Analysis of rodent cerebrovascular anatomy plays an important role in experimental stroke research. In this context, intravascular perfusion with colored latex has been considered as a standard tool for several years. However, this technique implies distinct technical limitations, which undermine its reproducibility. Here, we describe a simple method to visualize cerebral vessels in a reproducible manner. Injection of a mixture of two commercially available carbon black inks through the left myocardial ventricle results in adequate filling of cerebral vessels with high contrast visualization. We have successfully applied this technique to identify anastomotic points between cerebral vascular territories of mice with different genetic backgrounds. We finally give evidence that this novel and simple method for vessel staining can be combined with triphenyltetrazolium chloride (TTC) staining - a widely used tool to observe and analyze infarct volumes in mice.
The Morris Water Maze is a behavioral task to test hippocampal-dependent learning and memory. It has been widely used in the study of neurobiology, neuropharmacology and neurocognitive disorders in rodent models.
Habituation and prepulse inhibition of startle are operational measures of sensory gating. Sensory gating is disrupted in schizophrenia, and some other mental disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. We here describe a standard protocol to assess short-term and long-term habituation as well as prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle responses in rats and mice.
Play fighting in the rat involves attack and defense of the nape of the neck, which if contacted, is gently nuzzled with the snout. Because the movements of one animal are countered by the actions of its partner, play fighting is a complex, dynamic interaction. This dynamic complexity raises methodological problems about what to score for experimental studies. We present a scoring schema that is sensitive to the correlated nature of the actions performed. Two experiments illustrate how these measurements can be used to detect the effect of brain damage on play fighting even when there is no effect on overall playfulness. That is, the schema presented here is designed to detect and evaluate changes in the content of play following an experimental treatment.
1Department of Psychiatry, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 2Tulane University School of Medicine, 3Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 4The Program in Neuroscience, University of Maryland
The forced swim test is validated as an experimental approach to assess potential antidepressant efficacy in rodents. Experimental animals are placed in a tank of water and escape-related mobility behavior is quantified. The common procedures for the mouse version of this test are described.
Intraluminal Middle Cerebral Artery Occlusion (MCAO) Model for Ischemic Stroke with Laser Doppler Flowmetry Guidance in Mice
The intraluminal middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model is the most frequent used model among experimental ischemic stroke models. Here we will demonstrate the entire model in detail with the guide of Laser Doppler flowmetry, and its representative results.
In this protocol we describe a method of operant learning using sensory stimuli as a reinforcer in the mouse. It requires no prior training or food restriction, and it allows the study of motivated behavior without the use of a pharmacological or natural reinforcer such as food.
Mice and rats, due to their innate cautiousness, are initially slow in consuming a novel food, particularly in a novel place. This hyponeophagia can readily be measured in the laboratory, even though laboratory animals are much less anxious than their wild counterparts
Burrowing, nesting, and hoarding are species-typical activities that mice readily perform in the laboratory. This article describes how they can be easily and cheaply assessed. These protocols are extremely sensitive to mouse strain, brain lesions and diseases. Moreover they constitute “environmental enrichment” for the mice, and embody the “Refinement” aspect of the “3 Rs”18.
Numerous genetic manipulations and/or intramyocardial injections of genes, proteins, cells, and/or biomaterials are superimposed upon the dimension of time in studies of acute ischemia/ reperfusion injury and chronic remodeling in mice. This video illustrates the microsurgical procedures for ischemia/reperfusion, permanent coronary artery ligation, and intramyocardial injection studies.
Filamentous occlusion of the Middle cerebral artery is a common model for studying ischemic stroke in mice.
The light/dark transition test is one of the most widely used tests to measure anxiety-like behavior in mice. Here, we present a movie that shows detailed procedures on how we conduct the test.
This technique provides a method to harvest, normalize and quantify intracellular growth of bacterial pathogens that are pre-cultivated in natural protozoan host cells prior to infections of mammalian cells. This method can be modified to accommodate a wide variety of host cells for the priming stage as well as target cell types.
We demonstrate a protocol in which administration of the genotoxic agent azoxymethane (AOM) followed by three cycles of the pro-inflammatory agent dextran sulfate sodium (DSS) rapidly and consistently generates colon tumors in mice with morphologic and molecular similarities to those seen in human colitis-associated cancer.
1Laboratory of Molecular Immunology and Immunotherapy, Blood Research Institute, 2Department of Microbiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, 3Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, Blood Research Institute, 4City of Milwaukee Health Department Laboratory, 5Division of Hematology-Oncology/BMT, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, Medical College of Wisconsin, 6Division of Hematology and Oncology, Dept Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin
This method describes the use of Infrared dye based imaging system for detection of H1N1 in bronchioalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid of infected mice at a high sensitivity. This methodology can be performed in a 96- or 384-well plate, requires <10 μl volume of test material and has the potential for concurrent screening of multiple pathogens.
