Gap Junctional Intercellular Communication: A Functional Biomarker to Assess Adverse Effects of Toxicants and Toxins, and Health Benefits of Natural Products

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UPHAM BL SOVADINOVÁ Iva BABICA Pavel

Druh Článek v odborném periodiku
Časopis / Zdroj JOVE-JOURNAL OF VISUALIZED EXPERIMENTS
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Přírodovědecká fakulta

Citace
Doi http://dx.doi.org/10.3791/54281
Obor Vliv životního prostředí na zdraví
Klíčová slova Cellular Biology; Issue 118; gap junctional intercellular communication; scalpel load-fluorescent dye transfer; in vitro toxicology; biomarker; cell signaling; signal transduction; cancer; chemoprevention
Popis This protocol describes a scalpel loading-fluorescent dye transfer (SL-DT) technique that measures intercellular communication through gap junction channels, which is a major intercellular process by which tissue homeostasis is maintained. Interruption of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) by toxicants, toxins, drugs, etc. has been linked to numerous adverse health effects. Many genetic-based human diseases have been linked to mutations in gap junction genes. The SL-DT technique is a simple functional assay for the simultaneous assessment of GJIC in a large population of cells. The assay involves pre-loading cells with a fluorescent dye by briefly perturbing the cell membrane with a scalpel blade through a population of cells. The fluorescent dye is then allowed to traverse through gap junction channels to neighboring cells for a designated time. The assay is then terminated by the addition of formalin to the cells. The spread of the fluorescent dye through a population of cells is assessed with an epifluorescence microscope and the images are analyzed with any number of morphometric software packages that are available, including free software packages found on the public domain. This assay has also been adapted for in vivo studies using tissue slices from various organs from treated animals. Overall, the SL-DT assay can serve a broad range of in vitro pharmacological and toxicological needs, and can be potentially adapted for high throughput set-up systems with automated fluorescence microscopy imaging and analysis to elucidate more samples in a shorter time.

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