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Sample records for fluorescent proteins engineered

  1. Engineering fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Miyawaki, Atsushi; Nagai, Takeharu; Mizuno, Hideaki

    2005-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein from the jellyfish Aequorea victora (GFP) and GFP-like proteins from Anthozoa species encode light-absorbing chromophores intrinsically within their respective protein sequences. Recent studies have made progress in obtaining bright variants of these proteins which develop chromophores quickly and efficiently, as well as novel fluorescent proteins that photoactivate or photoconvert, i.e., become fluorescent or change colors upon illumination at specific wavelengths. Also, monomeric versions of these proteins have been engineered for fusion protein applications. Simple GFP variants and circularly permuted GFP variants have been used to develop fluorescent probes that sense physiological signals such as membrane potential and concentrations of free calcium. Further molecular characterization of the structure and maturation of these proteins is in progress, aimed at providing information for rational design of variants with desired fluorescence properties.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  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.

    PubMed

    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

    2015-07-01

    In this article, 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. Engineering fluorescent protein substrates for the AAA+ Lon protease.

    PubMed

    Wohlever, Matthew L; Nager, Andrew R; Baker, Tania A; Sauer, Robert T

    2013-04-01

    AAA+ proteases, such as Escherichia coli Lon, recognize protein substrates by binding to specific peptide degrons and then unfold and translocate the protein into an internal degradation chamber for proteolysis. For some AAA+ proteases, attaching specific degrons to the N- or C-terminus of green fluorescent protein (GFP) generates useful substrates, whose unfolding and degradation can be monitored by loss of fluorescence, but Lon fails to degrade appropriately tagged GFP variants at a significant rate. Here, we demonstrate that Lon catalyzes robust unfolding and degradation of circularly permuted variants of GFP with a β20 degron appended to the N terminus or a sul20 degron appended to the C terminus. Lon degradation of non-permuted GFP-sul20 is very slow, in part because the enzyme cannot efficiently extract the degron-proximal C-terminal β-strand to initiate denaturation. The circularly permuted GFP substrates described here allow convenient high-throughput assays of the kinetics of Lon degradation in vitro and also permit assays of Lon proteolysis in vivo.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

    2015-08-06

    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. TGP, an extremely stable, non-aggregating fluorescent protein created by structure-guided surface engineering

    PubMed Central

    Close, Devin W.; Don Paul, Craig; 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.

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:25287913

  11. 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

  12. Facilitating chromophore formation of engineered Ca(2+) binding green fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Holder, Angela N; Ellis, April L; Zou, Jin; Chen, Ning; Yang, Jenny J

    2009-06-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) containing a self-coded chromophore has been applied in protein trafficking and folding, gene expression, and as sensors in living cells. While the "cycle3" mutation denoted as C3 mutation (F99S/M153T/V163A) offers the ability to increase GFP fluorescence at 37 degrees C, it is not clear whether such mutations will also be able to assist the folding and formation of the chromophore upon the addition of metal ion binding sites. Here, we investigate in both bacterial and mammalian systems, the effect of C2 (M153T/V163A) and C3 (F99S/M153T/V163A) mutations on the folding of enhanced GFP (EGFP, includes F64L/S65T) and its variants engineered with two types of Ca(2+) binding sites: (1) a designed discontinuous Ca(2+) binding site and (2) a grafted continuous Ca(2+) binding motif. We show that, for the constructed EGFP variants, the C2 mutation is sufficient to facilitate the production of fluorescence in both bacterial and mammalian cells. Further addition of the mutation F99S decreases the folding efficiency of these variants although a similar effect is not detectable for EGFP, likely due to the already greatly enhanced mutation F64L/S65T from the original GFP, which hastens the chromophore formation. The extinction coefficient and quantum yield of purified proteins of each construct were also examined to compare the effects of both C2 and C3 mutations on protein spectroscopic properties. Our quantitative analyses of the effect of C2 and C3 mutations on the folding and formation of GFP chromophore that undergoes different folding trajectories in bacterial versus mammalian cells provide insights into the development of fluorescent protein-based analytical sensors.

  13. 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

  14. Lighting up G protein-coupled purinergic receptors with engineered fluorescent ligands

    PubMed Central

    Ciruela, Francisco; Fernández-Dueñas, Víctor; Jacobson, Kenneth A.

    2015-01-01

    The use of G protein-coupled receptors fluorescent ligands is undergoing continuous expansion. In line with this, fluorescent agonists and antagonists of high affinity for G protein-coupled adenosine and P2Y receptors have been shown to be useful pharmacological probe compounds. Fluorescent ligands for A1R, A2AR, and A3R (adenosine receptors) and P2Y2R, P2Y4R, P2Y6R, and P2Y14R (nucleotide receptors) have been reported. Such ligands have been successfully applied to drug discovery and to GPCR characterization by flow cytometry, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, fluorescence microscopy, fluorescence polarization, fluorescence resonance energy transfer and scanning confocal microscopy. Here we summarize recently reported and readily available representative fluorescent ligands of purinergic receptors. In addition, we pay special attention on the use of this family of fluorescent ligands revealing two main aspects of purinergic receptor biology, namely ligand binding and receptor oligomerization. PMID:25890205

  15. 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.

  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. 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).

  18. Molecular dynamics study of chemically engineered green fluorescent protein mutants: comparison of intramolecular fluorescence resonance energy transfer rate.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Felicity L; Frank, Filipp; Marks, Gabriel E; Suzuki, Miho; Douglas, Kenneth T; Bryce, Richard A

    2009-04-01

    Because of its unusual spectroscopic properties, green fluorescent protein (GFP) has become a useful tool in molecular genetics, biochemistry and cell biology. Here, we computationally characterize the behavior of two GFP constructs, designed as bioprobes for enzymatic triggering using intramolecular fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET). These constructs differ in the location of an intramolecular FRET partner, an attached chemical chromophore (either near an N-terminal or C-terminal site). We apply the temperature replica exchange molecular dynamics method to the two flexible constructs in conjunction with a generalized Born implicit solvent model. The calculated rate of FRET was derived from the interchromophore distance, R, and orientational factor, kappa(2). In agreement with experiment, the construct with the C-terminally attached dye was predicted to have higher energy transfer rate than observed for the N-terminal construct. The molecular basis for this observation is discussed. In addition, we find that the orientational factor, kappa(2), deviates from the commonly assumed value, the implications of which are also considered.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Semi-rational engineering of a coral fluorescent protein into an efficient highlighter.

