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Bacterial TEM: New Insights from Cryo-Microscopy

Pilhofer, Martin and Ladinsky, Mark S. and McDowall, Alasdair W. and Jensen, Grant J. (2010) Bacterial TEM: New Insights from Cryo-Microscopy. In: Electron Microscopy of Model Systems. Methods in Cell Biology . No.96. Elsevier , pp. 21-45. ISBN 978-0-12-381007-6.

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Some bacteria are amongst the most important model organisms for biology and medicine. Here we review how electron microscopes have been used to image bacterial cells, summarizing the technical details of the various methods, the advantages and disadvantages of each, and the major biological insights that have been obtained. Three specific example structures, “mesosomes,” “cytoskeletal filaments,” and “nucleoid,” are used to illustrate how methodological advances have shaped our understanding of bacterial ultrastructure. Methods that involve dehydration and metal stains are widely practiced and have revealed many ultrastructural features, but they can generate misleading artifacts and have failed to preserve important structures such as the bacterial cytoskeleton. The invention of cryo-electron microscopy, which allows bacterial cells to be imaged in a frozen-hydrated, near-native state without the need for dehydration and stains, has now led to important new insights. Efforts to identify structures and localize specific proteins in cryo-EM images are summarized.

Item Type:Book Section
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URLURL TypeDescription DOIArticle
Ladinsky, Mark S.0000-0002-1036-3513
Jensen, Grant J.0000-0003-1556-4864
Additional Information:© 2010 Elsevier Inc. Available online 23 September 2010. Giulio Petroni and Karl-Heinz Schleifer are acknowledged for providing their laboratories and assistance for traditional thin-section EM of recombinant E. coli cells. Dylan M. Morris, H. Jane Ding, and Sarah Cheng are acknowledged for providing movies. MP and GJJ are supported by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. AWM is supported in part by NIH grants R01 AI067548, R01 GM081520, R01 GM086200, R01 AI049194, and by the Beckman Institute at Caltech. MSL is supported by NIH grant 2R37-A1041239-06A1 to Pamela S. Björkman. EM studies of bacterial ultrastructure in the Jensen laboratory at Caltech are supported in part by gifts to Caltech from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and Agouron Institute.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NIHR01 AI067548
NIHR01 GM081520
NIHR01 GM086200
NIHR01 AI049194
Caltech Beckman InstituteUNSPECIFIED
Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)UNSPECIFIED
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Agouron InstituteUNSPECIFIED
Series Name:Methods in Cell Biology
Issue or Number:96
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20101012-135545845
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:20409
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:30 Nov 2010 00:39
Last Modified:05 Nov 2019 21:29

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