Growing some flax varieties under nutrient stress results in genomic variation within a subset of the genome and phenotypic variation. A complex insertion at a specific site is associated with growth under various nutrient regimes and with changes in gene expression around this site.
The fabrication of microfluidic channels and their implementation in experiments for studying the chemotactic foraging behaviour of marine microbes within a patchy nutrient seascape and the swimming behaviour of bacteria within shear flow are described.
Spatial Multiobjective Optimization of Agricultural Conservation Practices using a SWAT Model and an Evolutionary Algorithm
1School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, University of Washington, 2Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, Department of Economics, Iowa State University, 3Department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering, North Carolina A&T University, 4Iowa Geological and Water Survey
This work demonstrates an integration of a water quality model with an optimization component utilizing evolutionary algorithms to solve for optimal (lowest-cost) placement of agricultural conservation practices for a specified set of water quality improvement objectives. The solutions are generated using a multi-objective approach, allowing for explicit quantification of tradeoffs.
Here we describe a set of DNA mutation assays that can be combined with the yeast chronological life span model to study the genes/pathways that regulate or contribute to genomic DNA instability during aging.
This video documents methods for collecting coastal marine water samples and processing them for various downstream applications including biomass concentration, nucleic acid purification, cell abundance, nutrient and trace gas analyses.
1Department of Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering, Washington University, 2Department of Biology, Washington University, 3Department of Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering and Department of Biology, Washington University
13C-isotope labeling is a useful technique for determining the cell central metabolism for various types of microorganisms. After cells have been cultured with a specific labeled substrate, GC-MS measurement can reveal functional metabolic pathways based on unique labeling patterns in proteinogenic amino acids.
This video demonstrates a controlled environment approach to study degradation of lignocellulosic plant tissues by aerobic fungi. The ability to control nutrient sources and moisture is a key advantage of agar-block microcosms, but the approach often yields mixed success. We address critical pitfalls to yield reproducible, low-variability results.
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.
We present the procedure for fabrication and operation of a microfluidic device that recreates heterogeneous tumor microenvironments in vitro. The variability in apoptosis within tumor tissue was quantified using fluorescent stains and the effective diffusion coefficient of the chemotherapeutic drug doxorubicin into tumor tissue was evaluated.
We present methods to evaluate how predation risk can alter the chemical quality of herbivore prey by inducing dietary changes to meet demands of heightened stress, and how the decomposition of carcasses from these stressed herbivores slows subsequent plant litter decomposition by soil microbes.
Time-lapse Fluorescence Imaging of Arabidopsis Root Growth with Rapid Manipulation of The Root Environment Using The RootChip
1Department of Plant Biology, Carnegie Institution for Science, 2Howard Hughes Medical Institute, 3Departments of Applied Physics and Bioengineering, Stanford University, 4Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) and Center for Biological Signaling Studies (BIOSS), University of Freiburg
This article provides a protocol for cultivation of Arabidopsis seedlings in the RootChip, a microfluidic imaging platform that combines automated control of growth conditions with microscopic root monitoring and FRET-based measurement of intracellular metabolite levels.
Long-term, High-resolution Confocal Time Lapse Imaging of Arabidopsis Cotyledon Epidermis during Germination
We describe a protocol using chamber slides and media to immobilize plant cotyledons for confocal imaging of the epidermis over several days of development, documenting stomatal differentiation. Fluorophore-tagged proteins can be tracked dynamically by expression and subcellular localization, increasing understanding of their possible roles during cell division and cell-type differentiation.
This protocol demonstrates how to maintain healthy, undifferentiated human embryonic stem (ES) cells.
This article describes the procedure for the formation and visualization of a bacterial biofilm grown within an 8-well chamber slide
1Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, 2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, 3Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of California at Irvine, 4Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine and Department of Biomedical Engineering, Wake Forest University Health Sciences, 5Research Service, Hines Veterans Administration Hospital
In the following sections, we outline procedures for the preparation of alginate microspheres for use in biomedical applications. We specifically illustrate a technique for creating multilayered alginate microspheres for the dual purpose of cell and protein encapsulation as a potential treatment for type 1 diabetes.
Establishment of Microbial Eukaryotic Enrichment Cultures from a Chemically Stratified Antarctic Lake and Assessment of Carbon Fixation Potential
Microbial eukaryotes are both a source of photosynthetically-derived carbon and top predatory species in permanently ice-covered Antarctic lakes. This report describes an enrichment culture approach to isolate metabolically versatile microbial eukaryotes from the Antarctic lake, Lake Bonney, and assesses inorganic carbon fixation potential using a radioisotope assay for Ribulose-1,5-bisphophate carboxylase oxygenase (RubisCO) activity.
