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Cell competition: who makes the first move?

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posted on 2023-03-03, 14:13 authored by Nathan DayNathan Day

Poster presented as part of the Crick BioImage Analysis Symposium. 

Cell competition: who makes the first move?

My PhD project focuses on understanding cell competition from a single-cell perspective. I use time lapse microscopyand deep learning image analysis to reverse engineer the mechanisms of two different forms of competition. Cell competition is a biological quality-control phenomenon fundamental to tumorigenesis prevention and healthy devel-opment. The outcomes of cell competition are well established on a population wide level, but the single-cell mechanismsare yet to be fully identified. In this project I have aimed to answer the question of which populations are driving the competition; is it the winner cellsfighting off the losers, the losers sacrificing themselves, or a combination of both?I employ bespoke image analysis scripts to visualise, segment, classify and track large volumes of single-cell image data in order to yield a quantitative assessment of cellular activity. In doing so I aim to further define the characteristics of competition and to ask what really constitutes competition in the first place.

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