Conditional mutants for flagellar assembly (fla) provide a useful tool to study intraflagellar transport (IFT) at the molecular level, and provide a unique set of tools to analyze cilia. The analysis of IFT phenotypes of fla mutants at the permissive temperature by a quantitative image analysis approach identified four distinct phases of the IFT cycle and directly demonstrated structural and functional remodeling of IFT particles at both axonemal extremities. In addition, the genetic analysis of fla mutants reveal interesting interactions among genes involved in flagellar assembly that help to provide information about the structure and function of IFT particles and their motors. This chapter provides protocols to isolate, characterize, and identify conditional Chlamydomonas flagellar assembly mutants and their genes and to test genetic interactions among proteins encoded by these genes.
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