    PubMed

    Tsutsui, Hidekazu; Karasawa, Satoshi; Shimizu, Hideaki; Nukina, Nobuyuki; Miyawaki, Atsushi

    2005-03-01

    Kaede is a natural photoconvertible fluorescent protein found in the coral Trachyphyllia geoffroyi. It contains a tripeptide, His 62-Tyr 63-Gly 64, which acts as a green chromophore that is photoconvertible to red following (ultra-) violet irradiation. Here, we report the molecular cloning and crystal structure determination of a new fluorescent protein, KikG, from the coral Favia favus, and its in vitro evolution conferring green-to-red photoconvertibility. Substitution of the His 62-Tyr 63-Gly 64 sequence into the native protein provided only negligible photoconversion. On the basis of the crystal structure, semi-rational mutagenesis of the amino acids surrounding the chromophore was performed, leading to the generation of an efficient highlighter, KikGR. Within mammalian cells, KikGR is more efficiently photoconverted and is several-fold brighter in both the green and red states than Kaede. In addition, KikGR was successfully photoconverted using two-photon excitation microscopy at 760 nm, ensuring optical cell labelling with better spatial discrimination in thick and highly scattering tissues.

  3. Broad host range vectors for expression of proteins with (Twin-) Strep-tag, His-tag and engineered, export optimized yellow fluorescent protein

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In current protein research, a limitation still is the production of active recombinant proteins or native protein associations to assess their function. Especially the localization and analysis of protein-complexes or the identification of modifications and small molecule interaction partners by co-purification experiments requires a controllable expression of affinity- and/or fluorescence tagged variants of a protein of interest in its native cellular background. Advantages of periplasmic and/or homologous expressions can frequently not be realized due to a lack of suitable tools. Instead, experiments are often limited to the heterologous production in one of the few well established expression strains. Results Here, we introduce a series of new RK2 based broad host range expression plasmids for inducible production of affinity- and fluorescence tagged proteins in the cytoplasm and periplasm of a wide range of Gram negative hosts which are designed to match the recently suggested modular Standard European Vector Architecture and database. The vectors are equipped with a yellow fluorescent protein variant which is engineered to fold and brightly fluoresce in the bacterial periplasm following Sec-mediated export, as shown from fractionation and imaging studies. Expression of Strep-tag®II and Twin-Strep-tag® fusion proteins in Pseudomonas putida KT2440 is demonstrated for various ORFs. Conclusion The broad host range constructs we have produced enable good and controlled expression of affinity tagged protein variants for single-step purification and qualify for complex co-purification experiments. Periplasmic export variants enable production of affinity tagged proteins and generation of fusion proteins with a novel engineered Aequorea-based yellow fluorescent reporter protein variant with activity in the periplasm of the tested Gram-negative model bacteria Pseudomonas putida KT2440 and Escherichia coli K12 for production, localization or co

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

    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.

  5. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-08-11

    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 and 1.5 A, 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Fluorescence-based sensing of glucose using engineered glucose/galactose-binding protein: A comparison of fluorescence resonance energy transfer and environmentally sensitive dye labelling strategies

    SciTech Connect

    Khan, Faaizah; Gnudi, Luigi; Pickup, John C.

    2008-01-04

    Fluorescence-based glucose sensors using glucose-binding protein (GBP) as the receptor have employed fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) and environmentally sensitive dyes, but with widely varying sensitivity. We therefore compared signal changes in (a) a FRET system constructed by transglutaminase-mediated N-terminal attachment of Alexa Fluor 488/555 as donor and QSY 7 as acceptor at Cys 152 or 182 mutations with (b) GBP labelled with the environmentally sensitive dye badan at C152 or 182. Both FRET systems had a small maximal fluorescence change at saturating glucose (7% and 16%), badan attached at C152 was associated with a 300% maximal fluorescence increase with glucose, though with badan at C182 there was no change. We conclude that glucose sensing based on GBP and FRET does not produce a larger enough signal change for clinical use; both the nature of the environmentally sensitive dye and its site of conjugation seem important for maximum signal change; badan-GBP152C has a large glucose-induced fluorescence change, suitable for development as a glucose sensor.

  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. A bright monomeric green fluorescent protein derived from Branchiostoma lanceolatum

    PubMed Central

    Shaner, Nathan C.; Lambert, Gerard G.; Chammas, Andrew; Ni, Yuhui; Cranfill, Paula J.; Baird, Michelle A.; Sell, Brittney R.; Allen, John R.; Day, Richard N.; Israelsson, Maria; Davidson, Michael W.; Wang, Jiwu

    2013-01-01

    Despite the existence of fluorescent proteins spanning the entire visual spectrum, the bulk of modern imaging experiments continue to rely on variants of the green fluorescent protein derived from Aequorea victoria. Meanwhile, a great deal of recent effort has been devoted to engineering and improving red fluorescent proteins, and relatively little attention has been given to green and yellow variants. Here we report a novel monomeric yellow-green fluorescent protein, mNeonGreen, which is derived from a tetrameric fluorescent protein from the cephalochordate Branchiostoma lanceolatum. This fluorescent protein is the brightest monomeric green or yellow fluorescent protein yet described, performs exceptionally well as a fusion tag for traditional imaging as well as stochastic single-molecule superresolution imaging, and is an excellent FRET acceptor for the newest generation of cyan fluorescent proteins. PMID:23524392

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. A practical teaching course in directed protein evolution using the green fluorescent protein as a model.

    PubMed

    Ruller, Roberto; Silva-Rocha, Rafael; Silva, Artur; Cruz Schneider, Maria Paula; 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 reaction. Screening of bacterial colonies transformed with random mutant libraries identified GFP variants with increased fluorescence yields. Mapping the three-dimensional structure of these mutants demonstrated how alterations in structural features such as the environment around the fluorophore and properties of the protein surface can influence functional properties such as the intensity of fluorescence and protein solubility.

