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Sample records for fluorescent proteins engineered

  1. An Engineered Palette of Metal Ion Quenchable Fluorescent Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaozhen; Strub, Marie-Paule; Barnard, Travis J.; Noinaj, Nicholas; Piszczek, Grzegorz; Buchanan, Susan K.; Taraska, Justin W.

    2014-01-01

    Many fluorescent proteins have been created to act as genetically encoded biosensors. With these sensors, changes in fluorescence report on chemical states in living cells. Transition metal ions such as copper, nickel, and zinc are crucial in many physiological and pathophysiological pathways. Here, we engineered a spectral series of optimized transition metal ion-binding fluorescent proteins that respond to metals with large changes in fluorescence intensity. These proteins can act as metal biosensors or imaging probes whose fluorescence can be tuned by metals. Each protein is uniquely modulated by four different metals (Cu2+, Ni2+, Co2+, and Zn2+). Crystallography revealed the geometry and location of metal binding to the engineered sites. When attached to the extracellular terminal of a membrane protein VAMP2, dimeric pairs of the sensors could be used in cells as ratiometric probes for transition metal ions. Thus, these engineered fluorescent proteins act as sensitive transition metal ion-responsive genetically encoded probes that span the visible spectrum. PMID:24752441

  2. Advances in engineering of fluorescent proteins and photoactivatable proteins with red emission

    PubMed Central

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2009-01-01

    Monomeric fluorescent proteins of different colors are widely used to study behavior and targeting of proteins in living cells. Fluorescent proteins that irreversibly change their spectral properties in response to light irradiation of a specific wavelength, or photoactivate, have become increasingly popular to image intracellular dynamics and super-resolution protein localization. Until recently, however, no optimized monomeric red fluorescent proteins and red photoactivatable proteins have been available. Furthermore, monomeric fluorescent proteins, which change emission from blue to red simply with time, so-called fluorescent timers, were developed to study protein age and turnover. Understanding of chemical mechanisms of the chromophore maturation or photoactivation into a red form will further advance engineering of fluorescent timers and photoactivatable proteins with enhanced and novel properties. PMID:19914857

  3. Engineering and Characterization of a Superfolder Green Fluorescent Protein

    SciTech Connect

    Pedelacq,J.; Cabantous, S.; Tran, T.; Terwilliger, T.; Waldo, G.

    2006-01-01

    Existing variants of green fluorescent protein (GFP) often misfold when expressed as fusions with other proteins. We have generated a robustly folded version of GFP, called 'superfolder' GFP, that folds well even when fused to poorly folded polypeptides. Compared to 'folding reporter' GFP, a folding-enhanced GFP containing the 'cycle-3' mutations and the 'enhanced GFP' mutations F64L and S65T, superfolder GFP shows improved tolerance of circular permutation, greater resistance to chemical denaturants and improved folding kinetics. The fluorescence of Escherichia coli cells expressing each of eighteen proteins from Pyrobaculum aerophilum as fusions with superfolder GFP was proportional to total protein expression. In contrast, fluorescence of folding reporter GFP fusion proteins was strongly correlated with the productive folding yield of the passenger protein. X-ray crystallographic structural analyses helped explain the enhanced folding of superfolder GFP relative to folding reporter GFP.

  4. Thermal green protein, an extremely stable, nonaggregating fluorescent protein created by structure-guided surface engineering

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Close, Devin W.; Paul, Craig Don; Langan, Patricia S.; Wilce, Matthew C. J.; Traore, Daouda A. K.; Halfmann, Randal; Rocha, Reginaldo C.; Waldo, Geoffery S.; Payne, Riley J.; Rucker, Joseph B.; et al

    2015-05-08

    In this paper, we describe the engineering and X-ray crystal structure of Thermal Green Protein (TGP), an extremely stable, highly soluble, non-aggregating green fluorescent protein. TGP is a soluble variant of the fluorescent protein eCGP123, which despite being highly stable, has proven to be aggregation-prone. The X-ray crystal structure of eCGP123, also determined within the context of this paper, was used to carry out rational surface engineering to improve its solubility, leading to TGP. The approach involved simultaneously eliminating crystal lattice contacts while increasing the overall negative charge of the protein. Despite intentional disruption of lattice contacts and introduction ofmore » high entropy glutamate side chains, TGP crystallized readily in a number of different conditions and the X-ray crystal structure of TGP was determined to 1.9 Å resolution. The structural reasons for the enhanced stability of TGP and eCGP123 are discussed. We demonstrate the utility of using TGP as a fusion partner in various assays and significantly, in amyloid assays in which the standard fluorescent protein, EGFP, is undesirable because of aberrant oligomerization.« less

  5. Thermal green protein, an extremely stable, nonaggregating fluorescent protein created by structure-guided surface engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Close, Devin W.; Paul, Craig Don; Langan, Patricia S.; Wilce, Matthew C. J.; Traore, Daouda A. K.; Halfmann, Randal; Rocha, Reginaldo C.; Waldo, Geoffery S.; Payne, Riley J.; Rucker, Joseph B.; Prescott, Mark; Bradbury, Andrew R. M.

    2015-05-08

    In this paper, we describe the engineering and X-ray crystal structure of Thermal Green Protein (TGP), an extremely stable, highly soluble, non-aggregating green fluorescent protein. TGP is a soluble variant of the fluorescent protein eCGP123, which despite being highly stable, has proven to be aggregation-prone. The X-ray crystal structure of eCGP123, also determined within the context of this paper, was used to carry out rational surface engineering to improve its solubility, leading to TGP. The approach involved simultaneously eliminating crystal lattice contacts while increasing the overall negative charge of the protein. Despite intentional disruption of lattice contacts and introduction of high entropy glutamate side chains, TGP crystallized readily in a number of different conditions and the X-ray crystal structure of TGP was determined to 1.9 Å resolution. The structural reasons for the enhanced stability of TGP and eCGP123 are discussed. We demonstrate the utility of using TGP as a fusion partner in various assays and significantly, in amyloid assays in which the standard fluorescent protein, EGFP, is undesirable because of aberrant oligomerization.

  6. Near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from bacterial phytochromes.

    PubMed

    Shcherbakova, Daria M; Baloban, Mikhail; Verkhusha, Vladislav V

    2015-08-01

    Near-infrared fluorescent proteins (NIR FPs), photoactivatable NIR FPs and NIR reporters of protein-protein interactions developed from bacterial phytochrome photoreceptors (BphPs) have advanced non-invasive deep-tissue imaging. Here we provide a brief guide to the BphP-derived NIR probes with an emphasis on their in vivo applications. We describe phenotypes of NIR FPs and their photochemical and intracellular properties. We discuss NIR FP applications for imaging of various cell types, tissues and animal models in basic and translational research. In this discussion, we focus on NIR FPs that efficiently incorporate endogenous biliverdin chromophore and therefore can be used as straightforward as GFP-like proteins. We also overview a usage of NIR FPs in different imaging platforms, from planar epifluorescence to tomographic and photoacoustic technologies. PMID:26115447

  7. Near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from bacterial phytochromes

    PubMed Central

    Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Baloban, Mikhail; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2015-01-01

    Near-infrared fluorescent proteins (NIR FPs), photoactivatable NIR FPs and NIR reporters of protein-protein interactions developed from bacterial phytochrome photoreceptors (BphPs) have advanced non-invasive deep-tissue imaging. Here we provide a brief guide to the BphP-derived NIR probes with an emphasis on their in vivo applications. We describe phenotypes of NIR FPs and their photochemical and intracellular properties. We discuss NIR FP applications for imaging of various cell types, tissues and animal models in basic and translational research. In this discussion, we focus on NIR FPs that efficiently incorporate endogenous biliverdin chromophore and therefore can be used as straightforward as GFP-like proteins. We also overview a usage of NIR FPs in different imaging platforms, from planar epifluorescence to tomographic and photoacoustic technologies. PMID:26115447

  8. Ultrafast excited-state dynamics and fluorescence deactivation of near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from bacteriophytochromes.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Jingyi; Shcherbakova, Daria M; Hontani, Yusaku; Verkhusha, Vladislav V; Kennis, John T M

    2015-01-01

    Near-infrared fluorescent proteins, iRFPs, are recently developed genetically encoded fluorescent probes for deep-tissue in vivo imaging. Their functions depend on the corresponding fluorescence efficiencies and electronic excited state properties. Here we report the electronic excited state deactivation dynamics of the most red-shifted iRFPs: iRFP702, iRFP713 and iRFP720. Complementary measurements by ultrafast broadband fluorescence and absorption spectroscopy show that single exponential decays of the excited state with 600~700 ps dominate in all three iRFPs, while photoinduced isomerization was completely inhibited. Significant kinetic isotope effects (KIE) were observed with a factor of ~1.8 in D2O, and are interpreted in terms of an excited-state proton transfer (ESPT) process that deactivates the excited state in competition with fluorescence and chromophore mobility. On this basis, new approaches for rational molecular engineering may be applied to iRFPs to improve their fluorescence. PMID:26246319

  9. Ultrafast excited-state dynamics and fluorescence deactivation of near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from bacteriophytochromes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Jingyi; Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Hontani, Yusaku; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Kennis, John T. M.

    2015-08-01

    Near-infrared fluorescent proteins, iRFPs, are recently developed genetically encoded fluorescent probes for deep-tissue in vivo imaging. Their functions depend on the corresponding fluorescence efficiencies and electronic excited state properties. Here we report the electronic excited state deactivation dynamics of the most red-shifted iRFPs: iRFP702, iRFP713 and iRFP720. Complementary measurements by ultrafast broadband fluorescence and absorption spectroscopy show that single exponential decays of the excited state with 600 ~ 700 ps dominate in all three iRFPs, while photoinduced isomerization was completely inhibited. Significant kinetic isotope effects (KIE) were observed with a factor of ~1.8 in D2O, and are interpreted in terms of an excited-state proton transfer (ESPT) process that deactivates the excited state in competition with fluorescence and chromophore mobility. On this basis, new approaches for rational molecular engineering may be applied to iRFPs to improve their fluorescence.

  10. Strengths and Weaknesses of Recently Engineered Red Fluorescent Proteins Evaluated in Live Cells Using Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Siegel, Amanda P.; Baird, Michelle A.; Davidson, Michael W.; Day, Richard N.

    2013-01-01

    The scientific community is still looking for a bright, stable red fluorescent protein (FP) as functional as the current best derivatives of green fluorescent protein (GFP). The red FPs exploit the reduced background of cells imaged in the red region of the visible spectrum, but photophysical short comings have limited their use for some spectroscopic approaches. Introduced nearly a decade ago, mCherry remains the most often used red FP for fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) and other single molecule techniques, despite the advent of many newer red FPs. All red FPs suffer from complex photophysics involving reversible conversions to a dark state (flickering), a property that results in fairly low red FP quantum yields and potential interference with spectroscopic analyses including FCS. The current report describes assays developed to determine the best working conditions for, and to uncover the shortcoming of, four recently engineered red FPs for use in FCS and other diffusion and spectroscopic studies. All five red FPs assayed had potential shortcomings leading to the conclusion that the current best red FP for FCS is still mCherry. The assays developed here aim to enable the rapid evaluation of new red FPs and their smooth adaptation to live cell spectroscopic microscopy and nanoscopy. PMID:24129172

  11. Allosteric effects of chromophore interaction with dimeric near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from bacterial phytochromes.

    PubMed

    Stepanenko, Olesya V; Baloban, Mikhail; Bublikov, Grigory S; Shcherbakova, Daria M; Stepanenko, Olga V; Turoverov, Konstantin K; Kuznetsova, Irina M; Verkhusha, Vladislav V

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) engineered from bacterial phytochromes attract attention as probes for in vivo imaging due to their near-infrared (NIR) spectra and use of available in mammalian cells biliverdin (BV) as chromophore. We studied spectral properties of the iRFP670, iRFP682 and iRFP713 proteins and their mutants having Cys residues able to bind BV either in both PAS (Cys15) and GAF (Cys256) domains, in one of these domains, or without these Cys residues. We show that the absorption and fluorescence spectra and the chromophore binding depend on the location of the Cys residues. Compared with NIR FPs in which BV covalently binds to Cys15 or those that incorporate BV noncovalently, the proteins with BV covalently bound to Cys256 have blue-shifted spectra and higher quantum yield. In dimeric NIR FPs without Cys15, the covalent binding of BV to Сys256 in one monomer allosterically inhibits the covalent binding of BV to the other monomer, whereas the presence of Cys15 allosterically promotes BV binding to Cys256 in both monomers. The NIR FPs with both Cys residues have the narrowest blue-shifted spectra and the highest quantum yield. Our analysis resulted in the iRFP713/Val256Cys protein with the highest brightness in mammalian cells among available NIR FPs. PMID:26725513

  12. Allosteric effects of chromophore interaction with dimeric near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from bacterial phytochromes

    PubMed Central

    Stepanenko, Olesya V.; Baloban, Mikhail; Bublikov, Grigory S.; Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Stepanenko, Olga V.; Turoverov, Konstantin K.; Kuznetsova, Irina M.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) engineered from bacterial phytochromes attract attention as probes for in vivo imaging due to their near-infrared (NIR) spectra and use of available in mammalian cells biliverdin (BV) as chromophore. We studied spectral properties of the iRFP670, iRFP682 and iRFP713 proteins and their mutants having Cys residues able to bind BV either in both PAS (Cys15) and GAF (Cys256) domains, in one of these domains, or without these Cys residues. We show that the absorption and fluorescence spectra and the chromophore binding depend on the location of the Cys residues. Compared with NIR FPs in which BV covalently binds to Cys15 or those that incorporate BV noncovalently, the proteins with BV covalently bound to Cys256 have blue-shifted spectra and higher quantum yield. In dimeric NIR FPs without Cys15, the covalent binding of BV to Сys256 in one monomer allosterically inhibits the covalent binding of BV to the other monomer, whereas the presence of Cys15 allosterically promotes BV binding to Cys256 in both monomers. The NIR FPs with both Cys residues have the narrowest blue-shifted spectra and the highest quantum yield. Our analysis resulted in the iRFP713/Val256Cys protein with the highest brightness in mammalian cells among available NIR FPs. PMID:26725513

  13. Multiparametric Flow Cytometry Using Near-Infrared Fluorescent Proteins Engineered from Bacterial Phytochromes

    PubMed Central

    Telford, William G.; Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Buschke, David; Hawley, Teresa S.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2015-01-01

    Engineering of fluorescent proteins (FPs) has followed a trend of achieving longer fluorescence wavelengths, with the ultimate goal of producing proteins with both excitation and emission in the near-infrared (NIR) region of the spectrum. Flow cytometers are now almost universally equipped with red lasers, and can now be equipped with NIR lasers as well. Most red-shifted FPs of the GFP-like family are maximally excited by orange lasers (590 to 610 nm) not commonly found on cytometers. This has changed with the development of the iRFP series of NIR FPs from the protein family of bacterial phytochromes. The shortest wavelength variants of this series, iRFP670 and iRFP682 showed maximal excitation with visible red lasers. The longer wavelength variants iRFP702, iRFP713 and iRFP720 could be optimally excited by NIR lasers ranging from 685 to 730 nm. Pairs of iRFPs could be detected simultaneously by using red and NIR lasers. Moreover, a novel spectral cytometry technique, which relies on spectral deconvolution rather than optical filters, allowed spectra of all five iRFPs to be analyzed simultaneously with no spectral overlap. Together, the combination of iRFPs with the advanced flow cytometry will allow to first image tissues expressing iRFPs deep in live animals and then quantify individual cell intensities and sort out the distinct primary cell subpopulations ex vivo. PMID:25811854

  14. Engineering fluorescent proteins towards ultimate performances: lessons from the newly developed cyan variants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mérola, Fabienne; Erard, Marie; Fredj, Asma; Pasquier, Hélène

    2016-03-01

    New fluorescent proteins (FPs) are constantly discovered from natural sources, and submitted to intensive engineering based on random mutagenesis and directed evolution. However, most of these newly developed FPs fail to achieve all the performances required for their bioimaging applications. The design of highly optimised FP-based reporters, simultaneously displaying appropriate colour, multimeric state, chromophore maturation, brightness, photostability and environmental sensitivity will require a better understanding of the structural and dynamic determinants of FP photophysics. The recent development of cyan fluorescent proteins (CFPs) like mCerulean3, mTurquoise2 and Aquamarine brings a different view on these questions, as in this particular case, a step by step evaluation of critical mutations has been performed within a family of spectrally identical and evolutionary close variants. These efforts have led to CFPs with quantum yields close to unity, near single exponential emission decays, high photostability and complete insensitivity to pH, making them ideal choices as energy transfer donors in FRET and FLIM imaging applications. During this process, it was found that a proper amino-acid choice at only two positions (148 and 65) is sufficient to transform the performances of CFPs: with the help of structural and theoretical investigations, we rationalise here how these two positions critically control the CFP photophysics, in the context of FPs derived from the Aequorea victoria species. Today, these results provide a useful toolbox for upgrading the different CFP donors carried by FRET biosensors. They also trace the route towards the de novo design of FP-based optogenetic devices that will be perfectly tailored to dedicated imaging and sensing applications.

  15. Imaging HIV-1 Tat Trafficking and Interactions by Engineered Green-Fluorescent-Protein Tagging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beltram, Fabio

    2002-03-01

    The direct monitoring of protein function in live cells under physiologically relevant conditions is one of the most powerful and innovative methodologies for proteomics. Efficient florescent probes fully compatible with human-cell expression are the fundamental tools for these studies and their optimization opens the way to resolution at the single-protein level. Biological events involving protein pairs are also directly accessible thanks to tuning of protein-tag spectral properties and production of complementary pairs. Such pairs are characterized by overlapping absorption (for the acceptor tag) and emission (for the donor tag) spectra. By tagging the proteins of interest with acceptor and donor molecules, protein interaction can be directly visualized by FRET, fluorescent resonant energy transfer. In this talk we shall present the design by molecular dynamics calculations and the application of optimized green fluorescent proteins to the study of the human immunodeficiency virus HIV-1 proteomics. In particular trafficking and cellular interactions of HIV-1 transactivator protein Tat in live human cells will be presented. Tat localization and complex internalization pathways of exogenous molecules will be presented thanks to the peculiar optical properties of mutated GFPs. Cellular protein partners and subcellular interaction sites will be identified and directly visualized. The relevance of such results and of advanced spectroscopic and imaging techniques for a new level of understanding of biological processes and its significance for advancement in molecular biology will be underlined. A. Marcello et al., J. Biol. Chem. 276, 39220 (2001). R. Cinelli et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. 79, 3353 (2001).

  16. Structural and dynamic changes associated with beneficial engineered single-amino-acid deletion mutations in enhanced green fluorescent protein

    SciTech Connect

    Arpino, James A. J.; Rizkallah, Pierre J.; Jones, D. Dafydd

    2014-08-01

    The beneficial engineered single-amino-acid deletion variants EGFP{sup D190Δ} and EGFP{sup A227Δ} have been studied. Single-amino-acid deletions are a common part of the natural evolutionary landscape but are rarely sampled during protein engineering owing to limited and prejudiced molecular understanding of mutations that shorten the protein backbone. Single-amino-acid deletion variants of enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) have been identified by directed evolution with the beneficial effect of imparting increased cellular fluorescence. Biophysical characterization revealed that increased functional protein production and not changes to the fluorescence parameters was the mechanism that was likely to be responsible. The structure EGFP{sup D190Δ} containing a deletion within a loop revealed propagated changes only after the deleted residue. The structure of EGFP{sup A227Δ} revealed that a ‘flipping’ mechanism was used to adjust for residue deletion at the end of a β-strand, with amino acids C-terminal to the deletion site repositioning to take the place of the deleted amino acid. In both variants new networks of short-range and long-range interactions are generated while maintaining the integrity of the hydrophobic core. Both deletion variants also displayed significant local and long-range changes in dynamics, as evident by changes in B factors compared with EGFP. Rather than being detrimental, deletion mutations can introduce beneficial structural effects through altering core protein properties, folding and dynamics, as well as function.

  17. Far-red light photoactivatable near-infrared fluorescent proteins engineered from a bacterial phytochrome

    PubMed Central

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; Subach, Fedor V.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2013-01-01

    Ability to modulate fluorescence of optical probes can be used to enhance signal-to-noise ratio for imaging within highly autofluorescent environments, such as intact tissues and living organisms. Here we report two phytochrome-based photoactivatable near-infrared fluorescent proteins, named PAiRFP1 and PAiRFP2. PAiRFPs utilize heme-derived biliverdin, ubiquitous in mammalian tissues, as the chromophore. Initially weakly fluorescent PAiRFPs undergo photoconversion into a highly fluorescent state with excitation/emission at 690 nm/717 nm following a brief irradiation with far-red light. After photoactivation, PAiRFPs slowly revert back to initial state, enabling multiple photoactivation-relaxation cycles. Low-temperature optical spectroscopy reveals several intermediates involved in PAiRFP photocycles, which all differ from that of the bacteriophytochrome precursor. PAiRFPs can be photoactivated in a spatially selective manner in mouse tissues, and optical modulation of their fluorescence allows for substantial contrast enhancement, making PAiRFPs advantageous over permanently fluorescent probes for in vivo imaging conditions of high autofluorescence and low signal levels. PMID:23842578

  18. Highly thermostable fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Bradbury, Andrew M.; Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Kiss, Csaba

    2011-03-22

    Thermostable fluorescent proteins (TSFPs), methods for generating these and other stability-enhanced proteins, polynucleotides encoding such proteins, and assays and method for using the TSFPs and TSFP-encoding nucleic acid molecules are provided. The TSFPs of the invention show extremely enhanced levels of stability and thermotolerance. In one case, for example, a TSFP of the invention is so stable it can be heated to 99.degree. C. for short periods of time without denaturing, and retains 85% of its fluorescence when heated to 80.degree. C. for several minutes. The invention also provides a method for generating stability-enhanced variants of a protein, including but not limited to fluorescent proteins.

  19. Highly thermostable fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Bradbury, Andrew M.; Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Kiss, Csaba

    2012-05-01

    Thermostable fluorescent proteins (TSFPs), methods for generating these and other stability-enhanced proteins, polynucleotides encoding such proteins, and assays and method for using the TSFPs and TSFP-encoding nucleic acid molecules are provided. The TSFPs of the invention show extremely enhanced levels of stability and thermotolerance. In one case, for example, a TSFP of the invention is so stable it can be heated to 99.degree. C. for short periods of time without denaturing, and retains 85% of its fluorescence when heated to 80.degree. C. for several minutes. The invention also provides a method for generating stability-enhanced variants of a protein, including but not limited to fluorescent proteins.

  20. Highly thermostable fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Bradbury, Andrew M.; Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Kiss, Csaba

    2011-11-29

    Thermostable fluorescent proteins (TSFPs), methods for generating these and other stability-enhanced proteins, polynucleotides encoding such proteins, and assays and method for using the TSFPs and TSFP-encoding nucleic acid molecules are provided. The TSFPs of the invention show extremely enhanced levels of stability and thermotolerance. In one case, for example, a TSFP of the invention is so stable it can be heated to 99.degree. C. for short periods of time without denaturing, and retains 85% of its fluorescence when heated to 80.degree. C. for several minutes. The invention also provides a method for generating stability-enhanced variants of a protein, including but not limited to fluorescent proteins.

  1. Field Longevity of a Fluorescent Protein Marker in an Engineered Strain of the Pink Bollworm, Pectinophora gossypiella (Saunders)

    PubMed Central

    Claus, John; Tang, Guolei; Phillips, Caroline E.; Young, Robin; Zink, Richard T.; Alphey, Luke

    2012-01-01

    The cotton pest, pink bollworm (Pectinophora gossypiella (Saunders)), is a significant pest in most cotton-growing areas around the world. In southwestern USA and northern Mexico, pink bollworm is the target of the sterile insect technique (SIT), which relies on the mass-release of sterile pink bollworm adults to over-flood the wild population and thereby reduce it over time. Sterile moths reared for release are currently marked with a dye provided in their larval diet. There are concerns, however, that this marker fails from time to time, leading to sterile moths being misidentified in monitoring traps as wild moths. This can lead to expensive reactionary releases of sterile moths. We have developed a genetically marked strain that is engineered to express a fluorescent protein, DsRed2, which is easily screened under a specialised microscope. In order to test this marker under field conditions, we placed wild-type and genetically marked moths on traps and placed them in field cages. The moths were then screened, in a double-blind fashion, for DsRed2 fluorescence at regular intervals to determine marker reliability over time. The marker was shown to be robust in very high temperatures and generally proved reliable for a week or longer. More importantly, genotyping of moths on traps by PCR screening of the moths was 100% correct. Our findings indicate that this strain - and fluorescent protein markers in general - could make a valuable contribution to SIT. PMID:22693645

  2. Exploring the folding pathway of green fluorescent protein through disulfide engineering

    PubMed Central

    Pitman, Derek J; Banerjee, Shounak; Macari, Stephen J; Castaldi, Christopher A; Crone, Donna E; Bystroff, Christopher

    2015-01-01

    We have introduced two disulfide crosslinks into the loop regions on opposite ends of the beta barrel in superfolder green fluorescent protein (GFP) in order to better understand the nature of its folding pathway. When the disulfide on the side opposite the N/C-termini is formed, folding is 2× faster, unfolding is 2000× slower, and the protein is stabilized by 16 kJ/mol. But when the disulfide bond on the side of the termini is formed we see little change in the kinetics and stability. The stabilization upon combining the two crosslinks is approximately additive. When the kinetic effects are broken down into multiple phases, we observe Hammond behavior in the upward shift of the kinetic m-value of unfolding. We use these results in conjunction with structural analysis to assign folding intermediates to two parallel folding pathways. The data are consistent with a view that the two fastest transition states of folding are "barrel closing" steps. The slower of the two phases passes through an intermediate with the barrel opening occurring between strands 7 and 8, while the faster phase opens between 9 and 4. We conclude that disulfide crosslink-induced perturbations in kinetics are useful for mapping the protein folding pathway. PMID:25516354

  3. Fluorescent Protein Biosensors Applied to Microphysiological Systems

    PubMed Central

    Senutovitch, Nina; Vernetti, Lawrence; Boltz, Robert; DeBiasio, Richard; Gough, Albert; Taylor, D. Lansing

    2015-01-01

    This mini-review discusses the evolution of fluorescence as a tool to study living cells and tissues in vitro and the present role of fluorescent protein biosensors (FPBs) in microphysiological systems (MPS). FPBs allow the measurement of temporal and spatial dynamics of targeted cellular events involved in normal and perturbed cellular assay systems and microphysiological systems in real-time. FPBs evolved from fluorescent analog cytochemistry (FAC) that permitted the measurement of the dynamics of purified proteins covalently labeled with environmentally insensitive fluorescent dyes and then incorporated into living cells, as well as a large list of diffusible fluorescent probes engineered to measure environmental changes in living cells. In parallel, a wide range of fluorescence microscopy methods were developed to measure the chemical and molecular activities of the labeled cells, including ratio imaging, fluorescence lifetime, total internal reflection, 3D imaging, including super-resolution, as well as high content screening (HCS). FPBs evolved from FAC by combining environmentally sensitive fluorescent dyes with proteins in order to monitor specific physiological events such as post-translational modifications, production of metabolites, changes in various ion concentrations and the dynamic interaction of proteins with defined macromolecules in time and space within cells. Original FPBs involved the engineering of fluorescent dyes to sense specific activities when covalently attached to particular domains of the targeted protein. The subsequent development of fluorescent proteins (FPs), such as the green fluorescent protein (GFP), dramatically accelerated the adoption of studying living cells, since the genetic “labeling” of proteins became a relatively simple method that permitted the analysis of temporal-spatial dynamics of a wide range of proteins. Investigators subsequently engineered the fluorescence properties of the FPs for environmental

  4. Engineering ESPT pathways based on structural analysis of LSSmKate red fluorescent proteins with large Stokes shift

    PubMed Central

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; Malashkevich, Vladimir N.; Almo, Steven C.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2010-01-01

    LSSmKate1 and LSSmKate2 are monomeric red fluorescent proteins (RFPs) with large Stokes shifts (LSSs) which allows for efficient separation of absorbance and emission maxima, as well as for excitation with conventional two-photon laser sources. These LSSmKates differ by a single amino acid substitution at position 160 and exhibit absorbance maxima around 460 nm, corresponding to a neutral DsRed-like chromophore. However, excitation at 460 nm leads to fluorescence emission above 600 nm. Structures of LSSmKate1 and LSSmKate2, determined at resolutions of 2.0 Å and 1.5 Å, respectively, revealed that the predominant DsRed-chromophore configurations are cis for LSSmKate1 but trans for LSSmKate2. Crystallographic and mutagenesis analyses, as well as isotope and temperature dependences suggest that an excited state proton transfer (ESPT) is responsible for the LSSs observed in LSSmKates. Hydrogen bonding between the chromophore hydroxyl and Glu160 in LSSmKate1 and a proton relay involving the chromophore tyrosine hydroxyl, Ser158 and the Asp160 carboxylate in LSSmKate2 represent the putative ESPT pathways. Comparisons with mKeima LSS RFP suggest that similar proton relays could be engineered in other FPs. Accordingly, we mutated positions 158 and 160 in several conventional red-shifted FPs, including mNeptune, mCherry, mStrawberry, mOrange and mKO, and the resulting FP variants exhibited LSS fluorescence emission in a wide range of wavelengths from 560 to 640 nm. These data suggest that different chromophores formed by distinct tripeptides in different environments can be rationally modified to yield RFPs with novel photochemical properties. PMID:20681709

  5. Emerging fluorescent protein technologies.

    PubMed

    Enterina, Jhon Ralph; Wu, Lanshi; Campbell, Robert E

    2015-08-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs), such as the Aequorea jellyfish green FP (GFP), are firmly established as fundamental tools that enable a wide variety of biological studies. Specifically, FPs can serve as versatile genetically encoded markers for tracking proteins, organelles, or whole cells, and as the basis for construction of biosensors that can be used to visualize a growing array of biochemical events in cells and tissues. In this review we will focus on emerging applications of FPs that represent unprecedented new directions for the field. These emerging applications include new strategies for using FPs in biosensing applications, and innovative ways of using FPs to manipulate protein function or gene expression. PMID:26043278

  6. Green fluorescent protein: A perspective

    PubMed Central

    Remington, S James

    2011-01-01

    A brief personal perspective is provided for green fluorescent protein (GFP), covering the period 1994–2011. The topics discussed are primarily those in which my research group has made a contribution and include structure and function of the GFP polypeptide, the mechanism of fluorescence emission, excited state protein transfer, the design of ratiometric fluorescent protein biosensors and an overview of the fluorescent proteins derived from coral reef animals. Structure-function relationships in photoswitchable fluorescent proteins and nonfluorescent chromoproteins are also briefly covered. PMID:21714025

  7. Visualization of feline calicivirus replication in real-time with recombinant viruses engineered to express fluorescent reporter proteins.

    PubMed

    Abente, Eugenio J; Sosnovtsev, Stanislav V; Bok, Karin; Green, Kim Y

    2010-04-25

    Caliciviruses are non-enveloped, icosahedral viruses with a single-stranded, positive sense RNA genome. Transposon-mediated insertional mutagenesis was used to insert a transprimer sequence into random sites of an infectious full-length cDNA clone of the feline calicivirus (FCV) genome. A site in the LC gene (encoding the capsid leader protein) of the FCV genome was identified that could tolerate foreign insertions, and two viable recombinant FCV variants expressing LC fused either to AcGFP, or DsRedFP were recovered. The effects of the insertions on LC processing, RNA replication, and stability of the viral genome were analyzed, and the progression of a calicivirus single infection and co-infection were captured by real-time imaging fluorescent microscopy. The ability to engineer viable recombinant caliciviruses expressing foreign markers enables new approaches to investigate virus and host cell interactions, as well as studies of viral recombination, one of the driving forces of calicivirus evolution. PMID:20137802

  8. A Fluorogenic Red Fluorescent Protein Heterodimer

    PubMed Central

    Alford, Spencer C.; Abdelfattah, Ahmed S.; Ding, Yidan; Campbell, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY The expanding repertoire of genetically encoded biosensors constructed from variants of Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein (GFP) enable the imaging of a variety of intracellular biochemical processes. To facilitate the imaging of multiple biosensors in a single cell, we undertook the development of a dimerization-dependent red fluorescent protein (ddRFP) that provides an alternative strategy for biosensor construction. An extensive process of rational engineering and directed protein evolution led to the discovery of a ddRFP with a Kd of 33 μM and a 10-fold increase in fluorescence upon heterodimer formation. We demonstrate that the dimerization-dependent fluorescence of ddRFP can be used for detection of a protein-protein interaction in vitro, imaging of the reversible Ca2+-dependent association of calmodulin and M13 in live cells, and imaging of caspase-3 activity during apoptosis. PMID:22444590

  9. Fluorescence lifetime imaging of coral fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Cox, Guy; Matz, Mikhail; Salih, Anya

    2007-03-01

    Corals, like many other coelenterates, contain fluorescent pigments that show considerable homology with the well known green fluorescent protein of the jellyfish Aequoria. In corals, unlike jellyfish, multiple proteins are present and the range of excitations and emissions suggest the possibility of energy transfer. The occurrence of Förster resonant energy transfer (FRET) between fluorescent proteins in corals has already been reported and time-resolved spectra have shown the effect on fluorescent lifetime, but without any spatial resolution. Lifetime confocal microscopy offers lower time resolution but excellent spatial resolution. Lifetimes of the isolated A. millepora pigments amilFP490, amilFP504, and amilFP593 (names indicate emission peaks) were 2.8, 2.9, and 2.9 ns, respectively. In the coral sample, imaging the entire emission spectrum from 420 nm, the mean lifetime was reduced to 1.5 ns, implying that FRET was occurring. Looking just at the fluorescence from FRET donors the lifetime was even shorter, at 1.3 ns, supporting this interpretation. In contrast, no reduction in lifetime is seen in the coral Euphyllia ancora, where the pigment distribution also suggests that the pigments are unlikely to be involved in photoprotection. This study set out to determine the extent of FRET between pigments in two corals, Acropora millepora and Euphyllia, ancora which differ in the arrangement of their pigments and hence possibly in pigment function. PMID:17279514

  10. Protein- protein interaction detection system using fluorescent protein microdomains

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2010-02-23

    The invention provides a protein labeling and interaction detection system based on engineered fragments of fluorescent and chromophoric proteins that require fused interacting polypeptides to drive the association of the fragments, and further are soluble and stable, and do not change the solubility of polypeptides to which they are fused. In one embodiment, a test protein X is fused to a sixteen amino acid fragment of GFP (.beta.-strand 10, amino acids 198-214), engineered to not perturb fusion protein solubility. A second test protein Y is fused to a sixteen amino acid fragment of GFP (.beta.-strand 11, amino acids 215-230), engineered to not perturb fusion protein solubility. When X and Y interact, they bring the GFP strands into proximity, and are detected by complementation with a third GFP fragment consisting of GFP amino acids 1-198 (strands 1-9). When GFP strands 10 and 11 are held together by interaction of protein X and Y, they spontaneous association with GFP strands 1-9, resulting in structural complementation, folding, and concomitant GFP fluorescence.

  11. Fixation-resistant photoactivatable fluorescent proteins for CLEM.

    PubMed

    Paez-Segala, Maria G; Sun, Mei G; Shtengel, Gleb; Viswanathan, Sarada; Baird, Michelle A; Macklin, John J; Patel, Ronak; Allen, John R; Howe, Elizabeth S; Piszczek, Grzegorz; Hess, Harald F; Davidson, Michael W; Wang, Yalin; Looger, Loren L

    2015-03-01

    Fluorescent proteins facilitate a variety of imaging paradigms in live and fixed samples. However, they lose their fluorescence after heavy fixation, hindering applications such as correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM). Here we report engineered variants of the photoconvertible Eos fluorescent protein that fluoresce and photoconvert normally in heavily fixed (0.5-1% OsO4), plastic resin-embedded samples, enabling correlative super-resolution fluorescence imaging and high-quality electron microscopy. PMID:25581799

  12. On the origin of fluorescence in bacteriophytochrome infrared fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    Samma, Alex A.; Johnson, Chelsea K.; Song, Shuang; Alvarez, Samuel

    2010-01-01

    Tsien (Science, 2009, 324, 804-807) has recently reported the creation of the first infrared fluorescent protein (IFP). It was engineered from bacterial phytochrome by removing the PHY and histidine kinase-related domains, by optimizing the protein to prevent dimerization and by limiting the biliverdins conformational freedom, especially around its D ring. We have used database analyses and molecular dynamics simulations with freely rotating chromophoric dihedrals in order to model the dihedral freedom available to the biliverdin D ring in the excited state; to show that the tetrapyrrole ligands in phytochromes are flexible and can adopt many conformations, however their conformational space is limited/defined by the chemospatial characteristics of the protein cavity. Our simulations confirm that the reduced accessibility to conformations geared to an excited state proton transfer may be responsible for the fluorescence in IFP, just as has been suggested by Kennis (PNAS, 2010, 107, 9170-9175) for fluorescent bacteriophytochrome from Rhodopseudomonas palustris. PMID:21047084

  13. Green fluorescent protein glows gold.

    PubMed

    Miyawaki, Atsushi

    2008-12-12

    The awarding of this year's Nobel Prize in Chemistry to Osamu Shimomura, Martin Chalfie, and Roger Tsien for their discovery and development of green fluorescent protein earns this humble jellyfish protein a place of honor in the biology research hall of fame. PMID:19070562

  14. New component in protein fluorescence

    SciTech Connect

    Longworth, J W

    1980-01-01

    Tryptophyl residues in proteins absorb at longer wavelengths than tyrosyl residues and thus the tryptophyl fluorescence can be selectively excited. In addition, tryptophyl residues have a fluorescence maximum at much longer wavelengths than tyrosyl residues and are the predominant source of fluorescence at the long wavelength region. The contribution of tyrosyl fluorescence to protein fluorescence can be determined by exploiting these spectral properties. The tyrosyl fluorescence of native human serum albumin is different than the fluorescence of N-acetyl-L-tyrosinamide. The spectral maximum is at longer wavelength and the spectral width is greater. This is caused by a second component with a maximum at 345 nm. The excitation spectrum of the 345 nm component is similar to the excitation spectrum of the normal 304 nm tyrosyl component. The 345 nm is largely absent from denatured serum albumin. An excited singlet state protolysis from the buried tyrosyl residues explains the appearance of the 345 nm component. A possible acceptor base is an amino group of buried lysyl residue.

  15. Lasing from fluorescent protein crystals.

    PubMed

    Oh, Heon Jeong; Gather, Malte C; Song, Ji-Joon; Yun, Seok Hyun

    2014-12-15

    We investigated fluorescent protein crystals for potential photonic applications, for the first time to our knowledge. Rod-shaped crystals of enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) were synthesized, with diameters of 0.5-2 μm and lengths of 100-200 μm. The crystals exhibit minimal light scattering due to their ordered structure and generate substantially higher fluorescence intensity than EGFP or dye molecules in solutions. The magnitude of concentration quenching in EGFP crystals was measured to be about 7-10 dB. Upon optical pumping at 485 nm, individual EGFP crystals located between dichroic mirrors generated laser emission with a single-mode spectral line at 513 nm. Our results demonstrate the potential of protein crystals as novel optical elements for self-assembled, micro- or nano-lasers and amplifiers in aqueous environment. PMID:25607090

  16. Going Viral with Fluorescent Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Costantini, Lindsey M.

    2015-01-01

    Many longstanding questions about dynamics of virus-cell interactions can be answered by combining fluorescence imaging techniques with fluorescent protein (FP) tagging strategies. Successfully creating a FP fusion with a cellular or viral protein of interest first requires selecting the appropriate FP. However, while viral architecture and cellular localization often dictate the suitability of a FP, a FP's chemical and physical properties must also be considered. Here, we discuss the challenges of and offer suggestions for identifying the optimal FPs for studying the cell biology of viruses. PMID:26202231

  17. Quantitative assessment of fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Cranfill, Paula J; Sell, Brittney R; Baird, Michelle A; Allen, John R; Lavagnino, Zeno; de Gruiter, H Martijn; Kremers, Gert-Jan; Davidson, Michael W; Ustione, Alessandro; Piston, David W

    2016-07-01

    The advent of fluorescent proteins (FPs) for genetic labeling of molecules and cells has revolutionized fluorescence microscopy. Genetic manipulations have created a vast array of bright and stable FPs spanning blue to red spectral regions. Common to autofluorescent FPs is their tight β-barrel structure, which provides the rigidity and chemical environment needed for effectual fluorescence. Despite the common structure, each FP has unique properties. Thus, there is no single 'best' FP for every circumstance, and each FP has advantages and disadvantages. To guide decisions about which FP is right for a given application, we have quantitatively characterized the brightness, photostability, pH stability and monomeric properties of more than 40 FPs to enable straightforward and direct comparison between them. We focus on popular and/or top-performing FPs in each spectral region. PMID:27240257

  18. Fluorescent Protein Approaches in Alpha Herpesvirus Research.

    PubMed

    Hogue, Ian B; Bosse, Jens B; Engel, Esteban A; Scherer, Julian; Hu, Jiun-Ruey; Del Rio, Tony; Enquist, Lynn W

    2015-11-01

    In the nearly two decades since the popularization of green fluorescent protein (GFP), fluorescent protein-based methodologies have revolutionized molecular and cell biology, allowing us to literally see biological processes as never before. Naturally, this revolution has extended to virology in general, and to the study of alpha herpesviruses in particular. In this review, we provide a compendium of reported fluorescent protein fusions to herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) and pseudorabies virus (PRV) structural proteins, discuss the underappreciated challenges of fluorescent protein-based approaches in the context of a replicating virus, and describe general strategies and best practices for creating new fluorescent fusions. We compare fluorescent protein methods to alternative approaches, and review two instructive examples of the caveats associated with fluorescent protein fusions, including describing several improved fluorescent capsid fusions in PRV. Finally, we present our future perspectives on the types of powerful experiments these tools now offer. PMID:26610544

  19. Fluorescent Protein Approaches in Alpha Herpesvirus Research

    PubMed Central

    Hogue, Ian B.; Bosse, Jens B.; Engel, Esteban A.; Scherer, Julian; Hu, Jiun-Ruey; del Rio, Tony; Enquist, Lynn W.

    2015-01-01

    In the nearly two decades since the popularization of green fluorescent protein (GFP), fluorescent protein-based methodologies have revolutionized molecular and cell biology, allowing us to literally see biological processes as never before. Naturally, this revolution has extended to virology in general, and to the study of alpha herpesviruses in particular. In this review, we provide a compendium of reported fluorescent protein fusions to herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) and pseudorabies virus (PRV) structural proteins, discuss the underappreciated challenges of fluorescent protein-based approaches in the context of a replicating virus, and describe general strategies and best practices for creating new fluorescent fusions. We compare fluorescent protein methods to alternative approaches, and review two instructive examples of the caveats associated with fluorescent protein fusions, including describing several improved fluorescent capsid fusions in PRV. Finally, we present our future perspectives on the types of powerful experiments these tools now offer. PMID:26610544

  20. A Practical Teaching Course in Directed Protein Evolution Using the Green Fluorescent Protein as a Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruller, Roberto; Silva-Rocha, Rafael; Silva, Artur; Schneider, Maria Paula Cruz; Ward, Richard John

    2011-01-01

    Protein engineering is a powerful tool, which correlates protein structure with specific functions, both in applied biotechnology and in basic research. Here, we present a practical teaching course for engineering the green fluorescent protein (GFP) from "Aequorea victoria" by a random mutagenesis strategy using error-prone polymerase chain…

  1. Fluorescent sensors based on bacterial fusion proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prats Mateu, Batirtze; Kainz, Birgit; Pum, Dietmar; Sleytr, Uwe B.; Toca-Herrera, José L.

    2014-06-01

    Fluorescence proteins are widely used as markers for biomedical and technological purposes. Therefore, the aim of this project was to create a fluorescent sensor, based in the green and cyan fluorescent protein, using bacterial S-layers proteins as scaffold for the fluorescent tag. We report the cloning, expression and purification of three S-layer fluorescent proteins: SgsE-EGFP, SgsE-ECFP and SgsE-13aa-ECFP, this last containing a 13-amino acid rigid linker. The pH dependence of the fluorescence intensity of the S-layer fusion proteins, monitored by fluorescence spectroscopy, showed that the ECFP tag was more stable than EGFP. Furthermore, the fluorescent fusion proteins were reassembled on silica particles modified with cationic and anionic polyelectrolytes. Zeta potential measurements confirmed the particle coatings and indicated their colloidal stability. Flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy showed that the fluorescence of the fusion proteins was pH dependent and sensitive to the underlying polyelectrolyte coating. This might suggest that the fluorescent tag is not completely exposed to the bulk media as an independent moiety. Finally, it was found out that viscosity enhanced the fluorescence intensity of the three fluorescent S-layer proteins.

  2. Fluorescence lifetime distributions in proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Alcala, J. R.; Gratton, E.; Prendergast, F. G.

    1987-01-01

    The fluorescence lifetime value of tryptophan residues varies by more than a factor of 100 in different proteins and is determined by several factors, which include solvent exposure and interactions with other elements of the protein matrix. Because of the variety of different elements that can alter the lifetime value and the sensitivity to the particular environment of the tryptophan residue, it is likely that non-unique lifetime values result in protein systems. The emission decay of most proteins can be satisfactorily described only using several exponential components. Here it is proposed that continuous lifetime distributions can better represent the observed decay. An approach based on protein dynamics is presented, which provides fluorescence lifetime distribution functions for single tryptophan residue proteins. First, lifetime distributions for proteins interconverting between two conformations, each characterized by a different lifetime value, are derived. The evolution of the lifetime values as a function of the interconversion rate is studied. In this case lifetime distributions can be obtained from a distribution of rates of interconversion between the two conformations. Second, the existence of a continuum of energy substates within a given conformation was considered. The occupation of a particular energy substate at a given temperature is proportional to the Boltzmann factor. The density of energy states of the potential well depends upon the width of the well, which determines the degree of freedom the residue can move in the conformational space. Lifetime distributions can be obtained by association of each energy substate with a different lifetime value and assuming that the average conformation can change as the energy of the substate is increased. Finally, lifetime distributions for proteins interconverting between two conformations, each characterized by a quasi-continuum of energy substates, are presented. The origin of negative components

  3. Real-time PCR quantification of a green fluorescent protein-labeled, genetically engineered Pseudomonas putida strain during 2-chlorobenzoate degradation in soil.

    PubMed

    Wang, Gejiao; Gentry, Terry J; Grass, Gregor; Josephson, Karen; Rensing, Christopher; Pepper, Ian L

    2004-04-15

    The potential for real-time PCR (RTm-PCR) detection of the genetically engineered strain Pseudomonas putida GN2 was studied during 2-chlorobenzoate (2-CB) degradation in three different soils. The strain contained the constructed plasmid pGN2 which encoded genes for 2-CB oxidation (cbdA) and the green fluorescent protein (gfp). P. putida GN2 numbers were assessed by plating onto 2-CB minimal media and also by RTm-PCR detection of cbdA and gfp. Addition of P. putida GN2 decreased the time required to degrade 2-CB in all tested soils by more than 7 days. The RTm-PCR estimations of P. putida GN2 numbers strongly correlated with those obtained from plate count methods during active 2-CB degradation. However, after 2-CB degradation in the soils had ceased, RTm-PCR estimations of cbdA and gfp genes were generally one order of magnitude lower than those from plate counts. These results indicate the potential for RTm-PCR to rapidly determine degrader numbers in soil following bioaugmentation but also the need to exercise caution when attempting to determine cell numbers of degraders from the RTm-PCR quantification of plasmid encoded genes after substrate is depleted. PMID:15063501

  4. Molecular spies for bioimaging--fluorescent protein-based probes.

    PubMed

    Miyawaki, Atsushi; Niino, Yusuke

    2015-05-21

    Convergent advances in optical imaging and genetic engineering have fueled the development of new technologies for biological visualization. Those technologies include genetically encoded indicators based on fluorescent proteins (FPs) for imaging ions, molecules, and enzymatic activities "to spy on cells," as phrased by Roger Tsien, by sneaking into specific tissues, cell types, or subcellular compartments, and reporting on specific intracellular activities. Here we review the current range of unimolecular indicators whose working principle is the conversion of a protein conformational change into a fluorescence signal. Many of the indicators have been developed from fluorescence resonance energy transfer- and single-FP-based approaches. PMID:26000848

  5. Advanced Fluorescence Protein-Based Synapse-Detectors

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Hojin; Oh, Won Chan; Seong, Jihye; Kim, Jinhyun

    2016-01-01

    The complex information-processing capabilities of the central nervous system emerge from intricate patterns of synaptic input-output relationships among various neuronal circuit components. Understanding these capabilities thus requires a precise description of the individual synapses that comprise neural networks. Recent advances in fluorescent protein engineering, along with developments in light-favoring tissue clearing and optical imaging techniques, have rendered light microscopy (LM) a potent candidate for large-scale analyses of synapses, their properties, and their connectivity. Optically imaging newly engineered fluorescent proteins (FPs) tagged to synaptic proteins or microstructures enables the efficient, fine-resolution illumination of synaptic anatomy and function in large neural circuits. Here we review the latest progress in fluorescent protein-based molecular tools for imaging individual synapses and synaptic connectivity. We also identify associated technologies in gene delivery, tissue processing, and computational image analysis that will play a crucial role in bridging the gap between synapse- and system-level neuroscience. PMID:27445785

  6. Advanced Fluorescence Protein-Based Synapse-Detectors.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hojin; Oh, Won Chan; Seong, Jihye; Kim, Jinhyun

    2016-01-01

    The complex information-processing capabilities of the central nervous system emerge from intricate patterns of synaptic input-output relationships among various neuronal circuit components. Understanding these capabilities thus requires a precise description of the individual synapses that comprise neural networks. Recent advances in fluorescent protein engineering, along with developments in light-favoring tissue clearing and optical imaging techniques, have rendered light microscopy (LM) a potent candidate for large-scale analyses of synapses, their properties, and their connectivity. Optically imaging newly engineered fluorescent proteins (FPs) tagged to synaptic proteins or microstructures enables the efficient, fine-resolution illumination of synaptic anatomy and function in large neural circuits. Here we review the latest progress in fluorescent protein-based molecular tools for imaging individual synapses and synaptic connectivity. We also identify associated technologies in gene delivery, tissue processing, and computational image analysis that will play a crucial role in bridging the gap between synapse- and system-level neuroscience. PMID:27445785

  7. Fluorescence dynamics of green fluorescent protein in AOT reversed micelles.

    PubMed

    Uskova, M A; Borst, J W; Hink, M A; van Hoek, A; Schots, A; Klyachko, N L; Visser, A J

    2000-09-15

    We have used the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) to investigate the properties of surfactant-entrapped water pools in organic solvents (reversed micelles) with steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence methods. The surfactant used was sodium bis(2-ethylhexyl)sulfosuccinate (AOT) and the organic solvents were isooctane and (the more viscous) dodecane, respectively. The water content of the water pools could be controlled through the parameter w0, which is the water-to-surfactant molar ratio. With steady-state fluorescence, it was observed that subtle fluorescence changes could be noted in reversed micelles of different water contents. EGFP can be used as a pH-indicator of the water droplets in reversed micelles. Time-resolved fluorescence methods also revealed subtle changes in fluorescence decay times when the results in bulk water were compared with those in reversed micelles. The average fluorescence lifetimes of EGFP scaled with the relative fluorescence intensities. Time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy of EGFP in aqueous solution and reversed micelles yielded single rotational correlation times. Geometrical considerations could assign the observed correlation times to dehydrated protein at low w0 and internal EGFP rotation within the droplet at the highest w0. PMID:11036971

  8. Engineering therapeutic protein disaggregases.

    PubMed

    Shorter, James

    2016-05-15

    Therapeutic agents are urgently required to cure several common and fatal neurodegenerative disorders caused by protein misfolding and aggregation, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson's disease (PD), and Alzheimer's disease (AD). Protein disaggregases that reverse protein misfolding and restore proteins to native structure, function, and localization could mitigate neurodegeneration by simultaneously reversing 1) any toxic gain of function of the misfolded form and 2) any loss of function due to misfolding. Potentiated variants of Hsp104, a hexameric AAA+ ATPase and protein disaggregase from yeast, have been engineered to robustly disaggregate misfolded proteins connected with ALS (e.g., TDP-43 and FUS) and PD (e.g., α-synuclein). However, Hsp104 has no metazoan homologue. Metazoa possess protein disaggregase systems distinct from Hsp104, including Hsp110, Hsp70, and Hsp40, as well as HtrA1, which might be harnessed to reverse deleterious protein misfolding. Nevertheless, vicissitudes of aging, environment, or genetics conspire to negate these disaggregase systems in neurodegenerative disease. Thus, engineering potentiated human protein disaggregases or isolating small-molecule enhancers of their activity could yield transformative therapeutics for ALS, PD, and AD. PMID:27255695

  9. Engineering therapeutic protein disaggregases

    PubMed Central

    Shorter, James

    2016-01-01

    Therapeutic agents are urgently required to cure several common and fatal neurodegenerative disorders caused by protein misfolding and aggregation, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Protein disaggregases that reverse protein misfolding and restore proteins to native structure, function, and localization could mitigate neurodegeneration by simultaneously reversing 1) any toxic gain of function of the misfolded form and 2) any loss of function due to misfolding. Potentiated variants of Hsp104, a hexameric AAA+ ATPase and protein disaggregase from yeast, have been engineered to robustly disaggregate misfolded proteins connected with ALS (e.g., TDP-43 and FUS) and PD (e.g., α-synuclein). However, Hsp104 has no metazoan homologue. Metazoa possess protein disaggregase systems distinct from Hsp104, including Hsp110, Hsp70, and Hsp40, as well as HtrA1, which might be harnessed to reverse deleterious protein misfolding. Nevertheless, vicissitudes of aging, environment, or genetics conspire to negate these disaggregase systems in neurodegenerative disease. Thus, engineering potentiated human protein disaggregases or isolating small-molecule enhancers of their activity could yield transformative therapeutics for ALS, PD, and AD. PMID:27255695

  10. Photocontrollable Fluorescent Proteins for Superresolution Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Sengupta, Prabuddha; Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2014-01-01

    Superresolution fluorescence microscopy permits the study of biological processes at scales small enough to visualize fine subcellular structures that are unresolvable by traditional diffraction-limited light microscopy. Many superresolution techniques, including those applicable to live cell imaging, utilize genetically encoded photocontrollable fluorescent proteins. The fluorescence of these proteins can be controlled by light of specific wavelengths. In this review, we discuss the biochemical and photophysical properties of photocontrollable fluorescent proteins that are relevant to their use in superresolution microscopy. We then describe the recently developed photoactivatable, photoswitchable, and reversibly photoswitchable fluorescent proteins, and we detail their particular usefulness in single-molecule localization–based and nonlinear ensemble–based superresolution techniques. Finally, we discuss recent applications of photocontrollable proteins in superresolution imaging, as well as how these applications help to clarify properties of intracellular structures and processes that are relevant to cell and developmental biology, neuroscience, cancer biology and biomedicine. PMID:24895855

  11. Fluorescent protein methods: strategies and applications.

    PubMed

    Hutter, Harald

    2012-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins such as the "green fluorescent protein" (GFP) are popular tools in Caenorhabditis elegans, because as genetically encoded markers they are easy to introduce. Furthermore, they can be used in a living animal without the need for extensive sample preparation, because C. elegans is transparent and small enough so that entire animals can be imaged directly. Consequently, fluorescent proteins have emerged as the method of choice to study gene expression in C. elegans and reporter constructs for thousands of genes are currently available. When fused to a protein of interest, fluorescent proteins allow the imaging of its subcellular localization in vivo, offering a powerful alternative to antibody staining techniques. Fluorescent proteins can be employed to label cellular and subcellular structures and as indicators for cell physiological parameters like calcium concentration. Genetic screens relying on fluorescent proteins to visualize anatomical structures and recent progress in automation techniques have tremendously expanded their potential uses. This chapter presents tools and techniques related to the use of fluorescent proteins, discusses their advantages and shortcomings, and provides practical considerations for various applications. PMID:22226521

  12. Engineered Proteins for Bioelectrochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akram, Muhammad Safwan; Rehman, Jawad Ur; Hall, Elizabeth A. H.

    2014-06-01

    It is only in the past two decades that excellent protein engineering tools have begun to meet parallel advances in materials chemistry, nanofabrication, and electronics. This is revealing scenarios from which synthetic enzymes can emerge, which were previously impossible, as well as interfaces with novel electrode materials. That means the control of the protein structure, electron transport pathway, and electrode surface can usher us into a new era of bioelectrochemistry. This article reviews the principle of electron transfer (ET) and considers how its application at the electrode, within the protein, and at a redox group is directing key advances in the understanding of protein structure to create systems that exhibit better efficiency and unique bioelectrochemistry.

  13. Green fluorescent protein nanopolygons as monodisperse supramolecular assemblies of functional proteins with defined valency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Young Eun; Kim, Yu-Na; Kim, Jung A.; Kim, Ho Min; Jung, Yongwon

    2015-05-01

    Supramolecular protein assemblies offer novel nanoscale architectures with molecular precision and unparalleled functional diversity. A key challenge, however, is to create precise nano-assemblies of functional proteins with both defined structures and a controlled number of protein-building blocks. Here we report a series of supramolecular green fluorescent protein oligomers that are assembled in precise polygonal geometries and prepared in a monodisperse population. Green fluorescent protein is engineered to be self-assembled in cells into oligomeric assemblies that are natively separated in a single-protein resolution by surface charge manipulation, affording monodisperse protein (nano)polygons from dimer to decamer. Several functional proteins are multivalently displayed on the oligomers with controlled orientations. Spatial arrangements of protein oligomers and displayed functional proteins are directly visualized by a transmission electron microscope. By employing our functional protein assemblies, we provide experimental insight into multivalent protein-protein interactions and tools to manipulate receptor clustering on live cell surfaces.

  14. Mapping membrane protein structure with fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Taraska, Justin W.

    2012-01-01

    Membrane proteins regulate many cellular processes including signaling cascades, ion transport, membrane fusion, and cell-to-cell communications. Understanding the architecture and conformational fluctuations of these proteins is critical to understanding their regulation and functions. Fluorescence methods including intensity mapping, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, and photo-induced electron transfer, allow for targeted measurements of domains within membrane proteins. These methods can reveal how a protein is structured and how it transitions between different conformational states. Here, I will review recent work done using fluorescence to map the structures of membrane proteins, focusing on how each of these methods can be applied to understanding the dynamic nature of individual membrane proteins and protein complexes. PMID:22445227

  15. Trace fluorescent labeling for protein crystallization

    PubMed Central

    Pusey, Marc; Barcena, Jorge; Morris, Michelle; Singhal, Anuj; Yuan, Qunying; Ng, Joseph

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescence can be a powerful tool to aid in the crystallization of proteins. In the trace-labeling approach, the protein is covalently derivatized with a high-quantum-yield visible-wavelength fluorescent probe. The final probe concentration typically labels ≤0.20% of the protein molecules, which has been shown to not affect the crystal nucleation or diffraction quality. The labeled protein is then used in a plate-screening experiment in the usual manner. As the most densely packed state of the protein is the crystalline form, then crystals show as the brightest objects in the well under fluorescent illumination. A study has been carried out on the effects of trace fluorescent labeling on the screening results obtained compared with nonlabeled protein, and it was found that considering the stochastic nature of the crystal nucleation process the presence of the probe did not affect the outcomes obtained. Other effects are realised when using fluorescence. Crystals are clearly seen even when buried in precipitate. This approach also finds ‘hidden’ leads, in the form of bright spots, with ∼30% of the leads found being optimized to crystals in a single-pass optimization trial. The use of visible fluorescence also enables the selection of colors that bypass interfering substances, and the screening materials do not have to be UV-transparent. PMID:26144224

  16. Hydrogels Constructed from Engineered Proteins.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongbin; Kong, Na; Laver, Bryce; Liu, Junqiu

    2016-02-24

    Due to their various potential biomedical applications, hydrogels based on engineered proteins have attracted considerable interest. Benefitting from significant progress in recombinant DNA technology and protein engineering/design techniques, the field of protein hydrogels has made amazing progress. The latest progress of hydrogels constructed from engineered recombinant proteins are presented, mainly focused on biorecognition-driven physical hydrogels as well as chemically crosslinked hydrogels. The various bio-recognition based physical crosslinking strategies are discussed, as well as chemical crosslinking chemistries used to engineer protein hydrogels, and protein hydrogels' various biomedical applications. The future perspectives of this fast evolving field of biomaterials are also discussed. PMID:26707834

  17. Protein subcellular localization assays using split fluorescent proteins

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2009-09-08

    The invention provides protein subcellular localization assays using split fluorescent protein systems. The assays are conducted in living cells, do not require fixation and washing steps inherent in existing immunostaining and related techniques, and permit rapid, non-invasive, direct visualization of protein localization in living cells. The split fluorescent protein systems used in the practice of the invention generally comprise two or more self-complementing fragments of a fluorescent protein, such as GFP, wherein one or more of the fragments correspond to one or more beta-strand microdomains and are used to "tag" proteins of interest, and a complementary "assay" fragment of the fluorescent protein. Either or both of the fragments may be functionalized with a subcellular targeting sequence enabling it to be expressed in or directed to a particular subcellular compartment (i.e., the nucleus).

  18. Dynamic nuclear protein interactions investigated using fluorescence lifetime and fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegel, Amanda P.; Hays, Nicole M.; Day, Richard N.

    2012-03-01

    The discovery and engineering of novel fluorescent proteins (FPs) from diverse organisms is yielding fluorophores with exceptional characteristics for live-cell imaging. In particular, the development of FPs for Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) microscopy and fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy (FFS) provide important tools for monitoring dynamic protein interactions inside living cells. Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) quantitatively maps changes in the spatial distribution of donor FP lifetimes that result from FRET with acceptor FPs. FFS probes dynamic protein associations through its capacity to monitor localized protein diffusion. Here, we use FRET-FLIM combined with FFS in living cells to investigate changes in protein mobility due to protein-protein interactions involving transcription factors and chromatin modifying proteins that function in anterior pituitary gene regulation. The heterochromatin protein 1 alpha (HP1α) plays a key role in the establishment and maintenance of heterochromatin through its interactions with histone methyltransferases. Recent studies, however, also highlight the importance of HP1α as a positive regulator of active transcription in euchromatin. Intriguingly, we observed that the transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein alpha (C/EBPα) interacts with HP1α in regions of pericentromeric heterochromatin in mouse pituitary cells. These observations prompted us to investigate the relationship between HP1α dynamic interactions in pituitary specific gene regulation.

  19. Trace fluorescent labeling for protein crystallization

    SciTech Connect

    Pusey, Marc Barcena, Jorge; Morris, Michelle; Singhal, Anuj; Yuan, Qunying; Ng, Joseph

    2015-06-27

    The presence of a covalently bound fluorescent probe at a concentration of <0.5% does not affect the outcome of macromolecule crystallization screening experiments. Additionally, the fluorescence can be used to determine new, not immediately apparent, lead crystallization conditions. Fluorescence can be a powerful tool to aid in the crystallization of proteins. In the trace-labeling approach, the protein is covalently derivatized with a high-quantum-yield visible-wavelength fluorescent probe. The final probe concentration typically labels ≤0.20% of the protein molecules, which has been shown to not affect the crystal nucleation or diffraction quality. The labeled protein is then used in a plate-screening experiment in the usual manner. As the most densely packed state of the protein is the crystalline form, then crystals show as the brightest objects in the well under fluorescent illumination. A study has been carried out on the effects of trace fluorescent labeling on the screening results obtained compared with nonlabeled protein, and it was found that considering the stochastic nature of the crystal nucleation process the presence of the probe did not affect the outcomes obtained. Other effects are realised when using fluorescence. Crystals are clearly seen even when buried in precipitate. This approach also finds ‘hidden’ leads, in the form of bright spots, with ∼30% of the leads found being optimized to crystals in a single-pass optimization trial. The use of visible fluorescence also enables the selection of colors that bypass interfering substances, and the screening materials do not have to be UV-transparent.

  20. A naturally monomeric infrared fluorescent protein for protein labeling in vivo.

    PubMed

    Yu, Dan; Baird, Michelle A; Allen, John R; Howe, Elizabeth S; Klassen, Matthew P; Reade, Anna; Makhijani, Kalpana; Song, Yuanquan; Liu, Songmei; Murthy, Zehra; Zhang, Shao-Qing; Weiner, Orion D; Kornberg, Thomas B; Jan, Yuh-Nung; Davidson, Michael W; Shu, Xiaokun

    2015-08-01

    Infrared fluorescent proteins (IFPs) provide an additional color to GFP and its homologs in protein labeling. Drawing on structural analysis of the dimer interface, we identified a bacteriophytochrome in the sequence database that is monomeric in truncated form and engineered it into a naturally monomeric IFP (mIFP). We demonstrate that mIFP correctly labels proteins in live cells, Drosophila and zebrafish. It should be useful in molecular, cell and developmental biology. PMID:26098020

  1. A naturally-monomeric infrared fluorescent protein for protein labeling in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Dan; Baird, Michelle A.; Allen, John R.; Howe, Elizabeth S.; Klassen, Matthew P.; Reade, Anna; Makhijani, Kalpana; Song, Yuanquan; Liu, Songmei; Murthy, Zehra; Zhang, Shao-Qing; Weiner, Orion D.; Kornberg, Thomas B.; Jan, Yuh-Nung; Davidson, Michael W.; Shu, Xiaokun

    2015-01-01

    Infrared fluorescent proteins (IFPs) provide an additional color to GFP and its red homologs in protein labeling. Based on structural analysis of the dimer interface, a monomeric bateriophytochrome is identified from a sequence database, and is engineered into a naturally-monomeric IFP (mIFP). We demonstrate that mIFP correctly labels proteins in live Drosophila and zebrafish requiring no exogenous cofactor, and will thus be useful in molecular, cell and developmental biology. PMID:26098020

  2. Characterization of Flavin-Based Fluorescent Proteins: An Emerging Class of Fluorescent Reporters

    PubMed Central

    Mukherjee, Arnab; Schroeder, Charles M.

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescent reporter proteins based on flavin-binding photosensors were recently developed as a new class of genetically encoded probes characterized by small size and oxygen-independent maturation of fluorescence. Flavin-based fluorescent proteins (FbFPs) address two major limitations associated with existing fluorescent reporters derived from the green fluorescent protein (GFP)–namely, the overall large size and oxygen-dependent maturation of fluorescence of GFP. However, FbFPs are at a nascent stage of development and have been utilized in only a handful of biological studies. Importantly, a full understanding of the performance and properties of FbFPs as a practical set of biological probes is lacking. In this work, we extensively characterize three FbFPs isolated from Pseudomonas putida, Bacillus subtilis, and Arabidopsis thaliana, using in vitro studies to assess probe brightness, oligomeric state, maturation time, fraction of fluorescent holoprotein, pH tolerance, redox sensitivity, and thermal stability. Furthermore, we validate FbFPs as stable molecular tags using in vivo studies by constructing a series of FbFP-based transcriptional constructs to probe promoter activity in Escherichia coli. Overall, FbFPs show key advantages as broad-spectrum biological reporters including robust pH tolerance (4–11), thermal stability (up to 60°C), and rapid maturation of fluorescence (<3 min.). In addition, the FbFP derived from Arabidopsis thaliana (iLOV) emerged as a stable and nonperturbative reporter of promoter activity in Escherichia coli. Our results demonstrate that FbFP-based reporters have the potential to address key limitations associated with the use of GFP, such as pH-sensitive fluorescence and slow kinetics of fluorescence maturation (10–40 minutes for half maximal fluorescence recovery). From this view, FbFPs represent a useful new addition to the fluorescent reporter protein palette, and our results constitute an important framework to enable

  3. Protein biosensing with fluorescent microcapillaries.

    PubMed

    Lane, S; West, P; François, A; Meldrum, A

    2015-02-01

    Capillaries with a high-index fluorescent coating represent a new type of whispering-gallery-mode (WGM) microcavity sensor. By coating silicon quantum dots (Si-QDs) onto the channel wall of a microcapillary, a cylindrical microcavity forms in which the optical confinement arises from the index contrast at the interface between the QD layer and the glass capillary wall. However, the ability to functionalize the QD layer for biosensing applications is an open question, since the layer consists of a mixture of Si-QDs embedded in a glassy SiOx matrix. Here, we employ a polyelectrolyte (PE) multilayer approach to functionalize the microcapillary inner surface and demonstrate the potential of this refractive index sensing platform for label-free biosensing applications, using biotin-neutravidin as a specific interaction model. PMID:25836122

  4. Fixation-resistant photoactivatable fluorescent proteins for correlative light and electron microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Paez Segala, Maria G.; Sun, Mei G.; Shtengel, Gleb; Viswanathan, Sarada; Baird, Michelle A.; Macklin, John J.; Patel, Ronak; Allen, John R.; Howe, Elizabeth S.; Piszczek, Grzegorz; Hess, Harald F.; Davidson, Michael W.; Wang, Yalin; Looger, Loren L.

    2014-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins facilitate a variety of imaging paradigms in live and fixed samples. However, they cease to function following heavy fixation, hindering advanced applications such as correlative light and electron microscopy. Here we report engineered variants of the photoconvertible Eos fluorescent protein that function normally in heavily fixed (0.5–1% OsO4), plastic resin-embedded samples, enabling correlative super-resolution fluorescence imaging and high-quality electron microscopy. PMID:25581799

  5. On the Design of Low-Cost Fluorescent Protein Biosensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tolosa, Leah

    Proteins are the cell’s workhorses as they are involved in essentially all cellular activities. From the birth of a daughter cell until its death during apoptosis, proteins perform various functions as needed. Such versatility can be attributed to the seemingly infinite ways that the amino acids are sequenced in a polypeptide. The polypeptide backbone and each amino acid functional group contribute unique intermolecular interactions that determine the protein’s shape and size. However, more importantly, these interactions determine protein function, that is, its ability to interact with the external environment. For the same reasons, proteins make ideal biorecognition elements for sensors (see below and Fig. 1). Protein enzymes and receptors developed unmatched sensitivity and selectivity for their substrates through millions of years of natural selection. In contrast, chemically synthesized artificial receptors seldom approach the same level of sophistication in ligand selectivity, sensitivity range and ease of production. In addition, there is available to the sensor researcher an ever expanding library of proteins for various ligands important in all manner of application such as disease biomarkers, toxins, contaminants, drugs, etc. Using tools of genetic engineering, researchers can even go beyond known existing wild type proteins by introducing useful functional groups thereby tuning or even altering protein sensitivity and selectivity. This can be done by mutagenesis and directed evolution or by incorporation of unnatural amino acids during translation. Additionally, genes for the protein of interest can be inserted in vectors predesigned with handles for affinity purification or immobilization on a surface. Recombinant proteins can then be produced in large amounts in appropriate cellular hosts with very high reproducibility. In addition, chemical reactions involving the amino acids have become standard protocols. Thus, there are thousands of dyes

  6. Imaging Intracellular Fluorescent Proteins at Nanometer Resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Betzig, Eric; Patterson, George H.; Sougrat, Rachid; Lindwasser, O. Wolf; Olenych, Scott; Bonifacino, Juan S.; Davidson, Michael W.; Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer; Hess, Harald F.

