Fluorescence Digital Image Gallery

Embryonic Rat Thoracic Aorta Medial Layer Myoblast Cells (A-10)

Concanavalin A is one of the most widely utilized of the sugar-binding proteins known as lectins. The protein, which selectively binds to alpha-mannopyranosyl and alpha-glucopyranosyl residues, has, for instance, been utilized for such wide-ranging applications as mitotic assays, membrane fluidity investigations, analyses of acrosome reaction incidence in human sperm cells, and hormone receptor studies. Concanavalin A exists as a tetramer of four identical subunits approximately 26,000 Daltons in size each at neutral and alkaline pH levels. Below pH 5.6, however, the lectin dissociates into active dimers. Similar to many other lectins, concanavalin A is derived from the seeds of a leguminous plant, specifically the Jack bean (Canavalia ensiformis).

The adherent culture of rat thoracic aorta cells featured in the digital image above was stained with Alexa Fluor 488 conjugated to the lectin concanavalin A. Alexa Fluor 568 conjugated to phalloidin and DAPI were also used to label the culture, targeting filamentous actin and nuclear DNA, respectively. Images were recorded in grayscale with a QImaging Retiga Fast-EXi camera system coupled to an Olympus BX-51 microscope equipped with bandpass emission fluorescence filter optical blocks provided by Omega Optical. During the processing stage, individual image channels were pseudocolored with RGB values corresponding to each of the fluorophore emission spectral profiles.

View a larger image of the rat thoracic aorta (A-10) cells.

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