  17. 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…

  18. Photoconversion in orange and red fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Kremers, Gert-Jan; Hazelwood, Kristin L; Murphy, Christopher S; Davidson, Michael W; Piston, David W

    2009-05-01

    We found that photoconversion is fairly common among orange and red fluorescent proteins, as in a screen of 12 proteins, 8 exhibited photoconversion. Specifically, three red fluorescent proteins could be switched to a green state, and two orange variants could be photoconverted to a far-red state. The orange proteins are ideal for dual-probe highlighter applications, and they exhibited the most red-shifted excitation of all fluorescent proteins described to date.

  19. 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.

  20. Protein disulfide engineering.

    PubMed

    Dombkowski, Alan A; Sultana, Kazi Zakia; Craig, Douglas B

    2014-01-21

    Improving the stability of proteins is an important goal in many biomedical and industrial applications. A logical approach is to emulate stabilizing molecular interactions found in nature. Disulfide bonds are covalent interactions that provide substantial stability to many proteins and conform to well-defined geometric conformations, thus making them appealing candidates in protein engineering efforts. Disulfide engineering is the directed design of novel disulfide bonds into target proteins. This important biotechnological tool has achieved considerable success in a wide range of applications, yet the rules that govern the stabilizing effects of disulfide bonds are not fully characterized. Contrary to expectations, many designed disulfide bonds have resulted in decreased stability of the modified protein. We review progress in disulfide engineering, with an emphasis on the issue of stability and computational methods that facilitate engineering efforts.

  1. Blue protein with red fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Swagatha; Yu, Chi-Li; Ferraro, Daniel J.; Sudha, Sai; Pal, Samir Kumar; Schaefer, Wayne F.; Gibson, David T.; Ramaswamy, S.

    2016-01-01

    The walleye (Sander vitreus) is a golden yellow fish that inhabits the Northern American lakes. The recent sightings of the blue walleye and the correlation of its sighting to possible increased UV radiation have been proposed earlier. The underlying molecular basis of its adaptation to increased UV radiation is the presence of a protein (Sandercyanin)–ligand complex in the mucus of walleyes. Degradation of heme by UV radiation results in the formation of Biliverdin IXα (BLA), the chromophore bound to Sandercyanin. We show that Sandercyanin is a monomeric protein that forms stable homotetramers on addition of BLA to the protein. A structure of the Sandercyanin–BLA complex, purified from the fish mucus, reveals a glycosylated protein with a lipocalin fold. This protein–ligand complex absorbs light in the UV region (λmax of 375 nm) and upon excitation at this wavelength emits in the red region (λmax of 675 nm). Unlike all other known biliverdin-bound fluorescent proteins, the chromophore is noncovalently bound to the protein. We provide here a molecular rationale for the observed spectral properties of Sandercyanin. PMID:27688756

  2. Highlights of the optical highlighter fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Patterson, G H

    2011-07-01

    The development of super-resolution microscopy techniques using molecular localization, such as photoactivated localization microscopy, fluorescence photoactivated localization microscopy, stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy, photoactivated localization microscopy with independent running acquisition and many others, has heightened interest in molecules that will be grouped here into a category referred to as 'optical highlighter' fluorescent proteins. This review will survey many of the advances in development of fluorescent proteins for optically highlighting sub-populations of fluorescently labelled molecules.

  3. Scaffold preferences of mesenchymal stromal cells and adipose-derived stem cells from green fluorescent protein transgenic mice influence the tissue engineering of bone.

    PubMed

    Wittenburg, Gretel; Flade, Viktoria; Garbe, Annette I; Lauer, Günter; Labudde, Dirk

    2014-05-01

    We have analysed the growth and differentiation of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) from bone marrow, and of adipose derived stem cells (ASC) from murine abdominal fat tissue, of green fluorescent protein (GFP) transgenic animals grown directly on two types of hydroxyapatite ceramic bone substitutes. BONITmatrix® and NanoBone® have specific mechanical and physiochemical properties such as porosity and an inner surface that influence cellular growth. Both MSC and ASC were separately seeded on 200mg of each biomaterial and cultured for 3 weeks under osteogenic differentiation conditions. The degree of mineralisation was assessed by alizarin red dye and the specific alkaline phosphatase activity of the differentiated cells. The morphology of the cells was examined by scanning electron microscopy and confocal microscopy. The osteoblastic phenotype of the cells was confirmed by analysing the expression of bone-specific genes (Runx2, osteocalcin, osteopontin, and osteonectin) by semiquantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Comparison of BONITmatrix® and NanoBone® showed cell type-specific preferences in terms of osteogenic differentiation. MSC-derived osteoblast-like cells spread optimally on the surface of NanoBone® but not BONITmatrix® granules. In contrast BONITmatrix® granules conditioned the growth of osteoblast-like cells derived from ASC. The osteoblastic phenotype of the cultured cells on all matrices was confirmed by specific gene expression. Our results show that the in vitro growth and osteogenic differentiation of murine MSC or ASC of GFP transgenic mice are distinctly influenced by the ceramic substratum. While NanoBone® granules support the proliferation and differentiation of murine MSC isolated from bone marrow, the growth of murine ASC is supported by BONITmatrix® granules. NanoBone® is therefore recommended for use as scaffold in tissue engineering that requires MSC, whereas ASC can be combined with BONITmatrix® for

  4. Guide to Red Fluorescent Proteins and Biosensors for Flow Cytometry

    PubMed Central

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2014-01-01

    Since the discovery of the first red fluorescent protein (RFP), named DsRed, 12 years ago, a wide pallet of red-shifted fluorescent proteins has been cloned and biotechnologically developed into monomeric fluorescent probes for optical microscopy. Several new types of monomeric RFPs that change the emission wavelength either with time, called fluorescent timers, or after a brief irradiation with violet light, known as photoactivatable proteins, have been also engineered. Moreover, RFPs with a large Stokes shift of fluorescence emission have been recently designed. Because of their distinctive excitation and fluorescence detection conditions developed specifically for microscopy, these fluorescent probes can be suboptimal for flow cytometry. Here, we have selected and summarized the advanced orange, red, and far-red fluorescent proteins with the properties specifically required for the flow cytometry applications. Their effective brightness was calculated for the laser sources available for the commercial flow cytometers and sorters. Compatibility of the fluorescent proteins of different colors in a multiparameter flow cytometry was determined. Novel FRET pairs, utilizing RFPs, RFP-based intracellular biosensors, and their application to a high-throughput screening, are also discussed. PMID:21704849

