[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Retinal stem cells (RSCs) exist as rare pigmented ciliary epithelial cells in adult mammalian eyes. We hypothesized that RSCs are at the top of the retinal cell lineage. Thus, genes expressed early in embryonic development to establish the retinal field in forebrain neuroectoderm may play important roles in RSCs. Pax6, a paired domain and homeodomain-containing transcription factor, is one of the earliest genes expressed in the eye field and is considered a master control gene for retinal and eye development. Here, we demonstrate that Pax6 is enriched in RSCs. Inactivation of Pax6 in vivo results in loss of competent RSCs as assayed by the failure to form clonal RSC spheres from the optic vesicles of conventional Pax6 knockout embryos and from the ciliary epithelial cells of adult Pax6 conditional knockout mice. In vitro clonal inactivation of Pax6 in adult RSCs results in a serious proliferation defect, suggesting that Pax6 is required for the proliferation and expansion of RSCs.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There is a need for methods to (1) track cells continuously to generate lineage trees; (2) culture cells in in vivo-like microenvironments; and (3) measure many biological parameters simultaneously and noninvasively. Herein, we present a novel imaging culture chamber that facilitates "lineage informatics," a lineage-centric approach to cytomics.
We cultured cells in a confined monolayer using a novel "gap chamber" that produces images with confocal-like qualities using standard DIC microscopy. Lineage and other cytometric data were semiautomatically extracted from image sets of neural stem and progenitor cells and analyzed using lineage informatics.
Cells imaged in the chamber every 3 min could be tracked for at least 6 generations allowing for the construction of extensive lineage trees with multiparameter data sets at hundreds of time points for each cell. The lineage informatics approach reveals relationships between lineage, phenotype, and microenvironment. Mass transfer characteristics and 3D geometry make the chamber more in vivo-like than traditional culture systems.
The gap chamber allows cells to be cultured, imaged, and tracked in true monolayers permitting detailed informatics analysis of cell lineage, phenotype, and fate determinants. The chamber is biomimetic and straightforward to build and use, and should find many applications in long-term cell imaging.
Cytometry Part A 01/2007; 69(12):1202-11. · 3.71 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Embryonic cortical neural stem cells apparently have a transient existence, as they do not persist in the adult cortex. We sought to determine the fate of embryonic cortical stem cells by following Emx1(IREScre); LacZ/EGFP double-transgenic murine cells from midgestation into adulthood. Lineage tracing in combination with direct cell labeling and time-lapse video microscopy demonstrated that Emx1-lineage embryonic cortical stem cells migrate ventrally into the striatal germinal zone (GZ) perinatally and intermingle with striatal stem cells. Upon integration into the striatal GZ, cortical stem cells down-regulate Emx1 and up-regulate Dlx2, which is a homeobox gene characteristic of the developing striatum and striatal neural stem cells. This demonstrates the existence of a novel dorsal-to-ventral migration of neural stem cells in the perinatal forebrain.
The Journal of Cell Biology 11/2006; 175(1):159-68. · 10.82 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The immortal strand hypothesis proposes that asymmetrically dividing stem cells (SCs) selectively segregate chromosomes that bear the oldest DNA templates. We investigated cosegregation in neural stem cells (NSCs). After exposure to the thymidine analogue 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine (BrdU), which labels newly synthesized DNA, a subset of neural precursor cells were shown to retain BrdU signal. It was confirmed that some BrdU-retaining cells divided actively, and that these cells exhibited some characteristics of SCs. This asymmetric partitioning of DNA then was demonstrated during mitosis, and these results were further supported by real time imaging of SC clones, in which older and newly synthesized DNA templates were distributed asymmetrically after DNA synthesis. We demonstrate that NSCs are unique among precursor cells in the uneven partitioning of genetic material during cell divisions.
The Journal of Cell Biology 09/2005; 170(5):721-32. · 10.82 Impact Factor