In this article we present a general protocol for measuring the replicative life span of yeast mother cells.
A 3D system of culturing human articular chondrocytes in high levels of synovial fluid is described. Synovial fluid reflects the most natural microenvironment for articular cartilage, and can be easily obtained and stored. This system thus can be used for studying cartilage regeneration and for screening therapeutics for treating arthritis.
Protocol describing the application of a flow cell system for growing and analyzing microbial biofilms for Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy (CLSM).
Window on a Microworld: Simple Microfluidic Systems for Studying Microbial Transport in Porous Media
1Vanderbilt Institute for Integrative Biosystems Research and Education, Vanderbilt University, 2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, 3Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, Vanderbilt University, 4Department of Physics and Astronomy, Vanderbilt University, 5Department of Chemical, Materials and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Connecticut, 6Center for Environmental Sciences and Engineering, University of Connecticut
Microfluidic devices can be used to visualize complex natural processes in real time and at the appropriate physical scales. We have developed a simple microfluidic device that mimics key features of natural porous media for studying growth and transport of bacteria in the subsurface.
1Institute for Biological Interfaces, Karlsruhe Research Centre, 2Institute for BioMedical Technology, University of Twente, 3Department of Materials Research, Institute for Heavy Ion Research, 4Institute of Microstructure Technology, Karlsruhe Research Centre, 5Institute for Micro Process Engineering, Karlsruhe Research Centre
We present two processes for the microfabrication of porous polymer chips for three-dimensional cell cultivation. The first one is hot embossing combined with a solvent vapour welding process. The second one uses a recently developed microthermoforming process combined with ion track technology leading to a significant simplification of manufacture.
1Biomedical Engineering Department, Cornell University, 2Neurosurgical Laboratory for Translational Stem Cell Research, Weill Cornell Brain Tumor Center, Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University, 3Cell Morphology Department, Instituto de Investigacion Principe Felipe, 4Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Cornell University
We demonstrate that the over expression of epidermal growth factor receptors (EGFR) enhances the motility of neural stem cells(NSCs) using a novel agarose gel based microfluidic device. This technology can be readily adaptable to other mammalian cell systems where cell sources are scarce, such as human neural stem cells, and the turn around time is critical.
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.
A screening method to detect oxidative cellular environments is to measure the oxidation of CM-H2DCFDA. Once oxidized within a cell, CM-H2DCFDA changes from non-fluorescent into a fluorescent compound. This change in fluorescence is measured by flow cytometry and indicates the number of cells in an oxidative environment.
We developed and validated a small-footprint array of miniature chemostats built from readily available parts for low cost. Physiological and experimental evolution results were similar to larger volume chemostats. The ministat array provides a compact, inexpensive, and accessible platform for traditional chemostat experiments, functional genomics, and chemical screening applications.
The surgical procedure for delivery of embryonic stem cell-derived endothelial cells to the ischemic hindlimb is demonstrated, with non-invasive tracking by bioluminescence imaging.
1Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering / Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry, University of Toronto, 2Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto
Creation of micro-tissues using cylindrical collagen gels, called modules, that contain embedded cells and which surface is coated with endothelial cells.
DNA stable-isotope probing is a cultivation-independent method to identify and characterize active communities of microorganisms that are capable of utilizing specific substrates. Assimilation of substrate enriched in heavy isotope leads to incorporation of labelled atoms into microbial biomass. Density gradient ultracentrifugation retrieves labelled DNA for downstream molecular analyses.
Evaluation of Cancer Stem Cell Migration Using Compartmentalizing Microfluidic Devices and Live Cell Imaging
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2Materials Science Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 3Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 4Carbone Comprehensive Cancer Center and Center for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison
A compartmentalizing microfluidic device for investigating cancer stem cell migration is described. This novel platform creates a viable cellular microenvironment and enables microscopic visualization of live cell locomotion. Highly motile cancer cells are isolated to study molecular mechanisms of aggressive infiltration, potentially leading to more effective future therapies.
Generation of Multivirus-specific T Cells to Prevent/treat Viral Infections after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant
A rapid, simple and cost-effective protocol for the generation of donor-derived multivirus-specific CTLs (rCTL) for infusion to allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) recipients at risk of developing CMV, Adv or EBV infections. This manufacturing process is GMP-compliant and should ensure the broader implementation of T-cell immunotherapy beyond specialized centers.
This study concerns the development and standardization of a valuable methodological protocol to determine long-term (14 days) lethal toxicity exerted by chemical substances, industrial wastewater or sewage and liquid environmental samples on the saltwater crustacean, Artemia franciscana.
