New Method Allows Precise Measurement of Transcriptome in Single Cells

April 16, 2015
Fig. 1

Fig 1: MERFISH: a highly multiplexed smFISH approach enabled by combinatorial labeling and error-robust encoding. [Reprinted by permission from AAAS*]

Prof. Xiaowei Zhuang and members of her group have devised a method of visualizing RNA molecules inside cells so that the identity, location, and abundance of more than 1,000 different RNA species can be determined at the same time. The developers of the new technology say it should be possible to scale up the approach so that tens of thousands of RNA species can be imaged and identified in a single cell.

The approach, called multiplexed error-robust fluorescence in situ hybridization (MERFISH), is described in an article published in Science Express*. The technique uses combinatorial labeling, sequential imaging, and error-robust encoding schemes to identify numerous RNA species.

(Continue reading the press release on the Howard Hughes Medical Institute website.)


*K.H. Chen, A.N. Boettiger, J.R. Moffitt, S. Wang, X. Zhuang, "Spatially resolved, highly multiplexed RNA profiling in single cells," Science Express (April 9, 2015) DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa6090.