    2006-09-01

    We introduce a method for optically imaging intracellular proteins at nanometer spatial resolution. Numerous sparse subsets of photoactivatable fluorescent protein molecules were activated, localized (to ~2 to 25 nanometers), and then bleached. The aggregate position information from all subsets was then assembled into a superresolution image. We used this method-termed photoactivated localization microscopy-to image specific target proteins in thin sections of lysosomes and mitochondria; in fixed whole cells, we imaged vinculin at focal adhesions, actin within a lamellipodium, and the distribution of the retroviral protein Gag at the plasma membrane.

  7. Modern fluorescent proteins: from chromophore formation to novel intracellular applications

    PubMed Central

    Stepanenko, Olesya V.; Stepanenko, Olga V.; Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Kuznetsova, Irina M.; Turoverov, Konstantin K.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2015-01-01

    The diverse biochemical and photophysical properties of fluorescent proteins (FPs) have enabled the generation of a growing palette of colors, providing unique opportunities for their use in a variety of modern biology applications. Modulation of these FP characteristics is achieved through diversity in both the structure of the chromophore as well as the contacts between the chromophore and the surrounding protein barrel. Here we review our current knowledge of blue, green, and red chromophore formation in permanently emitting FPs, photoactivatable FPs, and fluorescent timers. Progress in understanding the interplay between FP structure and function has allowed the engineering of FPs with many desirable features, and enabled recent advances in microscopy techniques such as super-resolution imaging of single molecules, imaging of protein dynamics, photochromic FRET, deep-tissue imaging, and multicolor two-photon microscopy in live animals. PMID:22054544

  8. Expression-Enhanced Fluorescent Proteins Based on Enhanced Green Fluorescent Protein for Super-resolution Microscopy.

    PubMed

    Duwé, Sam; De Zitter, Elke; Gielen, Vincent; Moeyaert, Benjamien; Vandenberg, Wim; Grotjohann, Tim; Clays, Koen; Jakobs, Stefan; Van Meervelt, Luc; Dedecker, Peter

    2015-10-27

    "Smart fluorophores", such as reversibly switchable fluorescent proteins, are crucial for advanced fluorescence imaging. However, only a limited number of such labels is available, and many display reduced biological performance compared to more classical variants. We present the development of robustly photoswitchable variants of enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), named rsGreens, that display up to 30-fold higher fluorescence in E. coli colonies grown at 37 °C and more than 4-fold higher fluorescence when expressed in HEK293T cells compared to their ancestor protein rsEGFP. This enhancement is not due to an intrinsic increase in the fluorescence brightness of the probes, but rather due to enhanced expression levels that allow many more probe molecules to be functional at any given time. We developed rsGreens displaying a range of photoswitching kinetics and show how these can be used for multimodal diffraction-unlimited fluorescence imaging such as pcSOFI and RESOLFT, achieving a spatial resolution of ∼70 nm. By determining the first ever crystal structures of a negative reversibly switchable FP derived from Aequorea victoria in both the "on"- and "off"-conformation we were able to confirm the presence of a cis-trans isomerization and provide further insights into the mechanisms underlying the photochromism. Our work demonstrates that genetically encoded "smart fluorophores" can be readily optimized for biological performance and provides a practical strategy for developing maturation- and stability-enhanced photochromic fluorescent proteins. PMID:26308583

  9. Incomplete proteasomal degradation of green fluorescent proteins in the context of tandem fluorescent protein timers.

    PubMed

    Khmelinskii, Anton; Meurer, Matthias; Ho, Chi-Ting; Besenbeck, Birgit; Füller, Julia; Lemberg, Marius K; Bukau, Bernd; Mogk, Axel; Knop, Michael

    2016-01-15

    Tandem fluorescent protein timers (tFTs) report on protein age through time-dependent change in color, which can be exploited to study protein turnover and trafficking. Each tFT, composed of two fluorescent proteins (FPs) that differ in maturation kinetics, is suited to follow protein dynamics within a specific time range determined by the maturation rates of both FPs. So far, tFTs have been constructed by combining slower-maturing red fluorescent proteins (redFPs) with the faster-maturing superfolder green fluorescent protein (sfGFP). Toward a comprehensive characterization of tFTs, we compare here tFTs composed of different faster-maturing green fluorescent proteins (greenFPs) while keeping the slower-maturing redFP constant (mCherry). Our results indicate that the greenFP maturation kinetics influences the time range of a tFT. Moreover, we observe that commonly used greenFPs can partially withstand proteasomal degradation due to the stability of the FP fold, which results in accumulation of tFT fragments in the cell. Depending on the order of FPs in the timer, incomplete proteasomal degradation either shifts the time range of the tFT toward slower time scales or precludes its use for measurements of protein turnover. We identify greenFPs that are efficiently degraded by the proteasome and provide simple guidelines for the design of new tFTs. PMID:26609072

  10. Incomplete proteasomal degradation of green fluorescent proteins in the context of tandem fluorescent protein timers

    PubMed Central

    Khmelinskii, Anton; Meurer, Matthias; Ho, Chi-Ting; Besenbeck, Birgit; Füller, Julia; Lemberg, Marius K.; Bukau, Bernd; Mogk, Axel; Knop, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Tandem fluorescent protein timers (tFTs) report on protein age through time-dependent change in color, which can be exploited to study protein turnover and trafficking. Each tFT, composed of two fluorescent proteins (FPs) that differ in maturation kinetics, is suited to follow protein dynamics within a specific time range determined by the maturation rates of both FPs. So far, tFTs have been constructed by combining slower-maturing red fluorescent proteins (redFPs) with the faster-maturing superfolder green fluorescent protein (sfGFP). Toward a comprehensive characterization of tFTs, we compare here tFTs composed of different faster-maturing green fluorescent proteins (greenFPs) while keeping the slower-maturing redFP constant (mCherry). Our results indicate that the greenFP maturation kinetics influences the time range of a tFT. Moreover, we observe that commonly used greenFPs can partially withstand proteasomal degradation due to the stability of the FP fold, which results in accumulation of tFT fragments in the cell. Depending on the order of FPs in the timer, incomplete proteasomal degradation either shifts the time range of the tFT toward slower time scales or precludes its use for measurements of protein turnover. We identify greenFPs that are efficiently degraded by the proteasome and provide simple guidelines for the design of new tFTs. PMID:26609072

  11. Fluorescence Studies of Protein Crystal Nucleation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pusey, Marc L.; Sumida, John

    2000-01-01

    One of the most powerful and versatile methods for studying molecules in solution is fluorescence. Crystallization typically takes place in a concentrated solution environment, whereas fluorescence typically has an upper concentration limit of approximately 1 x 10(exp -5)M, thus intrinsic fluorescence cannot be employed, but a fluorescent probe must be added to a sub population of the molecules. However the fluorescent species cannot interfere with the self-assembly process. This can be achieved with macromolecules, where fluorescent probes can be covalently attached to a sub population of molecules that are subsequently used to track the system as a whole. We are using fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) to study the initial solution phase self-assembly process of tetragonal lysozyme crystal nucleation, using covalent fluorescent derivatives which crystallize in the characteristic P432121 space group. FRET studies are being carried out between cascade blue (CB-lys, donor, Ex 376 nm, Em 420 nm) and lucifer yellow (LY-lys, acceptor, Ex 425 nm, Em 520 nm) asp101 derivatives. The estimated R0 for this probe pair, the distance where 50% of the donor energy is transferred to the acceptor, is approximately 1.2 nm, compared to 2.2 nm between the side chain carboxyls of adjacent asp101's in the crystalline 43 helix. The short CB-lys lifetime (approximately 5 ns), coupled with the large average distances between the molecules ((sup 3) 50 nm) in solution, ensure that any energy transfer observed is not due to random diffusive interactions. Addition of LY-lys to CB-lys results in the appearance of a second, shorter lifetime (approximately 0.2 ns). Results from these and other ongoing studies will be discussed in conjunction with a model for how tetragonal lysozyme crystals nucleate and grow, and the relevance of that model to microgravity protein crystal growth

  12. Intracellular targeting with engineered proteins.

    PubMed

    Miersch, Shane; Sidhu, Sachdev S

    2016-01-01

    If the isolation, production, and clinical use of insulin marked the inception of the age of biologics as therapeutics, the convergence of molecular biology and combinatorial engineering techniques marked its coming of age. The first wave of recombinant protein-based drugs in the 1980s demonstrated emphatically that proteins could be engineered, formulated, and employed for clinical advantage. Yet despite the successes of protein-based drugs such as antibodies, enzymes, and cytokines, the druggable target space for biologics is currently restricted to targets outside the cell. Insofar as estimates place the number of proteins either secreted or with extracellular domains in the range of 8000 to 9000, this represents only one-third of the proteome and circumscribes the pathways that can be targeted for therapeutic intervention. Clearly, a major objective for this field to reach maturity is to access, interrogate, and modulate the majority of proteins found inside the cell. However, owing to the large size, complex architecture, and general cellular impermeability of existing protein-based drugs, this poses a daunting challenge. In recent years, though, advances on the two related fronts of protein engineering and drug delivery are beginning to bring this goal within reach. First, prompted by the restrictions that limit the applicability of antibodies, intense efforts have been applied to identifying and engineering smaller alternative protein scaffolds for the modulation of intracellular targets. In parallel, innovative solutions for delivering proteins to the intracellular space while maintaining their stability and functional activity have begun to yield successes. This review provides an overview of bioactive intrabodies and alternative protein scaffolds amenable to engineering for intracellular targeting and also outlines advances in protein engineering and formulation for delivery of functional proteins to the interior of the cell to achieve therapeutic action

  13. Intracellular targeting with engineered proteins

    PubMed Central

    Miersch, Shane; Sidhu, Sachdev S.

    2016-01-01

    If the isolation, production, and clinical use of insulin marked the inception of the age of biologics as therapeutics, the convergence of molecular biology and combinatorial engineering techniques marked its coming of age. The first wave of recombinant protein-based drugs in the 1980s demonstrated emphatically that proteins could be engineered, formulated, and employed for clinical advantage. Yet despite the successes of protein-based drugs such as antibodies, enzymes, and cytokines, the druggable target space for biologics is currently restricted to targets outside the cell. Insofar as estimates place the number of proteins either secreted or with extracellular domains in the range of 8000 to 9000, this represents only one-third of the proteome and circumscribes the pathways that can be targeted for therapeutic intervention. Clearly, a major objective for this field to reach maturity is to access, interrogate, and modulate the majority of proteins found inside the cell. However, owing to the large size, complex architecture, and general cellular impermeability of existing protein-based drugs, this poses a daunting challenge. In recent years, though, advances on the two related fronts of protein engineering and drug delivery are beginning to bring this goal within reach. First, prompted by the restrictions that limit the applicability of antibodies, intense efforts have been applied to identifying and engineering smaller alternative protein scaffolds for the modulation of intracellular targets. In parallel, innovative solutions for delivering proteins to the intracellular space while maintaining their stability and functional activity have begun to yield successes. This review provides an overview of bioactive intrabodies and alternative protein scaffolds amenable to engineering for intracellular targeting and also outlines advances in protein engineering and formulation for delivery of functional proteins to the interior of the cell to achieve therapeutic action

  14. Recent progress in design of protein-based fluorescent biosensors and their cellular applications.

    PubMed

    Tamura, Tomonori; Hamachi, Itaru

    2014-12-19

    Protein-based fluorescent biosensors have emerged as key bioanalytical tools to visualize and quantify a wide range of biological substances and events in vitro, in cells, and even in vivo. On the basis of the construction method, the protein-based fluorescent biosensors can be principally classified into two classes: (1) genetically encoded fluorescent biosensors harnessing fluorescent proteins (FPs) and (2) semisynthetic biosensors comprised of protein scaffolds and synthetic fluorophores. Recent advances in protein engineering and chemical biology not only allowed the further optimization of conventional biosensors but also facilitated the creation of novel biosensors based on unique strategies. In this review, we survey the recent studies in the development and improvement of protein-based fluorescent biosensors and highlight the successful applications to live cell and in vivo imaging. Furthermore, we provide perspectives on possible future directions of the technique. PMID:25317665

  15. Directed molecular evolution to design advanced red fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    Subach, Fedor V; Piatkevich, Kiryl D; Verkhusha, Vladislav V

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins have become indispensable imaging tools for biomedical research. continuing progress in fluorescence imaging, however, requires probes with additional colors and properties optimized for emerging techniques. Here we summarize strategies for development of red-shifted fluorescent proteins. We discuss possibilities for knowledge-based rational design based on the photochemistry of fluorescent proteins and the position of the chromophore in protein structure. We consider advances in library design by mutagenesis, protein expression systems and instrumentation for high-throughput screening that should yield improved fluorescent proteins for advanced imaging applications. PMID:22127219

  16. High-order fluorescence fluctuation analysis of model protein clusters.

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, A G; Thompson, N L

    1989-01-01

    The technique of high-order fluorescence fluctuation autocorrelation for detecting and characterizing protein oligomers was applied to solutions containing two fluorescent proteins in which the more fluorescent proteins were analogues for clusters of the less fluorescent ones. The results show that the model protein clusters can be detected for average numbers of observed subunits (free monomers plus monomers in oligomers) equal to 10-100 and for relative fluorescent yields that correspond to oligomers as small as trimers. High-order fluorescent fluctuation analysis may therefore be applicable to cell surface receptor clusters in natural or model membranes. PMID:2548201

  17. Protein sensing with engineered protein nanopores*

    PubMed Central

    Mohammad, Mohammad M.; Movileanu, Liviu

    2013-01-01

    The use of nanopores is a powerful new frontier in single-molecule sciences. Nanopores have been used effectively in exploring various biophysical features of small polypeptides and proteins, such as their folding state and structure, ligand interactions, and enzymatic activity. In particular, the α-hemolysin protein pore (αHL) has been used extensively for the detection, characterization and analysis of polypeptides, because this protein nanopore is highly robust, versatile and tractable under various experimental conditions. Inspired by the mechanisms of protein translocation across the outer membrane translocases of mitochondria, we have shown the ability to use nanopore-probe techniques in controlling a single protein using engineered αHL pores. Here, we provide a detailed protocol for the preparation of αHL protein nanopores. Moreover, we demonstrate that placing attractive electrostatic traps is instrumental in tackling single-molecule stochastic sensing of folded proteins. PMID:22528256

  18. Protein design for pathway engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Eriksen, DT; Lian, JZ; Zhao, HM

    2014-02-01

    Design and construction of biochemical pathways has increased the complexity of biosynthetically-produced compounds when compared to single enzyme biocatalysis. However, the coordination of multiple enzymes can introduce a complicated set of obstacles to overcome in order to achieve a high titer and yield of the desired compound. Metabolic engineering has made great strides in developing tools to optimize the flux through a target pathway, but the inherent characteristics of a particular enzyme within the pathway can still limit the productivity. Thus, judicious protein design is critical for metabolic and pathway engineering. This review will describe various strategies and examples of applying protein design to pathway engineering to optimize the flux through the pathway. The proteins can be engineered for altered substrate specificity/selectivity, increased catalytic activity, reduced mass transfer limitations through specific protein localization, and reduced substrate/product inhibition. Protein engineering can also be expanded to design biosensors to enable high through-put screening and to customize cell signaling networks. These strategies have successfully engineered pathways for significantly increased productivity of the desired product or in the production of novel compounds. (C) 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Protein Design for Pathway Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Eriksen, Dawn T.; Lian, Jiazhang; Zhao, Huimin

    2013-01-01

    Design and construction of biochemical pathways has increased the complexity of biosynthetically-produced compounds when compared to single enzyme biocatalysis. However, the coordination of multiple enzymes can introduce a complicated set of obstacles to overcome in order to achieve a high titer and yield of the desired compound. Metabolic engineering has made great strides in developing tools to optimize the flux through a target pathway, but the inherent characteristics of a particular enzyme within the pathway can still limit the productivity. Thus, judicious protein design is critical for metabolic and pathway engineering. This review will describe various strategies and examples of applying protein design to pathway engineering to optimize the flux through the pathway. The proteins can be engineered for altered substrate specificity/selectivity, increased catalytic activity, reduced mass transfer limitations through specific protein localization, and reduced substrate/product inhibition. Protein engineering can also be expanded to design biosensors to enable high through-put screening and to customize cell signaling networks. These strategies have successfully engineered pathways for significantly increased productivity of the desired product or in the production of novel compounds. PMID:23558037

  20. Split green fluorescent protein as a modular binding partner for protein crystallization

    SciTech Connect

    Nguyen, Hau B.; Hung, Li-Wei; Yeates, Todd O.; Terwilliger, Thomas C. Waldo, Geoffrey S.

    2013-12-01

    A strategy using a new split green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a modular binding partner to form stable protein complexes with a target protein is presented. The modular split GFP may open the way to rapidly creating crystallization variants. A modular strategy for protein crystallization using split green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a crystallization partner is demonstrated. Insertion of a hairpin containing GFP β-strands 10 and 11 into a surface loop of a target protein provides two chain crossings between the target and the reconstituted GFP compared with the single connection afforded by terminal GFP fusions. This strategy was tested by inserting this hairpin into a loop of another fluorescent protein, sfCherry. The crystal structure of the sfCherry-GFP(10–11) hairpin in complex with GFP(1–9) was determined at a resolution of 2.6 Å. Analysis of the complex shows that the reconstituted GFP is attached to the target protein (sfCherry) in a structurally ordered way. This work opens the way to rapidly creating crystallization variants by reconstituting a target protein bearing the GFP(10–11) hairpin with a variety of GFP(1–9) mutants engineered for favorable crystallization.

  1. Fluorescence Studies of Protein Crystallization Interactions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pusey, Marc L.; Smith, Lori; Forsythe, Elizabeth

    1999-01-01

    We are investigating protein-protein interactions in under- and over-saturated crystallization solution conditions using fluorescence methods. The use of fluorescence requires fluorescent derivatives where the probe does not markedly affect the crystal packing. A number of chicken egg white lysozyme (CEWL) derivatives have been prepared, with the probes covalently attached to one of two different sites on the protein molecule; the side chain carboxyl of ASP 101, within the active site cleft, and the N-terminal amine. The ASP 101 derivatives crystallize while the N-terminal amine derivatives do not. However, the N-terminal amine is part of the contact region between adjacent 43 helix chains, and blocking this site does would not interfere with formation of these structures in solution. Preliminary FRET data have been obtained at pH 4.6, 0.1M NaAc buffer, at 5 and 7% NaCl, 4 C, using the N-terminal bound pyrene acetic acid (PAA, Ex 340 nm, Em 376 nm) and ASP 101 bound Lucifer Yellow (LY, Ex 425 nm, Em 525 nm) probe combination. The corresponding Csat values are 0.471 and 0.362 mg/ml (approximately 3.3 and approximately 2.5 x 10 (exp 5) M respectively), and all experiments were carried out at approximately Csat or lower total protein concentration. The data at both salt concentrations show a consistent trend of decreasing fluorescence yield of the donor species (PAA) with increasing total protein concentration. This decrease is apparently more pronounced at 7% NaCl, consistent with the expected increased intermolecular interactions at higher salt concentrations (reflected in the lower solubility). The estimated average distance between protein molecules at 5 x 10 (exp 6) M is approximately 70 nm, well beyond the range where any FRET can be expected. The calculated RO, where 50% of the donor energy is transferred to the acceptor, for the PAA-CEWL * LY-CEWL system is 3.28 nm, based upon a PAA-CEWL quantum efficiency of 0.41.

  2. Fluorescent proteins for FRET microscopy: monitoring protein interactions in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Day, Richard N.; Davidson, Michael W.

    2012-01-01

    Summary The discovery and engineering of novel fluorescent proteins (FPs) from diverse organisms is yielding fluorophores with exceptional characteristics for live-cell imaging. In particular, the development of FPs for fluorescence (or Förster) resonance energy transfer (FRET) microscopy is providing important tools for monitoring dynamic protein interactions inside living cells. The increased interest in FRET microscopy has driven the development of many different methods to measure FRET. However, the interpretation of FRET measurements is complicated by several factors including the high fluorescence background, the potential for photoconversion artifacts, and the relatively low dynamic range afforded by this technique. Here, we describe the advantages and disadvantages of four methods commonly used in FRET microscopy. We then discuss the selection of FPs for the different FRET methods, identifying the most useful FP candidates for FRET microscopy. The recent success in expanding the FP color palette offers the opportunity to explore new FRET pairs. PMID:22396229

  3. Versatile protein tagging in cells with split fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Kamiyama, Daichi; Sekine, Sayaka; Barsi-Rhyne, Benjamin; Hu, Jeffrey; Chen, Baohui; Gilbert, Luke A; Ishikawa, Hiroaki; Leonetti, Manuel D; Marshall, Wallace F; Weissman, Jonathan S; Huang, Bo

    2016-01-01

    In addition to the popular method of fluorescent protein fusion, live cell protein imaging has now seen more and more application of epitope tags. The small size of these tags may reduce functional perturbation and enable signal amplification. To address their background issue, we adapt self-complementing split fluorescent proteins as epitope tags for live cell protein labelling. The two tags, GFP11 and sfCherry11 are derived from the eleventh β-strand of super-folder GFP and sfCherry, respectively. The small size of FP11-tags enables a cost-effective and scalable way to insert them into endogenous genomic loci via CRISPR-mediated homology-directed repair. Tandem arrangement FP11-tags allows proportional enhancement of fluorescence signal in tracking intraflagellar transport particles, or reduction of photobleaching for live microtubule imaging. Finally, we show the utility of tandem GFP11-tag in scaffolding protein oligomerization. These experiments illustrate the versatility of FP11-tag as a labelling tool as well as a multimerization-control tool for both imaging and non-imaging applications. PMID:26988139

  4. Versatile protein tagging in cells with split fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Kamiyama, Daichi; Sekine, Sayaka; Barsi-Rhyne, Benjamin; Hu, Jeffrey; Chen, Baohui; Gilbert, Luke A.; Ishikawa, Hiroaki; Leonetti, Manuel D.; Marshall, Wallace F.; Weissman, Jonathan S.; Huang, Bo

    2016-01-01

    In addition to the popular method of fluorescent protein fusion, live cell protein imaging has now seen more and more application of epitope tags. The small size of these tags may reduce functional perturbation and enable signal amplification. To address their background issue, we adapt self-complementing split fluorescent proteins as epitope tags for live cell protein labelling. The two tags, GFP11 and sfCherry11 are derived from the eleventh β-strand of super-folder GFP and sfCherry, respectively. The small size of FP11-tags enables a cost-effective and scalable way to insert them into endogenous genomic loci via CRISPR-mediated homology-directed repair. Tandem arrangement FP11-tags allows proportional enhancement of fluorescence signal in tracking intraflagellar transport particles, or reduction of photobleaching for live microtubule imaging. Finally, we show the utility of tandem GFP11-tag in scaffolding protein oligomerization. These experiments illustrate the versatility of FP11-tag as a labelling tool as well as a multimerization-control tool for both imaging and non-imaging applications. PMID:26988139

  5. Photoactivation and Imaging of Optical Highlighter Fluorescent Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Patterson, George H.

    2011-01-01

    A major advance in the microscopic study of cells and tissues is the introduction of photoactivatable fluorescent proteins which can specifically mark proteins of interest within a living cell. Fluorescent proteins are now available that allow a pool of molecules to be “turned on” by photoactivation. This unit discusses technical aspects for the general use of photoactivatable fluorescent proteins and introduces some specific applications in the concluding remarks. PMID:21732309

  6. Microfluidics-Based Selection of Red-Fluorescent Proteins with Decreased Rates of Photobleaching

    PubMed Central

    Dean, Kevin M.; Lubbeck, Jennifer L.; Davis, Lloyd M.; Regmi, Chola K.; Chapagain, Prem P.; Gerstman, Bernard S.; Jimenez, Ralph; Palmer, Amy E.

    2014-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins offer exceptional labeling specificity in living cells and organisms. Unfortunately, their photophysical properties remain far from ideal for long-term imaging of low-abundance cellular constituents, in large part because of their poor photostability. Despite widespread engineering efforts, improving the photostability of fluorescent proteins remains challenging due to lack of appropriate high-throughput selection methods. Here, we use molecular dynamics guided mutagenesis in conjunction with a recently developed microfluidic-based platform, which sorts cells based on their fluorescence photostability, to identify red fluorescent proteins with decreased photobleaching from a HeLa cell-based library. The identified mutant, named Kriek, has 2.5- and 4-fold higher photostability than its progenitor, mCherry, under widefield and confocal illumination, respectively. Furthermore, the results provide insight into mechanisms for enhancing photostability and their connections with other photophysical processes, thereby providing direction for ongoing development of fluorescent proteins with improved single-molecule and low-copy imaging capabilities. Insight, innovation, integration Fluorescent proteins enable imaging in situ, throughout the visible spectrum, with superb molecular specificity and single-molecule sensitivity. Unfortunately, when compared to leading small-molecule fluorophores (e.g., Cy3), fluorescent proteins, suffer from accelerated photobleaching and poor integrated photon output. This results from a lack of appropriate high-throughput methods for improving the photostability of fluorescent proteins, as well as a poor molecular understanding of fluorescent protein photobleaching. Here, we report the first application of a recently developed microfluidic cell-sorter to identify fluorescent proteins from a mCherry-derived library with improved photostability. The results provide insight into fluorescent protein photophysics, greatly

  7. Proton Pathways in Green Fluorescence Protein

    PubMed Central

    Agmon, Noam

    2005-01-01

    Proton pathways in green fluorescent protein (GFP) are more extended than previously reported. In the x-ray data of wild-type GFP, a two-step exit pathway exists from the active site to the protein surface, controlled by a threonine switch. A proton entry pathway begins at a glutamate-lysine cluster around Glu-5, and extends all the way to the buried Glu-222 near the active site. This structural evidence suggests that GFP may function as a portable light-driven proton-pump, with proton emitted in the excited state through the switchable exit pathway, and replenished from Glu-222 and the Glu-5 entry pathway in the ground state. PMID:15681647

  8. Fluorescence Studies of Protein Crystal Nucleation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pusey, Marc L.

    1999-01-01

    Fluorescence can be used to study protein crystal nucleation through methods such as anisotropy, quenching, and resonance energy transfer (FRET), to follow pH and ionic strength changes, and follow events occurring at the growth interface. We have postulated, based upon a range of experimental evidence that the growth unit of tetragonal hen egg white lysozyme is an octamer. Several fluorescent derivatives of chicken egg white lysozyme have been prepared. The fluorescent probes lucifer yellow (LY), cascade blue, and 5-((2-aminoethyl)aminonapthalene-1-sulfonic acid (EDANS), have been covalently attached to ASP 101. All crystallize in the characteristic tetragonal form, indicating that the bound probes are likely laying within the active site cleft. Crystals of the LY and EDANS derivatives have been found to diffract to at least 1.7 A. A second group of derivatives is to the N-terminal amine group, and these do not crystallize as this site is part of the contact region between the adjacent 43 helix chains. However derivatives at these sites would not interfere with formation of the 43 helices in solution. Preliminary FRET studies have been carried out using N-terminal bound pyrene acetic acid (Ex 340 nm, Em 376 nm) lysozyme as a donor and LY (Ex -425 nm, Em 525 nm) labeled lysozyme as an acceptor. FRET data have been obtained at pH 4.6, 0.1 M NaAc buffer, at 5 and 7% NaCl, 4 C. The corresponding Csat values are 0.471 and 0.362 mg/ml (approximately 3.3 and approximately 2.5 x 10(exp -5) M respectively). The data at both salt concentrations show a consistent trend of decreasing fluorescence intensity of the donor species (PAA) with increasing total protein concentration. This decrease is more pronounced at 7% NaCl, consistent with the expected increased intermolecular interactions at higher salt concentrations reflected in the lower solubility. The calculated average distance between any two protein molecules at 5 x 10(exp -6) M is approximately 70nm, well beyond the

  9. Phycobiliprotein fusion proteins: versatile intensely fluorescent constructs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glazer, Alexander N.; Cai, Yuping A.; Tooley, Aaron J.

    2004-06-01

    Since 1982, phycobiliproteins have served as fluorescent labels in a wide variety of cell and molecule analyses. The exceptional spectroscopic properties of these labels include very high absorbance coefficients and quantum yields, and large Stokes shifts. The spectroscopic diversity of these reagents is restricted to a subset of naturally occurring phycobiliproteins with stable assembly states in vitro, whose target specificity is generated by chemical conjugation to proteins or small molecules. The latter step generates heterogeneity. These limitations have been overcome by expressing various recombinant phycobiliprotein constructs in the cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. PCC7120. Modular recombinant phycobiliprotein-based labels were constructed with some or all of the following features (a) an affinity purification tag; (b) a stable oligomerization domain (to maintain stable higher order assemblies of the phycobiliprotein monomers at very low protein concentration); (c) a biospecific recognition domain. Such phycobiliprotein constructs are readily purified from crude cell extracts by affinity chromatography and used directly as fluorescent labels. To generate constructs for intracellular in vivo labeling, the entire pathways for the biosynthesis of the His-tagged holo- α (phycocyanobilin-bearing) subunit of phycocyanin (emission max. 641 nm) and of the His-tagged holo-α (phycobiliviolin-bearing) subunit of phycoerythrocyanin (emission max. 582 nm) were reconstituted in Escherichia coli.

  10. Chemical reactivation of quenched fluorescent protein molecules enables resin-embedded fluorescence microimaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiong, Hanqing; Zhou, Zhenqiao; Zhu, Mingqiang; Lv, Xiaohua; Li, Anan; Li, Shiwei; Li, Longhui; Yang, Tao; Wang, Siming; Yang, Zhongqin; Xu, Tonghui; Luo, Qingming; Gong, Hui; Zeng, Shaoqun

    2014-06-01

    Resin embedding is a well-established technique to prepare biological specimens for microscopic imaging. However, it is not compatible with modern green-fluorescent protein (GFP) fluorescent-labelling technique because it significantly quenches the fluorescence of GFP and its variants. Previous empirical optimization efforts are good for thin tissue but not successful on macroscopic tissue blocks as the quenching mechanism remains uncertain. Here we show most of the quenched GFP molecules are structurally preserved and not denatured after routine embedding in resin, and can be chemically reactivated to a fluorescent state by alkaline buffer during imaging. We observe up to 98% preservation in yellow-fluorescent protein case, and improve the fluorescence intensity 11.8-fold compared with unprocessed samples. We demonstrate fluorescence microimaging of resin-embedded EGFP/EYFP-labelled tissue block without noticeable loss of labelled structures. This work provides a turning point for the imaging of fluorescent protein-labelled specimens after resin embedding.

  11. Engineering proteins for environmental applications.

    PubMed

    Janssen, D B; Schanstra, J P

    1994-06-01

    Recently, significant new insight has been obtained into the structure and catalytic mechanism of enzymes that convert environmental pollutants. Recent advances in protein engineering make it possible to use this information for improving the catalytic performance of such enzymes to achieve increased stability and expanded substrate range. PMID:7765007

  12. Developing new fluorescent proteins with stagger extension process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Jie; Lu, Jinling; Luo, Haiming; Luo, Qingming; Zhang, Zhihong

    2009-02-01

    The Stagger Extension Process (StEP), a recombination of DNA technique, has been used as a rapid molecular mutagenesis strategy. In this study, for obtaining the fluorescence proteins with new properties, six fluorescence proteins (EYFP, EGFP, ECFP, mCitrine, mCerulean and Venus) were used as the templates to recombine the mutation library by the Stagger Extension Process (StEP) technique. Through screening this mutation library, we have obtained some useful new FPs which are different fluorescent properties with ancestor. These protein will extend fluorescent proteins application.

  13. Lightweight LED Fluorescent lamp using engineering poly carbonate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Hyun-Ju; Lee, Jong-Phil

    2014-09-01

    In this study, we developed lightweight LED fluorescent lamp using thermally conductive engineering PC a heat sink instead of metal. In order to secure price competitiveness, we used double extrusion molding which extrude both the heat sink plate and diffuser plate simultaneously. Fabricated fluorescent lamp has less than 20% of weight as compare to glass fluorescent lamp and power consumption is 20.2 watts, luminous efficiency 123.9 lm/W, respectively. Despite the heat conductive plastic is adopted, the system temperature is maintained less than 35° and the thermal resistance is 25 °/W.

  14. Ultrafast Nonlinear Spectroscopy of Red Fluorescent Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konold, Patrick Eugene

    Red-emitting homologues (RFPs) of the native Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) with emission wavelengths beyond 650 nm are desirable probes for in vivo imaging experiments. They offer the potential for deeper tissue penetration and lower background scatter given a cleaner spectral window. However, bioimaging applications are hindered by poor photophysics ( e.g. low fluorescence quantum yield, high photobleaching), which limits experimental resolution and represents a significant obstacle towards utilization for low copy-number, long-duration imaging applications. In this thesis, a variety of femtosecond nonlinear electronic spectroscopies were employed jointly with site-directed mutagenesis to investigate the photophysical properties of RFPs. In one study, the molecular mechanism of red emission was pursued in two notable RFPs, mPlum and TagRFP675. Solvation dynamics observed with time-resolved transient grating spectroscopy were interpreted with the aid of molecular dynamics simulations to indicate that their red-emission is correlated with the ability of specific chromophore-sidechain hydrogen-bonding interactions to interconvert between direct and water-mediated states. In a second set of studies, two-dimensional double quantum coherence spectroscopy was used to probe the electronic transitions of mPlum. It was discovered that it displayed a response distinctly different from an organic dye in bulk solvent. Modeling indicate of these spectra indicate the spectral features may be attributed to the existence of multiple high-lying (n>1) excited states. The results provide new insight into the electronic structure of these widely used fluorescent probes.

  15. Small fluorescence-activating and absorption-shifting tag for tunable protein imaging in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Plamont, Marie-Aude; Billon-Denis, Emmanuelle; Maurin, Sylvie; Gauron, Carole; Pimenta, Frederico M.; Specht, Christian G.; Shi, Jian; Quérard, Jérôme; Pan, Buyan; Rossignol, Julien; Moncoq, Karine; Morellet, Nelly; Volovitch, Michel; Lescop, Ewen; Chen, Yong; Triller, Antoine; Vriz, Sophie; Le Saux, Thomas; Jullien, Ludovic; Gautier, Arnaud

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents Yellow Fluorescence-Activating and absorption-Shifting Tag (Y-FAST), a small monomeric protein tag, half as large as the green fluorescent protein, enabling fluorescent labeling of proteins in a reversible and specific manner through the reversible binding and activation of a cell-permeant and nontoxic fluorogenic ligand (a so-called fluorogen). A unique fluorogen activation mechanism based on two spectroscopic changes, increase of fluorescence quantum yield and absorption red shift, provides high labeling selectivity. Y-FAST was engineered from the 14-kDa photoactive yellow protein by directed evolution using yeast display and fluorescence-activated cell sorting. Y-FAST is as bright as common fluorescent proteins, exhibits good photostability, and allows the efficient labeling of proteins in various organelles and hosts. Upon fluorogen binding, fluorescence appears instantaneously, allowing monitoring of rapid processes in near real time. Y-FAST distinguishes itself from other tagging systems because the fluorogen binding is highly dynamic and fully reversible, which enables rapid labeling and unlabeling of proteins by addition and withdrawal of the fluorogen, opening new exciting prospects for the development of multiplexing imaging protocols based on sequential labeling. PMID:26711992

  16. Small fluorescence-activating and absorption-shifting tag for tunable protein imaging in vivo.

    PubMed

    Plamont, Marie-Aude; Billon-Denis, Emmanuelle; Maurin, Sylvie; Gauron, Carole; Pimenta, Frederico M; Specht, Christian G; Shi, Jian; Quérard, Jérôme; Pan, Buyan; Rossignol, Julien; Moncoq, Karine; Morellet, Nelly; Volovitch, Michel; Lescop, Ewen; Chen, Yong; Triller, Antoine; Vriz, Sophie; Le Saux, Thomas; Jullien, Ludovic; Gautier, Arnaud

    2016-01-19

    This paper presents Yellow Fluorescence-Activating and absorption-Shifting Tag (Y-FAST), a small monomeric protein tag, half as large as the green fluorescent protein, enabling fluorescent labeling of proteins in a reversible and specific manner through the reversible binding and activation of a cell-permeant and nontoxic fluorogenic ligand (a so-called fluorogen). A unique fluorogen activation mechanism based on two spectroscopic changes, increase of fluorescence quantum yield and absorption red shift, provides high labeling selectivity. Y-FAST was engineered from the 14-kDa photoactive yellow protein by directed evolution using yeast display and fluorescence-activated cell sorting. Y-FAST is as bright as common fluorescent proteins, exhibits good photostability, and allows the efficient labeling of proteins in various organelles and hosts. Upon fluorogen binding, fluorescence appears instantaneously, allowing monitoring of rapid processes in near real time. Y-FAST distinguishes itself from other tagging systems because the fluorogen binding is highly dynamic and fully reversible, which enables rapid labeling and unlabeling of proteins by addition and withdrawal of the fluorogen, opening new exciting prospects for the development of multiplexing imaging protocols based on sequential labeling. PMID:26711992

  17. Protein hydrogels with engineered biomolecular recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mi, Lixin

    Extracellular matrices (ECMs) are the hydrated macromolecular gels in which cells migrate and proliferate and organize into tissues in vivo . The development of artificial ECM with the required mechanical, physico-chemical, and biological properties has long been a challenge in the biomaterial research field. In this dissertation, a novel set of bioactive protein hydrogels has been synthesized and characterized at both molecular and materials levels. The self-recognized and self-assembled protein copolymers have the ability to provide engineered biofunctionality through the controlled arrangement of bioactive domains on the nanoscale. Genetic engineering methods have been employed to synthesize these protein copolymers. Plasmid DNA carrying genes to express both di- and tri-block proteins have been constructed using molecular cloning techniques. These genes were expressed in bacterial E. coli to ensure homogeneous protein length and anticipated structure. Three diblock protein sequences having a leucine zipper construct on one end and polyelectrolyte (AGAGAGPEG)10 on the other, have been studied by circular dichroism, size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation, and static light scattering to characterize their secondary structure, structural stability, and oligomeric state. The results show that ABC diblock mixtures form very stable heterotrimer aggregates via self-recognition and self-assembly of the coiled coil end domains. Tri-block proteins with two leucine zipper motif ends flanking the polyelectrolyte random coil in the middle have been investigated by circular dichroism and fluorescence spectroscopy, and the hydrogels formed by self-assembly of these tri-blocks have been studied using transmission electronic microscopy and diffusing wave spectroscopy. The reversible gelation behavior is the result of heterotrimeric aggregation of helices to form the physical crosslinks in the gel, with the polyelectrolyte region center block retaining

  18. Fluorescence Studies of Protein Crystal Nucleation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pusey, Marc; Sumida, John

    2000-01-01

    -association process is a function of the protein concentration relative to the saturation concentration, and observing it in dilute solution (conc. less than or equal to 10(exp -5)M) requires that the experiments be performed under low solubility conditions, i.e., low temperatures and high salt concentrations. Data from preliminary steady state FRET studies with N-terminal bound pyrene acetic acid (PAA-lys, donor, Ex 340 nm, Em 376 nm) and asp101 LY-lys as an acceptor showed a consistent trend of decreasing donor fluorescence intensity with increasing total protein concentration. The FRET data have been obtained at pH 4.6, 0.1M NaAc buffer, at 5 and 7% NaCl, 4 C. The corresponding C(sub sat) values are 0.471 and 0.362 mg/ml (approx. 3.3 and approx. 2.5 x 10(exp -5)M respectively). The donor fluorescence decrease is more pronounced at7% NaCl, consistent with the expected increased intermolecular interactions at higher salt concentrations as reflected in the lower solubility. Results from these and other ongoing studies will be discussed in conjunction with an emerging model for how tetragonal lysozyme crystals nucleate and the relevance of that model to other proteins.

  19. Toward fluorescence detection of protein residues on surgical instruments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richardson, Patricia R.; Jones, Anita C.; Baxter, Robert L.; Baxter, Helen C.; Whittaker, A. Gavin; Campbell, Gaynor A.

    2004-06-01

    Prion proteins are the infectious agents that cause Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) in humans. These proteins are particularly resistant to normal sterilization procedures, and the theoretical risk of prion transmission via surgical instruments is of current public and professional concern. We are currently investigating fluorescence methods for the detection of proteins on surfaces, with a view to developing an optical-fiber-based system for routine, online monitoring of residual protein contamination on surgical instruments, in hospital sterilization departments. This paper presents preliminary results on the detection of femtomole amounts of fluorescently labelled protein on surgical steel and discusses some of the problems involved in the detection of fluorescence from metal samples.

  20. Novel fluorescent protein from Hydnophora rigida possess cyano emission.

    PubMed

    Bokhari, H; Smith, C; Veerendra, K; Sivaraman, J; Sikaroodi, M; Gillevet, P

    2010-06-01

    Currently, a broad diversity of fluorescent proteins among marine organisms range from cyano-red emissions. Fluorescent proteins differ in their DNA sequences from green fluorescent protein (GFP). We identified cDNA encoding the gene of a new protein from the reef coral Hydnophora rigida of the Merulinidae family. Both the spectral properties and putative primary sequence of the protein has been determined. The cloned cDNA encode peptide we call HriCFP is comprised of 134 amino acids. It has characteristics of a cyano fluorescent protein (HriCFP) and its sequence is markedly different from known GFP from the hydroid jellyfish Aequorea victoria. HriCFP was cloned, expressed, purified and exist as monomer. The peptide mass finger print on the purified protein confirmed identity of HriCFP. PMID:20435020

  1. CHARACTERIZATION OF A CRYPTIC PLASMID FROM ESCHERICHIA COLI O157:H7 AND EVALUATION OF THE EXPRESSION OF GREEN-FLUORESCENT PROTEIN FROM GENETICALLY ENGINEERED DERIVATIVES OF THIS PLASMID

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Escherichia coli O157:H7 strain 86-24 harbors a 3.3 kb cryptic plasmid (pSP). Our objectives were to clone a DNA cassette expressing a green-fluorescent protein (GFP) from a lac promoter and an ampicillin resistance (Amp**r) gene on pSP, and to monitor both the expression of GFP and the stability o...

  2. Novel fluorescent protein from Hydnophora rigida possesses green emission.

    PubMed

    Idrees, M; Thangavelu, K; Sikaroodi, M; Smith, C; Sivaraman, J; Gillevet, P M; Bokhari, H

    2014-05-23

    Fluorescent proteins are a family of proteins capable of producing fluorescence at various specific wavelengths of ultra violet light. We have previously reported the identification and characterization of a novel cyan fluorescent protein (HriCFP) from a reef coral species, Hydnophora rigida. In search of new members of the diverse family of fluorescent proteins, here we report a new green fluorescent protein (HriGFP) from H. rigida. HriGFP was identified, cloned, expressed in Escherichia coli and purified to homogeneity by metal affinity and size exclusion chromatography. The dynamic light scattering and gel filtration experiments suggested the presence of monomers in solution. The peptide mass fingerprint on the purified protein established the identity of HriGFP. HriGFP had excitation peak at 507 nm and emission peak at 527 nm. HriGFP was similar to HriCFP except the last 16 amino acid sequence at the C-terminal; however, they have shown least similarity with other known fluorescent proteins. Moreover the computational model suggests that HriGFP is a globular protein which consists of 6 α-helices and 3 β-sheets. Taken together our results suggested that HriGFP is a novel naturally occurring fluorescent protein that exists as a monomer in solution. PMID:24747076

  3. Fluorescent Protein Based FRET Pairs with Improved Dynamic Range for Fluorescence Lifetime Measurements.

    PubMed

    George Abraham, Bobin; Sarkisyan, Karen S; Mishin, Alexander S; Santala, Ville; Tkachenko, Nikolai V; Karp, Matti

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) using fluorescent protein variants is widely used to study biochemical processes in living cells. FRET detection by fluorescence lifetime measurements is the most direct and robust method to measure FRET. The traditional cyan-yellow fluorescent protein based FRET pairs are getting replaced by green-red fluorescent protein variants. The green-red pair enables excitation at a longer wavelength which reduces cellular autofluorescence and phototoxicity while monitoring FRET. Despite the advances in FRET based sensors, the low FRET efficiency and dynamic range still complicates their use in cell biology and high throughput screening. In this paper, we utilized the higher lifetime of NowGFP and screened red fluorescent protein variants to develop FRET pairs with high dynamic range and FRET efficiency. The FRET variations were analyzed by proteolytic activity and detected by steady-state and time-resolved measurements. Based on the results, NowGFP-tdTomato and NowGFP-mRuby2 have shown high potentials as FRET pairs with large fluorescence lifetime dynamic range. The in vitro measurements revealed that the NowGFP-tdTomato has the highest Förster radius for any fluorescent protein based FRET pairs yet used in biological studies. The developed FRET pairs will be useful for designing FRET based sensors and studies employing Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy (FLIM). PMID:26237400

  4. Structural characterization of the photoswitchable fluorescent protein Dronpa-C62S

    SciTech Connect

    Nam, Ki-Hyun; Kwon, Oh Yeun; Sugiyama, Kanako; Lee, Won-Ho; Kim, Young Kwan; Song, Hyun Kyu; Kim, Eunice Eunkyung; Park, Sam-Yong; Jeon, Hyesung . E-mail: hjeon@kist.re.kr; Hwang, Kwang Yeon . E-mail: chahong@korea.ac.kr

    2007-03-23

    The photoswitching behavior of green fluorescent proteins (GFPs) or GFP-like proteins is increasingly recognized as a new technique for optical marking. Recently, Ando and his colleagues developed a new green fluorescent protein Dronpa, which possesses the unique photochromic property of being photoswitchable in a non-destructive manner. To better understand this mechanism, we determined the crystal structures of a new GFP Dronpa and its mutant C62S, at 1.9 A and 1.8 A, respectively. Determination of the structures demonstrates that a unique hydrogen-bonding network and the sulfur atom of the chromophore are critical to the photoswitching property of Dronpa. Reversible photoswitching was lost in cells expressing the Dronpa-C62S upon repetitive irradiation compared to the native protein. Structural and mutational analyses reveal the chemical basis for the functional properties of photoswitchable fluorescent proteins and provide the basis for subsequent coherent engineering of this subfamily of Dronpa homolog's.

  5. Adaptive Evolution of Eel Fluorescent Proteins from Fatty Acid Binding Proteins Produces Bright Fluorescence in the Marine Environment

    PubMed Central

    Gruber, David F.; Gaffney, Jean P.; Mehr, Shaadi; DeSalle, Rob; Sparks, John S.; Platisa, Jelena; Pieribone, Vincent A.

    2015-01-01

    We report the identification and characterization of two new members of a family of bilirubin-inducible fluorescent proteins (FPs) from marine chlopsid eels and demonstrate a key region of the sequence that serves as an evolutionary switch from non-fluorescent to fluorescent fatty acid-binding proteins (FABPs). Using transcriptomic analysis of two species of brightly fluorescent Kaupichthys eels (Kaupichthys hyoproroides and Kaupichthys n. sp.), two new FPs were identified, cloned and characterized (Chlopsid FP I and Chlopsid FP II). We then performed phylogenetic analysis on 210 FABPs, spanning 16 vertebrate orders, and including 163 vertebrate taxa. We show that the fluorescent FPs diverged as a protein family and are the sister group to brain FABPs. Our results indicate that the evolution of this family involved at least three gene duplication events. We show that fluorescent FABPs possess a unique, conserved tripeptide Gly-Pro-Pro sequence motif, which is not found in non-fluorescent fatty acid binding proteins. This motif arose from a duplication event of the FABP brain isoforms and was under strong purifying selection, leading to the classification of this new FP family. Residues adjacent to the motif are under strong positive selection, suggesting a further refinement of the eel protein’s fluorescent properties. We present a phylogenetic reconstruction of this emerging FP family and describe additional fluorescent FABP members from groups of distantly related eels. The elucidation of this class of fish FPs with diverse properties provides new templates for the development of protein-based fluorescent tools. The evolutionary adaptation from fatty acid-binding proteins to fluorescent fatty acid-binding proteins raises intrigue as to the functional role of bright green fluorescence in this cryptic genus of reclusive eels that inhabit a blue, nearly monochromatic, marine environment. PMID:26561348

  6. Fluorescence plate reader for quantum dot-protein bioconjugation analysis.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Kilmara H G; Brasil, Aluizio G; Cabral Filho, Paulo E; Tenório, Denise P L A; de Siqueira, Ana C A; Leite, Elisa S; Fontes, Adriana; Santos, Beate S

    2014-05-01

    We present here a new and alternative method that uses a Fluorescence Plate Reader in a different approach, not to study protein-protein interactions, but to evaluate the efficiency of the protein bioconjugation to quantum dots (QDs). The method is based on the QDs' native fluorescence and was successfully tested by employing two different QDs-proteins conjugation methodologies, one by promoting covalent binding and other by inducing adsorption processes. For testing, we used bioconjugates between carboxyl coated CdTe QDs and bovine serum albumin, concanavalin A lectin and anti-A antibody. Flow cytometry and fluorescence spectroscopy studies corroborated the results found by the Fluorescence Plate Reader assay. This kind of analysis is important because poor bioconjugation efficiency leads to unsuccessful applications of the fluorescent bioconjugates. We believe that our method presents the possibility of performing semi-quantitative and simultaneous analysis of different samples with accuracy taking the advantage of the high sensitivity of optical based measurements. PMID:24734547

  7. Use of anaerobic green fluorescent protein versus green fluorescent protein as reporter in lactic acid bacteria.

    PubMed

    Landete, José M; Langa, Susana; Revilla, Concepción; Margolles, Abelardo; Medina, Margarita; Arqués, Juan L

    2015-08-01

    Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) are commonly used in the production of fermented and probiotic foods. Development of molecular tools to discriminate the strains of interest from the endogenous microbiota in complex environments like food or gut is of high interest. Green fluorescent protein (GFP)-like chromophores strictly requires molecular oxygen for maturation of fluorescence, which restrict the study of microorganisms in low-oxygen environments. In this work, we have developed a noninvasive cyan-green fluorescent based reporter system for real-time tracking of LAB that is functional under anoxic conditions. The evoglow-Pp1 was cloned downstream from the promoters D-alanyl-D-alanine carboxypeptidase and elongation factor Tu of Lactobacillus reuteri CECT925 using pNZ8048 and downstream of the lactococcal P1 promoter using pT1NX. The classical gfp was also cloned in pT1NX. These recombinant expression vectors were electroporated into Lactococccus, Lactobacillus, and Enterococcus strains with biotechnological and/or probiotic interests to assess and compare their functionality under different conditions of oxygen and pH. The expression was analyzed by imaging and fluorometric methods as well as by flow cytometry. We demonstrate that reporter systems pNZ:TuR-aFP and pT1-aFP are two versatile molecular markers for monitoring LAB in food and fecal environments without the potential problems caused by oxygen and pH limitations, which could be exploited for in vivo studies. Production of the fluorescent protein did not disturb any important physiological properties of the parental strains, such as growth rate, reuterin, or bacteriocin production. PMID:26129953

  8. Green Fluorescent Protein with Anionic Tryptophan-Based Chromophore and Long Fluorescence Lifetime

    PubMed Central

    Sarkisyan, Karen S.; Goryashchenko, Alexander S.; Lidsky, Peter V.; Gorbachev, Dmitry A.; Bozhanova, Nina G.; Gorokhovatsky, Andrey Yu.; Pereverzeva, Alina R.; Ryumina, Alina P.; Zherdeva, Victoria V.; Savitsky, Alexander P.; Solntsev, Kyril M.; Bommarius, Andreas S.; Sharonov, George V.; Lindquist, Jake R.; Drobizhev, Mikhail; Hughes, Thomas E.; Rebane, Aleksander; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.; Mishin, Alexander S.

    2015-01-01

    Spectral diversity of fluorescent proteins, crucial for multiparameter imaging, is based mainly on chemical diversity of their chromophores. Recently we have reported, to our knowledge, a new green fluorescent protein WasCFP—the first fluorescent protein with a tryptophan-based chromophore in the anionic state. However, only a small portion of WasCFP molecules exists in the anionic state at physiological conditions. In this study we report on an improved variant of WasCFP, named NowGFP, with the anionic form dominating at 37°C and neutral pH. It is 30% brighter than enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) and exhibits a fluorescence lifetime of 5.1 ns. We demonstrated that signals of NowGFP and EGFP can be clearly distinguished by fluorescence lifetime in various models, including mammalian cells, mouse tumor xenograft, and Drosophila larvae. NowGFP thus provides an additional channel for multiparameter fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy of green fluorescent proteins. PMID:26200874

  9. Fluorescence of Alexa fluor dye tracks protein folding.

    PubMed

    Lindhoud, Simon; Westphal, Adrie H; Visser, Antonie J W G; Borst, Jan Willem; van Mierlo, Carlo P M

    2012-01-01

    Fluorescence spectroscopy is an important tool for the characterization of protein folding. Often, a protein is labeled with appropriate fluorescent donor and acceptor probes and folding-induced changes in Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) are monitored. However, conformational changes of the protein potentially affect fluorescence properties of both probes, thereby profoundly complicating interpretation of FRET data. In this study, we assess the effects protein folding has on fluorescence properties of Alexa Fluor 488 (A488), which is commonly used as FRET donor. Here, A488 is covalently attached to Cys69 of apoflavodoxin from Azotobacter vinelandii. Although coupling of A488 slightly destabilizes apoflavodoxin, the three-state folding of this protein, which involves a molten globule intermediate, is unaffected. Upon folding of apoflavodoxin, fluorescence emission intensity of A488 changes significantly. To illuminate the molecular sources of this alteration, we applied steady state and time-resolved fluorescence techniques. The results obtained show that tryptophans cause folding-induced changes in quenching of Alexa dye. Compared to unfolded protein, static quenching of A488 is increased in the molten globule. Upon populating the native state both static and dynamic quenching of A488 decrease considerably. We show that fluorescence quenching of Alexa Fluor dyes is a sensitive reporter of conformational changes during protein folding. PMID:23056480

  10. Mesoscopic Fluorescence Molecular Tomography for Evaluating Engineered Tissues.

    PubMed

    Ozturk, Mehmet S; Chen, Chao-Wei; Ji, Robin; Zhao, Lingling; Nguyen, Bao-Ngoc B; Fisher, John P; Chen, Yu; Intes, Xavier

    2016-03-01

    Optimization of regenerative medicine strategies includes the design of biomaterials, development of cell-seeding methods, and control of cell-biomaterial interactions within the engineered tissues. Among these steps, one paramount challenge is to non-destructively image the engineered tissues in their entirety to assess structure, function, and molecular expression. It is especially important to be able to enable cell phenotyping and monitor the distribution and migration of cells throughout the bulk scaffold. Advanced fluorescence microscopic techniques are commonly employed to perform such tasks; however, they are limited to superficial examination of tissue constructs. Therefore, the field of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine would greatly benefit from the development of molecular imaging techniques which are capable of non-destructive imaging of three-dimensional cellular distribution and maturation within a tissue-engineered scaffold beyond the limited depth of current microscopic techniques. In this review, we focus on an emerging depth-resolved optical mesoscopic imaging technique, termed laminar optical tomography (LOT) or mesoscopic fluorescence molecular tomography (MFMT), which enables longitudinal imaging of cellular distribution in thick tissue engineering constructs at depths of a few millimeters and with relatively high resolution. The physical principle, image formation, and instrumentation of LOT/MFMT systems are introduced. Representative applications in tissue engineering include imaging the distribution of human mesenchymal stem cells embedded in hydrogels, imaging of bio-printed tissues, and in vivo applications. PMID:26645079

  11. Fluorescence Quantum Yield Measurements of Fluorescent Proteins: A Laboratory Experiment for a Biochemistry or Molecular Biophysics Laboratory Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wall, Kathryn P.; Dillon, Rebecca; Knowles, Michelle K.

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins are commonly used in cell biology to assess where proteins are within a cell as a function of time and provide insight into intracellular protein function. However, the usefulness of a fluorescent protein depends directly on the quantum yield. The quantum yield relates the efficiency at which a fluorescent molecule converts…

  12. A Laboratory Exercise for Visible Gel Filtration Chromatography Using Fluorescent Proteins

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhang, Wenqiang; Cao, Yibin; Xu, Lishan; Gong, Jufang; Sun, Meihao

    2015-01-01

    Gel filtration chromatography (GFC) separates molecules according to size and is one of the most widely used methods for protein purification. Here, red fluorescent protein (RFP), green fluorescent protein (GFP), yellow fluorescent protein (YFP), cyan fluorescent protein (CFP), and/or their fusion proteins were prokaryotically expressed, purified,…

  13. Dependence of fluorescent protein brightness on protein concentration in solution and enhancement of it

    PubMed Central

    Morikawa, Takamitsu J.; Fujita, Hideaki; Kitamura, Akira; Horio, Takashi; Yamamoto, Johtaro; Kinjo, Masataka; Sasaki, Akira; Machiyama, Hiroaki; Yoshizawa, Keiko; Ichimura, Taro; Imada, Katsumi; Nagai, Takeharu; Watanabe, Tomonobu M.

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins have been widely used in biology because of their compatibility and varied applications in living specimens. Fluorescent proteins are often undesirably sensitive to intracellular conditions such as pH and ion concentration, generating considerable issues at times. However, harnessing these intrinsic sensitivities can help develop functional probes. In this study, we found that the fluorescence of yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) depends on the protein concentration in the solution and that this dependence can be enhanced by adding a glycine residue in to the YFP; we applied this finding to construct an intracellular protein-crowding sensor. A Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) pair, involving a cyan fluorescent protein (CFP) insensitive to protein concentration and a glycine-inserted YFP, works as a genetically encoded probe to evaluate intracellular crowding. By measuring the fluorescence of the present FRET probe, we were able to detect dynamic changes in protein crowding in living cells. PMID:26956628

  14. Protein chip analysis by probing time-resolved UV fluorescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grigaravicius, Paulius; Dietrich, Rüdiger; Fritzsche, Wolfgang; Greulich, Karl Otto; Horn, Uwe; Knoll, Dietmar; Peters, Sven; Striebel, Hans-Martin; Schellenberg, Peter

    2007-07-01

    We describe a novel label-free method to analyse protein interactions on microarrays as well as in solution. By this technique the time resolved native protein fluorescence in the UV is probed. The method is based on alterations of the protein upon ligand binding, and, as a consequence, of alterations of the environment of the proteins' aromatic amino acids. These amino acids act as internal probes, and as a result, the fluorescence lifetime of the proteins change due to binding to a ligand partner such as another protein. We were able to demonstrate the feasibility of the method with many compounds, including protein-protein, protein-antibody, protein-nucleic acid and protein-small ligand pairs. Unlike to many other label-free techniques, the sensitivity of the method does not depend on the size of the counterbinding ligand and therefore is particularly suitable for drug monitoring, when small molecules are involved.

  15. Ultraviolet fluorescence of coelenteramide and coelenteramide-containing fluorescent proteins. Experimental and theoretical study.

    PubMed

    Alieva, Roza R; Tomilin, Felix N; Kuzubov, Alexander A; Ovchinnikov, Sergey G; Kudryasheva, Nadezhda S

    2016-09-01

    Coelenteramide-containing fluorescent proteins are products of bioluminescent reactions of marine coelenterates. They are called 'discharged photoproteins'. Their light-induced fluorescence spectra are variable, depending considerably on external conditions. Current work studies a dependence of light-induced fluorescence spectra of discharged photoproteins obelin, aequorin, and clytin on excitation energy. It was demonstrated that photoexcitation to the upper electron-excited states (260-300nm) of the discharged photoproteins initiates a fluorescence peak in the near UV region, in addition to the blue-green emission. To characterize the UV fluorescence, the light-induced fluorescence spectra of coelenteramide (CLM), fluorophore of the discharged photoproteins, were studied in methanol solution. Similar to photoproteins, the CLM spectra depended on photoexcitation energy; the additional peak (330nm) in the near UV region was observed in CLM fluorescence at higher excitation energy (260-300nm). Quantum chemical calculations by time depending method with B3LYP/cc-pVDZ showed that the conjugated pyrazine-phenolic fragment and benzene moiety of CLM molecule are responsible for the additional UV fluorescence peak. Quantum yields of CLM fluorescence in methanol were 0.028±0.005 at 270-340nm photoexcitation. A conclusion was made that the UV emission of CLM might contribute to the UV fluorescence of the discharged photoproteins. The study develops knowledge on internal energy transfer in biological structures - complexes of proteins with low-weight aromatic molecules. PMID:27400455

  16. Time-resolved FRET fluorescence spectroscopy of visible fluorescent protein pairs.

    PubMed

    Visser, A J W G; Laptenok, S P; Visser, N V; van Hoek, A; Birch, D J S; Brochon, J-C; Borst, J W

    2010-01-01

    Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a powerful method for obtaining information about small-scale lengths between biomacromolecules. Visible fluorescent proteins (VFPs) are widely used as spectrally different FRET pairs, where one VFP acts as a donor and another VFP as an acceptor. The VFPs are usually fused to the proteins of interest, and this fusion product is genetically encoded in cells. FRET between VFPs can be determined by analysis of either the fluorescence decay properties of the donor molecule or the rise time of acceptor fluorescence. Time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy is the technique of choice to perform these measurements. FRET can be measured not only in solution, but also in living cells by the technique of fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM), where fluorescence lifetimes are determined with the spatial resolution of an optical microscope. Here we focus attention on time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy of purified, selected VFPs (both single VFPs and FRET pairs of VFPs) in cuvette-type experiments. For quantitative interpretation of FRET-FLIM experiments in cellular systems, details of the molecular fluorescence are needed that can be obtained from experiments with isolated VFPs. For analysis of the time-resolved fluorescence experiments of VFPs, we have utilised the maximum entropy method procedure to obtain a distribution of fluorescence lifetimes. Distributed lifetime patterns turn out to have diagnostic value, for instance, in observing populations of VFP pairs that are FRET-inactive. PMID:19693494

  17. LucY: A versatile new fluorescent reporter protein

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Auldridge, Michele E.; Cao, Hongnan; Sen, Saurabh; Franz, Laura P.; Bingman, Craig A.; Yennamalli, Ragothaman M.; Phillips, Jr., George N.; Mead, David; Steinmetz, Eric J.; Michnick, Stephen W.

    2015-04-23

    We report on the discovery, isolation, and use of a novel yellow fluorescent protein. Lucigen Yellow (LucY) binds one FAD molecule within its core, thus shielding it from water and maintaining its structure so that fluorescence is 10-fold higher than freely soluble FAD. LucY displays excitation and emission spectra characteristic of FAD, with 3 excitation peaks at 276nm, 377nm, and 460nm and a single emission peak at 530nm. These excitation and emission maxima provide the large Stokes shift beneficial to fluorescence experimentation. LucY belongs to the MurB family of UDP-N-acetylenolpyruvylglucosamine reductases. The high resolution crystal structure shows that in contrastmore » to other structurally resolved MurB enzymes, LucY does not contain a potentially quenching aromatic residue near the FAD isoalloxazine ring, which may explain its increased fluorescence over related proteins. Using E. coli as a system in which to develop LucY as a reporter, we show that it is amenable to circular permutation and use as a reporter of protein-protein interaction. Fragmentation between its distinct domains renders LucY non-fluorescent, but fluorescence can be partially restored by fusion of the fragments to interacting protein domains. Thus, LucY may find application in Protein-fragment Complementation Assays for evaluating protein-protein interactions.« less

  18. LucY: A versatile new fluorescent reporter protein

    SciTech Connect

    Auldridge, Michele E.; Cao, Hongnan; Sen, Saurabh; Franz, Laura P.; Bingman, Craig A.; Yennamalli, Ragothaman M.; Phillips, Jr., George N.; Mead, David; Steinmetz, Eric J.; Michnick, Stephen W.

    2015-04-23

    We report on the discovery, isolation, and use of a novel yellow fluorescent protein. Lucigen Yellow (LucY) binds one FAD molecule within its core, thus shielding it from water and maintaining its structure so that fluorescence is 10-fold higher than freely soluble FAD. LucY displays excitation and emission spectra characteristic of FAD, with 3 excitation peaks at 276nm, 377nm, and 460nm and a single emission peak at 530nm. These excitation and emission maxima provide the large Stokes shift beneficial to fluorescence experimentation. LucY belongs to the MurB family of UDP-N-acetylenolpyruvylglucosamine reductases. The high resolution crystal structure shows that in contrast to other structurally resolved MurB enzymes, LucY does not contain a potentially quenching aromatic residue near the FAD isoalloxazine ring, which may explain its increased fluorescence over related proteins. Using E. coli as a system in which to develop LucY as a reporter, we show that it is amenable to circular permutation and use as a reporter of protein-protein interaction. Fragmentation between its distinct domains renders LucY non-fluorescent, but fluorescence can be partially restored by fusion of the fragments to interacting protein domains. Thus, LucY may find application in Protein-fragment Complementation Assays for evaluating protein-protein interactions.

  19. LucY: A Versatile New Fluorescent Reporter Protein

    PubMed Central

    Auldridge, Michele E.; Franz, Laura P.; Bingman, Craig A.; Yennamalli, Ragothaman M.; Phillips, George N.; Mead, David; Steinmetz, Eric J.

    2015-01-01

    We report on the discovery, isolation, and use of a novel yellow fluorescent protein. Lucigen Yellow (LucY) binds one FAD molecule within its core, thus shielding it from water and maintaining its structure so that fluorescence is 10-fold higher than freely soluble FAD. LucY displays excitation and emission spectra characteristic of FAD, with 3 excitation peaks at 276nm, 377nm, and 460nm and a single emission peak at 530nm. These excitation and emission maxima provide the large Stokes shift beneficial to fluorescence experimentation. LucY belongs to the MurB family of UDP-N-acetylenolpyruvylglucosamine reductases. The high resolution crystal structure shows that in contrast to other structurally resolved MurB enzymes, LucY does not contain a potentially quenching aromatic residue near the FAD isoalloxazine ring, which may explain its increased fluorescence over related proteins. Using E. coli as a system in which to develop LucY as a reporter, we show that it is amenable to circular permutation and use as a reporter of protein-protein interaction. Fragmentation between its distinct domains renders LucY non-fluorescent, but fluorescence can be partially restored by fusion of the fragments to interacting protein domains. Thus, LucY may find application in Protein-fragment Complementation Assays for evaluating protein-protein interactions. PMID:25906065

  20. mMaple: A Photoconvertible Fluorescent Protein for Use in Multiple Imaging Modalities

    PubMed Central

    McEvoy, Ann L.; Hoi, Hiofan; Bates, Mark; Platonova, Evgenia; Cranfill, Paula J.; Baird, Michelle A.; Davidson, Michael W.; Ewers, Helge; Liphardt, Jan; Campbell, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    Recent advances in fluorescence microscopy have extended the spatial resolution to the nanometer scale. Here, we report an engineered photoconvertible fluorescent protein (pcFP) variant, designated as mMaple, that is suited for use in multiple conventional and super-resolution imaging modalities, specifically, widefield and confocal microscopy, structured illumination microscopy (SIM), and single-molecule localization microscopy. We demonstrate the versatility of mMaple by obtaining super-resolution images of protein organization in Escherichia coli and conventional fluorescence images of mammalian cells. Beneficial features of mMaple include high photostability of the green state when expressed in mammalian cells and high steady state intracellular protein concentration of functional protein when expressed in E. coli. mMaple thus enables both fast live-cell ensemble imaging and high precision single molecule localization for a single pcFP-containing construct. PMID:23240015

  1. Common fluorescent proteins for single-molecule localization microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klementieva, Natalia V.; Bozhanova, Nina G.; Mishina, Natalie M.; Zagaynova, Elena V.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.; Mishin, Alexander S.

    2015-07-01

    Super-resolution techniques for breaking the diffraction barrier are spread out over multiple studies nowadays. Single-molecule localization microscopy such as PALM, STORM, GSDIM, etc allow to get super-resolved images of cell ultrastructure by precise localization of individual fluorescent molecules via their temporal isolation. However, these methods are supposed the use of fluorescent dyes and proteins with special characteristics (photoactivation/photoconversion). At the same time, there is a need for retaining high photostability of fluorophores during long-term acquisition. Here, we first showed the potential of common red fluorescent protein for single-molecule localization microscopy based on spontaneous intrinsic blinking. Also, we assessed the effect of different imaging media on photobleaching of these fluorescent proteins. Monomeric orange and red fluorescent proteins were examined for stochastic switching from a dark state to a bright fluorescent state. We studied fusions with cytoskeletal proteins in NIH/3T3 and HeLa cells. Imaging was performed on the Nikon N-STORM system equipped with EMCCD camera. To define the optimal imaging conditions we tested several types of cell culture media and buffers. As a result, high-resolution images of cytoskeleton structure were obtained. Essentially, low-intensity light was sufficient to initiate the switching of tested red fluorescent protein reducing phototoxicity and provide long-term live-cell imaging.

