Probing cytoplasmic viscosity in the confined geometry of tip-growing plant cells via FRAP

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
James L KingsleyXinming Huang


Understanding plant growth and development is essential to develop the future technologies necessary to meet the anticipated needs of a growing world population. Because plant growth is a manifestation of cellular growth, it is of prime importance to develop a mechanistic understanding of plant cell growth. Transport of cellular cargo, such as proteins, in growing plant cells is essential as it facilitates growth. Developing a quantitative model of growth requires knowledge of the surrounding medium, i.e. the cytoplasm and its inherent properties. Here, we performed Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP) in tip-growing Physcomitrella patens cells, to determine the diffusion coefficient of 3xmEGFP, and calculate an effective cytoplasmic viscosity. In order to interpret the experimental measurements correctly and accurately estimate the diffusion coefficient, we developed a three-dimensional comprehen- sive computational model of the FRAP process, including particle diffusion, the cell boundary effects, and the optical properties of the scanning confocal microscope. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time such an estimate of the viscosity for particles at this length scale is reported for a plant cell. Our...Continue Reading

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Fluorescent Dyes
ARHGAP32 gene
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Catheter Tip
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Physcomitrella patens
Cell Nucleus

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