  5. Genetically Engineered Fluorescent Voltage Reporters

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Fluorescent membrane voltage indicators that enable optical imaging of neuronal circuit operations in the living mammalian brain are powerful tools for biology and particularly neuroscience. Classical voltage-sensitive dyes, typically low molecular-weight organic compounds, have been in widespread use for decades but are limited by issues related to optical noise, the lack of generally applicable procedures that enable staining of specific cell populations, and difficulties in performing imaging experiments over days and weeks. Genetically encoded voltage indicators (GEVIs) represent a newer alternative that overcomes several of the limitations inherent to classical voltage-sensitive dyes. We critically review the fundamental concepts of this approach, the variety of available probes and their state of development. PMID:22896802

  6. 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

  7. Metal-enhanced fluorescence of single green fluorescent protein (GFP)

    SciTech Connect

    Fu Yi; Zhang Jian; Lakowicz, Joseph R.

    2008-11-28

    The green fluorescent protein (GFP) has emerged as a powerful reporter molecule for monitoring gene expression, protein localization, and protein-protein interaction. However, the detection of low concentrations of GFPs is limited by the weakness of the fluorescent signal and the low photostability. In this report, we observed the proximity of single GFPs to metallic silver nanoparticles increases its fluorescence intensity approximately 6-fold and decreases the decay time. Single protein molecules on the silvered surfaces emitted 10-fold more photons as compared to glass prior to photobleaching. The photostability of single GFP has increased to some extent. Accordingly, we observed longer duration time and suppressed blinking. The single-molecule lifetime histograms indicate the relatively heterogeneous distributions of protein mutants inside the structure.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Coral Fluorescent Proteins as Antioxidants

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, Caroline V.; Modi, Chintan K.; Mydlarz, Laura D.

    2009-01-01

    Background A wide array of fluorescent proteins (FP) is present in anthozoans, although their biochemical characteristics and function in host tissue remain to be determined. Upregulation of FP's frequently occurs in injured or compromised coral tissue, suggesting a potential role of coral FPs in host stress responses. Methodology/Principal Findings The presence of FPs was determined and quantified for a subsample of seven healthy Caribbean coral species using spectral emission analysis of tissue extracts. FP concentration was correlated with the in vivo antioxidant potential of the tissue extracts by quantifying the hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) scavenging rates. FPs of the seven species varied in both type and abundance and demonstrated a positive correlation between H2O2 scavenging rate and FP concentration. To validate this data, the H2O2 scavenging rates of four pure scleractinian FPs, cyan (CFP), green (GFP), red (RFP) and chromoprotein (CP), and their mutant counterparts (without chromophores), were investigated. In vitro, each FP scavenged H2O2 with the most efficient being CP followed by equivalent activity of CFP and RFP. Scavenging was significantly higher in all mutant counterparts. Conclusions/Significance Both naturally occurring and pure coral FPs have significant H2O2 scavenging activity. The higher scavenging rate of RFP and the CP in vitro is consistent with observed increases of these specific FPs in areas of compromised coral tissue. However, the greater scavenging ability of the mutant counterparts suggests additional roles of scleractinian FPs, potentially pertaining to their color. This study documents H2O2 scavenging of scleractinian FPs, a novel biochemical characteristic, both in vivo across multiple species and in vitro with purified proteins. These data support a role for FPs in coral stress and immune responses and highlights the multi-functionality of these conspicuous proteins. PMID:19806218

  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. Green fluorescent protein as a quantitative tool.

    PubMed

    Hack, N J; Billups, B; Guthrie, P B; Rogers, J H; Muir, E M; Parks, T N; Kater, S B

    2000-02-15

    Manipulating the expression of a protein can provide a powerful tool for understanding its function, provided that the protein is expressed at physiologically-significant concentrations. We have developed a simple method to measure (1) the concentration of an overexpressed protein in single cells and (2) the covariation of particular physiological properties with a protein's expression. As an example of how this method can be used, teratocarcinoma cells were transfected with the neuron-specific calcium binding protein calretinin (CR) tagged with green fluorescent protein (GFP). By measuring GFP fluorescence in microcapillaries, we created a standard curve for GFP fluorescence that permitted quantification of CR concentrations in individual cells. Fura-2 measurements in the same cells showed a strong positive correlation between CR-GFP fusion protein expression levels and calcium clearance capacity. This method should allow reliable quantitative analysis of GFP fusion protein expression.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:25972078

  16. Fluorescent protein integrated white LEDs for displays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Press, Daniel Aaron; Melikov, Rustamzhon; Conkar, Deniz; Nur Firat-Karalar, Elif; Nizamoglu, Sedat

    2016-11-01

    The usage time of displays (e.g., TVs, mobile phones, etc) is in general shorter than their functional life time, which worsens the electronic waste (e-waste) problem around the world. The integration of biomaterials into electronics can help to reduce the e-waste problem. In this study, we demonstrate fluorescent protein integrated white LEDs to use as a backlight source for liquid crystal (LC) displays for the first time. We express and purify enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) and monomeric Cherry protein (mCherry), and afterward we integrate these proteins as a wavelength-converter on a blue LED chip. The protein-integrated backlight exhibits a high luminous efficacy of 248 lm/Wopt and the area of the gamut covers 80% of the NTSC color gamut. The resultant colors and objects in the image on the display can be well observed and distinguished. Therefore, fluorescent proteins show promise for display applications.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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).

  1. 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.