  2. Protein Engineering: Case Studies of Commercialized Engineered Products

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walsh, Gary

    2007-01-01

    Programs in biochemistry invariably encompass the principles of protein engineering. Students often display increased understanding and enthusiasm when theoretical concepts are underpinned by practical example. Herein are presented five case studies, each focusing upon a commercial protein product engineered to enhance its application-relevant…

  3. Subcellular localization of transiently expressed fluorescent fusion proteins.

    PubMed

    Collings, David A

    2013-01-01

    The recent and massive expansion in plant genomics data has generated a large number of gene sequences for which two seemingly simple questions need to be answered: where do the proteins encoded by these genes localize in cells, and what do they do? One widespread approach to answering the localization question has been to use particle bombardment to transiently express unknown proteins tagged with green fluorescent protein (GFP) or its numerous derivatives. Confocal fluorescence microscopy is then used to monitor the localization of the fluorescent protein as it hitches a ride through the cell. The subcellular localization of the fusion protein, if not immediately apparent, can then be determined by comparison to localizations generated by fluorescent protein fusions to known signalling sequences and proteins, or by direct comparison with fluorescent dyes. This review aims to be a tour guide for researchers wanting to travel this hitch-hiker's path, and for reviewers and readers who wish to understand their travel reports. It will describe some of the technology available for visualizing protein localizations, and some of the experimental approaches for optimizing and confirming localizations generated by particle bombardment in onion epidermal cells, the most commonly used experimental system. As the non-conservation of signal sequences in heterologous expression systems such as onion, and consequent mis-targeting of fusion proteins, is always a potential problem, the epidermal cells of the Argenteum mutant of pea are proposed as a model system. PMID:23996319

  4. Photoactivatable fluorescent proteins for super-resolution microscopy.

    PubMed

    Ishitsuka, Yuji; Nienhaus, Karin; Nienhaus, G Ulrich

    2014-01-01

    Super-resolution fluorescence microscopy techniques such as simulated emission depletion (STED) microscopy and photoactivated localization microscopy (PALM) allow substructures, organelles or even proteins within a cell to be imaged with a resolution far below the diffraction limit of ~200 nm. The development of advanced fluorescent proteins, especially photoactivatable fluorescent proteins of the GFP family, has greatly contributed to the successful application of these techniques to live-cell imaging. Here, we will illustrate how two fluorescent proteins with different photoactivation mechanisms can be utilized in high resolution dual color PALM imaging to obtain insights into a cellular process that otherwise would not be accessible. We will explain how to set up and perform the experiment and how to use our latest software "a-livePALM" for fast and efficient data analysis. PMID:24718806

  5. Mechanism of chromophore assisted laser inactivation employing fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    McLean, Mark A; Rajfur, Zenon; Chen, Zaozao; Humphrey, David; Yang, Bing; Sligar, Stephen G; Jacobson, Ken

    2009-03-01

    Chromophore assisted laser inactivation (CALI) is a technique that uses irradiation of chromophores proximate to a target protein to inactivate function. Previously, enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) mediated CALI has been used to inactivate EGFP-fusion proteins in a spatio-temporally defined manner within cells, but the mechanism of inactivation is unknown. To help elucidate the mechanism of protein inactivation mediated by fluorescent protein CALI ([FP]-CALI), the activities of purified glutathione-S-transferase-FP (GST-EXFP) fusions were measured after laser irradiation in vitro. Singlet oxygen and free radical quenchers as well as the removal of oxygen inhibited CALI, indicating the involvement of a reactive oxygen species (ROS). At higher concentrations of protein, turbidity after CALI increased significantly indicating cross-linking of proximate fusion proteins suggesting that damage of residues on the surface of the protein, distant from the active site, results in inactivation. Control experiments removed sample heating as a possible cause of these effects. Different FP mutants fused to GST vary in their CALI efficiency in the order enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) > enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (EYFP) > enhanced cyan fluorescent protein (ECFP), while a GST construct that binds fluorescein-based arsenical hairpin binder (FlAsH) results in significantly higher CALI efficiency than any of the fluorescent proteins (XFPs) tested. It is likely that the hierarchy of XFP effectiveness reflects the balance between ROS that are trapped within the XFP structure and cause fluorophore and chromophore bleaching and those that escape to effect CALI of proximate proteins. PMID:19199572

  6. Fluorescence labeling of carbon nanotubes and visualization of a nanotube-protein hybrid under fluorescence microscope.

    PubMed

    Yoshimura, Shige H; Khan, Shahbaz; Maruyama, Hiroyuki; Nakayama, Yoshikazu; Takeyasu, Kunio

    2011-04-11

    Biological applications of carbon nanotubes have been hampered by the inability to visualize them using conventional optical microscope, which is the most common tool for the observation and measurement of biological processes. Recently, a number of fluorescence labeling methods for biomolecules and various fluorescence probes have been developed and widely utilized in biological fields. Therefore, labeling carbon nanotubes with such fluorophores under physiological conditions will be highly useful in their biological applications. In this Article, we present a method to fluorescently label nanotubes by combining a detergent and a fluorophore commonly used in biological experiments. Fluorophores carrying an amino group (Texas Red hydrazide or BODIPY FL-hydrazide) were covalently attached to the hydroxyl groups of Tween 20 using carbonyldiimidazole. Fluorescence microscopy demonstrated that nanotubes were efficiently solubilized and labeled by this fluorescently labeled detergent. By using this technique, we also demonstrated multicolor fluorescence imaging of a nanotube-protein hybrid. PMID:21395219

  7. Latest methods of fluorescence-based protein crystal identification

    SciTech Connect

    Meyer, Arne; Betzel, Christian

    2015-01-28

    Fluorescence, whether intrinsic or by using trace fluorescent labeling, can be a powerful aid in macromolecule crystallization. Its use in screening for crystals is discussed here. Successful protein crystallization screening experiments are dependent upon the experimenter being able to identify positive outcomes. The introduction of fluorescence techniques has brought a powerful and versatile tool to the aid of the crystal grower. Trace fluorescent labeling, in which a fluorescent probe is covalently bound to a subpopulation (<0.5%) of the protein, enables the use of visible fluorescence. Alternatively, one can avoid covalent modification and use UV fluorescence, exploiting the intrinsic fluorescent amino acids present in most proteins. By the use of these techniques, crystals that had previously been obscured in the crystallization drop can readily be identified and distinguished from amorphous precipitate or salt crystals. Additionally, lead conditions that may not have been obvious as such under white-light illumination can be identified. In all cases review of the screening plate is considerably accelerated, as the eye can quickly note objects of increased intensity.

  8. Measurement of protein-like fluorescence in river and waste water using a handheld spectrophotometer.

    PubMed

    Baker, Andy; Ward, David; Lieten, Shakti H; Periera, Ryan; Simpson, Ellie C; Slater, Malcolm

    2004-07-01

    Protein-like fluorescence intensity in rivers increases with increasing anthropogenic DOM inputs from sewerage and farm wastes. Here, a portable luminescence spectrophotometer was used to investigate if this technology could be used to provide both field scientists with a rapid pollution monitoring tool and process control engineers with a portable waste water monitoring device, through the measurement of river and waste water tryptophan-like fluorescence from a range of rivers in NE England and from effluents from within two waste water treatment plants. The portable spectrophotometer determined that waste waters and sewerage effluents had the highest tryptophan-like fluorescence intensity, urban streams had an intermediate tryptophan-like fluorescence intensity, and the upstream river samples of good water quality the lowest tryptophan-like fluorescence intensity. Replicate samples demonstrated that fluorescence intensity is reproducible to +/- 20% for low fluorescence, 'clean' river water samples and +/- 5% for urban water and waste waters. Correlations between fluorescence measured by the portable spectrophotometer with a conventional bench machine were 0.91; (Spearman's rho, n = 143), demonstrating that the portable spectrophotometer does correlate with tryptophan-like fluorescence intensity measured using the bench spectrophotometer. PMID:15223288

  9. Two-photon excited UV fluorescence for protein crystal detection

    SciTech Connect

    Madden, Jeremy T.; DeWalt, Emma L.; Simpson, Garth J.

    2011-10-01

    Complementary measurements using SONICC and TPE-UVF allow the sensitive and selective detection of protein crystals. Two-photon excited ultraviolet fluorescence (TPE-UVF) microscopy is explored for sensitive protein-crystal detection as a complement to second-order nonlinear optical imaging of chiral crystals (SONICC). Like conventional ultraviolet fluorescence (UVF), TPE-UVF generates image contrast based on the intrinsic fluorescence of aromatic residues, generally producing higher fluorescence emission within crystals than the mother liquor by nature of the higher local protein concentration. However, TPE-UVF has several advantages over conventional UVF, including (i) insensitivity to optical scattering, allowing imaging in turbid matrices, (ii) direct compatibility with conventional optical plates and windows by using visible light for excitation, (iii) elimination of potentially damaging out-of-plane UV excitation, (iv) improved signal to noise through background reduction from out-of-plane excitation and (v) relatively simple integration into instrumentation developed for SONICC.

  10. Spectral diversity of fluorescent proteins from the anthozoan Corynactis californica.

    PubMed

    Schnitzler, Christine E; Keenan, Robert J; McCord, Robert; Matysik, Artur; Christianson, Lynne M; Haddock, Steven H D

    2008-01-01

    Color morphs of the temperate, nonsymbiotic corallimorpharian Corynactis californica show variation in pigment pattern and coloring. We collected seven distinct color morphs of C. californica from subtidal locations in Monterey Bay, California, and found that tissue- and color-morph-specific expression of at least six different genes is responsible for this variation. Each morph contains at least three to four distinct genetic loci that code for these colors, and one morph contains at least five loci. These genes encode a subfamily of new GFP-like proteins, which fluoresce across the visible spectrum from green to red, while sharing between 75% to 89% pairwise amino-acid identity. Biophysical characterization reveals interesting spectral properties, including a bright yellow protein, an orange protein, and a red protein exhibiting a "fluorescent timer" phenotype. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that the FP genes from this species evolved together but that diversification of anthozoan fluorescent proteins has taken place outside of phylogenetic constraints, especially within the Corallimorpharia. The discovery of more examples of fluorescent proteins in a non-bioluminescent, nonsymbiotic anthozoan highlights possibilities of adaptive ecological significance unrelated to light regulation for algal symbionts. The patterns and colors of fluorescent proteins in C. californica and similar species may hold meaning for organisms that possess the visual pigments to distinguish them. PMID:18330643

  11. Engineered Upconversion Nanoparticles for Resolving Protein Interactions inside Living Cells.

    PubMed

    Drees, Christoph; Raj, Athira Naduviledathu; Kurre, Rainer; Busch, Karin B; Haase, Markus; Piehler, Jacob

    2016-09-12

    Upconversion nanoparticles (UCNPs) convert near-infrared into visible light at much lower excitation densities than those used in classic two-photon absorption microscopy. Here, we engineered <50 nm UCNPs for application as efficient lanthanide resonance energy transfer (LRET) donors inside living cells. By optimizing the dopant concentrations and the core-shell structure for higher excitation densities, we observed enhanced UCNP emission as well as strongly increased sensitized acceptor fluorescence. For the application of these UCNPs in complex biological environments, we developed a biocompatible surface coating functionalized with a nanobody recognizing green fluorescent protein (GFP). Thus, rapid and specific targeting to GFP-tagged fusion proteins in the mitochondrial outer membrane and detection of protein interactions by LRET in living cells was achieved. PMID:27510808

  12. Manipulating fluorescence quenching efficiency of graphene by defect engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Xitao; Zafar, Amina; Nan, Haiyan; Yu, Yuanfang; Zhao, Weiwei; Liang, Zheng; Zhang, Xueao; Ni, Zhenhua

    2016-05-01

    We report on the manipulation of the fluorescence quenching of Rhodamine 6G (R6G) on graphene by defect engineering via hydrogen and Ar+ plasma treatments. The amount and nature of defects in graphene were estimated on the basis of the Raman intensity ratios I(D)/I(G) and I(D)/I(D‧) of graphene. Results showed that the quenching factor (QF) gradually decreases from ∼40 to ∼4 and ∼12 for hydrogenated graphene (sp3 defects) and Ar+-plasma-treated graphene (vacancy-like defects), respectively, with different amounts of defects. Our results indicated that the fluorescence quenching efficiency of graphene is strongly dependent on the amount and nature of defects.

  13. Measuring and Sorting Cell Populations Expressing Isospectral Fluorescent Proteins with Different Fluorescence Lifetimes

    PubMed Central

    Naivar, Mark; Houston, Jessica P.; Brent, Roger

    2014-01-01

    Study of signal transduction in live cells benefits from the ability to visualize and quantify light emitted by fluorescent proteins (XFPs) fused to different signaling proteins. However, because cell signaling proteins are often present in small numbers, and because the XFPs themselves are poor fluorophores, the amount of emitted light, and the observable signal in these studies, is often small. An XFP's fluorescence lifetime contains additional information about the immediate environment of the fluorophore that can augment the information from its weak light signal. Here, we constructed and expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae variants of Teal Fluorescent Protein (TFP) and Citrine that were isospectral but had shorter fluorescence lifetimes, ∼1.5 ns vs ∼3 ns. We modified microscopic and flow cytometric instruments to measure fluorescence lifetimes in live cells. We developed digital hardware and a measure of lifetime called a “pseudophasor” that we could compute quickly enough to permit sorting by lifetime in flow. We used these abilities to sort mixtures of cells expressing TFP and the short-lifetime TFP variant into subpopulations that were respectively 97% and 94% pure. This work demonstrates the feasibility of using information about fluorescence lifetime to help quantify cell signaling in living cells at the high throughput provided by flow cytometry. Moreover, it demonstrates the feasibility of isolating and recovering subpopulations of cells with different XFP lifetimes for subsequent experimentation. PMID:25302964

  14. Rational design of enhanced photoresistance in a photoswitchable fluorescent protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duan, Chenxi; Byrdin, Martin; El Khatib, Mariam; Henry, Xavier; Adam, Virgile; Bourgeois, Dominique

    2015-03-01

    Fluorescent proteins are particularly susceptible to photobleaching, the permanent loss of fluorescence emission resulting from photodestruction of the chromophore. In the case of Reversibly Switchable Fluorescent Proteins (RSFPs), which can be switched back and forth between a non-fluorescent and a fluorescent state, the achievable number of switching cycles is limited by photobleaching, a process known as photofatigue. Photofatigue has become a crucial limitation in a number of advanced applications based on repeated photoswitching of RSFPs, notably in the field of super-resolution fluorescence microscopy. Here, based on our previous structural investigation of photobleaching mechanisms in IrisFP, an RSFP also capable of green-to-red photoconversion, we present the rational design of a single-mutant IrisFP-M159A that displays considerably enhanced photostability. The results suggest that, under moderate illumination intensities, photobleaching of IrisFP-like Anthozoan fluorescent proteins such as EosFP, Dendra or Dronpa derivatives is mainly driven by an oxygen-dependent mechanism resulting in the irreversible sulfoxidation of methionine 159. The photofatigue decay profiles of IrisFP and its photoresistant mutant IrisFP-M159A were investigated in different experimental conditions, in vitro and in cellulo. Although the performance of the mutant was found to be always superior, the results showed switching behaviors strongly dependent on the nanoenvironment. Thus, in general, assessment of photostability and switching properties of RSFPs should be carried out in real experimental conditions.

  15. Protein specific fluorescent microspheres for labelling a protein

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rembaum, Alan (Inventor)

    1982-01-01

    Highly fluorescent, stable and biocompatible microspheres are obtained by copolymerizing an acrylic monomer containing a covalent bonding group such as hydroxyl, amine or carboxyl, for example, hydroxyethylmethacrylate, with an addition polymerizable fluorescent comonomer such as dansyl allyl amine. A lectin or antibody is bound to the covalent site to provide cell specificity. When the microspheres are added to a cell suspension the marked microspheres will specifically label a cell membrane by binding to a specific receptor site thereon. The labeled membrane can then be detected by fluorescence of the fluorescent monomer.

  16. Protein localization in electron micrographs using fluorescence nanoscopy

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Shigeki; Punge, Annedore; Hollopeter, Gunther; Willig, Katrin I.; Hobson, Robert John; Davis, M. Wayne; Hell, Stefan W.; Jorgensen, Erik M.

    2010-01-01

    A complete portrait of a cell requires a detailed description of its molecular topography: proteins must be linked to particular organelles. Immuno-electron microscopy can reveal locations of proteins with nanometer resolution but is limited by the quality of fixation, the paucity of antibodies, and the inaccessibility of the antigens. Here, we describe correlative fluorescence electron microscopy for the nanoscopic localization of proteins in electron micrographs. Proteins tagged with Citrine or tdEos were expressed in Caenorhabditis elegans, fixed and embedded. Tagged proteins were imaged from ultrathin sections using stimulated emission depletion microscopy (STED) or photoactivated localization microscopy (PALM). Fluorescence was correlated with organelles imaged in electron micrographs from the same sections. These methods were used to successfully localize histones, a mitochondrial protein, and a presynaptic dense projection protein in electron micrographs. PMID:21102453

  17. Exploiting fluorescence for multiplex immunoassays on protein microarrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herbáth, Melinda; Papp, Krisztián; Balogh, Andrea; Matkó, János; Prechl, József

    2014-09-01

    Protein microarray technology is becoming the method of choice for identifying protein interaction partners, detecting specific proteins, carbohydrates and lipids, or for characterizing protein interactions and serum antibodies in a massively parallel manner. Availability of the well-established instrumentation of DNA arrays and development of new fluorescent detection instruments promoted the spread of this technique. Fluorescent detection has the advantage of high sensitivity, specificity, simplicity and wide dynamic range required by most measurements. Fluorescence through specifically designed probes and an increasing variety of detection modes offers an excellent tool for such microarray platforms. Measuring for example the level of antibodies, their isotypes and/or antigen specificity simultaneously can offer more complex and comprehensive information about the investigated biological phenomenon, especially if we take into consideration that hundreds of samples can be measured in a single assay. Not only body fluids, but also cell lysates, extracted cellular components, and intact living cells can be analyzed on protein arrays for monitoring functional responses to printed samples on the surface. As a rapidly evolving area, protein microarray technology offers a great bulk of information and new depth of knowledge. These are the features that endow protein arrays with wide applicability and robust sample analyzing capability. On the whole, protein arrays are emerging new tools not just in proteomics, but glycomics, lipidomics, and are also important for immunological research. In this review we attempt to summarize the technical aspects of planar fluorescent microarray technology along with the description of its main immunological applications.

  18. Quantum dots and fluorescent protein FRET-based biosensors.

    PubMed

    Boeneman, Kelly; Delehanty, James B; Susumu, Kimihiro; Stewart, Michael H; Deschamps, Jeffrey R; Medintz, Igor L

    2012-01-01

    There has been considerable recent interest in the creation of nanoparticle-biomolecule hybrid materials for uses such as in vitro and in vivo biosensing, biological imaging, and drug -delivery. Nanoparticles have a high surface to volume ratio, making them capable of being decorated with -various biomolecules on their surface which retain their biological activity. Techniques to bind these biomolecules to nanoparticle surfaces are also advancing rapidly. Here we demonstrate hybrid materials assembled around CdSe/ZnS core/shell semiconductor quantum dots (QDs). These intrinsically fluorescent materials are conjugated to the fluorescent proteins YFP, mCherry and the light harvesting complex b-phycoerythrin (b-PE). QDs have fluorescent properties that make them ideal as donor fluorophores for Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) while the fluorescent proteins are able to act as FRET acceptors displaying many advantages over organic dyes. We examine FRET interactions between QDs and all three fluorescent proteins. Furthermore, we show QD-mCherry hybrid materials can be utilized for in vitro biosensing of caspase-3 enzymatic activity. We further show that QDs and fluorescent proteins can be conjugated together intracellularly with strong potential for live-cell imaging and biosensing applications. PMID:22101713

  19. Engineering Cells to Improve Protein Expression

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Su; Shiloach, Joseph; Betenbaugh, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    Cellular engineering of bacteria, fungi, insect cells and mammalian cells is a promising methodology to improve recombinant protein production for structural, biochemical, and commercial applications. Increased understanding of the host organism biology has suggested engineering strategies targeting bottlenecks in transcription, translation, protein processing and secretory pathways, as well as cell growth and survival. A combination of metabolic engineering and synthetic biology has been used to improve the properties of cells for protein production, which has resulted in enhanced yields of multiple protein classes. PMID:24704806

  20. mKikGR, a Monomeric Photoswitchable Fluorescent Protein

    PubMed Central

    Kochaniak, Anna B.; Miyawaki, Atsushi; van Oijen, Antoine M.

    2008-01-01

    The recent demonstration and utilization of fluorescent proteins whose fluorescence can be switched on and off has greatly expanded the toolkit of molecular and cell biology. These photoswitchable proteins have facilitated the characterization of specifically tagged molecular species in the cell and have enabled fluorescence imaging of intracellular structures with a resolution far below the classical diffraction limit of light. Applications are limited, however, by the fast photobleaching, slow photoswitching, and oligomerization typical for photoswitchable proteins currently available. Here, we report the molecular cloning and spectroscopic characterization of mKikGR, a monomeric version of the previously reported KikGR that displays high photostability and switching rates. Furthermore, we present single-molecule imaging experiments that demonstrate that individual mKikGR proteins can be localized with a precision of better than 10 nanometers, suggesting their suitability for super-resolution imaging. PMID:19079591

  1. Two-photon excited UV fluorescence for protein crystal detection

    PubMed Central

    Madden, Jeremy T.; DeWalt, Emma L.; Simpson, Garth J.

    2011-01-01

    Two-photon excited ultraviolet fluorescence (TPE-UVF) microscopy is explored for sensitive protein-crystal detection as a complement to second-order nonlinear optical imaging of chiral crystals (SONICC). Like conventional ultraviolet fluorescence (UVF), TPE-UVF generates image contrast based on the intrinsic fluorescence of aromatic residues, generally producing higher fluorescence emission within crystals than the mother liquor by nature of the higher local protein concentration. However, TPE-UVF has several advantages over conventional UVF, including (i) insensitivity to optical scattering, allowing imaging in turbid matrices, (ii) direct compatibility with conventional optical plates and windows by using visible light for excitation, (iii) elimination of potentially damaging out-of-plane UV excitation, (iv) improved signal to noise through background reduction from out-of-plane excitation and (v) relatively simple integration into instrumentation developed for SONICC. PMID:21931215

  2. Expansion Microscopy with Conventional Antibodies and Fluorescent Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Chozinski, Tyler J.; Halpern, Aaron R.; Okawa, Haruhisa; Kim, Hyeon-Jin; Tremel, Grant J.; Wong, Rachel O.L.; Vaughan, Joshua C.

    2016-01-01

    Expansion microscopy is a recently introduced technique in which fluorophores on fixed specimens are linked to a swellable polymer that is physically expanded to enable super-resolution microscopy with ordinary microscopes. We have developed and characterized new methods for linking fluorophores to the polymer that now enable expansion microscopy with conventional fluorescently-labeled antibodies and fluorescent proteins. Our methods simplify the procedure, expand the palette of compatible labels, and will aid in rapid dissemination of the technique. PMID:27064647

  3. An Engineered Split Intein for Photoactivated Protein Trans-Splicing.

    PubMed

    Wong, Stanley; Mosabbir, Abdullah A; Truong, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    Protein splicing is mediated by inteins that auto-catalytically join two separated protein fragments with a peptide bond. Here we engineered a genetically encoded synthetic photoactivatable intein (named LOVInC), by using the light-sensitive LOV2 domain from Avena sativa as a switch to modulate the splicing activity of the split DnaE intein from Nostoc punctiforme. Periodic blue light illumination of LOVInC induced protein splicing activity in mammalian cells. To demonstrate the broad applicability of LOVInC, synthetic protein systems were engineered for the light-induced reassembly of several target proteins such as fluorescent protein markers, a dominant positive mutant of RhoA, caspase-7, and the genetically encoded Ca2+ indicator GCaMP2. Spatial precision of LOVInC was demonstrated by targeting activity to specific mammalian cells. Thus, LOVInC can serve as a general platform for engineering light-based control for modulating the activity of many different proteins. PMID:26317656

  4. Engineering protein scaffolds for protein separation, biocatalysis and nanotechnology applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Fang

    Globally, there is growing appreciation for developing a sustainable economy that uses eco-efficient bio-processes. Biotechnology provides an increasing range of tools for industry to help reduce cost and improve environmental performance. Inspired by the naturally evolved machineries of protein scaffolds and their binding ligands, synthetic protein scaffolds were engineered based on cohesin-dockerin interactions and metal chelating peptides to tackle the challenges and make improvements in three specific areas: (1) protein purification, (2) biofuel cells, and (3) nanomaterial synthesis. The first objective was to develop efficient and cost-effective non-chromatographic purification processes to purify recombinant proteins in an effort to meet the dramatically growing market of protein drugs. In our design, the target protein was genetically fused with a dockerin domain from Clostridium thermocellum and direct purification and recovery was achieved using thermo-responsive elastin-like polypeptide (ELP) scaffold containing the cohesin domain from the same species. By exploiting the highly specific interaction between the dockerin and cohesin domain and the reversible aggregation property of ELP, highly purified and active dockerin-tagged proteins, such as endoglucanase CelA, chloramphenicol acetyl transferase (CAT) and enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP), were recovered directly from crude cell extracts in a single purification step with yields achieving over 90%. Incorporation of a self-cleaving intein domain enabled rapid removal of the affinity tag from the target proteins by another cycle of thermal precipitation. The purification cost can be further reduced by regenerating and recycling the ELP-cohesin capturing scaffolds. However, due to the high binding affinity between cohesin and dockerin domains, the bound dockerin-intein tag cannot be completely disassociated from ELP-cohesin scaffold after binding. Therefore, a truncated dockerin with the calcium

  5. Dynamic Stabilization of Expressed Proteins in Engineered Diatom Biosilica Matrices.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Yijia; Ford, Nicole R; Hecht, Karen A; Roesijadi, Guritno; Squier, Thomas C

    2016-05-18

    Self-assembly of recombinant proteins within the biosilica of living diatoms represents a means to construct functional materials in a reproducible and scalable manner that will enable applications that harness the inherent specificities of proteins to sense and respond to environmental cues. Here we describe the use of a silaffin-derived lysine-rich 39-amino-acid targeting sequence (Sil3T8) that directs a single chain fragment variable (scFv) antibody or an enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) to assemble within the biosilica frustule, resulting in abundance of >200 000 proteins per frustule. Using either a fluorescent ligand bound to the scFv or the intrinsic fluorescence of EGFP, we monitored protein conformational dynamics, accessibility to external quenchers, binding affinity, and conformational stability. Like proteins in solution, proteins within isolated frustules undergo isotropic rotational motion, but with 2-fold increases in rotational correlation times that are indicative of weak macromolecular associations within the biosilica. Solvent accessibilities and high-affinity (pM) binding are comparable to those in solution. In contrast to solution conditions, scFv antibodies within the biosilica matrix retain their binding affinity in the presence of chaotropic agents (i.e., 8 M urea). Together, these results argue that dramatic increases in protein conformational stability within the biosilica matrices arise through molecular crowding, acting to retain native protein folds and associated functionality with the potential to allow the utility of engineered proteins under a range of harsh environmental conditions associated with environmental sensing and industrial catalytic transformations. PMID:27139003

  6. Extrinsic Fluorescent Dyes as Tools for Protein Characterization

    PubMed Central

    Hawe, Andrea; Sutter, Marc

    2008-01-01

    Noncovalent, extrinsic fluorescent dyes are applied in various fields of protein analysis, e.g. to characterize folding intermediates, measure surface hydrophobicity, and detect aggregation or fibrillation. The main underlying mechanisms, which explain the fluorescence properties of many extrinsic dyes, are solvent relaxation processes and (twisted) intramolecular charge transfer reactions, which are affected by the environment and by interactions of the dyes with proteins. In recent time, the use of extrinsic fluorescent dyes such as ANS, Bis-ANS, Nile Red, Thioflavin T and others has increased, because of their versatility, sensitivity and suitability for high-throughput screening. The intention of this review is to give an overview of available extrinsic dyes, explain their spectral properties, and show illustrative examples of their various applications in protein characterization. PMID:18172579

  7. A palette of fluorescent proteins optimized for diverse cellular environments

    PubMed Central

    Costantini, Lindsey M.; Baloban, Mikhail; Markwardt, Michele L.; Rizzo, Mark; Guo, Feng; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Snapp, Erik L.

    2015-01-01

    To perform quantitative live cell imaging, investigators require fluorescent reporters that accurately report protein localization and levels, while minimally perturbing the cell. Yet, within the biochemically distinct environments of cellular organelles, popular fluorescent proteins (FPs), including EGFP, can be unreliable for quantitative imaging, resulting in underestimation of protein levels and incorrect localization. Specifically, within the secretory pathway, significant populations of FPs misfold and fail to fluoresce due to non-native disulphide bond formation. Furthermore, transmembrane FP fusion constructs can disrupt organelle architecture due to oligomerizing tendencies of numerous common FPs. Here, we describe a powerful set of bright and inert FPs optimized for use in multiple cellular compartments, especially oxidizing environments and biological membranes. Also, we provide new insights into use of red FPs in the secretory pathway. Our monomeric "oxFPs" finally resolve long standing, underappreciated, and important problems of cell biology and should be useful for a number of applications. PMID:26158227

  8. High-throughput analysis and protein engineering using microcapillary arrays.

    PubMed

    Chen, Bob; Lim, Sungwon; Kannan, Arvind; Alford, Spencer C; Sunden, Fanny; Herschlag, Daniel; Dimov, Ivan K; Baer, Thomas M; Cochran, Jennifer R

    2016-02-01

    We describe a multipurpose technology platform, termed μSCALE (microcapillary single-cell analysis and laser extraction), that enables massively parallel, quantitative biochemical and biophysical measurements on millions of protein variants expressed from yeast or bacteria. μSCALE spatially segregates single cells within a microcapillary array, enabling repeated imaging, cell growth and protein expression. We performed high-throughput analysis of cells and their protein products using a range of fluorescent assays, including binding-affinity measurements and dynamic enzymatic assays. A precise laser-based extraction method allows rapid recovery of live clones and their genetic material from microcapillaries for further study. With μSCALE, we discovered a new antibody against a clinical cancer target, evolved a fluorescent protein biosensor and engineered an enzyme to reduce its sensitivity to its inhibitor. These protein analysis and engineering applications each have unique assay requirements and different host organisms, highlighting the flexibility and technical capabilities of the μSCALE platform. PMID:26641932

  9. Structural Determinants of Improved Fluorescence in a Family of Bacteriophytochrome-Based Infrared Fluorescent Proteins: Insights from Continuum Electrostatic Calculations and Molecular Dynamics Simulations.

    PubMed

    Feliks, Mikolaj; Lafaye, Céline; Shu, Xiaokun; Royant, Antoine; Field, Martin

    2016-08-01

    Using X-ray crystallography, continuum electrostatic calculations, and molecular dynamics simulations, we have studied the structure, protonation behavior, and dynamics of the biliverdin chromophore and its molecular environment in a series of genetically engineered infrared fluorescent proteins (IFPs) based on the chromophore-binding domain of the Deinococcus radiodurans bacteriophytochrome. Our study suggests that the experimentally observed enhancement of fluorescent properties results from the improved rigidity and planarity of the biliverdin chromophore, in particular of the first two pyrrole rings neighboring the covalent linkage to the protein. We propose that the increases in the levels of both motion and bending of the chromophore out of planarity favor the decrease in fluorescence. The chromophore-binding pocket in some of the studied proteins, in particular the weakly fluorescent parent protein, is shown to be readily accessible to water molecules from the solvent. These waters entering the chromophore region form hydrogen bond networks that affect the otherwise planar conformation of the first three rings of the chromophore. On the basis of our simulations, the enhancement of fluorescence in IFPs can be achieved either by reducing the mobility of water molecules in the vicinity of the chromophore or by limiting the interactions of the nearby protein residues with the chromophore. Finally, simulations performed at both low and neutral pH values highlight differences in the dynamics of the chromophore and shed light on the mechanism of fluorescence loss at low pH. PMID:27471775

  10. Integrated imaging instrument for self-calibrated fluorescence protein microarrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddington, A. P.; Monroe, M. R.; Ünlü, M. S.

    2013-10-01

    Protein microarrays, or multiplexed and high-throughput assays, monitor multiple protein binding events to facilitate the understanding of disease progression and cell physiology. Fluorescence imaging is a popular method to detect proteins captured by immobilized probes with high sensitivity and specificity. Reliability of fluorescence assays depends on achieving minimal inter- and intra-assay probe immobilization variation, an ongoing challenge for protein microarrays. Therefore, it is desirable to establish a label-free method to quantify the probe density prior to target incubation to calibrate the fluorescence readout. Previously, a silicon oxide on silicon chip design was introduced to enhance the fluorescence signal and enable interferometric imaging to self-calibrate the signal with the immobilized probe density. In this paper, an integrated interferometric reflectance imaging sensor and wide-field fluorescence instrument is introduced for sensitive and calibrated microarray measurements. This platform is able to analyze a 2.5 mm × 3.4 mm area, or 200 spots (100 μm diameter with 200 μm pitch), in a single field-of-view.

  11. Imaging cellular dynamics in vivo with multicolor fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoffman, Robert M.

    2005-04-01

    The new field of in vivo cell biology is being developed with multi-colored fluorescent proteins. With the use of fluorescent proteins, the behavior of individual cells can be visualized in the living animal. An example of the new cell biology is dual-color fluorescence imaging using red fluorescent protein (RFP)-expressing tumors transplanted in green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing transgenic mice. These models show with great clarity the details of the tumor-stroma cell-cell interaction especially tumor-induced angiogenesis, tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, stromal fibroblasts and macrophages. Another example is the color-coding of cells with RFP or GFP such that both cell types and their interaction can be simultaneously visualized in vivo. Stem cells can also be visualized and tracked in vivo with fluorescent proteins. Mice, in which the regulatory elements of the stem-cell marker nestin drive GFP expression, can be used to visualize hair follicle stem cells including their ability to form hair follicles as well as blood vessels. Dual-color cells expressing GFP in the nucleus and RFP in the cytoplasm enable real-time visualization of nuclear-cytoplasm dynamics including cell cycle events and apoptosis. Dual-color cells also enable the in vivo imaging of cell and nuclear deformation as well as trafficking in capillaries in living animals. Multiple-color labeling of cells will enable multiple events to be simultaneously visualized in vivo including cell-cell interaction, gene expression, ion fluxes, protein and organelle trafficking, chromosome dynamics and numerous other processes currently still studied in vitro.

  12. Live-cell multiphoton fluorescence correlation spectroscopy with an improved large Stokes shift fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Yinghua; Meurer, Matthias; Raghavan, Sarada; Rebane, Aleksander; Lindquist, Jake R.; Santos, Sofia; Kats, Ilia; Davidson, Michael W.; Mazitschek, Ralph; Hughes, Thomas E.; Drobizhev, Mikhail; Knop, Michael; Shah, Jagesh V.

    2015-01-01

    We report an improved variant of mKeima, a monomeric long Stokes shift red fluorescent protein, hmKeima8.5. The increased intracellular brightness and large Stokes shift (∼180 nm) make it an excellent partner with teal fluorescent protein (mTFP1) for multiphoton, multicolor applications. Excitation of this pair by a single multiphoton excitation wavelength (MPE, 850 nm) yields well-separable emission peaks (∼120-nm separation). Using this pair, we measure homo- and hetero-oligomerization interactions in living cells via multiphoton excitation fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (MPE-FCS). Using tandem dimer proteins and small-molecule inducible dimerization domains, we demonstrate robust and quantitative detection of intracellular protein–protein interactions. We also use MPE-FCCS to detect drug–protein interactions in the intracellular environment using a Coumarin 343 (C343)-conjugated drug and hmKeima8.5 as a fluorescence pair. The mTFP1/hmKeima8.5 and C343/hmKeima8.5 combinations, together with our calibration constructs, provide a practical and broadly applicable toolbox for the investigation of molecular interactions in the cytoplasm of living cells. PMID:25877871

  13. Quantitative Fluorescence Studies in Living Cells: Extending Fluorescence Fluctuation Spectroscopy to Peripheral Membrane Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Elizabeth Myhra

    The interactions of peripheral membrane proteins with both membrane lipids and proteins are vital for many cellular processes including membrane trafficking, cellular signaling, and cell growth/regulation. Building accurate biophysical models of these processes requires quantitative characterization of the behavior of peripheral membrane proteins, yet methods to quantify their interactions inside living cells are very limited. Because peripheral membrane proteins usually exist both in membrane-bound and cytoplasmic forms, the separation of these two populations is a key challenge. This thesis aims at addressing this challenge by extending fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy (FFS) to simultaneously measure the oligomeric state of peripheral membrane proteins in the cytoplasm and at the plasma membrane. We developed a new method based on z-scan FFS that accounts for the fluorescence contributions from cytoplasmic and membrane layers by incorporating a fluorescence intensity z-scan through the cell. H-Ras-EGFP served as a model system to demonstrate the feasibility of the technique. The resolvability and stability of z-scanning was determined as well as the oligomeric state of H-Ras-EGFP at the plasma membrane and in the cytoplasm. Further, we successfully characterized the binding affinity of a variety of proteins to the plasma membrane by quantitative analysis of the z-scan fluorescence intensity profile. This analysis method, which we refer to as z-scan fluorescence profile deconvoution, was further used in combination with dual-color competition studies to determine the lipid specificity of protein binding. Finally, we applied z-scan FFS to provide insight into the early assembly steps of the HTLV-1 retrovirus.

  14. Electronic circular dichroism of fluorescent proteins: a computational study.

    PubMed

    Pikulska, Anna; Steindal, Arnfinn Hykkerud; Beerepoot, Maarten T P; Pecul, Magdalena

    2015-02-26

    The electronic circular dichroism (ECD) properties of the green fluorescent protein and other fluorescent proteins have been calculated with density functional theory. The influence of different embedding models on the ECD signal of the chromophore has been investigated by modeling the protein environment by the polarizable continuum model (QM/PCM), by the polarizable embedding model (PE-QM/MM), by treating the minimal environment quantum mechanically at the same footing as the chromophore (QM/QM), and by adding the remaining part of the protein by means of PCM (QM/QM/PCM). The rotatory strength is found to be more sensitive than the oscillatory strength to changes in the geometry of the chromophore and its surroundings and to the type of embedding model used. In general, explicit embedding of the surrounding protein (PE-QM/MM or QM/QM) induces an increase in the rotatory strength of the chromophore. Explicit inclusion of the whole protein through polarizable embedding is found to be an affordable embedding model that gives the correct sign of the rotatory strength for all fluorescent proteins. PCM is useful as a first approximation to protein environment effects, but as a rule seems to underestimate the rotatory strength. PMID:25646666

  15. Quantitative measurement of intracellular protein dynamics using photobleaching or photoactivation of fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Tomoki; Nagai, Takeharu

    2014-12-01

    Unlike in vitro protein dynamics, intracellular protein dynamics are intricately regulated by protein-protein interactions or interactions between proteins and other cellular components, including nucleic acids, the plasma membrane and the cytoskeleton. Alteration of these dynamics plays a crucial role in physiological phenomena such as gene expression and cell division. Live-cell imaging via microscopy with the inherent properties of fluorescent proteins, i.e. photobleaching and photoconversion, or fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, provides insight into the movement of proteins and their interactions with cellular components. This article reviews techniques based on photo-induced changes in the physicochemical properties of fluorescent proteins to measure protein dynamics inside living cells, and it also discusses the strengths and weaknesses of these techniques. PMID:25268018

  16. Mapping fast protein folding with multiple-site fluorescent probes

    PubMed Central

    Prigozhin, Maxim B.; Chao, Shu-Han; Sukenik, Shahar; Pogorelov, Taras V.; Gruebele, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Fast protein folding involves complex dynamics in many degrees of freedom, yet microsecond folding experiments provide only low-resolution structural information. We enhance the structural resolution of the five-helix bundle protein λ6–85 by engineering into it three fluorescent tryptophan–tyrosine contact probes. The probes report on distances between three different helix pairs: 1–2, 1–3, and 3–2. Temperature jump relaxation experiments on these three mutants reveal two different kinetic timescales: a slower timescale for 1–3 and a faster one for the two contacts involving helix 2. We hypothesize that these differences arise from a single folding mechanism that forms contacts on different timescales, and not from changes of mechanism due to adding the probes. To test this hypothesis, we analyzed the corresponding three distances in one published single-trajectory all-atom molecular-dynamics simulation of a similar mutant. Autocorrelation analysis of the trajectory reveals the same “slow” and “fast” distance change as does experiment, but on a faster timescale; smoothing the trajectory in time shows that this ordering is robust and persists into the microsecond folding timescale. Structural investigation of the all-atom computational data suggests that helix 2 misfolds to produce a short-lived off-pathway trap, in agreement with the experimental finding that the 1–2 and 3–2 distances involving helix 2 contacts form a kinetic grouping distinct from 1 to 3. Our work demonstrates that comparison between experiment and simulation can be extended to several order parameters, providing a stronger mechanistic test. PMID:26080403

  17. Protein rotational motion in solution measured by polarized fluorescence depletion.

    PubMed Central

    Yoshida, T M; Barisas, B G

    1986-01-01

    A microscope-based system is described for directly measuring protein rotational motion in viscous environments such as cell membranes by polarized fluorescence depletion (PFD). Proteins labeled with fluorophores having a high quantum yield for triplet formation, such as eosin isothiocyanate (EITC), are examined anaerobically in a fluorescence microscope. An acousto-optic modulator generates a several-microsecond pulse of linearly polarized light which produces an orientationally-asymmetric depletion of ground state fluorescence in the sample. When the sample is then probed with light polarized parallel to the excitation pulse, fluorescence recovers over 0-1,000 microseconds as the sum of two exponentials. One exponential corresponds to triplet decay and the other to the rotational relaxation. An exciting pulse perpendicular to the probe beam is then applied. Fluorescence recovery following this pulse is the difference of the same two exponentials. Equations for fluorescence recovery kinetics to be expected in various experimentally significant cases are derived. Least-squares analysis using these equations then permits the triplet lifetime and rotational correlation time to be determined directly from PFD data. Instrumentation for PFD measurements is discussed that permits photobleaching recovery measurements of lateral diffusion coefficients using the same microscope system. With this apparatus, both rotational and translational diffusion coefficients (Dr, Dt) were measured for EITC-labeled bovine serum albumin in glycerol solutions. Values obtained for Dr and Dt are discussed in light of both the PFD models and the experimental system. PMID:3730506

  18. Fluorescent Protein Nanowire-Mediated Protein Microarrays for Multiplexed and Highly Sensitive Pathogen Detection.

    PubMed

    Men, Dong; Zhou, Juan; Li, Wei; Leng, Yan; Chen, Xinwen; Tao, Shengce; Zhang, Xian-En

    2016-07-13

    Protein microarrays are powerful tools for high-throughput and simultaneous detection of different target molecules in complex biological samples. However, the sensitivity of conventional fluorescence-labeling protein detection methods is limited by the availability of signal molecules for binding to the target molecule. Here, we built a multifunctional fluorescent protein nanowire (FNw) by harnessing self-assembly of yeast amyloid protein. The FNw integrated a large number of fluorescent molecules, thereby enhancing the fluorescent signal output in target detection. The FNw was then combined with protein microarray technology to detect proteins derived from two pathogens, including influenza virus (hemagglutinin 1, HA1) and human immunodeficiency virus (p24 and gp120). The resulting detection sensitivity achieved a 100-fold improvement over a commercially available detection reagent. PMID:27315221

  19. Changing blue fluorescent protein to green fluorescent protein using chemical RNA editing as a novel strategy in genetic restoration.

    PubMed

    Vu, Luyen T; Nguyen, Thanh T K; Alam, Shafiul; Sakamoto, Takashi; Fujimoto, Kenzo; Suzuki, Hitoshi; Tsukahara, Toshifumi

    2015-11-01

    Using the transition from cytosine of BFP (blue fluorescent protein) gene to uridine of GFP (green fluorescent protein) gene at position 199 as a model, we successfully controlled photochemical RNA editing to effect site-directed deamination of cytidine (C) to uridine (U). Oligodeoxynucleotides (ODNs) containing 5'-carboxyvinyl-2'-deoxyuridine ((CV) U) were used for reversible photoligation, and single-stranded 100-nt BFP DNA and in vitro-transcribed full-length BFP mRNA were the targets. Photo-cross-linking with the responsive ODNs was performed using UV (366 nm) irradiation, which was followed by heat treatment, and the cross-linked nucleotide was cleaved through photosplitting (UV, 312 nm). The products were analyzed using restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) and fluorescence measurements. Western blotting and fluorescence-analysis results revealed that in vitro-translated proteins were synthesized from mRNAs after site-directed RNA editing. We detected substantial amounts of the target-base-substituted fragment using RFLP and observed highly reproducible spectra of the transition-GFP signal using fluorescence spectroscopy, which indicated protein stability. ODNc restored approximately 10% of the C-to-U transition. Thus, we successfully used non-enzymatic site-directed deamination for genetic restoration in vitro. In the near future, in vivo studies that include cultured cells and model animals will be conducted to treat genetic disorders. PMID:26031895

  20. Recombinant aequorin and green fluorescent protein as valuable tools in the study of cell signalling.

    PubMed Central

    Chiesa, A; Rapizzi, E; Tosello, V; Pinton, P; de Virgilio, M; Fogarty, K E; Rizzuto, R

    2001-01-01

    Luminous proteins include primary light producers, such as aequorin, and secondary photoproteins that in some organisms red-shift light emission for better penetration in space. When expressed in heterologous systems, both types of proteins may act as versatile reporters capable of monitoring phenomena as diverse as calcium homoeostasis, protein sorting, gene expression, and so on. The Ca(2+)-sensitive photoprotein aequorin was targeted to defined intracellular locations (organelles, such as mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, sarcoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus and nucleus, and cytoplasmic regions, such as the bulk cytosol and the subplasmalemmal rim), and was used to analyse Ca(2+) homoeostasis at the subcellular level. We will discuss this application, reviewing its advantages and disadvantages and the experimental procedure. The applications of green fluorescent protein (GFP) are even broader. Indeed, the ability to molecularly engineer and recombinantly express a strongly fluorescent probe has provided a powerful tool for investigating a wide variety of biological events in live cells (e.g. tracking of endogenous proteins, labelling of intracellular structures, analysing promoter activity etc.). More recently, the demonstration that, using appropriate mutants and/or fusion proteins, GFP fluorescence can become sensitive to physiological parameters or activities (ion concentration, protease activity, etc.) has further expanded its applications and made GFP the favourite probe of cell biologists. We will here present two applications in the field of cell signalling, i.e. the use of GFP chimaeras for studying the recruitment of protein kinase C isoforms and the activity of intracellular proteases. PMID:11256942

  1. Recombinant aequorin and green fluorescent protein as valuable tools in the study of cell signalling.

    PubMed

    Chiesa, A; Rapizzi, E; Tosello, V; Pinton, P; de Virgilio, M; Fogarty, K E; Rizzuto, R

    2001-04-01

    Luminous proteins include primary light producers, such as aequorin, and secondary photoproteins that in some organisms red-shift light emission for better penetration in space. When expressed in heterologous systems, both types of proteins may act as versatile reporters capable of monitoring phenomena as diverse as calcium homoeostasis, protein sorting, gene expression, and so on. The Ca(2+)-sensitive photoprotein aequorin was targeted to defined intracellular locations (organelles, such as mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, sarcoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus and nucleus, and cytoplasmic regions, such as the bulk cytosol and the subplasmalemmal rim), and was used to analyse Ca(2+) homoeostasis at the subcellular level. We will discuss this application, reviewing its advantages and disadvantages and the experimental procedure. The applications of green fluorescent protein (GFP) are even broader. Indeed, the ability to molecularly engineer and recombinantly express a strongly fluorescent probe has provided a powerful tool for investigating a wide variety of biological events in live cells (e.g. tracking of endogenous proteins, labelling of intracellular structures, analysing promoter activity etc.). More recently, the demonstration that, using appropriate mutants and/or fusion proteins, GFP fluorescence can become sensitive to physiological parameters or activities (ion concentration, protease activity, etc.) has further expanded its applications and made GFP the favourite probe of cell biologists. We will here present two applications in the field of cell signalling, i.e. the use of GFP chimaeras for studying the recruitment of protein kinase C isoforms and the activity of intracellular proteases. PMID:11256942

  2. An improved cyan fluorescent protein variant useful for FRET.

    PubMed

    Rizzo, Mark A; Springer, Gerald H; Granada, Butch; Piston, David W

    2004-04-01

    Many genetically encoded biosensors use Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) between fluorescent proteins to report biochemical phenomena in living cells. Most commonly, the enhanced cyan fluorescent protein (ECFP) is used as the donor fluorophore, coupled with one of several yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) variants as the acceptor. ECFP is used despite several spectroscopic disadvantages, namely a low quantum yield, a low extinction coefficient and a fluorescence lifetime that is best fit by a double exponential. To improve the characteristics of ECFP for FRET measurements, we used a site-directed mutagenesis approach to overcome these disadvantages. The resulting variant, which we named Cerulean (ECFP/S72A/Y145A/H148D), has a greatly improved quantum yield, a higher extinction coefficient and a fluorescence lifetime that is best fit by a single exponential. Cerulean is 2.5-fold brighter than ECFP and replacement of ECFP with Cerulean substantially improves the signal-to-noise ratio of a FRET-based sensor for glucokinase activation. PMID:14990965

  3. Fluorescence studies of beer protein uptake by silica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Apperson, Kathleen; Birch, David J. S.; Leiper, Kenneth; McKeown, Ian P.

    2001-05-01

    Fluorescence has been investigated with respect to new methods for monitoring protein uptake by silica, with particular attention being given to haze forming proteins and foam proteins present in beer. These are of particular interest to the brewing industry as an important aspect of the brewing process is the prevention of chill haze formation. This is necessary in order to maintain the clarity of the beer and to extend the shelf life. Chill haze, which is a result of the interaction of certain proteins with some polyphenols, can be prevented by the removal of one or both of these constituents.

  4. Determination of proteins by fluorescence quenching of Magdala Red

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Wen-wu; Gong, Guo-quan; Song, Yu-min

    2000-04-01

    Magdala Red (MR) binding to protein causes a decrease in the fluorescence intensity of MR at 556 nm. Based on this, a new quantitative determination method for proteins is developed. The linear range of this assay is 0.1-4.0 μg ml -1 of Bovine Serum albumin (BSA). The measurements can be made easily on a common fluorimeter. The reaction between MR and proteins is completed in 1 min, and the fluorescence intensity is stable for at least 2 h. There is little or no interference from amino acids and most metal ions. The proposed method has been applied to the determination of protein in milk powder and soybean milk powder and the results are in agreement with the results by the other methods.

  5. Two-photon directed evolution of green fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    Stoltzfus, Caleb R.; Barnett, Lauren M.; Drobizhev, Mikhail; Wicks, Geoffrey; Mikhaylov, Alexander; Hughes, Thomas E.; Rebane, Aleksander

    2015-01-01

    Directed evolution has been used extensively to improve the properties of a variety of fluorescent proteins (FPs). Evolutionary strategies, however, have not yet been used to improve the two-photon absorption (2PA) properties of a fluorescent protein, properties that are important for two-photon imaging in living tissues, including the brain. Here we demonstrate a technique for quantitatively screening the two-photon excited fluorescence (2PEF) efficiency and 2PA cross section of tens of thousands of mutant FPs expressed in E. coli colonies. We use this procedure to move EGFP through three rounds of two-photon directed evolution leading to new variants showing up to a 50% enhancement in peak 2PA cross section and brightness within the near-IR tissue transparency wavelength range. PMID:26145791

  6. Two-photon directed evolution of green fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stoltzfus, Caleb R.; Barnett, Lauren M.; Drobizhev, Mikhail; Wicks, Geoffrey; Mikhaylov, Alexander; Hughes, Thomas E.; Rebane, Aleksander

    2015-07-01

    Directed evolution has been used extensively to improve the properties of a variety of fluorescent proteins (FPs). Evolutionary strategies, however, have not yet been used to improve the two-photon absorption (2PA) properties of a fluorescent protein, properties that are important for two-photon imaging in living tissues, including the brain. Here we demonstrate a technique for quantitatively screening the two-photon excited fluorescence (2PEF) efficiency and 2PA cross section of tens of thousands of mutant FPs expressed in E. coli colonies. We use this procedure to move EGFP through three rounds of two-photon directed evolution leading to new variants showing up to a 50% enhancement in peak 2PA cross section and brightness within the near-IR tissue transparency wavelength range.

  7. Broadband photon pair generation in green fluorescent proteins through spontaneous four-wave mixing

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Siyuan; Thomas, Abu; Corzo, Neil V.; Kumar, Prem; Huang, Yuping; Lee, Kim Fook

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies in quantum biology suggest that quantum mechanics help us to explore quantum processes in biological system. Here, we demonstrate generation of photon pairs through spontaneous four-wave mixing process in naturally occurring fluorescent proteins. We develop a general empirical method for analyzing the relative strength of nonlinear optical interaction processes in five different organic fluorophores. Our results indicate that the generation of photon pairs in green fluorescent proteins is subject to less background noises than in other fluorophores, leading to a coincidence-to-accidental ratio ~145. As such proteins can be genetically engineered and fused to many biological cells, our experiment enables a new platform for quantum information processing in a biological environment such as biomimetic quantum networks and quantum sensors. PMID:27076032

  8. Broadband photon pair generation in green fluorescent proteins through spontaneous four-wave mixing.

    PubMed

    Shi, Siyuan; Thomas, Abu; Corzo, Neil V; Kumar, Prem; Huang, Yuping; Lee, Kim Fook

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies in quantum biology suggest that quantum mechanics help us to explore quantum processes in biological system. Here, we demonstrate generation of photon pairs through spontaneous four-wave mixing process in naturally occurring fluorescent proteins. We develop a general empirical method for analyzing the relative strength of nonlinear optical interaction processes in five different organic fluorophores. Our results indicate that the generation of photon pairs in green fluorescent proteins is subject to less background noises than in other fluorophores, leading to a coincidence-to-accidental ratio ~145. As such proteins can be genetically engineered and fused to many biological cells, our experiment enables a new platform for quantum information processing in a biological environment such as biomimetic quantum networks and quantum sensors. PMID:27076032

  9. Broadband photon pair generation in green fluorescent proteins through spontaneous four-wave mixing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Siyuan; Thomas, Abu; Corzo, Neil V.; Kumar, Prem; Huang, Yuping; Lee, Kim Fook

    2016-04-01

    Recent studies in quantum biology suggest that quantum mechanics help us to explore quantum processes in biological system. Here, we demonstrate generation of photon pairs through spontaneous four-wave mixing process in naturally occurring fluorescent proteins. We develop a general empirical method for analyzing the relative strength of nonlinear optical interaction processes in five different organic fluorophores. Our results indicate that the generation of photon pairs in green fluorescent proteins is subject to less background noises than in other fluorophores, leading to a coincidence-to-accidental ratio ~145. As such proteins can be genetically engineered and fused to many biological cells, our experiment enables a new platform for quantum information processing in a biological environment such as biomimetic quantum networks and quantum sensors.

  10. Electrotransformation of Bacillus mojavensis with fluorescent protein markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Gram-positive endophytic bacteria are difficult to transform. To study endophytic interactions between Bacillus mojavensis and maize, a method was developed to transform this species by electroporation with three fluorescent protein expressing integrative plasmids: pSG1154, pSG1192, and pSG1193. The...

  11. Development of a Green Fluorescent Protein-Based Laboratory Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Larkin, Patrick D.; Hartberg, Yasha

    2005-01-01

    A laboratory curriculum has been designed for an undergraduate biochemistry course that focuses on the investigation of the green fluorescent protein (GFP). The sequence of procedures extends from analysis of the DNA sequence through PCR amplification, recombinant plasmid DNA synthesis, bacterial transformation, expression, isolation, and…

  12. Cathodoluminescence and Electron-Induced Fluorescence Enhancement of Enhanced Green Fluorescent Protein.

    PubMed

    Nagayama, Kuniaki; Onuma, Tsubasa; Ueno, Ryosuke; Tamehiro, Katsuyuki; Minoda, Hiroki

    2016-02-18

    Becaues the spatial resolution of fluorescence microscopy is not high enough to study the molecular level of relationship between the structure and function of biological specimens, correlative light and electron microscopy has been used for this purpose. Another possibility for a high-resolution light microscopy is cathodoluminescence microscopy. Here, we report a new phenomenon, the electron-induced activation of luminescence (cathodoluminescence) and electron-enhanced fluorescence for the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP). This was found using our recently developed hybrid fluorescence and electron microscopy. Contrary to the past reports, which showed a degradation of organic compounds by electron irradiation, stable cathodoluminescence emitted from an organic molecule, EGFP, has been observed using the hybrid microscopy. Addition of the glycerol promoted the fluorescence enhancement of EGFP probably due to the change in the electronic state density of excitation channels from the ground to the excited state or of relaxation channels from the excited to the emission state. Stable cathodoluminescence and enhanced fluorescence of the EGFP may introduce a cathodoluminescence microscopy, which will increase the variety of the imaging to investigate the biological compounds. PMID:26849242

  13. Engineered Proteins: Redox Properties and Their Applications

    PubMed Central

    Prabhulkar, Shradha; Tian, Hui; Wang, Xiaotang; Zhu, Jun-Jie

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Oxidoreductases and metalloproteins, representing more than one third of all known proteins, serve as significant catalysts for numerous biological processes that involve electron transfers such as photosynthesis, respiration, metabolism, and molecular signaling. The functional properties of the oxidoreductases/metalloproteins are determined by the nature of their redox centers. Protein engineering is a powerful approach that is used to incorporate biological and abiological redox cofactors as well as novel enzymes and redox proteins with predictable structures and desirable functions for important biological and chemical applications. The methods of protein engineering, mainly rational design, directed evolution, protein surface modifications, and domain shuffling, have allowed the creation and study of a number of redox proteins. This review presents a selection of engineered redox proteins achieved through these methods, resulting in a manipulation in redox potentials, an increase in electron-transfer efficiency, and an expansion of native proteins by de novo design. Such engineered/modified redox proteins with desired properties have led to a broad spectrum of practical applications, ranging from biosensors, biofuel cells, to pharmaceuticals and hybrid catalysis. Glucose biosensors are one of the most successful products in enzyme electrochemistry, with reconstituted glucose oxidase achieving effective electrical communication with the sensor electrode; direct electron-transfer-type biofuel cells are developed to avoid thermodynamic loss and mediator leakage; and fusion proteins of P450s and redox partners make the biocatalytic generation of drug metabolites possible. In summary, this review includes the properties and applications of the engineered redox proteins as well as their significance and great potential in the exploration of bioelectrochemical sensing devices. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 17, 1796–1822. PMID:22435347

  14. Natural and Genetically Engineered Proteins for Tissue Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Gomes, Sílvia; Leonor, Isabel B.; Mano, João F.; Reis, Rui L.

    2011-01-01

    To overcome the limitations of traditionally used autografts, allografts and, to a lesser extent, synthetic materials, there is the need to develop a new generation of scaffolds with adequate mechanical and structural support, control of cell attachment, migration, proliferation and differentiation and with bio-resorbable features. This suite of properties would allow the body to heal itself at the same rate as implant degradation. Genetic engineering offers a route to this level of control of biomaterial systems. The possibility of expressing biological components in nature and to modify or bioengineer them further, offers a path towards multifunctional biomaterial systems. This includes opportunities to generate new protein sequences, new self-assembling peptides or fusions of different bioactive domains or protein motifs. New protein sequences with tunable properties can be generated that can be used as new biomaterials. In this review we address some of the most frequently used proteins for tissue engineering and biomedical applications and describe the techniques most commonly used to functionalize protein-based biomaterials by combining them with bioactive molecules to enhance biological performance. We also highlight the use of genetic engineering, for protein heterologous expression and the synthesis of new protein-based biopolymers, focusing the advantages of these functionalized biopolymers when compared with their counterparts extracted directly from nature and modified by techniques such as physical adsorption or chemical modification. PMID:22058578

  15. Engineering nanoparticle-protein associations for protein crystal nucleation and nanoparticle arrangement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benoit, Denise N.

    Engineering the nanoparticle - protein association offers a new way to form protein crystals as well as new approaches for arrangement of nanoparticles. Central to this control is the nanoparticle surface. By conjugating polymers on the surface with controlled molecular weights many properties of the nanoparticle can be changed including its size, stability in buffers and the association of proteins with its surface. Large molecular weight poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) coatings allow for weak associations between proteins and nanoparticles. These interactions can lead to changes in how proteins crystallize. In particular, they decrease the time to nucleation and expand the range of conditions over which protein crystals form. Interestingly, when PEG chain lengths are too short then protein association is minimized and these effects are not observed. One important feature of protein crystals nucleated with nanoparticles is that the nanoparticles are incorporated into the crystals. What results are nanoparticles placed at well-defined distances in composite protein-nanoparticle crystals. Crystals on the size scale of 10 - 100 micrometers exhibit optical absorbance, fluorescence and super paramagnetic behavior derivative from the incorporated nanomaterials. The arrangement of nanoparticles into three dimensional arrays also gives rise to new and interesting physical and chemical properties, such as fluorescence enhancement and varied magnetic response. In addition, anisotropic nanomaterials aligned throughout the composite crystal have polarization dependent optical properties.

  16. Green fluorescent protein functions as a reporter for protein localization in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Feilmeier, B J; Iseminger, G; Schroeder, D; Webber, H; Phillips, G J

    2000-07-01

    The use of green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a reporter for protein localization in Escherichia coli was explored by creating gene fusions between malE (encoding maltose-binding protein [MBP]) and a variant of gfp optimized for fluorescence in bacteria (GFPuv). These constructs encode hybrid proteins composed of GFP fused to the carboxy-terminal end of MBP. Fluorescence was not detected when the hybrid protein was synthesized with the MBP signal sequence. In contrast, when the MBP signal sequence was deleted, fluorescence was observed. Cell fractionation studies showed that the fluorescent MBP-GFP hybrid protein was localized in the cytoplasm, whereas the nonfluorescent version was localized to the periplasmic space. Smaller MBP-GFP hybrid proteins, however, exhibited abnormal fractionation. Expression of the gene fusions in different sec mutants, as well as signal sequence processing assays, confirmed that the periplasmically localized hybrid proteins were exported by the sec-dependent pathway. The distinction between fluorescent and nonfluorescent colonies was exploited as a scorable phenotype to isolate malE signal sequence mutations. While expression of hybrid proteins comprised of full-length MBP did not result in overproduction lethality characteristic of some exported beta-galactosidase hybrid proteins, synthesis of shorter, exported hybrid proteins was toxic to the cells. Purification of MBP-GFP hybrid protein from the different cellular compartments indicated that GFP is improperly folded when localized outside of the cytoplasm. These results suggest that GFP could serve as a useful reporter for genetic analysis of bacterial protein export and of protein folding. PMID:10869087

  17. Secretion of green fluorescent protein from recombinant baculovirus-infected insect cells.

    PubMed

    Laukkanen, M L; Oker-Blom, C; Keinänen, K

    1996-09-24

    Trichoplusia ni (High Five) and Spodoptera frugiperda (Sf21) cells were engineered for expression of epitope (Flag)-tagged signal peptide-green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusions to examine the suitability of GFP as a secretory marker. The recombinant baculovirus-infected cells became fluorescent, and the High Five cells but not Sf21 cells secreted GFP in the culture medium as detected by the presence in the culture supernatant of a Flag-immunoreactive 30-kDa species and the characteristic 510-nm GFP fluorescence peak. Signal peptides derived from ecdysteroid UDP-glucosyltransferase of Autographa californica nuclear polyhedrosis virus and from rat brain glutamate receptor were both able to promote secretion of GFP. GFP may thus be used as a research tool in the study of the secretory process in insect cells both in cell biology and in biotechnological applications. PMID:8831686

  18. Protein immobilization and fluorescence quenching on polydopamine thin films.

    PubMed

    Chen, Daqun; Zhao, Lei; Hu, Weihua

    2016-09-01

    Mussel inspired polydopamine (PDA) film has attracted great interest as a versatile functional coating for biomolecule immobilization in various bio-related devices. However, the details regarding the interaction between a protein and PDA film remain unclear. Particularly, there is very limited knowledge regarding the protein immobilization on PDA film, even though it is of essential importance in various fields. The situation is even more complicated if considering the fact that quite a number of approaches (e.g., different oxidizing reagent, buffer pH, grown time, grown media, etc.) have been developed to grow PDA films. In this work, protein attachment on PDA film was systematically investigated by using the real-time and label-free surface plasmon resonance (SPR) technique. The kinetics of protein-PDA interaction was explored and the influence of buffer pH and deposition media on the protein attachment was studied. Fluorescent protein microarray was further printed on PDA-coated glass slides for quantitative investigations and together with SPR data, the interesting fluorescence quenching phenomenon of PDA film was revealed. This work may deepen our understanding on the PDA-protein interaction and offer a valuable guide for efficient protein attachment on PDA film in various bio-related applications. PMID:27254254

  19. A model for multiexponential tryptophan fluorescence intensity decay in proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Bajzer, Z; Prendergast, F G

    1993-01-01

    Tryptophan fluorescence intensity decay in proteins is modeled by multiexponential functions characterized by lifetimes and preexponential factors. Commonly, multiple conformations of the protein are invoked to explain the recovery of two or more lifetimes from the experimental data. However, in many proteins the structure seems to preclude the possibility of multiple conformers sufficiently different from one another to justify such an inference. We present here another plausible multiexponential model based on the assumption that an energetically excited donor surrounded by N acceptor molecules decays by specific radiative and radiationless relaxation processes, and by transferring its energy to acceptors present in or close to the protein matrix. If interactions between the acceptors themselves and back energy transfer are neglected, we show that the intensity decay function contain 2N exponential components characterized by the unperturbed donor lifetime, by energy transfer rates and a probability of occurrence for the corresponding process. We applied this model to the fluorescence decay of holo- and apoazurin, ribonuclease T1, and the reduced single tryptophan mutant (W28F) of thioredoxin. Use of a multiexponential model for the analysis of the fluorescence intensity decay can therefore be justified, without invoking multiple protein conformations. Images FIGURE 1 PMID:8312471

  20. Natural Photoreceptors as a Source of Fluorescent Proteins, Biosensors, and Optogenetic Tools

    PubMed Central

    Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Shemetov, Anton A.; Kaberniuk, Andrii A.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2015-01-01

    Genetically encoded optical tools have revolutionized modern biology by allowing detection and control of biological processes with exceptional spatiotemporal precision and sensitivity. Natural photoreceptors provide researchers with a vast source of molecular templates for engineering of fluorescent proteins, biosensors, and optogenetic tools. Here, we give a brief overview of natural photoreceptors and their mechanisms of action. We then discuss fluorescent proteins and biosensors developed from light-oxygen-voltage-sensing (LOV) domains and phytochromes, as well as their properties and applications. These fluorescent tools possess unique characteristics not achievable with green fluorescent protein–like probes, including near-infrared fluorescence, independence of oxygen, small size, and photo-sensitizer activity. We next provide an overview of available optogenetic tools of various origins, such as LOV and BLUF (blue-light-utilizing flavin adenine dinucleotide) domains, cryptochromes, and phytochromes, enabling control of versatile cellular processes. We analyze the principles of their function and practical requirements for use. We focus mainly on optical tools with demonstrated use beyond bacteria, with a specific emphasis on their applications in mammalian cells. PMID:25706899

  1. Recombinant protein scaffolds for tissue engineering.

    PubMed

    Werkmeister, Jerome A; Ramshaw, John A M

    2012-02-01

    New biological materials for tissue engineering are now being developed using common genetic engineering capabilities to clone and express a variety of genetic elements that allow cost-effective purification and scaffold fabrication from these recombinant proteins, peptides or from chimeric combinations of these. The field is limitless as long as the gene sequences are known. The utility is dependent on the ease, product yield and adaptability of these protein products to the biomedical field. The development of recombinant proteins as scaffolds, while still an emerging technology with respect to commercial products, is scientifically superior to current use of natural materials or synthetic polymer scaffolds, in terms of designing specific structures with desired degrees of biological complexities and motifs. In the field of tissue engineering, next generation scaffolds will be the key to directing appropriate tissue regeneration. The initial period of biodegradable synthetic scaffolds that provided shape and mechanical integrity, but no biological information, is phasing out. The era of protein scaffolds offers distinct advantages, particularly with the combination of powerful tools of molecular biology. These include, for example, the production of human proteins of uniform quality that are free of infectious agents and the ability to make suitable quantities of proteins that are found in low quantity or are hard to isolate from tissue. For the particular needs of tissue engineering scaffolds, fibrous proteins like collagens, elastin, silks and combinations of these offer further advantages of natural well-defined structural scaffolds as well as endless possibilities of controlling functionality by genetic manipulation. PMID:22262725

  2. Analysis of Fluorescent Proteins with a Nanoparticle Probe

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez-Lima, Francisco A.; Eller, Michael J.; DeBord, J. Daniel; Levy, Michaella J.; Verkhoturov, Stanislav V.; Della-Negra, Serge; Schweikert, Emile A.

    2012-01-01

    This letter presents the first application of high energy, single nanoparticle probes (e.g., 520 keV Au400 2nm NP) in the characterization of surfaces containing fluorescent proteins (e.g., GFP variants) by their co-emitted photon, electron and secondary ion signals. NP induced protein luminescence increases with the NP incident energy, is originated by the NP impact and is transferred to the protein fluorophor via electronic energy transfer. Multi-electron emission is observed per single NP impacts and their distributions are specific to the target morphology and composition. Fragment ions of protein sub-units consisting of 2–7 amino acid peptides are observed under individual NP impacts that can be correlated to the random protein orientation relative to the impact site (e.g., outer layer or “skin” of the protein). PMID:22308203

  3. Thrombin detection in murine plasma using engineered fluorescence resonance energy transfer aptadimers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trapaidze, Ana; Brut, Marie; Mazères, Serge; Estève, Daniel; Gué, Anne-Marie; Bancaud, Aurélien

    2015-12-01

    Biodetection strategies, in which two sides of one target protein are targeted simultaneously, have been shown to increase specificity, selectivity, and affinity, and it has been suggested that they constitute excellent candidates for protein sensing in complex media. In this study we propose a method to engineer the sequence of a DNA construct dedicated to reversible thrombin detection. This construct, called Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) aptadimer, is assembled with two aptamers, which target different epitopes of thrombin, interconnected with a DNA linker that contains a FRET couple and a reversible double helix stem. In the absence of target, the stem is stable maintaining a FRET couple in close proximity, and fluorescence is unquenched upon thrombin addition due to the dehybridization of the stem. We define design rules for the conception of FRET aptadimers, and develop a software to optimize their functionality. One engineered FRET aptadimer sequence is subsequently characterized experimentally by temperature scanning fluorimetry, demonstrating the relevance of our technology for thrombin sensing in bulk and diluted murine plasma.

  4. Local fitness landscape of the green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Sarkisyan, Karen S; Bolotin, Dmitry A; Meer, Margarita V; Usmanova, Dinara R; Mishin, Alexander S; Sharonov, George V; Ivankov, Dmitry N; Bozhanova, Nina G; Baranov, Mikhail S; Soylemez, Onuralp; Bogatyreva, Natalya S; Vlasov, Peter K; Egorov, Evgeny S; Logacheva, Maria D; Kondrashov, Alexey S; Chudakov, Dmitry M; Putintseva, Ekaterina V; Mamedov, Ilgar Z; Tawfik, Dan S; Lukyanov, Konstantin A; Kondrashov, Fyodor A

    2016-05-19

    Fitness landscapes depict how genotypes manifest at the phenotypic level and form the basis of our understanding of many areas of biology, yet their properties remain elusive. Previous studies have analysed specific genes, often using their function as a proxy for fitness, experimentally assessing the effect on function of single mutations and their combinations in a specific sequence or in different sequences. However, systematic high-throughput studies of the local fitness landscape of an entire protein have not yet been reported. Here we visualize an extensive region of the local fitness landscape of the green fluorescent protein from Aequorea victoria (avGFP) by measuring the native function (fluorescence) of tens of thousands of derivative genotypes of avGFP. We show that the fitness landscape of avGFP is narrow, with 3/4 of the derivatives with a single mutation showing reduced fluorescence and half of the derivatives with four mutations being completely non-fluorescent. The narrowness is enhanced by epistasis, which was detected in up to 30% of genotypes with multiple mutations and mostly occurred through the cumulative effect of slightly deleterious mutations causing a threshold-like decrease in protein stability and a concomitant loss of fluorescence. A model of orthologous sequence divergence spanning hundreds of millions of years predicted the extent of epistasis in our data, indicating congruence between the fitness landscape properties at the local and global scales. The characterization of the local fitness landscape of avGFP has important implications for several fields including molecular evolution, population genetics and protein design. PMID:27193686

  5. Fluorescently labeled collagen binding proteins allow specific visualization of collagen in tissues and live cell culture.

