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Xavier Pichon, Mounia Lagha, Florian Mueller, Edouard Bertrand
The spatiotemporal regulation of gene expression is key to many biological processes. Recent imaging approaches opened exciting perspectives for understanding the intricate mechanisms regulating RNA metabolism, from synthesis to decay. Imaging techniques allow their observation at high spatial and temporal resolution, while keeping cellular morphology and micro-environment intact. Here, we focus on approaches for imaging single RNA molecules in cells, tissues, and embryos. In fixed cells, the rapid development of smFISH multiplexing opens the way to large-scale single-molecule studies, while in live cells, gene expression can be observed in real time in its native context...
August 2, 2018: Molecular Cell
Samuel E Taylor, Ruth D Taylor, Jack Price, Laura C Andreae
BACKGROUND: Deletions and mutations in the SHANK3 gene are strongly associated with autism spectrum disorder and underlie the autism-associated disorder Phelan-McDermid syndrome. SHANK3 is a scaffolding protein found at the post-synaptic membrane of excitatory neurons. METHODS: Single-molecule fluorescence in-situ hybridization (smFISH) allows the visualization of single mRNA transcripts in vitro. Here we perform and quantify smFISH in human inducible pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC)-derived cortical neurons, targeting the SHANK3 transcript...
July 31, 2018: Stem Cell Research & Therapy
Jingxun Chen, David McSwiggen, Elçin Ünal
Single molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH) is a powerful technique to study gene expression in single cells due to its ability to detect and count individual RNA molecules. Complementary to deep sequencing-based methods, smFISH provides information about the cell-to-cell variation in transcript abundance and the subcellular localization of a given RNA. Recently, we have used smFISH to study the expression of the gene NDC80 during meiosis in budding yeast, in which two transcript isoforms exist and the short transcript isoform has its entire sequence shared with the long isoform...
May 25, 2018: Journal of Visualized Experiments: JoVE
Aouefa Amoussouvi, Lotte Teufel, Matthias Reis, Martin Seeger, Julia Katharina Schlichting, Gabriele Schreiber, Andreas Herrmann, Edda Klipp
Gene expression is a stochastic process and its appropriate regulation is critical for cell cycle progression. Cellular stress response necessitates expression reprogramming and cell cycle arrest. While previous studies are mostly based on bulk experiments influenced by synchronization effects or lack temporal distribution, time-resolved methods on single cells are needed to understand eukaryotic cell cycle in context of noisy gene expression and external perturbations. Using smFISH, microscopy and morphological markers, we monitored mRNA abundances over cell cycle phases and calculated transcriptional noise for SIC1 , CLN2 , and CLB5 , the main G1/S transition regulators in budding yeast...
2018: NPJ Systems Biology and Applications
Christoph G Engert, Rita Droste, Alexander van Oudenaarden, H Robert Horvitz
To better understand the tissue-specific regulation of chromatin state in cell-fate determination and animal development, we defined the tissue-specific expression of all 36 C. elegans presumptive lysine methyltransferase (KMT) genes using single-molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH). Most KMTs were expressed in only one or two tissues. The germline was the tissue with the broadest KMT expression. We found that the germline-expressed C. elegans protein SET-17, which has a SET domain similar to that of the PRDM9 and PRDM7 SET-domain proteins, promotes fertility by regulating gene expression in primary spermatocytes...
April 2018: PLoS Genetics
Benjamin R King, Aubin Samacoits, Philip L Eisenhauer, Christopher M Ziegler, Emily A Bruce, Daniel Zenklusen, Christophe Zimmer, Florian Mueller, Jason Botten
Lymphocytic choriomeningitis mammarenavirus (LCMV) is an enveloped, negative-strand RNA virus that causes serious disease in humans but establishes an asymptomatic, lifelong infection in reservoir rodents. Different models have been proposed to describe how arenaviruses regulate the replication and transcription of their bisegmented, single-stranded RNA genomes, particularly during persistent infection. However, these models were based largely on viral RNA profiling data derived from entire populations of cells...
