Endocytosis is one of the most essential cellular processes, which enables cells to internalise diverse -material. It is crucial for regulation of receptor activity and signalling, cell polarisation, attachment and motility, and a great number of other cellular functions. A number of diverse endocytosis pathways are described by now; however, their specificity for different cellular cargoes is poorly resolved. Only few of endocytosis regulators are well-characterised and even less are attributed to the specific cargo. That is very true for the integrin endocytosis pathway, which is a key process in cell migration, adhesion, and signalling. The recent advent of quantitative fluorescent microscopy and cell arrays opened an exciting possibility to systematically characterise molecules playing a role in this crucially important process. Here, we describe a fluorescent screening microscopy-based assay to identify regulators of integrin α2 internalisation. The experimental procedure is the best suited for a highly parallel screening format, such as cell arrays, albeit can be used in single experiments. We provide protocols for sample preparation, fabrication of cell arrays and quantification of integrin α2 internalisation. The approach can be modified to quantify endocytosis of other cargo, and can be used under the conditions of knock-down and knock-in as well as for chemical screening.
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