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The use of DAPI fluorescence lifetime imaging for investigating chromatin condensation in human chromosomes

Estandarte, AK; Botchway, S; Lynch, C; Yusuf, M; Robinson, I; (2016) The use of DAPI fluorescence lifetime imaging for investigating chromatin condensation in human chromosomes. Scientific Reports , 6 , Article 31417. 10.1038/srep31417. Green open access

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Abstract

Chromatin undergoes dramatic condensation and decondensation as cells transition between the different phases of the cell cycle. The organization of chromatin in chromosomes is still one of the key challenges in structural biology. Fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM), a technique which utilizes a fluorophore’s fluorescence lifetime to probe changes in its environment, was used to investigate variations in chromatin compaction in fixed human chromosomes. Fixed human metaphase and interphase chromosomes were labeled with the DNA minor groove binder, DAPI, followed by measurement and imaging of the fluorescence lifetime using multiphoton excitation. DAPI lifetime variations in metaphase chromosome spreads allowed mapping of the differentially compacted regions of chromatin along the length of the chromosomes. The heteromorphic regions of chromosomes 1, 9, 15, 16, and Y, which consist of highly condensed constitutive heterochromatin, showed statistically significant shorter DAPI lifetime values than the rest of the chromosomes. Differences in the DAPI lifetimes for the heteromorphic regions suggest differences in the structures of these regions. DAPI lifetime variations across interphase nuclei showed variation in chromatin compaction in interphase and the formation of chromosome territories. The successful probing of differences in chromatin compaction suggests that FLIM has enormous potential for application in structural and diagnostic studies.

Type: Article
Title: The use of DAPI fluorescence lifetime imaging for investigating chromatin condensation in human chromosomes
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/srep31417
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep31417
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Chromosomes, Microscopy, Nuclear organization
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Chemical Engineering
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > London Centre for Nanotechnology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1530823
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