Articles by Matthew C. Spink in JoVE
Volume Segmentation and Analysis of Biological Materials Using SuRVoS (Super-region Volume Segmentation) Workbench Michele C. Darrow1, Imanol Luengo1,2, Mark Basham1, Matthew C. Spink1, Sarah Irvine1, Andrew P. French2, Alun W. Ashton1, Elizabeth M.H. Duke1 1Science Division, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Diamond Light Source, 2School of Computer Science, University of Nottingham Segmentation of three-dimensional data from many imaging techniques is a major bottleneck in analysis of complex biological systems. Here, we describe the use of SuRVoS Workbench to semi-automatically segment volumetric data at various length-scales using example datasets from cryo-electron tomography, cryo soft X-ray tomography, and phase contrast X-ray tomography techniques.
Other articles by Matthew C. Spink on PubMed
Imaging Yeast NPCs: from Classical Electron Microscopy to Immuno-SEM Methods in Cell Biology. 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24857725 Electron microscopy (EM) has been used extensively for the study of nuclear transport as well as the structure of the nuclear pore complex (NPC) and nuclear envelope. However, there are specific challenges faced when carrying out EM in one of the main model organisms used: the yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. These are due to the presence of a cell wall, vacuoles, and a densely packed cytoplasm which, for transmission EM (TEM), make fixation, embedding, and imaging difficult. These also present problems for scanning EM (SEM) because cell wall removal and isolation of nuclei can easily damage the relatively fragile NPCs. We present some of the protocols we use to prepare samples for TEM and SEM to provide information about yeast NPC ultrastructure and the location of nucleoporins and transport factors by immunogold labeling within that ultrastructure.
SuRVoS: Super-Region Volume Segmentation Workbench Journal of Structural Biology. Apr, 2017 | Pubmed ID: 28246039 Segmentation of biological volumes is a crucial step needed to fully analyse their scientific content. Not having access to convenient tools with which to segment or annotate the data means many biological volumes remain under-utilised. Automatic segmentation of biological volumes is still a very challenging research field, and current methods usually require a large amount of manually-produced training data to deliver a high-quality segmentation. However, the complex appearance of cellular features and the high variance from one sample to another, along with the time-consuming work of manually labelling complete volumes, makes the required training data very scarce or non-existent. Thus, fully automatic approaches are often infeasible for many practical applications. With the aim of unifying the segmentation power of automatic approaches with the user expertise and ability to manually annotate biological samples, we present a new workbench named SuRVoS (Super-Region Volume Segmentation). Within this software, a volume to be segmented is first partitioned into hierarchical segmentation layers (named Super-Regions) and is then interactively segmented with the user's knowledge input in the form of training annotations. SuRVoS first learns from and then extends user inputs to the rest of the volume, while using Super-Regions for quicker and easier segmentation than when using a voxel grid. These benefits are especially noticeable on noisy, low-dose, biological datasets.
Parasitophorous Vacuole Poration Precedes Its Rupture and Rapid Host Erythrocyte Cytoskeleton Collapse in Plasmodium Falciparum Egress Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Mar, 2017 | Pubmed ID: 28292906 In the asexual blood stages of malarial infection, merozoites invade erythrocytes and replicate within a parasitophorous vacuole to form daughter cells that eventually exit (egress) by sequential rupture of the vacuole and erythrocyte membranes. The current model is that PKG, a malarial cGMP-dependent protein kinase, triggers egress, activating malarial proteases and other effectors. Using selective inhibitors of either PKG or cysteine proteases to separately inhibit the sequential steps in membrane perforation, combined with video microscopy, electron tomography, electron energy loss spectroscopy, and soft X-ray tomography of mature intracellular Plasmodium falciparum parasites, we resolve intermediate steps in egress. We show that the parasitophorous vacuole membrane (PVM) is permeabilized 10-30 min before its PKG-triggered breakdown into multilayered vesicles. Just before PVM breakdown, the host red cell undergoes an abrupt, dramatic shape change due to the sudden breakdown of the erythrocyte cytoskeleton, before permeabilization and eventual rupture of the erythrocyte membrane to release the parasites. In contrast to the previous view of PKG-triggered initiation of egress and a gradual dismantling of the host erythrocyte cytoskeleton over the course of schizont development, our findings identify an initial step in egress and show that host cell cytoskeleton breakdown is restricted to a narrow time window within the final stages of egress.