21 March 2016 In-vivo cell tracking to quantify endothelial cell migration during zebrafish angiogenesis
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Abstract
The mechanism of endothelial cell migration as individual cells or collectively while remaining an integral component of a functional blood vessel has not been well characterized. In this study, our overarching goal is to define an image processing workflow to facilitate quantification of how endothelial cells within the first aortic arch and are proximal to the zebrafish heart behave in response to the onset of flow (i.e. onset of heart beating). Endothelial cell imaging was conducted at this developmental time-point i.e. ~24-28 hours post fertilization (hpf) when flow first begins, using 3D+time two-photon confocal microscopy of a live, wild-type, transgenic, zebrafish expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) in endothelial cell nuclei. An image processing pipeline comprised of image signal enhancement, median filtering for speckle noise reduction, automated identification of the nuclei positions, extraction of the relative movement of nuclei between consecutive time instances, and finally tracking of nuclei, was designed for achieving the tracking of endothelial cell nuclei and the identification of their movement towards or away from the heart. Pilot results lead to a hypothesis that upon the onset of heart beat and blood flow, endothelial cells migrate collectively towards the heart (by 21.51±10.35 μm) in opposition to blood flow (i.e. subtending 142.170±21.170 with the flow direction).
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Prahlad G. Menon, Elizabeth R. Rochon, Beth L. Roman, "In-vivo cell tracking to quantify endothelial cell migration during zebrafish angiogenesis", Proc. SPIE 9784, Medical Imaging 2016: Image Processing, 97844A (21 March 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2217614; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2217614
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