified Technique for In situ Excision of Cornea and Evisceration of Retinal Tissue from Human Ocular Globe
The paper describes a simplified technique to excise corneal and to eviscerate retinal tissues from the ocular globe of human cadaveric donors. The technique described here will help to excise good quality tissues to be used for transplantation, surgical or research purposes without damaging other tissues of the ocular globe.
1Sensory Motor Performance Program, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, 2Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, 3Department of Physical Therapy, University of Illinois at Chicago
This video demonstrates modulation of reflex activity, volitional strength and ambulation through clinical and quantitative assessments in individuals with motor incomplete SCI as a result of acute oral administration of a serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI).
We developed a new protocol to improve efficiency of in vitro differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells into motor neurons. The differentiated ES cells acquired motor neurons features as evidenced by expression of neuronal and motor neuron markers using immunohistochemical techniques.
1Center for Proteomics, Smith College, 2Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, Yale University, 3Department of Chemistry, Smith College, 4Department of Biological Sciences and Center for Proteomics, Smith College
A straight-forward set of methods to isolate and determine the identity of the most abundant proteins expressed in skeletal muscle. About 800 spots are discerned on a two-dimensional gel from 10 mg muscle; this allows for the determination of gender-specific protein expression. These methods will give equivalent results in most tissues.
Guide Wire Assisted Catheterization and Colored Dye Injection for Vascular Mapping of Monochorionic Twin Placentas
1Division of Pediatric and Fetal Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, 2Department of Pathology, University of Alberta, 3Department of Obstretics and Gynecology, University of California, San Francisco, 4Department of Radiology, University of California, San Francisco
Vascular mapping of monochorionic (MC) twin placentas after birth provides a means for detailed demonstration of vascular connections between the twins’ circulations. Imbalance of these connections is thought to play a pivotal role in the development of complications of MC twinning including twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome.
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.
FM dyes have been of invaluable help in the understanding of synaptic dynamics. FMs are normally followed under the fluorescent microscope during different stimulation conditions. However, photoconversion of FM dyes combined with electron microscopy allows the visualization of distinct synaptic vesicle pools, among other ultrastructure components, in synaptic boutons.