The nucleus is a regulation center for cellular gene expression 1. Mechanical forces transfer to the nucleus directly and indirectly through cellular cytoskeletal structures and pathways 2, 3. The transmitted strains often cause nuclear deformation which is thought to trigger mechanosensitive gene expression within the nucleus 4. Protein dynamics inside the nucleus are additionally important for maintaining the nuclear structure and in facilitating gene expression at the transcription level 5. Probing spatiotemporal relationships between mechanical forces and localized gene expression (i.e. biophysical and biochemical factors) in the nuclei of cells is important in order to clarify variability observed in large and heterogeneous cell populations within complex tissues. This requires the development of innovative methods for intranuclear strain measurements of cells in situ, and the further capability to quantify associated biochemical responses. This abstract describes a method combining the simultaneous measurement of newly synthesized RNA with spatiotemporal intranuclear strain mapping in single cells embedded in native tissue.

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