Image-tracking technology produces bounty of data on cell behavior
Time-lapse microscopy is one of the microbiologist’s most powerful tools for revealing the behavior of stem cells, those tiny building blocks of the human body that hold promise for treating diseases. So powerful are these modern microscopes, in fact, that they can generate huge amounts of time-lapse imagery in less time than it takes to say “mitosis.” But to validate the findings, researchers must wade through and organize volumes of data. And that creates a pesky bottleneck.
Now, Dr. Andrew Cohen and his team at Drexel’s College of Engineering have developed new cell-tracking programs that combine rapid algorithms with easy visual verification, and they have made the programs available to other researchers. Their methodology — image-tracking that allows humans to validate data, correct errors and improve the algorithms along the way — builds a vast, rich data set, allowing scientists to ask important questions about cell behavior.
Life made visible at its very origins. Software made open to the public. Drexel research makes a difference.