Visualizing macrophage extracellular traps using confocal microscopy

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A primary method used to define the presence of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) is confocal microscopy. We have modified established confocal microscopy methods to visualize macrophage extracellular traps (METs). These extracellular traps are defined by the presence of extracellular chromatin with co-expression of other components such as granule proteases, citrullinated histones, and peptidyl arginase deiminase (PAD). The expression of METs is generally measured after exposure to a stimulus and compared to un-stimulated samples. Samples are also included for background and isotype control. Cells are analyzed using well-defined image analysis software. Confocal microscopy may be used to define the presence of METs both in vitro and in vivo in lung tissue.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere56459
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number128
Publication statusPublished - 19 Oct 2017


  • Confocal microscopy
  • Extracellular traps
  • Human
  • Immunology
  • Issue 128
  • Lung
  • Macrophage
  • Murine

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