Cell Fate Determination
Cell Fate Determination is mainly focused to understand how a particular cell (or embryo) develops into the final cell type (or organism), essentially how a cell's fate is determined. The development of new molecular tools including GFP and major advances in imaging technology including fluorescence microscopy have made possible the mapping of the cell lineage of Caenorhabditis elegans including its embryo. This technique of fate mapping is used to study cells as they differentiate into their final cell fates. Merely observing a cell as it becomes differentiated during embryogenesis provides no indication of the mechanisms that drive the specification. Therefore, the addition of molecular manipulation techniques, including gene and protein knockdowns, knockouts and overexpression, along with living cell imaging techniques has been transformational in understanding what mechanisms are involved with cell fate determination.