June 15, 2018: Journal of Virology
Guiping Wang, Jeffrey R Moffitt, Xiaowei Zhuang
As an image-based single-cell transcriptomics approach, multiplexed error-robust fluorescence in situ hybridization (MERFISH) allows hundreds to thousands of RNA species to be identified, counted and localized in individual cells while preserving the native spatial context of RNAs. In MERFISH, RNAs are identified via a combinatorial labeling approach that encodes RNA species with error-robust barcodes followed by sequential rounds of single-molecule FISH (smFISH) to read out these barcodes. The accuracy of RNA identification relies on spatially separated signals from individual RNA molecules, which limits the density of RNAs that can be measured and makes the multiplexed imaging of a large number of high-abundance RNAs challenging...
March 19, 2018: Scientific Reports
Seongjin Park, Magda Bujnowska, Eric L McLean, Jingyi Fei
We present a method for the quantification of small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) in bacteria, by combining single-molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH), super-resolved single-fluorophore microscopy, and clustering analysis. Compared to smFISH imaging with diffraction-limited fluorescence microscopy, our method provides better quantification for short and abundant RNA (such as sRNAs) in a small volume of bacterial cells. Our method can also be directly used for the quantification of messenger RNAs (mRNAs)...
2018: Methods in Molecular Biology
Kyung Won Kim, Ngang Heok Tang, Matthew G Andrusiak, Zilu Wu, Andrew D Chisholm, Yishi Jin
The PIWI-interacting RNA (piRNA) pathway has long been thought to function solely in the germline, but evidence for its functions in somatic cells is emerging. Here we report an unexpected role for the piRNA pathway in Caenorhabditis elegans sensory axon regeneration after injury. Loss of function in a subset of components of the piRNA pathway results in enhanced axon regrowth. Two essential piRNA factors, PRDE-1 and PRG-1/PIWI, inhibit axon regeneration in a gonad-independent and cell-autonomous manner. By smFISH analysis we find that prde-1 transcripts are present in neurons, as well as germ cells...
February 7, 2018: Neuron
Rinat Arbel-Goren, Yonatan Shapira, Joel Stavans
A method is described for labeling individual messenger RNA (mRNA) transcripts in fixed bacteria for use in single-molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH) experiments in E. coli. smFISH allows the measurement of cell-to-cell variability in mRNA copy number of genes of interest, as well as the subcellular location of the transcripts. The main steps involved are fixation of the bacterial cell culture, permeabilization of cell membranes, and hybridization of the target transcripts with sets of commercially available short fluorescently-labeled oligonucleotide probes...
December 21, 2017: Journal of Visualized Experiments: JoVE
Tatjana Trcek, Samir Rahman, Daniel Zenklusen
Cellular mRNA levels are determined by the rates of mRNA synthesis and mRNA decay. Typically, mRNA degradation kinetics are measured on a population of cells that are either chemically treated or genetically engineered to inhibit transcription. However, these manipulations can affect the mRNA decay process itself by inhibiting regulatory mechanisms that govern mRNA degradation, especially if they occur on short time-scales. Recently, single molecule fluorescent in situ hybridization (smFISH) approaches have been implemented to quantify mRNA decay rates in single, unperturbed cells...
2018: Methods in Molecular Biology
Evelina Tutucci, Maria Vera, Jeetayu Biswas, Jennifer Garcia, Roy Parker, Robert H Singer
The MS2-MCP system enables researchers to image multiple steps of the mRNA life cycle with high temporal and spatial resolution. However, for short-lived mRNAs, the tight binding of the MS2 coat protein (MCP) to the MS2 binding sites (MBS) protects the RNA from being efficiently degraded, and this confounds the study of mRNA regulation. Here, we describe a reporter system (MBSV6) with reduced affinity for the MCP, which allows mRNA degradation while preserving single-molecule detection determined by single-molecule FISH (smFISH) or live imaging...
January 2018: Nature Methods
Chee-Huat Linus Eng, Sheel Shah, Julian Thomassie, Long Cai
Single-molecule FISH (smFISH) has been the gold standard for quantifying individual transcript abundances. Here, we scale up multiplexed smFISH to the transcriptome level and profile 10,212 different mRNAs from mouse fibroblast and embryonic stem cells. This method, called RNA sequential probing of targets (SPOTs), provides an accurate, flexible, and low-cost alternative to sequencing for profiling transcriptomes.
