Methods in Molecular Biology™ Volume 468, 2008, pp 145-156

Image Analysis of Calcium Release Dynamics

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Many aspects of animal development are dependent on the dynamic release of calcium (Ca2+) ions. Although Ca2+ release within a cell is tightly controlled, how the release dynamics result in a specific biological output in embryonic development is less clear. The integration of pharmacological and molecular-genetic studies with in vivo imaging in zebrafish and Xenopus has linked endogenous Ca2+ release to the Wnt signaling network. Our data suggests that distinct Ca2+ release dynamics lead to antagonism of the developmentally important Wnt/ß-catenin pathway while sustained Ca2+ release modulates polarized cell movements.