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Journal Article

Studying the Protein Quality Control System of D. discoideum Using Temperature-controlled Live Cell Imaging.


Alberti,  Simon
Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, Max Planck Society;

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Malinovska, L., & Alberti, S. (2016). Studying the Protein Quality Control System of D. discoideum Using Temperature-controlled Live Cell Imaging. Journal of Visualized Experiments: Jove, (118): e54730.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-037D-0
The complex lifestyle of the social amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum makes it a valuable model for the study of various biological processes. Recently, we showed that D. discoideum is remarkably resilient to protein aggregation and can be used to gain insights into the cellular protein quality control system. However, the use of D. discoideum as a model system poses several challenges to microscopy-based experimental approaches, such as the high motility of the cells and their susceptibility to photo-toxicity. The latter proves to be especially challenging when studying protein homeostasis, as the phototoxic effects can induce a cellular stress response and thus alter to behavior of the protein quality control system. Temperature increase is a commonly used way to induce cellular stress. Here, we describe a temperature-controllable imaging protocol, which allows observing temperature-induced perturbations in D. discoideum. Moreover, when applied at normal growth temperature, this imaging protocol can also noticeably reduce photo-toxicity, thus allowing imaging with higher intensities. This can be particularly useful when imaging proteins with very low expression levels. Moreover, the high mobility of the cells often requires the acquisition of multiple fields of view to follow individual cells, and the number of fields needs to be balanced against the desired time interval and exposure time.