Innovative Research Solution

The Goal: Improve analysis of actin
fiber direction in mouse heart cells

The Challenge

Dr. Masaaki Yoshigi is an MD, a Ph.D., a former Huntsman Cancer Institute researcher, and a LabVIEW programmer. David Moore met Dr. Yoshigi at NIWeek 2000 where he presented a paper on his work growing mouse heart cells on a flexible sheet as the sheet is stretched.
If you stain and photograph the cells correctly, the actin fibers that form the skeleton of each cell become visible. The fibers tend to align with the direction of stretching, and Dr. Yoshigi was trying to analyze that alignment from the images he captured. He had a technique (based on Fourier transforms) that would give one result for a whole image, but he really wanted to know about individual cells, so he asked anyone with suggestions to contact him.