Automated three-dimensional reconstruction of the Caenorhabditis elegans germline

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Abstract

The Caenorhabditis elegans germline is widely used as a model to study stem cell development, chromosome dynamics and apoptosis. Major readouts of germline phenotypes such as cell counting and protein expression profiling are routinely analyzed manually and in a two-dimensional manner. The major disadvantages of the existing approaches are 1) they are time-consuming and laborious and 2) there is an inability to study the effects of genetic mutations in three dimensions. Here, we demonstrate a rapid, automated method for analyzing the three-dimensional distribution of proteins, germline nuclei and cytoskeletal structures in the C. elegans germline. Using this method, we have revealed previously unappreciated germline organization and cytoskeletal structures that will have a major impact on the characterization of germline phenotypes. To conclude, our new method dramatically enhances the efficiency and resolution of C. elegans germline analysis and may be applied to other cellular structures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-228
Number of pages7
JournalDevelopmental Biology
Volume432
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2017

Keywords

  • Actin cytoskeleton
  • Automated analysis
  • Caenorhabditis elegans
  • Germline

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