January 18, ’14. In an article, “Transcriptome in vivo analysis of spatially defined single cells in live tissue,” published on the 16th January issue of Nature, (vol.505:264), Ditte Lovatt and 17 of his associates have described a unique technique to retrieve RNA from intact tissue revealing the expression of the genes resident in that cell.
The earlier methods of single-cell RNA retrieval tend to disrupt the surrounding tissue before the RNA is derived. James Eberwine of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and 17 of his colleagues created a template. By adding the tag to human and mouse brain tissue and shining a laser on individual cells, the researchers could activate the tag, retrieve the RNA and sequence it.
The approach could reveal how a cell’s natural microenvironment affect its activity.