Optogenetic perturbation and bioluminescence imaging to analyze cell-to-cell transfer of oscillatory information

Akihiro Isomura, Fumiko Ogushi, Hiroshi Kori, Ryoichiro Kageyama

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    33 Citations (Scopus)


    Cells communicate with each other to coordinate their gene activities at the population level through signaling pathways. It has been shown that many gene activities are oscillatory and that the frequency and phase of oscillatory gene expression encode various types of information. However, whether or how such oscillatory information is transmitted from cell to cell remains unknown. Here, we developed an integrated approach that combines optogenetic perturbations and single-cell bioluminescence imaging to visualize and reconstitute synchronized oscillatory gene expression in signal-sending and signal-receiving processes. We found that intracellular and intercellular periodic inputs of Notch signaling entrain intrinsic oscillations by frequency tuning and phase shifting at the single-cell level. In this way, the oscillation dynamics are transmitted through Notch signaling, thereby synchronizing the population of oscillators. Thus, this approach enabled us to control and monitor dynamic cell-to-cell transfer of oscillatory information to coordinate gene expression patterns at the population level.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)524-535
    Number of pages12
    JournalGenes and Development
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2017 Mar 1


    • Frequency tuning
    • Live imaging
    • Notch signaling
    • Optogenetics
    • Oscillatory expression
    • Phase shifting
    • Synchronization

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Genetics
    • Developmental Biology


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