1UMR CNRS 5557 Ecologie Microbienne, Université Lyon 1, Université de Lyon, 2Département Biosciences, INSA de Lyon, Université de Lyon, 3INSERM U758, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Université de Lyon, 4Laboratoire de Génie Civil et Ingénierie Environnementale, INSA de Lyon, Université de Lyon
The design of a synthetic operon encoding both the secretory apparatus and the structural monomers of curli fibers is described. Overproduction of these amyloids and adherent polymers allows a measurable gain of adherence of the E. coli chassis1. Easy ways to visualize and quantify adherence are explained.
To understand a link between the immune response and behavior, we describe a method to measure locomotor behavior in Drosophila during bacterial infection as well as the ability of flies to mount an immune response by monitoring survival, bacterial load, and real-time activity of a key regulator of innate immunity, NFκB.
We provide a simple, semi-quantitative method to investigate biofilm formation in vitro. This method takes advantage of the Zeiss stemi 2000-C Dissecting Microscope (with camera attachment) to monitor both the timing and pattern of biofilm formation, as assessed by the development of wrinkled colonies.
Osmotic Avoidance in Caenorhabditis elegans: Synaptic Function of Two Genes, Orthologues of Human NRXN1 and NLGN1, as Candidates for Autism
Neurexins and neuroligins are membrane-neuron adhesion proteins which perform essential roles in synaptic differentiation and transmission. Neuroligin deficient mutants of C. elegans are defective in detecting osmotic strength, but when they also contain a mutation in the gene coding neurexin, they recover the wild type phenotype.
This protocol is a simple bacterial adhesion assay consisting in counting the numbers of bacterial colony forming units that are adhered onto cultured cells. The assay is robust, independent of the adhesin studied, and numerous variations are used in most laboratories working on bacterial pathogenesis.
We present a simple method to produce microfluidic devices capable of applying similar dynamic conditions to multiple distinct strains, without the need for a clean room or soft lithography.
1Department of Psychiatry, University of Maryland School of Medicine, 2Tulane University School of Medicine, 3The Program in Neuroscience, University of Maryland, 4Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, University of Maryland School of Medicine
The tail-suspension test is validated as an experimental procedure to assess antidepressant efficacy of drug treatments in mice. Mice are suspended by their tails for six minutes and escape-related behaviors are assessed. We describe procedures used in conducting the tail suspension test.
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.
In this video, we demonstrate the procedure of CD40-activation and expansion of murine B cells from splenocytes of C57BL/6 mice, which can be used as a model antigen-presenting cell (APC) to study induction of immunity.
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.
Most studies of herpetic corneal disease use a primary infection model. However, primary infection with HSV-1 does not typically lead to human disease. Here we describe a recurrent model of herpetic corneal disease, which more closely mimics human disease.
The mouse model of cecal ligation and puncture as a valuable tool for the study of human sepsis.
Purification and Visualization of Lipopolysaccharide from Gram-negative Bacteria by Hot Aqueous-phenol Extraction
We describe a modified hot aqueous-phenol extraction method for purifying lipopolysaccharide (LPS) from Gram-negative bacteria. Once extracted, the LPS can be subsequently analyzed by SDS-PAGE and visualized by direct staining or Western immunoblot.
Infection of the prostate may be a contributing factor in mediating pelvic pain in chronic prostatitis. We describe the procedure for preparation of standardized bacterial inoculum, instillation of bacteria into the urethra of male mice and methodology for measuring tactile allodynia in mice over time.
A robust approach to monitor the delivery of organelles to the acidic lumen of the yeast vacuole for degradation and recycling is described. The method relies on the specific labeling of target organelles with a genetically encoded dual-emission fluorescence pH-biosensor, and visualization of individual cells using fluorescence microscopy.
Monitoring of Ubiquitin-proteasome Activity in Living Cells Using a Degron (dgn)-destabilized Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP)-based Reporter Protein
A method to monitor ubiquitin-proteasome activity in living cells is described. A degron-destabilized GFP- (GFP-dgn) and a stable GFP-dgnFS fusion protein are generated and transduced into the cell using a lentiviral expression vector. This technique allows to generate a stable GFP-dgn/GFP-dgnFS expressing cell line in which ubiquitin-proteasome activity can be easily assessed using epifluorescence or flow cytometry.
1Entomology, International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Cali, Colombia, 2Sustainable Perennial Crops Laboratory, Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Beltsville, Maryland, USA
This protocol demonstrates two inoculation methods to introduce the fungal entomopathogen Beauveria bassiana as an endophyte in the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris), in preparation for subsequent evaluations of endophytic biological control.
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.
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.
A simple assay to measure the sedating effects of ethanol on Drosophila flies, based on the loss of righting reflex, is described.
Trichuris muris infection is an intestinal model of Th2 immunity where resistant mice generate a protective Th2 response and susceptible mice generate a pathological Th1 response.
