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Methods Cell Biol. 2008;85:179-218.

Expression and imaging of fluorescent proteins in the C. elegans gonad and early embryo.

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Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093, USA.


The Caenorhabditis elegans gonad and early embryo have recently emerged as an attractive metazoan model system for studying cell and developmental biology. The success of this system is attributable to the stereotypical architecture and reproducible cell divisions of the gonad/early embryo, coupled with penetrant RNAi-mediated protein depletion. These features have facilitated the development of visual assays with high spatiotemporal resolution to monitor specific subcellular processes. Assay development has relied heavily on the emergence of methods to circumvent germline silencing to allow the expression of transgenes encoding fluorescent fusion proteins. In this chapter, we discuss methods for the expression and imaging of fluorescent proteins in the C. elegans germline, including the design of transgenes for optimal expression, the generation of transgenic worm lines by ballistic bombardment, the construction of multimarker lines by mating, and methods for live imaging of the gonad and early embryo.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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