During cardiac disease, intracellular cardiomyocyte organelles and proteins are remodeled and disrupted, thereby reducing cardiac performance. Robust and versatile tools for characterization of such sub-cellular structures are needed.
While analysis programs for continuous and regular structures such as rodent ventricular t-tubules are available, at least in 2D, these approaches are less appropriate for assessment of more irregular structures, such as dyadic proteins and non-rodent t-tubules. In the present paper, a versatile, easy-to-use software that performs such analyses is demonstrated. The software, called Tubulator, enables automated analysis of both tissue sections and isolated myocytes. Importantly, Tubulator provides tools for 3D assessment and rendering of image stacks, extending examinations from the single plane to the whole-myocyte level. This freely accessible program provides detailed automated analysis of the three-dimensional nature of dyadic and t-tubular structures.
Tubulator’a versatility enables advances analysis of tissue sections in 3D. Tubulator is able to perform detailed analysis on mltiple cells from the same section in three dimensions. The image depicts intracellular distances from the cellular membrane and t-tubules through a sequence of images.