1Genetic Engineering and Functional Genomics Unit, Frontier Technology Center, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University, 2Institute for Comprehensive Medical Science Division of Systems Medicine, Fujita Health University
The elevated plus maze test is one of the most widely used tests for measuring anxiety-like behavior in mice. Here, we present a movie showing the detailed procedures for conducting the test.
1Department of Chemistry, Pennsylvania State University, 2Center for Developmental and Health Genetics, Pennsylvania State University, 3Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Pennsylvania State University, 4Huck Institute of the Life Sciences, Pennsylvania State University, 5California NanoSystems Institute, University of California, Los Angeles, 6Semel Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California, Los Angeles
The Lashley III maze is a route-learning task that does not rely on aversive stimuli or visual cues. It is thus a highly attractive option for evaluating learning and memory, especially in aging mice or otherwise where stress is a consideration.
In this article we present a general protocol for measuring the replicative life span of yeast mother cells.
1Department of Orthopaedics, The Warren Alpert Brown Medical School of Brown University and the Rhode Island Hospital, 2Center for Restorative and Regenerative Medicine, VA Medical Center, Providence, RI, 3University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
We designed a novel mechanical loading bioreactor that can apply uniaxial or biaxial mechanical strain to a cartilage biocomposite prior to transplantation into an articular cartilage defect.
1Genetics Program, Michigan State University, 2Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University, 3Human Biology Program, Michigan State University, 4Department of Plant Pathology, Michigan State University
Sexual crosses and isolation of recombinant progeny are important research tools for the filamentous fungus, Fusarium graminearum, The techniques necessary successfully carry out these processes are presented.
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.
In this video-article we present a step-by-step demonstration on how to collect and cryopreserve hamster oocytes with high post-thaw survival rates. The same procedure can also be applied to successfully freeze and thaw mouse embryos at different stages of preimplantation development.
Quantitation and Analysis of the Formation of HO-Endonuclease Stimulated Chromosomal Translocations by Single-Strand Annealing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae
1Irell & Manella Graduate School of Biological Sciences, 2Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center and Beckman Research Institute, 3Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Southern California, Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center
The HO-stimulated translocation assay monitors single-strand annealing following the creation of DNA double-strand breaks at multiple loci in diploid Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This mechanism may model genome rearrangements in somatic cells of higher eukaryotes following exposure to high doses of ionizing radiation.
Mapping Bacterial Functional Networks and Pathways in Escherichia Coli using Synthetic Genetic Arrays
1Department of Molecular Genetics, University of Toronto, 2Banting and Best Department of Medical Research, Donnelly Centre, University of Toronto, 3Department of Biochemistry, Research and Innovation Centre, University of Regina
Systematic, large-scale synthetic genetic (gene-gene or epistasis) interaction screens can be used to explore genetic redundancy and pathway cross-talk. Here, we describe a high-throughput quantitative synthetic genetic array screening technology, termed eSGA that we developed for elucidating epistatic relationships and exploring genetic interaction networks in Escherichia coli.
Establish a chronic bacterial infected mouse model with persistent Salmonella typhimurium colonization in intestine for 27 weeks.
Stable Isotopic Profiling of Intermediary Metabolic Flux in Developing and Adult Stage Caenorhabditis elegans
Stable isotopic profiling by gas chromatography mass spectrometric analysis of intermediary metabolic flux is described in the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans. Methods are detailed for assessing isotopic enrichment in carbon dioxide, organic acids, and amino acids following isotope exposure either during development on agar plates or during adulthood in liquid culture.
Endothelin-1 Induced Middle Cerebral Artery Occlusion Model for Ischemic Stroke with Laser Doppler Flowmetry Guidance in Rat
1Department of Neurosurgery, University of Florida, 2Department of Anatomical Sciences, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran, 3Department of Physiology and Functional Genomics, University of Florida, 4Department of Neurology, University of Florida
Several animal models of cerebral ischemia have been developed to simulate the human condition of stroke. This protocol describes the endothelin-1 (ET-1) induced middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model for ischemic stroke in rats. In addition, important considerations, advantages, and shortcomings of this model are discussed.
We describe a sensitized method to identify postembryonic regulators of protein expression and localization in C. elegans using an RNAi-based genomic screen and an integrated transgene that expresses a functional, fluorescently tagged protein.
1Department of Microbiology, New York University School of Medicine, 2Molecular Neurobiology Program, Skirball Institute for Biomolecular Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, 3Department of Otolaryngology, New York University School of Medicine, 4Department of Cell Biology, New York University School of Medicine, 5Department of Physiology and Neuroscience, New York University School of Medicine, 6Department of Psychiatry, New York University School of Medicine, 7Center for Neural Science, New York University School of Medicine
The protocol describes an efficient and reproducible model system to study herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) latency and reactivation. The assay employs homogenous sympathetic neuron cultures and allows for the molecular dissection of virus-neuron interactions using a variety of tools including RNA interference and expression of recombinant proteins.