    PubMed

    Krahn, Katy Nash; Bouten, Carlijn V C; van Tuijl, Sjoerd; van Zandvoort, Marc A M J; Merkx, Maarten

    2006-03-15

    Visualization of the formation and orientation of collagen fibers in tissue engineering experiments is crucial for understanding the factors that determine the mechanical properties of tissues. In this study, collagen-specific fluorescent probes were developed using a new approach that takes advantage of the inherent specificity of collagen binding protein domains present in bacterial adhesion proteins (CNA35) and integrins (GST-alpha1I). Both collagen binding domains were obtained as fusion proteins from an Escherichia coli expression system and fluorescently labeled using either amine-reactive succinimide (CNA35) or cysteine-reactive maleimide (GST-alpha1I) dyes. Solid-phase binding assays showed that both protein-based probes are much more specific than dichlorotriazinyl aminofluorescein (DTAF), a fluorescent dye that is currently used to track collagen formation in tissue engineering experiments. The CNA35 probe showed a higher affinity for human collagen type I than did the GST-alpha1I probe (apparent K(d) values of 0.5 and 50 microM, respectively) and showed very little cross-reactivity with noncollagenous extracellular matrix proteins. The CNA35 probe was also superior to both GST-alpha1I and DTAF in visualizing the formation of collagen fibers around live human venous saphena cells. Immunohistological experiments on rat tissue showed colocalization of the CNA35 probe with collagen type I and type III antibodies. The fluorescent probes described here have important advantages over existing methods for visualization of collagen, in particular for monitoring the formation of collagen in live tissue cultures over prolonged time periods. PMID:16476406

  6. Single molecule spectroscopic characterization of a far-red fluorescent protein (HcRed) from the Anthozoa coral Heteractis crispa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cotlet, Mircea; Habuchi, Satoshi; Whitier, Jennifer E.; Werner, James H.; De Schryver, Frans C.; Hofkens, Johan; Goodwin, Peter M.

    2006-02-01

    We report on the photophysical properties of a far-red intrinsic fluorescent protein by means of single molecule and ensemble spectroscopic methods. The green fluorescent protein (GFP) from Aequorea victoria is a popular fluorescent marker with genetically encoded fluorescence and which can be fused to any biological structure without affecting its function. GFP and its variants provide emission colors from blue to yellowish green. Red intrinsic fluorescent proteins from Anthozoa species represent a recent addition to the emission color palette provided by GFPs. Red intrinsic fluorescent markers are on high demand in protein-protein interaction studies based on fluorescence-resonance energy transfer or in multicolor tracking studies or in cellular investigations where autofluorescence possesses a problem. Here we address the photophysical properties of a far-red fluorescent protein (HcRed), a mutant engineered from a chromoprotein cloned from the sea anemone Heteractis crispa, by using a combination of ensemble and single molecule spectroscopic methods. We show evidence for the presence of HcRed protein as an oligomer and for incomplete maturation of its chromophore. Incomplete maturation results in the presence of an immature (yellow) species absorbing/fluorescing at 490/530-nm. This yellow chromophore is involved in a fast resonance-energy transfer with the mature (purple) chromophore. The mature chromophore of HcRed is found to adopt two conformations, a Transoriented form absorbing and 565-nm and non-fluorescent in solution and a Cis-oriented form absorbing at 590-nm and emitting at 645-nm. These two forms co-exist in solution in thermal equilibrium. Excitation-power dependence fluorescence correlation spectroscopy of HcRed shows evidence for singlet-triplet transitions in the microseconds time scale and for cis-trans isomerization occurring in a time scale of tens of microseconds. Single molecule fluorescence data recorded from immobilized HcRed proteins, all

  7. Multi-color imaging of the bacterial nucleoid and division proteins with blue, orange, and near-infrared fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Fabai; Van Rijn, Erwin; Van Schie, Bas G. C.; Dekker, Cees

    2015-01-01

    Studies of the spatiotemporal protein dynamics within live bacterial cells impose a strong demand for multi-color imaging. Despite the increasingly large collection of fluorescent protein (FP) variants engineered to date, only a few of these were successfully applied in bacteria. Here, we explore the performance of recently engineered variants with the blue (TagBFP), orange (TagRFP-T, mKO2), and far-red (mKate2) spectral colors by tagging HU, LacI, MinD, and FtsZ for visualizing the nucleoid and the cell division process. We find that, these FPs outperformed previous versions in terms of brightness and photostability at their respective spectral range, both when expressed as cytosolic label and when fused to native proteins. As this indicates that their folding is sufficiently fast, these proteins thus successfully expand the applicable spectra for multi-color imaging in bacteria. A near-infrared protein (eqFP670) is found to be the most red-shifted protein applicable to bacteria so far, with brightness and photostability that are advantageous for cell-body imaging, such as in microfluidic devices. Despite the multiple advantages, we also report the alarming observation that TagBFP directly interacts with TagRFP-T, causing interference of localization patterns between their fusion proteins. Our application of diverse FPs for endogenous tagging provides guidelines for future engineering of fluorescent fusions in bacteria, specifically: (1) The performance of newly developed FPs should be quantified in vivo for their introduction into bacteria; (2) spectral crosstalk and inter-variant interactions between FPs should be carefully examined for multi-color imaging; and (3) successful genomic fusion to the 5′-end of a gene strongly depends on the translational read-through of the inserted coding sequence. PMID:26136737

  8. Ultrafast fluorescence upconversion technique and its applications to proteins.

    PubMed

    Chosrowjan, Haik; Taniguchi, Seiji; Tanaka, Fumio

    2015-08-01

    The basic principles and main characteristics of the ultrafast time-resolved fluorescence upconversion technique (conventional and space-resolved), including requirements for nonlinear crystals, mixing spectral bandwidth, acceptance angle, etc., are presented. Applications to flavoproteins [wild-type (WT) FMN-binding protein and its W32Y, W32A, E13R, E13K, E13Q and E13T mutants] and photoresponsive proteins [WT photoactive yellow protein and its R52Q mutant in solution and as single crystals] are demonstrated. For flavoproteins, investigations elucidating the effects of ionic charges on ultrafast electron transfer (ET) dynamics are summarized. It is shown that replacement of the ionic amino acid Glu13 and the resulting modification of the electrostatic charge distribution in the protein chromphore-binding pocket substantially alters the ultrafast fluorescence quenching dynamics and ET rate in FMN-binding protein. It is concluded that, together with donor-acceptor distances, electrostatic interactions between ionic photoproducts and other ionic groups in the proteins are important factors influencing the ET rates. In WT photoactive yellow protein and the R52Q mutant, ultrafast photoisomerization dynamics of the chromophore (deprotonated trans-p-coumaric acid) in liquid and crystal phases are investigated. It is shown that the primary dynamics in solution and single-crystal phases are quite similar; hence, the photocycle dynamics and structural differences observed at longer time scales arise mostly from the structural restraints imposed by the crystal lattice rigidity versus the flexibility in solution. PMID:25532707

  9. Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Highly Charged Green Fluorescent Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Lau, E Y; Phillips, J L; Colvin, M E

    2009-03-26

    A recent experimental study showed that green fluorescent protein (GFP) that has been mutated to have ultra-high positive or negative net charges, retain their native structure and fluorescent properties while gaining resistance to aggregation under denaturing conditions. These proteins also provide an ideal test case for studying the effects of surface charge on protein structure and dynamics. They have performed classical molecular dynamics (MD) simulations on the near-neutral wildtype GFP and mutants with net charges of -29 and +35. They analyzed the resulting trajectories to quantify differences in structure and dynamics between the three GFPs. This analyses shows that all three proteins are stable over the MD trajectory, with the near-neutral wild type GFP exhibiting somewhat more flexibility than the positive or negative GFP mutants, as measured by the order parameter and changes in phi-psi angles. There are more dramatic differences in the properties of the water and counter ions surrounding the proteins. The water diffusion constant near the protein surface is closer to the value for bulk water in the positively charged GFP than in the other two proteins. Additionally, the positively charged GFP shows a much greater clustering of the counter ions (CL-) near its surface than corresponding counter ions (Na+) near the negatively charged mutant.

  10. Watching Single Proteins Using Engineered Nanopores

    PubMed Central

    Movileanu, Liviu

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies in the area of single-molecule detection of proteins with nanopores show a great promise in fundamental science, bionanotechnology and proteomics. In this mini-review, I discuss a comprehensive array of examinations of protein detection and characterization using protein and solid-state nanopores. These investigations demonstrate the power of the single-molecule nanopore measurements to reveal a broad range of functional, structural, biochemical and biophysical features of proteins, such as their backbone flexibility, enzymatic activity, binding affinity as well as their concentration, size and folding state. Engineered nanopores in organic materials and in inorganic membranes coupled with surface modification and protein engineering might provide a new generation of sensing devices for molecular biomedical diagnosis. PMID:24370252

  11. Photoswitchable red fluorescent protein with a large Stokes shift

    PubMed Central

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; English, Brian P.; Malashkevich, Vladimir N.; Xiao, Hui; Almo, Steven C.; Singer, Robert H.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Subclass of fluorescent proteins, large Stokes shift fluorescent proteins, is characterized by their increased spread between the excitation and emission maxima. Here we report a photoswitchable variant of a red fluorescent protein with a large Stokes shift, PSLSSmKate, which initially exhibits excitation/emission at 445/622 nm, but irradiation with violet light photoswitches PSLSSmKate into a common red form with excitation/emission at 573/621 nm. We characterize spectral, photophysical and biochemical properties of PSLSSmKate in vitro and in mammalian cells, and determine its crystal structure in the large Stokes shift form. Mass-spectrometry, mutagenesis and spectroscopic analysis of PSLSSmKate allow us to propose molecular mechanisms for the large Stokes shift, pH dependence and light-induced chromophore transformation. We demonstrate applicability of PSLSSmKate to superresolution PALM microscopy and protein dynamics in live cells. Given its promising properties, we expect that PSLSSmKate-like phenotype will be further used for photoactivatable imaging and tracking multiple populations of intracellular objects. PMID:25242289

  12. Using Fluorescent Protein Fusions to Study Protein Subcellular Localization and Dynamics in Plant Cells.

    PubMed

    Cui, Yong; Gao, Caiji; Zhao, Qiong; Jiang, Liwen

    2016-01-01

    Studies of protein subcellular localization and dynamics are helpful in understanding the cellular functions of proteins in an organism. In the past decade, the use of green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a fusion tag has dramatically extended our knowledge in this field. Transient expression and stable transformation of GFP-tagged proteins have been wildly used to study protein localization in vivo in different systems. Although GFP-based tags provide a fast and convenient way to characterize protein properties in living cells, several reports have demonstrated that GFP fusions might not accurately reflect the localization of the native protein as GFP tags may alter the protein properties. To facilitate proper usage of GFP tags in plant cell biology study, we describe detailed protocols to identify possible inhibitory effects of fluorescent tags on protein subcellular localization and to determine if a fluorescently tagged protein is localized to the correct subcellular compartment. Using Arabidopsis Endomembrane protein 12 (EMP12) as an example, we first show the possible inhibitory effect of GFP tags on proper protein localization and then describe the immunofluorescence labeling method to verify the correct localization of GFP fusion proteins. Next, a method is presented using the ImageJ program with the Pearson-Spearman correlation (PSC) colocalization plug-in for statistical quantification of colocalization ratios of two fluorophores. Finally we provide a detailed method for protein dynamics studies using spinning disk confocal microscopy in Arabidopsis cells. PMID:27515077

  13. Directed evolution of a monomeric, bright and photostable version of Clavularia cyan fluorescent protein: structural characterization and applications in fluorescence imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Al, Hui-wang; Henderson, J. Nathan; Remington, S. James; Campbell, Robert E.

    2008-05-07

    The arsenal of engineered variants of the GFP [green FP (fluorescent protein)] from Aequorea jellyfish provides researchers with a powerful set of tools for use in biochemical and cell biology research. The recent discovery of diverse FPs in Anthozoa coral species has provided protein engineers with an abundance of alternative progenitor FPs from which improved variants that complement or supersede existing Aequorea GFP variants could be derived. Here, we report the engineering of the first monomeric version of the tetrameric CFP (cyan FP) cFP484 from Clavularia coral. Starting from a designed synthetic gene library with mammalian codon preferences, we identified dimeric cFP484 variants with fluorescent brightness significantly greater than the wild-type protein. Following incorporation of dimer-breaking mutations and extensive directed evolution with selection for blue-shifted emission, high fluorescent brightness and photostability, we arrived at an optimized variant that we have named mTFP1 [monomeric TFP1 (teal FP 1)]. The new mTFP1 is one of the brightest and most photostable FPs reported to date. In addition, the fluorescence is insensitive to physiologically relevant pH changes and the fluorescence lifetime decay is best fitted as a single exponential. The 1.19 {angstrom} crystal structure (1 {angstrom}=0.1 nm) of mTFP1 confirms the monomeric structure and reveals an unusually distorted chromophore conformation. As we experimentally demonstrate, the high quantum yield of mTFP1 (0.85) makes it particularly suitable as a replacement for ECFP (enhanced CFP) or Cerulean as a FRET (fluorescence resonance energy transfer) donor to either a yellow or orange FP acceptor.

  14. Bright monomeric near-infrared fluorescent proteins as tags and biosensors for multiscale imaging.

    PubMed

    Shcherbakova, Daria M; Baloban, Mikhail; Emelyanov, Alexander V; Brenowitz, Michael; Guo, Peng; Verkhusha, Vladislav V

    2016-01-01

    Monomeric near-infrared (NIR) fluorescent proteins (FPs) are in high demand as protein tags and components of biosensors for deep-tissue imaging and multicolour microscopy. We report three bright and spectrally distinct monomeric NIR FPs, termed miRFPs, engineered from bacterial phytochrome, which can be used as easily as GFP-like FPs. miRFPs are 2-5-fold brighter in mammalian cells than other monomeric NIR FPs and perform well in protein fusions, allowing multicolour structured illumination microscopy. miRFPs enable development of several types of NIR biosensors, such as for protein-protein interactions, RNA detection, signalling cascades and cell fate. We demonstrate this by engineering the monomeric fluorescence complementation reporters, the IκBα reporter for NF-κB pathway and the cell cycle biosensor for detection of proliferation status of cells in culture and in animals. miRFPs allow non-invasive visualization and detection of biological processes at different scales, from super-resolution microscopy to in vivo imaging, using the same probes. PMID:27539380

  15. Computational Design of the β-Sheet Surface of a Red Fluorescent Protein Allows Control of Protein Oligomerization

    PubMed Central

    Wannier, Timothy M.; Moore, Matthew M.; Mou, Yun; Mayo, Stephen L.

    2015-01-01

    Computational design has been used with mixed success for the design of protein surfaces, with directed evolution heretofore providing better practical solutions than explicit design. Directed evolution, however, requires a tractable high-throughput screen because the random nature of mutation does not enrich for desired traits. Here we demonstrate the successful design of the β-sheet surface of a red fluorescent protein (RFP), enabling control over its oligomerization. To isolate the problem of surface design, we created a hybrid RFP from DsRed and mCherry with a stabilized protein core that allows for monomerization without loss of fluorescence. We designed an explicit library for which 93 of 96 (97%) of the protein variants are soluble, stably fluorescent, and monomeric. RFPs are heavily used in biology, but are natively tetrameric, and creating RFP monomers has proven extremely difficult. We show that surface design and core engineering are separate problems in RFP development and that the next generation of RFP markers will depend on improved methods for core design. PMID:26075618

  16. Portraying G Protein-Coupled Receptors with Fluorescent Ligands

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The thermodynamics of ligand–receptor interactions at the surface of living cells represents a fundamental aspect of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) biology; thus, its detailed elucidation constitutes a challenge for modern pharmacology. Interestingly, fluorescent ligands have been developed for a variety of GPCRs in order to monitor ligand–receptor binding in living cells. Accordingly, new methodological strategies derived from noninvasive fluorescence-based approaches, especially fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET), have been successfully developed to characterize ligand–receptor interactions. Importantly, these technologies are supplanting more hazardous and expensive radioactive binding assays. In addition, FRET-based tools have also become extremely powerful approaches for visualizing receptor–receptor interactions (i.e., GPCR oligomerization) in living cells. Thus, by means of the synthesis of compatible fluorescent ligands these novel techniques can be implemented to demonstrate the existence of GPCR oligomerization not only in heterologous systems but also in native tissues. Finally, there is no doubt that these methodologies would also be relevant in drug discovery in order to develop new high-throughput screening approaches or to identify new therapeutic targets. Overall, herein, we provide a thorough assessment of all technical and biological aspects, including strengths and weaknesses, of these fluorescence-based methodologies when applied to the study of GPCR biology at the plasma membrane of living cells. PMID:25010291

  17. The fluorescent protein palette: tools for cellular imaging†

    PubMed Central

    Davidson, Michael W.

    2010-01-01

    This critical review provides an overview of the continually expanding family of fluorescent proteins (FPs) that have become essential tools for studies of cell biology and physiology. Here, we describe the characteristics of the genetically encoded fluorescent markers that now span the visible spectrum from deep blue to deep red. We identify some of the novel FPs that have unusual characteristics that make them useful reporters of the dynamic behaviors of proteins inside cells, and describe how many different optical methods can be combined with the FPs to provide quantitative measurements in living systems. “If wood is rubbed with the Pulmo marinus, it will have all the appearance of being on fire; so much so, indeed, that a walking-stick, thus treated, will light the way like a torch” (translation of Pliny the Elder from John Bostock, 1855). PMID:19771335

  18. Rotational order–disorder structure of fluorescent protein FP480

    SciTech Connect

    Pletnev, Sergei; Morozova, Kateryna S.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Dauter, Zbigniew

    2009-09-01

    An analysis of the rotational order–disorder structure of fluorescent protein FP480 is presented. In the last decade, advances in instrumentation and software development have made crystallography a powerful tool in structural biology. Using this method, structural information can now be acquired from pathological crystals that would have been abandoned in earlier times. In this paper, the order–disorder (OD) structure of fluorescent protein FP480 is discussed. The structure is composed of tetramers with 222 symmetry incorporated into the lattice in two different ways, namely rotated 90° with respect to each other around the crystal c axis, with tetramer axes coincident with crystallographic twofold axes. The random distribution of alternatively oriented tetramers in the crystal creates a rotational OD structure with statistically averaged I422 symmetry, although the presence of very weak and diffuse additional reflections suggests that the randomness is only approximate.

  19. The Cyan Fluorescent Protein (CFP) Transgenic Mouse as a Model for Imaging Pancreatic Exocrine Cells

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Hop S Tran; Kimura, Hiroaki; Kaushal, Sharmeela; Snyder, Cynthia S; Reynoso, Jose; Hoffman, Robert M; Bouvet, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Context The use of fluorescent proteins for in vivo imaging has opened many new areas of research. Among the important advances in the field have been the development of transgenic mice expressing various fluorescent proteins. Objective To report whole-body and organ-specific fluorescence imaging to characterize the transgenic cyan fluorescent protein mouse. Design Mice were imaged using two devices. Brightfield images were obtained with the OV100 Small Animal Imaging System (Olympus Corp., Tokyo, Japan). Fluorescence imaging was performed under the cyan fluorescent protein filter using the iBox Small Animal Imaging System (UVP, Upland, CA, USA). Intervention All animals were sacrificed immediately before imaging. They were imaged before and throughout multiple steps of a complete necropsy. Harvested organs were also imaged with both devices. Selected organs were then frozen and processed for histology, fluorescence microscopy, and H&E staining. Fluorescence microscopy was performed with an Olympus IMT-2 inverted fluorescence microscope. Main outcome measure Determination of fluorescence intensity of different organs. Results Surprisingly, we found that there is differential enhancement of fluorescence among organs; most notably, the pancreas stands out from the rest of the gastrointestinal tract, displaying the strongest fluorescence of all organs in the mouse. Fluorescence microscopy demonstrated that the cyan fluorescent protein fluorescence resided in the acinar cells of the pancreas and not the islet cells. Conclusions The cyan fluorescent protein mouse should lead to a deeper understanding of pancreatic function and pathology, including cancer. PMID:19287108

  20. Aptamer carbon nanodot sandwich used for fluorescent detection of protein.

    PubMed

    Xu, Bailu; Zhao, Chuanqi; Wei, Weili; Ren, Jinsong; Miyoshi, Daisuke; Sugimoto, Naoki; Qu, Xiaogang

    2012-12-01

    Carbon nanodots (C-Dots) have attracted growing interest in recent years due to their low cost, ready scalability, excellent chemical stability, biocompatibility, colloidal stability, and resilience of photoluminescence. They have been employed as novel, ideal fluorescent probes for bio-imaging and smart sensing. In addition, taking advantage of their low-cytotoxicity, C-Dots have potential applications in biochemical and cell biological fields. Herein, we present the first assay with aptamer-functionalized C-Dots as a sensory platform for protein detection. The presence of thrombin can induce the aptamer-modified fluorescent C-Dots to form a sandwich structure with aptamer-functionalized silica nanoparticles through specific protein/aptamer interaction. The assay shows high specificity toward thrombin. A detection limit of 1 nM is obtained, which is significantly improved as compared to that of many previously reported fluorescence-based thrombin detection assays. Using other modified aptamers and antibodies instead of thrombin binding aptamers, this strategy may offer a suitable approach for detection of other proteins in biological, pharmaceutical and nano-mechanical applications. PMID:23050264

  1. Multi-color femtosecond source for simultaneous excitation of multiple fluorescent proteins in two-photon fluorescence microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ke; Liu, Tzu-Ming; Wu, Juwell; Horton, Nicholas G.; Lin, Charles P.; Xu, Chris

    2013-02-01

    Simultaneous imaging of cells expressing multiple fluorescent proteins (FPs) is of particular interest in applications such as mapping neural circuits, tracking multiple immune cell populations, etc. To visualize both in vivo and ex vivo tissue morphology and physiology at a cellular level deep within scattering tissues, two-photon fluorescence microscopy (2PM) is a powerful tool that has found wide applications. However, simultaneous imaging of multiple FPs with 2PM is greatly hampered by the lack of proper ultrafast lasers offering multi-color femtosecond pulses, each targeting the two-photon absorption peak of a different FP. Here we demonstrate simultaneous two-photon fluorescence excitation of RFP, YFP, and CFP in human melanoma cells engineered to express a "rainbow" pallet of colors, using a novel fiber-based source with energetic, three-color femtosecond pulses. The three-color pulses, centered at 775 nm, 864 nm and 950 nm, are obtained through second harmonic generation of the 1550 nm pump laser and SHG of the solitons at 1728 nm and 1900 nm generated through soliton self-frequency shift (SSFS) of the pump laser in a large-mode-area (LMA) fiber. The resulting wavelengths are well matched to the two-photon absorption peaks of the three FPs for efficient excitation. Our results demonstrate that multi-color femtosecond pulse generation using SSFS and a turn-key, fiber-based femtosecond laser can fulfill the requirements for simultaneous imaging of multiple FPs in 2PM, opening new opportunities for a wide range of biological applications where non-invasive, high-resolution imaging of multiple fluorescent indicators is required.

  2. The 1.6 Å resolution structure of a FRET-optimized Cerulean fluorescent protein

    SciTech Connect

    Watkins, Jennifer L.; Kim, Hanseong; Markwardt, Michele L.; Chen, Liqing; Fromme, Raimund; Rizzo, Mark A.; Wachter, Rebekka M.

    2013-05-01

    The high resolution X-ray structure of the cyan fluorescent protein mCerulean3 demonstrates that different combinations of correlated residue substitutions can provide near optimum quantum yield values for fluorescence. Genetically encoded cyan fluorescent proteins (CFPs) bearing a tryptophan-derived chromophore are commonly used as energy-donor probes in Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) experiments useful in live cell-imaging applications. In recent years, significant effort has been expended on eliminating the structural and excited-state heterogeneity of these proteins, which has been linked to undesirable photophysical properties. Recently, mCerulean3, a descendant of enhanced CFP, was introduced as an optimized FRET donor protein with a superior quantum yield of 0.87. Here, the 1.6 Å resolution X-ray structure of mCerulean3 is reported. The chromophore is shown to adopt a planar trans configuration at low pH values, indicating that the acid-induced isomerization of Cerulean has been eliminated. β-Strand 7 appears to be well ordered in a single conformation, indicating a loss of conformational heterogeneity in the vicinity of the chromophore. Although the side chains of Ile146 and Leu167 appear to exist in two rotamer states, they are found to be well packed against the indole group of the chromophore. The Ser65 reversion mutation allows improved side-chain packing of Leu220. A structural comparison with mTurquoise2 is presented and additional engineering strategies are discussed.

  3. Synthesis of highly fluorescent gold nanoclusters using egg white proteins.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Dickson; Geckeler, Kurt E

    2014-03-01

    Gold nanoclusters (AuNCs) have gained interest during the recent years because of their low toxicity and finer size for the bioimaging and biolabeling applications in comparison to the semiconductor quantum dot analogues. Diverse materials such as sulfur compounds, peptides, dendrimers, proteins, etc., are exploited for the preparation of AuNCs. Henceforth, highly fluorescent, water-soluble, and few atom-containing gold nanoclusters are created using a rapid, straightforward, and green method. In this regard for the first time chicken egg white (CEW), one of the most unique materials, is utilized in an aqueous solution under basic conditions at physiological temperature for the preparation of AuNCs. Tyrosine and tryptophan amino acid residues are responsible for the conversion of Au ions to Au(0) under alkaline condtions. CEW contains four major proteins of which the main constituent protein, ovalbumin also leads to the formation of the AuNCs with a higher fluorescence emission compared to the CEW. The ratios between the different reaction partners are very crucial, along with temperature and time for the preparation of AuNCs with high photoluminescence emission. The limited vibrational motion of the proteins under alkaline condition and the bulkiness of the proteins help in the formation of AuNCs. PMID:24321847

  4. Bright monomeric near-infrared fluorescent proteins as tags and biosensors for multiscale imaging

    PubMed Central

    Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Baloban, Mikhail; Emelyanov, Alexander V.; Brenowitz, Michael; Guo, Peng; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2016-01-01

    Monomeric near-infrared (NIR) fluorescent proteins (FPs) are in high demand as protein tags and components of biosensors for deep-tissue imaging and multicolour microscopy. We report three bright and spectrally distinct monomeric NIR FPs, termed miRFPs, engineered from bacterial phytochrome, which can be used as easily as GFP-like FPs. miRFPs are 2–5-fold brighter in mammalian cells than other monomeric NIR FPs and perform well in protein fusions, allowing multicolour structured illumination microscopy. miRFPs enable development of several types of NIR biosensors, such as for protein–protein interactions, RNA detection, signalling cascades and cell fate. We demonstrate this by engineering the monomeric fluorescence complementation reporters, the IκBα reporter for NF-κB pathway and the cell cycle biosensor for detection of proliferation status of cells in culture and in animals. miRFPs allow non-invasive visualization and detection of biological processes at different scales, from super-resolution microscopy to in vivo imaging, using the same probes. PMID:27539380

  5. Prolonged irradiation of enhanced cyan fluorescent protein or Cerulean can invalidate Forster resonance energy transfer measurements.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Birgit; Zimmer, Thomas; Klöcker, Nikolaj; Kelbauskas, Laimonas; König, Karsten; Benndorf, Klaus; Biskup, Christoph

    2008-01-01

    Since its discovery, green fluorescent protein (GFP) and its variants have proven to be a good and convenient fluorescent label for proteins: GFP and other visible fluorescent proteins (VFPs) can be fused selectively to the protein of interest by simple cloning techniques and develop fluorescence without additional cofactors. Among the steadily growing collection of VFPs, several pairs can be chosen that can serve as donor and acceptor fluorophores in Forster resonance energy transfer (FRET) experiments. Among them, the cyan fluorescent proteins (ECFP/Cerulean) and the enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (EYFP) are most commonly used. We show that ECFP and Cerulean have some disadvantages despite their common use: Upon irradiation with light intensities that are commonly used for intensity- and lifetime-based FRET measurements, both the fluorescence intensity and the fluorescence lifetime of ECFP and Cerulean decrease. This can hamper both intensity- and lifetime-based FRET measurements and emphasizes the need for control measurements to exclude these artifacts. PMID:18601529

  6. Recombination-stable multimeric green fluorescent protein for characterization of weak promoter outputs in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Rugbjerg, Peter; Knuf, Christoph; Förster, Jochen; Sommer, Morten O A

    2015-12-01

    Green fluorescent proteins (GFPs) are widely used for visualization of proteins to track localization and expression dynamics. However, phenotypically important processes can operate at too low expression levels for routine detection, i.e. be overshadowed by autofluorescence noise. While GFP functions well in translational fusions, the use of tandem GFPs to amplify fluorescence signals is currently avoided in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and many other microorganisms due to the risk of loop-out by direct-repeat recombination. We increased GFP fluorescence by translationally fusing three different GFP variants, yeast-enhanced GFP, GFP+ and superfolder GFP to yield a sequence-diverged triple GFP molecule 3vGFP with 74-84% internal repeat identity. Unlike a single GFP, the brightness of 3vGFP allowed characterization of a weak promoter in S. cerevisiae. Utilizing 3vGFP, we further engineered a less leaky Cu(2+)-inducible promoter based on CUP1. The basal expression level of the new promoter was approximately 61% below the wild-type CUP1 promoter, thus expanding the absolute range of Cu(2+)-based gene control. The stability of 3vGFP towards direct-repeat recombination was assayed in S. cerevisiae cultured for 25 generations under strong and slightly toxic expression after which only limited reduction in fluorescence was detectable. Such non-recombinogenic GFPs can help quantify intracellular responses operating a low copy number in recombination-prone organisms. PMID:26392044

  7. Using Green and Red Fluorescent Proteins to Teach Protein Expression, Purification, and Crystallization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wu, Yifeng; Zhou, Yangbin; Song, Jiaping; Hu, Xiaojian; Ding, Yu; Zhang, Zhihong

    2008-01-01

    We have designed a laboratory curriculum using the green and red fluorescent proteins (GFP and RFP) to visualize the cloning, expression, chromatography purification, crystallization, and protease-cleavage experiments of protein science. The EGFP and DsRed monomer (mDsRed)-coding sequences were amplified by PCR and cloned into pMAL (MBP-EGFP) or…

  8. Molecular Engineering of Acoustic Protein Nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Lakshmanan, Anupama; Farhadi, Arash; Nety, Suchita P; Lee-Gosselin, Audrey; Bourdeau, Raymond W; Maresca, David; Shapiro, Mikhail G

    2016-08-23

    Ultrasound is among the most widely used biomedical imaging modalities, but has limited ability to image specific molecular targets due to the lack of suitable nanoscale contrast agents. Gas vesicles-genetically encoded protein nanostructures isolated from buoyant photosynthetic microbes-have recently been identified as nanoscale reporters for ultrasound. Their unique physical properties give gas vesicles significant advantages over conventional microbubble contrast agents, including nanoscale dimensions and inherent physical stability. Furthermore, as a genetically encoded material, gas vesicles present the possibility that the nanoscale mechanical, acoustic, and targeting properties of an imaging agent can be engineered at the level of its constituent proteins. Here, we demonstrate that genetic engineering of gas vesicles results in nanostructures with new mechanical, acoustic, surface, and functional properties to enable harmonic, multiplexed, and multimodal ultrasound imaging as well as cell-specific molecular targeting. These results establish a biomolecular platform for the engineering of acoustic nanomaterials. PMID:27351374

  9. Structural Tuning of the Fluorescent Protein iLOV for Improved Photostability*

    PubMed Central

    Christie, John M.; Hitomi, Kenichi; Arvai, Andrew S.; Hartfield, Kimberly A.; Mettlen, Marcel; Pratt, Ashley J.; Tainer, John A.; Getzoff, Elizabeth D.

    2012-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins derived from light, oxygen, or voltage (LOV) domains offer advantages over green fluorescent protein (GFP) from their small size and efficacy under anaerobic conditions. The flavoprotein improved LOV (iLOV) was engineered from the blue light receptor phototropin as a reporter of viral infection. To inform the molecular basis for the improved, photoreversible, fluorescent properties of iLOV, we employed directed evolution and determined five LOV crystallographic structures. Comparative structural analyses between iLOV and its progenitors reveal mutation-induced constraints in the environment of the flavin mononucleotide (FMN) chromophore; in iLOV, the methyl group of Thr-394 “crowds” the FMN isoalloxazine ring, Leu-470 triggers side chain “flipping” of Leu-472, and the terminal FMN phosphate shows increased anchoring. We further engineered iLOV variants that are readily detectable in bacterial and mammalian cells due to order-of-magnitude photostability increases. Structure determination of a resulting representative photostable iLOV (phiLOV) variant reveals additional constraints on the chromophore. Aromatic residues Tyr-401 and Phe-485 in phiLOV sandwich the FMN isoalloxazine ring from both sides, whereas Ser-390 anchors the side chain of FMN-interacting Gln-489 Our combined structural and mutational results reveal that constraining the FMN fluorophore yields improved photochemical properties for iLOV and its new photostable derivative. These findings provide a framework for structural fine-tuning of LOV scaffold proteins to maximize their potential as oxygen-independent fluorescent reporters. PMID:22573334

  10. Interferences of Silica Nanoparticles in Green Fluorescent Protein Folding Processes.

    PubMed

    Klein, Géraldine; Devineau, Stéphanie; Aude, Jean Christophe; Boulard, Yves; Pasquier, Hélène; Labarre, Jean; Pin, Serge; Renault, Jean Philippe

    2016-01-12

    We investigated the relationship between unfolded proteins, silica nanoparticles and chaperonin to determine whether unfolded proteins could stick to silica surfaces and how this process could impair heat shock protein activity. The HSP60 catalyzed green fluorescent protein (GFP) folding was used as a model system. The adsorption isotherms and adsorption kinetics of denatured GFP were measured, showing that denaturation increases GFP affinity for silica surfaces. This affinity is maintained even if the surfaces are covered by a protein corona and allows silica NPs to interfere directly with GFP folding by trapping it in its unstructured state. We determined also the adsorption isotherms of HSP60 and its chaperonin activity once adsorbed, showing that SiO2 NP can interfere also indirectly with protein folding through chaperonin trapping and inhibition. This inhibition is specifically efficient when NPs are covered first with a layer of unfolded proteins. These results highlight for the first time the antichaperonin activity of silica NPs and ask new questions about the toxicity of such misfolded proteins/nanoparticles assembly toward cells. PMID:26649773

  11. Fluorescent labeling of tetracysteine-tagged proteins in intact cells

    PubMed Central

    Hoffmann, Carsten; Gaietta, Guido; Zürn, Alexander; Adams, Stephen R; Terrillon, Sonia; Ellisman, Mark H; Tsien, Roger Y; Lohse, Martin J

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we provide a general protocol for labeling proteins with the membrane-permeant fluorogenic biarsenical dye fluorescein arsenical hairpin binder–ethanedithiol (FlAsH-EDT2). Generation of the tetracysteine-tagged protein construct by itself is not described, as this is a protein-specific process. This method allows site-selective labeling of proteins in living cells and has been applied to a wide variety of proteins and biological problems. We provide here a generally applicable labeling procedure and discuss the problems that can occur as well as general considerations that must be taken into account when designing and implementing the procedure. The method can even be applied to proteins with expression below 1 pmol mg−1 of protein, such as G protein–coupled receptors, and it can be used to study the intracellular localization of proteins as well as functional interactions in fluorescence resonance energy transfer experiments. The labeling procedure using FlAsH-EDT2 as described takes 2–3 h, depending on the number of samples to be processed. PMID:20885379

  12. Dynamic regulation of fluorescent proteins from a single species of coral.

    PubMed

    Kao, Hung-Teh; Sturgis, Shelby; DeSalle, Rob; Tsai, Julia; Davis, Douglas; Gruber, David F; Pieribone, Vincent A

    2007-01-01

    To gain a better understanding of the natural function of fluorescent proteins, we have undertaken quantitative analyses of these proteins in a single species of coral, Montastraea cavernosa, residing around Turneffe atoll, on the Belizean Barrier Reef. We identified at least 10 members of a fluorescent protein family in this species, which consist of 4 distinct spectral classes. As much as a 10-fold change in the overall expression of fluorescent proteins was observed from specimen to specimen, suggesting that fluorescent proteins are dynamically regulated in response to environmental or physiological conditions. We found that the expression of some proteins was inversely correlated with depth, and that groups of proteins were coordinately expressed. There was no relationship between the expression of fluorescent proteins and the natural coloration of the Montastraea cavernosa specimens in this study. These findings have implications for current hypotheses regarding the properties and natural function of fluorescent proteins. PMID:17955294

  13. Dentin Matrix Proteins in Bone Tissue Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Ravindran, Sriram

    2016-01-01

    Dentin and bone are mineralized tissue matrices comprised of collagen fibrils and reinforced with oriented crystalline hydroxyapatite. Although both tissues perform different functionalities, they are assembled and orchestrated by mesenchymal cells that synthesize both collagenous and noncollagenous proteins albeit in different proportions. The dentin matrix proteins (DMPs) have been studied in great detail in recent years due to its inherent calcium binding properties in the extracellular matrix resulting in tissue calcification. Recent studies have shown that these proteins can serve both as intracellular signaling proteins leading to induction of stem cell differentiation and also function as nucleating proteins in the extracellular matrix. These properties make the DMPs attractive candidates for bone and dentin tissue regeneration. This chapter will provide an overview of the DMPs, their functionality and their proven and possible applications with respect to bone tissue engineering. PMID:26545748

  14. Fluorescence imaging of angiogenesis in green fluorescent protein-expressing tumors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Meng; Baranov, Eugene; Jiang, Ping; Li, Xiao-Ming; Wang, Jin W.; Li, Lingna; Yagi, Shigeo; Moossa, A. R.; Hoffman, Robert M.

    2002-05-01

    The development of therapeutics for the control of tumor angiogenesis requires a simple, reliable in vivo assay for tumor-induced vascularization. For this purpose, we have adapted the orthotopic implantation model of angiogenesis by using human and rodent tumors genetically tagged with Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein (GFP) for grafting into nude mice. Genetically-fluorescent tumors can be readily imaged in vivo. The non-luminous induced capillaries are clearly visible against the bright tumor fluorescence examined either intravitally or by whole-body luminance in real time. Fluorescence shadowing replaces the laborious histological techniques for determining blood vessel density. High-level GFP-expressing tumor cell lines made it possible to acquire the high-resolution real-time fluorescent optical images of angiogenesis in both primary tumors and their metastatic lesions in various human and rodent tumor models by means of a light-based imaging system. Intravital images of angiogenesis onset and development were acquired and quantified from a GFP- expressing orthotopically-growing human prostate tumor over a 19-day period. Whole-body optical imaging visualized vessel density increasing linearly over a 20-week period in orthotopically-growing, GFP-expressing human breast tumor MDA-MB-435. Vessels in an orthotopically-growing GFP- expressing Lewis lung carcinoma tumor were visualized through the chest wall via a reversible skin flap. These clinically-relevant angiogenesis mouse models can be used for real-time in vivo evaluation of agents inhibiting or promoting tumor angiogenesis in physiological micro- environments.

  15. Photoactive yellow protein-based protein labeling system with turn-on fluorescence intensity.

    PubMed

    Hori, Yuichiro; Ueno, Hideki; Mizukami, Shin; Kikuchi, Kazuya

    2009-11-25

    Protein labeling provides significant information about protein function. In this research, we developed a novel protein labeling technique by utilizing photoactive yellow protein (PYP). PYP is a small protein (14 kDa) derived from purple bacteria and binds to 7-hydroxycoumarin-3-carboxylic acid as well as to a natural ligand, 4-hydroxycinnamic acid, through a thioester bond with Cys69. Based on the structure and fluorescence property of this coumarin derivative, we designed two fluorescent probes that bind to PYP. One has an azido moiety, which allows stepwise labeling by click chemistry, and the other is a fluorogenic probe. The live-cell imaging and specific labeling of PYP were achieved by using both probes. The flexibility of the probe design and the small size of the tag protein are great advantages of this system against the existing methods. This novel labeling technique can be used in a wide variety of applications for biological research. PMID:19877615

  16. Circularly permuted monomeric red fluorescent proteins with new termini in the beta-sheet.

    PubMed

    Carlson, Haley J; Cotton, Darrel W; Campbell, Robert E

    2010-08-01

    Circularly permuted fluorescent proteins (FPs) have a growing number of uses in live cell fluorescence biosensing applications. Most notably, they enable the construction of single fluorescent protein-based biosensors for Ca(2+) and other analytes of interest. Circularly permuted FPs are also of great utility in the optimization of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based biosensors by providing a means for varying the critical dipole-dipole orientation. We have previously reported on our efforts to create circularly permuted variants of a monomeric red FP (RFP) known as mCherry. In our previous work, we had identified six distinct locations within mCherry that tolerated the insertion of a short peptide sequence. Creation of circularly permuted variants with new termini at the locations corresponding to the sites of insertion led to the discovery of three permuted variants that retained no more than 18% of the brightness of mCherry. We now report the extensive directed evolution of the variant with new termini at position 193 of the protein sequence for improved fluorescent brightness. The resulting variant, known as cp193g7, has 61% of the intrinsic brightness of mCherry and was found to be highly tolerant of circular permutation at other locations within the sequence. We have exploited this property to engineer an expanded series of circularly permuted variants with new termini located along the length of the 10th beta-strand of mCherry. These new variants may ultimately prove useful for the creation of single FP-based Ca(2+) biosensors. PMID:20521333

  17. Application of fluorescence resonance energy transfer in protein studies

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Linlin; Yang, Fan; Zheng, Jie

    2014-01-01

    Since the physical process of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) was elucidated more than six decades ago, this peculiar fluorescence phenomenon has turned into a powerful tool for biomedical research due to its compatibility in scale with biological molecules as well as rapid developments in novel fluorophores and optical detection techniques. A wide variety of FRET approaches have been devised, each with its own advantages and drawbacks. Especially in the last decade or so, we are witnessing a flourish of FRET applications in biological investigations, many of which exemplify clever experimental design and rigorous analysis. Here we review the current stage of FRET methods development with the main focus on its applications in protein studies in biological systems, by summarizing the basic components of FRET techniques, most established quantification methods, as well as potential pitfalls, illustrated by example applications. PMID:25368432

  18. Red Fluorescent Proteins: Advanced Imaging Applications and Future Design

    PubMed Central

    Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Subach, Oksana M.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2015-01-01

    In the past few years a large series of the advanced red-shifted fluorescent proteins (RFPs) has been developed. These enhanced RFPs provide new possibilities to study biological processes at the levels ranging from single molecules to whole organisms. Herein the relationship between the properties of the RFPs of different phenotypes and their applications to various imaging techniques are described. Existing and emerging imaging approaches are discussed for conventional RFPs, far-red FPs, RFPs with a large Stokes shift, fluorescent timers, irreversibly photoactivatable and reversibly photo-switchable RFPs. Advantages and limitations of specific RFPs for each technique are presented. Recent progress in understanding the chemical transformations of red chromophores allows the future RFP phenotypes and their respective novel imaging applications to be foreseen. PMID:22851529

  19. Engineering and exploitation of a fluorescent HIV-1 gp120 for live cell CD4 binding assays

    SciTech Connect

    Costantini, Lindsey M.; Irvin, Susan C.; Kennedy, Steven C.; Guo, Feng; Goldstein, Harris; Herold, Betsy C.; Snapp, Erik L.

    2015-02-15

    The HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein, gp120, binds the host cell receptor, CD4, in the initial step of HIV viral entry and infection. This process is an appealing target for the development of inhibitory drugs and neutralizing antibodies. To study gp120 binding and intracellular trafficking, we engineered a fluorescent fusion of the humanized gp120 JRFL HIV-1 variant and GFP. Gp120-sfGFP is glycosylated with human sugars, robustly expressed, and secreted from cultured human cells. Protein dynamics, quality control, and trafficking can be visualized in live cells. The fusion protein can be readily modified with different gp120 variants or fluorescent proteins. Finally, secreted gp120-sfGFP enables a sensitive and easy binding assay that can quantitatively screen potential inhibitors of gp120-CD4 binding on live cells via fluorescence imaging or laser scanning cytometry. This adaptable research tool should aid in studies of gp120 cell biology and the development of novel anti-HIV drugs. - Highlights: • Development of fluorescent protein labeled HIV-1 envelope gp120. • Imaging of gp120 dynamics and trafficking in live cells. • Quantitative visual assay of antibody-mediated inhibition of gp120 binding to CD4 on live cells.

  20. Single molecule fluorescence experiments determine protein folding transition path times

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Hoi Sung; McHale, Kevin; Louis, John M.; Eaton, William A.

    2013-01-01

    The transition path is the tiny fraction of an equilibrium molecular trajectory when a transition occurs by crossing the free-energy barrier between two states. It is a single-molecule property that contains all the mechanistic information on how a process occurs. As a step toward observing transition paths in protein folding we determined the average transition-path time for a fast- and a slow-folding protein from a photon-by-photon analysis of fluorescence trajectories in single-molecule Förster-resonance-energy-transfer experiments. While the folding rate coefficients differ by a factor of 10,000, the transition-path times differ by less than a factor of 5, showing that a fast-and a slow-folding protein take almost the same time to fold when folding actually happens. A very simple model based on energy landscape theory can explain this result. PMID:22363011

  1. Nucleic acid encoding a self-assembling split-fluorescent protein system

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2015-07-14

    The invention provides a protein labeling and detection system based on self-complementing fragments of fluorescent and chromophoric proteins. The system of the invention is exemplified with various combinations of self-complementing fragments derived from Aequorea victoria Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP), which are used to detect and quantify protein solubility in multiple assay formats, both in vitro and in vivo.

  2. Nucleic acid encoding a self-assembling split-fluorescent protein system

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2011-06-07

    The invention provides a protein labeling and detection system based on self-complementing fragments of fluorescent and chromophoric proteins. The system of the invention is exemplified with various combinations of self-complementing fragments derived from Aequorea victoria Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP), which are used to detect and quantify protein solubility in multiple assay formats, both in vitro and in vivo.

  3. Nucleic acid encoding a self-assembling split-fluorescent protein system

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S; Cabantous, Stephanie

    2014-04-01

    The invention provides a protein labeling and detection system based on self-complementing fragments of fluorescent and chromophoric proteins. The system of the invention is exemplified with various combinations of self-complementing fragments derived from Aequorea victoria Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP), which are used to detect and quantify protein solubility in multiple assay formats, both in vitro and in vivo.

  4. Investigating protein-protein interactions in living cells using fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Yuansheng; Day, Richard N; Periasamy, Ammasi

    2011-01-01

    Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) is now routinely used for dynamic measurements of signaling events inside living cells, including detection of protein-protein interactions. An understanding of the basic physics of fluorescence lifetime measurements is required to use this technique. In this protocol, we describe both the time-correlated single photon counting and the frequency-domain methods for FLIM data acquisition and analysis. We describe calibration of both FLIM systems, and demonstrate how they are used to measure the quenched donor fluorescence lifetime that results from Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET ). We then show how the FLIM-FRET methods are used to detect the dimerization of the transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer binding protein-α in live mouse pituitary cell nuclei. Notably, the factors required for accurate determination and reproducibility of lifetime measurements are described. With either method, the entire protocol including specimen preparation, imaging and data analysis takes ~2 d. PMID:21886099

  5. Deep-tissue multiphoton fluorescence lifetime microscopy for intravital imaging of protein-protein interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fruhwirth, G. O.; Matthews, D. R.; Brock, A.; Keppler, M.; Vojnovic, B.; Ng, T.; Ameer-Beg, S.

    2009-02-01

    Fluorescent lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) has proven to be a valuable tool in beating the Rayleigh criterion for light microscopy by measuring Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) between two fluorophores. Applying multiphoton FLIM, we previously showed in a human breast cancer cell line that recycling of a membrane receptorgreen fluorescent protein fusion is enhanced concomitantly with the formation of a receptor:protein kinase C α complex in the endosomal compartment. We have extended this established technique to probe direct protein-protein interactions also in vivo. Therefore, we used various expressible fluorescent tags fused to membrane receptor molecules in order to generate stable two-colour breast carcinoma cell lines via controlled retroviral infection. We used these cell lines for establishing a xenograft tumour model in immune-compromised Nude mice. Using this animal model in conjunction with scanning Ti:Sapphire laser-based two-photon excitation, we established deep-tissue multiphoton FLIM in vivo. For the first time, this novel technique enables us to directly assess donor fluorescence lifetime changes in vivo and we show the application of this method for intravital imaging of direct protein-protein interactions.

  6. Cis-trans photoisomerization of fluorescent-protein chromophores.

    PubMed

    Voliani, Valerio; Bizzarri, Ranieri; Nifosì, Riccardo; Abbruzzetti, Stefania; Grandi, Elena; Viappiani, Cristiano; Beltram, Fabio

    2008-08-28

    Photochromic variants of fluorescent proteins are opening the way to a number of opportunities for high-sensitivity regioselective studies in the cellular environment and may even lead to applications in information and communication technology. Yet, the detailed photophysical processes at the basis of photoswitching have not been fully clarified. In this paper, we used synthetic FP chromophores to clarify the photophysical processes associated with the photochromic behavior. In particular, we investigated the spectral modification of synthetic chromophore analogues of wild-type green fluorescent protein (GFP), Y66F GFP (BFPF), and Y66W GFP (CFP) upon irradiation in solutions of different polarities. We found that the cis-trans photoisomerization mechanism can be induced in all the chromophores. The structural assignments were carried out both by NMR measurements and DFT calculations. Remarkably, we determined for the first time the spectra of neutral trans isomers in different solvents. Finally, we calculated the photoconversion quantum yields by absorption measurements under continuous illumination at different times and by a nanosecond laser-flash photolysis method. Our results indicate that cis-trans photoisomerization is a general mechanism of FP chromophores whose efficiency is modulated by the detailed mutant-specific protein environment. PMID:18671358

  7. Green Fluorescent Protein-Tagged Retroviral Envelope Protein for Analysis of Virus-Cell Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Spitzer, Dirk; Dittmar, Kurt E. J.; Rohde, Manfred; Hauser, Hansjörg; Wirth, Dagmar

    2003-01-01

    Fluorescent retroviral envelope (Env) proteins were developed for direct visualization of viral particles. By fusing the enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) to the N terminus of the amphotropic 4070A envelope protein, extracellular presentation of eGFP was achieved. Viruses incorporated the modified Env protein and efficiently infected cells. We used the GFP-tagged viruses for staining retrovirus receptor-positive cells, thereby circumventing indirect labeling techniques. By generating cells which conditionally expressed the GFP-tagged Env protein, we could confirm an inverse correlation between retroviral Env expression and infectivity (superinfection). eGFP-tagged virus particles are suitable for monitoring the dynamics of virus-cell interactions. PMID:12719600

  8. Cyanine-based probe\\tag-peptide pair fluorescence protein imaging and fluorescence protein imaging methods

    DOEpatents

    Mayer-Cumblidge, M. Uljana; Cao, Haishi

    2013-01-15

    A molecular probe comprises two arsenic atoms and at least one cyanine based moiety. A method of producing a molecular probe includes providing a molecule having a first formula, treating the molecule with HgOAc, and subsequently transmetallizing with AsCl.sub.3. The As is liganded to ethanedithiol to produce a probe having a second formula. A method of labeling a peptide includes providing a peptide comprising a tag sequence and contacting the peptide with a biarsenical molecular probe. A complex is formed comprising the tag sequence and the molecular probe. A method of studying a peptide includes providing a mixture containing a peptide comprising a peptide tag sequence, adding a biarsenical probe to the mixture, and monitoring the fluorescence of the mixture.

  9. Localized entrapment of green fluorescent protein within nanostructured polymer films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ankner, John; Kozlovskaya, Veronika; O'Neill, Hugh; Zhang, Qiu; Kharlampieva, Eugenia

    2012-02-01

    Protein entrapment within ultrathin polymer films is of interest for applications in biosensing, drug delivery, and bioconversion, but controlling protein distribution within the films is difficult. We report on nanostructured protein/polyelectrolyte (PE) materials obtained through incorporation of green fluorescent protein (GFP) within poly(styrene sulfonate)/poly(allylamine hydrochloride) multilayer films assembled via the spin-assisted layer-by-layer method. By using deuterated GFP as a marker for neutron scattering contrast we have inferred the architecture of the films in both normal and lateral directions. We find that films assembled with a single GFP layer exhibit a strong localization of the GFP without intermixing into the PE matrix. The GFP volume fraction approaches the monolayer density of close-packed randomly oriented GFP molecules. However, intermixing of the GFP with the PE matrix occurs in multiple-GFP layer films. Our results yield new insight into the organization of immobilized proteins within polyelectrolyte matrices and open opportunities for fabrication of protein-containing films with well-organized structure and controllable function, a crucial requirement for advanced sensing applications.

  10. Green Fluorescent Protein as a Visual Marker in Somatic Hybridization

    PubMed Central

    OLIVARES‐FUSTER, O.; PEÑA, L.; DURAN‐VILA, N.; NAVARRO, L.

    2002-01-01

    Using a transgenic citrus plant expressing Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) as a parent in somatic fusion experiments, we investigated the suitability of GFP as an in vivo marker to follow the processes of protoplast fusion, regeneration and selection of hybrid plants. A high level of GFP expression was detected in transgenic citrus protoplasts, hybrid callus, embryos and plants. It is demonstrated that GFP can be used for the continuous monitoring of the fusion process, localization of hybrid colonies and callus, and selection of somatic hybrid embryos and plants. PMID:12096810

  11. Fluorescent, bioactive protein nanoparticles (prodots) for rapid, improved cellular uptake.

    PubMed

    Deshapriya, Inoka K; Stromer, Bobbi S; Pattammattel, Ajith; Kim, Christina S; Iglesias-Bartolome, Ramiro; Gonzalez-Fajardo, Laura; Patel, Vyomesh; Gutkind, J Silvio; Lu, Xiuling; Kumar, Challa V

    2015-03-18

    A simple and effective method for synthesizing highly fluorescent, protein-based nanoparticles (Prodots) and their facile uptake into the cytoplasm of cells is described here. Prodots made from bovine serum albumin (nBSA), glucose oxidase (nGO), horseradish peroxidase (nHRP), catalase (nCatalase), and lipase (nLipase) were found to be 15-50 nm wide and have been characterized by gel electrophoresis, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), circular dichroism (CD), fluorescence spectroscopy, dynamic light scattering (DLS), and optical microscopic methods. Data showed that the secondary structure of the protein in Prodots is retained to a significant extent and specific activities of nGO, nHRP, nCatalase, and nLipase were 80%, 70%, 65%, and 50% of their respective unmodified enzyme activities. Calorimetric studies indicated that the denaturation temperatures of nGO and nBSA increased while those of other Prodots remained nearly unchanged, and accelerated storage half-lives of Prodots at 60 °C increased by 4- to 8-fold. Exposure of nGO and nBSA+ nGO to cells indicated rapid uptake within 1-3 h, accompanied by significant blebbing of the plasma membrane, but no uptake has been noted in the absence of nGO. The presence of nGO/glucose in the media facilitated the uptake, and hydrogen peroxide induced membrane permeability could be responsible for this rapid uptake of Prodots. In control studies, FITC alone did not enter the cell, BSA-FITC was not internalized even in the presence of nGO, and there has been no uptake of nBSA-FITC in the absence of nGO. These are the very first examples of very rapid cellular uptake of fluorescent nanoparticles into cells, particularly nanoparticles made from pure proteins. The current approach is a simple and efficient method for the preparation of bioactive, fluorescent protein nanoparticles of controllable size for cellular imaging, and cell uptake is under the control of two separate chemical triggers. PMID:25642999

  12. Fluorescent Proteins in Cellular Organelles: Serious Pitfalls and Some Solutions

    PubMed Central

    Costantini, Lindsey M.

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) have been powerful tools for cell biologists for over 15 years. The large variety of FPs available rarely comes with an instruction manual or a warning label. The potential pitfalls of the use of FPs in cellular organelles represent a significant concern for investigators. FPs generally did not evolve in the often distinctive physicochemical environments of subcellular organelles. In organelles, FPs can misfold, go dark, and even distort organelle morphology. In this minireview, we describe the issues associated with FPs in organelles and provide solutions to enable investigators to better exploit FP technology in cells. PMID:23971632

  13. Green fluorescent protein-based expression screening of membrane proteins in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Bird, Louise E; Rada, Heather; Verma, Anil; Gasper, Raphael; Birch, James; Jennions, Matthew; Lӧwe, Jan; Moraes, Isabel; Owens, Raymond J

    2015-01-01

    The production of recombinant membrane proteins for structural and functional studies remains technically challenging due to low levels of expression and the inherent instability of many membrane proteins once solubilized in detergents. A protocol is described that combines ligation independent cloning of membrane proteins as GFP fusions with expression in Escherichia coli detected by GFP fluorescence. This enables the construction and expression screening of multiple membrane protein/variants to identify candidates suitable for further investment of time and effort. The GFP reporter is used in a primary screen of expression by visualizing GFP fluorescence following SDS polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Membrane proteins that show both a high expression level with minimum degradation as indicated by the absence of free GFP, are selected for a secondary screen. These constructs are scaled and a total membrane fraction prepared and solubilized in four different detergents. Following ultracentrifugation to remove detergent-insoluble material, lysates are analyzed by fluorescence detection size exclusion chromatography (FSEC). Monitoring the size exclusion profile by GFP fluorescence provides information about the mono-dispersity and integrity of the membrane proteins in different detergents. Protein: detergent combinations that elute with a symmetrical peak with little or no free GFP and minimum aggregation are candidates for subsequent purification. Using the above methodology, the heterologous expression in E. coli of SED (shape, elongation, division, and sporulation) proteins from 47 different species of bacteria was analyzed. These proteins typically have ten transmembrane domains and are essential for cell division. The results show that the production of the SEDs orthologues in E. coli was highly variable with respect to the expression levels and integrity of the GFP fusion proteins. The experiment identified a subset for further investigation. PMID

  14. Expression of recombinant green fluorescent protein in Bacillus methanolicus.

    PubMed

    Nilasari, Dewi; Dover, Nir; Rech, Sabine; Komives, Claire

    2012-01-01

    Microbial biocatalysts are used in a wide range of industries to produce large scale quantities of proteins, amino acids, and commodity chemicals. While the majority of these processes use glucose or other low-cost sugars as the substrate, Bacillus methanolicus is one example of a biocatalyst that has shown sustained growth on methanol as a carbon source at elevated temperature (50-53°C optimum) resulting in reduced feed and utility costs. Specifically, the complete chemical process enabled by this approach takes methane from natural gas, and following a low-cost conversion to methanol, can be used for the production of high value products. In this study, production of recombinant green fluorescent protein (GFPuv) by B. methanolicus is explored. A plasmid was constructed that incorporates the methanol dehydrogenase (mdh) promoter of B. methanolicus MGA3 together with the GFPuv gene. The plasmid, pNW33N, was shown to be effective for expression in other Bacillus strains, although not previously in B. methanolicus. A published electroporation protocol for transformation of B. methanolicus was modified to result in expression of GFP using plasmid pNW33N-mdh-GFPuv (pNmG). Transformation was confirmed by both agarose gel electrophoresis and by observation of green fluorescence under UV light exposure. The mass yield of cells and protein were measured in shake flask experiments. The optimum concentration of methanol for protein production was found to be at 200 mM. Higher concentrations than 200 mM resulted in slightly higher biomass production but lower amounts of recombinant protein. PMID:22275315

  15. Binding phenomena and fluorescence quenching. II: Photophysics of aromatic residues and dependence of fluorescence spectra on protein conformation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callis, Patrik R.

    2014-12-01

    The three amino acids with aromatic ring side chains-phenylalanine (Phe), tyrosine (Tyr), and especially tryptophan (Trp) have played a long and productive role in helping unlock the secrets of protein behavior by optical spectroscopy (absorption, fluorescence, circular dichroism, etc.) In principle, an appropriately placed Trp will undergo fluorescence wavelength and/or intensity changes upon whatever functional process a protein performs. Although perceived to be enigmatic and not well understood, Trp is arguably now better understood than many of the extrinsic probes currently in use. Basic principles of intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence quenching and wavelength shifts in proteins are presented, with strong emphasis on the importance of electrostatics. The condensed description of findings from recent experiments and simulations of tryptophan fluorescence and intrinsic quenching in proteins is designed to help authors in planning and interpreting experimental results of ligand binding studies.

  16. Ground-State Proton Transfer Kinetics in Green Fluorescent Protein

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Proton transfer plays an important role in the optical properties of green fluorescent protein (GFP). While much is known about excited-state proton transfer reactions (ESPT) in GFP occurring on ultrafast time scales, comparatively little is understood about the factors governing the rates and pathways of ground-state proton transfer. We have utilized a specific isotopic labeling strategy in combination with one-dimensional 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to install and monitor a 13C directly adjacent to the GFP chromophore ionization site. The chemical shift of this probe is highly sensitive to the protonation state of the chromophore, and the resulting spectra reflect the thermodynamics and kinetics of the proton transfer in the NMR line shapes. This information is complemented by time-resolved NMR, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, and steady-state absorbance and fluorescence measurements to provide a picture of chromophore ionization reactions spanning a wide time domain. Our findings indicate that proton transfer in GFP is described well by a two-site model in which the chromophore is energetically coupled to a secondary site, likely the terminal proton acceptor of ESPT, Glu222. Additionally, experiments on a selection of GFP circular permutants suggest an important role played by the structural dynamics of the seventh β-strand in gating proton transfer from bulk solution to the buried chromophore. PMID:25184668

  17. Anaerobic green fluorescent protein as a marker of Bifidobacterium strains.

    PubMed

    Landete, José M; Peirotén, Ángela; Rodríguez, Eva; Margolles, Abelardo; Medina, Margarita; Arqués, Juan L

    2014-04-01

    Some strains of Bifidobacterium are considered as probiotics and are being added as adjunct culture in food products due to their potential in maintaining a healthy intestinal microbial balance. However, despite these benefits, bifidobacteria still remain poorly understood at the genetic level compared with other microorganisms of industrial interest. In this work, we have developed a non-invasive green fluorescent based reporter system for real-time tracking of Bifidobacterium species in vivo. The reporter vector pNZ:Tu-GFPana is based on the pNZ8048 plasmid harboring a bifidobacterial promoter (elongation factor Tu from Bifidobacterium longum CECT 4551) and a fluorescent protein containing a flavin-mono-nucleotide-based cofactor (evoglow-Pp1) which is fluorescent under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions. pNZ:Tu-GFPana was constructed and found to stably replicate in B. longum CECT 4551 and in the intestinal strain Bifidobacterium breve INIA P734. The subsequent analysis of these strains allowed us to assess the functionality of this plasmid. Our results demonstrate the potential of pNZ:Tu-GFPana as a real-time reporter system for Bifidobacterium in order to track the behavior of this probiotic species in complex environments like food or intestinal microbiota, and to estimate their competition and colonization potential. PMID:24495586

  18. Analysis of protein-ligand interactions by fluorescence polarization

    PubMed Central

    Rossi, Ana M.; Taylor, Colin W.

    2011-01-01

    Quantification of the associations between biomolecules is required both to predict and understand the interactions that underpin all biological activity. Fluorescence polarization (FP) provides a non-disruptive means of measuring the association of a fluorescent ligand with a larger molecule. We describe an FP assay in which binding of fluorescein-labelled inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) to N-terminal fragments of IP3 receptors can be characterised at different temperatures and in competition with other ligands. The assay allows the standard Gibbs free energy (ΔG°), enthalpy (ΔH°) and entropy (ΔS°) changes of ligand binding to be determined. The method is applicable to any purified ligand-binding site for which an appropriate fluorescent ligand is available. FP can be used to measure low-affinity interactions in real-time without use of radioactive materials, it is non-destructive, and with appropriate care it can resolve ΔH° and ΔS°. The first part of the protocol, protein preparation, may take several weeks, while the FP measurements, once they have been optimised, would normally take 1-6 h. PMID:21372817

  19. Engineering enhanced protein disaggregases for neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Jackrel, Meredith E; Shorter, James

    2015-01-01

    Protein misfolding and aggregation underpin several fatal neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). There are no treatments that directly antagonize the protein-misfolding events that cause these disorders. Agents that reverse protein misfolding and restore proteins to native form and function could simultaneously eliminate any deleterious loss-of-function or toxic gain-of-function caused by misfolded conformers. Moreover, a disruptive technology of this nature would eliminate self-templating conformers that spread pathology and catalyze formation of toxic, soluble oligomers. Here, we highlight our efforts to engineer Hsp104, a protein disaggregase from yeast, to more effectively disaggregate misfolded proteins connected with PD, ALS, and FTD. Remarkably subtle modifications of Hsp104 primary sequence yielded large gains in protective activity against deleterious α-synuclein, TDP-43, FUS, and TAF15 misfolding. Unusually, in many cases loss of amino acid identity at select positions in Hsp104 rather than specific mutation conferred a robust therapeutic gain-of-function. Nevertheless, the misfolding and toxicity of EWSR1, an RNA-binding protein with a prion-like domain linked to ALS and FTD, could not be buffered by potentiated Hsp104 variants, indicating that further amelioration of disaggregase activity or sharpening of substrate specificity is warranted. We suggest that neuroprotection is achievable for diverse neurodegenerative conditions via surprisingly subtle structural modifications of existing chaperones. PMID:25738979

  20. Engineering enhanced protein disaggregases for neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Jackrel, Meredith E; Shorter, James

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Protein misfolding and aggregation underpin several fatal neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). There are no treatments that directly antagonize the protein-misfolding events that cause these disorders. Agents that reverse protein misfolding and restore proteins to native form and function could simultaneously eliminate any deleterious loss-of-function or toxic gain-of-function caused by misfolded conformers. Moreover, a disruptive technology of this nature would eliminate self-templating conformers that spread pathology and catalyze formation of toxic, soluble oligomers. Here, we highlight our efforts to engineer Hsp104, a protein disaggregase from yeast, to more effectively disaggregate misfolded proteins connected with PD, ALS, and FTD. Remarkably subtle modifications of Hsp104 primary sequence yielded large gains in protective activity against deleterious α-synuclein, TDP-43, FUS, and TAF15 misfolding. Unusually, in many cases loss of amino acid identity at select positions in Hsp104 rather than specific mutation conferred a robust therapeutic gain-of-function. Nevertheless, the misfolding and toxicity of EWSR1, an RNA-binding protein with a prion-like domain linked to ALS and FTD, could not be buffered by potentiated Hsp104 variants, indicating that further amelioration of disaggregase activity or sharpening of substrate specificity is warranted. We suggest that neuroprotection is achievable for diverse neurodegenerative conditions via surprisingly subtle structural modifications of existing chaperones. PMID:25738979

  1. Aequorea green fluorescent protein analysis by flow cytometry

    SciTech Connect

    Ropp, J.D.; Cuthbertson, R.A.; Donahue, C.J.; Wolfgang-Kimball, D.

    1995-12-01

    The isolation and expression of the cDNA for the green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the bioluminescent jellyfish Aequorea victoria has highlighted its potential use as a marker for gene expression in a variety of cell types. The longer wavelength peak (470 nm) of GFP`s bimodal absorption spectrum better matches standard fluorescein filter sets; however, it has a considerably lower amplitude than the major absorption peak at 395. In an effort to increase the sensitivity of GFP with routinely available instrumentation, Heim et al. have generated a GFP mutant (serine-65 to threonine; S65T-GFP) which possesses a single absorption peak centered at 490 nm. We have constructed this mutant in order to determine whether it or wild-type GFP (wt-GFP) afforded greater sensitivity when excited near their respective absorption maxima. Using the conventionally available 488 nm and ultraviolet (UV) laser lines from the argon ion laser as well as the 407 nm line from a krypton ion laser with enhanced violet emission, we were able to closely match the absorption maxima of both the S65T and wild-type forms of Aequorea GFP and analyze differences in fluorescence intensity of transiently transfected 293 cells with flow cytometry. The highest fluorescence signal was observed with 488 nm excitation of S65T-GFP relative to all other laser line/GFP pairs. The wt-GFP fluorescence intensity, in contrast, was significantly higher at 407 nm relative to either 488 nm or UV. These results were consistent with parallel spectrofluorometric analysis of the emission spectrum for wt-GFP and S65T- GFP. The relative contribution of cellular autofluorescence at each wavelength was also investigated and shown to be significantly reduced at 407 nm relative to either UV or 488 nm. 29 refs., 5 figs.

  2. Characterization of flavonoid-protein interactions using fluorescence spectroscopy: Binding of pelargonidin to dairy proteins.

    PubMed

    Arroyo-Maya, Izlia J; Campos-Terán, José; Hernández-Arana, Andrés; McClements, David Julian

    2016-12-15

    In this study, the interaction between the flavonoid pelargonidin and dairy proteins: β-lactoglobulin (β-LG), whey protein (WPI), and caseinate (CAS) was investigated. Fluorescence experiments demonstrated that pelargonidin quenched milk proteins fluorescence strongly. However, the protein secondary structure was not significantly affected by pelargonidin, as judged from far-UV circular dichroism. Analysis of fluorescence data indicated that pelargonidin-induced quenching does not arise from a dynamical mechanism, but instead is due to protein-ligand binding. Therefore, quenching data were analyzed using the model of independent binding sites. Both β-LG and CAS, but not WPI, showed hyperbolic binding isotherms indicating that these proteins firmly bound pelargonidin at both pH 7.0 and 3.0 (binding constants ca. 1.0×10(5) at 25.0°C). To investigate the underlying thermodynamics, binding constants were determined at 25.0, 35.0, and 45.0°C. These results pointed to binding processes that depend on the structural conformation of the milk proteins. PMID:27451201

  3. Plasmon-enhanced emission from single fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donehue, Jessica E.; Haas, Beth L.; Wertz, Esther; Talicska, Courtney N.; Biteen, Julie S.