December 2017: Nature Methods
Joshua S Titlow, Lu Yang, Richard M Parton, Ana Palanca, Ilan Davis
The lack of an effective, simple, and highly sensitive protocol for fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction (NMJ) has hampered the study of mRNA biology. Here, we describe our modified single molecule FISH (smFISH) methods that work well in whole mount Drosophila NMJ preparations to quantify primary transcription and count individual cytoplasmic mRNA molecules in specimens while maintaining ultrastructural preservation. The smFISH method is suitable for high-throughput sample processing and 3D image acquisition using any conventional microscopy imaging modality and is compatible with the use of antibody colabeling and transgenic fluorescent protein tags in axons, glia, synapses, and muscle cells...
2018: Methods in Molecular Biology
L Carine Stapel, Coleman Broaddus, Nadine L Vastenhouw
Single molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH) is a method to visualize single mRNA molecules. When combined with cellular and nuclear segmentation, transcripts can be assigned to different cellular compartments resulting in quantitative information on transcript levels at subcellular resolution. The use of smFISH in zebrafish has been limited by the lack of protocols and an automated image analysis pipeline for samples of multicellular organisms. Here we present a protocol for smFISH on zebrafish cryosections...
2018: Methods in Molecular Biology
Shawn C Little, Thomas Gregor
Single molecule fluorescent in situ hybridization (smFISH) enables quantitative measurements of gene expression and mRNA localization. The technique is increasingly popular for analysis of cultured cells but is not widely applied to intact organisms. Here, we describe a method for labeling and detection of single mRNA molecules in whole embryos of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. This method permits measurements of gene expression in absolute units, enabling new studies of transcriptional mechanisms underlying precision and reproducibility in cell specification...
2018: Methods in Molecular Biology
Anthony Khong, Tyler Matheny, Saumya Jain, Sarah F Mitchell, Joshua R Wheeler, Roy Parker
Stress granules are mRNA-protein assemblies formed from nontranslating mRNAs. Stress granules are important in the stress response and may contribute to some degenerative diseases. Here, we describe the stress granule transcriptome of yeast and mammalian cells through RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis of purified stress granule cores and single-molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH) validation. While essentially every mRNA, and some noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), can be targeted to stress granules, the targeting efficiency varies from <1% to >95%...
November 16, 2017: Molecular Cell
Yi Cui, Dehong Hu, Lye Meng Markillie, William B Chrisler, Matthew J Gaffrey, Charles Ansong, Lori Sussel, Galya Orr
Quantitative gene expression analysis in intact single cells can be achieved using single molecule-based fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH). This approach relies on fluorescence intensity to distinguish between true signals, emitted from an RNA copy hybridized with multiple oligonucleotide probes, and background noise. Thus, the precision in smFISH is often compromised by partial or nonspecific probe binding and tissue autofluorescence, especially when only a small number of probes can be fitted to the target transcript...
January 25, 2018: Nucleic Acids Research
Susan Duncan, Stefanie Rosa
Single molecule RNA fluorescent in situ hybridization (smFISH) enables gene transcription to be assessed at the cellular level. In this point of view article, we describe our recent smFISH research in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana and discuss how this technique could further knowledge of plant gene transcription in the future.
2018: Transcription
Matthew C Pharris, Tzu-Ching Wu, Xinping Chen, Xu Wang, David M Umulis, Vikki M Weake, Tamara L Kinzer-Ursem
Advanced molecular probing techniques such as single molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization (smFISH) or RNAscope can be used to assess the quantity and spatial location of mRNA transcripts within cells. Quantifying mRNA expression in large image sets usually involves automated counting of fluorescent spots. Though conventional spot counting algorithms may suffice, they often lack high-throughput capacity and accuracy in cases of crowded signal or excessive noise. Automatic identification of cells and processing of many images is still a challenge...
2017: MethodsX
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