In recent years, live imaging has been adopted to study stem cells in their native environment at cellular resolution. In the skeletal muscle field, this has led to visualising the initial events of muscle repair in mouse, and the entire regenerative response in zebrafish. Here, we review recent discoveries in this field obtained from live imaging studies. Tracking of tissue resident stem cells, the satellite cells, following injury has captured the morphogenetic dynamics of stem/progenitor cells as they facilitate repair. Asymmetric satellite cell division generated a clonogenic progenitor pool, providing in vivo validation for this mechanism. Furthermore, there is an emerging role of stem/progenitor cell guidance at the injury site by cellular protrusions. This review concludes that live imaging is a critical tool for discovering the distinct processes that occur during regeneration, emphasising the importance of imaging in diverse animal models to capture the entire scope of stem cell functions. Also see the Video Abstract. Link to: https://youtube/tgUHSBD1N0g.
- in vivo live time-lapse imaging
- intravital imaging
- muscle stem cells
- satellite cells
- skeletal muscle regeneration