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3 Janelia Publications

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    07/29/20 | Dense reconstruction of elongated cell lineages: overcoming suboptimum lineage encoding and sparse cell sampling
    Sugino K, Miyares RL, Espinosa-Medina I, Chen H, Potter CJ, Lee T
    bioRxiv. 07/2020:. doi: 10.1101/2020.07.27.223321

    Acquiring both lineage and cell-type information during brain development could elucidate transcriptional programs underling neuronal diversification. This is now feasible with single-cell RNA-seq combined with CRISPR-based lineage tracing, which generates genetic barcodes with cumulative CRISPR edits. This technique has not yet been optimized to deliver high-resolution lineage reconstruction of protracted lineages. Drosophila neuronal lineages are an ideal model to consider, as multiple lineages have been morphologically mapped at single-cell resolution. Here we find the parameter ranges required to encode a representative neuronal lineage emanating from 100 stem cell divisions. We derive the optimum editing rate to be inversely proportional to lineage depth, enabling encoding to persist across lineage progression. Further, we experimentally determine the editing rates of a Cas9-deaminase in cycling neural stem cells, finding near ideal rates to map elongated Drosophila neuronal lineages. Moreover, we propose and evaluate strategies to separate recurring cell-types for lineage reconstruction. Finally, we present a simple method to combine multiple experiments, which permits dense reconstruction of protracted cell lineages despite suboptimum lineage encoding and sparse cell sampling.Competing Interest StatementThe authors have declared no competing interest.

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    10/28/21 | TEMPO: A system to sequentially label and genetically manipulate vertebrate cell lineages
    Espinosa-Medina I, Feliciano D, Belmonte-Mateos C, Garcia-Marques J, Foster B, Miyares RL, Pujades C, Koyama M, Lee T
    bioRxiv. 10/2021:. doi: 10.1101/2021.10.27.466134

    During development, regulatory factors appear in a precise order to determine cell fates over time. To investigate complex tissue development, one should not just label cell lineages but further visualize and manipulate cells with temporal control. Current strategies for tracing vertebrate cell lineages lack genetic access to sequentially produced cells. Here we present TEMPO (Temporal Encoding and Manipulation in a Predefined Order), an imaging-readable genetic tool allowing differential labelling and manipulation of consecutive cell generations in vertebrates. TEMPO is based on CRISPR and powered by a cascade of gRNAs that drive orderly activation/inactivation of reporters/effectors. Using TEMPO to visualize zebrafish and mouse neurogenesis, we recapitulated birth-order-dependent neuronal fates. Temporally manipulating cell-cycle regulators in mouse cortex progenitors altered the proportion and distribution of neurons and glia, revealing the effects of temporal gene perturbation on serial cell fates. Thus, TEMPO enables sequential manipulation of molecular factors, crucial to study cell-type specification.One-Sentence Summary Gaining sequential genetic access to vertebrate cell lineages.Competing Interest StatementThe authors have declared no competing interest.

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    04/14/19 | Theoretical modeling on CRISPR-coded cell lineages: efficient encoding and optimal reconstruction
    Sugino K, Garcia-Marques J, Espinosa-Medina I, Lee T
    bioRxiv. 04/2019:. doi: 10.1101/538488

    Delineating cell lineages is a prerequisite for interrogating the genesis of cell types. CRISPR/Cas9 can edit genomic sequence during development which enables to trace cell lineages. Recent studies have demonstrated the feasibility of this idea. However, the optimality of the encoding or reconstruction processes has not been adequately addressed. Here, we surveyed a multitude of reconstruction algorithms and found hierarchical clustering, with a metric based on the number of shared Cas9 edits, delivers the best reconstruction. However, the trackable depth is ultimately limited by the number of available coding units that typically decrease exponentially across cell generations. To overcome this limit, we established two strategies that better sustain the coding capacity. One involves controlling target availability via use of parallel gRNA cascades, whereas the other strategy exploits adjustable Cas9/gRNA editing rates. In summary, we provide a theoretical basis in understanding, designing, and analyzing robust CRISPR barcodes for dense reconstruction of protracted cell lineages.

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