Trypanosoma cruzi: single cell live imaging inside infected tissues

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Abstract

Summary

Although imaging the live Trypanosoma cruzi parasite is a routine technique in most laboratories, identification of the parasite in infected tissues and organs has been hindered by their intrinsic opaque nature. We describe a simple method for in vivo observation of live single-cell Trypanosoma cruzi parasites inside mammalian host tissues. BALB/c or C57BL/6 mice infected with DsRed-CL or GFP-G trypomastigotes had their organs removed and sectioned with surgical blades. Ex vivo organ sections were observed under confocal microscopy. For the first time, this procedure enabled imaging of individual amastigotes, intermediate forms and motile trypomastigotes within infected tissues of mammalian hosts.

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