Cell Biology


Protocols in Current Issue
Protocols in Past Issues
0 Q&A 5675 Views May 20, 2021

Surface proteins of Staphylococcus aureus and other Gram-positive bacteria play essential roles in bacterial colonization and host-microbe interactions. Surface protein precursors containing a YSIRK/GXXS signal peptide are translocated across the septal membrane at mid-cell, anchored to the cell wall peptidoglycan at the cross-wall compartment, and presented on the new hemispheres of the daughter cells following cell division. After several generations of cell division, these surface proteins will eventually cover the entire cell surface. To understand how these proteins travel from the bacterial cytoplasm to the cell surface, we describe a series of immunofluorescence microscopy protocols designed to detect the stepwise subcellular localization of the surface protein precursors: surface display (protocol A), cross-wall localization (protocol B), and cytoplasmic/septal membrane localization (protocol C). Staphylococcal protein A (SpA) is the model protein used in this work. The protocols described here are readily adapted to study the localization of other surface proteins as well as other cytoplasmic or membrane proteins in S. aureus in general. Furthermore, the protocols can be modified and adapted for use in other Gram-positive bacteria.

Graphic abstract:

Tracking the subcellular localization of surface proteins in S. aureus

0 Q&A 7242 Views Aug 5, 2019
The essential peptidoglycan (PG) layer surrounds the cytoplasmic membrane in nearly all bacteria. It is needed to maintain the shape of the cell and protect it from lysis due to high turgor. Growth of the PG layer is a complex process that involves the activities of PG synthases and hydrolases during elongation and cell division. PG growth sites can be labeled by the recently developed fluorescent D-amino acid (FDAA) probes in a range of different bacteria. FDAAs are incorporated into PG by DD-transpeptidases (Penicillin-binding proteins, PBPs) or, if present, LD-transpeptidase (LDTs). Long-pulse in situ labeling of E. coli cells with the FDAA 7-hydroxycoumarincarbonylamino-D-alanine (HADA) is expected to result in a uniform label at the side wall of cells and enhanced label at cell division sites due to the intense PG synthesis. However, we observed reduced label at mid-cell when labeling E. coli cells with HADA. We reasoned that probe incorporated at cell division sites may be removed by PG hydrolases and modified the labeling protocol to better preserve PG-incorporated HADA for fluorescence microscopy. Here, we report the optimized HADA-labeling protocol by which cells retain an enhanced HADA signal at the division septum.
0 Q&A 6386 Views May 20, 2018
Osteoblasts are bone marrow endosteum-lining niche cells playing important roles in the regulation of hematopoietic stem cells by secreting factors and cell adhesion molecules. Characterization of primary osteoblasts has been achieved through culture of outgrowth of collagenase treated bone. Immunophenotyping and flow-based analysis of long bone osteoblasts offer a simplified and rapid approach to characterize osteoblasts. We describe a modified procedure of isolating mouse bone marrow osteoblastic cells based on cell surface immunophenotyping. The chemokine CXCL12 (also known as stromal-derived factor, SDF-1) together with its receptor CXCR4 are expressed by osteoblasts and bone marrow stroma cells. The CXCL12-CXCR4 axis is important for hematopoietic stem cell retention to their niches (Sugiyama et al., 2006) and for supporting leukemia initiating cell activity (Pitt et al., 2015). Here we describe the procedure of intracellular staining of CXCL12.
0 Q&A 8815 Views Apr 5, 2017
In this protocol we describe how to visualize neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) and fungal cell wall changes in the context of the coculture of mouse neutrophils with fungal hyphae of Candida albicans. These protocols are easily adjusted to test a wide array of hypotheses related to the impact of immune cells on fungi and the cell wall, making them promising tools for exploring host-pathogen interactions during fungal infection.
0 Q&A 11710 Views Mar 20, 2015
With this protocol you can perform a gram stain in paraffin embedded tissue sections.
0 Q&A 10889 Views Mar 20, 2015
This protocol provides the possibility to isolate leukocytes including neutrophils out of intestinal tissues to use the received cells in further experiments of interest.

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