A method to precisely generate and to comprehensively characterize morphology of filamentous fungus Aspergillus niger is described, which allows the mathematical correlation of morphological appearance and productivity.
This protocol illustrates a harvesting technique for coccygeal bovine intervertebral discs for organ culture for in vitro organ culture.
The following protocol provides techniques for encapsulating pancreatic β-cells in step-growth PEG-peptide hydrogels formed by thiol-ene photo-click reactions. This material platform not only offers a cytocompatible microenvironment for cell encapsulation, but also permits user-controlled rapid recovery of cell structures formed within the hydrogels.
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.
Alginate Microcapsule as a 3D Platform for Propagation and Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells (hESC) to Different Lineages
1Stem Cell Lab, School of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, The University of New South Wales, 2Siriraj Center of Excellence for Stem cell Research, Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, 3Neuropsychiatric Institute, Prince of Wales Hospital
We have optimized a microencapsulation technique as an effective 3D platform for propagation and differentiation of embryonic stem cells to endoderm and dopaminergic (DA) neurons. It also provides an opportunity for immune-isolation of cells from the host during transplantation. This platform can be adapted for other cell types.
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.
Here we describe a method to efficiently expand and purify large numbers of human NK cells and assess their function.
Cryopreserving and Recovering of Human iPS Cells using Complete KnockOut Serum Replacement Feeder-Free Medium
This protocol describes the detailed procedure for cryopreserving human iPS cells in KnockOut SR cryopreservation medium and recovering these cells in complete KnockOut SR Feeder Free (KSR-FF) medium or feeder-based KnockOut SR medium.
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.
We describe a novel surgical method for catheterizing 'intestinal loops' within the ileum of sheep. Once animals have recovered from surgery and have cleared antibiotics and analgesics, multiple treatments can be deposited directly in loops via the catheters.
Perfusion decellularization is a novel technique to produce whole liver scaffolds that retains the organ's extracellular matrix composition and microarchitecture. Herein, the method of preparing whole organ scaffolds using perfusion decellularization and subsequent repopulation with hepatocytes is described. Functional and transplantable liver grafts can be generated using this technique.
Separation of Single-stranded DNA, Double-stranded DNA and RNA from an Environmental Viral Community Using Hydroxyapatite Chromatography
We describe an efficient method to separate single-stranded DNA, double-stranded DNA and RNA molecules from environmental viral communities. Nucleic acids are fractionated using hydroxyapatite chromatography with increasing concentrations of phosphate-containing buffers. This method permits the isolation of all viral nucleic acid types from environmental samples.
In this protocol, we describe the dissection of placentae from the mouse on pregnancy d10.5, followed by isolation of trophoblast cells using a Percoll gradient. We then demonstrate use of the isolated cells in a matrigel invasion assay.
A major hurdle in current stem cell therapies is determining the most effective method to deliver these cells to host tissues. Here, we describe a chitosan-based delivery method that is efficient and simple in approach, while allowing adipose-derived stem cells to maintain their multipotency.
Quantitative Fitness Analysis (QFA) is a complementary series of experimental and computational methods for estimating microbial culture fitnesses. QFA estimates the effect of genetic mutations, drugs or other applied treatments on microbe growth. Experiments scaling from focussed analysis of single cultures to thousands of parallel cultures can be designed.
Whole-mount Immunohistochemical Analysis for Embryonic Limb Skin Vasculature: a Model System to Study Vascular Branching Morphogenesis in Embryo
We introduce a whole-mount immunohistochemistry and laser scanning confocal microscopy with multiple labelling for analyzing intricate vascular network formation in mouse embryonic limb skin.
Using High Resolution Computed Tomography to Visualize the Three Dimensional Structure and Function of Plant Vasculature
1U.S. Department of Agriculture, 2Department of Viticulture and Enology, University of California - Davis, 3Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, University of Western Sydney, 4Advanced Light Source, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 5Citrus Research & Education Center, University of Florida
High resolution x-ray computed tomography (HRCT) is a non-destructive diagnostic imaging technique that can be used to study the structure and function of plant vasculature in 3D. We demonstrate how HRCT facilitates exploration of xylem networks across a wide range of plant tissues and species.
Micro-particle image velocimetry (μPIV) is used to visualize paired images of micro particles seeded in blood flows which are cross-correlated to give an accurate velocity profile. Shear rate, maximum velocity, velocity profile shape, and flow rate, each of which has clinical applications, can be derived from these measurements.
This paper describes different methods of growing Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms on cultured human airway epithelial cells. These protocols can be adapted to study different aspects of biofilm formation, including visualization of the biofilm, staining of the biofilm, measuring the colony forming units (CFU) of the biofilm, and studying biofilm cytotoxicity.