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Predicting the Fate of Stem Cells

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stem cell photo array

Advanced computer vision technology detects subtle cell movements that are impossible to discern with the human eye.

Credit: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) professor Badri Roysam and University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee professor Andrew Cohen have developed a new method for predicting how stem cells will divide. By using computer vision technology to detect subtle cell movements, the researchers can tell how a stem cell will split and what characteristics the daughter cells will exhibit. "Our new method senses all sorts of tiny differences in the shapes and movements of the cells, and uses these cues to predict what kind of cells it will divide into," Roysam says.

The computer system takes images of cells and uses algorithmic information theoretic prediction (AITP) to observe their behavior and determine what type of daughter cells each will split into. The researchers were able to predict, with 99 percent accuracy if the cells will split into self-renewing or terminal cells.

"Our results suggest that stem cells display subtle dynamic patterns that can be sensed computationally to predict the outcome of their next division using AITP," Roysam says.

From RPI News
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Abstracts Copyright © 2010 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


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