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Birefringence imaging directly reveals architectural dynamics of filamentous actin in living growth cones

Katoh, Kaoru, Hammar, Katherine, Smith, Peter J.S. and Oldenbourg, Rudolf (1999) Birefringence imaging directly reveals architectural dynamics of filamentous actin in living growth cones Molecular Biology of the Cell, 10, (1), pp. 197-210. (PMID:8900961).

Record type: Article


We have investigated the dynamic behavior of cytoskeletal fine structure in the lamellipodium of nerve growth cones using a new type of polarized light microscope (the Pol-Scope). Pol-Scope images display with exquisite resolution and definition birefringent fine structures, such as filaments and membranes, without having to treat the cell with exogenous dyes or fluorescent labels. Furthermore, the measured birefringence of protein fibers in the thin lamellipodial region can be interpreted in terms of the number of filaments in the bundles. We confirmed that birefringent fibers are actin-based using conventional fluorescence-labeling methods. By recording movies of time-lapsed Pol-Scope images, we analyzed the creation and dynamic composition of radial fibers, filopodia, and intrapodia in advancing growth cones. The strictly quantitative information available in time-lapsed Pol-Scope images confirms previously deduced behavior and provides new insight into the architectural dynamics of filamentous actin.

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Published date: January 1999


Local EPrints ID: 190241
ISSN: 1059-1524
PURE UUID: c0cbd399-4f8e-400e-ad8e-4d8aa2db7123
ORCID for Peter J.S. Smith: ORCID iD

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Date deposited: 17 Jun 2011 13:17
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 11:39

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Author: Kaoru Katoh
Author: Katherine Hammar
Author: Rudolf Oldenbourg

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