A confocal microscopy image analysis method to measure adhesion and internalization of Pseudomonas aeruginosa multicellular structures into epithelial cells.
Paola Lepanto, Federico Lecumberry, Jéssica Rossello, Arlinet Kierbel
Molecular and Cellular Probes, Volume 28, Number 1, page 1--5 - Feb.. 2013
Research Group(s): Tratamiento de Imagenes (gti)
Department(s): Procesamiento de Señales
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Formation of multicellular structures such as biofilms is an important feature in the physiopathology of many disease-causing bacteria. We recently reported that Pseudomonas aeruginosa adheres to epithelial cells rapidly forming early biofilm-like aggregates, which can then be internalized into cells. Conventional methods to measure adhesion/internalization, such as dilution plating for total cell-associated or antibiotic protected bacteria, do not distinguish between single and aggregated bacteria. We report a procedure that combining double bacteria labeling, confocal microscopy and image analysis allows identification and quantification of the number of adhered and internalized bacteria distinguishing between single and aggregated bacterial cells. A plugin for Fiji to automatically perform these procedures has been generated.

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