  2. Use of fluorescent Ca2+ dyes with green fluorescent protein and its variants: problems and solutions.

    PubMed Central

    Bolsover, S; Ibrahim, O; O'luanaigh, N; Williams, H; Cockcroft, S

    2001-01-01

    We have studied the degree to which fluorescent Ca(2+) indicator dyes, and green fluorescent protein and its variants, can be used together. We find that the most commonly used fluorescent protein, enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), seriously contaminates fura 2 signals. We suggest two alternative combinations for which there is no detectable contamination of the Ca(2+) indicator signal by the fluorescent protein. Blue fluorescent protein can be used with the Ca(2+) indicator Fura Red; EGFP can be used with the Ca(2+) indicator X-Rhod 1. The use of these combinations will permit the accurate measurement of Ca(2+) signals in cells transfected with fluorescent proteins. PMID:11368760

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Diversity and evolution of coral fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Alieva, Naila O; Konzen, Karen A; Field, Steven F; Meleshkevitch, Ella A; Hunt, Marguerite E; Beltran-Ramirez, Victor; Miller, David J; Wiedenmann, Jörg; Salih, Anya; Matz, Mikhail V

    2008-07-16

    GFP-like fluorescent proteins (FPs) are the key color determinants in reef-building corals (class Anthozoa, order Scleractinia) and are of considerable interest as potential genetically encoded fluorescent labels. Here we report 40 additional members of the GFP family from corals. There are three major paralogous lineages of coral FPs. One of them is retained in all sampled coral families and is responsible for the non-fluorescent purple-blue color, while each of the other two evolved a full complement of typical coral fluorescent colors (cyan, green, and red) and underwent sorting between coral groups. Among the newly cloned proteins are a "chromo-red" color type from Echinopora forskaliana (family Faviidae) and pink chromoprotein from Stylophora pistillata (Pocilloporidae), both evolving independently from the rest of coral chromoproteins. There are several cyan FPs that possess a novel kind of excitation spectrum indicating a neutral chromophore ground state, for which the residue E167 is responsible (numeration according to GFP from A. victoria). The chromoprotein from Acropora millepora is an unusual blue instead of purple, which is due to two mutations: S64C and S183T. We applied a novel probabilistic sampling approach to recreate the common ancestor of all coral FPs as well as the more derived common ancestor of three main fluorescent colors of the Faviina suborder. Both proteins were green such as found elsewhere outside class Anthozoa. Interestingly, a substantial fraction of the all-coral ancestral protein had a chromohore apparently locked in a non-fluorescent neutral state, which may reflect the transitional stage that enabled rapid color diversification early in the history of coral FPs. Our results highlight the extent of convergent or parallel evolution of the color diversity in corals, provide the foundation for experimental studies of evolutionary processes that led to color diversification, and enable a comparative analysis of structural

  6. Diversity and Evolution of Coral Fluorescent Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Alieva, Naila O.; Konzen, Karen A.; Field, Steven F.; Meleshkevitch, Ella A.; Hunt, Marguerite E.; Beltran-Ramirez, Victor; Miller, David J.; Wiedenmann, Jörg; Salih, Anya; Matz, Mikhail V.

    2008-01-01

    GFP-like fluorescent proteins (FPs) are the key color determinants in reef-building corals (class Anthozoa, order Scleractinia) and are of considerable interest as potential genetically encoded fluorescent labels. Here we report 40 additional members of the GFP family from corals. There are three major paralogous lineages of coral FPs. One of them is retained in all sampled coral families and is responsible for the non-fluorescent purple-blue color, while each of the other two evolved a full complement of typical coral fluorescent colors (cyan, green, and red) and underwent sorting between coral groups. Among the newly cloned proteins are a “chromo-red” color type from Echinopora forskaliana (family Faviidae) and pink chromoprotein from Stylophora pistillata (Pocilloporidae), both evolving independently from the rest of coral chromoproteins. There are several cyan FPs that possess a novel kind of excitation spectrum indicating a neutral chromophore ground state, for which the residue E167 is responsible (numeration according to GFP from A. victoria). The chromoprotein from Acropora millepora is an unusual blue instead of purple, which is due to two mutations: S64C and S183T. We applied a novel probabilistic sampling approach to recreate the common ancestor of all coral FPs as well as the more derived common ancestor of three main fluorescent colors of the Faviina suborder. Both proteins were green such as found elsewhere outside class Anthozoa. Interestingly, a substantial fraction of the all-coral ancestral protein had a chromohore apparently locked in a non-fluorescent neutral state, which may reflect the transitional stage that enabled rapid color diversification early in the history of coral FPs. Our results highlight the extent of convergent or parallel evolution of the color diversity in corals, provide the foundation for experimental studies of evolutionary processes that led to color diversification, and enable a comparative analysis of structural

  7. Imaging the environment of green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed Central

    Suhling, Klaus; Siegel, Jan; Phillips, David; French, Paul M W; Lévêque-Fort, Sandrine; Webb, Stephen E D; Davis, Daniel M

    2002-01-01

    An emerging theme in cell biology is that cell surface receptors need to be considered as part of supramolecular complexes of proteins and lipids facilitating specific receptor conformations and distinct distributions, e.g., at the immunological synapse. Thus, a new goal is to develop bioimaging that not only locates proteins in live cells but can also probe their environment. Such a technique is demonstrated here using fluorescence lifetime imaging of green fluorescent protein (GFP). We first show, by time-correlated single-photon counting, that the fluorescence decay of GFP depends on the local refractive index. This is in agreement with the Strickler Berg formula, relating the Einstein A and B coefficients for absorption and spontaneous emission in molecules. We then quantitatively image, by wide-field time-gated fluorescence lifetime imaging, the refractive index of the environment of GFP. This novel approach paves the way for imaging the biophysical environment of specific GFP-tagged proteins in live cells. PMID:12496126

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. A Guide to Fluorescent Protein FRET Pairs.

    PubMed

    Bajar, Bryce T; Wang, Emily S; Zhang, Shu; Lin, Michael Z; Chu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Förster or fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) technology and genetically encoded FRET biosensors provide a powerful tool for visualizing signaling molecules in live cells with high spatiotemporal resolution. Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are most commonly used as both donor and acceptor fluorophores in FRET biosensors, especially since FPs are genetically encodable and live-cell compatible. In this review, we will provide an overview of methods to measure FRET changes in biological contexts, discuss the palette of FP FRET pairs developed and their relative strengths and weaknesses, and note important factors to consider when using FPs for FRET studies.

