Article: article from journal or magazin.
Correlative light and electron microscopy in parasite research.
Methods in Cell Biology
The interaction of a parasite and a host cell is a complex process, which involves several steps: (1) attachment to the plasma membrane, (2) entry inside the host cell, and (3) hijacking of the metabolism of the host. In biochemical experiments, only an event averaged over the whole cell population can be analyzed. The power of microscopy, however, is to investigate individual events in individual cells. Therefore, parasitologists frequently perform experiments with fluorescence microscopy using different dyes to label structures of the parasite or the host cell. Though the resolution of light microscopy has greatly improved, it is not sufficient to reveal interactions at the ultrastructural level. Furthermore, only specifically labeled structures can be seen and related to each other. Here, we want to demonstrate the additional value of electron microscopy in this area of research. Investigation of the different steps of parasite-host cell interaction by electron microscopy, however, is often hampered by the fact that there are only a few cells infected, and therefore it is difficult to find enough cells to study. A solution is to profit from low magnification, hence large overview, and specific location of the players by fluorescence labels in a light microscope with the high power resolution and structural information provided by an electron microscope, in short by correlative light and electron microscopy.
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