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The pattern of blood flow in the developing heart has long been proposed to play a significant role in cardiac morphogenesis. In response to flow-induced forces, cultured cardiac endothelial cells rearrange their cytoskeletal structure and change their gene expression profiles. To link such in vitro data to the intact heart, we performed quantitative in(More)
Heart valve anomalies are some of the most common congenital heart defects, yet neither the genetic nor the epigenetic forces guiding heart valve development are well understood. When functioning normally, mature heart valves prevent intracardiac retrograde blood flow; before valves develop, there is considerable regurgitation, resulting in reversing (or(More)
Being able to acquire, visualize, and analyze 3D time series (4D data) from living embryos makes it possible to understand complex dynamic movements at early stages of embryonic development. Despite recent technological breakthroughs in 2D dynamic imaging, confocal microscopes remain quite slow at capturing optical sections at successive depths. However,(More)
Recently developed confocal microscopes allow image acquisition at rapid frame-rates (e.g. 120 frames per second for images of size 512 by 512 pixels) and open new avenues for cardiac imaging at the microscopic scale. The reconstruction and analysis of dynamic 3D data of embryonic hearts require further image processing. The main challenges are the handling(More)
The embryonic vertebrate heart begins pumping blood long before the development of discernable chambers and valves. At these early stages, the heart tube has been described as a peristaltic pump. Recent advances in confocal laser scanning microscopy and four-dimensional visualization have warranted another look at early cardiac structure and function. We(More)
The temporal alignment of nongated slice-sequences acquired at different axial positions in the living embryonic zebrafish heart permits the reconstruction of dynamic, three-dimensional data. This approach overcomes the current acquisition speed limitation of confocal microscopes for real-time three-dimensional imaging of fast processes. Current(More)
Being able to acquire, visualize and analyze 3D time-series (4D data) from living embryos makes it possible to understand complex dynamic movements at early stages of embryonic development. Despite recent technological breakthroughs in 2D dynamic imaging, confocal microscopes remain quite slow at capturing optical sections at successive depths. However,(More)
With the availability of new confocal laser scanning microscopes, fast biological processes, such as the blood flow in living organisms at early stages of the embryonic development, can be observed with unprecedented time resolution. When the object under study has a periodic motion, e.g. a beating embryonic heart, the imaging capabilities can be extended(More)
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