Cell Biology


Protocols in Current Issue
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0 Q&A 9143 Views Mar 20, 2018
The primary cilium is a non-motile sensory organelle whose assembly and disassembly are closely associated with cell cycle progression. The primary cilium is elongated from the basal body in quiescent cells and is resorbed as the cells re-enter the cell cycle. Dysregulation of ciliary dynamics has been linked with ciliopathies and other human diseases. The in vitro serum-stimulated ciliary assembly/disassembly assay has gained popularity in addressing the functions of the protein-of-interest in ciliary dynamics. Here, we describe a well-tested protocol for transfecting human retinal pigment epithelial cells (RPE-1) and performing ciliary assembly/disassembly assays on the transfected cells.
0 Q&A 6800 Views Sep 5, 2017
Organelle movement, distribution and interaction contribute to the organisation of the eukaryotic cell. Peroxisomes are multifunctional organelles which contribute to cellular lipid metabolism and ROS homeostasis. They distribute uniformly in mammalian cells and move along microtubules via kinesin and dynein motors. Their metabolic cooperation with mitochondria and the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is essential for the β-oxidation of fatty acids and the synthesis of myelin lipids and polyunsaturated fatty acids. A key assay to assess peroxisome motility in mammalian cells is the expression of a fluorescent fusion protein with a peroxisomal targeting signal (e.g., GFP-PTS1), which targets the peroxisomal matrix and allows live-cell imaging of peroxisomes. Here, we first present a protocol for the transfection of cultured mammalian cells with the peroxisomal marker EGFP-SKL to observe peroxisomes in living cells. This approach has revealed different motile behaviour of peroxisomes and novel insight into peroxisomal membrane dynamics (Rapp et al., 1996; Wiemer et al., 1997; Schrader et al., 2000). We then present a protocol which combines the live-cell approach with peroxisome motility measurements and quantification of peroxisome dynamics in mammalian cells. More recently, we used this approach to demonstrate that peroxisome motility and displacement is increased when a molecular tether, which associates peroxisomes with the ER, is lost (Costello et al., 2017b). Silencing of the peroxisomal acyl-CoA binding domain protein ACBD5, which interacts with ER-localised VAPB, increased peroxisome movement in skin fibroblasts, indicating that membrane contact sites can modulate organelle distribution and motility. The protocols described can be adapted to other cell types and organelles to measure and quantify organelle movement under different experimental conditions.



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