  11. A Guide to Fluorescent Protein FRET Pairs

    PubMed Central

    Bajar, Bryce T.; Wang, Emily S.; Zhang, Shu; Lin, Michael Z.; Chu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Förster or fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) technology and genetically encoded FRET biosensors provide a powerful tool for visualizing signaling molecules in live cells with high spatiotemporal resolution. Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are most commonly used as both donor and acceptor fluorophores in FRET biosensors, especially since FPs are genetically encodable and live-cell compatible. In this review, we will provide an overview of methods to measure FRET changes in biological contexts, discuss the palette of FP FRET pairs developed and their relative strengths and weaknesses, and note important factors to consider when using FPs for FRET studies. PMID:27649177

  12. A Guide to Fluorescent Protein FRET Pairs.

    PubMed

    Bajar, Bryce T; Wang, Emily S; Zhang, Shu; Lin, Michael Z; Chu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Förster or fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) technology and genetically encoded FRET biosensors provide a powerful tool for visualizing signaling molecules in live cells with high spatiotemporal resolution. Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are most commonly used as both donor and acceptor fluorophores in FRET biosensors, especially since FPs are genetically encodable and live-cell compatible. In this review, we will provide an overview of methods to measure FRET changes in biological contexts, discuss the palette of FP FRET pairs developed and their relative strengths and weaknesses, and note important factors to consider when using FPs for FRET studies. PMID:27649177

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Chromophore photophysics and dynamics in fluorescent proteins of the GFP family.

    PubMed

    Nienhaus, Karin; Nienhaus, G Ulrich

    2016-11-01

    Proteins of the green fluorescent protein (GFP) family are indispensable for fluorescence imaging experiments in the life sciences, particularly of living specimens. Their essential role as genetically encoded fluorescence markers has motivated many researchers over the last 20 years to further advance and optimize these proteins by using protein engineering. Amino acids can be exchanged by site-specific mutagenesis, starting with naturally occurring proteins as templates. Optical properties of the fluorescent chromophore are strongly tuned by the surrounding protein environment, and a targeted modification of chromophore-protein interactions requires a profound knowledge of the underlying photophysics and photochemistry, which has by now been well established from a large number of structural and spectroscopic experiments and molecular-mechanical and quantum-mechanical computations on many variants of fluorescent proteins. Nevertheless, such rational engineering often does not meet with success and thus is complemented by random mutagenesis and selection based on the optical properties. In this topical review, we present an overview of the key structural and spectroscopic properties of fluorescent proteins. We address protein-chromophore interactions that govern ground state optical properties as well as processes occurring in the electronically excited state. Special emphasis is placed on photoactivation of fluorescent proteins. These light-induced reactions result in large structural changes that drastically alter the fluorescence properties of the protein, which enables some of the most exciting applications, including single particle tracking, pulse chase imaging and super-resolution imaging. We also present a few examples of fluorescent protein application in live-cell imaging experiments. PMID:27604321

  18. Chromophore photophysics and dynamics in fluorescent proteins of the GFP family

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nienhaus, Karin; Nienhaus, G. Ulrich

    2016-11-01

    Proteins of the green fluorescent protein (GFP) family are indispensable for fluorescence imaging experiments in the life sciences, particularly of living specimens. Their essential role as genetically encoded fluorescence markers has motivated many researchers over the last 20 years to further advance and optimize these proteins by using protein engineering. Amino acids can be exchanged by site-specific mutagenesis, starting with naturally occurring proteins as templates. Optical properties of the fluorescent chromophore are strongly tuned by the surrounding protein environment, and a targeted modification of chromophore-protein interactions requires a profound knowledge of the underlying photophysics and photochemistry, which has by now been well established from a large number of structural and spectroscopic experiments and molecular-mechanical and quantum-mechanical computations on many variants of fluorescent proteins. Nevertheless, such rational engineering often does not meet with success and thus is complemented by random mutagenesis and selection based on the optical properties. In this topical review, we present an overview of the key structural and spectroscopic properties of fluorescent proteins. We address protein-chromophore interactions that govern ground state optical properties as well as processes occurring in the electronically excited state. Special emphasis is placed on photoactivation of fluorescent proteins. These light-induced reactions result in large structural changes that drastically alter the fluorescence properties of the protein, which enables some of the most exciting applications, including single particle tracking, pulse chase imaging and super-resolution imaging. We also present a few examples of fluorescent protein application in live-cell imaging experiments.

  19. 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.

  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. 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

  2. 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

    2016-03-18

    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.

  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. Generation of red fluorescent protein transgenic dogs.

    PubMed

    Hong, So Gun; Kim, Min Kyu; Jang, Goo; Oh, Hyun Ju; Park, Jung Eun; Kang, Jung Taek; Koo, Ok Jae; Kim, Teoan; Kwon, Mo Sun; Koo, Bon Chul; Ra, Jeong Chan; Kim, Dae Yong; Ko, CheMyong; Lee, Byeong Chun

    2009-05-01

    Dogs (Canis familiaris) share many common genetic diseases with humans and development of disease models using a transgenic approach has long been awaited. However, due to the technical difficulty in obtaining fertilizable eggs and the unavailability of embryonic stem cells, no transgenic dog has been generated. Canine fetal fibroblasts were stably transfected with a red fluorescent protein (RFP) gene-expressing construct using retrovirus gene delivery method. Somatic cell nuclear transfer was then employed to replace the nucleus of an oocyte with the nucleus of the RFP-fibroblasts. Using this approach, we produced the first generation of transgenic dogs with four female and two male expressing RFP.

  5. Photoactivation and imaging of optical highlighter fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Patterson, George H

    2011-07-01

    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.

  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. Efficient colonization of plant roots by the plant growth promoting bacterium Bacillus amyloliquefaciens FZB42, engineered to express green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Fan, Ben; Chen, Xiao Hua; Budiharjo, Anto; Bleiss, Wilfrid; Vater, Joachim; Borriss, Rainer

    2011-02-20

    A single copy of the gfp gene linked with the P(spac) promoter and flanked by the terminal FZB42 amyE sequences was stably integrated into the chromosome of plant growth promoting bacterium Bacillus amyloliquefaciens FZB42 via homologous recombination. A spontaneous mutant, FB01mut, emitting bright fluorescence was detected among the transformants and found suitable for colonization experiments performed with Zea mays, Arabidopsis thaliana and Lemna minor. Real-time RT-PCR revealed that FB01mut expressed 2.5 times more of the gfp transcript than the original GFP-labeled strain. Confocal laser scanning microscopy of plant roots infected with gfp+ tagged FZB42 revealed that the bacterium behaves different in colonizing surfaces of plant roots of different species. In contrast to maize, FZB42 colonized preferentially root tips when colonizing Arabidopsis. FZB42 colonized heavily Lemna fronds and roots by forming biofilms consisting of extracellular matrix and cells with altered morphology. Surfactin, but no other lipopeptide or polyketide synthesized by FZB42 under laboratory conditions, was detected in extracts of Lemna plantlets colonized by FZB42. Due to its stable and long-lasting emission of bright fluorescence without antibiotic pressure FB01mut is an excellent tool for studying plant colonization under competitive, environmental conditions.

