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Imaging Intermediate Filaments and Microtubules with 2-dimensional Direct Stochastic Optical Reconstruction Microscopy

Abstract : The cytoskeleton, composed of actin microfilaments, microtubules, and intermediate filaments (IF), plays a key role in the control of cell shape, polarity, and motility. The organization of the actin and microtubule networks has been extensively studied but that of IFs is not yet fully characterized. IFs have an average diameter of 10 nm and form a network extending throughout the cell cytoplasm. They are physically associated with actin and microtubules through molecular motors and cytoskeletal linkers. This tight association is at the heart of the regulatory mechanisms that ensure the coordinated regulation of the three cytoskeletal networks required for most cell functions. It is therefore crucial to visualize IFs alone and also together with each of the other cytoskeletal networks. However, IF networks are extremely dense in most cell types, especially in glial cells, which makes its resolution very difficult to achieve with standard fluorescence microscopy (lateral resolution of ~250 nm). Direct STochastic Optical Reconstruction Microscopy (dSTORM) is a technique allowing a gain in lateral resolution of one order of magnitude. Here, we show that lateral dSTORM resolution is sufficient to resolve the dense organization of the IF networks and, in particular, of IF bundles surrounding microtubules. Such tight association is likely to participate in the coordinated regulation of these two networks and may, explain how vimentin IFs template and stabilize microtubule organization as well as could influence microtubule dependent vesicular trafficking. More generally, we show how the observation of two cytoskeletal components with dual-color dSTORM technique brings new insight into their mutual interaction.
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Cécile Leduc, Audrey Salles, Spencer Shorte, Sandrine Etienne-Manneville. Imaging Intermediate Filaments and Microtubules with 2-dimensional Direct Stochastic Optical Reconstruction Microscopy. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE, JoVE, 2018, pp.e57087. ⟨10.3791/57087⟩. ⟨pasteur-02057833⟩

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