    2013-02-01

    In this work, we use evaporated gold nanoparticle films (GNPFs) as substrates for plasmon-enhanced imaging of two fluorescent proteins (FPs): mCherry and YFP. Through single-molecule epifluorescence microscopy, we show enhancement of single FP emission in the presence of GNPFs. The gold-coupled FPs demonstrate emission up to four times brighter and seven times longer lived, yielding order-of-magnitude enhancements in total photons detected. Ultimately, this results in increased localization accuracies for single-molecule imaging. Furthermore, we introduce preliminary results for enhancement of mCherry-labeled TcpP membrane proteins inside live Vibrio cholerae cells coupled to GNPFs. Our work indicates that plasmonic substrates are uniquely advantageous for super-resolution imaging and that plasmon-enhanced imaging is a promising technique for improving live cell single-molecule microscopy.

  4. Fluorescent Probe Encapsulated in SNAP-Tag Protein Cavity To Eliminate Nonspecific Fluorescence and Increase Detection Sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Yan-Syun; Gao, Ruo-Cing; Wu, Ting-Wei; Cho, Chien; Tan, Kui-Thong

    2016-08-17

    Despite the promising improvements made recently on fluorescence probes for the detection of enzymes and reactive small molecules, two fundamental problems remain: weaker fluorescence of many dyes in aqueous buffers and strong nonspecific signals in samples containing high protein levels. In this paper, we introduce a novel fluorescent probe encapsulated in protein cavity (FPEPC) concept as demonstrated by SNAP-tag protein and three environment-sensitive fluorescence probes to overcome these two problems. The probes were constructed by following the current probe design for enzymes and reactive small molecules but with an additional benzylguanine moiety for selective SNAP-tag conjugation. The SNAP-tag conjugated probes achieved quantitative nitroreductase and hydrogen sulfide detection in blood plasma, whereas analyte concentrations were overestimated up to 700-fold when bare fluorescent probes were employed for detection. Furthermore, detection sensitivity was increased dramatically, as our probes displayed 390-fold fluorescence enhancement upon SNAP-tag conjugation, in stark contrast to the weak fluorescence of the free probes in aqueous solutions. Compared with the conventional approaches where fluorescent probes are encapsulated into polymers and nanoparticles, our simple and general approach successfully overcame many key issues such as dye leakage, long preparation steps, inconsistent dye-host ratios, difficulty in constructing in situ in a complex medium, and limited application to detect only small metabolites. PMID:27463260

  5. Cell-based and in vivo spectral analysis of fluorescent proteins for multiphoton microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salomonnson, Emma; Mihalko, Laura Anne; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Luker, Kathryn E.; Luker, Gary D.

    2012-09-01

    Multiphoton microscopy of cells and subcellular structures labeled with fluorescent proteins is the state-of-the-art technology for longitudinal imaging studies in tissues and living animals. Successful analysis of separate cell populations or signaling events by intravital microscopy requires optimal pairing of multiphoton excitation wavelengths with spectrally distinct fluorescent proteins. While prior studies have analyzed two photon absorption properties of isolated fluorescent proteins, there is limited information about two photon excitation and fluorescence emission profiles of fluorescent proteins expressed in living cells and intact tissues. Multiphoton microscopy was used to analyze fluorescence outputs of multiple blue, green, and red fluorescent proteins in cultured cells and orthotopic tumor xenografts of human breast cancer cells. It is shown that commonly used orange and red fluorescent proteins are excited efficiently by 750 to 760 nm laser light in living cells, enabling dual color imaging studies with blue or cyan proteins without changing excitation wavelength. It is also shown that small incremental changes in excitation wavelength significantly affect emission intensities from fluorescent proteins, which can be used to optimize multi-color imaging using a single laser wavelength. These data will direct optimal selection of fluorescent proteins for multispectral two photon microscopy.

  6. Proton transfer and water exchange in the green fluorescent protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agmon, Noam

    2014-03-01

    The green fluorescent protein (GFP) is the only naturally occurring protein in which excited-state proton-transfer has been identified. Upon excitation, a proton is ejected from its chromophore, travelling through the ``privileged water molecule'' (PWM) and Ser205 to Glu222, on a 10 ps timescale or faster. However, time-resolved fluorescence from the chromophore exhibits a t-α power-law decay extending into the ns regime. With increasing temperature, α switches from 1/2 (below 230 K) to 3/2 (above it). This has been interpreted as pseudo one-dimensional proton hopping along an internal ``proton wire,'' with an activated process that opens a ``doorway'' for proton escape to solution at the higher temperatures. To identify such putative pathways, we have developed a computer code mapping all ``proton wires'' within a protein structure. Applying it to a X-ray GFP structure of 0.9 Angstrom resolution, a proton wire indeed continues from Glu222 along the axis of the GFP ``barrel,'' connecting to a negatively charged surface patch (a ``proton collecting antenna''?). This might explain the t- 1 / 2 behavior. However, a direct escape pathway opening from the chromophore to solution is not readily identified in the X-ray structure. Here we report molecular dynamics results showing that the PWM escapes to solution on the 100 ps timescale. This occurs by fluctuations of the beta-sheet, creating an opening through which water molecules can leave and enter the protein. The exact pathway of the PWM on its way in and out has been identified, as well as the water-exchange kinetics that follows a stretched-exponential time behavior. This research was supported by the ISRAEL SCIENCE FOUNDATION grant No. 766/12.

  7. Fluorescent detection of C-reactive protein using polyamide beads

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jagadeesh, Shreesha; Chen, Lu; Aitchison, Stewart

    2016-03-01

    Bacterial infection causes Sepsis which is one of the leading cause of mortality in hospitals. This infection can be quantified from blood plasma using C - reactive protein (CRP). A quick diagnosis at the patient's location through Point-of- Care (POC) testing could give doctors the confidence to prescribe antibiotics. In this paper, the development and testing of a bead-based procedure for CRP quantification is described. The size of the beads enable them to be trapped in wells without the need for magnetic methods of immobilization. Large (1.5 mm diameter) Polyamide nylon beads were used as the substrate for capturing CRP from pure analyte samples. The beads captured CRP either directly through adsorption or indirectly by having specific capture antibodies on their surface. Both methods used fluorescent imaging techniques to quantify the protein. The amount of CRP needed to give a sufficient fluorescent signal through direct capture method was found suitable for identifying bacterial causes of infection. Similarly, viral infections could be quantified by the more sensitive indirect capture method. This bead-based assay can be potentially integrated as a disposable cartridge in a POC device due to its passive nature and the small quantities needed.

  8. An engineered chaperonin caging a guest protein: Structural insights and potential as a protein expression tool

    PubMed Central

    Furutani, Masahiro; Hata, Jun-Ichi; Shomura, Yasuhito; Itami, Keisuke; Yoshida, Takao; Izumoto, Yoshitaka; Togi, Akiko; Ideno, Akira; Yasunaga, Takuo; Miki, Kunio; Maruyama, Tadashi

    2005-01-01

    The structure of a chaperonin caging a substrate protein is not quite clear. We made engineered group II chaperonins fused with a guest protein and analyzed their structural and functional features. Thermococcus sp. KS-1 chaperonin α-subunit (TCP) which forms an eightfold symmetric double-ring structure was used. Expression plasmids were constructed which carried two or four TCP genes ligated head to tail in phase and a target protein gene at the 3′ end of the linked TCP genes. Electron microscopy showed that the expressed gene products with the molecular sizes of ~120 kDa (di-TCP) and ~230 kDa (tetra-TCP) formed double-ring complexes similar to those of wild-type TCP. The tetra-TCP retained ATPase activity and its thermostability was significantly higher than that of the wild type. A 260-kDa fusion protein of tetra-TCP and green fluorescent protein (GFP, 27 kDa) was able to form the double-ring complexes with green fluorescence. Image analyses indicated that the GFP moiety of tetra-TCP/GFP fusion protein was accommodated in the central cavity, and tetra-TCP/GFP formed the closed-form similar to that crystallographically resolved in group II chaperonins. Furthermore, it was suggested that caging GFP expanded the cavity around the bottom. Using this tetra-TCP fusion strategy, two virus structural proteins (21–25 kDa) toxic to host cells or two antibody fragments (25–36 kDa) prone to aggregate were well expressed in the soluble fraction of Escherichia coli. These fusion products also assembled to double-ring complexes, suggesting encapsulation of the guest proteins. The antibody fragments liberated by site-specific protease digestion exhibited ligand-binding activities. PMID:15659368

  9. Analysis of green fluorescent protein bioluminescence in vivo and in vitro using a glow discharge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernández, L.; Mandujano, L. A.; Cuevas, J.; Reyes, P. G.; Osorio-González, D.

    2015-03-01

    The discovery of fluorescent proteins has been a revolution in cell biology and related sciences because of their many applications, mainly emphasizing their use as cellular markers. The green fluorescent protein (GFP) is one of the most used as it requires no cofactors to generate fluorescence and retains this property into any organism when it is expressed by recombinant DNA techniques, which is a great advantage. In this work, we analyze the emission spectra of recombinant green fluorescent protein in vivo and in vitro exposed to a glow discharge plasma of nitrogen in order to relate electron temperature to fluorescence intensity.

  10. Applications of yeast surface display for protein engineering

    PubMed Central

    Cherf, Gerald M.; Cochran, Jennifer R.

    2015-01-01

    The method of displaying recombinant proteins on the surface of Saccharomyces cerevisiae via genetic fusion to an abundant cell wall protein, a technology known as yeast surface display, or simply, yeast display, has become a valuable protein engineering tool for a broad spectrum of biotechnology and biomedical applications. This review focuses on the use of yeast display for engineering protein affinity, stability, and enzymatic activity. Strategies and examples for each protein engineering goal are discussed. Additional applications of yeast display are also briefly presented, including protein epitope mapping, identification of protein-protein interactions, and uses of displayed proteins in industry and medicine. PMID:26060074

  11. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray characterization of the genetically encoded fluorescent calcium indicator protein GCaMP2

    SciTech Connect

    Rodríguez Guilbe, María M.; Alfaro Malavé, Elisa C.; Akerboom, Jasper; Marvin, Jonathan S.; Looger, Loren L.; Schreiter, Eric R.

    2008-07-01

    The genetically encoded fluorescent calcium-indicator protein GCaMP2 was crystallized in the calcium-saturated form. X-ray diffraction data were collected to 2.0 Å resolution and the structure was solved by molecular replacement. Fluorescent proteins and their engineered variants have played an important role in the study of biology. The genetically encoded calcium-indicator protein GCaMP2 comprises a circularly permuted fluorescent protein coupled to the calcium-binding protein calmodulin and a calmodulin target peptide, M13, derived from the intracellular calmodulin target myosin light-chain kinase and has been used to image calcium transients in vivo. To aid rational efforts to engineer improved variants of GCaMP2, this protein was crystallized in the calcium-saturated form. X-ray diffraction data were collected to 2.0 Å resolution. The crystals belong to space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 126.1, b = 47.1, c = 68.8 Å, β = 100.5° and one GCaMP2 molecule in the asymmetric unit. The structure was phased by molecular replacement and refinement is currently under way.

  12. Protein and Antibody Engineering by Phage Display.

    PubMed

    Frei, J C; Lai, J R

    2016-01-01

    Phage display is an in vitro selection technique that allows for the rapid isolation of proteins with desired properties including increased affinity, specificity, stability, and new enzymatic activity. The power of phage display relies on the phenotype-to-genotype linkage of the protein of interest displayed on the phage surface with the encoding DNA packaged within the phage particle, which allows for selective enrichment of library pools and high-throughput screening of resulting clones. As an in vitro method, the conditions of the binding selection can be tightly controlled. Due to the high-throughput nature, rapidity, and ease of use, phage display is an excellent technological platform for engineering antibody or proteins with enhanced properties. Here, we describe methods for synthesis, selection, and screening of phage libraries with particular emphasis on designing humanizing antibody libraries and combinatorial scanning mutagenesis libraries. We conclude with a brief section on troubleshooting for all stages of the phage display process. PMID:27586328

  13. A fluorescent, genetically engineered microorganism that degrades organophosphates and commits suicide when required.

    PubMed

    Li, Qin; Wu, Yi-Jun

    2009-03-01

    One way to reduce the potential risk of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) to the environment is to use a containment system that does not interfere with the performance of the GEM until activated. Such a system can be created by inserting a suicide cassette consisting of a toxin-encoding gene controlled by an inducible promoter. We constructed a GEM that can degrade organophosphorus compounds, emit green fluorescence, and commit suicide when required by putting the genes that control these different functions under different promoters. The genes for enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) and organophosphorus hydrolase (OPH) were cloned downstream of the lambda PL promoter in the plasmid pBV220. These genes could be expressed freely as long as the GEM was metabolizing because the repressor sequence cIts857 had been deleted. The extracellular nuclease gene of Serratia marcescens, without its leader-coding sequence, provided the suicide mechanism. This was put under the control of the T7 promoter to form a suicide cassette activated by the presence of an environmental signal, in this case, arabinose. To improve the reliability of this containment system, the suicide cassette was duplicated within the conditional suicide plasmid. The plasmid carrying the EGFP and OPH fusion genes and that containing the suicide cassette were compatible and coexisted in the same host. PMID:19183984

  14. Interpretation of fluorescence decays in proteins using continuous lifetime distributions.

    PubMed Central

    Alcala, J R; Gratton, E; Prendergast, F G

    1987-01-01

    The decay of the tryptophanyl emission in proteins is often complex due to the sensitivity of the tryptophan excited state to its surroundings. The traditional analysis of the decay curve using exponential components is based on the identification of each component with a particular protein conformation. An alternative approach assumes that proteins can exhibit a large number of conformations and that, at room temperature, the interconversion rate between conformations can be of the same order of magnitude as the excited-state decay rate. Following this assumption, the analysis of the protein emission was performed using continuous distributions of lifetime values. The number of average protein conformations, the range of mobility around each conformation, and the rate of interconversion between conformations determines the characteristics of the lifetime distribution. The fluorescence decay from some single tryptophan proteins was measured using multifrequency phase fluorometry and analyzed using a sum of exponentials, unimodal and bimodal probability-density functions, and the analytical form for lifetime distribution obtained for a model in which the tryptophan residue can move in a single potential well. For ribonuclease T1 and neurotoxin variant 3, the sum of two exponentials and bimodal probability-density functions gave comparable results, whereas for phospholipase A2, the description of the decay required three exponentials or bimodal probability-density functions. Also the temperature dependence of the fluorescence decay was investigated. It was found that the lifetime distribution was broader and shifted toward longer lifetime values at lower temperature. The analysis of the decay of tryptophan in buffer and of some tryptophan derivatives gave single-exponential decays. The single-potential well lifetime distribution, which has only three adjustable parameters, gave good fits for all cases investigated, but in the case of phopholipase A2, the temperature

  15. Lentiviral Delivery of Proteins for Genome Engineering.

    PubMed

    Cai, Yujia; Mikkelsen, Jacob Giehm

    2016-01-01

    Viruses have evolved to traverse cellular barriers and travel to the nucleus by mechanisms that involve active transport through the cytoplasm and viral quirks to resist cellular restriction factors and innate immune responses. Virus-derived vector systems exploit the capacity of viruses to ferry genetic information into cells, and now - more than three decades after the discovery of HIV - lentiviral vectors based on HIV-1 have become instrumental in biomedical research and gene therapies that require genomic insertion of transgenes. By now, the efficacy of lentiviral gene delivery to stem cells, cells of the immune system including T cells, hepatic cells, and many other therapeutically relevant cell types is well established. Along with nucleic acids, HIV-1 virions carry the enzymatic tools that are essential for early steps of infection. Such capacity to package enzymes, even proteins of nonviral origin, has unveiled new ways of exploiting cellular intrusion of HIV-1. Based on early findings demonstrating the packaging of heterologous proteins into virus particles as part of the Gag and GagPol polypeptides, we have established lentiviral protein transduction for delivery of DNA transposases and designer nucleases. This strategy for delivering genome-engineering proteins facilitates high enzymatic activity within a short time frame and may potentially improve the safety of genome editing. Exploiting the full potential of lentiviral vectors, incorporation of foreign protein can be combined with the delivery of DNA transposons or a donor sequence for homology-directed repair in so-called 'all-in-one' lentiviral vectors. Here, we briefly describe intracellular restrictions that may affect lentiviral gene and protein delivery and review the current status of lentiviral particles as carriers of tool kits for genome engineering. PMID:27228988

  16. Directed evolution methods for improving polypeptide folding and solubility and superfolder fluorescent proteins generated thereby

    DOEpatents

    Waldo, Geoffrey S.

    2007-09-18

    The current invention provides methods of improving folding of polypeptides using a poorly folding domain as a component of a fusion protein comprising the poorly folding domain and a polypeptide of interest to be improved. The invention also provides novel green fluorescent proteins (GFPs) and red fluorescent proteins that have enhanced folding properties.

  17. Three-color femtosecond source for simultaneous excitation of three fluorescent proteins in two-photon fluorescence microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ke; Liu, Tzu-Ming; Wu, Juwell; Horton, Nicholas G.; Lin, Charles P.; Xu, Chris

    2012-01-01

    We demonstrate a fiber-based, three-color femtosecond source for simultaneous imaging of three fluorescent proteins (FPs) using two-photon fluorescence microscopy (2PM). The three excitation wavelengths at 775 nm, 864 nm and 950 nm, are obtained through second harmonic generation (SHG) of the 1550-nm pump laser and the 1728-nm and 1900-nm solitons generated through soliton self-frequency shift (SSFS) in a large-mode-area (LMA) fiber. These energetic pulses are well matched to the two-photon excitation peaks of red, cyan and yellow fluorescent proteins (TagRFPs, TagCFPs, and TagYFPs) for efficient excitation. We demonstrate simultaneous 2PM of human melanoma cells expressing a “rainbow” combination of these three fluorescent proteins. PMID:23024893

  18. Protein fragment bimolecular fluorescence complementation analyses for the in vivo study of protein-protein interactions and cellular protein complex localizations.

    PubMed

    Waadt, Rainer; Schlücking, Kathrin; Schroeder, Julian I; Kudla, Jörg

    2014-01-01

    The analyses of protein-protein interactions are crucial for understanding cellular processes including signal transduction, protein trafficking, and movement. Protein fragment complementation assays are based on the reconstitution of protein function when non-active protein fragments are brought together by interacting proteins that were genetically fused to these protein fragments. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) relies on the reconstitution of fluorescent proteins and enables both the analysis of protein-protein interactions and the visualization of protein complex formations in vivo. Transient expression of proteins is a convenient approach to study protein functions in planta or in other organisms and minimizes the need for time-consuming generation of stably expressing transgenic organisms. Here we describe protocols for BiFC analyses in Nicotiana benthamiana and Arabidopsis thaliana leaves transiently transformed by Agrobacterium infiltration. Further, we discuss different BiFC applications and provide examples for proper BiFC analyses in planta. PMID:24057390

  19. Probing protein targeting to plasmodesmata using fluorescence recovery after photo-bleaching.

    PubMed

    Wright, Kathryn M; MacKenzie, Katrin M

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescence recovery after photo-bleaching (FRAP) involves the irreversible bleaching of a fluorescent protein within a specific area of the cell using a high-intensity laser. The recovery of fluorescence represents the movement of new protein into this area and can therefore be used to investigate factors involved in this movement. Here we describe a FRAP method to investigate the effect of a range of pharmacological agents on the targeting of Tobacco mosaic virus movement protein to plasmodesmata. PMID:25287209

  20. Fluorescence lifetime images of different green fluorescent proteins in fly brain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lai, Sih-Yu; Lin, Y. Y.; Chiang, A. S.; Huang, Y. C.

    2009-02-01

    The mechanisms of learning and memory are the most important functions in an animal brain. Investigating neuron circuits and network maps in a brain is the first step toward understanding memory and learning behavior. Since Drosophila brain is the major model for understanding brain functions, we measure the florescence lifetimes of different GFP-based reporters expressed in a fly brain. In this work, two Gal4 drivers, OK 107 and MZ 19 were used. Intracellular calcium ([Ca2+]) concentration is an importation indicator of neuronal activity. Therefore, several groups have developed GFP-based calcium sensors, among which G-CaMP is the most popular and reliable. The fluorescence intensity of G-CaMP will increase when it binds to calcium ion; however, individual variation from different animals prevents quantitative research. In this work, we found that the florescence lifetime of G-CaMP will shrink from 1.8 ns to 1.0 ns when binding to Ca2+. This finding can potentially help us to understand the neuron circuits by fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM). Channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) is a light-activated ion-channel protein on a neuron cell membrane. In this work, we express ChR2 and G-CaMP in a fly brain. Using a pulsed 470-nm laser to activate the neurons, we can also record the fluorescence lifetime changes in the structure. Hence, we can trace and manipulate a specific circuit in this animal. This method provides more flexibility in brain research.

  1. Nanostructured functional films from engineered repeat proteins

    PubMed Central

    Grove, Tijana Z.; Regan, Lynne; Cortajarena, Aitziber L.

    2013-01-01

    Fundamental advances in biotechnology, medicine, environment, electronics and energy require methods for precise control of spatial organization at the nanoscale. Assemblies that rely on highly specific biomolecular interactions are an attractive approach to form materials that display novel and useful properties. Here, we report on assembly of films from the designed, rod-shaped, superhelical, consensus tetratricopeptide repeat protein (CTPR). We have designed three peptide-binding sites into the 18 repeat CTPR to allow for further specific and non-covalent functionalization of films through binding of fluorescein labelled peptides. The fluorescence signal from the peptide ligand bound to the protein in the solid film is anisotropic, demonstrating that CTPR films can impose order on otherwise isotropic moieties. Circular dichroism measurements show that the individual protein molecules retain their secondary structure in the film, and X-ray scattering, birefringence and atomic force microscopy experiments confirm macroscopic alignment of CTPR molecules within the film. This work opens the door to the generation of innovative biomaterials with tailored structure and function. PMID:23594813

  2. A fluorescence resonance energy transfer-derived structure of a quantum dot-protein bioconjugate nanoassembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medintz, I. L.; Konnert, J. H.; Clapp, A. R.; Stanish, I.; Twigg, M. E.; Mattoussi, H.; Mauro, J. M.; Deschamps, J. R.

    2004-06-01

    The first generation of luminescent semiconductor quantum dot (QD)-based hybrid inorganic biomaterials and sensors is now being developed. It is crucial to understand how bioreceptors, especially proteins, interact with these inorganic nanomaterials. As a model system for study, we use Rhodamine red-labeled engineered variants of Escherichia coli maltose-binding protein (MBP) coordinated to the surface of 555-nm emitting CdSe-ZnS core-shell QDs. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer studies were performed to determine the distance from each of six unique MBP-Rhodamine red dye-acceptor locations to the center of the energy-donating QD. In a strategy analogous to a nanoscale global positioning system determination, we use the intraassembly distances determined from the fluorescence resonance energy transfer measurements, the MBP crystallographic coordinates, and a least-squares approach to determine the orientation of the MBP relative to the QD surface. Results indicate that MBP has a preferred orientation on the QD surface. The refined model is in agreement with other evidence, which indicates coordination of the protein to the QD occurs by means of its C-terminal pentahistidine tail, and the size of the QD estimated from the model is in good agreement with physical measurements of QD size. The approach detailed here may be useful in determining the orientation of proteins in other hybrid protein-nanoparticle materials. To our knowledge, this is the first structural model of a hybrid luminescent QD-protein receptor assembly elucidated by using spectroscopic measurements in conjunction with crystallographic and other data. maltose-binding protein | three-dimensional structure | nanotechnology | nanocrystal

  3. Photonic reagents for concentration measurement of flu-orescent proteins with overlapping spectra

    PubMed Central

    Goun, Alexei; Bondar, Denys I.; Er, Ali O.; Quine, Zachary; Rabitz, Herschel A.

    2016-01-01

    By exploiting photonic reagents (i.e., coherent control by shaped laser pulses), we employ Optimal Dynamic Discrimination (ODD) as a novel means for quantitatively characterizing mixtures of fluorescent proteins with a large spectral overlap. To illustrate ODD, we simultaneously measured concentrations of in vitro mixtures of Enhanced Blue Fluorescent Protein (EBFP) and Enhanced Cyan Fluorescent Protein (ECFP). Building on this foundational study, the ultimate goal is to exploit the capabilities of ODD for parallel monitoring of genetic and protein circuits by suppressing the spectral cross-talk among multiple fluorescent reporters. PMID:27181496

  4. Intrinsic Fluorescence as a Spectral Probe for Protein Denaturation Studies in the Presence of Honey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Y. H.; Kadir, H. A.; Tayyab, S.

    2015-11-01

    Honey was found to quench the intrinsic fluorescence of bovine serum albumin (BSA) in a concentration dependent manner, showing complete quenching in the presence of 5% (w/v) honey. Increasing the protein concentration up to 5.0 μM did not lead to the recovery of the protein fluorescence. Urea denaturation of BSA, which otherwise shows a two-step, three-state transition, using intrinsic fluorescence of the protein as the probe failed to produce any result in the presence of 5% (w/v) honey. Thus, intrinsic fluorescence cannot be used as a spectral probe for protein denaturation studies in the presence of honey.

  5. Photonic reagents for concentration measurement of flu-orescent proteins with overlapping spectra.

    PubMed

    Goun, Alexei; Bondar, Denys I; Er, Ali O; Quine, Zachary; Rabitz, Herschel A

    2016-01-01

    By exploiting photonic reagents (i.e., coherent control by shaped laser pulses), we employ Optimal Dynamic Discrimination (ODD) as a novel means for quantitatively characterizing mixtures of fluorescent proteins with a large spectral overlap. To illustrate ODD, we simultaneously measured concentrations of in vitro mixtures of Enhanced Blue Fluorescent Protein (EBFP) and Enhanced Cyan Fluorescent Protein (ECFP). Building on this foundational study, the ultimate goal is to exploit the capabilities of ODD for parallel monitoring of genetic and protein circuits by suppressing the spectral cross-talk among multiple fluorescent reporters. PMID:27181496

  6. Photonic reagents for concentration measurement of flu-orescent proteins with overlapping spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goun, Alexei; Bondar, Denys I.; Er, Ali O.; Quine, Zachary; Rabitz, Herschel A.

    2016-05-01

    By exploiting photonic reagents (i.e., coherent control by shaped laser pulses), we employ Optimal Dynamic Discrimination (ODD) as a novel means for quantitatively characterizing mixtures of fluorescent proteins with a large spectral overlap. To illustrate ODD, we simultaneously measured concentrations of in vitro mixtures of Enhanced Blue Fluorescent Protein (EBFP) and Enhanced Cyan Fluorescent Protein (ECFP). Building on this foundational study, the ultimate goal is to exploit the capabilities of ODD for parallel monitoring of genetic and protein circuits by suppressing the spectral cross-talk among multiple fluorescent reporters.

  7. Quenching of photoexcited states of the proteins chromophores and introduced into the protein macromolecules fluorescent probes by heavy metal ions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melnikov, A. G.; Dyachuk, O. A.; Melnikov, G. V.

    2015-03-01

    We have studied the processes of quenching of photoexcited states of fluorescent probes and quenching of the fluorescence of the chromophores of human serum albumin (HSA) by heavy metal ions (HM): cations Tl+, Pb2+, Cu2+, Cd2+, and the anion of iodine (I-). We used the dye from xanthene series - eosin as a fluorescent probe. By quenching of the fluorescence of protein chromophores we found an influence of HM on the structure of proteins, resulting in a shift of the peak of the fluorescence of HSA tryptophanyl. This can be explained by proteins denaturation under the influence of heavy metals and penetration of water into the inner environment of HSA tryptophan. It was established that the constant of the quenching of the probe phosphorescence is much higher than the fluorescence, which is explained by significantly longer lifetime of the photoexcited states of fluorescent probes in the triplet state than in the singlet.

  8. Highly Fluorescent Green Fluorescent Protein Chromophore Analogues Made by Decorating the Imidazolone Ring.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, Sara; Martínez-López, David; Morón, María; Sucunza, David; Sampedro, Diego; Domingo, Alberto; Salgado, Antonio; Vaquero, Juan J

    2015-12-14

    The synthesis and photophysical behavior of an unexplored family of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-like chromophore analogues is reported. The compound (Z)-4-(4-hydroxybenzylidene)-1-propyl-2-(propylamino)-1H-imidazol-5(4 H)-one (p-HBDNI, 2 a) exhibits significantly enhanced fluorescence properties relative to the parent compound (Z)-5-(4-hydroxybenzylidene)-2,3-dimethyl-3,5-dihydro-4H-imidazol-4-one (p-HBDI, 1). p-HBDNI was considered as a model system and the photophysical properties of other novel 2-amino-3,5-dihydro-4H-imidazol-4-one derivatives were evaluated. Time-dependent DFT calculations were carried out to rationalize the results. The analogue AIDNI (2 c), in which the 4-hydroxybenzyl group of p-HBDNI was replaced by an azaindole group, showed improved photophysical properties and potential for cell staining. The uptake and intracellular distribution of 2 c in living cells was investigated by confocal microscopy imaging. PMID:26525155

  9. A General Strategy for the Semisynthesis of Ratiometric Fluorescent Sensor Proteins with Increased Dynamic Range.

    PubMed

    Xue, Lin; Prifti, Efthymia; Johnsson, Kai

    2016-04-27

    We demonstrate how a combination of self-labeling protein tags and unnatural amino acid technology permits the semisynthesis of ratiometric fluorescent sensor proteins with unprecedented dynamic range in vitro and on live cells. To generate such a sensor, a binding protein is labeled with a fluorescent competitor of the analyte using SNAP-tag in conjugation with a second fluorophore that is positioned in vicinity of the binding site of the binding protein using unnatural amino acid technology. Binding of the analyte by the sensor displaces the tethered fluorescent competitor from the binding protein and disrupts fluorescence resonance energy transfer between the two fluorophores. Using this design principle, we generate a ratiometric fluorescent sensor protein for methotrexate that exhibits large dynamic ranges both in vitro (ratio changes up to 32) and on cell surfaces (ratio change of 13). The performance of these semisynthetic sensor proteins makes them attractive for applications in basic research and diagnostics. PMID:27071001

  10. From jellyfish to biosensors: the use of fluorescent proteins in plants.

    PubMed

    Voss, Ute; Larrieu, Antoine; Wells, Darren M

    2013-01-01

    The milestone discovery of green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria, its optimisation for efficient use in plantae, and subsequent improvements in techniques for fluorescent detection and quantification have changed plant molecular biology research dramatically. Using fluorescent protein tags allows the temporal and spatial monitoring of dynamic expression patterns at tissue, cellular and subcellular scales. Genetically-encoded fluorescence has become the basis for applications such as cell-type specific transcriptomics, monitoring cell fate and identity during development of individual organs or embryos, and visualising protein-protein interactions in vivo. In this article, we will give an overview of currently available fluorescent proteins, their applications in plant research, the techniques used to analyse them and, using the recent development of an auxin sensor as an example, discuss the design principles and prospects for the next generation of fluorescent plant biosensors. PMID:24166435

  11. Engineered Amp C β-lactamase as a fluorescent screening tool for class C β-lactamase inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Tsang, Man-Wah; Chan, Pak-Ho; So, Pui-Kin; Ma, Dik-Lung; Tsang, Chun-Wai; Wong, Kwok-Yin; Leung, Yun-Chung

    2011-03-15

    Class C β-lactamases mediate antibiotic resistance in bacteria by efficiently hydrolyzing a broad range of β-lactam antibiotics. With their clinical significance and the lack of commercially available effective inhibitors, development of class C β-lactamase inhibitors has become one of the recent hot issues in the pharmaceutical industry. In this paper, we report the protein engineering of a fluorescent Amp C β-lactamase mutant designated as V211Cf for the in vitro screening of class C β-lactamase inhibitors. When a fluorescein (f) was incorporated at the entrance of the enzyme's active site (position 211), Amp C β-lactamase from Enterobacter cloacae P99 was tailor-made into a novel fluorescent biosensing protein that could display a fluorescence enhancement upon binding with its β-lactam substrates/inhibitors. With its catalytic activity close to the wild-type level, V211Cf can act as a "natural" fluorescent drug target for screening small binding molecules. In addition, V211Cf can allow specific detection for its active-site binding molecules and discriminate them from nondruglike molecules in the screen. Furthermore, V211Cf is amenable to a high throughput format. Taken together, V211Cf demonstrates the potential as an efficient tool for screening class C β-lactamase inhibitors and facilitates the discovery of therapeutics that can combat the clinically important class C β-lactamases. PMID:21338058

  12. Fluorescent Proteins as Genetically Encoded FRET Biosensors in Life Sciences

    PubMed Central

    Hochreiter, Bernhard; Pardo Garcia, Alan; Schmid, Johannes A.

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescence- or Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a measurable physical energy transfer phenomenon between appropriate chromophores, when they are in sufficient proximity, usually within 10 nm. This feature has made them incredibly useful tools for many biomedical studies on molecular interactions. Furthermore, this principle is increasingly exploited for the design of biosensors, where two chromophores are linked with a sensory domain controlling their distance and thus the degree of FRET. The versatility of these FRET-biosensors made it possible to assess a vast amount of biological variables in a fast and standardized manner, allowing not only high-throughput studies but also sub-cellular measurements of biological processes. In this review, we aim at giving an overview over the recent advances in genetically encoded, fluorescent-protein based FRET-biosensors, as these represent the largest and most vividly growing group of FRET-based sensors. For easy understanding, we are grouping them into four categories, depending on their molecular mechanism. These are based on: (a) cleavage; (b) conformational-change; (c) mechanical force and (d) changes in the micro-environment. We also address the many issues and considerations that come with the development of FRET-based biosensors, as well as the possibilities that are available to measure them. PMID:26501285

  13. Green Fluorescent Protein as a Reporter To Monitor Gene Expression and Food Colonization by Aspergillus flavus

    PubMed Central

    Du, Wanglei; Huang, Zhengyu; Flaherty, Joseph E.; Wells, Kevin; Payne, Gary A.

    1999-01-01

    Transformants of Aspergillus flavus containing the Aequorea victoria gfp gene fused to a viral promoter or the promoter region and 483 bp of the coding region of A. flavus aflR expressed green fluorescence detectable without a microscope or filters. Expression of green fluorescent protein fluorescence was correlated with resistance to aflatoxin accumulation in five corn genotypes inoculated with these transformants. PMID:9925624

  14. Dual fluorescence detection of protein and RNA in Drosophila tissues

    PubMed Central

    Toledano, Hila; D’Alterio, Cecilia; Loza-Coll, Mariano; Jones, D Leanne

    2015-01-01

    Detection of RNAs by in situ hybridization (ISH) is a well-established technique that permits the study of specific RNA expression patterns in tissues; however, not all tissues are equally amenable to staining using the same procedure. Here we describe a protocol that combines whole-mount immunofluorescence (IF) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) for the simultaneous detection of specific RNA transcripts and proteins, greatly enhancing the spatial resolution of RNA expression in complex, intact fly tissues. To date, we have successfully used this protocol in adult testis, larval male gonads, adult intestine and Malpighian tubules. IF is conducted in RNase-free solutions, prior to the harsh conditions of FISH, in order to preserve protein antigenicity within dissected tissues. Separate protocols are described for mRNA and miRNA detection, which are based on robust digoxigenin (DIG) RNA and locked nucleic acid (LNA) probes, respectively. The combined IF-FISH procedure can be completed in 2 d for miRNA detection and 4 d for mRNA detection. Although optimized for Drosophila, this IF-FISH protocol should be adaptable to a wide variety of organisms, tissues, antibodies and probes, thus providing a reliable and simple means to compare RNA and protein abundance and localization. PMID:22976352

  15. Fluorescence microscopy methods in the study of protein structure and function.

    PubMed

    Jensen-Smith, Heather; Currall, Benjamin; Rossino, Danielle; Tiede, LeAnn; Nichols, Michael; Hallworth, Richard

    2009-01-01

    As more and more proteins specific to hair cells are discovered, it becomes imperative to understand their structure and how that contributes to their function. The fluorescence microscopic methods described here can be employed to provide information on protein-protein interactions, whether homomeric or heteromeric, and on protein conformation. Here, we describe two fluorescence microscopic methodologies applied to the outer hair cell-specific membrane protein prestin: the intensity and fluorescence lifetime (FLIM) variants of FRET (Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer), used in the study of protein-protein interactions, and the Scanning Cysteine Accessibility Method (SCAM), used for the determination of protein conformation. The methods are readily adaptable to other proteins. PMID:18839359

  16. Single-molecule fluorescence imaging to quantify membrane protein dynamics and oligomerization in living plant cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiaohua; Li, Xiaojuan; Deng, Xin; Luu, Doan-Trung; Maurel, Christophe; Lin, Jinxing

    2015-12-01

    Measuring the mobility and interactions of proteins is key to understanding cellular signaling mechanisms; however, quantitative analysis of protein dynamics in living plant cells remains a major challenge. Here we describe an automated, single-molecule protocol based on total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy (TIRFM) imaging that allows protein tracking and subunit counting in living plant cells. This protocol uses TIRFM to image transgenic plant tissues expressing fluorescently tagged proteins that are localized to the plasma membrane. Next, a tracking algorithm quantifies dynamic changes in fluorescent protein motion types, temporary particle displacement and protein photobleaching steps. This protocol allows researchers to study the kinetic characteristics of heterogeneously distributed proteins. The approach has potential applications for studies of protein dynamics and subunit stoichiometry for a wide variety of plasma membrane and intracellular proteins in living plant cells and other biological specimens visualized by TIRFM or other fluorescence imaging techniques. The whole protocol can be completed in 5-6 h. PMID:26584445

  17. Fluorescent protein-based biosensors: resolving spatiotemporal dynamics of signaling

    PubMed Central

    DiPilato, Lisa M.; Zhang, Jin

    2009-01-01

    Summary Cellular processes are orchestrated by the precise coordination and regulation of molecular events in the cell. Fluorescent protein-based biosensors coupled with live-cell imaging have enabled the visualization of these events in real time and helped shape some of the current concepts of signal transduction, such as spatial compartmentation. The quantitative information produced by these tools has been incorporated into mathematical models that are capable of predicting highly complex and dynamic behaviors of cellular signaling networks, thus providing a systems level understanding of how pathways interact to produce a functional response. Finally, with technological advances in high throughput and in vivo imaging, these molecular tools promise to continually engender significant contributions to our understanding of cellular processes under normal and diseased conditions. PMID:19910237

  18. Probing redox proteins on a gold surface by single molecule fluorescence spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elmalk, Abdalmohsen T.; Salverda, Jante M.; Tabares, Leandro C.; Canters, Gerard W.; Aartsma, Thijs J.

    2012-06-01

    The interaction between the fluorescently labeled redox protein, azurin, and a thin gold film is characterized using single-molecule fluorescence intensity and lifetime measurements. Fluorescence quenching starts at distances below 2.3 nm from the gold surface. At shorter distances the quantum yield may decrease down to fourfold for direct attachment of the protein to bare gold. Outside of the quenching range, up to fivefold enhancement of the fluorescence is observed on average with increasing roughness of the gold layer. Fluorescence-detected redox activity of individual azurin molecules, with a lifetime switching ratio of 0.4, is demonstrated for the first time close to a gold surface.

  19. Characterization of a novel component of the peroxisomal protein import apparatus using fluorescent peroxisomal proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Kalish, J E; Keller, G A; Morrell, J C; Mihalik, S J; Smith, B; Cregg, J M; Gould, S J

    1996-01-01

    Fluorescent peroxisomal probes were developed by fusing green fluorescent protein (GFP) to the matrix peroxisomal targeting signals PTS1 and PTS2, as well as to an integral peroxisomal membrane protein (IPMP). These proteins were used to identify and characterize novel peroxisome assembly (pas) mutants in the yeast Pichia pastoris. Mutant cells lacking the PAS10 gene mislocalized both PTS1-GFP and PTS2-GFP to the cytoplasm but did incorporate IPMP-GFP into peroxisome membranes. Similar distributions were observed for endogenous peroxisomal matrix and membrane proteins. While peroxisomes from translocation-competent pas mutants sediment in sucrose gradients at the density of normal peroxisomes, >98% of peroxisomes from pas10 cells migrated to a much lower density and had an extremely low ratio of matrix:membrane protein. These data indicate that Pas10p plays an important role in protein translocation across the peroxisome membrane. Consistent with this hypothesis, we find that Pas10p is an integral protein of the peroxisome membrane. In addition, Pas10p contains a cytoplasmically-oriented C3HC4 zinc binding domain that is essential for its biological activity. Images PMID:8670828

  20. Excited-state structural dynamics of a dual-emission calmodulin-green fluorescent protein sensor for calcium ion imaging.

    PubMed

    Oscar, Breland G; Liu, Weimin; Zhao, Yongxin; Tang, Longteng; Wang, Yanli; Campbell, Robert E; Fang, Chong

    2014-07-15

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) have played a pivotal role in bioimaging and advancing biomedicine. The versatile fluorescence from engineered, genetically encodable FP variants greatly enhances cellular imaging capabilities, which are dictated by excited-state structural dynamics of the embedded chromophore inside the protein pocket. Visualization of the molecular choreography of the photoexcited chromophore requires a spectroscopic technique capable of resolving atomic motions on the intrinsic timescale of femtosecond to picosecond. We use femtosecond stimulated Raman spectroscopy to study the excited-state conformational dynamics of a recently developed FP-calmodulin biosensor, GEM-GECO1, for calcium ion (Ca(2+)) sensing. This study reveals that, in the absence of Ca(2+), the dominant skeletal motion is a ∼ 170 cm(-1) phenol-ring in-plane rocking that facilitates excited-state proton transfer (ESPT) with a time constant of ∼ 30 ps (6 times slower than wild-type GFP) to reach the green fluorescent state. The functional relevance of the motion is corroborated by molecular dynamics simulations. Upon Ca(2+) binding, this in-plane rocking motion diminishes, and blue emission from a trapped photoexcited neutral chromophore dominates because ESPT is inhibited. Fluorescence properties of site-specific protein mutants lend further support to functional roles of key residues including proline 377 in modulating the H-bonding network and fluorescence outcome. These crucial structural dynamics insights will aid rational design in bioengineering to generate versatile, robust, and more sensitive optical sensors to detect Ca(2+) in physiologically relevant environments. PMID:24987121

  1. Spectroscopic Analysis of Red Fluorescent Proteins and Development of a Microfluidic Cell Sorter for the Generation of Improved Variants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lubbeck, Jennifer L.

    The discovery of the green fluorescent protein (GFP) launched the development of a wide variety of fluorescent protein (FP) mutants whose spectral and photophysical diversity revolutionized in vivo imaging. The excitation and emission spectra of red fluorescent proteins (RFPs), in particular, have been ideally tuned to a window optically favorable for in vivo work. However, their quantum yields, photostabilities and fluorescence intermittency properties require improvement if they are to be broadly employed for low-copy or single-molecule measurements. Attempts to engineer improved RFPs often result in optimization of one photophysical property at the expense of others. We developed a microfluidic-based cytometer for screening HeLa cell-based genetic RFP-libraries simultaneously on the basis of fluorescence lifetime (a proxy for quantum yield), photostability, and brightness. Ten 532 nm excitation beams interrogate each cell in flow. The first is electro-optically modulated (30 MHz) to enable lifetime measurement with phase fluorimetry. The remaining beams act as a pulse sequence for isolating the irreversible photobleaching time constant. Optical-force switching is employed to sort cells based on any combination of the photophysical parameters. Screening with this instrument enables identification of regions of the structure that synergistically affect quantum yield and photostability and the sorting capability provides a new tool for accelerating the development of next generation RFPs.

  2. Automated High-Throughput Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy to Detect Protein-Protein Interactions.

    PubMed

    Guzmán, Camilo; Oetken-Lindholm, Christina; Abankwa, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is widely used to study conformational changes of macromolecules and protein-protein, protein-nucleic acid, and protein-small molecule interactions. FRET biosensors can serve as valuable secondary assays in drug discovery and for target validation in mammalian cells. Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) allows precise quantification of the FRET efficiency in intact cells, as FLIM is independent of fluorophore concentration, detection efficiency, and fluorescence intensity. We have developed an automated FLIM system using a commercial frequency domain FLIM attachment (Lambert Instruments) for wide-field imaging. Our automated FLIM system is capable of imaging and analyzing up to 50 different positions of a slide in less than 4 min, or the inner 60 wells of a 96-well plate in less than 20 min. Automation is achieved using a motorized stage and controller (Prior Scientific) coupled with a Zeiss Axio Observer body and full integration into the Lambert Instruments FLIM acquisition software. As an application example, we analyze the interaction of the oncoprotein Ras and its effector Raf after drug treatment. In conclusion, our automated FLIM imaging system requires only commercial components and may therefore allow for a broader use of this technique in chemogenomics projects. PMID:26384400

  3. Baculoviral display of the green fluorescent protein and rubella virus envelope proteins.

    PubMed

    Mottershead, D; van der Linden, I; von Bonsdorff, C H; Keinänen, K; Oker-Blom, C

    1997-09-29

    The ability to display heterologous proteins and peptides on the surface of different types of bacteriophage has proven extremely useful in protein structure/function studies. To display such proteins in a eucaryotic environment, we have produced a vector allowing for fusion of proteins to the amino-terminus of the Autographa californica nuclear polyhedrosis virus (AcNPV) major envelope glycoprotein, gp64. Such fusion proteins incorporate into the baculoviral virion and display the FLAG epitope tag. We have further produced recombinant baculoviruses displaying the green fluorescent protein (GFP) and the rubella virus envelope proteins, E1 and E2. The incorporation of the GFPgp64, E1gp64, and E2gp64 fusion proteins into the baculovirus particle was demonstrated by western blot analysis of purified budded virus. This is the first report of the display of the GFP protein or the individual rubella virus spike proteins on the surface of an enveloped virus. Such a eucaryotic viral display system may be useful for the display of proteins dependent on glycosylation for activity and for targeting of recombinant baculoviruses to novel host cell types as a gene transfer vehicle. PMID:9325155

  4. Protein Engineering: A New Frontier for Biological Therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Tobin, Peter H.; Richards, David H.; Callender, Randolph A.

    2016-01-01

    Protein engineering holds the potential to transform the metabolic drug landscape through the development of smart, stimulus-responsive drug systems. Protein therapeutics are a rapidly expanding segment of Food and Drug Administration approved drugs that will improve clinical outcomes over the long run. Engineering of protein therapeutics is still in its infancy, but recent general advances in protein engineering capabilities are being leveraged to yield improved control over both pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. Stimulus-responsive protein therapeutics are drugs which have been designed to be metabolized under targeted conditions. Protein engineering is being utilized to develop tailored smart therapeutics with biochemical logic. This review focuses on applications of targeted drug neutralization, stimulus-responsive engineered protein prodrugs, and emerging multicomponent smart drug systems (e.g., antibody-drug conjugates, responsive engineered zymogens, prospective biochemical logic smart drug systems, drug buffers, and network medicine applications). PMID:25495737

  5. Hybrid assemblies of fluorescent nanocrystals and membrane proteins in liposomes.

    PubMed

    De Leo, Vincenzo; Catucci, Lucia; Falqui, Andrea; Marotta, Roberto; Striccoli, Marinella; Agostiano, Angela; Comparelli, Roberto; Milano, Francesco

    2014-02-18

    Because of the growing potential of nanoparticles in biological and medical applications, tuning and directing their properties toward a high compatibility with the aqueous biological milieu is of remarkable relevance. Moreover, the capability to combine nanocrystals (NCs) with biomolecules, such as proteins, offers great opportunities to design hybrid systems for both nanobiotechnology and biomedical technology. Here we report on the application of the micelle-to-vesicle transition (MVT) method for incorporation of hydrophobic, red-emitting CdSe@ZnS NCs into the bilayer of liposomes. This method enabled the construction of a novel hybrid proteo-NC-liposome containing, as model membrane protein, the photosynthetic reaction center (RC) of Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Electron microscopy confirmed the insertion of NCs within the lipid bilayer without significantly altering the structure of the unilamellar vesicles. The resulting aqueous NC-liposome suspensions showed low turbidity and kept unaltered the wavelengths of absorbance and emission peaks of the native NCs. A relative NC fluorescence quantum yield up to 8% was preserved after their incorporation in liposomes. Interestingly, in proteo-NC-liposomes, RC is not denatured by Cd-based NCs, retaining its structural and functional integrity as shown by absorption spectra and flash-induced charge recombination kinetics. The outlined strategy can be extended in principle to any suitably sized hydrophobic NC with similar surface chemistry and to any integral protein complex. Furthermore, the proposed approach could be used in nanomedicine for the realization of theranostic systems and provides new, interesting perspectives for understanding the interactions between integral membrane proteins and nanoparticles, i.e., in nanotoxicology studies. PMID:24460372

  6. Protein oligomerization monitored by fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy: Self-assembly of Rubisco activase

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A methodology is presented to characterize complex protein assembly pathways by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy. We have derived the total autocorrelation function describing the behavior of mixtures of labeled and unlabeled protein under equilibrium conditions. Our modeling approach allows us...

  7. Engineering and exploitation of a fluorescent HIV-1 gp120 for live cell CD4 binding assays

    PubMed Central

    Costantini, Lindsey M.; Irvin, Susan C.; Kennedy, Steven C.; Guo, Feng; Goldstein, Harris; Herold, Betsy C.; Snapp, Erik L.

    2014-01-01

    The HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein, gp120, binds the host cell receptor, CD4, in the initial step of HIV viral entry and infection. This process is an appealing target for the development of inhibitory drugs and neutralizing antibodies. To study gp120 binding and intracellular trafficking, we engineered a fluorescent fusion of the humanized gp120 JRFL HIV-1 variant and GFP. Gp120-sfGFP is glycosylated with human sugars, robustly expressed, and secreted from cultured human cells. Protein dynamics, quality control, and trafficking can be visualized in live cells. The fusion protein can be readily modified with different gp120 variants or fluorescent proteins. Finally, secreted gp120-sfGFP enables a sensitive and easy binding assay that can quantitatively screen potential inhibitors of gp120-CD4 binding on live cells via fluorescence imaging or laser scanning cytometry. This adaptable research tool should aid in studies of gp120 cell biology and the development of novel anti-HIV drugs. PMID:25555152

  8. pH-Dependent Transient Conformational States Control Optical Properties in Cyan Fluorescent Protein

    PubMed Central

    Laricheva, Elena N.; Goh, Garrett B.; Dickson, Alex

    2015-01-01

    A recently engineered mutant of cyan fluorescent protein (WasCFP) that exhibits pH-dependent absorption suggests that its tryptophan-based chromophore switches between neutral (protonated) and charged (deprotonated) states depending on external pH. At pH 8.1 the latter gives rise to green fluorescence as opposed to the cyan color of emission that is characteristic for the neutral form at low pH. Given the high energy cost of deprotonating the tryptophan at the indole nitrogen, this behavior is puzzling, even if the stabilizing effect of the V61K mutation in the proximity of the protonation/deprotonation site is considered. Due to its potential to open new avenues for the development of optical sensors and photoconvertible fluorescent proteins, a mechanistic understanding of how the charged state in WasCFP can possibly be stabilized is, thus, important. Attributed to the dynamic nature of proteins, such understanding often requires knowledge of the various conformations adopted, including transiently populated conformational states. Transient conformational states triggered by pH are of emerging interest, and have been shown to be important whenever ionizable groups interact with hydrophobic environments. Using a combination of the weighted-ensemble sampling method and explicit solvent constant pH molecular dynamics (CPHMDMSλD) simulations, we have identified a solvated transient state, characterized by a partially open β-barrel where the chromophore pKa of 6.8 is shifted by over 20 units from that in the closed form (6.8 and 31.7, respectively). This state contributes a small population at low pH (12% at pH 6.1), but becomes dominant at mildly basic conditions, contributing as much as 53% at pH 8.1. This pH-dependent population shift between neutral (at pH 6.1) and charged (at pH 8.1) forms is thus responsible for the observed absorption behavior of WasCFP. Our findings demonstrate the conditions necessary to stabilize the charged state of the WasCFP chromophore

  9. A Study on the Effect of Surface Lysine to Arginine Mutagenesis on Protein Stability and Structure Using Green Fluorescent Protein

    PubMed Central

    Sokalingam, Sriram; Raghunathan, Govindan; Soundrarajan, Nagasundarapandian; Lee, Sun-Gu

    2012-01-01

    Two positively charged basic amino acids, arginine and lysine, are mostly exposed to protein surface, and play important roles in protein stability by forming electrostatic interactions. In particular, the guanidinium group of arginine allows interactions in three possible directions, which enables arginine to form a larger number of electrostatic interactions compared to lysine. The higher pKa of the basic residue in arginine may also generate more stable ionic interactions than lysine. This paper reports an investigation whether the advantageous properties of arginine over lysine can be utilized to enhance protein stability. A variant of green fluorescent protein (GFP) was created by mutating the maximum possible number of lysine residues on the surface to arginines while retaining the activity. When the stability of the variant was examined under a range of denaturing conditions, the variant was relatively more stable compared to control GFP in the presence of chemical denaturants such as urea, alkaline pH and ionic detergents, but the thermal stability of the protein was not changed. The modeled structure of the variant indicated putative new salt bridges and hydrogen bond interactions that help improve the rigidity of the protein against different chemical denaturants. Structural analyses of the electrostatic interactions also confirmed that the geometric properties of the guanidinium group in arginine had such effects. On the other hand, the altered electrostatic interactions induced by the mutagenesis of surface lysines to arginines adversely affected protein folding, which decreased the productivity of the functional form of the variant. These results suggest that the surface lysine mutagenesis to arginines can be considered one of the parameters in protein stability engineering. PMID:22792305

  10. Developing Fast Fluorescent Protein Voltage Sensors by Optimizing FRET Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Sung, Uhna; Sepehri-Rad, Masoud; Piao, Hong Hua; Jin, Lei; Hughes, Thomas; Cohen, Lawrence B.; Baker, Bradley J.

    2015-01-01

    FRET (Förster Resonance Energy Transfer)-based protein voltage sensors can be useful for monitoring neuronal activity in vivo because the ratio of signals between the donor and acceptor pair reduces common sources of noise such as heart beat artifacts. We improved the performance of FRET based genetically encoded Fluorescent Protein (FP) voltage sensors by optimizing the location of donor and acceptor FPs flanking the voltage sensitive domain of the Ciona intestinalis voltage sensitive phosphatase. First, we created 39 different “Nabi1” constructs by positioning the donor FP, UKG, at 8 different locations downstream of the voltage-sensing domain and the acceptor FP, mKO, at 6 positions upstream. Several of these combinations resulted in large voltage dependent signals and relatively fast kinetics. Nabi1 probes responded with signal size up to 11% ΔF/F for a 100 mV depolarization and fast response time constants both for signal activation (~2 ms) and signal decay (~3 ms). We improved expression in neuronal cells by replacing the mKO and UKG FRET pair with Clover (donor FP) and mRuby2 (acceptor FP) to create Nabi2 probes. Nabi2 probes also had large signals and relatively fast time constants in HEK293 cells. In primary neuronal culture, a Nabi2 probe was able to differentiate individual action potentials at 45 Hz. PMID:26587834

  11. Developing Fast Fluorescent Protein Voltage Sensors by Optimizing FRET Interactions.

    PubMed

    Sung, Uhna; Sepehri-Rad, Masoud; Piao, Hong Hua; Jin, Lei; Hughes, Thomas; Cohen, Lawrence B; Baker, Bradley J

    2015-01-01

    FRET (Förster Resonance Energy Transfer)-based protein voltage sensors can be useful for monitoring neuronal activity in vivo because the ratio of signals between the donor and acceptor pair reduces common sources of noise such as heart beat artifacts. We improved the performance of FRET based genetically encoded Fluorescent Protein (FP) voltage sensors by optimizing the location of donor and acceptor FPs flanking the voltage sensitive domain of the Ciona intestinalis voltage sensitive phosphatase. First, we created 39 different "Nabi1" constructs by positioning the donor FP, UKG, at 8 different locations downstream of the voltage-sensing domain and the acceptor FP, mKO, at 6 positions upstream. Several of these combinations resulted in large voltage dependent signals and relatively fast kinetics. Nabi1 probes responded with signal size up to 11% ΔF/F for a 100 mV depolarization and fast response time constants both for signal activation (~2 ms) and signal decay (~3 ms). We improved expression in neuronal cells by replacing the mKO and UKG FRET pair with Clover (donor FP) and mRuby2 (acceptor FP) to create Nabi2 probes. Nabi2 probes also had large signals and relatively fast time constants in HEK293 cells. In primary neuronal culture, a Nabi2 probe was able to differentiate individual action potentials at 45 Hz. PMID:26587834

  12. How to Illustrate Ligand-Protein Binding in a Class Experiment: An Elementary Fluorescent Assay.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marty, Alain; And Others

    1986-01-01

    Describes an experiment (taking approximately five hours) which illustrates the binding of a small molecule to a protein. By using an appropriate fluorescent ligand and a given protein, the fluorescent probe technique is applied to measure the number of bonding sites, and number of site classes, and their association constants. (JN)

  13. PROTEIN TEMPLATES IN HARD TISSUE ENGINEERING

    PubMed Central

    George, Anne; Ravindran, Sriram

    2010-01-01

    Biomineralization processes such as formation of bones and teeth require controlled mineral deposition and self-assembly into hierarchical biocomposites with unique mechanical properties. Ideal biomaterials for regeneration and repair of hard tissues must be biocompatible, possess micro and macroporosity for vascular invasion, provide surface chemistry and texture that facilitate cell attachment, proliferation, differentiation of lineage specific progenitor cells, and induce deposition of calcium phosphate mineral. To expect in-vivo like cellular response several investigators have used extracellular matrix proteins as templates to recreate in-vivo microenvironment for regeneration of hard tissues. Recently, several novel methods of designing tissue repair and restoration materials using bioinspired strategies are currently being formulated. Nanoscale structured materials can be fabricated via the spontaneous organization of self-assembling proteins to construct hierarchically organized nanomaterials. The advantage of such a method is that polypeptides can be specifically designed as building blocks incorporated with molecular recognition features and spatially distributed bioactive ligands that would provide a physiological environment for cells in-vitro and in-vivo. This is a rapidly evolving area and provides a promising platform for future development of nanostructured templates for hard tissue engineering. In this review we try to highlight the importance of proteins as templates for regeneration and repair of hard tissues as well as the potential of peptide based nanomaterials for regenerative therapies. PMID:20802848

  14. Localizing Proteins in Fixed Giardia lamblia and Live Cultured Mammalian Cells by Confocal Fluorescence Microscopy.

    PubMed

    Nyindodo-Ogari, Lilian; Schwartzbach, Steven D; Skalli, Omar; Estraño, Carlos E

    2016-01-01

    Confocal fluorescence microscopy and electron microscopy (EM) are complementary methods for studying the intracellular localization of proteins. Confocal fluorescence microscopy provides a rapid and technically simple method to identify the organelle in which a protein localizes but only EM can identify the suborganellular compartment in which that protein is present. Confocal fluorescence microscopy, however, can provide information not obtainable by EM but required to understand the dynamics and interactions of specific proteins. In addition, confocal fluorescence microscopy of cells transfected with a construct encoding a protein of interest fused to a fluorescent protein tag allows live cell studies of the subcellular localization of that protein and the monitoring in real time of its trafficking. Immunostaining methods for confocal fluorescence microscopy are also faster and less involved than those for EM allowing rapid optimization of the antibody dilution needed and a determination of whether protein antigenicity is maintained under fixation conditions used for EM immunogold labeling. This chapter details a method to determine by confocal fluorescence microscopy the intracellular localization of a protein by transfecting the organism of interest, in this case Giardia lamblia, with the cDNA encoding the protein of interest and then processing these organisms for double label immunofluorescence staining after chemical fixation. Also presented is a method to identify the organelle targeting information in the presequence of a precursor protein, in this case the presequence of the precursor to the Euglena light harvesting chlorophyll a/b binding protein of photosystem II precursor (pLHCPII), using live cell imaging of mammalian COS7 cells transiently transfected with a plasmid encoding a pLHCPII presequence fluorescent protein fusion and stained with organelle-specific fluorescent dyes. PMID:27515076

  15. Genetically Encoded FRET-Sensor Based on Terbium Chelate and Red Fluorescent Protein for Detection of Caspase-3 Activity

    PubMed Central

    Goryashchenko, Alexander S.; Khrenova, Maria G.; Bochkova, Anna A.; Ivashina, Tatiana V.; Vinokurov, Leonid M.; Savitsky, Alexander P.

    2015-01-01

    This article describes the genetically encoded caspase-3 FRET-sensor based on the terbium-binding peptide, cleavable linker with caspase-3 recognition site, and red fluorescent protein TagRFP. The engineered construction performs two induction-resonance energy transfer processes: from tryptophan of the terbium-binding peptide to Tb3+ and from sensitized Tb3+ to acceptor—the chromophore of TagRFP. Long-lived terbium-sensitized emission (microseconds), pulse excitation source, and time-resolved detection were utilized to eliminate directly excited TagRFP fluorescence and background cellular autofluorescence, which lasts a fraction of nanosecond, and thus to improve sensitivity of analyses. Furthermore the technique facilitates selective detection of fluorescence, induced by uncleaved acceptor emission. For the first time it was shown that fluorescence resonance energy transfer between sensitized terbium and TagRFP in the engineered construction can be studied via detection of microsecond TagRFP fluorescence intensities. The lifetime and distance distribution between donor and acceptor were calculated using molecular dynamics simulation. Using this data, quantum yield of terbium ions with binding peptide was estimated. PMID:26204836

  16. A novel fluorescent protein from the deep-sea anemone Cribrinopsis japonica (Anthozoa: Actiniaria)

    PubMed Central

    Tsutsui, Kenta; Shimada, Eriko; Ogawa, Tomohisa; Tsuruwaka, Yusuke

    2016-01-01

    A fluorescent protein was identified and cloned from the deep-sea anemone Cribrinopsis japonica. Bioluminescence and fluorescence expression were examined by direct observations of live specimens and RNA-Seq analysis. Both approaches revealed a novel green fluorescent protein in the tentacles of the anemone, but bioluminescence was not observed. Behavioural observations revealed that a blue light excited the fluorescence in the tentacles, and initiated a behavioural response whereby the fluorescent tentacles became fully exposed to the blue light. The excitation and emission peaks of C. japonica’s fluorescent protein were at 500 and 510 nm, respectively, which were greener than those reported in homologs. Furthermore, this protein was highly tolerant of increased temperatures and repeated freeze–thaw treatments. The current study presents an example of fluorescence in a deep-sea cnidarian, demonstrating that fluorescent proteins could have important roles, regardless of the presence or absence of strong sunlight. It also demonstrates that this deep-sea fluorescent protein has unique characteristics, including high stability, perhaps as an adaptation to the extreme environment. PMID:27002644

  17. A novel fluorescent protein from the deep-sea anemone Cribrinopsis japonica (Anthozoa: Actiniaria).

    PubMed

    Tsutsui, Kenta; Shimada, Eriko; Ogawa, Tomohisa; Tsuruwaka, Yusuke

    2016-01-01

    A fluorescent protein was identified and cloned from the deep-sea anemone Cribrinopsis japonica. Bioluminescence and fluorescence expression were examined by direct observations of live specimens and RNA-Seq analysis. Both approaches revealed a novel green fluorescent protein in the tentacles of the anemone, but bioluminescence was not observed. Behavioural observations revealed that a blue light excited the fluorescence in the tentacles, and initiated a behavioural response whereby the fluorescent tentacles became fully exposed to the blue light. The excitation and emission peaks of C. japonica's fluorescent protein were at 500 and 510 nm, respectively, which were greener than those reported in homologs. Furthermore, this protein was highly tolerant of increased temperatures and repeated freeze-thaw treatments. The current study presents an example of fluorescence in a deep-sea cnidarian, demonstrating that fluorescent proteins could have important roles, regardless of the presence or absence of strong sunlight. It also demonstrates that this deep-sea fluorescent protein has unique characteristics, including high stability, perhaps as an adaptation to the extreme environment. PMID:27002644

  18. Engineering cell-fluorescent ion track hybrid detectors

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The lack of sensitive biocompatible particle track detectors has so far limited parallel detection of physical energy deposition and biological response. Fluorescent nuclear track detectors (FNTDs) based on Al2O3:C,Mg single crystals combined with confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) provide 3D information on ion tracks with a resolution limited by light diffraction. Here we report the development of next generation cell-fluorescent ion track hybrid detectors (Cell-Fit-HD). Methods The biocompatibility of FNTDs was tested using six different cell lines, i.e. human non-small cell lung carcinoma (A549), glioblastoma (U87), androgen independent prostate cancer (PC3), epidermoid cancer (A431) and murine (VmDk) glioma SMA-560. To evaluate cell adherence, viability and conformal coverage of the crystals different seeding densities and alternative coating with extracellular matrix (fibronectin) was tested. Carbon irradiation was performed in Bragg peak (initial 270.55 MeV u−1). A series of cell compartment specific fluorescence stains including nuclear (HOECHST), membrane (Glut-1), cytoplasm (Calcein AM, CM-DiI) were tested on Cell-Fit-HDs and a single CLSM was employed to co-detect the physical (crystal) as well as the biological (cell layer) information. Results The FNTD provides a biocompatible surface. Among the cells tested, A549 cells formed the most uniform, viable, tightly packed epithelial like monolayer. The ion track information was not compromised in Cell-Fit-HD as compared to the FNTD alone. Neither cell coating and culturing, nor additional staining procedures affected the properties of the FNTD surface to detect ion tracks. Standard immunofluorescence and live staining procedures could be employed to co-register cell biology and ion track information. Conclusions The Cell-Fit-Hybrid Detector system is a promising platform for a multitude of studies linking biological response to energy deposition at high level of optical microscopy

  19. Multicontrast photoacoustic in vivo imaging using near-infrared fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krumholz, Arie; Shcherbakova, Daria M.; Xia, Jun; Wang, Lihong V.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2014-02-01

    Non-invasive imaging of biological processes in vivo is invaluable in advancing biology. Photoacoustic tomography is a scalable imaging technique that provides higher resolution at greater depths in tissue than achievable by purely optical methods. Here we report the application of two spectrally distinct near-infrared fluorescent proteins, iRFP670 and iRFP720, engineered from bacterial phytochromes, as photoacoustic contrast agents. iRFPs provide tissue-specific contrast without the need for delivery of any additional substances. Compared to conventional GFP-like red-shifted fluorescent proteins, iRFP670 and iRFP720 demonstrate stronger photoacoustic signals at longer wavelengths, and can be spectrally resolved from each other and hemoglobin. We simultaneously visualized two differently labeled tumors, one with iRFP670 and the other with iRFP720, as well as blood vessels. We acquired images of a mouse as 2D sections of a whole animal, and as localized 3D volumetric images with high contrast and sub-millimeter resolution at depths up to 8 mm. Our results suggest iRFPs are genetically-encoded probes of choice for simultaneous photoacoustic imaging of several tissues or processes in vivo.

  20. A laboratory exercise for visible gel filtration chromatography using fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenqiang; Cao, Yibin; Xu, Lishan; Gong, Jufang; Sun, Meihao

    2015-01-01

    Gel filtration chromatography (GFC) separates molecules according to size and is one of the most widely used methods for protein purification. Here, red fluorescent protein (RFP), green fluorescent protein (GFP), yellow fluorescent protein (YFP), cyan fluorescent protein (CFP), and/or their fusion proteins were prokaryotically expressed, purified, and used in a laboratory exercise to intuitively demonstrate GFC. Different bands, corresponding to RFP, RFP-CFP (RC), YFP-RFP-YFP (YRY), and pyruvate kinase II-GFP (PKG) were well separated on a Superdex 200 column from a 0.5-mL sample. Increasing the sample volume and changing the chromatographic resin to Sephadex G-100 resulted in lower resolution separation. Students enjoyed identifying combinations of colored proteins and found this exercise helpful for understanding the factors that affect GFC resolution. PMID:25400007

  1. A fluorescent reporter for mapping cellular protein-protein interactions in time and space

    PubMed Central

    Moreno, Daniel; Neller, Joachim; Kestler, Hans A; Kraus, Johann; Dünkler, Alexander; Johnsson, Nils

    2013-01-01

    We introduce a fluorescent reporter for monitoring protein–protein interactions in living cells. The method is based on the Split-Ubiquitin method and uses the ratio of two auto-fluorescent reporter proteins as signal for interaction (SPLIFF). The mating of two haploid yeast cells initiates the analysis and the interactions are followed online by two-channel time-lapse microscopy of the diploid cells during their first cell cycle. Using this approach we could with high spatio-temporal resolution visualize the differences between the interactions of the microtubule binding protein Stu2p with two of its binding partners, monitor the transient association of a Ran-GTPase with its receptors at the nuclear pore, and distinguish between protein interactions at the polar cortical domain at different phases of polar growth. These examples further demonstrate that protein–protein interactions identified from large-scale screens can be effectively followed up by high-resolution single-cell analysis. PMID:23511205

  2. Monitoring and quantification of the protein partition during cytokinesis with fluorescent spectral imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ja-Yun; Lin, Yi-Ting; Wu, Tzong-Yuan; Hsu, I.-Jen

    2009-02-01

    Cytokinesis is a consecutive process during cell division. For systems biological studies, it is important to precisely monitor and quantify proteins in different cell stages and mitosis processes. However, the absolute quantities in living cells are usually difficult to quantify. Fluorescent protein tagged protein is one of the techniques that are usually applied to monitor biological behaviors and phenomena. In this study, an insect cell line, DPnE, which can stably express both green fluorescent protein (EGFP) and red fluorescent protein (DsRed) was established. This dual fluorescent cell line was chosen as a model system to monitor the protein partition during cytokinesis. A spectrum analysis system was established and integrated in an inverted microscope. The two-dimensional distribution of the full fluorescent spectra of the two fluorescent proteins was obtained in a time-lapse series. Furthermore, we also developed an algorithm to analyze the quantities of both fluorescent proteins in the daughter cells and parent cells during the process of cytokinesis, respectively. With this innovative optical system and algorithm, the proteins partition during cytokinesis can be monitored and quantified precisely.

  3. Automated Analysis of Fluorescence Microscopy Images to Identify Protein-Protein Interactions

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Venkatraman, S.; Doktycz, M. J.; Qi, H.; Morrell-Falvey, J. L.

