Here, we describe a non-invasive two-photon (2P) microscopy approach to study leukocyte homing in the mouse footpad. We discuss the technical aspects of our tissue imaging preparation and walk the reader through a typical experiment from initial set up to execution and data collection.
Multi-photon Imaging of Tumor Cell Invasion in an Orthotopic Mouse Model of Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma
1Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, Program in Cancer Cell Biology, Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, West Virginia University, 2Sensory Neuroscience Research Center, West Virginia University, 3Departments of Otolaryngology and Physiology, Center for Neuroscience, West Virginia University
A comprehensive overview of the techniques involved in generating a mouse model of oral cancer and quantitative monitoring of tumor invasion within the tongue through multi-photon microscopy of labeled cells is presented. This system can serve as a useful platform for the molecular assessment and drug efficacy of anti-invasive compounds.
We present a method of creating a thinned-skull cortical window (TSCW) in a mouse model for in vivo OCT imaging of the cerebral cortex.
Transplantation into the Anterior Chamber of the Eye for Longitudinal, Non-invasive In vivo Imaging with Single-cell Resolution in Real-time
1Diabetes Research Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, 2Department of Surgery, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, 3Department of Medicine, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, 4Department of Physiology & Biophysics, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, 5The Rolf Luft Research Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology, Karolinska Institutet
A new approach combining intraocular transplantation and confocal microscopy enables longitudinal, non-invasive real-time imaging with single-cell resolution within grafted tissues in vivo. We demonstrate how to transplant pancreatic islets into the anterior chamber of the mouse eye.
Two-photon imaging has uncovered lymphocyte motility and cellular interactions within the lymph node under basal conditions and durring an immune response 1. Here, we demonstrate adoptive transfer of T cells, isolation of lymph nodes, and imaging motility of CD4+ T cells in the explanted lymph node.
Multiphoton microscopy allows control of low energy photons with deep optical penetration and reduced phototoxicity. We describe the use of this technology for live cell labeling in zebrafish embryos. This protocol can be readily adapted for photo-induction of various light-responsive molecules.
1Unit on Neural Circuits and Adaptive Behaviors, Genes Cognition and Psychosis Program, National Institute of Mental Health, 2Department of Neuroscience, Brown University - National Institutes of Health Graduate Partnership Program, 3Section on Synaptic Pharmacology, Laboratory for Integrative Neuroscience, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 4Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme, Champalimaud Center for the Unknown
Experience-dependent molecular changes in neurons are essential for the brain's ability to adapt in response to behavioral challenges. An in vivo two-photon imaging method is described here that allows the tracking of such molecular changes in individual cortical neurons through genetically encoded reporters.
Cortical blood flow dynamics can be studied in vivo by imaging fluorescent dextran dyes injected into the tail vein of rodents with 2-photon microscopy. This video shows how to image blood flow dynamics in neocortex of mice through a glass-covered cranial window preparation.
This video and protocol demonstrate how to implant a glass-covered cranial window in rodents. These preparations can be used for chronic in vivo two-photon imaging of the neocortex over time scales of months. It may also be used for other types of imaging, including optical intrinsic signal imaging.
In this video and supplemental material, we show a protocol for chronic in vivo imaging of the intact brain using a thinned-skull preparation.
To understand network dynamics of microcircuits in the neocortex, it is essential to simultaneously record the activity of a large number of neurons . In-vivo two-photon calcium imaging is the only method that allows one to record the activity of a dense neuronal population with single-cell resolution .
A minimally invasive protocol to stabilize the mouse spinal column and perform repetitive in vivo spinal cord imaging using two-photon microscopy is described. This method combines a spinal stabilization device and an anesthetic regimen to minimize respiratory-induced movements and produce raw imaging data that require no alignment or other post-processing.
Targeted Labeling of Neurons in a Specific Functional Micro-domain of the Neocortex by Combining Intrinsic Signal and Two-photon Imaging
A method is described for labeling neurons with fluorescent dyes in predetermined functional micro-domains of the neocortex. First, intrinsic signal optical imaging is used to obtain a functional map. Then two-photon microscopy is used to label and image neurons within a micro-domain of the map.
Quantifying Glomerular Permeability of Fluorescent Macromolecules Using 2-Photon Microscopy in Munich Wistar Rats
A technique utilizing high resolution intavital 2-photon microscopy to directly visualize and quantify gloemrular filtration in surface glomeruli. This method allows for direct determination of permeability characteristics of macromolecules in both normal and diseased states.
Here we demonstrate a method for inducing and recording the progress of a delayed type-hypersensitivity (DTH) reaction in the rat ear. This is followed by a demonstration of the preparation of rat ear tissue for two-photon imaging of the effector / memory T cell response.
