Imaging the Dorsal-Ventral Axis of Live and Fixed Drosophila melanogaster Embryos

  • Sophia N. Carrell
  • Gregory T. ReevesEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1189)


Optimal imaging conditions are of critical importance in developmental biology, as much of the data in the discipline is acquired through microscopy. However, imaging deep sections of tissue, especially live tissue, can be a technical challenge due to light scattering and difficulties in mounting the sample. In particular, capturing high-quality images of dorsal-ventral cross sections requires “end-on” mounting to orient the anterior-posterior axis vertically. Here we present methods to mount and image dorsal-ventral cross sections of both live and fixed Drosophila melanogaster embryos. Our methods have the advantages of being rapid, allowing deep optical sections, and not requiring expensive, specialized equipment.

Key words

Drosophila melanogaster Embryo Imaging Dorsal-ventral cross section Confocal microscopy Dorsal gradient 



The authors would like to thank Alexander Thomas, Ashley Jermusyk, and Joshua Chappell for review of the manuscript. Many thanks to Michael O’Connell for help with illustrations. SNC is partially supported by the NCSU Biotechnology GAANN fellowship.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Chemical and Biomolecular EngineeringNorth Carolina State UniversityRaleighUSA

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