    2006-01-01

    The identification of protein interactions is important for elucidating biological networks. One obstacle in comprehensive interaction studies is the analyses of large datasets, particularly those containing images. Development of an automated system to analyze an image-based protein interaction dataset is needed. Such an analysis system is described here, to automatically extract features from fluorescence microscopy images obtained from a bacterial protein interaction assay. These features are used to relay quantitative values that aid in the automated scoring of positive interactions. Experimental observations indicate that identifying at least 50% positive cells in an image is sufficient to detect a protein interaction.more » Based on this criterion, the automated system presents 100% accuracy in detecting positive interactions for a dataset of 16 images. Algorithms were implemented using MATLAB and the software developed is available on request from the authors.« less

  4. Quantitative determination of proteins based on strong fluorescence enhancement in curcumin-chitosan-proteins system.

    PubMed

    Wang, Feng; Huang, Wei; Jiang, Lingyan; Tang, Bo

    2012-03-01

    We found that the fluorescence intensity of curcumin (CU) can be highly enhanced by protein bovine serum albumin (BSA) and human serum albumin (HSA) in the presence of chitosan (CTS). Based on this finding, a new fluorimetric method to determine the concentration of protein was developed. Under optimized conditions, the enhanced intensities of fluorescence are quantitatively in proportion to the concentrations of protein in range of 0.007-100 μg·mL(-1) for BSA and 0.004-100 μg·mL(-1) for HSA at 426 nm excitation, and 0.007-100 μg·mL(-1) for BSA and 0.01-100 μg·mL(-1)for HSA at 280 nm excitation, while corresponding qualitative detection limits (S/N = 3) can lower to 3.96, 2.46, 4.56, 9.20 ng·mL(-1), respectively. The method has been successfully used for the determination of HSA in real samples. Based on resonance light scattering and UV-visible absorption spectroscopic analysis, mechanism studies suggested that the highly enhanced fluorescence of CU was resulted from synergic effects of favorable hydrophobic microenvironment provided by BSA and CTS and efficient intermolecular energy transfer between BSA and CU. Protein BSA may bind to CTS through hydrogen bonds, which causes the protein conformation to convert from β-fold to α-helix. CU can combine with the BSA-CTS complex through its center carbonyl carbon, and CTS plays a key role in promoting the energy transfer process by shortening the distance between BSA and CU. PMID:22271351

  5. A tunable and reversible platform for the intracellular formation of genetically engineered protein microdomains.

    PubMed

    Pastuszka, Martha K; Janib, Siti M; Weitzhandler, Isaac; Okamoto, Curtis T; Hamm-Alvarez, Sarah; Mackay, J Andrew

    2012-11-12

    From mitochondria to the nuclear envelope, the controlled assembly of micro- and nanostructures is essential for life; however, the level at which we can deliberately engineer the assembly of microstructures within intracellular environments remains primitive. To overcome this obstacle, we present a platform to reversibly assemble genetically engineered protein microdomains (GEPMs) on the time scale of minutes within living cells. Biologically inspired from the human protein tropoelastin, these protein polymers form a secondary aqueous phase above a tunable transition temperature. This assembly process is easily manipulated to occur at or near physiological temperature by adjusting molecular weight and hydrophobicity. We fused protein polymers to green fluorescent protein (GFP) to visualize their behavior within the cytoplasm. While soluble, these polymers have a similar intracellular diffusion constant as cytosolic proteins at 7.4 μm(2)/s; however, above their phase transition temperature, the proteins form distinct microdomains (0.1-2 μm) with a reduced diffusion coefficient of 1.1 μm(2)/s. Microdomain assembly and disassembly are both rapid processes with half-lives of 3.8 and 1.0 min, respectively. Via selection of the protein polymer, the assembly temperature is tunable between 20 and 40 °C. This approach may be useful to control intracellular formation of genetically engineered proteins and protein complexes into concentrated microdomains. PMID:23088632

  6. A Bright and Fast Red Fluorescent Protein Voltage Indicator That Reports Neuronal Activity in Organotypic Brain Slices

    PubMed Central

    Abdelfattah, Ahmed S.; Farhi, Samouil L.; Zhao, Yongxin; Brinks, Daan; Zou, Peng; Ruangkittisakul, Araya; Platisa, Jelena; Pieribone, Vincent A.; Ballanyi, Klaus; Cohen, Adam E.

    2016-01-01

    Optical imaging of voltage indicators based on green fluorescent proteins (FPs) or archaerhodopsin has emerged as a powerful approach for detecting the activity of many individual neurons with high spatial and temporal resolution. Relative to green FP-based voltage indicators, a bright red-shifted FP-based voltage indicator has the intrinsic advantages of lower phototoxicity, lower autofluorescent background, and compatibility with blue-light-excitable channelrhodopsins. Here, we report a bright red fluorescent voltage indicator (fluorescent indicator for voltage imaging red; FlicR1) with properties that are comparable to the best available green indicators. To develop FlicR1, we used directed protein evolution and rational engineering to screen libraries of thousands of variants. FlicR1 faithfully reports single action potentials (∼3% ΔF/F) and tracks electrically driven voltage oscillations at 100 Hz in dissociated Sprague Dawley rat hippocampal neurons in single trial recordings. Furthermore, FlicR1 can be easily imaged with wide-field fluorescence microscopy. We demonstrate that FlicR1 can be used in conjunction with a blue-shifted channelrhodopsin for all-optical electrophysiology, although blue light photoactivation of the FlicR1 chromophore presents a challenge for applications that require spatially overlapping yellow and blue excitation. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Fluorescent-protein-based voltage indicators enable imaging of the electrical activity of many genetically targeted neurons with high spatial and temporal resolution. Here, we describe the engineering of a bright red fluorescent protein-based voltage indicator designated as FlicR1 (fluorescent indicator for voltage imaging red). FlicR1 has sufficient speed and sensitivity to report single action potentials and voltage fluctuations at frequencies up to 100 Hz in single-trial recordings with wide-field microscopy. Because it is excitable with yellow light, FlicR1 can be used in conjunction with blue

  7. Engineering of complex protein sialylation in plants.

    PubMed

    Kallolimath, Somanath; Castilho, Alexandra; Strasser, Richard; Grünwald-Gruber, Clemens; Altmann, Friedrich; Strubl, Sebastian; Galuska, Christina Elisabeth; Zlatina, Kristina; Galuska, Sebastian Peter; Werner, Stefan; Thiesler, Hauke; Werneburg, Sebastian; Hildebrandt, Herbert; Gerardy-Schahn, Rita; Steinkellner, Herta

    2016-08-23

    Sialic acids (Sias) are abundant terminal modifications of protein-linked glycans. A unique feature of Sia, compared with other monosaccharides, is the formation of linear homo-polymers, with its most complex form polysialic acid (polySia). Sia and polySia mediate diverse biological functions and have great potential for therapeutic use. However, technological hurdles in producing defined protein sialylation due to the enormous structural diversity render their precise investigation a challenge. Here, we describe a plant-based expression platform that enables the controlled in vivo synthesis of sialylated structures with different interlinkages and degree of polymerization (DP). The approach relies on a combination of stably transformed plants with transient expression modules. By the introduction of multigene vectors carrying the human sialylation pathway into glycosylation-destructed mutants, transgenic plants that sialylate glycoproteins in α2,6- or α2,3-linkage were generated. Moreover, by the transient coexpression of human α2,8-polysialyltransferases, polySia structures with a DP >40 were synthesized in these plants. Importantly, plant-derived polySia are functionally active, as demonstrated by a cell-based cytotoxicity assay and inhibition of microglia activation. This pathway engineering approach enables experimental investigations of defined sialylation and facilitates a rational design of glycan structures with optimized biotechnological functions. PMID:27444013

  8. The Genetic Engineering of Motor Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartz, Rachael M.

    Molecular motors are a remarkable feature within living organisms that are responsible for directional mechanical motion, which is driven by adenosine triphosphate (ATP) hydrolysis. Actin-binding molecular motors are of specific interest in the field of nanotechnology as filamentous actin is capable of carrying cargo, such as quantum dots, while it is translocated along a motor coated surface. The binding regions of motor proteins, which are known to interact with actin, such as Myosin, have been thoroughly examined and identified. Rapid genetic engineering of the ATP-hydrolyzing enzyme, adenosine kinase, to incorporate these binding regions is possible through the use of site- directed mutagenesis. The sequences, which were mutated into the ADK wt gene, were incorporated in an unstructured loop region. During the phosphate transfer, the mutants switch between open and closed conformational states. The binding affinity of the sequences to the actin is altered during this conformational switch, thus causing the motor to move along actin filament. The ADK mutants and their interaction with filamentous actin was monitored by an in vitro motility assay. Two different mutants of ADK were found to have retained enzymatic functionality after the mutagenesis as well as function as actin-based motor proteins.

  9. Engineering of complex protein sialylation in plants

    PubMed Central

    Kallolimath, Somanath; Castilho, Alexandra; Strasser, Richard; Grünwald-Gruber, Clemens; Altmann, Friedrich; Strubl, Sebastian; Galuska, Christina Elisabeth; Zlatina, Kristina; Galuska, Sebastian Peter; Werner, Stefan; Thiesler, Hauke; Werneburg, Sebastian; Hildebrandt, Herbert; Gerardy-Schahn, Rita; Steinkellner, Herta

    2016-01-01

    Sialic acids (Sias) are abundant terminal modifications of protein-linked glycans. A unique feature of Sia, compared with other monosaccharides, is the formation of linear homo-polymers, with its most complex form polysialic acid (polySia). Sia and polySia mediate diverse biological functions and have great potential for therapeutic use. However, technological hurdles in producing defined protein sialylation due to the enormous structural diversity render their precise investigation a challenge. Here, we describe a plant-based expression platform that enables the controlled in vivo synthesis of sialylated structures with different interlinkages and degree of polymerization (DP). The approach relies on a combination of stably transformed plants with transient expression modules. By the introduction of multigene vectors carrying the human sialylation pathway into glycosylation-destructed mutants, transgenic plants that sialylate glycoproteins in α2,6- or α2,3-linkage were generated. Moreover, by the transient coexpression of human α2,8-polysialyltransferases, polySia structures with a DP >40 were synthesized in these plants. Importantly, plant-derived polySia are functionally active, as demonstrated by a cell-based cytotoxicity assay and inhibition of microglia activation. This pathway engineering approach enables experimental investigations of defined sialylation and facilitates a rational design of glycan structures with optimized biotechnological functions. PMID:27444013

  10. Engineering a ribozyme cleavage-induced split fluorescent aptamer complementation assay

    PubMed Central

    Ausländer, Simon; Fuchs, David; Hürlemann, Samuel; Ausländer, David; Fussenegger, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Hammerhead ribozymes are self-cleaving RNA molecules capable of regulating gene expression in living cells. Their cleavage performance is strongly influenced by intra-molecular loop–loop interactions, a feature not readily accessible through modern prediction algorithms. Ribozyme engineering and efficient implementation of ribozyme-based genetic switches requires detailed knowledge of individual self-cleavage performances. By rational design, we devised fluorescent aptamer-ribozyme RNA architectures that allow for the real-time measurement of ribozyme self-cleavage activity in vitro. The engineered nucleic acid molecules implement a split Spinach aptamer sequence that is made accessible for strand displacement upon ribozyme self-cleavage, thereby complementing the fluorescent Spinach aptamer. This fully RNA-based ribozyme performance assay correlates ribozyme cleavage activity with Spinach fluorescence to provide a rapid and straightforward technology for the validation of loop–loop interactions in hammerhead ribozymes. PMID:26939886

  11. Reproducibility of Fluorescent Expression from Engineered Biological Constructs in E. coli

    PubMed Central

    Beal, Jacob; Haddock-Angelli, Traci; Gershater, Markus; de Mora, Kim; Lizarazo, Meagan; Hollenhorst, Jim; Rettberg, Randy

    2016-01-01

    We present results of the first large-scale interlaboratory study carried out in synthetic biology, as part of the 2014 and 2015 International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competitions. Participants at 88 institutions around the world measured fluorescence from three engineered constitutive constructs in E. coli. Few participants were able to measure absolute fluorescence, so data was analyzed in terms of ratios. Precision was strongly related to fluorescent strength, ranging from 1.54-fold standard deviation for the ratio between strong promoters to 5.75-fold for the ratio between the strongest and weakest promoter, and while host strain did not affect expression ratios, choice of instrument did. This result shows that high quantitative precision and reproducibility of results is possible, while at the same time indicating areas needing improved laboratory practices. PMID:26937966

  12. Reproducibility of Fluorescent Expression from Engineered Biological Constructs in E. coli.

    PubMed

    Beal, Jacob; Haddock-Angelli, Traci; Gershater, Markus; de Mora, Kim; Lizarazo, Meagan; Hollenhorst, Jim; Rettberg, Randy

    2016-01-01

    We present results of the first large-scale interlaboratory study carried out in synthetic biology, as part of the 2014 and 2015 International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competitions. Participants at 88 institutions around the world measured fluorescence from three engineered constitutive constructs in E. coli. Few participants were able to measure absolute fluorescence, so data was analyzed in terms of ratios. Precision was strongly related to fluorescent strength, ranging from 1.54-fold standard deviation for the ratio between strong promoters to 5.75-fold for the ratio between the strongest and weakest promoter, and while host strain did not affect expression ratios, choice of instrument did. This result shows that high quantitative precision and reproducibility of results is possible, while at the same time indicating areas needing improved laboratory practices. PMID:26937966

  13. Engineering a ribozyme cleavage-induced split fluorescent aptamer complementation assay.

    PubMed

    Ausländer, Simon; Fuchs, David; Hürlemann, Samuel; Ausländer, David; Fussenegger, Martin

    2016-06-01

    Hammerhead ribozymes are self-cleaving RNA molecules capable of regulating gene expression in living cells. Their cleavage performance is strongly influenced by intra-molecular loop-loop interactions, a feature not readily accessible through modern prediction algorithms. Ribozyme engineering and efficient implementation of ribozyme-based genetic switches requires detailed knowledge of individual self-cleavage performances. By rational design, we devised fluorescent aptamer-ribozyme RNA architectures that allow for the real-time measurement of ribozyme self-cleavage activity in vitro The engineered nucleic acid molecules implement a split Spinach aptamer sequence that is made accessible for strand displacement upon ribozyme self-cleavage, thereby complementing the fluorescent Spinach aptamer. This fully RNA-based ribozyme performance assay correlates ribozyme cleavage activity with Spinach fluorescence to provide a rapid and straightforward technology for the validation of loop-loop interactions in hammerhead ribozymes. PMID:26939886

  14. Green Fluorescent Protein as a Model for Protein Crystal Growth Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Agena, Sabine; Smith, Lori; Karr, Laurel; Pusey, Marc

    1998-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) from jellyfish Aequorea Victoria has become a popular marker for e.g. mutagenesis work. Its fluorescent property, which originates from a chromophore located in the center of the molecule, makes it widely applicable as a research too]. GFP clones have been produced with a variety of spectral properties, such as blue and yellow emitting species. The protein is a single chain of molecular weight 27 kDa and its structure has been determined at 1.9 Angstrom resolution. The combination of GFP's fluorescent property, the knowledge of its several crystallization conditions, and its increasing use in biophysical and biochemical studies, all led us to consider it as a model material for macromolecular crystal growth studies. Initial preparations of GFP were from E.coli with yields of approximately 5 mg/L of culture media. Current yields are now in the 50 - 120 mg/L range, and we hope to further increase this by expression of the GFP gene in the Pichia system. The results of these efforts and of preliminary crystal growth studies will be presented.

  15. Inference of protein diffusion probed via fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsekouras, Konstantinos

    2015-03-01

    Fluctuations are an inherent part of single molecule or few particle biophysical data sets. Traditionally, ``noise'' fluctuations have been viewed as a nuisance, to be eliminated or minimized. Here we look on how statistical inference methods - that take explicit advantage of fluctuations - have allowed us to draw an unexpected picture of single molecule diffusional dynamics. Our focus is on the diffusion of proteins probed using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS). First, we discuss how - in collaboration with the Bustamante and Marqusee labs at UC Berkeley - we determined using FCS data that individual enzymes are perturbed by self-generated catalytic heat (Riedel et al, Nature, 2014). Using the tools of inference, we found how distributions of enzyme diffusion coefficients shift in the presence of substrate revealing that enzymes performing highly exothermic reactions dissipate heat by transiently accelerating their center of mass following a catalytic reaction. Next, when molecules diffuse in the cell nucleus they often appear to diffuse anomalously. We analyze FCS data - in collaboration with Rich Day at the IU Med School - to propose a simple model for transcription factor binding-unbinding in the nucleus to show that it may give rise to apparent anomalous diffusion. Here inference methods extract entire binding affinity distributions for the diffusing transcription factors, allowing us to precisely characterize their interactions with different components of the nuclear environment. From this analysis, we draw key mechanistic insight that goes beyond what is possible by simply fitting data to ``anomalous diffusion'' models.

  16. Live Imaging Fluorescent Proteins in Early Mouse Embryos

    PubMed Central

    Xenopoulos, Panagiotis; Nowotschin, Sonja; Hadjantonakis, Anna-Katerina

    2016-01-01

    Mouse embryonic development comprises highly dynamic and coordinated events that drive key cell lineage specification and morphogenetic events. These processes involve cellular behaviors including proliferation, migration, apoptosis, and differentiation, each of which is regulated both spatially and temporally. Live imaging of developing embryos provides an essential tool to investigate these coordinated processes in three-dimensional space over time. For this purpose, the development and application of genetically encoded fluorescent protein (FP) reporters has accelerated over the past decade allowing for the high-resolution visualization of developmental progression. Ongoing efforts are aimed at generating improved reporters, where spectrally distinct as well as novel FPs whose optical properties can be photomodulated, are exploited for live imaging of mouse embryos. Moreover, subcellular tags in combination with using FPs allow for the visualization of multiple subcellular characteristics, such as cell position and cell morphology, in living embryos. Here, we review recent advances in the application of FPs for live imaging in the early mouse embryo, as well as some of the methods used for ex utero embryo development that facilitate on-stage time-lapse specimen visualization. PMID:22341233

  17. Evolutionary mechanism as a template for protein engineering.

    PubMed

    Eisenbeis, Simone; Höcker, Birte

    2010-10-01

    The goal of a protein engineer is to adjust a protein to a specified new function. This is exactly what natural evolution has achieved many times. By studying evolutionary mechanisms, we can learn about ways to use the adaptability of proteins and to build new proteins. In fact, many techniques used in engineering are successfully mimicking evolutionary processes. We introduce the fundamental evolutionary mechanisms, take a closer look at duplication and fusion, recombination, and circular permutation and discuss their influence on protein engineering. Some important techniques are presented and illustrated with examples. PMID:20862721

  18. Illuminating the origins of spectral properties of green fluorescent proteins via proteochemometric and molecular modeling.

    PubMed

    Nantasenamat, Chanin; Simeon, Saw; Owasirikul, Wiwat; Songtawee, Napat; Lapins, Maris; Prachayasittikul, Virapong; Wikberg, Jarl E S

    2014-10-15

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) has immense utility in biomedical imaging owing to its autofluorescent nature. In efforts to broaden the spectral diversity of GFP, there have been several reports of engineered mutants via rational design and random mutagenesis. Understanding the origins of spectral properties of GFP could be achieved by means of investigating its structure-activity relationship. The first quantitative structure-property relationship study for modeling the spectral properties, particularly the excitation and emission maximas, of GFP was previously proposed by us some years ago in which quantum chemical descriptors were used for model development. However, such simplified model does not consider possible effects that neighboring amino acids have on the conjugated π-system of GFP chromophore. This study describes the development of a unified proteochemometric model in which the GFP chromophore and amino acids in its vicinity are both considered in the same model. The predictive performance of the model was verified by internal and external validation as well as Y-scrambling. Our strategy provides a general solution for elucidating the contribution that specific ligand and protein descriptors have on the investigated spectral property, which may be useful in engineering novel GFP variants with desired characteristics. PMID:25117954

  19. Protein engineering for metabolic engineering: Current and next-generation tools

    SciTech Connect

    Marcheschi, RJ; Gronenberg, LS; Liao, JC

    2013-04-16

    Protein engineering in the context of metabolic engineering is increasingly important to the field of industrial biotechnology. As the demand for biologically produced food, fuels, chemicals, food additives, and pharmaceuticals continues to grow, the ability to design and modify proteins to accomplish new functions will be required to meet the high productivity demands for the metabolism of engineered organisms. We review advances in selecting, modeling, and engineering proteins to improve or alter their activity. Some of the methods have only recently been developed for general use and are just beginning to find greater application in the metabolic engineering community. We also discuss methods of generating random and targeted diversity in proteins to generate mutant libraries for analysis. Recent uses of these techniques to alter cofactor use; produce non-natural amino acids, alcohols, and carboxylic acids; and alter organism phenotypes are presented and discussed as examples of the successful engineering of proteins for metabolic engineering purposes.

  20. Protein engineering for metabolic engineering: current and next-generation tools

    PubMed Central

    Marcheschi, Ryan J.; Gronenberg, Luisa S.; Liao, James C.

    2014-01-01

    Protein engineering in the context of metabolic engineering is increasingly important to the field of industrial biotechnology. As the demand for biologically-produced food, fuels, chemicals, food additives, and pharmaceuticals continues to grow, the ability to design and modify proteins to accomplish new functions will be required to meet the high productivity demands for the metabolism of engineered organisms. This article reviews advances of selecting, modeling, and engineering proteins to improve or alter their activity. Some of the methods have only recently been developed for general use and are just beginning to find greater application in the metabolic engineering community. We also discuss methods of generating random and targeted diversity in proteins to generate mutant libraries for analysis. Recent uses of these techniques to alter cofactor use, produce non-natural amino acids, alcohols, and carboxylic acids, and alter organism phenotypes are presented and discussed as examples of the successful engineering of proteins for metabolic engineering purposes. PMID:23589443

  1. Rewiring Multidomain Protein Switches: Transforming a Fluorescent Zn(2+) Sensor into a Light-Responsive Zn(2+) Binding Protein.

    PubMed

    Aper, Stijn J A; Merkx, Maarten

    2016-07-15

    Protein-based sensors and switches provide attractive tools for the real-time monitoring and control of molecular processes in complex biological environments. Fluorescent sensor proteins have been developed for a wide variety of small molecules, but the construction of genetically encoded light-responsive ligand binding proteins remains mostly unexplored. Here we present a generic approach to reengineer a previously developed FRET-based Zn(2+) sensor into a light-activatable Zn(2+) binding protein using a design strategy based on mutually exclusive domain interactions. These so-called VividZn proteins consist of two light-responsive Vivid domains that homodimerize upon illumination with blue light, thus preventing the binding of Zn(2+) between two Zn(2+) binding domains, Atox1 and WD4. Following optimization of the linker between WD4 and the N-terminus of one of the Vivid domains, VividZn variants were obtained that show a 9- to 55-fold decrease in Zn(2+) affinity upon illumination, which is fully reversible following dark adaptation. The Zn(2+) affinities of the switch could be rationally tuned between 1 pM and 2 nM by systematic variation of linker length and mutation of one of the Zn(2+) binding residues. Similarly, introduction of mutations in the Vivid domains allowed tuning of the switching kinetics between 10 min and 7 h. Low expression levels in mammalian cells precluded the demonstration of light-induced perturbation of cytosolic Zn(2+) levels. Nonetheless, our results firmly establish the use of intramolecular Vivid dimerization as an attractive light-sensitive input module to rationally engineer light-responsive protein switches based on mutually exclusive domain interactions. PMID:27031076

  2. Engineering tandem single-chain Fv as cell surface reporters with enhanced properties of fluorescence detection.

    PubMed

    Gallo, Eugenio; Snyder, Avin C; Jarvik, Jonathan W

    2015-10-01

    A recently described fluorescence biosensor platform utilizes single-chain Fv (scFvs) that selectively bind and activate fluorogen molecules. In this report we investigated the display of tandem scFv biosensors at the surface of mammalian cells with the aim of advancing current fluorescence detection strategies. We initially screened different peptide linkers to separate each scFv unit, and discovered that tandem proteins joined by either flexible or α-helical linkers properly fold and display at the surface of mammalian cells. Accordingly, we performed a combinatorial scFv-dimer study and identified that fluorescence activation correlated with the cellular location (membrane distal versus proximal) and selections of the different scFvs. Furthermore, in vitro measurements showed that the stability of each scFv monomer unit influenced the folding and cell surface activities of tandem scFvs. Additionally, we investigated the absence or poor signals from some scFv-dimer combinations and discovered that intramolecular and intermolecular scFv chain mispairings led to protein misfolding and/or secretory-pathway-mediated degradation. Furthermore, when tandem scFvs were utilized as fluorescence reporter tags with surface receptors, the biosensor unit and target protein showed independent activities. Thus, the live cell application of tandem scFvs permitted advanced detection of target proteins via fluorescence signal amplification, Förster resonance energy transfer resulting in the increase of Stokes shift and multi-color vesicular traffic of surface receptors. PMID:25843939

  3. Development of Cysteine-Free Fluorescent Proteins for the Oxidative Environment

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Takahisa; Arai, Seisuke; Takeuchi, Mayumi; Sakurai, Chiye; Ebana, Hideaki; Higashi, Tsunehito; Hashimoto, Hitoshi; Hatsuzawa, Kiyotaka; Wada, Ikuo

    2012-01-01

    Molecular imaging employing fluorescent proteins has been widely used to highlight specific reactions or processes in various fields of the life sciences. Despite extensive improvements of the fluorescent tag, this technology is still limited in the study of molecular events in the extracellular milieu. This is partly due to the presence of cysteine in the fluorescent proteins. These proteins almost cotranslationally form disulfide bonded oligomers when expressed in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Although single molecule photobleaching analysis showed that these oligomers were not fluorescent, the fluorescent monomer form often showed aberrant behavior in folding and motion, particularly when fused to cysteine-containing cargo. Therefore we investigated whether it was possible to eliminate the cysteine without losing the brightness. By site-saturated mutagenesis, we found that the cysteine residues in fluorescent proteins could be replaced with specific alternatives while still retaining their brightness. cf(cysteine-free)SGFP2 showed significantly reduced restriction of free diffusion in the ER and marked improvement of maturation when fused to the prion protein. We further applied this approach to TagRFP family proteins and found a set of mutations that obtains the same level of brightness as the cysteine-containing proteins. The approach used in this study to generate new cysteine-free fluorescent tags should expand the application of molecular imaging to the extracellular milieu and facilitate its usage in medicine and biotechnology. PMID:22649538

  4. Development of cysteine-free fluorescent proteins for the oxidative environment.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Takahisa; Arai, Seisuke; Takeuchi, Mayumi; Sakurai, Chiye; Ebana, Hideaki; Higashi, Tsunehito; Hashimoto, Hitoshi; Hatsuzawa, Kiyotaka; Wada, Ikuo

    2012-01-01

    Molecular imaging employing fluorescent proteins has been widely used to highlight specific reactions or processes in various fields of the life sciences. Despite extensive improvements of the fluorescent tag, this technology is still limited in the study of molecular events in the extracellular milieu. This is partly due to the presence of cysteine in the fluorescent proteins. These proteins almost cotranslationally form disulfide bonded oligomers when expressed in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Although single molecule photobleaching analysis showed that these oligomers were not fluorescent, the fluorescent monomer form often showed aberrant behavior in folding and motion, particularly when fused to cysteine-containing cargo. Therefore we investigated whether it was possible to eliminate the cysteine without losing the brightness. By site-saturated mutagenesis, we found that the cysteine residues in fluorescent proteins could be replaced with specific alternatives while still retaining their brightness. cf(cysteine-free)SGFP2 showed significantly reduced restriction of free diffusion in the ER and marked improvement of maturation when fused to the prion protein. We further applied this approach to TagRFP family proteins and found a set of mutations that obtains the same level of brightness as the cysteine-containing proteins. The approach used in this study to generate new cysteine-free fluorescent tags should expand the application of molecular imaging to the extracellular milieu and facilitate its usage in medicine and biotechnology. PMID:22649538

  5. Synthesis and characterization of novel 2, 2'-bipyrimidine fluorescent derivative for protein binding

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Fluorescent dyes with biocompatible functional group and good fluorescence behavior are used as biosensor for monitoring different biological processes as well as detection of protein assay. All reported fluorophore used as sensors are having high selectivity and sensitivity but till there is more demand to synthesized new fluorophore which have improved fluorescence properties and good biocompatibility. Results Novel 4, 4'-(1, 1'-(5-(2-methoxyphenoxy)-[2, 2'-bipyrimidine]-4, 6-diyl)bis(1H-pyrazol-3, 1-diyl)) dianiline fluorescent dye was synthesized by multistep synthesis from 2-phenylacetonitrile, 2-chloropyrimidine and 2-methoxyphenol. This dye has absorption at 379 nm with intense single emission at 497 nm having fairly good quantum yield (0.375) and Stokes shift. The intermediates and dye were characterized by FT-IR, 1H NMR, 13C NMR and Mass spectral analysis. The pyrazole bipyrimidine based fluorescent dye possessing two amino groups suitable for binding with protein is reported. Its utility as a biocompatible conjugate was explained by conjugation with bovine serum albumin. The method is based on direct fluorescence detection of fluorophore-labelled protein before and after conjugation. Purified fluorescent conjugate was subsequently analyzed by fluorimetry. The analysis showed that the tested conjugation reaction yielded fluorescent conjugates of the dye through carbodiimide chemistry. Conclusion In summery synthesized fluorophore pyrazole-bipyrimidine has very good interaction towards protein bovine serum albumin and it acts as good candidate for protein assay. PMID:22067202

  6. Protein dynamics control proton transfer from bulk solvent to protein interior: A case study with a green fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Saxena, Anoop M.; Udgaonkar, Jayant B.; Krishnamoorthy, Guruswamy

    2005-01-01

    The kinetics of proton transfer in Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) have been studied as a model system for characterizing the correlation between dynamics and function of proteins in general. The kinetics in EGFP (a variant of GFP) were monitored by using a laser-induced pH jump method. The pH was jumped from 8 to 5 by nanosecond flash photolysis of the “caged proton,” o-nitrobenzaldehyde, and subsequent proton transfer was monitored by following the decrease in fluorescence intensity. The modulation of proton transfer kinetics by external perturbants such as viscosity, pH, and subdenaturing concentrations of GdnHCl as well as of salts was studied. The rate of proton transfer was inversely proportional to solvent viscosity, suggesting that the rate-limiting step is the transfer of protons through the protein matrix. The rate is accelerated at lower pH values, and measurements of the fluorescence properties of tryptophan 57 suggest that the enhancement in rate is associated with an enhancement in protein dynamics. The rate of proton transfer is nearly independent of temperature, unlike the rate of the reverse process. When the stability of the protein was either decreased or increased by the addition of co-solutes, including the salts KCl, KNO3, and K2SO4, a significant decrease in the rate of proton transfer was observed in all cases. The lack of correlation between the rate of proton transfer and the stability of the protein suggests that the structure is tuned to ensure maximum efficiency of the dynamics that control the proton transfer function of the protein. PMID:15937281

  7. Human alpha-fetal protein immunoassay using fluorescence suppression with fluorescent-bead/antibody conjugate and enzymatic reaction.

    PubMed

    Ahn, Junhyoung; Shin, Yong-Beom; Lee, JaeJong; Kim, Min-Gon

    2015-09-15

    The aim of the study was to develop a simple and rapid immunoassay using fluorescent microbeads and enzyme-substrate reactions to measure alpha-fetal protein (AFP) concentrations. We demonstrated the functionality of the fluorescent immunosensor using antibody-conjugated fluorescent latex beads (AB-FLBs) and horseradish peroxidase (HRP) to catalyze a reaction, where the products would precipitate and suppress the fluorescence of AB-FLBs. First, the AB-FLBs were incubated with antigen, biotinylated antibodies (bABs), and streptavidin-HRP (SAv-HRP) to form a sandwich-type immunoreaction. The mixture was then filtered through a membrane to concentrate the beads on a small area. After washing to remove unbound bABs and SAv-HRP, a chromogenic HRP substrate and H2O2 were added to form precipitates on the FLB surface. The suppression of the fluorescence was measured with a fluorescent image analyzer system. Under optimized conditions, AFP could be measured at concentrations as low as 1 pg mL(-1) with a dynamic range up to 100 ng mL(-1). PMID:25897880

  8. Attenuation-Based Dual-Fluorescent-Protein Reporter for Screening Translation Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Osterman, Ilya A.; Prokhorova, Irina V.; Sysoev, Vasily O.; Boykova, Yulia V.; Efremenkova, Olga V.; Svetlov, Maxim S.; Kolb, Vyacheslav A.; Bogdanov, Alexey A.; Dontsova, Olga A.

    2012-01-01

    A reporter construct was created on the basis of the transcription attenuator region of the Escherichia coli tryptophan operon. Dual-fluorescent-protein genes for red fluorescent protein and cerulean fluorescent protein were used as a sensor and internal control of gene expression. The sequence of the attenuator was modified to avoid tryptophan sensitivity while preserving sensitivity to ribosome stalling. Antimicrobial compounds which cause translation arrest at the stage of elongation induce the reporter both in liquid culture and on an agar plate. This reporter could be used for high-throughput screening of translation inhibitors. PMID:22252829

  9. [Ph-Sensor Properties of a Fluorescent Protein from Dendronephthya sp].

    PubMed

    Pakhomov, A A; Chertkova, R V; Martynov, V I

    2015-01-01

    Genetically encoded biosensors based on fluorescent proteins are now widely applicable for monitoring pH changes in live cells. Here, we have shown that a fluorescent protein from Dendronephthya sp. (DendFP) exhibits a pronounced pH-sensitivity. Unlike most of known genetically encoded pH-sensors, fluorescence of the protein is not quenched upon medium acidification, but is shifting from the red to green spectral range. Therefore, quantitative measurements of intracellular pH are feasible by ratiometric comparison of emission intensities in the red and green spectral ranges, which makes DendFP advantageous compared with other genetically encoded pH-sensors. PMID:27125020

  10. In vivo imaging of the mammalian nervous system using fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Tucker, K L

    2001-01-01

    The recent development of fluorescent proteins has rapidly and radically altered the way cell biology is performed by allowing simple, non-invasive imaging of cellular processes in real time. The special properties of the nervous system, such as synaptic morphology, axonal/dendritic maturation, and neuronal migration are especially amenable to investigation using fluorescent proteins. This review focuses on the various genetic and viral vectors used to express fluorescent proteins in vivo and in slice culture, and the strengths and limitations associated with them. PMID:11219606

  11. Attenuation-based dual-fluorescent-protein reporter for screening translation inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Osterman, Ilya A; Prokhorova, Irina V; Sysoev, Vasily O; Boykova, Yulia V; Efremenkova, Olga V; Svetlov, Maxim S; Kolb, Vyacheslav A; Bogdanov, Alexey A; Sergiev, Petr V; Dontsova, Olga A

    2012-04-01

    A reporter construct was created on the basis of the transcription attenuator region of the Escherichia coli tryptophan operon. Dual-fluorescent-protein genes for red fluorescent protein and cerulean fluorescent protein were used as a sensor and internal control of gene expression. The sequence of the attenuator was modified to avoid tryptophan sensitivity while preserving sensitivity to ribosome stalling. Antimicrobial compounds which cause translation arrest at the stage of elongation induce the reporter both in liquid culture and on an agar plate. This reporter could be used for high-throughput screening of translation inhibitors. PMID:22252829

  12. [Monitoring the Redox States of Thioredoxin in Protein-Protein Interaction Using Intrinsic Fluorescence Probe].

    PubMed

    Wang, Pan; Guo, Ai-yu; Chang, Guan-xiao; Ran, Xia; Zhang, Yu; Guo, Li-jun

    2015-10-01

    The cellular redox states directly affect cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis, and the redox states changes is particularly important to the regulation of cell survival or death. Thioredoxin is a kind of oxidation regulatory protein which is widely exists in organisms, and the change of redox states is also an important process in redox regulation. In this work, we have used the site-directed mutagenesis of protein, SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis fluorescence spectroscopy and circular dichroism etc., to investigate redox states changes between TRX (E. coli) and glutathione peroxidase(GPX3) during their interaction. By observing the fluorescence spectra of TRX and its mutants, we have studied the protein interactions as well as the redox states switching between oxidation state TRX and the reduced state GPX3. The results demonstrate the presence of interactions and electron exchanges occurring between reduced GPX3 and oxidized TRX, which is of significance for revealing the physical and chemical mechanism of TRX in intracellular signal transduction. PMID:26904821

  13. Polymersomes prepared from thermoresponsive fluorescent protein-polymer bioconjugates: capture of and report on drug and protein payloads.

    PubMed

    Wong, Chin Ken; Laos, Alistair J; Soeriyadi, Alexander H; Wiedenmann, Jörg; Curmi, Paul M G; Gooding, J Justin; Marquis, Christopher P; Stenzel, Martina H; Thordarson, Pall

    2015-04-27

    Polymersomes provide a good platform for targeted drug delivery and the creation of complex (bio)catalytically active systems for research in synthetic biology. To realize these applications requires both spatial control over the encapsulation components in these polymersomes and a means to report where the components are in the polymersomes. To address these twin challenges, we synthesized the protein-polymer bioconjugate PNIPAM-b-amilFP497 composed of thermoresponsive poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM) and a green-fluorescent protein variant (amilFP497). Above 37 °C, this bioconjugate forms polymersomes that can (co-)encapsulate the fluorescent drug doxorubicin and the fluorescent light-harvesting protein phycoerythrin 545 (PE545). Using fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy and Förster resonance energy transfer (FLIM-FRET), we can distinguish the co-encapsulated PE545 protein inside the polymersome membrane while doxorubicin is found both in the polymersome core and membrane. PMID:25736460

  14. Noninvasive imaging in vivo with fluorescent proteins from centimeters to micrometers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Meng; Jiang, Ping; Al-Zaid, Manal; Hoffman, Robert M.

    2008-02-01

    Whole-body imaging with fluorescent proteins has been shown to be a powerful technology with many applications in small animals. Our laboratory pioneered in vivo imaging with fluorescent proteins (1) including noninvasive whole-body imaging (2). Whole-body imaging with fluorescent proteins depends in large part on the brightness of the protein. Brighter, red-shifted proteins can make whole-body imaging more sensitive due to reduced absorption by tissues and less scatter. Non-invasive imaging with fluorescent proteins has been shown to be able to quantitatively track tumor growth and metastasis, gene expression, angiogenesis, and bacterial infection (3) even at subcellular resolution depending on the position of the cells in the animal. Interference by skin autofluorescence is kept to a minimum with the use of proper filters. To noninvasively image cancer cell/stromal cell interaction in the tumor microenvironment and drug response at the cellular level in live animals in real time, we developed a new imageable three-color animal model. The model consists of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing mice transplanted with dual-color cancer cells labeled with GFP in the nucleus and red fluorescent protein (RFP) in the cytoplasm. Various in vivo phenomena of tumor-host interaction and cellular dynamics were imaged, including mitotic and apoptotic tumor cells, stromal cells interacting with the tumor cells, tumor vasculature, and tumor blood flow as well as drug response. This imageable technology should lead to many new insights of in vivo cancer cell biology.

  15. Structural basis for reversible photobleaching of a green fluorescent protein homologue

    PubMed Central

    Henderson, J. Nathan; Ai, Hui-wang; Campbell, Robert E.; Remington, S. James

    2007-01-01

    Fluorescent protein (FP) variants that can be reversibly converted between fluorescent and nonfluorescent states have proven to be a catalyst for innovation in the field of fluorescence microscopy. However, the structural basis of the process remains poorly understood. High-resolution structures of a FP derived from Clavularia in both the fluorescent and the light-induced nonfluorescent states reveal that the rapid and complete loss of fluorescence observed upon illumination with 450-nm light results from cis–trans isomerization of the chromophore. The photoinduced change in configuration from the well ordered cis isomer to the highly nonplanar and disordered trans isomer is accompanied by a dramatic rearrangement of internal side chains. Taken together, the structures provide an explanation for the loss of fluorescence upon illumination, the slow light-independent recovery, and the rapid light-induced recovery of fluorescence. The fundamental mechanism appears to be common to all of the photoactivatable and reversibly photoswitchable FPs reported to date. PMID:17420458

  16. Quantitative Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy Reveals a 1000-Fold Increase in Lifetime of Protein Functionality

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dianwen; Lans, Hannes; Vermeulen, Wim; Lenferink, Aufried; Otto, Cees

    2008-01-01

    We have investigated dilute protein solutions with fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) and have observed that a rapid loss of proteins occurs from solution. It is commonly assumed that such a loss is the result of protein adsorption to interfaces. A protocol was developed in which this mode of protein loss can be prevented. However, FCS on fluorescent protein (enhanced green fluorescent protein, mCherry, and mStrawberry) solutions enclosed by adsorption-protected interfaces still reveals a decrease of the fluorescent protein concentration, while the diffusion time is stable over long periods of time. We interpret this decay as a loss of protein functionality, probably caused by denaturation of the fluorescent proteins. We show that the typical lifetime of protein functionality in highly dilute, approximately single molecule per femtoliter solutions can be extended more than 1000-fold (typically from a few hours to >40 days) by adding compounds with surfactant behavior. No direct interactions between the surfactant and the fluorescent proteins were observed from the diffusion time measured by FCS. A critical surfactant concentration of more than 23 μM was required to achieve the desired protein stabilization for Triton X-100. The surfactant does not interfere with DNA-protein binding, because similar observations were made using DNA-cutting restriction enzymes. We associate the occurrence of denaturation of proteins with the activity of water at the water-protein interface, which was recently proposed in terms of the “water attack model”. Our observations suggest that soluble biomolecules can extend an influence over much larger distances than suggested by their actual volume. PMID:18586843

  17. Z-scan Fluorescence Profile Deconvolution of Cytosolic and Membrane-associated Protein Populations

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Elizabeth M.; Hennen, Jared; Chen, Yan; Mueller, Joachim D.

    2015-01-01

    This study introduces a technique that characterizes the spatial distribution of peripheral membrane proteins that associate reversibly with the plasma membrane. An axial scan through the cell generates a z-scan intensity profile of a fluorescently labeled peripheral membrane protein. This profile is analytically separated into membrane and cytoplasmic components by accounting for both the cell geometry and the point spread function. We experimentally validated the technique and characterized both the resolvability and stability of z-scan measurements. Further, using the cellular brightness of green fluorescent protein, we were able to convert the fluorescence intensities into concentrations at the membrane and in the cytoplasm. We applied the technique to study the translocation of the pleckstrin homology domain of phospholipase C-delta1 labeled with green fluorescent protein upon ionomycin treatment. Analysis of the z-scan fluorescence profiles revealed protein-specific cell height changes and allowed for comparison between the observed fluorescence changes and predictions based on the cellular surface area to volume ratio. The quantitative capability of z-scan fluorescence profile deconvolution offers opportunities for investigating peripheral membrane proteins in the living cell that were previously not accessible. PMID:25862080

  18. Spectral and structural comparison between bright and dim green fluorescent proteins in Amphioxus

    PubMed Central

    Bomati, Erin K.; Haley, Joy E.; Noel, Joseph P.; Deheyn, Dimitri D.

    2014-01-01

    The cephalochordate Amphioxus naturally co-expresses fluorescent proteins (FPs) with different brightness, which thus offers the rare opportunity to identify FP molecular feature/s that are associated with greater/lower intensity of fluorescence. Here, we describe the spectral and structural characteristics of green FP (bfloGFPa1) with perfect (100%) quantum efficiency yielding to unprecedentedly-high brightness, and compare them to those of co-expressed bfloGFPc1 showing extremely-dim brightness due to low (0.1%) quantum efficiency. This direct comparison of structure-function relationship indicated that in the bright bfloGFPa1, a Tyrosine (Tyr159) promotes a ring flipping of a Tryptophan (Trp157) that in turn allows a cis-trans transformation of a Proline (Pro55). Consequently, the FP chromophore is pushed up, which comes with a slight tilt and increased stability. FPs are continuously engineered for improved biochemical and/or photonic properties, and this study provides new insight to the challenge of establishing a clear mechanistic understanding between chromophore structural environment and brightness level. PMID:24968921

  19. Molecular Basis of Spectral Diversity in Near-Infrared Phytochrome-Based Fluorescent Proteins.

    PubMed

    Shcherbakova, Daria M; Baloban, Mikhail; Pletnev, Sergei; Malashkevich, Vladimir N; Xiao, Hui; Dauter, Zbigniew; Verkhusha, Vladislav V

    2015-11-19

    Near-infrared fluorescent proteins (NIR FPs) engineered from bacterial phytochromes (BphPs) are the probes of choice for deep-tissue imaging. Detection of several processes requires spectrally distinct NIR FPs. We developed an NIR FP, BphP1-FP, which has the most blue-shifted spectra and the highest fluorescence quantum yield among BphP-derived FPs. We found that these properties result from the binding of the biliverdin chromophore to a cysteine residue in the GAF domain, unlike natural BphPs and other BphP-based FPs. To elucidate the molecular basis of the spectral shift, we applied biochemical, structural and mass spectrometry analyses and revealed the formation of unique chromophore species. Mutagenesis of NIR FPs of different origins indicated that the mechanism of the spectral shift is general and can be used to design multicolor NIR FPs from other BphPs. We applied pairs of spectrally distinct point cysteine mutants to multicolor cell labeling and demonstrated that they perform well in model deep-tissue imaging. PMID:26590639

  20. Spectral and structural comparison between bright and dim green fluorescent proteins in Amphioxus.

    PubMed

    Bomati, Erin K; Haley, Joy E; Noel, Joseph P; Deheyn, Dimitri D

    2014-01-01

    The cephalochordate Amphioxus naturally co-expresses fluorescent proteins (FPs) with different brightness, which thus offers the rare opportunity to identify FP molecular feature/s that are associated with greater/lower intensity of fluorescence. Here, we describe the spectral and structural characteristics of green FP (bfloGFPa1) with perfect (100%) quantum efficiency yielding to unprecedentedly-high brightness, and compare them to those of co-expressed bfloGFPc1 showing extremely-dim brightness due to low (0.1%) quantum efficiency. This direct comparison of structure-function relationship indicated that in the bright bfloGFPa1, a Tyrosine (Tyr159) promotes a ring flipping of a Tryptophan (Trp157) that in turn allows a cis-trans transformation of a Proline (Pro55). Consequently, the FP chromophore is pushed up, which comes with a slight tilt and increased stability. FPs are continuously engineered for improved biochemical and/or photonic properties, and this study provides new insight to the challenge of establishing a clear mechanistic understanding between chromophore structural environment and brightness level. PMID:24968921

  1. Non-invasive intravital imaging of cellular differentiation with a bright red-excitable fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Chu, Jun; Haynes, Russell D; Corbel, Stéphane Y; Li, Pengpeng; González-González, Emilio; Burg, John S; Ataie, Niloufar J; Lam, Amy J; Cranfill, Paula J; Baird, Michelle A; Davidson, Michael W; Ng, Ho-Leung; Garcia, K Christopher; Contag, Christopher H; Shen, Kang; Blau, Helen M; Lin, Michael Z

    2014-01-01

    A method for non-invasive visualization of genetically labelled cells in animal disease models with micron-level resolution would greatly facilitate development of cell-based therapies. Imaging of fluorescent proteins (FPs) using red excitation light in the “optical window” above 600 nm is one potential method for visualizing implanted cells. However, previous efforts to engineer FPs with peak excitation beyond 600 nm have resulted in undesirable reductions in brightness. Here we report three new red-excitable monomeric FPs obtained by structure-guided mutagenesis of mNeptune, previously the brightest monomeric FP when excited beyond 600 nm. Two of these, mNeptune2 and mNeptune2.5, demonstrate improved maturation and brighter fluorescence, while the third, mCardinal, has a red-shifted excitation spectrum without reduction in brightness. We show that mCardinal can be used to non-invasively and longitudinally visualize the differentiation of myoblasts and stem cells into myocytes in living mice with high anatomical detail. PMID:24633408

  2. Structural basis for activity of highly efficient RNA mimics of green fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Warner, Katherine Deigan; Chen, Michael C.; Song, Wenjiao; Strack, Rita L.; Thorn, Andrea; Jaffrey, Samie R.; Ferré-D’Amaré, Adrian R.

    2014-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) and its derivatives revolutionized the study of proteins. Spinach is a recently reported in vitro evolved RNA mimic of GFP, which as genetically encoded fusions, makes possible live-cell, real-time imaging of biological RNAs, without resorting to large RNA-binding protein-GFP fusions. To elucidate the molecular basis of Spinach fluorescence, we have solved its co-crystal structure bound to its cognate exogenous chromophore, revealing that Spinach activates the small molecule by immobilizing it between a base triple, a G-quadruplex, and an unpaired guanine. Mutational and NMR analyses indicate that the G-quadruplex is essential for Spinach fluorescence, is also present in other fluorogenic RNAs, and may represent a general strategy for RNAs to induce fluorescence of chromophores. The structure has guided the design of a miniaturized 'Baby Spinach', and provides the foundation for structure-driven design and tuning of fluorescent RNAs. PMID:25026079

  3. Beta-Barrel Scaffold of Fluorescent Proteins: Folding, Stability and Role in Chromophore Formation

    PubMed Central

    Stepanenko, Olesya V.; Stepanenko, Olga V.; Kuznetsova, Irina M.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Turoverov, Konstantin K.

    2013-01-01

    This review focuses on the current view of the interaction between the β-barrel scaffold of fluorescent proteins and their unique chromophore located in the internal helix. The chromophore originates from the polypeptide chain and its properties are influenced by the surrounding protein matrix of the β-barrel. On the other hand, it appears that a chromophore tightens the β-barrel scaffold and plays a crucial role in its stability. Furthermore, the presence of a mature chromophore causes hysteresis of protein unfolding and refolding. We survey studies measuring protein unfolding and refolding using traditional methods as well as new approaches, such as mechanical unfolding and reassembly of truncated fluorescent proteins. We also analyze models of fluorescent protein unfolding and refolding obtained through different approaches, and compare the results of protein folding in vitro to co-translational folding of a newly synthesized polypeptide chain. PMID:23351712

  4. Two-Photon Fluorescence Anisotropy Imaging to Elucidate the Dynamics and the Stability of Immobilized Proteins.

    PubMed

    Orrego, Alejandro H; García, Carolina; Mancheño, José M; Guisán, Jose M; Lillo, M Pilar; López-Gallego, Fernando

    2016-01-28

    Time/spatial-resolved fluorescence determines anisotropy values of supported-fluorescent proteins through different immobilization chemistries, evidencing some of the molecular mechanisms that drive the stabilization of proteins at the interfaces with solid surfaces. Fluorescence anisotropy imaging provides a normalized protein mobility parameter that serves as a guide to study the effect of different immobilization parameters (length and flexibility of the spacer arm and multivalency of the protein-support interaction) on the final stability of the supported proteins. Proteins in a more constrained environment correspond to the most thermostable ones, as was shown by thermal inactivation studies. This work contributes to explain the experimental evidence found with conventional methods based on observable measurements; thus this advanced characterization technique provides reliable molecular information about the immobilized proteins with sub-micrometer spatial resolution. Such information has been very useful for fabricating highly stable heterogeneous biocatalysts with high interest in industrial developments. PMID:26716569

  5. Chemical synthesis of the precursor molecule of the Aequorea green fluorescent protein, subsequent folding, and development of fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Nishiuchi, Yuji; Inui, Tatsuya; Nishio, Hideki; Bódi, József; Kimura, Terutoshi; Tsuji, Frederick I.; Sakakibara, Shumpei

    1998-01-01

    The present paper describes the total chemical synthesis of the precursor molecule of the Aequorea green fluorescent protein (GFP). The molecule is made up of 238 amino acid residues in a single polypeptide chain and is nonfluorescent. To carry out the synthesis, a procedure, first described in 1981 for the synthesis of complex peptides, was used. The procedure is based on performing segment condensation reactions in solution while providing maximum protection to the segment. The effectiveness of the procedure has been demonstrated by the synthesis of various biologically active peptides and small proteins, such as human angiogenin, a 123-residue protein analogue of ribonuclease A, human midkine, a 121-residue protein, and pleiotrophin, a 136-residue protein analogue of midkine. The GFP precursor molecule was synthesized from 26 fully protected segments in solution, and the final 238-residue peptide was treated with anhydrous hydrogen fluoride to obtain the precursor molecule of GFP containing two Cys(acetamidomethyl) residues. After removal of the acetamidomethyl groups, the product was dissolved in 0.1 M Tris⋅HCl buffer (pH 8.0) in the presence of DTT. After several hours at room temperature, the solution began to emit a green fluorescence (λmax = 509 nm) under near-UV light. Both fluorescence excitation and fluorescence emission spectra were measured and were found to have the same shape and maxima as those reported for native GFP. The present results demonstrate the utility of the segment condensation procedure in synthesizing large protein molecules such as GFP. The result also provides evidence that the formation of the chromophore in GFP is not dependent on any external cofactor. PMID:9811837

  6. Fluorescence characteristics of the fuel tracers triethylamine and trimethylamine for the investigation of fuel distribution in internal combustion engines.

    PubMed

    Lind, Susanne; Aßmann, Simon; Zigan, Lars; Will, Stefan

    2016-03-01

    Laser-induced fluorescence based on fuel tracers like amines is a suitable measurement technique for mixing studies in internal combustion (IC) engines. Triethylamine has often been used in gasoline IC engines; however, no detailed fluorescence characterization for excitation at 263 or 266 nm is available. Trimethylamine (TMA) exhibits high potential as a gaseous fuel tracer but little information about TMA fluorescence is currently available. A picosecond laser source combined with a streak camera equipped with a spectrograph was used to determine the spectral fluorescence emission and fluorescence decay time of both tracers. The tracers were investigated at various temperatures and pressures in a calibration cell with nitrogen as bath gas. The results provide an in-depth understanding of the fluorescence characteristics of both tracers and allow assessment of their application to the investigation of fuel distribution in IC engines. PMID:26974612

  7. Two-photon microscopy of living cells by simultaneously exciting multiple endogenous fluorophores and fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Wei; Li, Dong; Qu, Jianan Y.

    2010-02-01

    Endogenous fluorophores, such as reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH), keratin, and tryptophan, have been used as contrast agents for imaging metabolism and morphology of living cells and tissues. Multilabeling which maps the distribution of different targets is an indispensable technique in many biomedical and biochemical studies. Therefore, two-photon excitation fluorescence (TPEF) microscopy of endogenous fluorophores combining with in vivo fluorescence labeling techniques such as genetically encoded fluorescent protein could be a powerful tool for imaging living cells and tissues. However, the challenge is that the excitation and emission wavelengths of these endogenous fluorophores and fluorescence labels are very different. A multi-color ultrafast source is required for the excitation of multiple fluorescence molecules. In this study, we developed a two-photon imaging system with excitations from the pump femtosecond laser and the selected Supercontinuum generated from a photonic crystal fiber (PCF). Multiple endogenous fluorophores and fluorescent proteins such as NADH, tryptophan, green fluorescent protein (GFP), and yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) were excited in their optimal wavelengths alternately or simultaneously. A time- and spectral-resolved detection system was used to record the TPEF signals. This detection technique separated the TPEF signals from multiple sources in time and spectral domains. Cellular organelles such as nucleus, mitochondria, microtubule and Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER), were clearly revealed in the TPEF images.

  8. Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Assay for Direct Visualization of Protein-Protein Interaction in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Lai, Hsien-Tsung; Chiang, Cheng-Ming

    2016-01-01

    Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) assay is a method used to directly visualize protein-protein interaction in vivo using live-cell imaging or fixed cells. This protocol described here is based on our recent paper describing the functional association of human chromatin adaptor and transcription cofactor Brd4 with p53 tumor suppressor protein (Wu et al., 2013). BiFC was first described by Hu et al. (2002) using two non-fluorescent protein fragments of enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (EYFP), which is an Aequorea victoria GFP variant protein, fused respectively to a Rel family protein and a bZIP family transcription factor to investigate interactions between these two family members in living cells. The YFP was later improved by introducing mutations to reduce its sensitivity to pH and chloride ions, thus generating a super-enhanced YFP, named Venus fluorescent protein, without showing diminished fluorescence at 37 °C as typically observed with EYFP (Nagai et al., 2006). The fluorescence signal is regenerated by complementation of two non-fluorescent fragments (e.g., the Venus N-terminal 1–158 amino acid residues, called Venus-N, and its C-terminal 159–239 amino acid residues, named Venus-C; see Figure 1A and Gully et al., 2012; Ding et al., 2006; Kerppola, 2006) that are brought together by interaction between their respective fusion partners (e.g., Venus-N to p53, and Venus-C to the PDID domain of human Brd4; see Figure 1B and 1C). The intensity and cellular location of the regenerated fluorescence signals can be detected by fluorescence microscope. The advantages of the proximity-based BiFC assay are: first, it allows a direct visualization of spatial and temporal interaction between two partner proteins in vivo; second, the fluorescence signal provides a sensitive readout for detecting protein-protein interaction even at a low expression level comparable to that of the endogenous proteins; third, the intensity of the fluorescence signal is

  9. Engineering of soybean mosaic virus as a versatile tool for studying protein-protein interactions in soybean.

    PubMed

    Seo, Jang-Kyun; Choi, Hong-Soo; Kim, Kook-Hyung

    2016-01-01

    Transient gene expression approaches are valuable tools for rapid introduction of genes of interest and characterization of their functions in plants. Although agroinfiltration is the most effectively and routinely used method for transient expression of multiple genes in various plant species, this approach has been largely unsuccessful in soybean. In this study, we engineered soybean mosaic virus (SMV) as a dual-gene delivery vector to simultaneously deliver and express two genes in soybean cells. We further show the application of the SMV-based dual vector for a bimolecular fluorescence complementation assay to visualize in vivo protein-protein interactions in soybean and for a co-immunoprecipitation assay to identify cellular proteins interacting with SMV helper component protease. This approach provides a rapid and cost-effective tool for transient introduction of multiple traits into soybean and for in vivo characterization of the soybean cellular protein interaction network. PMID:26926710

  10. A Bright and Fast Red Fluorescent Protein Voltage Indicator That Reports Neuronal Activity in Organotypic Brain Slices.

    PubMed

    Abdelfattah, Ahmed S; Farhi, Samouil L; Zhao, Yongxin; Brinks, Daan; Zou, Peng; Ruangkittisakul, Araya; Platisa, Jelena; Pieribone, Vincent A; Ballanyi, Klaus; Cohen, Adam E; Campbell, Robert E

    2016-02-24

    Optical imaging of voltage indicators based on green fluorescent proteins (FPs) or archaerhodopsin has emerged as a powerful approach for detecting the activity of many individual neurons with high spatial and temporal resolution. Relative to green FP-based voltage indicators, a bright red-shifted FP-based voltage indicator has the intrinsic advantages of lower phototoxicity, lower autofluorescent background, and compatibility with blue-light-excitable channelrhodopsins. Here, we report a bright red fluorescent voltage indicator (fluorescent indicator for voltage imaging red; FlicR1) with properties that are comparable to the best available green indicators. To develop FlicR1, we used directed protein evolution and rational engineering to screen libraries of thousands of variants. FlicR1 faithfully reports single action potentials (∼3% ΔF/F) and tracks electrically driven voltage oscillations at 100 Hz in dissociated Sprague Dawley rat hippocampal neurons in single trial recordings. Furthermore, FlicR1 can be easily imaged with wide-field fluorescence microscopy. We demonstrate that FlicR1 can be used in conjunction with a blue-shifted channelrhodopsin for all-optical electrophysiology, although blue light photoactivation of the FlicR1 chromophore presents a challenge for applications that require spatially overlapping yellow and blue excitation. PMID:26911693

  11. Protein-flexibility mediated coupling between photoswitching kinetics and surrounding viscosity of a photochromic fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Kao, Ya-Ting; Zhu, Xinxin; Min, Wei

    2012-01-01

    Recent advances in fluorescent proteins (FPs) have generated a remarkable family of optical highlighters with special light responses. Among them, Dronpa exhibits a unique capability of reversible light-regulated on-off switching. However, the environmental dependence of this photochromism is largely unexplored. Herein we report that the photoswitching kinetics of the chromophore inside Dronpa is actually slowed down by increasing medium viscosity outside Dronpa. This finding is a special example of an FP where the environment can exert a hydrodynamic effect on the internal chromophore. We attribute this effect to protein-flexibility mediated coupling where the chromophore’s cis-trans isomerization during photoswitching is accompanied by conformational motion of a part of the protein β-barrel whose dynamics should be hindered by medium friction. Consistent with this mechanism, the photoswitching kinetics of Dronpa-3, a structurally more flexible mutant, is found to exhibit a more pronounced viscosity dependence. Furthermore, we mapped out spatial distributions of microviscosity in live cells experienced by a histone protein using the photoswitching kinetics of Dronpa-3 fusion as a contrast mechanism. This unique reporter should provide protein-specific information about the crowded intracellular environments by offering a genetically encoded microviscosity probe, which did not exist with normal FPs before. PMID:22328153

  12. Red fluorescent proteins (RFPs) and RFP-based biosensors for neuronal imaging applications

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Yi; Lai, Tiffany; Campbell, Robert E.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract. The inherent advantages of red-shifted fluorescent proteins and fluorescent protein-based biosensors for the study of signaling processes in neurons and other tissues have motivated the development of a plethora of new tools. Relative to green fluorescent proteins (GFPs) and other blue-shifted alternatives, red fluorescent proteins (RFPs) provide the inherent advantages of lower phototoxicity, lower autofluorescence, and deeper tissue penetration associated with longer wavelength excitation light. All other factors being the same, the multiple benefits of using RFPs make these tools seemingly ideal candidates for use in neurons and, ultimately, the brain. However, for many applications, the practical utility of RFPs still falls short of the preferred GFPs. We present an overview of RFPs and RFP-based biosensors, with an emphasis on their reported applications in neuroscience. PMID:26158012

  13. Evaluation of Chemical Fluorescent Dyes as a Protein Conjugation Partner for Live Cell Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi-Takanaka, Yoko; Stasevich, Timothy J.; Kurumizaka, Hitoshi; Nozaki, Naohito; Kimura, Hiroshi

    2014-01-01

    To optimize live cell fluorescence imaging, the choice of fluorescent substrate is a critical factor. Although genetically encoded fluorescent proteins have been used widely, chemical fluorescent dyes are still useful when conjugated to proteins or ligands. However, little information is available for the suitability of different fluorescent dyes for live imaging. We here systematically analyzed the property of a number of commercial fluorescent dyes when conjugated with antigen-binding (Fab) fragments directed against specific histone modifications, in particular, phosphorylated H3S28 (H3S28ph) and acetylated H3K9 (H3K9ac). These Fab fragments were conjugated with a fluorescent dye and loaded into living HeLa cells. H3S28ph-specific Fab fragments were expected to be enriched in condensed chromosomes, as H3S28 is phosphorylated during mitosis. However, the degree of Fab fragment enrichment on mitotic chromosomes varied depending on the conjugated dye. In general, green fluorescent dyes showed higher enrichment, compared to red and far-red fluorescent dyes, even when dye∶protein conjugation ratios were similar. These differences are partly explained by an altered affinity of Fab fragment after dye-conjugation; some dyes have less effect on the affinity, while others can affect it more. Moreover, red and far-red fluorescent dyes tended to form aggregates in the cytoplasm. Similar results were observed when H3K9ac-specific Fab fragments were used, suggesting that the properties of each dye affect different Fab fragments similarly. According to our analysis, conjugation with green fluorescent dyes, like Alexa Fluor 488 and Dylight 488, has the least effect on Fab affinity and is the best for live cell imaging, although these dyes are less photostable than red fluorescent dyes. When multicolor imaging is required, we recommend the following dye combinations for optimal results: Alexa Fluor 488 (green), Cy3 (red), and Cy5 or CF640 (far-red). PMID:25184362

  14. Bright Fluorescence Monitoring System Utilizing Zoanthus sp. Green Fluorescent Protein (ZsGreen) for Human G-Protein-Coupled Receptor Signaling in Microbial Yeast Cells

    PubMed Central

    Nakamura, Yasuyuki; Ishii, Jun; Kondo, Akihiko

    2013-01-01

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are currently the most important pharmaceutical targets for drug discovery because they regulate a wide variety of physiological processes. Consequently, simple and convenient detection systems for ligands that regulate the function of GPCR have attracted attention as powerful tools for new drug development. We previously developed a yeast-based fluorescence reporter ligand detection system using flow cytometry. However, using this conventional detection system, fluorescence from a cell expressing GFP and responding to a ligand is weak, making detection of these cells by fluorescence microscopy difficult. We here report improvements to the conventional yeast fluorescence reporter assay system resulting in the development of a new highly-sensitive fluorescence reporter assay system with extremely bright fluorescence and high signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio. This new system allowed the easy detection of GPCR signaling in yeast using fluorescence microscopy. Somatostatin receptor and neurotensin receptor (implicated in Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, respectively) were chosen as human GPCR(s). The facile detection of binding to these receptors by cognate peptide ligands was demonstrated. In addition, we established a highly sensitive ligand detection system using yeast cell surface display technology that is applicable to peptide screening, and demonstrate that the display of various peptide analogs of neurotensin can activate signaling through the neurotensin receptor in yeast cells. Our system could be useful for identifying lead peptides with agonistic activity towards targeted human GPCR(s). PMID:24340008

  15. Ultrafast fluorescence dynamics of FMN-binding protein from Desulfovibrio vulgaris (Miyazaki F) and its site-directed mutated proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chosrowjan, Haik; Taniguchi, Seiji; Mataga, Noboru; Tanaka, Fumio; Todoroki, Daisuke; Kitamura, Masaya

    2008-09-01

    Ultrafast fluorescence dynamics of FMN in FMN-binding protein (FMN-bp), and its mutated proteins, W32Y and W32A, were investigated by the fluorescence up-conversion method. Fluorescence lifetimes were 167 fs (96%) and 1.5 ps (4%) in wild-type FMN-bp (WT), and 3.4 ps (23%), 18.2 ps (74%), and 96 ps (3%) at 530 nm in W32Y, and 30.1 ps in W32A. The fluorescence lifetime of W32A, in which Trp-32 was absent, was about 140 times longer than that of WT. Tyr-32 in W32Y was not so effective quencher as Trp-32 in WT. This was explained in terms of different ionization potentials of quenchers and average donor-acceptor distances in the protein.

  16. Fiber-optic system for monitoring fast photoactivation dynamics of optical highlighter fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    Pei, Zhiguo; Qin, Lingsong; Zhang, Zhihong; Zeng, Shaoqun; Huang, Zhen-Li

    2011-01-01

    Characterizing the photoactivation performance of optical highlighter fluorescent proteins is crucial to the realization of photoactivation localization microscopy. In contrast to those fluorescence-based approaches that require complex data processing and calibration procedures, here we report a simple and quantitative alternative, which relies on the measurement of small absorption spectra changes over time with a fiber-optic system. Using Dronpa as a representative highlighter protein, we have investigated the capacity of this system in monitoring the fast photoactivation process. PMID:21833352

  17. Site-specific analysis of protein hydration based on unnatural amino acid fluorescence.

    PubMed

    Amaro, Mariana; Brezovský, Jan; Kováčová, Silvia; Sýkora, Jan; Bednář, David; Němec, Václav; Lišková, Veronika; Kurumbang, Nagendra Prasad; Beerens, Koen; Chaloupková, Radka; Paruch, Kamil; Hof, Martin; Damborský, Jiří

    2015-04-22

    Hydration of proteins profoundly affects their functions. We describe a simple and general method for site-specific analysis of protein hydration based on the in vivo incorporation of fluorescent unnatural amino acids and their analysis by steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy. Using this method, we investigate the hydration of functionally important regions of dehalogenases. The experimental results are compared to findings from molecular dynamics simulations. PMID:25815779

  18. The role of protein characteristics in the formation and fluorescence of Au nanoclusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Yaolin; Sherwood, Jennifer; Qin, Ying; Crowley, Dorothy; Bonizzoni, Marco; Bao, Yuping

    2014-01-01

    Protein-encapsulated gold nanoclusters have shown many advantages over other gold nanocluster systems, including green synthesis, biocompatibility, high water solubility, and the ease of further conjugation. In this article, we systematically investigated the effects of the protein size and amino acid content on the formation and fluorescent properties of gold nanoclusters using four model proteins (bovine serum albumin, lysozyme, trypsin, and pepsin). We discovered that the balance of amine and tyrosine/tryptophan containing residues was critical for the nanocluster formation. Protein templates with low cysteine contents caused blue shifts in the fluorescent emissions and difference in fluorescent lifetimes of the gold nanoclusters. Furthermore, the protein size was found to be a critical factor for the photostability and long-term stability of gold nanoclusters. The size of the protein also affected the Au nanocluster behaviour after immobilization.Protein-encapsulated gold nanoclusters have shown many advantages over other gold nanocluster systems, including green synthesis, biocompatibility, high water solubility, and the ease of further conjugation. In this article, we systematically investigated the effects of the protein size and amino acid content on the formation and fluorescent properties of gold nanoclusters using four model proteins (bovine serum albumin, lysozyme, trypsin, and pepsin). We discovered that the balance of amine and tyrosine/tryptophan containing residues was critical for the nanocluster formation. Protein templates with low cysteine contents caused blue shifts in the fluorescent emissions and difference in fluorescent lifetimes of the gold nanoclusters. Furthermore, the protein size was found to be a critical factor for the photostability and long-term stability of gold nanoclusters. The size of the protein also affected the Au nanocluster behaviour after immobilization. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available See DOI: 10

  19. Established and emerging fluorescence-based assays for G-protein function: heterotrimeric G-protein alpha subunits and regulator of G-protein signaling (RGS) proteins.

    PubMed

    Kimple, Randall J; Jones, Miller B; Shutes, Adam; Yerxa, Benjamin R; Siderovski, David P; Willard, Francis S

    2003-06-01

    Heterotrimeric G-proteins are molecular switches that couple serpentine receptors to intracellular effector pathways and the regulation of cell physiology. Ligand-bound receptors cause G-protein alpha subunits to bind guanosine 5'-triphosphate (GTP) and activate effector pathways. Signal termination is facilitated by the intrinsic GTPase activity of G-protein alpha subunits. Regulators of G-protein signaling (RGS) proteins accelerate the GTPase activity of the G-protein alpha subunit, and thus negatively regulate G-protein-mediated signal transduction. In vitro biochemical assays of heterotrimeric G-proteins commonly include measurements of nucleotide binding, GTPase activity, and interaction with RGS proteins. However, the conventional assays for most of these processes involve radiolabeled guanine nucleotide analogues and scintillation counting. In this article, we focus on fluorescence-based methodologies to study heterotrimeric G-protein alpha subunit regulation in vitro. Furthermore, we consider the potential of such techniques in high-throughput screening and drug discovery. PMID:12769684

  20. Light-Inducible Gene Regulation with Engineered Zinc Finger Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Polstein, Lauren R.; Gersbach, Charles A.

