Measuring cell-edge protrusion dynamics during spreading using live-cell microscopy

Nikola Lukic, Trishna Saha, Stefanie Lapetina, Michal Gendler, Gilad Lehmann, Anthony J. Koleske, Hava Gil-Henn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The development and homeostasis of multicellular organisms rely on coordinated regulation of cell migration. Cell migration is an essential event in the construction and regeneration of tissues, and is critical in embryonic development, immunological responses, and wound healing. Dysregulation of cell motility contributes to pathological disorders, such as chronic inflammation and cancer metastasis. Cell migration, tissue invasion, axon, and dendrite outgrowth all initiate with actin polymerization-mediated cell-edge protrusions. Here, we describe a simple, efficient, time-saving method for the imaging and quantitative analysis of cell-edge protrusion dynamics during spreading. This method measures discrete features of cell-edge membrane dynamics, such as protrusions, retractions, and ruffles, and can be used to assess how manipulations of key actin regulators impact cell-edge protrusions in diverse contexts.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere63157
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number177
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2021

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© 2021 JoVE Journal of Visualized Experiments.


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