1Department of Physics, University of California, San Diego, 2Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics, Pennsylvania State University, 3Department of Neurosurgery, Pennsylvania State University, 4Section of Neurobiology, University of California, San Diego
We present a method to form an imaging window in the mouse skull that spans millimeters and is stable for months without inflammation of the brain. This method is well suited for longitudinal studies of blood flow, cellular dynamics, and cell/vascular structure using two-photon microscopy.
We describe an established technique to measure and analyze odor-evoked calcium responses in the antennal lobe of living Drosophila melanogaster.
1Institut Cochin, Université Paris Descartes, CNRS (UMR 8104), 2Inserm, U1016, Paris, France
This protocol describes a method to image fluorescent T cells introduced into lymph node slices. The technique permits real-time analyses of T cell migration with traditional widefield fluorescence or confocal microscopes.
We present a protocol for freezing and cryosectioning yeast communities to observe internal patterns of fluorescent cells. The method relies on methanol-fixing and OCT-embedding to preserve the spatial distribution of cells without inactivating fluorescent proteins within a community.
1Temple University, Shriners Hospitals Pediatric Research Center and Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, 2Medical Research Service, Department of Veterans Affairs Hospital, 3Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, Drexel University College of Medicine, 4Shriners Hospitals Pediatric Research Center and Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Temple University School of Medicine
An in vivo imaging protocol to monitor primary sensory axons following dorsal root crush is described. The procedures utilize wide-field fluorescence microscopy and thy1-YFP transgenic mice, and permit repeated imaging of axon regeneration over 4 cm in the PNS and axon interactions with the interface of the CNS.
This article depicts the recording of individual cells from fluorescently tagged neuronal populations in the intact mouse retina. By using two-photon infrared excitation transgenetically labeled cells were targeted for patch-clamp recording to study their light responses, receptive field properties, and morphology.
Direct Observation of Phagocytosis and NET-formation by Neutrophils in Infected Lungs using 2-photon Microscopy
We show, how to use 2-photon microscopy for the observation of the dynamics of neutrophil granulocytes in infected lungs while they phagocytose pathogens or produce neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs).
We present principles of oxygen measurements by phosphorescence quenching and review design of porphyrin-based dendritic nanosensors for oxygen imaging in biological systems.
We present step-by-step instructions for the generation of neonatal chimeras as well as the dissection and preparation of the thymus for ex vivo imaging by 2-Photon Microscopy.
1Department of Anatomy and Structural Biology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine - Yeshiva University, 2Gruss Lipper Biophotonics Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine - Yeshiva University, 3Hubrecht Institute-KNAW and University Medical Center Utrecht
Intravital photoswitching and tracking of Dendra2-labeled tumor cells through the Mammary Imaging Window is a technique which allows us to image the metastatic behavior of tumor cells in chosen tumor microenvironments over a timescale of days.
We present a protocol that permits to view and to quantitatively asses the morphology of the dendritic tree of individual Purkinje cells grown in organotypic cerebellar slice cultures. This protocol is intended to promote studies on the mechanisms of Purkinje cell dendritic development.
A technique for performing intravital microscopy of the inguinal lymph node (LN) is outlined. Such technique allows for real-time, in vivo study of the lymph node microvasculature and structure both during homeostasis and infection. This technique can be adapted to cell trafficking studies and to other lymph node sites.
In vivo Quantification of G Protein Coupled Receptor Interactions using Spectrally Resolved Two-photon Microscopy
By employing a spectrally resolved two-photon microscopy imaging system, pixel-level maps of Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) efficiencies are obtained for cells expressing membrane receptors hypothesized to form homo-oligomeric complexes. From the FRET efficiency maps, we are able to estimate stoichiometric information about the oligomer complex under study.
A Thin-skull Window Technique for Chronic Two-photon In vivo Imaging of Murine Microglia in Models of Neuroinflammation
We describe a method for repeatedly visualizing murine microglia and circulating monocytes in vivo over hours, days or weeks using transcranial two-photon microscopy. We demonstrate how to prepare a thinned-skull window that allows intermittent observation of quiescent microglia that can be activated by adjacent stereotactic injection of the HIV-1 regulatory protein Tat.
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.
A method is described for the preparation of single living photoreceptor cells from different vertebrate species for fluorescence imaging. The method can be used to image the fluorescence of endogenous fluorophores, such as NADH or vitamin A, or that of exogenously added fluorescent dyes sensitive to Ca2+ or other factors.
1Department of poverty related diseases, Barcelona Centre for International Health Research, 2Confocal Microscopy Unit, University of Barcelona- Scientific and Technological Centers, 3Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avançats (ICREA)
We show the method for performing intravital microscopy of the spleen using GFP transgenic malaria parasites and the quantification of parasite mobility and blood flow within this organ.