    2014-01-01

    The coupling of light-inducible protein-protein interactions with gene regulation systems has enabled the control of gene expression with light. In particular, heterodimer protein pairs from plants can be used to engineer a gene regulation system in mammalian cells that is reversible, repeatable, tunable, controllable in a spatiotemporal manner, and targetable to any DNA sequence. This system, Light-Inducible Transcription using Engineered Zinc finger proteins (LITEZ), is based on the blue light-induced interaction of GIGANTEA and the LOV domain of FKF1 that drives the localization of a transcriptional activator to the DNA-binding site of a highly customizable engineered zinc finger protein. This chapter provides methods for modifying LITEZ to target new DNA sequences, engineering a programmable LED array to illuminate cell cultures, and using the modified LITEZ system to achieve spatiotemporal control of transgene expression in mammalian cells. PMID:24718797

  1. Tolerance of a Knotted Near-Infrared Fluorescent Protein to Random Circular Permutation.

    PubMed

    Pandey, Naresh; Kuypers, Brianna E; Nassif, Barbara; Thomas, Emily E; Alnahhas, Razan N; Segatori, Laura; Silberg, Jonathan J

    2016-07-12

    Bacteriophytochrome photoreceptors (BphP) are knotted proteins that have been developed as near-infrared fluorescent protein (iRFP) reporters of gene expression. To explore how rearrangements in the peptides that interlace into the knot within the BphP photosensory core affect folding, we subjected iRFPs to random circular permutation using an improved transposase mutagenesis strategy and screened for variants that fluoresce. We identified 27 circularly permuted iRFPs that display biliverdin-dependent fluorescence in Escherichia coli. The variants with the brightest whole cell fluorescence initiated translation at residues near the domain linker and knot tails, although fluorescent variants that initiated translation within the PAS and GAF domains were discovered. Circularly permuted iRFPs retained sufficient cofactor affinity to fluoresce in tissue culture without the addition of biliverdin, and one variant displayed enhanced fluorescence when expressed in bacteria and tissue culture. This variant displayed a quantum yield similar to that of iRFPs but exhibited increased resistance to chemical denaturation, suggesting that the observed increase in the magnitude of the signal arose from more efficient protein maturation. These results show how the contact order of a knotted BphP can be altered without disrupting chromophore binding and fluorescence, an important step toward the creation of near-infrared biosensors with expanded chemical sensing functions for in vivo imaging. PMID:27304983

  2. Green fluorescent protein-doped sol-gel silica planar waveguide to detect organophosphorus compound

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Enami, Y.; Suye, S.

    2012-02-01

    We report novel living protein-doped planar waveguide, and real-time detection of an organophosphorus compound using a sol-gel silica planar waveguide doped with a green fluorescent protein and an organophosphorus hydrolase on a yeast-cell surface. The waveguide was pumped at 488 nm, and emitted green fluorescence at the far field. The green fluorescent light at 550 nm changed by 50% from the original power 1 min after application of the organophosphorus compound. The results enable the real-time detection of biochemical weapon and insecticide harmful for human body by using an in-line fiber sensor network.

  3. Simultaneous laser-induced fluorescence and Raman imaging inside a hydrogen engine.

    PubMed

    Engel, Sascha Ronald; Koch, Peter; Braeuer, Andreas; Leipertz, Alfred

    2009-12-10

    We report on the simultaneous and two-dimensional measurement of laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) and Raman scattering (Ramanography) applied inside a hydrogen internal combustion (IC) engine. Two different LIF tracer molecules, triethylamine (TEA) and trimethylamine (TMA), were used for the LIF experiments. The LIF and Raman results were found to be in very good agreement. The simultaneous application of Ramanography and LIF imaging indicated that TMA is the more suitable LIF tracer molecule, compared to TEA. PMID:20011004

  4. TSQ, a Common Fluorescent Sensor for Cellular Zinc, Images Zinc Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Meeusen, Jeffrey W.; Tomasiewicz, Henry; Nowakowski, Andrew; Petering, David H.

    2011-01-01

    Zn2+ is a necessary cofactor for thousands of mammalian proteins. Research has suggested that transient fluxes of cellular Zn2+ are also involved in processes such as apoptosis. Observations of Zn2+ trafficking have been collected using Zn2+ responsive fluorescent dyes. A commonly used Zn2+ fluorophore is TSQ. The chemical species responsible for TSQ's observed fluorescence in resting or activated cells have not been characterized. Parallel fluorescence microscopy and spectrofluorometry of LLC-PK1 cells incubated with TSQ demonstrated punctate staining that concentrated around the nucleus and was characterized by an emission maximum near 470 nm. Addition of cell permeable Zn-pyrithione resulted in greatly increased, diffuse fluorescence that shifted the emission peak to 490 nm, indicative of the formation of Zn(TSQ)2. TPEN, a cell permeant Zn2+ chelator, largely quenched TSQ fluorescence returning the residual fluorescence to the 470 nm emission maximum. Gel filtration chromatography of cell supernatant from LLC-PK1 cells treated with TSQ revealed that TSQ fluorescence (470 nm emission) eluted with the proteome fractions. Similarly, addition of TSQ to proteome prior to chromatography resulted in 470 nm fluorescence emission that was not observed in smaller molecular weight fractions. It is hypothesized that Zn-TSQ fluorescence, blue-shifted from the 490 nm emission maximum of Zn(TSQ)2, results from ternary complex, TSQ-Zn-protein formation. As an example, Zn-carbonic anhydrase formed a ternary adduct with TSQ characterized by a fluorescence emission maximum of 470 nm and a dissociation constant of 1.55 × 10-7 M. Quantification of TSQ-Zn-proteome fluorescence indicated that approximately 8% of cellular Zn2+ was imaged by TSQ. These results were generalized to other cell types and model Zn-proteins. PMID:21774459

  5. Heat generation and light scattering of green fluorescent protein-like pigments in coral tissue.

    PubMed

    Lyndby, Niclas H; Kühl, Michael; Wangpraseurt, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP)-like pigments have been proposed to have beneficial effects on coral photobiology. Here, we investigated the relationships between green fluorescence, coral heating and tissue optics for the massive coral Dipsastraea sp. (previously Favia sp.). We used microsensors to measure tissue scalar irradiance and temperature along with hyperspectral imaging and combined imaging of variable chlorophyll fluorescence and green fluorescence. Green fluorescence correlated positively with coral heating and scalar irradiance enhancement at the tissue surface. Coral tissue heating saturated for maximal levels of green fluorescence. The action spectrum of coral surface heating revealed that heating was highest under red (peaking at 680 nm) irradiance. Scalar irradiance enhancement in coral tissue was highest when illuminated with blue light, but up to 62% (for the case of highest green fluorescence) of this photon enhancement was due to green fluorescence emission. We suggest that GFP-like pigments scatter the incident radiation, which enhances light absorption and heating of the coral. However, heating saturates, because intense light scattering reduces the vertical penetration depth through the tissue eventually leading to reduced light absorption at high fluorescent pigment density. We conclude that fluorescent pigments can have a central role in modulating coral light absorption and heating. PMID:27225857

  6. Heat generation and light scattering of green fluorescent protein-like pigments in coral tissue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyndby, Niclas H.; Kühl, Michael; Wangpraseurt, Daniel

    2016-05-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP)-like pigments have been proposed to have beneficial effects on coral photobiology. Here, we investigated the relationships between green fluorescence, coral heating and tissue optics for the massive coral Dipsastraea sp. (previously Favia sp.). We used microsensors to measure tissue scalar irradiance and temperature along with hyperspectral imaging and combined imaging of variable chlorophyll fluorescence and green fluorescence. Green fluorescence correlated positively with coral heating and scalar irradiance enhancement at the tissue surface. Coral tissue heating saturated for maximal levels of green fluorescence. The action spectrum of coral surface heating revealed that heating was highest under red (peaking at 680 nm) irradiance. Scalar irradiance enhancement in coral tissue was highest when illuminated with blue light, but up to 62% (for the case of highest green fluorescence) of this photon enhancement was due to green fluorescence emission. We suggest that GFP-like pigments scatter the incident radiation, which enhances light absorption and heating of the coral. However, heating saturates, because intense light scattering reduces the vertical penetration depth through the tissue eventually leading to reduced light absorption at high fluorescent pigment density. We conclude that fluorescent pigments can have a central role in modulating coral light absorption and heating.

  7. Heat generation and light scattering of green fluorescent protein-like pigments in coral tissue

    PubMed Central

    Lyndby, Niclas H.; Kühl, Michael; Wangpraseurt, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP)-like pigments have been proposed to have beneficial effects on coral photobiology. Here, we investigated the relationships between green fluorescence, coral heating and tissue optics for the massive coral Dipsastraea sp. (previously Favia sp.). We used microsensors to measure tissue scalar irradiance and temperature along with hyperspectral imaging and combined imaging of variable chlorophyll fluorescence and green fluorescence. Green fluorescence correlated positively with coral heating and scalar irradiance enhancement at the tissue surface. Coral tissue heating saturated for maximal levels of green fluorescence. The action spectrum of coral surface heating revealed that heating was highest under red (peaking at 680 nm) irradiance. Scalar irradiance enhancement in coral tissue was highest when illuminated with blue light, but up to 62% (for the case of highest green fluorescence) of this photon enhancement was due to green fluorescence emission. We suggest that GFP-like pigments scatter the incident radiation, which enhances light absorption and heating of the coral. However, heating saturates, because intense light scattering reduces the vertical penetration depth through the tissue eventually leading to reduced light absorption at high fluorescent pigment density. We conclude that fluorescent pigments can have a central role in modulating coral light absorption and heating. PMID:27225857

  8. Effect of pH on the Heat-Induced Denaturation and Renaturation of Green Fluorescent Protein: A Laboratory Experiment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flores, Rosa V.; Sola, Hilda M.; Torres, Juan C.; Torres, Rafael E.; Guzman, Ernick E.

    2013-01-01

    A fluorescence spectroscopy experiment is described where students integrated biochemistry and instrumental analysis, while characterizing the green fluorescent protein excitation and emission spectra in terms of its phenolic and phenolate chromophores. Students studied the combined effect of pH and temperature on the protein's fluorescence,…

  9. Fluorescence-Detectino Size-Exclusion Chromatography for Precrystallization Screening of Integral Membrane Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Kawate,T.; Gouaux, E.

    2006-01-01

    Formation of well-ordered crystals of membrane proteins is a bottleneck for structure determination by X-ray crystallography. Nevertheless, one can increase the probability of successful crystallization by precrystallization screening, a process by which one analyzes the monodispersity and stability of the protein-detergent complex. Traditionally, this has required microgram to milligram quantities of purified protein and a concomitant investment of time and resources. Here, we describe a rapid and efficient precrystallization screening strategy in which the target protein is covalently fused to green fluorescent protein (GFP) and the resulting unpurified protein is analyzed by fluorescence-detection size-exclusion chromatography (FSEC). This strategy requires only nanogram quantities of unpurified protein and allows one to evaluate localization and expression level, the degree of monodispersity, and the approximate molecular mass. We show the application of this precrystallization screening to four membrane proteins derived from prokaryotic or eukaryotic organisms.

  10. Enhanced fluorescence of proteins and label-free bioassays using aluminum nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Ray, Krishanu; Szmacinski, Henryk; Lakowicz, Joseph R

    2009-08-01

    We report the enhanced intrinsic fluorescence from several proteins in proximity to aluminum nanostructured surfaces. Intrinsic fluorescence in proteins is dominated by the tryptophan residues. Intensities and lifetimes of several proteins with different numbers of tryptophan residues assembled on the surfaces of quartz or aluminum nanostructured films were measured. Immobilized protein molecules on the surface of an aluminum nanostructured film resulted in a significant fluorescence intensity enhancement (up to 14-fold) and lifetime decrease (up to 6-fold) compared to the quartz substrates. These large spectroscopic changes allow design of label-free bioassays where detection of binding interactions between proteins can be observed in the presence of a bulk sample solution. Binding of streptavidin to the biotinylated aluminum surface was demonstrated in the presence of 100 microg/mL bovine serum albumin in the sample solution by measurements of tryptophan intensity and lifetime changes. PMID:19594133

  11. Genetically Encoded Optochemical Probes for Simultaneous Fluorescence Reporting and Light Activation of Protein Function with Two-Photon Excitation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The site-specific incorporation of three new coumarin lysine analogues into proteins was achieved in bacterial and mammalian cells using an engineered pyrrolysyl-tRNA synthetase system. The genetically encoded coumarin lysines were successfully applied as fluorescent cellular probes for protein localization and for the optical activation of protein function. As a proof-of-principle, photoregulation of firefly luciferase was achieved in live cells by caging a key lysine residue, and excellent OFF to ON light-switching ratios were observed. Furthermore, two-photon and single-photon optochemical control of EGFP maturation was demonstrated, enabling the use of different, potentially orthogonal excitation wavelengths (365, 405, and 760 nm) for the sequential activation of protein function in live cells. These results demonstrate that coumarin lysines are a new and valuable class of optical probes that can be used for the investigation and regulation of protein structure, dynamics, function, and localization in live cells. The small size of coumarin, the site-specific incorporation, the application as both a light-activated caging group and as a fluorescent probe, and the broad range of excitation wavelengths are advantageous over other genetically encoded photocontrol systems and provide a precise and multifunctional tool for cellular biology. PMID:25341086

  12. Polarization-dependent fluorescence of proteins bound to nanopore-confined lipid bilayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, R.-Q.; Marek, A.; Smirnov, Alex I.; Grebel, H.

    2008-09-01

    Lipid bilayers are essential structural component of biological membranes of all the living species: from viruses and bacteria to plants and humans. Biophysical and biochemical properties of such membranes are important for understanding physical mechanisms responsible for drug targeting. Binding events between proteins and the membrane may be ascertained by introducing fluorescence markers (chromophores) to the proteins. Here we describe a novel biosensing platform designed to enhance signals of these fluorescence markers. Nanoporous aluminum oxide membranes with and without gold (Au) surface coating have been employed for optical detection of bound conjugated streptavidin to biotinylated lipid bilayers-a model system that mimics protein docking to the membrane surface. Unexpectedly, it was found that fluorescence signals from such structures vary when pumped with E-polarized and H-polarized incident optical beams. The origin of the observed polarization-dependent effects and the implications for enhanced fluorescence detection in a biochip format are being discussed.

  13. Control of the blue fluorescent protein with advanced evolutionary pulse shaping

    SciTech Connect

    Tkaczyk, Eric R. Mauring, Koit; Tkaczyk, Alan H.; Krasnenko, Veera; Ye, Jing Yong; Baker, James R.; Norris, Theodore B.

    2008-11-28

    We demonstrate optical coherent control of the two-photon fluorescence of the blue fluorescent protein (BFP), which is of interest in investigations of protein-protein interactions. In addition to biological relevance, BFP represents an interesting target for coherent control from a chemical perspective due to its many components of highly nonexponential fluorescence decay and low quantum yield resulting from excited state isomerization. Using a genetic algorithm with a multiplicative (rather than ratiometric) fitness parameter, we are able to control the ratio of BFP fluorescence to second-harmonic generation without a considerable drop in the maximized signal. The importance of linear chirp and power-scaling on the discrimination process is investigated in detail.

  14. Fluorescence energy transfer monitoring of protein-protein interaction in human cells: the Cyclin T1-HIV1 Tat case.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrari, Aldo; Cinelli, Riccardo A. G.; Pellegrini, Vittorio; Beltram, Fabio; Marcello, Alessandro; Tyagi, Mudit; Giacca, Mauro

    2001-03-01

    The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) Tat protein promotes transcriptional elongation of viral RNAs. Here we show that human Cyclin T1 directly binds Tat in cultured cells. By mapping fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) in different cellular compartments we shall present a quantitative analysis of this interaction. The matched tagging pair consists of two optically matched variants of the green fluorescent protein: the enhanced GFP and the blue fluorescent protein. Strong energy transfer was observed between Cyclin T1 and Tat both in the cytoplasm and in specific subnuclear regions. We shall argue that such high-resolution optical studies can provide significant new insight in molecular processes and demonstrate that, for the specific case-study presented, they lead to a model by which Tat recruits Cyclin T1 out of the nuclear compartments where the protein resides to promote transcriptional activation.

  15. Comparative study reveals better far-red fluorescent protein for whole body imaging

    PubMed Central

    Luker, K.E.; Pata, P.; Shemiakina, I.I.; Pereverzeva, A.; Stacer, A.C.; Shcherbo, D.S.; Pletnev, V.Z.; Skolnaja, M.; Lukyanov, K.A.; Luker, G.D.; Pata, I.; Chudakov, D.M.

    2015-01-01

    Genetically encoded far-red and near-infrared fluorescent proteins enable efficient imaging in studies of tumorigenesis, embryogenesis, and inflammation in model animals. Here we report comparative testing of available GFP-like far-red fluorescent proteins along with a modified protein, named Katushka2S, and near-infrared bacterial phytochrome-based markers. We compare fluorescence signal and signal-to-noise ratio at various excitation wavelength and emission filter combinations using transiently transfected cell implants in mice, providing a basis for rational choice of optimal marker(s) for in vivo imaging studies. We demonstrate that the signals of various far-red fluorescent proteins can be spectrally unmixed based on different signal-to-noise ratios in different channels, providing the straightforward possibility of multiplexed imaging with standard equipment. Katushka2S produced the brightest and fastest maturing fluorescence in all experimental setups. At the same time, signal-to-noise ratios for Katushka2S and near-infrared bacterial phytochrome, iRFP720 were comparable in their optimal channels. Distinct spectral and genetic characteristics suggest this pair of a far-red and a near-infrared fluorescent protein as an optimal combination for dual color, whole body imaging studies in model animals. PMID:26035795

  16. Unraveling transcription factor interactions with heterochromatin protein 1 using fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegel, Amanda P.; Hays, Nicole M.; Day, Richard N.

    2013-02-01

    The epigenetic control of heterochromatin deposition is achieved through a network of protein interactions mediated by the heterochromatin protein 1 (HP1). In earlier studies, we showed that the CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein alpha (C/EBPα), a transcription factor that controls cell differentiation, localizes to heterochromatin, and interacts with HP1α. Here, deletion and mutagenesis are combined with live-cell imaging approaches to characterize these protein interactions. The results demonstrate that the basic region and leucine zipper (BZip) domain of C/EBPα is sufficient for the interaction with HP1α in regions of heterochromatin. Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy and cross-correlation (FCS and FCCS) revealed very different diffusion profiles for HP1α and the BZip protein, and co-expression studies indicated that the mobile fractions of these nuclear proteins diffuse independently of one another. The steady-state interactions of these proteins in regions of heterochromatin were monitored using Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET). A point mutation in HP1α, W174A, which disrupts the interactions with proteins containing the common PxVxL motif did not affect the interaction with the BZip protein. In contrast, the HP1α W41A mutation, which prevents binding to methylated histones, exhibited greatly reduced FRET efficiency when compared to the wild type HP1α or HP1αW174A. The functional significance of these interactions is discussed.

  17. Engineering Proteins for Thermostability with iRDP Web Server

    PubMed Central

    Ghanate, Avinash; Ramasamy, Sureshkumar; Suresh, C. G.

    2015-01-01

    Engineering protein molecules with desired structure and biological functions has been an elusive goal. Development of industrially viable proteins with improved properties such as stability, catalytic activity and altered specificity by modifying the structure of an existing protein has widely been targeted through rational protein engineering. Although a range of factors contributing to thermal stability have been identified and widely researched, the in silico implementation of these as strategies directed towards enhancement of protein stability has not yet been explored extensively. A wide range of structural analysis tools is currently available for in silico protein engineering. However these tools concentrate on only a limited number of factors or individual protein structures, resulting in cumbersome and time-consuming analysis. The iRDP web server presented here provides a unified platform comprising of iCAPS, iStability and iMutants modules. Each module addresses different facets of effective rational engineering of proteins aiming towards enhanced stability. While iCAPS aids in selection of target protein based on factors contributing to structural stability, iStability uniquely offers in silico implementation of known thermostabilization strategies in proteins for identification and stability prediction of potential stabilizing mutation sites. iMutants aims to assess mutants based on changes in local interaction network and degree of residue conservation at the mutation sites. Each module was validated using an extensively diverse dataset. The server is freely accessible at http://irdp.ncl.res.in and has no login requirements. PMID:26436543

  18. Combining random gene fission and rational gene fusion to discover near-infrared fluorescent protein fragments that report on protein-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Pandey, Naresh; Nobles, Christopher L; Zechiedrich, Lynn; Maresso, Anthony W; Silberg, Jonathan J

    2015-05-15

    Gene fission can convert monomeric proteins into two-piece catalysts, reporters, and transcription factors for systems and synthetic biology. However, some proteins can be challenging to fragment without disrupting function, such as near-infrared fluorescent protein (IFP). We describe a directed evolution strategy that can overcome this challenge by randomly fragmenting proteins and concomitantly fusing the protein fragments to pairs of proteins or peptides that associate. We used this method to create libraries that express fragmented IFP as fusions to a pair of associating peptides (IAAL-E3 and IAAL-K3) and proteins (CheA and CheY) and screened for fragmented IFP with detectable near-infrared fluorescence. Thirteen novel fragmented IFPs were identified, all of which arose from backbone fission proximal to the interdomain linker. Either the IAAL-E3 and IAAL-K3 peptides or CheA and CheY proteins could assist with IFP fragment complementation, although the IAAL-E3 and IAAL-K3 peptides consistently yielded higher fluorescence. These results demonstrate how random gene fission can be coupled to rational gene fusion to create libraries enriched in fragmented proteins with AND gate logic that is dependent upon a protein-protein interaction, and they suggest that these near-infrared fluorescent protein fragments will be suitable as reporters for pairs of promoters and protein-protein interactions within whole animals. PMID:25265085

  19. In vivo detecting matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity by a genetically engineered fluorescent probe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Jie; Zhang, Zhihong; Su, Ting; Luo, Qingming

    2007-02-01

    Degradation of the extracellular matrix (ECM) by matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) enhances tumor invasion and metastasis. To monitor MMP activity, we constructed plasmid that encoded a fluorescent sensor DC, in which an MMP substrate site (MSS) is sandwiched between DsRed2 and ECFP. MMPs are secretory proteins, only acting on the outside of cells; hence, an expressing vector was used that displayed the fluorescent sensor on the cellular surface. The DC was expressed in cells with high secretory MMP, so MSS was cleaved by MMP. Also, GM6001, an MMP inhibitor, causes DsRed2 signals to increase in living cells and on the chick embryo chorioallantoic membrane (CAM). Thus, this fluorescent sensor was able to sensitively monitor MMP activation in vivo. Potential applications for this sensor include high-throughput screening for MMP inhibitors for anti-cancer research, and detailed analysis of the effects of MMP inhibitors.

  20. Fluorescent probe for high-throughput screening of membrane protein expression

    PubMed Central

    Backmark, A E; Olivier, N; Snijder, A; Gordon, E; Dekker, N; Ferguson, A D

    2013-01-01

    Screening of protein variants requires specific detection methods to assay protein levels and stability in crude mixtures. Many strategies apply fluorescence-detection size-exclusion chromatography (FSEC) using green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion proteins to qualitatively monitor expression, stability, and monodispersity. However, GFP fusion proteins have several important disadvantages; including false-positives, protein aggregation after proteolytic removal of GFP, and reductions in protein yields without the GFP fusion. Here we describe a FSEC screening strategy based on a fluorescent multivalent NTA probe that interacts with polyhistidine-tags on target proteins. This method overcomes the limitations of GFP fusion proteins, and can be used to rank protein production based on qualitative and quantitative parameters. Domain boundaries of the human G-protein coupled adenosine A2a receptor were readily identified from crude detergent-extracts of a library of construct variants transiently produced in suspension-adapted HEK293-6E cells. Well expressing clones of MraY, an important bacterial infection target, could be identified from a library of 24 orthologs. This probe provides a highly sensitive tool to detect target proteins to expression levels down to 0.02 mg/L in crude lysate, and requires minimal amounts of cell culture. PMID:23776061

  1. Beyond directed evolution - semi-rational protein engineering and design

    PubMed Central

    Lutz, Stefan

    2010-01-01

    Over the last two decades, directed evolution has transformed the field of protein engineering. The advances in understanding protein structure and function, in no insignificant part a result of directed evolution studies, are increasingly empowering scientists and engineers to device more effective methods for manipulating and tailoring biocatalysts. Abandoning large combinatorial libraries, the focus has shifted to small, functionally-rich libraries and rational design. A critical component to the success of these emerging engineering strategies are computational tools for the evaluation of protein sequence datasets and the analysis of conformational variations of amino acids in proteins. Highlighting the opportunities and limitations of such approaches, this review focuses on recent engineering and design examples that require screening or selection of small libraries. PMID:20869867

  2. Novel multistep BRET-FRET energy transfer using nanoconjugates of firefly proteins, quantum dots, and red fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alam, Rabeka; Zylstra, Joshua; Fontaine, Danielle M.; Branchini, Bruce R.; Maye, Mathew M.

    2013-05-01

    Sequential bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET) and fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) from firefly luciferase to red fluorescent proteins using quantum dot or rod acceptor/donor linkers is described. The effect of morphology and tuned optical properties on the efficiency of this unique BRET-FRET system was evaluated.Sequential bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET) and fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) from firefly luciferase to red fluorescent proteins using quantum dot or rod acceptor/donor linkers is described. The effect of morphology and tuned optical properties on the efficiency of this unique BRET-FRET system was evaluated. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Experimental details, Fig. S1 and Table S1-S4. See DOI: 10.1039/c3nr01842c

  3. Protein and acidosis alter calcium-binding and fluorescence spectra of the calcium indicator indo-1.

    PubMed Central

    Baker, A J; Brandes, R; Schreur, J H; Camacho, S A; Weiner, M W

    1994-01-01

    The fluorescent indicator indo-1 is widely used to monitor intracellular calcium concentration. However, quantitation is limited by uncertain effects of the intracellular environment on indicator properties. The goal of this study was to determine the effects of protein and acidosis on the fluorescence spectra and calcium dissociation constant (Kd) of indo-1. With 350 nm excitation light, the ratio of indo-1 fluorescence in the absence versus the presence of saturating Ca2+ at wavelength lambda (S lambda) and Kd increased with [protein]. At pH 7.3, Kd, S400, and S470, which were 210 nM, 0.033, and 1.433 in the absence of protein, increased to 808 nM, 0.161, and 2.641, respectively, by adding proteins from frog muscle and to 638 nM, 0.304, and 3.039, respectively, by adding proteins from rat heart. Effects of protein on indo-1 fluorescence were reduced at higher [indo-1]. Acidosis (pH 6.3) had separate effects, which were additive to those of protein: in the absence of protein, acidosis increased Kd to 640 nM; frog muscle proteins further increased Kd to 1700 nM. Acidosis also changed S lambda slightly. In summary, interaction with protein or protons alters indo-1 calcium-binding and fluorescence. These findings are consistent with several previous studies and suggest that indo-1 calibration constants need to be derived in the presence of appropriate types of protein, ratio of [indo-1]/[protein], and pH. PMID:7819496

  4. Optical properties of green fluorescent proteins and their applications on virus infection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ja-Yun; Kao, Chia-Yun; Chen, Ying-Ju; Wu, Tzong-Yuan; Hsu, I.-Jen

    2007-07-01

    Exogenous fluorescent agents such as green fluorescent protein (GFP) have been widely used as biological indicators in bioimaging techniques. Although GFP and its mutants have been used in many applications, their optical properties have not been completely investigated, especially when they are under various environmental conditions. In this research, we developed a spectrum-analyzing system to investigate the fluorescent properties of GFP in the environments of different temperatures. We found that the fluorescent spectrum of GFP consisted of two components that might come from the transitions between different electronic energy states where the quantum efficiencies of the two components varied with different temperature. This effect was expected to come from the thermal effect on the electron populations in the molecular energy states of GFP. Furthermore, GFP was used as fluorescent marker to monitor the infection process of cells by viruses with a dynamic spectral imaging system. The recombinant baculoviruses containing the red and green fluorescent protein gene that can simultaneously produce dual fluorescence were used as vectors in insect cells. The system was used to monitor the spatial distribution of fluorescent spectra of cells infected by virus during the process of infection.

  5. Phasor approaches simplify the analysis of tryptophan fluorescence data in protein denaturation studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bader, Arjen N.; Visser, Nina V.; van Amerongen, Herbert; Visser, Antonie J. W. G.

    2014-12-01

    The intrinsic fluorescence of tryptophan is frequently used to investigate the structure of proteins. The analysis of tryptophan fluorescence data is challenging: fluorescence (anisotropy) decays typically have multiple lifetime (correlation time) components and fluorescence spectra are broad and exhibit only minor shifts. In this work, we show that phasor approaches can substantially simplify tryptophan fluorescence analysis. To demonstrate this, we re-analyse previously recorded datasets of the denaturant (guanidinium hydrochloride, GuHCl) induced unfolding of a single-tryptophan-containing variant of apoflavodoxin from Azotobacter vinelandii. For three methods—(1) time-resolved fluorescence, (2) time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy and (3) steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy—we show that the phasor analysis can readily identify the presence of a folding intermediate. Moreover, the fractional contributions of protein states at various stages of unfolding and the values of the free energy difference of the unfolding process ≤ft(Δ G\\text{UN}0\\right) are obtained. The outcomes are compared to the global analysis results published previously.

  6. Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Assay for Protein-Protein Interaction in Onion Cells Using the Helios Gene Gun

    PubMed Central

    Hollender, Courtney A.; Liu, Zhongchi

    2010-01-01

    Investigation of gene function in diverse organisms relies on knowledge of how the gene products interact with each other in their normal cellular environment. The Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Assay1 allows researchers to visualize protein-protein interactions in living cells and has become an essential research tool. This assay is based on the facilitated association of two fragments of a fluorescent protein (GFP) that are each fused to a potential interacting protein partner. The interaction of the two protein partners would facilitate the association of the N-terminal and C-terminal fragment of GFP, leading to fluorescence. For plant researchers, onion epidermal cells are an ideal experimental system for conducting the BiFC assay because of the ease in obtaining and preparing onion tissues and the direct visualization of fluorescence with minimal background fluorescence. The Helios Gene Gun (BioRad) is commonly used for bombarding plasmid DNA into onion cells. We demonstrate the use of Helios Gene Gun to introduce plasmid constructs for two interacting Arabidopsis thaliana transcription factors, SEUSS (SEU) and LEUNIG HOMOLOG (LUH)2 and the visualization of their interactions mediated by BiFC in onion epidermal cells. PMID:20567209

  7. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) assay for protein-protein interaction in onion cells using the helios gene gun.

    PubMed

    Hollender, Courtney A; Liu, Zhongchi

    2010-01-01

    Investigation of gene function in diverse organisms relies on knowledge of how the gene products interact with each other in their normal cellular environment. The Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Assay(1) allows researchers to visualize protein-protein interactions in living cells and has become an essential research tool. This assay is based on the facilitated association of two fragments of a fluorescent protein (GFP) that are each fused to a potential interacting protein partner. The interaction of the two protein partners would facilitate the association of the N-terminal and C-terminal fragment of GFP, leading to fluorescence. For plant researchers, onion epidermal cells are an ideal experimental system for conducting the BiFC assay because of the ease in obtaining and preparing onion tissues and the direct visualization of fluorescence with minimal background fluorescence. The Helios Gene Gun (BioRad) is commonly used for bombarding plasmid DNA into onion cells. We demonstrate the use of Helios Gene Gun to introduce plasmid constructs for two interacting Arabidopsis thaliana transcription factors, SEUSS (SEU) and LEUNIG HOMOLOG (LUH)(2) and the visualization of their interactions mediated by BiFC in onion epidermal cells. PMID:20567209

  8. Effect of Fluorescently Labeling Protein Probes on Kinetics of Protein-Ligand Reactions

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Y.S.; Landry, J.P.; Fei, Y.Y.; Luo, J.T.; Wang, X.B.; Lam, K.S.

    2009-01-01

    We studied the effect of fluorescently labeling proteins on protein-ligand reactions. Un-labeled ligands (streptavidin-binding peptides and rabbit immunoglobulin G (IgG) as antigen targets) are immobilized on epoxy-functionalized glass slides. Unlabeled and Cy3-labeled protein probes from the same batch (streptavidin and goat antibodies) subsequently react with the surface-immobilized targets. By monitoring in situ the surface mass density change using an oblique-incidence reflectivity difference scanning microscope (a label-free detector), we measured kon and koff for streptavidin-peptide reactions and antibody-antigen reaction. We found that (1) equilibrium dissociation constants, defined as KD = koff/kon, for streptavidin-peptide reactions increases by a factor of 3 ~ 4 when the solution-phase streptavidin is labeled with Cy3 dye; and (2) KD for reactions of solution-phase goat anti-rabbit antibodies with rabbit IgG targets also change significantly when the goat antibodies are labeled with Cy3 dye. PMID:18991423

  9. Effect of fluorescently labeling protein probes on kinetics of protein-ligand reactions.

    PubMed

    Sun, Y S; Landry, J P; Fei, Y Y; Zhu, X D; Luo, J T; Wang, X B; Lam, K S

    2008-12-01

    We studied the effect of fluorescently labeling proteins on protein-ligand reactions. Unlabeled ligands (streptavidin-binding peptides and rabbit immunoglobulin G (IgG) as antigen targets) are immobilized on epoxy-functionalized glass slides. Unlabeled and Cy3-labeled protein probes from the same batch (streptavidin and goat antibodies) subsequently react with the surface-immobilized targets. By monitoring in situ the surface mass density change using an oblique-incidence reflectivity difference scanning microscope (a label-free detector), we measured k(on) and k(off) for streptavidin-peptide reactions and antibody-antigen reaction. We found that (1) equilibrium dissociation constants, defined as K(D) = k(off)/k(on), for streptavidin-peptide reactions increases by a factor of 3-4 when the solution-phase streptavidin is labeled with Cy3 dye and (2) K(D) for reactions of solution-phase goat anti-rabbit antibodies with rabbit IgG targets also change significantly when the goat antibodies are labeled with Cy3 dye. PMID:18991423

  10. Microfluidic flow cytometer for quantifying photobleaching of fluorescent proteins in cells.

    PubMed

    Lubbeck, Jennifer L; Dean, Kevin M; Ma, Hairong; Palmer, Amy E; Jimenez, Ralph

    2012-05-01

    Traditional flow cytometers are capable of rapid cellular assays on the basis of fluorescence intensity and light scatter. Microfluidic flow cytometers have largely followed the same path of technological development as their traditional counterparts; however, the significantly smaller transport distance and resulting lower cell speeds in microchannels provides for the opportunity to detect novel spectroscopic signatures based on multiple, nontemporally coincident excitation beams. Here, we characterize the design and operation of a cytometer with a three-beam, probe/bleach/probe geometry, employing HeLa suspension cells expressing fluorescent proteins. The data collection rate exceeds 20 cells/s under a range of beam intensities (5 kW to 179 kW/cm(2)). The measured percent photobleaching (ratio of fluorescence intensities excited by the first and third beams: S(beam3)/S(beam1)) partially resolves a mixture of four red fluorescent proteins in mixed samples. Photokinetic simulations are presented and demonstrate that the percent photobleaching reflects a combination of the reversible and irreversible photobleaching kinetics. By introducing a photobleaching optical signature, which complements traditional fluorescence intensity-based detection, this method adds another dimension to multichannel fluorescence cytometry and provides a means for flow-cytometry-based screening of directed libraries of fluorescent protein photobleaching. PMID:22424298

  11. An orange fluorescent protein tagging system for real-time pollen tracking

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Monitoring gene flow could be important for future transgenic crops, such as those producing plant-made-pharmaceuticals (PMPs) in open field production. A Nicotiana hybrid (Nicotiana. tabacum × Nicotiana glauca) shows limited male fertility and could be used as a bioconfined PMP platform. Effective assessment of gene flow from these plants is augmented with methods that utilize fluorescent proteins for transgenic pollen identification. Results We report the generation of a pollen tagging system utilizing an orange fluorescent protein to monitor pollen flow and as a visual assessment of transgene zygosity of the parent plant. This system was created to generate a tagged Nicotiana hybrid that could be used for the incidence of gene flow. Nicotiana tabacum ‘TN 90’ and Nicotiana glauca were successfully transformed via Agrobacterium tumefaciens to express the orange fluorescent protein gene, tdTomato-ER, in pollen and a green fluorescent protein gene, mgfp5-er, was expressed in vegetative structures of the plant. Hybrids were created that utilized the fluorescent proteins as a research tool for monitoring pollen movement and gene flow. Manual greenhouse crosses were used to assess hybrid sexual compatibility with N. tabacum, resulting in seed formation from hybrid pollination in 2% of crosses, which yielded non-viable seed. Pollen transfer to the hybrid formed seed in 19% of crosses and 10 out of 12 viable progeny showed GFP expression. Conclusion The orange fluorescent protein is visible when expressed in the pollen of N. glauca, N. tabacum, and the Nicotiana hybrid, although hybrid pollen did not appear as bright as the parent lines. The hybrid plants, which show limited ability to outcross, could provide bioconfinement with the benefit of detectable pollen using this system. Fluorescent protein-tagging could be a valuable tool for breeding and in vivo ecological monitoring. PMID:24070251

  12. Quantification of free cysteines in membrane and soluble proteins using a fluorescent dye and thermal unfolding

    PubMed Central

    Hagelueken, Gregor; Naismith, James H

    2013-01-01

    Cysteine is an extremely useful site for selective attachment of labels to proteins for many applications, including the study of protein structure in solution by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), fluorescence spectroscopy and medical imaging. The demand for quantitative data for these applications means that it is important to determine the extent of the cysteine labeling. The efficiency of labeling is sensitive to the 3D context of cysteine within the protein. Where the label or modification is not directly measurable by optical or magnetic spectroscopy, for example, in cysteine modification to dehydroalanine, assessing labeling efficiency is difficult. We describe a simple assay for determining the efficiency of modification of cysteine residues, which is based on an approach previously used to determine membrane protein stability. The assay involves a reaction between the thermally unfolded protein and a thiol-specific coumarin fluorophore that is only fluorescent upon conjugation with thiols. Monitoring fluorescence during thermal denaturation of the protein in the presence of the dye identifies the temperature at which the maximum fluorescence occurs; this temperature differs among proteins. Comparison of the fluorescence intensity at the identified temperature between modified, unmodified (positive control) and cysteine-less protein (negative control) allows for the quantification of free cysteine. We have quantified both site-directed spin labeling and dehydroalanine formation. The method relies on a commonly available fluorescence 96-well plate reader, which rapidly screens numerous samples within 1.5 h and uses <100 μg of material. The approach is robust for both soluble and detergent-solubilized membrane proteins. PMID:24091556

  13. ZnO nanoparticles assist the refolding of denatured green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Pandurangan, Muthuraman; Zamany, Ahmad Jawid; Kim, Doo Hwan

    2016-04-01

    Proteins are essential for cellular and biological processes. Proteins are synthesized and fold into the native structure to become active. The inability of a protein molecule to remain in its native conformation is called as protein misfolding, and this is due to several environmental factors. Protein misfolding and aggregation handle several human diseases. Protein misfolding is believed to be one of the causes of several disorders such as cancer, degenerative diseases, and metabolic pathologies. The zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticle was significantly promoted refolding of thermally denatured green fluorescent protein (GFP). In the present study, ZnO nanoparticles interaction with GFP was investigated by ultraviolet-visible spectrophotometer, fluorescence spectrophotometer, and dynamic light scattering. Results suggest that the ZnO nanoparticles significantly assist the refolding of denatured GFP. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:26566762

  14. Using search engine technology for protein function prediction.

    PubMed

    Chen, Ziyang; Cai, Zhao; Li, Min; Liu, Binbin

    2011-01-01

    Prediction of protein function is one of the most challenging problems in the post-genomic era. In this paper, we propose a novel algorithm Improved ProteinRank (IPR) for protein function prediction, which is based on the search engine technology and the preferential attachment criteria. In addition, an improved algorithm IPRW is developed from IPR to be used in the weighted protein?protein interaction (PPI) network. The proposed algorithms IPR and IPRW are applied to the PPI network of S.cerevisiae. The experimental results show that both IPR and IPRW outweigh the previous methods for the prediction of protein functions. PMID:21441099

  15. Directed evolution of bright mutants of an oxygen-independent flavin-binding fluorescent protein from Pseudomonas putida

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Fluorescent reporter proteins have revolutionized our understanding of cellular bioprocesses by enabling live cell imaging with exquisite spatio-temporal resolution. Existing fluorescent proteins are predominantly based on the green fluorescent protein (GFP) and related analogs. However, GFP-family proteins strictly require molecular oxygen for maturation of fluorescence, which precludes their application for investigating biological processes in low-oxygen environments. A new class of oxygen-independent fluorescent reporter proteins was recently reported based on flavin-binding photosensors from Bacillus subtilis and Pseudomonas putida. However, flavin-binding fluorescent proteins show very limited brightness, which restricts their utility as biological imaging probes. Results In this work, we report the discovery of bright mutants of a flavin-binding fluorescent protein from P. putida using directed evolution by site saturation mutagenesis. We discovered two mutations at a chromophore-proximal amino acid (F37S and F37T) that confer a twofold enhancement in brightness relative to the wild type fluorescent protein through improvements in quantum yield and holoprotein fraction. In addition, we observed that substitution with other aromatic amino acids at this residue (F37Y and F37W) severely diminishes fluorescence emission. Therefore, we identify F37 as a key amino acid residue in determining fluorescence. Conclusions To increase the scope and utility of flavin-binding fluorescent proteins as practical fluorescent reporters, there is a strong need for improved variants of the wild type protein. Our work reports on the application of site saturation mutagenesis to isolate brighter variants of a flavin-binding fluorescent protein, which is a first-of-its-kind approach. Overall, we anticipate that the improved variants will find pervasive use as fluorescent reporters for biological studies in low-oxygen environments. PMID:23095243

  16. Steady-State Fluorescence Anisotropy to Investigate Flavonoids Binding to Proteins

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ingersoll, Christine M.; Strollo, Christen M.

    2007-01-01

    The steady-state fluorescence anisotropy is employed to study the binding of protein of a model protein, human serum albumin, to a commonly used flavonoid, quercetin. The experiment describes the thermodynamics, as well as the biochemical interactions of such binding effectively.

  17. [Establishment of goat limbal stem cell strain expressing Venus fluorescent protein and construction of limbal epithelial sheets].

    PubMed

    Yin, Jiqing; Liu, Wenqiang; Liu, Chao; Zhao, Guimin; Zhang, Yihua; Liu, Weishuai; Hua, Jinlian; Dou, Zhongying; Lei, Anmin

    2010-12-01

    The integrity and transparency of cornea plays a key role in vision. Limbal Stem Cells (LSCs) are precursors of cornea, which are responsible for self-renewal and replenishing corneal epithelium. Though it is successful to cell replacement therapy for impairing ocular surface by Limbal Stem Cell Transplantation (LSCT), the mechanism of renew is unclear after LSCT. To real time follow-up the migration and differentiation of corneal transplanted epithelial cells after transplanting, we transfected venus (a fluorescent protein gene) into goat LSCs, selected with G418 and established a stable transfected cell line, named GLSC-V. These cells showed green fluorescence, and which could maintain for at least 3 months. GLSC-V also were positive for anti-P63 and anti-Integrinbeta1 antibody by immunofluorescent staining. We founded neither GLSC-V nor GLSCs expressed keratin3 (k3) and keratinl2 (k12). However, GLSC-V had higher levels in expression of p63, pcna and venus compared with GLSCs. Further, we cultivated the cells on denude amniotic membrane to construct tissue engineered fluorescent corneal epithelial sheets. Histology and HE staining showed that the constructed fluorescent corneal epithelial sheets consisted of 5-6 layers of epithelium. Only the lowest basal cells of fluorescent corneal epithelial sheets expressed P63 analyzed by immunofluorescence, but not superficial epithelial cells. These results showed that our constructed fluorescent corneal epithelial sheets were similar to the normal corneal epithelium in structure and morphology. This demonstrated that they could be transplanted for patents with corneal impair, also may provide a foundation for the study on the mechanisms of corneal epithelial cell regeneration after LSCT. PMID:21387825

  18. Protein induced fluorescence enhancement (PIFE) for probing protein–nucleic acid interactions

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Helen

    2014-01-01

    Single molecule studies of protein–nucleic acid interactions shed light on molecular mechanisms and kinetics involved in protein binding, translocation, and unwinding of DNA and RNA substrates. In this review, we provide an overview of a single molecule fluorescence method, termed “protein induced fluorescence enhancement” (PIFE). Unlike FRET where two dyes are required, PIFE employs a single dye attached to DNA or RNA to which an unlabeled protein is applied. We discuss both ensemble and single molecule studies in which PIFE was utilized. PMID:24056732

  19. A chimera of green fluorescent protein with single chain variable fragment antibody against ginsenosides for fluorescence-linked immunosorbent assay.

    PubMed

    Sakamoto, Seiichi; Tanizaki, Yusuke; Pongkitwitoon, Benyakan; Tanaka, Hiroyuki; Morimoto, Satoshi

    2011-05-01

    A chimera of green fluorescent protein extracted from Aequorea coerulescens (AcGFP), a mutant that has been codon optimized for mammalian expression, with single-chain variable fragment (scFv) antibody against ginsenoside Re (GRe-scFv), named fluobody, has been successfully expressed in Escherichia coli (E. coli) to develop simple, speedy, and sensitive fluorescence-linked immunosorbent assay (FLISA). Two chimera proteins were constructed to contain GRe-scFv at the C-terminus of AcGFP (C-fluobody) and at the N-terminus of AcGFP (N-fluobody). These fluobodies were then purified by ion metal affinity chromatography and refolded by stepwise dialysis. The characterization of both fluobodies revealed that C-fluobody was found to be appropriate probe for FLISA as compare with N-fluobody. Furthermore, improvement of limit of detection (LOD) was observed in FLISA using C-fluobody (10 ng/mL) due to its strong fluorescence intensity of AcGFP compared with conventional enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using parental monoclonal antibody against ginsenoside Re (G-Re), MAb-4G10 (100 ng/mL). Since some steps required in ELISA can be avoided in this present FLISA, speedy and sensitive immunoassay also could be performed using fluobody instead of monoclonal antibody and scFv. PMID:21277981

  20. Anomalous Negative Fluorescence Anisotropy in Yellow Fluorescent Protein (YFP 10C): Quantitative Analysis of FRET in YFP Dimers

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Xinghua; Basran, Jaswir; Seward, Harriet E.; Childs, William; Bagshaw, Clive R.; Boxer, Steven G.

    2008-01-01

    YFP is widely used as a genetically-encoded fluorescent marker in biology. In the course of a comprehensive study of this protein, we observed an unusual, negative fluorescence anisotropy at pH 6.0 (McAnaney, T. B., Zeng, W., Doe, C. F. E., Bhanji, N., Wakelin, S., Pearson, D. S., Abbyad, P., Shi, X. H., Boxer, S. G., and Bagshaw, C. R. (2005), Biochemistry 44, 5510–5524). Here we report that the fluorescence anisotropy of YFP 10C depends on protein concentration in the low micromolar range that was not expected. We propose that the negative anisotropy is a result of unidirectional Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) in a dimer of YFP, with the donor chromophore in the neutral form and the acceptor chromophore in the anionic form. This unusual mechanism is supported by studies of a monomeric YFP (A206K YFP) and transient-absorption spectroscopy of YFP 10C. A detailed analysis of the chromophore transition dipole moment direction is presented. The anisotropy and rate constant of this energy transfer are consistent with values produced by an analysis of the dimer structure observed in crystals. PMID:18027983

  1. Drug/protein interactions studied by time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gustavsson, Thomas; Markovitsi, Dimitra; Vayá, Ignacio; Bonancía, Paula; Jiménez, M. C.; Miranda, Miguel A.

    2014-09-01

    We report here on a recent time-resolved fluorescence study [1] of the interaction between flurbiprofen (FBP), a chiral non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, and human serum albumin (HSA), the main transport protein in the human body. We compare the results obtained for the drug-protein complex with those of various covalently linked flurbiprofentryptophan dyads having well-defined geometries. In all cases stereoselective dynamic fluorescence quenching is observed, varying greatly from one system to another. In addition, the fluorescence anisotropy decays also display a clear stereoselectivity. For the drug-protein complexes, this can be interpreted in terms of the protein microenvironment playing a significant role in the conformational relaxation of FBP, which is more restricted in the case of the (R)- enantiomer.

  2. Two-photon excited fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy for FRET study on protein interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qu, Junle; Lin, Ziyang; Liu, Lixin; Guo, Xuan; Chen, Danni; Niu, Hanben

    2005-01-01

    Two-photon excited fluorescence lifetime imaging (2P-FLIM) provides a more direct and precise approach to fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET), which allows studying the dynamic behavior of protein-protein interactions in living cells. In this paper, we describe the combination of a Leica TCS SP2 laser scanning microscope and a time-correlated single photon counting (TCSPC) lifetime imaging module developed by Becker & Hickl for two-photon excited fluorescence lifetime imaging. This 2P-FLIM system was used for FRET study on the interaction of heat shock protein hsp27 with p38 MAP kinase in the single living cell. Results show that the reduction in donor (CFP) lifetime in the presence of acceptor (YFP) reveals interactions between the two proteins.

  3. Photo-convertible fluorescent proteins as tools for fresh insights on subcellular interactions in plants.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, N; Jaipargas, E-A; Wozny, M R; Barton, K A; Mathur, N; Delfosse, K; Mathur, J

    2016-08-01

    Optical highlighters comprise photo-activatable, photo-switchable and photo-convertible fluorescent proteins and are relatively recent additions to the toolbox utilized for live cell imaging research. Here, we provide an overview of four photo-convertible fluorescent proteins (pcFP) that are being used in plant cell research: Eos, Kaede, Maple and Dendra2. Each of these proteins has a significant advantage over other optical highlighters since their green fluorescent nonconverted forms and red fluorescent converted forms are generally clearly visible at expression levels that do not appear to interfere with subcellular dynamics and plant development. These proteins have become increasingly useful for understanding the role of transient and sustained interactions between similar organelles. Tracking of single organelles after green-to-red conversion has provided novel insights on plastids and their stroma-filled extensions and on the formation of mega-mitochondria. Similarly colour recovery after photo-conversion has permitted the estimation of nuclear endo-reduplication events and is being developed further to image protein trafficking within the lumen of the endoplasmic reticulum. We have also applied photo-convertible proteins to create colour-differentiation between similar cell types to follow their development. Both the green and red fluorescent forms of these proteins are compatible with other commonly used single coloured FPs. This has allowed us to develop simultaneous visualization schemes for up to five types of organelles and investigate organelle interactivity. The advantages and caveats associated with the use of photo-convertible fluorescent proteins are discussed. PMID:26820914

  4. Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Analysis of Protein-Protein Interactions and Assessment of Subcellular Localization in Live Cells.

    PubMed

    Pratt, Evan P S; Owens, Jake L; Hockerman, Gregory H; Hu, Chang-Deng

    2016-01-01

    Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) is a fluorescence imaging technique used to visualize protein-protein interactions (PPIs) in live cells and animals. One unique application of BiFC is to reveal subcellular localization of PPIs. The superior signal-to-noise ratio of BiFC in comparison with fluorescence resonance energy transfer or bioluminescence resonance energy transfer enables its wide applications. Here, we describe how confocal microscopy can be used to detect and quantify PPIs and their subcellular localization. We use basic leucine zipper transcription factor proteins as an example to provide a step-by-step BiFC protocol using a Nikon A1 confocal microscope and NIS-Elements imaging software. The protocol given below can be readily adapted for use with other confocal microscopes or imaging software. PMID:27515079

  5. Whole-body multicolor spectrally resolved fluorescence imaging for development of target-specific optical contrast agents using genetically engineered probes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kobayashi, Hisataka; Hama, Yukihiro; Koyama, Yoshinori; Barrett, Tristan; Urano, Yasuteru; Choyke, Peter L.

    2007-02-01

    Target-specific contrast agents are being developed for the molecular imaging of cancer. Optically detectable target-specific agents are promising for clinical applications because of their high sensitivity and specificity. Pre clinical testing is needed, however, to validate the actual sensitivity and specificity of these agents in animal models, and involves both conventional histology and immunohistochemistry, which requires large numbers of animals and samples with costly handling. However, a superior validation tool takes advantage of genetic engineering technology whereby cell lines are transfected with genes that induce the target cell to produce fluorescent proteins with characteristic emission spectra thus, identifying them as cancer cells. Multicolor fluorescence imaging of these genetically engineered probes can provide rapid validation of newly developed exogenous probes that fluoresce at different wavelengths. For example, the plasmid containing the gene encoding red fluorescent protein (RFP) was transfected into cell lines previously developed to either express or not-express specific cell surface receptors. Various antibody-based or receptor ligand-based optical contrast agents with either green or near infrared fluorophores were developed to concurrently target and validate cancer cells and their positive and negative controls, such as β-D-galactose receptor, HER1 and HER2 in a single animal/organ. Spectrally resolved fluorescence multicolor imaging was used to detect separate fluorescent emission spectra from the exogenous agents and RFP. Therefore, using this in vivo imaging technique, we were able to demonstrate the sensitivity and specificity of the target-specific optical contrast agents, thus reducing the number of animals needed to conduct these experiments.

  6. Measuring cooperative Rev protein-protein interactions on Rev responsive RNA by fluorescence resonance energy transfer

    PubMed Central

    Vercruysse, Thomas; Pawar, Sonalika; De Borggraeve, Wim; Pardon, Els; Pavlakis, George N; Pannecouque, Christophe; Steyaert, Jan; Balzarini, Jan

    2011-01-01

    The export of viral RNA from the nucleus to the cytoplasm of the cellular host is a crucial step in the life cycle of HIV-1 that is mediated by the viral Rev protein. One aspect of the Rev function, its multimerization, is still unexplored as a target for antiviral therapy. This is partly due to the lack of a fast and solid system to measure Rev multimerization. We have developed a high throughput in vitro Rev multimerization assay based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) in which real-time Rev-Rev interactions can be measured both in the absence and the presence of Rev specific RRE RNA. Well-characterized Rev multimerization deficient mutants showed reduced FRET as well as unlabeled Rev molecules were able to inhibit the FRET signal demonstrating the specificity of the assay. Upon multimerization along RRE RNA the FRET signal significantly increased but dropped again at equimolar Rev/RRE ratios suggesting that in this condition most Rev molecules are bound as monomers to the RRE. Furthermore, using this assay, we demonstrate that a previously selected llama heavy-chain only antibody was shown to not only prevent the development of Rev multimers but also disassemble the already formed complexes confirming the dynamic nature of the Rev-Rev interactions. The in vitro FRET based multimerization assay facilitates the further study of the basic mechanism of cooperative Rev multimerization along the RRE and is also widely applicable to study the assembly of other functional complexes involving protein homo-multimerization or cooperative protein-protein interactions on RNA or DNA. PMID:21358282

  7. Clinical translation of controlled protein delivery systems for tissue engineering

    PubMed Central

    Spiller, Kara L.; Vunjak-Novakovic, Gordana

    2013-01-01

    Strategies that utilize controlled release of drugs and proteins for tissue engineering have enormous potential to regenerate damaged organs and tissues. The multiple advantages of controlled release strategies merit overcoming the significant challenges to translation, including high costs and long, difficult regulatory pathways. This review highlights the potential of controlled release of proteins for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. We specifically discuss treatment modalities that have reached preclinical and clinical trials, with emphasis on controlled release systems for bone tissue engineering, the most advanced application with several products already in clinic. Possible strategies to address translational and regulatory concerns are also discussed. PMID:25787736

  8. Dipolar relaxation within the protein matrix of the green fluorescent protein: a red edge excitation shift study.

    PubMed

    Haldar, Sourav; Chattopadhyay, Amitabha

    2007-12-27

    The fluorophore in green fluorescent protein (GFP) is localized in a highly constrained environment, protected from the bulk solvent by the barrel-shaped protein matrix. We have used the wavelength-selective fluorescence approach (red edge excitation shift, REES) to monitor solvent (environment) dynamics around the fluorophore in enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) under various conditions. Our results show that EGFP displays REES in buffer and glycerol, i.e., the fluorescence emission maxima exhibit a progressive shift toward the red edge, as the excitation wavelength is shifted toward the red edge of the absorption spectrum. Interestingly, EGFP displays REES when incorporated in reverse micelles of sodium bis(2-ethylhexyl)sulfosuccinate (AOT), independent of the hydration state. We interpret the observed REES to the constrained environment experienced by the EGFP fluorophore in the rigid protein matrix, rather than to the dynamics of the bulk solvent. These results are supported by the temperature dependence of REES and characteristic wavelength-dependent changes in fluorescence anisotropy. PMID:18052368

  9. Manipulation of cellular light from green fluorescent protein by a femtosecond laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Hao; Li, Shiyang; Wang, Shaoyang; Hu, Minglie; Cao, Youjia; Wang, Chingyue

    2012-10-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) is one of the most widely studied and exploited proteins in biochemistry and cell biology. It emits fluorescence following optical excitation, which is usually provided by a laser. Here, we report that fluorescence from enhanced GFP can be `turned off' by exposing cells to laser light. A short flash of femtosecond laser light is shown to deplete calcium in the endoplasmic reticulum of cells. Calcium-release-activated calcium channels are then activated by stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1). The rise in intracellular Ca2+ depolarizes mitochondria and increases the leakage of reactive oxygen species, which then permanently bleach the GFP. This controllable optical scheme for reactive oxygen species generation can also be used to modulate the photoconversion of GFP fluorescence from green to red emission and provide a mechanism for influencing cellular molecular dynamics.

  10. Mass spectrometric imaging of red fluorescent protein in breast tumor xenografts.

    PubMed

    Chughtai, Kamila; Jiang, Lu; Post, Harm; Winnard, Paul T; Greenwood, Tiffany R; Raman, Venu; Bhujwalla, Zaver M; Heeren, Ron M A; Glunde, Kristine

    2013-05-01

    Mass spectrometric imaging (MSI) in combination with electrospray mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) is a powerful technique for visualization and identification of a variety of different biomolecules directly from thin tissue sections. As commonly used tools for molecular reporting, fluorescent proteins are molecular reporter tools that have enabled the elucidation of a multitude of biological pathways and processes. To combine these two approaches, we have performed targeted MS analysis and MALDI-MSI visualization of a tandem dimer (td)Tomato red fluorescent protein, which was expressed exclusively in the hypoxic regions of a breast tumor xenograft model. For the first time, a fluorescent protein has been visualized by both optical microscopy and MALDI-MSI. Visualization of tdTomato by MALDI-MSI directly from breast tumor tissue sections will allow us to simultaneously detect and subsequently identify novel molecules present in hypoxic regions of the tumor. MS and MALDI-MSI of fluorescent proteins, as exemplified in our study, is useful for studies in which the advantages of MS and MSI will benefit from the combination with molecular approaches that use fluorescent proteins as reporters. PMID:23184411

  11. Aptamer-mediated turn-on fluorescence assay for prion protein based on guanine quenched fluophor.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Sai Jin; Hu, Ping Ping; Li, Yuan Fang; Huang, Cheng Zhi; Huang, Tao; Xiao, Geng Fu

    2009-10-15

    An aptamer-participated haprin structure was designed by employing cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) as a model protein, and thus an aptamer-mediated turn-on fluorescence assay for proteins was developed in this contribution. The designed aptamer-participated haprin structure consists of three segments. Namely, an aptamer sequence located in the loop, three guanine bases at 3'-terminal, and a fluophor modified at 5'-terminal. It was found that the guanine bases at the 3'-terminal could quench the fluorescence of the fluophor such as tetramethyl-6-carboxyrhodamine (TAMRA) at the 5'-terminal about 76.6% via electron transfer if the guanine bases are close enough to the fluophor, and the quenched fluorescence could get restored when the target protein is present since the interaction, which could be confirmed by measuring fluorescence lifetime, between TAMRA-aptamer and the target protein forces the guanines away from TAMRA so that TAMRA-modified aptamer changes into turn-on state. A linear relationship was then constructed between the turn-on fluorescence intensity and the concentration of PrP(C) in the range from 1.1 to 44.7 microg/mL with a limit of detection of 0.3 microg/mL (3sigma). PMID:19635360

  12. Protein Engineering for Cardiovascular Therapeutics: Untapped Potential for Cardiac Repair

    PubMed Central

    Jay, Steven M.; Lee, Richard T.

    2013-01-01

    Numerous new and innovative approaches for repairing damaged myocardium are currently under investigation, with several encouraging results. In addition to the progression of stem cell-based approaches and gene therapy/silencing methods, evidence continues to emerge that protein therapeutics may be used to directly promote cardiac repair and even regeneration. However, proteins are often limited in their therapeutic potential by short local half-lives and insufficient bioavailability and/or bioactivity, and many academic laboratories studying cardiovascular diseases are more comfortable with molecular and cellular biology compared with protein biochemistry. Protein engineering has been employed broadly to overcome weaknesses traditionally associated with protein therapeutics and has the potential to specifically enhance the efficacy of molecules for cardiac repair. Yet protein engineering as a strategy has not yet been employed in the development of cardiovascular therapeutics to the degree that it has in other fields. In this review, we discuss the role of engineered proteins in cardiovascular therapies to date. Further, we address the promise of applying emerging protein engineering technologies to cardiovascular medicine and the barriers that must be overcome to enable the ultimate success of this approach. PMID:24030023

  13. Expression Screening of Integral Membrane Proteins by Fusion to Fluorescent Reporters.

    PubMed

    Bird, Louise E; Nettleship, Joanne E; Järvinen, Valtteri; Rada, Heather; Verma, Anil; Owens, Raymond J

    2016-01-01

    The production of recombinant integral membrane proteins for structural and functional studies remains technically challenging due to their relatively low levels of expression. To address this problem, screening strategies have been developed to identify the optimal membrane sequence and expression host for protein production. A common approach is to genetically fuse the membrane protein to a fluorescent reporter, typically Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) enabling expression levels, localization and detergent solubilisation to be assessed. Initially developed for screening the heterologous expression of bacterial membrane proteins in Escherichia coli, the method has been extended to eukaryotic hosts, including insect and mammalian cells. Overall, GFP-based expression screening has made a major impact on the number of membrane protein structures that have been determined in the last few years. PMID:27553231

  14. Red fluorescent proteins for imaging Zymoseptoria tritici during invasion of wheat.

    PubMed

    Schuster, M; Kilaru, S; Guo, M; Sommerauer, M; Lin, C; Steinberg, G

    2015-06-01

    The use of fluorescent proteins (FPs) in plant pathogenic fungi provides valuable insight into their intracellular dynamics, cell organization and invasion mechanisms. Compared with green-fluorescent proteins, their red-fluorescent "cousins" show generally lower fluorescent signal intensity and increased photo-bleaching. However, the combined usage of red and green fluorescent proteins allows powerful insight in co-localization studies. Efficient signal detection requires a bright red-fluorescent protein (RFP), combined with a suitable corresponding filter set. We provide a set of four vectors, suitable for yeast recombination-based cloning that carries mRFP, TagRFP, mCherry and tdTomato. These vectors confer carboxin resistance after targeted single-copy integration into the sdi1 locus of Zymoseptoria tritici. Expression of the RFPs does not affect virulence of this wheat pathogen. We tested all four RFPs in combination with four epi-fluorescence filter sets and in confocal laser scanning microscopy, both in and ex planta. Our data reveal that mCherry is the RFP of choice for investigation in Z. tritici, showing highest signal intensity in epi-fluorescence, when used with a Cy3 filter set, and laser scanning confocal microscopy. However, mCherry bleached significantly faster than mRFP, which favors this red tag in long-term observation experiments. Finally, we used dual-color imaging of eGFP and mCherry expressing wild-type strains in planta and show that pycnidia are formed by single strains. This demonstrates the strength of this method in tracking the course of Z. tritici infection in wheat. PMID:26092800

  15. Improving recombinant protein production in the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii chloroplast using vivid Verde Fluorescent Protein as a reporter.

    PubMed

    Braun-Galleani, Stephanie; Baganz, Frank; Purton, Saul

    2015-08-01

    Microalgae have potential as platforms for the synthesis of high-value recombinant proteins due to their many beneficial attributes including ease of cultivation, lack of pathogenic agents, and low-cost downstream processing. However, current recombinant protein levels are low compared to other microbial platforms and stable insertion of transgenes is available in only a few microalgal species. We have explored different strategies aimed at increasing growth rate and recombinant protein production in the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii chloroplast. A novel fluorescent protein (vivid Verde Fluorescent Protein, VFP) was expressed under the control of the native atpA promoter/5'UTR element. VFP levels were detected by western blotting, with increased protein levels observed when co-expressed with a gene encoding the Escherichia coli Spy chaperone. We used these transformant lines to study the effect of temperature, light and media on recombinant protein production and cell growth. VFP levels and fluorescence, assessed by flow cytometry, allowed a determination of improved cultivation conditions as 30°C under mixotrophic mode. These conditions were tested for the accumulation of an antimicrobial endolysin (Cpl-1) of potential commercial interest, observing that the outcome obtained for VFP could not be easily replicated for Cpl-1. This study suggests that recombinant protein expression is product-specific and needs to be optimized individually. PMID:26098300

  16. Improving recombinant protein production in the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii chloroplast using vivid Verde Fluorescent Protein as a reporter

    PubMed Central

    Baganz, Frank; Purton, Saul

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Microalgae have potential as platforms for the synthesis of high‐value recombinant proteins due to their many beneficial attributes including ease of cultivation, lack of pathogenic agents, and low‐cost downstream processing. However, current recombinant protein levels are low compared to other microbial platforms and stable insertion of transgenes is available in only a few microalgal species. We have explored different strategies aimed at increasing growth rate and recombinant protein production in the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii chloroplast. A novel fluorescent protein (vivid Verde Fluorescent Protein, VFP) was expressed under the control of the native atpA promoter/5'UTR element. VFP levels were detected by western blotting, with increased protein levels observed when co‐expressed with a gene encoding the Escherichia coli Spy chaperone. We used these transformant lines to study the effect of temperature, light and media on recombinant protein production and cell growth. VFP levels and fluorescence, assessed by flow cytometry, allowed a determination of improved cultivation conditions as 30°C under mixotrophic mode. These conditions were tested for the accumulation of an antimicrobial endolysin (Cpl‐1) of potential commercial interest, observing that the outcome obtained for VFP could not be easily replicated for Cpl‐1. This study suggests that recombinant protein expression is product‐specific and needs to be optimized individually. PMID:26098300

  17. Protein Engineering by Combined Computational and In Vitro Evolution Approaches.

    PubMed

    Rosenfeld, Lior; Heyne, Michael; Shifman, Julia M; Papo, Niv

    2016-05-01

    Two alternative strategies are commonly used to study protein-protein interactions (PPIs) and to engineer protein-based inhibitors. In one approach, binders are selected experimentally from combinatorial libraries of protein mutants that are displayed on a cell surface. In the other approach, computational modeling is used to explore an astronomically large number of protein sequences to select a small number of sequences for experimental testing. While both approaches have some limitations, their combination produces superior results in various protein engineering applications. Such applications include the design of novel binders and inhibitors, the enhancement of affinity and specificity, and the mapping of binding epitopes. The combination of these approaches also aids in the understanding of the specificity profiles of various PPIs. PMID:27061494

  18. Engineering Bioluminescent Proteins: Expanding their Analytical Potential

    PubMed Central

    Rowe, Laura; Dikici, Emre; Daunert, Sylvia

    2009-01-01

    Synopsis Bioluminescence has been observed in nature since the dawn of time, but now, scientists are harnessing it for analytical applications. Laura Rowe, Emre Dikici, and Sylvia Daunert of the University of Kentucky describe the origins of bioluminescent proteins and explore their uses in the modern chemistry laboratory. The cover features spectra of bioluminescent light superimposed on an image of jellyfish, which are a common source of bioluminescent proteins. Images courtesy of Emre Dikici and Shutterstock. PMID:19725502

  19. Protein engineering by highly parallel screening of computationally designed variants.

    PubMed

    Sun, Mark G F; Seo, Moon-Hyeong; Nim, Satra; Corbi-Verge, Carles; Kim, Philip M

    2016-07-01

    Current combinatorial selection strategies for protein engineering have been successful at generating binders against a range of targets; however, the combinatorial nature of the libraries and their vast undersampling of sequence space inherently limit these methods due to the difficulty in finely controlling protein properties of the engineered region. Meanwhile, great advances in computational protein design that can address these issues have largely been underutilized. We describe an integrated approach that computationally designs thousands of individual protein binders for high-throughput synthesis and selection to engineer high-affinity binders. We show that a computationally designed library enriches for tight-binding variants by many orders of magnitude as compared to conventional randomization strategies. We thus demonstrate the feasibility of our approach in a proof-of-concept study and successfully obtain low-nanomolar binders using in vitro and in vivo selection systems. PMID:27453948

  20. Protein engineering by highly parallel screening of computationally designed variants

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Mark G. F.; Seo, Moon-Hyeong; Nim, Satra; Corbi-Verge, Carles; Kim, Philip M.

    2016-01-01

    Current combinatorial selection strategies for protein engineering have been successful at generating binders against a range of targets; however, the combinatorial nature of the libraries and their vast undersampling of sequence space inherently limit these methods due to the difficulty in finely controlling protein properties of the engineered region. Meanwhile, great advances in computational protein design that can address these issues have largely been underutilized. We describe an integrated approach that computationally designs thousands of individual protein binders for high-throughput synthesis and selection to engineer high-affinity binders. We show that a computationally designed library enriches for tight-binding variants by many orders of magnitude as compared to conventional randomization strategies. We thus demonstrate the feasibility of our approach in a proof-of-concept study and successfully obtain low-nanomolar binders using in vitro and in vivo selection systems. PMID:27453948

  1. Mechanistic Studies of the Genetically Encoded Fluorescent Protein Voltage Probe ArcLight

    PubMed Central

    Han, Zhou; Jin, Lei; Chen, Fuyi; Loturco, Joseph J.; Cohen, Lawrence B.; Bondar, Alexey; Lazar, Josef; Pieribone, Vincent A.

