2010 Student Research Conference:
23rd Annual Student Research Conference

A Glazier-Granier-Hogeweg Model of Early Embryogenesis in Ceanorhabditis elegans
Corey R. Johnson* and Christopher P. Zittnan
Dr. Timothy D. Walston and Dr. Scott Thatcher, Faculty Mentors

The simplicity of the four-cell Caenorhabditis elegans embryo allows for detailed observation and analysis of the forces acting upon blastomeres during early embryogenesis. The cell shapes and movements can easily be observed using four-dimensional microscopy and analyzed using partially automated image segmentation and various statistical methods. This project continued to refine a Glazier-Granier-Hogeweg model of the embryo. Differential interference contrast (DIC) and fluorescent confocal images were collected. These images were processed and segmented using watershed transformations to identify cell boundaries and active contours for the eggshell. The segmented images were used as input for the GGH model. The model reproduces cell shape changes seen in the four-cell C. elegans embryo. This model is the first of its type to include centrosomal movement as a factor affecting cell size, shape and movement. This model could be analyzed to enhance our understanding of particular cellular phenomena, which affect cell shape and movement.

Keywords: embryonic development, mathematical model , C. elegans

Topic(s):Mathematical Biology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 1-2
Location: MG 1098
Time: 8:15

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