Spontaneous activity of developing neuronal networks can be measured using AM-ester forms of calcium-sensitive indicator dyes. Changes in intracellular calcium, indicating neuronal activation, are detected as transient changes in indicator fluorescence with one- or two-photon imaging. This protocol can be adapted for a range of developmentally-dependent neuronal networks in vitro.
Recent advances in 2-photon microscopy have enabled real-time in situ imaging of live tissues in animal models, thereby enhancing our ability to investigate cellular behavior in both physiologic and pathologic conditions. Here, we outline the preparations required to perform intravital imaging of the mouse popliteal lymph node.
This article describes a technique for the visualization of the early events of embryogenesis in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.
This protocol delineates a way to label and trace the fate of small groups of cells zebrafish embryos using UV-uncaging of caged fluorescein, followed by whole mount immunolabeling to amplify the signal from the uncaged fluorescein.
We have developed novel laboratory tools and protocols for intravital imaging acquisition of the thymus. Our technique should help in the identification of “niches” within the thymus where T cell development occurs.
In this article we will describe the procedure for measuring diffusion coefficients using multi-photon fluorescence recovery after photobleaching. We will begin by aligning the laser along the optical path to the sample and determining the proper experimental parameters, then continue generating and finally fitting fluorescence recovery curves.
1Optics Division, Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, 2Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of Pennsylvania, 3Neuroprotection Research Laboratory, Departments of Radiology and Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, 4Departments of Neurosciences and Radiology, University of California
We present an experimental procedure for measuring the partial pressure of oxygen (pO2) in cerebral vasculature based on oxygen-dependent quenching of phosphorescence. Animal preparation and imaging procedures were outlined for both large field of view CCD-based imaging of pO2 in rats and 2-photon excitation based imaging of pO2 in mice.
We describe a method for preparing DNA coated gold bullets and demonstrate the use of such bullets to biolistically transfect neurons in cultured hippocampal slices.
By combining a polished and reinforced thin-skull (PoRTS) cranial window and glioblastoma (GBM) cell injection, we can observe glioma initiation and growth from injected GBM cells in the brain of a live mouse longitudinally.
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.
Multicolor Time-lapse Imaging of Transgenic Zebrafish: Visualizing Retinal Stem Cells Activated by Targeted Neuronal Cell Ablation
In this video, techniques for multicolor confocal time-lapse imaging and targeted cell ablation are provided. Time-lapse imaging is used to monitor the behavior of multiple cell types of interest in vivo. Targeted cell ablation facilitates the study neural circuit function and cell-specific neuronal regeneration paradigms.
Differential Imaging of Biological Structures with Doubly-resonant Coherent Anti-stokes Raman Scattering (CARS)
A combination of three single wavelength short-pulsed lasers is used to generate coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) and doubly-resonant CARS (DR-CARS). The difference between these signals provides enhanced sensitivity for otherwise difficult to detect coherent Raman signals, enabling imaging of weak Raman scatterers.
Here we describe a method for mounting zebrafish embryos for long-term imaging, two-photon imaging and tissue-damage techniques, and time-lapse confocal imaging.
1Department of Molecular & Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine (BCM), 2Precisionary Instruments Inc., 3Departments of Molecular & Human Genetics and Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine (BCM), 4Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute, Texas Children's Hospital
Here we describe a rapid and simple method to image fluorescently labeled cells in semi-thick brain slices. By fixing, slicing, and optically clearing brain tissue we describe how standard epifluorescent or confocal imaging can be used to visualize individual cells and neuronal networks within intact nervous tissue.
This article describes an optimized sequence of events for multimodal imaging of cellular grafts in rodent brain using: (i) in vivo bioluminescence and magnetic resonance imaging, and (ii) post mortem histological analysis. Combining these imaging modalities on a single animal allows cellular graft evaluation with high resolution, sensitivity and specificity.
A method is described to photoactivate single cells containing a caged fluorescent protein using two-photon absorption from a Ti:Sapphire femtosecond laser oscillator. To fate map the photoactivated cell, immunohistochemistry is used. This technique can be applied to any cell type.
1Center for Systems Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital, 2Institute for Biological and Medical Imaging (IBMI), Technical University of Munich and Helmholtz Center Munich, 3Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School and Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Mesoscopic fluorescence tomography operates beyond the penetration limits of tissue-sectioning fluorescence microscopy. The technique is based on multi-projection illumination and a photon transport description. We demonstrate in-vivo whole-body 3D visualization of the morphogenesis of GFP-expressing wing imaginal discs in Drosophila melanogaster.