    2014-01-01

    ArcLight, a genetically encoded fluorescent protein voltage probe with a large ΔF/ΔV, is a fusion between the voltage sensing domain of the Ciona instestinalis voltage sensitive phosphatase and super ecliptic pHluorin carrying a single mutation (A227D in the fluorescent protein). Without this mutation the probe produces only a very small change in fluorescence in response to voltage deflections (∼1%). The large signal afforded by this mutation allows optical detection of action potentials and sub-threshold electrical events in single-trials in vitro and in vivo. However, it is unclear how this single mutation produces a probe with such a large modulation of its fluorescence output with changes in membrane potential. In this study, we identified which residues in super ecliptic pHluorin (vs eGFP) are critical for the ArcLight response, as a similarly constructed probe based on eGFP also exhibits large response amplitude if it carries these critical residues. We found that D147 is responsible for determining the pH sensitivity of the fluorescent protein used in these probes but by itself does not result in a voltage probe with a large signal. We also provide evidence that the voltage dependent signal of ArcLight is not simply sensing environmental pH changes. A two-photon polarization microscopy study showed that ArcLight's response to changes in membrane potential includes a reorientation of the super ecliptic pHluorin. We also explored different changes including modification of linker length, deletion of non-essential amino acids in the super ecliptic pHluorin, adding a farnesylation site, using tandem fluorescent proteins and other pH sensitive fluorescent proteins. PMID:25419571

  2. Application of portable in situ UV fluorescence sensors in natural and engineered aquatic systems.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fox, Bethany; Rushworth, Cathy; Atrridge, John

    2016-04-01

    Natural organic matter (NOM) is ubiquitous throughout aquatic systems. This heterogeneous mixture of organic matter is central for aquatic ecosystems and, both local and global, biogeochemical cycling. Improvements in technology and data analysis has allowed for advances in the understanding and characterisation of aquatic organic matter. However, much of the technological expansions have focussed on benchtop instruments. In recent years, there has been interest in the continued development of portable in situ sensors for monitoring NOM characteristics within a wide range of applications, spanning both natural and engineered systems. The UviLux (Chelsea Technologies Group Ltd., UK) is an in situ portable UV fluorescence sensor that can be configured to monitor a range of NOM in aquatic systems, as well as anthropogenic inputs such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and optical brighteners. Here we will focus on the use of the Tryptophan and CDOM UviLux sensors across a variety of applications in both natural systems, such as rivers and leachate into groundwater, and engineered systems, including drinking water and waste water treatment. Recent work has focused on standardising the fluorescence output across the UviLux range of sensors, reporting data in quinine sulphate units (QSU), which enables the output from two different fluorometers to be directly compared both to each other, and to bench-top data. A key advantage of deploying multiple sensors is the ability to fingerprint the fluorescence, by providing, for example, a Tryptophan/CDOM ratio. From the data collected, the ratio of the different fluorescence regions has been shown to provide more robust in situ data and help identify true temporal variations and patterns across multiple applications and sampling locations.

  3. Osteoconductivity of Complex Biomaterials Assayed by Fluorescent-Engineered Osteoblast-like Cells.

    PubMed

    Manfrini, Marco; Mazzoni, Elisa; Barbanti-Brodano, Giovanni; Nocini, Pierfrancesco; D'agostino, Antonio; Trombelli, Leonardo; Tognon, Mauro

    2015-04-01

    Biomaterials employed for the bone regeneration can be assayed for specific features such as osteoconductivity and gene expression. In this study, the composite HA/collagen/chondroitin-sulfate biomaterial was investigated using an engineered human cell line, named Saos-eGFP. This cell line, a green fluorescent engineered human osteoblast-like cell, was employed as a cellular model for the in vitro study of biomaterial characteristics. The cytotoxicity was indirectly evaluated by fluorescence detection, osteoconductivity was assayed both by fluorescence and electron microscope analysis as well as cell morphology, whereas the RT-PCR technique was employed to assay gene expression. Saos-eGFP cells viability detection after 24 and 96 h of incubation showed that biomaterial enables the adhesion and proliferation of seeded cells as well as that of the plastic surface, the control. Fluorescence and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analyses indicated that Saos-eGFP cells were homogeneously distributed on the HA granule surfaces, exhibiting cytoplasmic bridges, and were localized on the collagen-chondroitin sulfate extra-cellular matrix. An expression analysis of specific genes encoding for differentiation markers, showed that biomaterial assayed did not alter the osteogenic pathway of the Saos-eGFP cell line. Our assays confirm the cytocompatibility of this biomaterial, suggesting an osteoconductive capacity mediated by its chemical contents. We showed that the Saos-eGFP cellular model is suitable for in vitro biomaterial assays, and more specifically for assessing osteoconductivity. This result suggests that the cytocompatibility and osteoconductive features of the biomaterial assayed as bone substitute, could have a positive downstream effect on implant osteo-integration. PMID:25388843

  4. Immunocytochemical fluorescent in situ visualization of proteins in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Boutté, Yohann; Grebe, Markus

    2014-01-01

    The understanding of cellular and subcellular functions often relies on the ability to visualize proteins as close as possible to their endogenous locations. A number of immunocytochemical techniques have been developed to detect proteins in situ using specific antibodies raised against proteins of interest. Here, we describe in detail two protocols commonly, successfully employed in Arabidopsis research. The first allows for immunolocalization of proteins in whole-mount Arabidopsis roots without the need for physical sectioning. The second allows for immunolocalization of proteins on semi-thin microtome sections of wax-embedded swamples. This approach is particularly useful when sectioning of Arabidopsis roots or other thicker plant organs is required for immunolocalization. We provide step-by-step protocols with extensive troubleshooting for both the whole-mount and sectioning protocols. Furthermore, critical steps, advantages, and limitations of the two protocols described here are discussed. PMID:24057381

  5. Profile of new green fluorescent protein transgenic Jinhua pigs as an imaging source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawarasaki, Tatsuo; Uchiyama, Kazuhiko; Hirao, Atsushi; Azuma, Sadahiro; Otake, Masayoshi; Shibata, Masatoshi; Tsuchiya, Seiko; Enosawa, Shin; Takeuchi, Koichi; Konno, Kenjiro; Hakamata, Yoji; Yoshino, Hiroyuki; Wakai, Takuya; Ookawara, Shigeo; Tanaka, Hozumi; Kobayashi, Eiji; Murakami, Takashi

    2009-09-01

    Animal imaging sources have become an indispensable material for biological sciences. Specifically, gene-encoded biological probes serve as stable and high-performance tools to visualize cellular fate in living animals. We use a somatic cell cloning technique to create new green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing Jinhua pigs with a miniature body size, and characterized the expression profile in various tissues/organs and ex vivo culture conditions. The born GFP-transgenic pig demonstrate an organ/tissue-dependent expression pattern. Strong GFP expression is observed in the skeletal muscle, pancreas, heart, and kidney. Regarding cellular levels, bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells, hepatocytes, and islet cells of the pancreas also show sufficient expression with the unique pattern. Moreover, the cloned pigs demonstrate normal growth and fertility, and the introduced GFP gene is stably transmitted to pigs in subsequent generations. The new GFP-expressing Jinhua pigs may be used as new cellular/tissue light resources for biological imaging in preclinical research fields such as tissue engineering, experimental regenerative medicine, and transplantation.

  6. Diffusion coefficients and dissociation constants of enhanced green fluorescent protein binding to free standing membranes.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Franziska A; Visco, Ilaria; Petrášek, Zdeněk; Heinemann, Fabian; Schwille, Petra

    2015-12-01

    Recently, a new and versatile assay to determine the partitioning coefficient [Formula: see text] as a measure for the affinity of peripheral membrane proteins for lipid bilayers was presented in the research article entitled, "Introducing a fluorescence-based standard to quantify protein partitioning into membranes" [1]. Here, the well-characterized binding of hexahistidine-tag (His6) to NTA(Ni) was utilized. Complementarily, this data article reports the average diffusion coefficient [Formula: see text] of His6-tagged enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP-His6) and the fluorescent lipid analog ATTO-647N-DOPE in giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) containing different amounts of NTA(Ni) lipids. In addition, dissociation constants [Formula: see text] of the NTA(Ni)/eGFP-His6 system are reported. Further, a conversion between [Formula: see text] and [Formula: see text] is provided. PMID:26587560

  7. Polarization-dependent fluorescence correlation spectroscopy for studying structural properties of proteins in living cell

    PubMed Central

    Oura, Makoto; Yamamoto, Johtaro; Ishikawa, Hideto; Mikuni, Shintaro; Fukushima, Ryousuke; Kinjo, Masataka

    2016-01-01

    Rotational diffusion measurement is predicted as an important method in cell biology because the rotational properties directly reflect molecular interactions and environment in the cell. To prove this concept, polarization-dependent fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (pol-FCS) measurements of purified fluorescent proteins were conducted in viscous solution. With the comparison between the translational and rotational diffusion coefficients obtained from pol-FCS measurements, the hydrodynamic radius of an enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) was estimated as a control measurement. The orientation of oligomer EGFP in living cells was also estimated by pol-FCS and compared with Monte Carlo simulations. The results of this pol-FCS experiment indicate that this method allows an estimation of the molecular orientation using the characteristics of rotational diffusion. Further, it can be applied to analyze the degree of molecular orientation and multimerization or detection of tiny aggregation of aggregate-prone proteins. PMID:27489044

  8. Fluorescent triplet probes for measuring the rotational diffusion of membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, P; Garland, P B

    1982-01-01

    We have previously described a method for measuring the rotational diffusion of membrane proteins by using fluorescent triplet probes [Johnson & Garland (1981) FEBS Lett. 135, 252-256]. We now describe the criteria by which the suitability of such probes may be judged. In general, the greatest sensitivity is achievable with probes where the ratio of the quantum yields for prompt fluorescene (phi f) and triplet formation (phi t) are high, as with Rhodamine (phi f/phi t congruent to 10(3)). However, considerations of heat generation at the sample membrane, of time resolution of fast rotations and of irreversible bleaching of the fluorescent probe also apply. The immediate environment of a probe molecule at a membrane protein must also be important in determining the performance of a given probe. Nevertheless, we describe guidelines for evaluating the likely usefulness of fluorescent triplet probes in measurements of membrane protein rotation. PMID:7103944

  9. Photoacoustic imaging of the near-infrared fluorescent protein iRFP in vivo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krumholz, Arie; Filonov, Grigory S.; Xia, Jun; Yao, Junjie; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Wang, Lihong V.

    2012-02-01

    Genetically encoded probes powerfully and non-invasively target specific tissues, cells, and subcellular locations. iRFP, a novel near-infrared fluorescent protein with low quantum yield whose absorption and fluorescence maxima are located at wavelengths longer than the Q-band of hemoglobin absorption, is ideal for PAT. Here, we report on an in vitro comparison of iRFP with other far-red fluorescent proteins, and its use in imaging a mouse tumor xenograft model. In an in vivo experiment, we stably transfected iRFP into MTLn3 adenocarcinoma cells and injected them into the mammary fat pad of female SCID/NCr mice, then imaged the resulting tumors two and three weeks post injection. The contrast increase from the protein expression was high enough to clearly separate the tumor region from the rest of the animal.

  10. Determination of Dynamics of Plant Plasma Membrane Proteins with Fluorescence Recovery and Raster Image Correlation Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Laňková, Martina; Humpolíčková, Jana; Vosolsobě, Stanislav; Cit, Zdeněk; Lacek, Jozef; Čovan, Martin; Čovanová, Milada; Hof, Martin; Petrášek, Jan

    2016-04-01

    A number of fluorescence microscopy techniques are described to study dynamics of fluorescently labeled proteins, lipids, nucleic acids, and whole organelles. However, for studies of plant plasma membrane (PM) proteins, the number of these techniques is still limited because of the high complexity of processes that determine the dynamics of PM proteins and the existence of cell wall. Here, we report on the usage of raster image correlation spectroscopy (RICS) for studies of integral PM proteins in suspension-cultured tobacco cells and show its potential in comparison with the more widely used fluorescence recovery after photobleaching method. For RICS, a set of microscopy images is obtained by single-photon confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM). Fluorescence fluctuations are subsequently correlated between individual pixels and the information on protein mobility are extracted using a model that considers processes generating the fluctuations such as diffusion and chemical binding reactions. As we show here using an example of two integral PM transporters of the plant hormone auxin, RICS uncovered their distinct short-distance lateral mobility within the PM that is dependent on cytoskeleton and sterol composition of the PM. RICS, which is routinely accessible on modern CLSM instruments, thus represents a valuable approach for studies of dynamics of PM proteins in plants. PMID:27041337

  11. Fluorescent Proteins as Biomarkers and Biosensors: Throwing Color Lights on Molecular and Cellular Processes

    PubMed Central

    Stepanenko, Olesya V.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.; Kuznetsova, Irina M.; Uversky, Vladimir N.; Turoverov, K.K.

    2010-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) from jellyfish Aequorea victoria is the most extensively studied and widely used in cell biology protein. GFP-like proteins constitute a fast growing family as several naturally occurring GFP-like proteins have been discovered and enhanced mutants of Aequorea GFP have been created. These mutants differ from wild-type GFP by conformational stability, quantum yield, spectroscopic properties (positions of absorption and fluorescence spectra) and by photochemical properties. GFP-like proteins are very diverse, as they can be not only green, but also blue, orange-red, far-red, cyan, and yellow. They also can have dual-color fluorescence (e.g., green and red) or be non-fluorescent. Some of them possess kindling property, some are photoactivatable, and some are photoswitchable. This review is an attempt to characterize the main color groups of GFP-like proteins, describe their structure and mechanisms of chromophore formation, systemize data on their conformational stability and summarize the main trends of their utilization as markers and biosensors in cell and molecular biology. PMID:18691124

  12. Tumor redox metabolism correlation with the expression level of red fluorescent protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sha, Shuang; Wang, Anle; Lin, Qiaoya; Zhang, Zhihong

    2015-03-01

    The redox metabolism is variable and complicated with the progress of tumor development. Whether the tumor redox state will affect the exogenous gene expression or not, are still not clear now . To investigate the relationship between tumor endogenous redox state and the exogenous gene expression level, a far red fluorescent protein fRFP was used to monitor tumor cells proliferation and as an exogenous protein expression in tumors. NADH (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) and Fp (flavin protein) are two important coenzymes in the mitochondria respiratory chain, which can be as a standard representation for redox metabolism state. Three tumor subcutaneous models (melanoma, human pancreatic carcinoma and nasopharyngeal carcinoma) were used to observe their redox state and protein expression by our home-made redox scanner. The results showed that the distribution of fRFP fluorescent protein expression in the inner tumor regions are heterogeneous, and the fluorescent intensity of fRFP and the fluorescent intensity of NADH have high correlation. In addition, we also found the linear coefficient in three tumors are different, the value of coefficient is (R2 = 0.966 and R2 = 0.943) in melanoma, (R2 = 0.701 and R2 = 0.942) in human pancreatic carcinoma, and (R2 = 0.994) in nasopharyngeal carcinoma, respectively. From these results, we consider that the exogenous protein expression of fRFP in tumor had some relationship with the tumor redox state of NADH.

  13. An ontology-based search engine for protein-protein interactions

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Keyword matching or ID matching is the most common searching method in a large database of protein-protein interactions. They are purely syntactic methods, and retrieve the records in the database that contain a keyword or ID specified in a query. Such syntactic search methods often retrieve too few search results or no results despite many potential matches present in the database. Results We have developed a new method for representing protein-protein interactions and the Gene Ontology (GO) using modified Gödel numbers. This representation is hidden from users but enables a search engine using the representation to efficiently search protein-protein interactions in a biologically meaningful way. Given a query protein with optional search conditions expressed in one or more GO terms, the search engine finds all the interaction partners of the query protein by unique prime factorization of the modified Gödel numbers representing the query protein and the search conditions. Conclusion Representing the biological relations of proteins and their GO annotations by modified Gödel numbers makes a search engine efficiently find all protein-protein interactions by prime factorization of the numbers. Keyword matching or ID matching search methods often miss the interactions involving a protein that has no explicit annotations matching the search condition, but our search engine retrieves such interactions as well if they satisfy the search condition with a more specific term in the ontology. PMID:20122195

  14. Construction of Cell-based Neurotransmitter Fluorescent Engineered Reporters (CNiFERs) for Optical Detection of Neurotransmitters In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Lacin, Emre; Muller, Arnaud; Fernando, Marian; Kleinfeld, David; Slesinger, Paul A

    2016-01-01

    Cell-based neurotransmitter fluorescent engineered reporters (CNiFERs) provide a new tool for neuroscientists to optically detect the release of neurotransmitters in the brain in vivo. A specific CNiFER is created from a human embryonic kidney cell that stably expresses a specific G protein-coupled receptor, which couples to Gq/11 G proteins, and a FRET-based Ca(2+)-detector, TN-XXL. Activation of the receptor leads to an increase in the FRET signal. CNiFERs have nM sensitivity and a temporal response of seconds because a CNiFER clone utilizes the native receptor for a particular neurotransmitter, e.g., D2R for dopamine. CNiFERs are directly implanted into the brain, enabling them to sense neurotransmitter release with a spatial resolution of less than one hundred µm, making them ideal to measure volume transmission in vivo. CNiFERs can also be used to screen other drugs for potential cross-reactivity in vivo. We recently expanded the family of CNiFERs to include GPCRs that couple to Gi/o G proteins. CNiFERs are available for detecting acetylcholine (ACh), dopamine (DA) and norepinephrine (NE). Given that any GPCR can be used to create a novel CNiFER and that there are approximately 800 GPCRs in the human genome, we describe here the general procedure to design, realize, and test any type of CNiFER. PMID:27214050

  15. Extended Stokes Shift in Fluorescent Proteins: Chromophore–Protein Interactions in a Near-Infrared TagRFP675 Variant

    PubMed Central

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; Malashkevich, Vladimir N.; Morozova, Kateryna S.; Nemkovich, Nicolai A.; Almo, Steven C.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2013-01-01

    Most GFP-like fluorescent proteins exhibit small Stokes shifts (10–45 nm) due to rigidity of the chromophore environment that excludes non-fluorescent relaxation to a ground state. An unusual near-infrared derivative of the red fluorescent protein mKate, named TagRFP675, exhibits the Stokes shift, which is 30 nm extended comparing to that of the parental protein. In physiological conditions, TagRFP675 absorbs at 598 nm and emits at 675 nm that makes it the most red-shifted protein of the GFP-like protein family. In addition, its emission maximum strongly depends on the excitation wavelength. Structures of TagRFP675 revealed the common DsRed-like chromophore, which, however, interacts with the protein matrix via an extensive network of hydrogen bonds capable of large flexibility. Based on the spectroscopic, biochemical, and structural analysis we suggest that the rearrangement of the hydrogen bond interactions between the chromophore and the protein matrix is responsible for the TagRFP675 spectral properties. PMID:23677204

  16. Fluorescence Properties of Labeled Proteins Near Silver Colloid Surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Maliwal, Badri P.; Malicka, Joanna; Gryczynski, Ignacy; Gryczynski, Zygmunt; Lakowicz, Joseph R.

    2009-01-01

    The fluorescence properties of a monolayer of labeled avidin molecules were studied near silver island films. We first adsorbed a monolayer of biotinylated-BSA as a base that was used to capture labeled avidin molecules. For labeled avidin on silver island films, we observed an increase of the fluorescence intensity of between 18 and 80 with one-photon excitation and up to several hundredfold or larger with two-photon excitation. The probes were moderately more photostable in the presence of silver islands. There was also a dramatic decrease in the lifetimes with the amplitude-weighted values decreasing from 7- to 35-fold. The data suggest that these spectral changes are due to both increased rates of excitation near the metallic particles and increases in the rates of radiative decay. Because these silver island surfaces are very heterogeneous, we are hopeful that larger increases in intensity and photostability can be obtained for probes situated at an optimal distance from the ideal island surfaces. PMID:14648768

  17. Fluorescence imaging for a noninvasive in vivo toxicity-test using a transgenic silkworm expressing green fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    Inagaki, Yoshinori; Matsumoto, Yasuhiko; Ishii, Masaki; Uchino, Keiro; Sezutsu, Hideki; Sekimizu, Kazuhisa

    2015-01-01

    In drug development, the toxicity of candidate chemicals must be carefully examined in an animal model. Here we developed a live imaging technique using silkworms for a noninvasive toxicity test applicable for drug screening. Injection of carbon tetrachloride, a tissue-injuring chemical, into transgenic silkworms expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) induced leakage of GFP from the tissues into the hemolymph. The leakage of GFP was suppressed by pre-administration of either cimetidine, a cytochrome P450 inhibitor, or N-acetyl cysteine, a free-radical scavenger. The transgenic silkworm was made transparent by feeding a diet containing chemicals that inhibit uric acid deposition in the epithelial cells. In the transparent silkworms, GFP fluorescence in the fat body could be observed from outside the body. Injection of salicylic acid or iron sulfate, tissue-injuring chemicals, into the transparent silkworms decreased the fluorescence intensity of the GFP in the fat body. These findings suggest that the transparent GFP-expressing silkworm model is useful for evaluating the toxicity of chemicals that induce tissue injury. PMID:26061948

  18. Binding of fluorescent lanthanides to rat liver mitochondrial membranes and calcium ion-binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Mikkelsen, R B; Wallach, D F

    1976-05-21

    (1) Tb3+ binding to mitochondrial membranes can be monitored by enhanced ion fluorescence at 545 nm with excitation at 285 nm. At low protein concentrations (less than 30 mug/ml) no inner filter effects are observed. (2) This binding is localized at the external surface of the inner membrane and is unaffected by inhibitors of respiration or oxidative phosphorylation. (3) A soluble Ca2+ binding protein isolated according to Lehninger, A.L. ((1971) Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 42, 312-317) also binds Tb3+ with enhanced ion fluorescence upon excitation at 285 nm. The excitation spectrum of the isolated protein and of the intact mitochondria are indicative of an aromatic amino acid at the cation binding site. (4) Further characterization of the Tb3+-protein interaction revealed that there is more than one binding site per protein molecule and that these sites are clustered (less than 20 A). Neuraminidase treatment or organic solvent extraction of the protein did not affect fluorescent Tb3+ binding. (5) pH dependency studies of Tb3+ binding to the isolated protein or intact mitochondria demonstrated the importance of an ionizable group of pK greater than 6. At pH less than 7.5 the amount of Tb3+ bound to the isolated protein decreased with increase in pH as monitored by Tb3+ fluorescence. With intact mitochondria the opposite occurred with a large increase in Tb3+ fluorescence at higher pH. This increase was not observed when the mitochondria were preincubated with antimycin A and rotenone. PMID:6061

  19. Fluorescent In Situ Folding Control for Rapid Optimization of Cell-Free Membrane Protein Synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Müller-Lucks, Annika; Bock, Sinja; Wu, Binghua; Beitz, Eric

    2012-01-01

    Cell-free synthesis is an open and powerful tool for high-yield protein production in small reaction volumes predestined for high-throughput structural and functional analysis. Membrane proteins require addition of detergents for solubilization, liposomes, or nanodiscs. Hence, the number of parameters to be tested is significantly higher than with soluble proteins. Optimization is commonly done with respect to protein yield, yet without knowledge of the protein folding status. This approach contains a large inherent risk of ending up with non-functional protein. We show that fluorophore formation in C-terminal fusions with green fluorescent protein (GFP) indicates the folding state of a membrane protein in situ, i.e. within the cell-free reaction mixture, as confirmed by circular dichroism (CD), proteoliposome reconstitution and functional assays. Quantification of protein yield and in-gel fluorescence intensity imply suitability of the method for membrane proteins of bacterial, protozoan, plant, and mammalian origin, representing vacuolar and plasma membrane localization, as well as intra- and extracellular positioning of the C-terminus. We conclude that GFP-fusions provide an extension to cell-free protein synthesis systems eliminating the need for experimental folding control and, thus, enabling rapid optimization towards membrane protein quality. PMID:22848743

  20. Genetically engineered luminescent proteins in biosensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, Laura; Ensor, Mark; Scott, Daniel; Deo, Sapna; Daunert, Sylvia

    2006-02-01

    Luminescent proteins originally isolated from marine or terrestrial organisms have played a key role in the development of several biosensing systems. These proteins have been used in a variety of applications including, immunoassays, binding assays, cell-based sensing, high throughput screening, optical imaging, etc. Among the luminescent proteins isolated, the bioluminescent protein aequorin has been one of the proteins at the forefront in terms of its use in a vast number of biosensing systems. In our laboratory, we have employed aequorin as a label in the development of highly sensitive assays through chemical and genetic modifications from single step analysis of physiologically important molecules in biological fluids. An important aspect of optimizing these assays for clinical use involves understanding the stability of the various aequorin variants that are available. To this end we have designed several stability studies involving three important aequorin mutants, Mutant S, Mutant 5, and Mutant 53. The cysteine free aequorin, Mutant S, has been the most ubiquitously used aequorin variant in our laboratory because of its increased stability and activity as compared to native aequorin. Mutant 5 and Mutant 53 contain a single cyteine residue at position 5 and 53 in the protein, respectively. Because of the presence of a single cysteine residue, Mutant 5 and Mutant 53 both can be site-specifically conjugated. This site specific conjugation capability gives Mutant 5 and Mutant 53 an advantage over native aequorin when developing assays. Additional studies optimizing the expression, purification, and charging of aequorin Mutant S were also performed. A thorough understanding of the efficient expression, purification, and storage of these aequorin mutants will allow for the more practical utilization of these mutants in the development of future biosensing systems.

  1. Exploring the mechanism of fluorescence quenching in proteins induced by tetracycline.

    PubMed

    Anand, Uttam; Jash, Chandrima; Boddepalli, Ravi Kiran; Shrivastava, Aseem; Mukherjee, Saptarshi

    2011-05-19

    The binding of the antibiotic tetracycline hydrochloride (TC) to three proteins was investigated by steady-state, time-resolved, and circular dichroism spectroscopy. The tryptophan (Trp) amino acid residues were used as an intrinsic fluorophore to decipher the structure-function relationship. As monitored by CD spectroscopy, the addition of TC causes the protein to alter some of its helical content although such changes are only marginal. The gradual decrease in fluorescence intensity of Trp can be ascribed to static quenching which takes place by the interaction of the drug with the protein. Besides Trp quenching, there is evidence of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) in all three proteins with different values of efficiency of energy transfer. Various quenching/binding and thermodynamic parameters associated with such drug-protein interactions have been estimated. The results thus obtained can provide guidelines to synthetic chemists to design and synthesize target-oriented drugs. PMID:21524098

  2. An optimized mRFP-based bimolecular fluorescence complementation system for the detection of protein-protein interactions in planta.

    PubMed

    Zilian, Eva; Maiss, Edgar

    2011-06-01

    An existing bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) system, based on a monomeric red fluorescent protein (mRFP), has been optimized for the investigation of protein-protein interactions in planta. The expression plasmids, encoding the N-terminal amino acids (aa) 1-168 and the C-terminal aa 169-225 of the mRFP, allow N- or C-terminal fusion of a split mRFP, with the genes of interest. Two major improvements over the original vectors have been made. Firstly, the coding sequence of a GGGSGGG-linker has been integrated between mRFP sequences and the genes of interest. Secondly, a modified mini binary vector (∼3.5 kb) was introduced as the backbone for the plant expression plasmids. Based on the results of yeast two-hybrid studies with plant viral proteins, interaction of viral proteins was tested in Nicotiana benthamiana plants and monitored by confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM). Plum pox virus coat protein and mutants thereof served as controls. The system was validated using the N-protein of Capsicum chlorosis virus for which a self-interaction was shown for the first time, the Tobacco mosaic virus coat protein and BC1 and BV1 of the Tomato yellow leaf curl Thailand virus. This optimized BiFC system provides a convenient alternative to other BiFC, as well as yeast two-hybrid assays, for detecting protein-protein interactions. PMID:21473882

  3. Imaging of green fluorescent protein in live plant by scanning near-field optical microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Jianhua; Chen, Tao; Sun, Jialin; Guo, Jihua; Zhao, Jun

    2002-04-01

    An auxin/IAA induced in vivo green fluorescent protein (GFP) in a living plant Arabidopsis root has been studied by a scanning near-field microscope in transmission mode. The promising near-field images of the inducible GFPs at sub- surface of a plant cell suggest that they may locate proximity to the cell wall, i.e. both sides of and in the cytoplasm membrane. The clear and faint fluorescent spots with 1-3 micrometers showed that the proteins localized nearer and farther to the cell wall, respectively. All GFP molecules gathered together in a cell, and no individual GFP was observed in the experiment.

  4. Cleavable DNA-protein hybrid molecular beacon: A novel efficient signal translator for sensitive fluorescence anisotropy bioassay.

    PubMed

    Hu, Pan; Yang, Bin

    2016-01-15

    Due to its unique features such as high sensitivity, homogeneous format, and independence on fluorescent intensity, fluorescence anisotropy (FA) assay has become a hotspot of study in oligonucleotide-based bioassays. However, until now most FA probes require carefully customized structure designs, and thus are neither generalizable for different sensing systems nor effective to obtain sufficient signal response. To address this issue, a cleavable DNA-protein hybrid molecular beacon was successfully engineered for signal amplified FA bioassay, via combining the unique stable structure of molecular beacon and the large molecular mass of streptavidin. Compared with single DNA strand probe or conventional molecular beacon, the DNA-protein hybrid molecular beacon exhibited a much higher FA value, which was potential to obtain high signal-background ratio in sensing process. As proof-of-principle, this novel DNA-protein hybrid molecular beacon was further applied for FA bioassay using DNAzyme-Pb(2+) as a model sensing system. This FA assay approach could selectively detect as low as 0.5nM Pb(2+) in buffer solution, and also be successful for real samples analysis with good recovery values. Compatible with most of oligonucleotide probes' designs and enzyme-based signal amplification strategies, the molecular beacon can serve as a novel signal translator to expand the application prospect of FA technology in various bioassays. PMID:26592607

  5. Strep-tag II Mutant Maltose-binding Protein for Reagentless Fluorescence Sensing

    PubMed Central

    Hasmoni, Siti Halimah; Mau, Goh Kian; Karsani, Saiful Anuar; Cass, Anthony; Shahir, Shafinaz

    2016-01-01

    Maltose-binding protein (MBP) is a periplasmic binding protein found in Gram negative bacteria. MBP is involved in maltose transport and bacterial chemotaxis; it binds to maltose and maltodextrins comprising α(1–4)-glucosidically linked linear glucose polymers and α(1–4)-glucosidically linked cyclodextrins. Upon ligand binding, MBP changes its conformation from an open to a closed form. This molecular recognition—transducing a ligand-binding event into a physical one—renders MBP an ideal candidate for biosensor development. Here, we describe the construction of a Strep-tag II mutant MBP for reagentless fluorescence sensing. malE, which encodes MBP, was amplified. A cysteine residue was introduced by site-directed mutagenesis to ensure a single label attachment at a specific site with a thiol-specific fluorescent probe. An environmentally sensitive fluorophore (IANBD amide) was covalently attached to the introduced thiol group and analysed by fluorescence sensing. The tagged mutant MBP (D95C) was purified (molecular size, ∼42 kDa). The fluorescence measurements of the IANBD-labelled Strep-tag II–D95C in the solution phase showed an appreciable change in fluorescence intensity (dissociation constant, 7.6±1.75 μM). Our mutant MBP retains maltose-binding activity and is suitable for reagentless fluorescence sensing. PMID:27019682

  6. Correlative in-resin super-resolution and electron microscopy using standard fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Errin; Seiradake, Elena; Jones, E. Yvonne; Davis, Ilan; Grünewald, Kay; Kaufmann, Rainer

    2015-01-01

    We introduce a method for correlative in-resin super-resolution fluorescence and electron microscopy (EM) of biological structures in mammalian culture cells. Cryo-fixed resin embedded samples offer superior structural preservation, performing in-resin super-resolution, however, remains a challenge. We identified key aspects of the sample preparation procedure of high pressure freezing, freeze substitution and resin embedding that are critical for preserving fluorescence and photo-switching of standard fluorescent proteins, such as mGFP, mVenus and mRuby2. This enabled us to combine single molecule localization microscopy with transmission electron microscopy imaging of standard fluorescent proteins in cryo-fixed resin embedded cells. We achieved a structural resolution of 40–50 nm (~17 nm average single molecule localization accuracy) in the fluorescence images without the use of chemical fixation or special fluorophores. Using this approach enabled the correlation of fluorescently labeled structures to the ultrastructure in the same cell at the nanometer level and superior structural preservation. PMID:25823571

  7. A multidimensional screening method for the selection of two-photon enhanced fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stoltzfus, Caleb; Barnett, Lauren; Rebane, Aleksander; Hughes, Thomas; Drobizhev, Mikhail; Wicks, Geoffrey; Mikhailov, Alexandr

    2014-03-01

    Two-photon excitation of fluorescent proteins (FPs) is widely used in imaging whole organisms or living tissues. Many different FPs are now available but these proteins have only been optimized for their one-photon properties. We have developed a technique for screening entire libraries of E. coli colonies expressing FPs that utilizes multiple wavelengths of linear excitation as well as two-photon excitation. Single mutations in a particular protein that affect one or twophoton properties are easily identified, providing new views of structure/function relationships. An amplified femtosecond Ti:sapphire laser and a spectrally filtered lamp source are used to acquire the fluorescence signals of up to ~1000 E. coli colonies on a standard Petri dish. Automation of the analysis and acquisition of the fluorescent signals makes it feasible to rapidly screen tens of thousands of colonies. In a proof of principle experiment with the commonly used EGFP, we used two rounds of error prone PCR and selection to evolve new proteins with shifted absorption and increased two-photon cross sections at 790nm. This method of screening, coupled with careful measurements of photo bleaching dynamics and two-photon cross sections, should make it possible to optimize a wide variety of fluorescent proteins and biosensors for use in two-photon microscopes.

  8. DNA binding fluorescent proteins for the direct visualization of large DNA molecules.

    PubMed

    Lee, Seonghyun; Oh, Yeeun; Lee, Jungyoon; Choe, Sojeong; Lim, Sangyong; Lee, Hyun Soo; Jo, Kyubong; Schwartz, David C

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins that also bind DNA molecules are useful reagents for a broad range of biological applications because they can be optically localized and tracked within cells, or provide versatile labels for in vitro experiments. We report a novel design for a fluorescent, DNA-binding protein (FP-DBP) that completely 'paints' entire DNA molecules, whereby sequence-independent DNA binding is accomplished by linking a fluorescent protein to two small peptides (KWKWKKA) using lysine for binding to the DNA phosphates, and tryptophan for intercalating between DNA bases. Importantly, this ubiquitous binding motif enables fluorescent proteins (Kd = 14.7 μM) to confluently stain DNA molecules and such binding is reversible via pH shifts. These proteins offer useful robust advantages for single DNA molecule studies: lack of fluorophore mediated photocleavage and staining that does not perturb polymer contour lengths. Accordingly, we demonstrate confluent staining of naked DNA molecules presented within microfluidic devices, or localized within live bacterial cells. PMID:26264666

  9. DNA binding fluorescent proteins for the direct visualization of large DNA molecules

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Seonghyun; Oh, Yeeun; Lee, Jungyoon; Choe, Sojeong; Lim, Sangyong; Lee, Hyun Soo; Jo, Kyubong; Schwartz, David C.

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins that also bind DNA molecules are useful reagents for a broad range of biological applications because they can be optically localized and tracked within cells, or provide versatile labels for in vitro experiments. We report a novel design for a fluorescent, DNA-binding protein (FP-DBP) that completely ‘paints’ entire DNA molecules, whereby sequence-independent DNA binding is accomplished by linking a fluorescent protein to two small peptides (KWKWKKA) using lysine for binding to the DNA phosphates, and tryptophan for intercalating between DNA bases. Importantly, this ubiquitous binding motif enables fluorescent proteins (Kd = 14.7 μM) to confluently stain DNA molecules and such binding is reversible via pH shifts. These proteins offer useful robust advantages for single DNA molecule studies: lack of fluorophore mediated photocleavage and staining that does not perturb polymer contour lengths. Accordingly, we demonstrate confluent staining of naked DNA molecules presented within microfluidic devices, or localized within live bacterial cells. PMID:26264666

  10. Fluorescently labeled pulmonary surfactant protein C in spread phospholipid monolayers.

    PubMed Central

    Nag, K; Perez-Gil, J; Cruz, A; Keough, K M

    1996-01-01

    Pulmonary surfactant, a lipid-protein complex, secreted into the fluid lining of lungs prevents alveolar collapse at low lung volumes. Pulmonary surfactant protein C (SP-C), an acylated, hydrophobic, alpha-helical peptide, enhances the surface activity of pulmonary surfactant lipids. Fluorescein-labeled SP-C (F-SP-C) (3, 6, 12 wt%) in dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC), and DPPC:dipalmitoylphosphatidylglycerol (DPPG) [DPPC:DPPG 7:3 mol/mol] in spread monolayers was studied by epifluorescence microscopy. Mass spectometry of F-SP-C indicated that the protein is partially deacylated and labeled with 1 mol fluorescein/1 mol protein. The protein partitioned into the fluid, or liquid expanded, phase. Increasing amounts of F-SP-C in DPPC or DPPC:DPPG monolayers decreased the size and total amounts of the condensed phase at all surface pressures. Calcium (1.6 mM) increased the amount of the condensed phase in monolayers of DPPC:DPPG but not of DPPC alone, and such monolayers were also perturbed by F-SP-C. The study indicates that SP-C perturbs the packing of neutral and anionic phospholipid monolayers even when the latter systems are condensed by calcium, indicating that interactions between SP-C and the lipids are predominantly hydrophobic in nature. Images FIGURE 2 FIGURE 4 FIGURE 7 PMID:8804608

  11. Process monitoring the inactivation of ricin and model proteins by disinfectants using fluorescence and biological activity.

    PubMed

    Cole, Kenneth D; Gaigalas, Adolfas; Almeida, Jamie L

    2008-01-01

    It is important to develop rapid and reliable processes to monitor the decontamination of toxins released to the environment. The inactivation of the protein toxin ricin by the disinfectants bleach (sodium hypochlorite) and monochloramine was measured by the effect on mammalian cell cytotoxicity. The effect of the disinfectants on the native fluorescence (due mainly to tryptophan and to a lesser extent tyrosine) of ricin was also measured in parallel. Reactions of the disinfectants resulted in a decrease in the native fluorescence that was measured in real time in a noninvasive manner. We compared the inactivation of two well-characterized model enzymes to the behavior of ricin. The model enzymes studied were lysozyme, a small basic enzyme stabilized with internal disulfide bonds, and heart-muscle-type lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), a large protein composed of four subunits. The biological activities of the model enzymes were measured in parallel with their fluorescence. Gel electrophoresis showed a large number of modifications of the proteins caused by the disinfectants reflected in changes in mobility and the formation of higher-order aggregates. Size-exclusion chromatography showed that the disinfectants did not break down the subunit structure of ricin but instead resulted in an increased size and heterogeneity of the protein. Size-exclusion chromatography of LDH indicated that the subunits were dissociated and that higher-order aggregates were also formed. Bleach caused a rapid inactivation of biological activity correlated with a rapid decrease in the fluorescence. Monochloramine required much higher concentrations for significant effects and the kinetics of the reactions were slow, with half-life values of the decrease on the order of minutes. Each protein showed individual differences in responses to the disinfectants, but there was a consistent correlation between the loss of fluorescence and the decrease in biological activity. These results indicate that

  12. Yeast surface display for protein engineering and characterization.

    PubMed

    Gai, S Annie; Wittrup, K Dane

    2007-08-01

    Yeast surface display is being employed to engineer desirable properties into proteins for a broad variety of applications. Labeling with soluble ligands enables rapid and quantitative analysis of yeast-displayed libraries by flow cytometry, while cell-surface selections allow screening of libraries with insoluble or even as-yet-uncharacterized binding targets. In parallel, the utilization of yeast surface display for protein characterization, including in particular the mapping of functional epitopes mediating protein-protein interactions, represents a significant recent advance. PMID:17870469

  13. [Fluorescence spectra study of a new toxic protein from Malania oleifera].

    PubMed

    Yuan, Yan; Xiao, Han; Kang, Hong-Jun; Chen, Rui-Yan; Dai, Xiao-Chang

    2009-03-01

    A new toxic protein named malanin was isolated from seeds of Malania olei fera by hydrophobic chromatography, whose cytotoxic activities against carcinoma cells were very strong. The conformational changes of malanin at various temperatures, pH, organic solvents, surfactant, denaturant and fluorescence quenching solvents were studied by fluorescence spectra. The fluorescence spectra of malanin excited at 280 nm and 295 nm showed a maximum at 340 nm. The emission spectra of malanin showed that Trp residues were located by a great degree in the hydrophobic area. Addition of SDS, CH5N3 x HSCN, acrylamide and KI led to changes in the molecular conformation of malanin, and caused the fluorescence quenching of Trp residues. The red-shifted emission band of malanin after adding CH5 N3 x HSCN showed that Trp residues were exposed in polar solvents. PMID:19455822

  14. Resolving environmental microheterogeneity and dielectric relaxation in fluorescence kinetics of protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rolinski, Olaf J.; McLaughlin, Damien; Birch, David J. S.; Vyshemirsky, Vladislav

    2016-06-01

    The fluorescence intensity decay of protein is easily measurable and reports on the intrinsic fluorophore-local environment interactions on the sub-nm spatial and sub-ns temporal scales, which are consistent with protein activity in numerous biomedical and industrial processes. This makes time-resolved fluorescence a perfect tool for understanding, monitoring and controlling these processes at the molecular level, but the complexity of the decay, which has been traditionally fitted to multi-exponential functions, has hampered the development of this technique over the last few decades. Using the example of tryptophan in HSA we present the alternative to the conventional approach to modelling intrinsic florescence intensity decay in protein where the key factors determining fluorescence decay, i.e. the excited-state depopulation and the dielectric relaxation (Toptygin and Brand 2000 Chem. Phys. Lett. 322 496–502), are represented by the individual relaxation functions. This allows quantification of both effects separately by determining their parameters from the global analysis of a series of fluorescence intensity decays measured at different detection wavelengths. Moreover, certain pairs of the recovered parameters of tryptophan were found to be correlated, indicating the influence of the dielectric relaxation on the transient rate of the electronic transitions. In this context the potential for the dual excited state depopulation /dielectric relaxation fluorescence lifetime sensing is discussed.

  15. Resolving environmental microheterogeneity and dielectric relaxation in fluorescence kinetics of protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rolinski, Olaf J.; McLaughlin, Damien; Birch, David J. S.; Vyshemirsky, Vladislav

    2016-09-01

    The fluorescence intensity decay of protein is easily measurable and reports on the intrinsic fluorophore-local environment interactions on the sub-nm spatial and sub-ns temporal scales, which are consistent with protein activity in numerous biomedical and industrial processes. This makes time-resolved fluorescence a perfect tool for understanding, monitoring and controlling these processes at the molecular level, but the complexity of the decay, which has been traditionally fitted to multi-exponential functions, has hampered the development of this technique over the last few decades. Using the example of tryptophan in HSA we present the alternative to the conventional approach to modelling intrinsic florescence intensity decay in protein where the key factors determining fluorescence decay, i.e. the excited-state depopulation and the dielectric relaxation (Toptygin and Brand 2000 Chem. Phys. Lett. 322 496–502), are represented by the individual relaxation functions. This allows quantification of both effects separately by determining their parameters from the global analysis of a series of fluorescence intensity decays measured at different detection wavelengths. Moreover, certain pairs of the recovered parameters of tryptophan were found to be correlated, indicating the influence of the dielectric relaxation on the transient rate of the electronic transitions. In this context the potential for the dual excited state depopulation /dielectric relaxation fluorescence lifetime sensing is discussed.

  16. Red fluorescent protein responsible for pigmentation in trematode-infected Porites compressa tissues.

    PubMed

    Palmer, Caroline V; Roth, Melissa S; Gates, Ruth D

    2009-02-01

    Reports of coral disease have increased dramatically over the last decade; however, the biological mechanisms that corals utilize to limit infection and resist disease remain poorly understood. Compromised coral tissues often display non-normal pigmentation that potentially represents an inflammation-like response, although these pigments remain uncharacterized. Using spectral emission analysis and cryo-histological and electrophoretic techniques, we investigated the pink pigmentation associated with trematodiasis, infection with Podocotyloides stenometre larval trematode, in Porites compressa. Spectral emission analysis reveals that macroscopic areas of pink pigmentation fluoresce under blue light excitation (450 nm) and produce a broad emission peak at 590 nm (+/-6) with a 60-nm full width at half maximum. Electrophoretic protein separation of pigmented tissue extract confirms the red fluorescence to be a protein rather than a low-molecular-weight compound. Histological sections demonstrate green fluorescence in healthy coral tissue and red fluorescence in the trematodiasis-compromised tissue. The red fluorescent protein (FP) is limited to the epidermis, is not associated with cells or granules, and appears unstructured. These data collectively suggest that the red FP is produced and localized in tissue infected by larval trematodes and plays a role in the immune response in corals. PMID:19218493

  17. Using Fluorescent Proteins to Monitor Glycosome Dynamics in the African Trypanosome

    PubMed Central

    Bauer, Sarah; Conlon, Meghan; Morris, Meredith

    2014-01-01

    Trypanosoma brucei is a kinetoplastid parasite that causes human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), or sleeping sickness, and a wasting disease, nagana, in cattle1. The parasite alternates between the bloodstream of the mammalian host and the tsetse fly vector. The composition of many cellular organelles changes in response to these different extracellular conditions2-5. Glycosomes are highly specialized peroxisomes in which many of the enzymes involved in glycolysis are compartmentalized. Glycosome composition changes in a developmental and environmentally regulated manner4-11. Currently, the most common techniques used to study glycosome dynamics are electron and fluorescence microscopy; techniques that are expensive, time and labor intensive, and not easily adapted to high throughput analyses. To overcome these limitations, a fluorescent-glycosome reporter system in which enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (eYFP) is fused to a peroxisome targeting sequence (PTS2), which directs the fusion protein to glycosomes12, has been established. Upon import of the PTS2eYFP fusion protein, glycosomes become fluorescent. Organelle degradation and recycling results in the loss of fluorescence that can be measured by flow cytometry. Large numbers of cells (5,000 cells/sec) can be analyzed in real-time without extensive sample preparation such as fixation and mounting. This method offers a rapid way of detecting changes in organelle composition in response to fluctuating environmental conditions. PMID:25177828

  18. Multiplexed fluorescent microarray for human salivary protein analysis using polymer microspheres and fiber-optic bundles.

    PubMed

    Nie, Shuai; Benito-Peña, Elena; Zhang, Huaibin; Wu, Yue; Walt, David R

    2013-01-01

    Herein, we describe a protocol for simultaneously measuring six proteins in saliva using a fiber-optic microsphere-based antibody array. The immuno-array technology employed combines the advantages of microsphere-based suspension array fabrication with the use of fluorescence microscopy. As described in the video protocol, commercially available 4.5 μm polymer microspheres were encoded into seven different types, differentiated by the concentration of two fluorescent dyes physically trapped inside the microspheres. The encoded microspheres containing surface carboxyl groups were modified with monoclonal capture antibodies through EDC/NHS coupling chemistry. To assemble the protein microarray, the different types of encoded and functionalized microspheres were mixed and randomly deposited in 4.5 μm microwells, which were chemically etched at the proximal end of a fiber-optic bundle. The fiber-optic bundle was used as both a carrier and for imaging the microspheres. Once assembled, the microarray was used to capture proteins in the saliva supernatant collected from the clinic. The detection was based on a sandwich immunoassay using a mixture of biotinylated detection antibodies for different analytes with a streptavidin-conjugated fluorescent probe, R-phycoerythrin. The microarray was imaged by fluorescence microscopy in three different channels, two for microsphere registration and one for the assay signal. The fluorescence micrographs were then decoded and analyzed using a homemade algorithm in MATLAB. PMID:24145242

  19. β2 Adrenergic Receptor Fluorescent Protein Fusions Traffic to the Plasma Membrane and Retain Functionality

    PubMed Central

    Bubnell, Jaclyn; Pfister, Patrick; Sapar, Maria L.; Rogers, Matthew E.; Feinstein, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) has proven useful for the study of protein interactions and dynamics for the last twenty years. A variety of new fluorescent proteins have been developed that expand the use of available excitation spectra. We have undertaken an analysis of seven of the most useful fluorescent proteins (XFPs), Cerulean (and mCerulean3), Teal, GFP, Venus, mCherry and TagRFP657, as fusions to the archetypal G-protein coupled receptor, the β2 adrenergic receptor (β2AR). We have characterized these β2AR::XFP fusions in respect to membrane trafficking and G-protein activation. We noticed that in the mouse neural cell line, OP 6, that membrane bound β2AR::XFP fusions robustly localized in the filopodia identical to gap::XFP fusions. All β2AR::XFP fusions show responses indistinguishable from each other and the non-fused form after isoprenaline exposure. Our results provide a platform by which G-protein coupled receptors can be dissected for their functionality. PMID:24086401

  20. Functional surface engineering of quantum dot hydrogels for selective fluorescence imaging of extracellular lactate release.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaomeng; Ding, Shushu; Cao, Sumei; Zhu, Anwei; Shi, Guoyue

    2016-06-15

    Selective and sensitive detection of extracellular lactate is of fundamental significance for studying the metabolic alterations in tumor progression. Here we report the rational design and synthesis of a quantum-dot-hydrogel-based fluorescent probe for biosensing and bioimaging the extracellular lactate. By surface engineering the destabilized quantum dot sol with Nile Blue, the destabilized Nile-Blue-functionalized quantum dot sol cannot only self-assemble forming quantum dot hydrogel but also monitor lactate in the presence of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide cofactor and lactate dehydrogenase through fluorescence resonance energy transfer. Notably, the surface engineered quantum dot hydrogel show high selectivity toward lactate over common metal ions, amino acids and other small molecules that widely coexist in biological system. Moreover, the destabilized Nile-Blue-functionalized quantum dots can encapsulate isolated cancer cells when self-assembled into a hydrogel and thus specifically detect and image the extracellular lactate metabolism. By virtue of these properties, the functionalized quantum dot hydrogel was further successfully applied to monitor the effect of metabolic agents. PMID:26852200

  1. Computationally mapping sequence space to understand evolutionary protein engineering.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, Kathryn A; Tidor, Bruce

    2008-01-01

    Evolutionary protein engineering has been dramatically successful, producing a wide variety of new proteins with altered stability, binding affinity, and enzymatic activity. However, the success of such procedures is often unreliable, and the impact of the choice of protein, engineering goal, and evolutionary procedure is not well understood. We have created a framework for understanding aspects of the protein engineering process by computationally mapping regions of feasible sequence space for three small proteins using structure-based design protocols. We then tested the ability of different evolutionary search strategies to explore these sequence spaces. The results point to a non-intuitive relationship between the error-prone PCR mutation rate and the number of rounds of replication. The evolutionary relationships among feasible sequences reveal hub-like sequences that serve as particularly fruitful starting sequences for evolutionary search. Moreover, genetic recombination procedures were examined, and tradeoffs relating sequence diversity and search efficiency were identified. This framework allows us to consider the impact of protein structure on the allowed sequence space and therefore on the challenges that each protein presents to error-prone PCR and genetic recombination procedures. PMID:18020358

  2. Estimating orientation factors in the FRET theory of fluorescent proteins: the TagRFP-KFP pair and beyond.

    PubMed

    Khrenova, Maria; Topol, Igor; Collins, Jack; Nemukhin, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    The orientation factor κ(2), one of the key parameters defining Förster resonance energy transfer efficiency, is determined by the transition dipole moment orientations of the donor and acceptor species. Using the results of quantum chemical and quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical calculations for the chromophore-containing pockets in selected colored proteins of the green fluorescent protein family, we derived transition dipole moments corresponding to the S0,min → S1 excitation for green fluorescent protein, red fluorescent protein (TagRFP), and kindling fluorescent protein, and the S1,min → S0 emission for TagRFP. These data allowed us to estimate κ(2) values for the TagRFP-linker-kindling fluorescent protein tetrameric complex required for constructing novel sensors. PMID:25564859

  3. High-Resolution In Vivo Imaging of Fluorescent Proteins Using Window Chamber Models

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, Gregory M.; Fontanella, Andrew N.; Shan, Siqing; Dewhirst, Mark W.

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins enable in vivo characterization of a wide and growing array of morphological and functional biomarkers. To fully capitalize on the spatial and temporal information afforded by these reporter proteins, a method for imaging these proteins at high resolution longitudinally is required. This chapter describes the use of window chamber models as a means of imaging fluorescent proteins and other optical parameters. Such models essentially involve surgically implanting a window through which tumor or normal tissue can be imaged using existing microscopy techniques. This enables acquisition of high-quality images down to the cellular or subcellular scale, exploiting the diverse array of optical contrast mechanisms, while also maintaining the native microenvironment of the tissue of interest. This makes these techniques applicable to a wide array of problems in the biomedical sciences. PMID:22700402

  4. Accessing gelling ability of vegetable proteins using rheological and fluorescence techniques.

    PubMed

    Batista, Ana Paula; Portugal, Carla A M; Sousa, Isabel; Crespo, João G; Raymundo, Anabela

    2005-08-01

    This work aims to present a comprehensive study about the macroscopic characteristics of globular vegetable proteins, in terms of their gelling ability, by understanding their molecular behaviour, when submitted to a thermal gelling process. The gels of soy, pea and lupin proteins were characterized by rheological techniques. Gelation kinetics, mechanical spectra, as well as the texture of these gels were analyzed and compared. Additionally, capillary viscometry, steady-state fluorescence and fluorescence anisotropy were used to monitor the structural changes induced by the thermal denaturation, which constitutes the main condition for the formation of a gel structure. Based on these techniques it was possible to establish a relationship between the gelling ability of each protein isolate and their structural resistance to thermal unfolding, enabling us to explain the weakest and the strongest gelling ability observed for lupin and soy proteins isolates, respectively. PMID:15996729

  5. Secretion of human interleukin-2 fused with green fluorescent protein in recombinant Pichia pastoris.

    PubMed

    Cha, Hyung Joon; Dalal, Nimish N; Bentley, William E

    2005-07-01

    Methylotrophic yeast Pichia pastoris is convenient for the expression of eukaryotic foreign proteins owing to its potential for posttranslational modifications, protein folding, and facile culturing. In this work, human interleukin (hIL)-2 was successfully produced as a secreted fusion form in recombinant P. pastoris. By employing green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a monitoring fusion partner, clear identification of fusion protein expression and quantification of intracellular hIL-2 were possible even though there was no correlation between culture supernatant fluorescence and secreted hIL-2 owing to high media interference. Importantly, by the addition of casamino acids in basal medium, we were able to enhance threefold amount of secreted hIL-2, which was present both as a fusion and as a clipped fragment. PMID:16014994

  6. Visible-wavelength two-photon excitation microscopy for fluorescent protein imaging.

    PubMed

    Yamanaka, Masahito; Saito, Kenta; Smith, Nicholas I; Arai, Yoshiyuki; Uegaki, Kumiko; Yonemaru, Yasuo; Mochizuki, Kentaro; Kawata, Satoshi; Nagai, Takeharu; Fujita, Katsumasa

    2015-10-01

    The simultaneous observation of multiple fluorescent proteins (FPs) by optical microscopy is revealing mechanisms by which proteins and organelles control a variety of cellular functions. Here we show the use of visible-light based two-photon excitation for simultaneously imaging multiple FPs. We demonstrated that multiple fluorescent targets can be concurrently excited by the absorption of two photons from the visible wavelength range and can be applied in multicolor fluorescence imaging. The technique also allows simultaneous single-photon excitation to offer simultaneous excitation of FPs across the entire range of visible wavelengths from a single excitation source. The calculation of point spread functions shows that the visible-wavelength two-photon excitation provides the fundamental improvement of spatial resolution compared to conventional confocal microscopy. PMID:26238663

  7. Visible-wavelength two-photon excitation microscopy for fluorescent protein imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamanaka, Masahito; Saito, Kenta; Smith, Nicholas I.; Arai, Yoshiyuki; Uegaki, Kumiko; Yonemaru, Yasuo; Mochizuki, Kentaro; Kawata, Satoshi; Nagai, Takeharu; Fujita, Katsumasa

    2015-10-01

    The simultaneous observation of multiple fluorescent proteins (FPs) by optical microscopy is revealing mechanisms by which proteins and organelles control a variety of cellular functions. Here we show the use of visible-light based two-photon excitation for simultaneously imaging multiple FPs. We demonstrated that multiple fluorescent targets can be concurrently excited by the absorption of two photons from the visible wavelength range and can be applied in multicolor fluorescence imaging. The technique also allows simultaneous single-photon excitation to offer simultaneous excitation of FPs across the entire range of visible wavelengths from a single excitation source. The calculation of point spread functions shows that the visible-wavelength two-photon excitation provides the fundamental improvement of spatial resolution compared to conventional confocal microscopy.

  8. IR-FEL-induced green fluorescence protein (GFP) gene transfer into plant cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Awazu, Kunio; Kinpara, Takeshi; Tamiya, Eiichi

    2002-05-01

    A Free Electron Laser (FEL) holds potential for various biotechnological applications due to its characteristics such as flexible wavelength tunability, short pulse and high peak power. We could successfully introduce the Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) gene into tobacco BY2 cells by IR-FEL laser irradiation. The irradiated area of the solution containing BY2 cells and plasmid was about 0.1 mm 2. FEL irradiation at a wavelength of 5.75 and 6.1 μm, targeting absorption by the ester bond of the lipid and the amide I bond of the protein, respectively, was shown to cause the introduction of the fluorescent dye into the cell. On the other hand, transient expression of the GFP fluorescence was only observed after irradiation at 5.75 μm. The maximum transfer efficiency was about 0.5%.

  9. Quantitative analysis of gene expression in preimplantation mouse embryos using green fluorescent protein reporter.

    PubMed

    Medvedev, Serguei Yuri; Tokunaga, Tomoyuki; Schultz, Richard M; Furukawa, Tsutomu; Nagai, Takashi; Yamaguchi, Manabu; Hosoe, Misa; Yakovlev, Alexander F; Takahashi, Seiya; Izaike, Yoshiaki

    2002-07-01

    We have developed a method to monitor noninvasively, quantitatively, and in real-time transcription in living preimplantation mouse embryos by measuring expression of a short half-life form of enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) following microinjection of a plasmid-borne EGFP reporter gene. A standard curve was established by injecting known amounts of recombinant green fluorescent protein, and transcriptional activity was then determined by interpolating the amount of fluorescence in the DNA-injected embryos. This approach permitted multiple measurements in single embryos with no significant detrimental effect on embryonic development as long as light exposure was brief (<30 sec) and no more than two measurements were made each day. This method should facilitate analysis of the regulation of gene expression in preimplantation embryos; in particular, during the maternal-to-zygotic transition, and in other species in which limited numbers of embryos are available. PMID:12080029

  10. Engineering nanoparticles surface for biosensing: "Chemical noses" to detect and identify proteins, bacteria and cancerous cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miranda-Sanchez, Oscar Ramon

    Rapid and sensitive detection of biomolecules is an important issue in nanomedicine. Many disorders are manifested by changes in protein levels of serum and other biofluids. Rapid and effective differentiation between normal and cancerous cells is an important challenge for the diagnosis and treatment of tumor. Likewise, rapid and effective identification of pathogens is a key target in both biomedical and environmental monitoring. Most biological recognition processes occur via specific interactions. Gold nanoparticles (AuNP s) feature sizes commensurate with biomacromolecules, coupled with useful physical and optical properties. A key issue in the use of nanomaterials is controlling the interfacial interactions of these complex systems. Modulation of these physicochemical properties can be readily achieved by engineering nanoparticles surface. Inspired by the idea of mimicking nature, a convenient, precise and rapid method for sensing proteins, cancerous cells and bacteria has been developed by overtaking the superb performance of biological olfactory systems in odor detection, identification, tracking, and location. On the fundamental side, an array-based/'chemical nose' sensor composed of cationic functionalized AuNPs as receptors and anionic fluorescent conjugated polymers or green fluorescent proteins or enzyme/substrates as transducers that can properly detect and identify proteins, bacteria, and cancerous cells has been successfully fabricated.

  11. Improving brightness and photostability of green and red fluorescent proteins for live cell imaging and FRET reporting.

    PubMed

    Bajar, Bryce T; Wang, Emily S; Lam, Amy J; Kim, Bongjae B; Jacobs, Conor L; Howe, Elizabeth S; Davidson, Michael W; Lin, Michael Z; Chu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Many genetically encoded biosensors use Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) to dynamically report biomolecular activities. While pairs of cyan and yellow fluorescent proteins (FPs) are most commonly used as FRET partner fluorophores, respectively, green and red FPs offer distinct advantages for FRET, such as greater spectral separation, less phototoxicity, and lower autofluorescence. We previously developed the green-red FRET pair Clover and mRuby2, which improves responsiveness in intramolecular FRET reporters with different designs. Here we report the engineering of brighter and more photostable variants, mClover3 and mRuby3. mClover3 improves photostability by 60% and mRuby3 by 200% over the previous generation of fluorophores. Notably, mRuby3 is also 35% brighter than mRuby2, making it both the brightest and most photostable monomeric red FP yet characterized. Furthermore, we developed a standardized methodology for assessing FP performance in mammalian cells as stand-alone markers and as FRET partners. We found that mClover3 or mRuby3 expression in mammalian cells provides the highest fluorescence signals of all jellyfish GFP or coral RFP derivatives, respectively. Finally, using mClover3 and mRuby3, we engineered an improved version of the CaMKIIα reporter Camuiα with a larger response amplitude. PMID:26879144

  12. Improving brightness and photostability of green and red fluorescent proteins for live cell imaging and FRET reporting

    PubMed Central

    Bajar, Bryce T.; Wang, Emily S.; Lam, Amy J.; Kim, Bongjae B.; Jacobs, Conor L.; Howe, Elizabeth S.; Davidson, Michael W.; Lin, Michael Z.; Chu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Many genetically encoded biosensors use Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) to dynamically report biomolecular activities. While pairs of cyan and yellow fluorescent proteins (FPs) are most commonly used as FRET partner fluorophores, respectively, green and red FPs offer distinct advantages for FRET, such as greater spectral separation, less phototoxicity, and lower autofluorescence. We previously developed the green-red FRET pair Clover and mRuby2, which improves responsiveness in intramolecular FRET reporters with different designs. Here we report the engineering of brighter and more photostable variants, mClover3 and mRuby3. mClover3 improves photostability by 60% and mRuby3 by 200% over the previous generation of fluorophores. Notably, mRuby3 is also 35% brighter than mRuby2, making it both the brightest and most photostable monomeric red FP yet characterized. Furthermore, we developed a standardized methodology for assessing FP performance in mammalian cells as stand-alone markers and as FRET partners. We found that mClover3 or mRuby3 expression in mammalian cells provides the highest fluorescence signals of all jellyfish GFP or coral RFP derivatives, respectively. Finally, using mClover3 and mRuby3, we engineered an improved version of the CaMKIIα reporter Camuiα with a larger response amplitude. PMID:26879144

  13. Cyanine-based probe\\tag-peptide pair for fluorescence protein imaging and fluorescence protein imaging methods

    DOEpatents

    Mayer-Cumblidge, M. Uljana; Cao, Haishi

    2010-08-17

    A molecular probe comprises two arsenic atoms and at least one cyanine based moiety. A method of producing a molecular probe includes providing a molecule having a first formula, treating the molecule with HgOAc, and subsequently transmetallizing with AsCl.sub.3. The As is liganded to ethanedithiol to produce a probe having a second formula. A method of labeling a peptide includes providing a peptide comprising a tag sequence and contacting the peptide with a biarsenical molecular probe. A complex is formed comprising the tag sequence and the molecular probe. A method of studying a peptide includes providing a mixture containing a peptide comprising a peptide tag sequence, adding a biarsenical probe to the mixture, and monitoring the fluorescence of the mixture.

  14. Super-resolution Microscopy of Clickable Amino Acids Reveals the Effects of Fluorescent Protein Tagging on Protein Assemblies.

    PubMed

    Vreja, Ingrid C; Nikić, Ivana; Göttfert, Fabian; Bates, Mark; Kröhnert, Katharina; Outeiro, Tiago F; Hell, Stefan W; Lemke, Edward A; Rizzoli, Silvio O

    2015-11-24

    The advent of super-resolution microscopy (nanoscopy) has set high standards for fluorescence tagging. Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are convenient tags in conventional imaging, but their use in nanoscopy has been questioned due to their relatively large size and propensity to form multimers. Here, we compared the nanoscale organization of proteins with or without FP tags by introducing the unnatural amino acid propargyl-L-lysine (PRK) in 26 proteins known to form multimolecular arrangements and into their FP-tagged variants. We revealed the proteins by coupling synthetic fluorophores to PRK via click chemistry and visualized them using ground-state depletion microscopy followed by individual molecule return, as well as stimulated emission depletion microscopy. The arrangements formed by the FP-tagged and nontagged proteins were similar. Mild, but statistically significant differences were observed for only six proteins (23% of all proteins tested). This suggests that FP-based nanoscopy is generally reliable. Unnatural amino acids should be a reliable alternative for the few proteins that are sensitive to FP tagging. PMID:26498474

  15. Femtosecond lasing from a fluorescent protein in a one dimensional random cavity

    PubMed Central

    Drane, T.M.; Bach, H.; Shapiro, M.; Milner, V.

    2015-01-01

    We present evidence of random lasing from the fluorescent protein DsRed2 embedded in a random one-dimensional cavity. Lasing is achieved when a purified protein solution, placed inside a layered random medium, is optically excited with a femtosecond pump pulse in the direction perpendicular to the plane of random layers. We demonstrate that pumping with ultrashort pulses resulted in a lasing threshold two orders of magnitude lower than that found for nanosecond excitation. PMID:26137388

  16. Laser-Induced Fluorescence Analysis of Protein-Based Binding Media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nevin, A.; Cather, S.; Anglos, D.; Fotakis, Costas

    Laser-induced fluorescence of intrinsic fluorophores of organic media found in paintings (casein, animal glue and egg proteins) provides a means of characterising general classes of media depending on the amino acid composition and presence of degradation cross-linkages. Wavelength dependence of spectra is investigated for non-destructive and non-invasive analyses of thin films of protein-based binding media.

  17. Femtosecond lasing from a fluorescent protein in a one dimensional random cavity.

    PubMed

    Drane, T M; Bach, H; Shapiro, M; Milner, V

    2015-05-01

    We present evidence of random lasing from the fluorescent protein DsRed2 embedded in a random one-dimensional cavity. Lasing is achieved when a purified protein solution, placed inside a layered random medium, is optically excited with a femtosecond pump pulse in the direction perpendicular to the plane of random layers. We demonstrate that pumping with ultrashort pulses resulted in a lasing threshold two orders of magnitude lower than that found for nanosecond excitation. PMID:26137388

  18. Engineering Lipid Bilayer Membranes for Protein Studies

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Muhammad Shuja; Dosoky, Noura Sayed; Williams, John Dalton

    2013-01-01

    Lipid membranes regulate the flow of nutrients and communication signaling between cells and protect the sub-cellular structures. Recent attempts to fabricate artificial systems using nanostructures that mimic the physiological properties of natural lipid bilayer membranes (LBM) fused with transmembrane proteins have helped demonstrate the importance of temperature, pH, ionic strength, adsorption behavior, conformational reorientation and surface density in cellular membranes which all affect the incorporation of proteins on solid surfaces. Much of this work is performed on artificial templates made of polymer sponges or porous materials based on alumina, mica, and porous silicon (PSi) surfaces. For example, porous silicon materials have high biocompatibility, biodegradability, and photoluminescence, which allow them to be used both as a support structure for lipid bilayers or a template to measure the electrochemical functionality of living cells grown over the surface as in vivo. The variety of these media, coupled with the complex physiological conditions present in living systems, warrant a summary and prospectus detailing which artificial systems provide the most promise for different biological conditions. This study summarizes the use of electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) data on artificial biological membranes that are closely matched with previously published biological systems using both black lipid membrane and patch clamp techniques. PMID:24185908

  19. Expression of Fluorescent Proteins in Bifidobacteria for Analysis of Host-Microbe Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Grimm, Verena; Gleinser, Marita; Neu, Caroline; Zhurina, Daria

    2014-01-01

    Bifidobacteria are an important component of the human gastrointestinal microbiota and are frequently used as probiotics. The genetic inaccessibility and lack of molecular tools commonly used in other bacteria have hampered a detailed analysis of the genetic determinants of bifidobacteria involved in their adaptation to, colonization of, and interaction with the host. In the present study, a range of molecular tools were developed that will allow the closing of some of the gaps in functional analysis of bifidobacteria. A number of promoters were tested for transcriptional activity in Bifidobacterium bifidum S17 using pMDY23, a previously published promoter probe vector. The promoter of the gap gene (Pgap) of B. bifidum S17 yielded the highest promoter activity among the promoters tested. Thus, this promoter and the pMDY23 backbone were used to construct a range of vectors for expression of different fluorescent proteins (FPs). Successful expression of cyan fluorescent protein (CFP), green fluorescent protein (GFP), yellow fluorescent protein (YFP), and mCherry could be shown for three strains representing three different Bifidobacterium spp. The red fluorescent B. bifidum S17/pVG-mCherry was further used to demonstrate application of fluorescent bifidobacteria for adhesion assays and detection in primary human macrophages cultured in vitro. Furthermore, pMGC-mCherry was cloned by combining a chloramphenicol resistance marker and expression of the FP mCherry under the control of Pgap. The chloramphenicol resistance marker of pMGC-mCherry was successfully used to determine gastrointestinal transit time of B. bifidum S17. Moreover, B. bifidum S17/pMGC-mCherry could be detected in fecal samples of mice after oral administration. PMID:24584243

  20. Erratum: Colorectal Cancer Cell Surface Protein Profiling Using an Antibody Microarray and Fluorescence Multiplexing.

    PubMed

    2015-01-01

    The author's email has been corrected in the publication of Colorectal Cancer Cell Surface Protein Profiling Using an Antibody Microarray and Fluorescence Multiplexing. There was an error with the author, Jerry Zhou's, email. The author's email has been updated to: j.zhou@uws.edu.au from: jzho7551@mail.usyd.edu.au. PMID:26167960

  1. Bright and stable near infra-red fluorescent protein for in vivo imaging

    PubMed Central

    Filonov, Grigory S.; Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; Ting, Li-Min; Zhang, Jinghang; Kim, Kami; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2011-01-01

    The ability of non-invasive monitoring of deep-tissue developmental, metabolic, and pathogenic processes will advance modern biotechnology. Imaging of live mammals using fluorescent probes is more feasible within a “near-infrared optical window” (NIRW)1. Here we report a phytochrome-based near infra-red fluorescent protein (iRFP) with the excitation/emission maxima at 690/713 nm. Bright fluorescence in a living mouse proved iRFP to be a superior probe for non-invasive imaging of internal mammalian tissues. Its high intracellular stability, low cytotoxicity, and lack of the requirement to add external biliverdin-chromophore makes iRFP as easy to use as conventional GFP-like proteins. Compared to earlier phytochrome-derived fluorescent probes, the iRFP protein has better in vitro characteristics and performs well in cells and in vivo, having greater effective brightness and photostability. Compared to the far-red GFP-like proteins, iRFP has substantially higher signal to background ratio in a mouse model owing to its infra-red shifted spectra. PMID:21765402

  2. Visualizing compound transgenic zebrafish in development: a tale of green fluorescent protein and KillerRed.

    PubMed

    Korzh, Vladimir; Teh, Cathleen; Kondrychyn, Igor; Chudakov, Dmitry M; Lukyanov, Sergey

    2011-03-01

    Optically translucent embryos of model vertebrates expressing transgenic fluorescent proteins provide a possibility to unravel developmental events, particul