Imaging cell competition in Drosophila imaginal discs

Methods Enzymol. 2012;506:407-13. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-391856-7.00044-5.


Cell competition is a process in which cells with higher fitness ("winners") survive and proliferate at the expense of less fit neighbors ("losers"). It has been suggested that cell competition is involved in a variety of biological processes such as organ size control, tissue homeostasis, cancer progression, and the maintenance of stem cell population. By advent of a genetic mosaic technique, which enables to generate fluorescently marked somatic clones in Drosophila imaginal discs, recent studies have presented some aspects of molecular mechanisms underlying cell competition. Now, with a live-imaging technique using ex vivo-cultured imaginal discs, we can dissect the spatiotemporal nature of competitive cell behaviors within multicellular communities. Here, we describe procedures and tips for live imaging of cell competition in Drosophila imaginal discs.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Communication
  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Cell Survival
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Drosophila / cytology
  • Drosophila / ultrastructure*
  • Imaginal Discs / cytology*
  • Imaginal Discs / ultrastructure*
  • Microscopy, Confocal / methods*