Science (New York, N.Y.)

Multiplexed protein maps link subcellular organization to cellular states.

PMID 30072512


Obtaining highly multiplexed protein measurements across multiple length scales has enormous potential for biomedicine. Here, we measured, by iterative indirect immunofluorescence imaging (4i), 40-plex protein readouts from biological samples at high-throughput from the millimeter to the nanometer scale. This approach simultaneously captures properties apparent at the population, cellular, and subcellular levels, including microenvironment, cell shape, and cell cycle state. It also captures the detailed morphology of organelles, cytoskeletal structures, nuclear subcompartments, and the fate of signaling receptors in thousands of single cells in situ. We used computer vision and systems biology approaches to achieve unsupervised comprehensive quantification of protein subcompartmentalization within various multicellular, cellular, and pharmacological contexts. Thus, highly multiplexed subcellular protein maps can be used to identify functionally relevant single-cell states.