  11. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:24886825

  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. Recent advances on in vivo imaging with fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Hoffman, Robert M

    2008-01-01

    In vivo imaging with green fluorescent protein (GFP) and other fluorescent proteins is revolutionizing cancer biology and other fields of in vivo biology (Hoffman, 2005; Hoffman and Yang, 2006a,b,c). Our laboratory pioneered the use of GFP for in vivo imaging in 1997 (Chishima et al., 1997). This chapter highlights recent developments from our laboratory on both macro and micro in vivo imaging by using fluorescent proteins.

  15. Fluorescence lifetime dynamics of enhanced green fluorescent protein in protein aggregates with expanded polyglutamine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghukasyan, Vladimir; Hsu, Chih-Chun; Liu, Chia-Rung; Kao, Fu-Jen; Cheng, Tzu-Hao

    2010-01-01

    Protein aggregation is one of the characteristic steps in a number of neurodegenerative diseases eventually leading to neuronal death and thorough study of aggregation is required for the development of effective therapy. We apply fluorescence lifetime imaging for the characterization of the fluorescence dynamics of the enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) in fusion with the polyQ-expanded polyglutamine stretch. At the expansion of polyQ above 39 residues, it has an inherent propensity to form amyloid-like fibrils and aggregates, and is responsible for Huntington's disease. The results of the experiments show that expression of the eGFP in fusion with the 97Q protein leads to the decrease of the eGFP fluorescence lifetime by ~300 ps. This phenomenon does not appear in Hsp104-deficient cells, where the aggregation in polyQ is prevented. We demonstrate that the lifetime decrease observed is related to the aggregation per se and discuss the possible role of refractive index and homo-FRET in these dynamics.

  16. 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.

  17. Cell tracking using a photoconvertible fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Hatta, Kohei; Tsujii, Hitomi; Omura, Tomomi

    2006-01-01

    The tracking of cell fate, shape and migration is an essential component in the study of the development of multicellular organisms. Here we report a protocol that uses the protein Kaede, which is fluorescent green after synthesis but can be photoconverted red by violet or UV light. We have used Kaede along with confocal laser scanning microscopy to track labeled cells in a pattern of interest in zebrafish embryos. This technique allows the visualization of cell movements and the tracing of neuronal shapes. We provide illustrative examples of expression by mRNA injection, mosaic expression by DNA injection, and the creation of permanent transgenic fish with the UAS-Gal4 system to visualize morphogenetic processes such as neurulation, placode formation and navigation of early commissural axons in the hindbrain. The procedure can be adapted to other photoconvertible and reversible fluorescent molecules, including KikGR and Dronpa; these molecules can be used in combination with two-photon confocal microscopy to specifically highlight cells buried in tissues. The total time needed to carry out the protocol involving transient expression of Kaede by injection of mRNA or DNA, photoconversion and imaging is 2-8 d.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Designed Modular Proteins as Scaffolds To Stabilize Fluorescent Nanoclusters.

    PubMed

    Couleaud, Pierre; Adan-Bermudez, Sergio; Aires, Antonio; Mejías, Sara H; Sot, Begoña; Somoza, Alvaro; Cortajarena, Aitziber L

    2015-12-14

    Proteins have been used as templates to stabilize fluorescent metal nanoclusters thus obtaining stable fluorescent structures, and their fluorescent properties being modulated by the type of protein employed. Designed consensus tetratricopeptide repeat (CTPR) proteins are suited candidates as templates for the stabilization of metal nanoclusters due to their modular structural and functional properties. Here, we have studied the ability of CTPR proteins to stabilize fluorescent gold nanoclusters giving rise to designed functional hybrid nanostructures. First, we have investigated the influence of the number of CTPR units, as well as the presence of cysteine residues in the CTPR protein, on the fluorescent properties of the protein-stabilized gold nanoclusters. Synthetic protocols to retain the protein structure and function have been developed, since the structural and functional integrity of the protein template is critical for further applications. Finally, as a proof-of-concept, a CTPR module with specific binding capabilities has been used to stabilize gold nanoclusters with positive results. Remarkably, the protein-stabilized gold nanocluster obtained combines both the fluorescence properties of the nanoclusters and the functional properties of the protein. The fluorescence changes in nanoclusters fluorescence have been successfully used as a sensor to detect when the specific ligand was recognized by the CTPR module.

  1. Quantitation of carcinogen bound protein adducts by fluorescence measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gan, Liang-Shang; Otteson, Michael S.; Doxtader, Mark M.; Skipper, Paul L.; Dasari, Ramachandra R.; Tannenbaum, Steven R.

    1989-01-01

    A highly significant correlation of aflatoxin B 1 serum albumin adduct level with daily aflatoxin B 1 intake was observed in a molecular epidemiological study of aflatoxin carcinogenesis which used conventional fluorescence spectroscopy methods for adduct quantitation. Synchronous fluorescence spectroscopy and laser induced fluorescence techniques have been employed to quantitate antibenzo[ a]pyrene diol epoxide derived globin peptide adducts. Fast and efficient methods to isolate the peptide adducts as well as eliminate protein fluorescence background are described. A detection limit of several femtomoles has been achieved. Experimental and technical considerations of low temperature synchronous fluorescence spectroscopy and fluorescence line narrowing to improve the detection sensitivities are also presented.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. A photoactivatable green-fluorescent protein from the phylum Ctenophora.

