An active particle-based tracking framework for 2D and 3D time-lapse microscopy images

Centre for Image Processing and Analysis, Dublin City University, Glasnevin, Dublin 9, Ireland.
Conference proceedings: ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference 08/2011; 2011:6613-8. DOI: 10.1109/IEMBS.2011.6091631
Source: PubMed


The process required to track cellular structures is a key task in the study of cell migration. This allows the accurate estimation of motility indicators that help in the understanding of mechanisms behind various biological processes. This paper reports a particle-based fully automatic tracking framework that is able to quantify the motility of living cells in time-lapse images. Contrary to the standard tracking methods based on predefined motion models, in this paper we reformulate the tracking mechanism as a data driven optimization process to remove its reliance on a priory motion models. The proposed method has been evaluated using 2D and 3D deconvolved epifluorescent in-vivo image sequences that describe the development of the quail embryo.

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    ABSTRACT: Endocardial cells play a critical role in cardiac development and function, forming the innermost layer of the early (tubular) heart, separated from the myocardium by extracellular matrix (ECM). However, knowledge is limited regarding the interactions of cardiac progenitors and surrounding ECM during dramatic tissue rearrangements and concomitant cellular repositioning events that underlie endocardial morphogenesis. By analyzing the movements of immunolabeled ECM components (fibronectin, fibrillin-2) and TIE1 positive endocardial progenitors in time-lapse recordings of quail embryonic development, we demonstrate that the transformation of the primary heart field within the anterior lateral plate mesoderm (LPM) into a tubular heart involves the precise co-movement of primordial endocardial cells with the surrounding ECM. Thus, the ECM of the tubular heart contains filaments that were associated with the anterior LPM at earlier developmental stages. Moreover, endocardial cells exhibit surprisingly little directed active motility, that is, sustained directed movements relative to the surrounding ECM microenvironment. These findings point to the importance of large-scale tissue movements that convect cells to the appropriate positions during cardiac organogenesis.
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