Live Imaging of Cytoskeletal Dynamics in Embryonic Xenopus laevis Growth Cones and Neural Crest Cells

Cold Spring Harb Protoc. 2021 Apr 1;2021(4):pdb.prot104463. doi: 10.1101/pdb.prot104463.


The cytoskeleton is a dynamic, fundamental network that not only provides mechanical strength to maintain a cell's shape but also controls critical events like cell division, polarity, and movement. Thus, how the cytoskeleton is organized and dynamically regulated is critical to our understanding of countless processes. Live imaging of fluorophore-tagged cytoskeletal proteins allows us to monitor the dynamic nature of cytoskeleton components in embryonic cells. Here, we describe a protocol to monitor and analyze cytoskeletal dynamics in primary embryonic neuronal growth cones and neural crest cells obtained from Xenopus laevis embryos.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actin Cytoskeleton / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism*
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian / embryology
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian / metabolism*
  • Growth Cones / metabolism*
  • Microscopy, Confocal / methods*
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence / methods*
  • Microtubules / metabolism
  • Neural Crest / cytology
  • Neural Crest / embryology
  • Neural Crest / metabolism*
  • Neurons / metabolism
  • Xenopus laevis