Simultaneously identifying S-phase labelled cells and immunogold-labelling of vinculin in focal adhesions

Iolo A. ap Gwynn, G. R. Owen, R. G. Richards, D. O. Meredith

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19 Citations (SciVal)


A new combination of autoradiography and immunolabelling techniques is presented that allows the simultaneous identification of both S-phase cells and their focal adhesions using scanning electron microscopy. The technique allows both labels to be discerned visually by their unique shapes and location within and on the cell. S-phase cells were radio-labelled with a pulse of tritiated thymidine, selectively incorporated into synthesizing DNA. The cells were then immunogold-labelled for the focal adhesion protein, vinculin, prepared for autoradiography, and embedded in resin. The resin was then polymerized before removing the substrate, to expose the embedded cell undersurface. Electron-energy 'sectioning' of the sample by varying the accelerating voltage of the electron beam allowed separate S-phase cell identification in one electron-energy 'section' and visualization of immunogold label in another 'section', within the same cell. As a result of applying this technique it was possible to positively identify S-phase cells and immunogold-labelled focal adhesions on the same cell simultaneously, which could be used to quantify focal adhesion sites on different substrates.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-36
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Microscopy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • Autoradiography
  • cell adhesion
  • cell cycle
  • focal adhesions
  • immunogold labelling
  • scanning electron microscopy
  • vinculin


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