Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP7

SYSTEMS MICROSCOPY — Result In Brief

Project ID: 258068
Funded under: FP7-HEALTH
Country: Sweden

Four-dimensional cell imaging microscopy system

A multidisciplinary consortium of 15 groups is working to develop methodology utilizing high resololution microscopy data for systems biology. Systems microscopy emerges as a powerful tool for unveiling cell migration and division.
Four-dimensional cell imaging microscopy system
Manner in which complex biological processes are tightly regulated in space and time dictates normal or abnormal physiology. Scientists need to record and integrate multiparametric data of spatial and temporal dimensions to differentiate between normal and diseased processes.

With this in mind, the EU-funded 'Systems microscopy - a key enabling methodology for next-generation systems biology' (SYSTEMS MICROSCOPY) project is developing a technological platform for studying single cells in three-dimensional (3D) space and time. It is based on advanced light microscopy to produce high-content data from images.

One of the network's objectives is to develop a novel pan-European microscopy infrastructure for systems biology. This includes new imaging platforms and software, as well as methods for statistics, bioinformatics and modelling of systems biology. Cellular dynamics are studied in a multidimensional manner to maximise the amount of information that can be extracted from the imaging of live cells.

The network is particularly interested in delineating the processes of cell division and cell migration implicated in cancer biology. For this purpose, they are using time-lapse imaging to visualise the effect of down-regulating the expression of several hundred mitotic genes at the single-cell level.

Furthermore, scientists have developed a model to simulate the process of mitosis through the clustering and classification of cell division movies. Testing of the translational applicability of the SYSTEMS MICROSCOPY approach has so far identified the deregulation of a set of mitosis-related genes in basal breast cancer samples.

Project methods, strategies and tools have the potential to be applied to many disease-associated processes. The unique features of systems microscopy promises its fast integration in the research field of systems biology as well as identifying the mechanisms of drug action.

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