Nov 20, 2018

Probing Cell Mechanics with Bead-Free Optical Tweezers in the Drosophila Embryo

Journal of Visualized Experiments : JoVE
Claire ChardèsPierre-François Lenne

Abstract

Morphogenesis requires coordination between genetic patterning and mechanical forces to robustly shape the cells and tissues. Hence, a challenge to understand morphogenetic processes is to directly measure cellular forces and mechanical properties in vivo during embryogenesis. Here, we present a setup of optical tweezers coupled to a light sheet microscope, which allows to directly apply forces on cell-cell contacts of the early Drosophila embryo, while imaging at a speed of several frames per second. This technique has the advantage that it does not require the injection of beads into the embryo, usually used as intermediate probes on which optical forces are exerted. We detail step by step the implementation of the setup, and propose tools to extract mechanical information from the experiments. By monitoring the displacements of cell-cell contacts in real time, one can perform tension measurements and investigate cell contacts' rheology.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Embryo
In Vivo
Exploration With a Probe
Mechanical Treatments
Exertion
Entire Embryo
retm
Drosophila
Injection Procedure
Embryonic Development

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