Tracking the fate and function of cells in vivo is paramount for the development of rational therapies for cardiac injury. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI) provides a means for monitoring physiological processes in real time, ranging from cell survival to gene expression to complex molecular processes. In mice and rats, BLI provides unmatched sensitivity because of the absence of endogenous luciferase expression in mammalian cells and the low background luminescence emanating from animals. In the field of stem cell therapy, BLI provides an unprecedented means to monitor the biology of these cells in vivo, giving researchers a greater understanding of their survival, migration, immunogenicity, and potential tumorigenicity in a living animal. In addition to longitudinal monitoring of cell survival, BLI is a useful tool for semiquantitative measurements of gene expression in vivo, allowing a better optimization of drug and gene therapies. Overall, this technology not only enables rapid, reproducible, and quantitative monitoring of physiological processes in vivo but also can measure the influences of therapeutic interventions on the outcome of cardiac injuries.
View details for DOI 10.1152/ajpheart.00337.2011
View details for Web of Science ID 000294431400006
View details for PubMedID 21666118
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3191083