    PubMed

    Haddock, Steven H D; Mastroianni, Nadia; Christianson, Lynne M

    2010-04-22

    Genes for the family of green-fluorescent proteins (GFPs) have been found in more than 100 species of animals, with some species containing six or more copies producing a variety of colours. Thus far, however, these species have all been within three phyla: Cnidaria, Arthropoda and Chordata. We have discovered GFP-type fluorescent proteins in the phylum Ctenophora, the comb jellies. The ctenophore proteins share the xYG chromophore motif of all other characterized GFP-type proteins. These proteins exhibit the uncommon property of reversible photoactivation, in which fluorescent emission becomes brighter upon exposure to light, then gradually decays to a non-fluorescent state. In addition to providing potentially useful optical probes with novel properties, finding a fluorescent protein in one of the earliest diverging metazoans adds further support to the possibility that these genes are likely to occur throughout animals.

  5. A photoactivatable green-fluorescent protein from the phylum Ctenophora

    PubMed Central

    Haddock, Steven H. D.; Mastroianni, Nadia; Christianson, Lynne M.

    2010-01-01

    Genes for the family of green-fluorescent proteins (GFPs) have been found in more than 100 species of animals, with some species containing six or more copies producing a variety of colours. Thus far, however, these species have all been within three phyla: Cnidaria, Arthropoda and Chordata. We have discovered GFP-type fluorescent proteins in the phylum Ctenophora, the comb jellies. The ctenophore proteins share the xYG chromophore motif of all other characterized GFP-type proteins. These proteins exhibit the uncommon property of reversible photoactivation, in which fluorescent emission becomes brighter upon exposure to light, then gradually decays to a non-fluorescent state. In addition to providing potentially useful optical probes with novel properties, finding a fluorescent protein in one of the earliest diverging metazoans adds further support to the possibility that these genes are likely to occur throughout animals. PMID:20018790

  6. Fluorescent-protein-based probes: general principles and practices.

    PubMed

    Ai, Hui-Wang

    2015-01-01

    An important application of fluorescent proteins is to derive genetically encoded fluorescent probes that can actively respond to cellular dynamics such as pH change, redox signaling, calcium oscillation, enzyme activities, and membrane potential. Despite the large diverse group of fluorescent-protein-based probes, a few basic principles have been established and are shared by most of these probes. In this article, the focus is on these general principles and strategies that guide the development of fluorescent-protein-based probes. A few examples are provided in each category to illustrate the corresponding principles. Since these principles are quite straightforward, others may adapt them to create fluorescent probes for their own interest. Hopefully, the development of the ever-growing family of fluorescent-protein-based probes will no longer be limited to a small number of laboratories specialized in senor development, leading to the situation that biological studies will be bettered assisted by genetically encoded sensors.

  7. 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.

  8. Engineering Protein Farnesyltransferase for Enzymatic Protein Labeling Applications

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Creating covalent protein conjugates is an active area of research due to the wide range of uses for protein conjugates spanning everything from biological studies to protein therapeutics. Protein Farnesyltransferase (PFTase) has been used for the creation of site-specific protein conjugates, and a number of PFTase substrates have been developed to facilitate that work. PFTase is an effective catalyst for protein modification because it transfers Farnesyl diphosphate (FPP) analogues to protein substrates on a cysteine four residues from the C-terminus. While much work has been done to synthesize various FPP analogues, there are few reports investigating how mutations in PFTase alter the kinetics with these unnatural analogues. Herein we examined how different mutations within the PFTase active site alter the kinetics of the PFTase reaction with a series of large FPP analogues. We found that mutating either a single tryptophan or tyrosine residue to alanine results in greatly improved catalytic parameters, particularly in kcat. Mutation of tryptophan 102β to alanine caused a 4-fold increase in kcat and a 10-fold decrease in KM for a benzaldehyde-containing FPP analogue resulting in an overall 40-fold increase in catalytic efficiency. Similarly, mutation of tyrosine 205β to alanine caused a 25-fold increase in kcat and a 10-fold decrease in KM for a coumarin-containing analogue leading to a 300-fold increase in catalytic efficiency. Smaller but significant changes in catalytic parameters were also obtained for cyclo-octene- and NBD-containing FPP analogues. The latter compound was used to create a fluorescently labeled form of Ciliary Neurotrophic Factor (CNTF), a protein of therapeutic importance. Additionally, computational modeling was performed to study how the large non-natural isoprenoid analogues can fit into the active sites enlarged via mutagenesis. Overall, these results demonstrate that PFTase can be improved via mutagenesis in ways that will be useful

  9. Fluorescence study of Escherichia coli cyclic AMP receptor protein.

    PubMed

    Wasylewski, M; Małecki, J; Wasylewski, Z

    1995-07-01

    Time-resolved, steady-state fluorescence and fluorescence-detected circular dichroism (FDCD) have been used to resolve the fluorescence contributions of the two tryptophan residues, Trp-13 and Trp-85, in the cyclic AMP receptor protein (CRP). The iodide and acrylamide quenching data show that in CRP one tryptophan residue, Trp-85, is buried within the protein matrix and the other, Trp-13, is moderately exposed on the surface of the protein. Fluorescence-quenching-resolved spectra show that Trp-13 has emission at about 350 nm and contributes 76-83% to the total fluorescence emission. The Trp-85, unquenchable by iodide and acrylamide, has the fluorescence emission at about 337 nm. The time-resolved fluorescence measurements show that Trp-13 has a longer fluorescence decay time. The Trp-85 exhibits a shorter fluorescence decay time. In the CRP-cAMP complex the Trp-85, previously buried in the apoprotein becomes totally exposed to the iodide and acrylamide quenchers. The FDCD spectra indicate that in the CRP-cAMP complex Trp-85 remains in the same environment as in the protein alone. It has been proposed that the binding of cAMP to CRP is accompanied by a hinge reorientation of two protein domains. This allows for penetration of the quencher molecules into the Trp-85 residue previously buried in the protein matrix. PMID:8590598

  10. Identification of a Fluorescent Protein from Rhacostoma Atlantica.

    PubMed

    Tota, Michael R; Allen, Jeanna M; Karolin, Jan O; Geddes, Chris D; Ward, William W

    2016-09-01

    We have cloned a novel fluorescent protein from the jellyfish Rhacostoma atlantica. The closest known related fluorescent protein is the Phialidium yellow fluorescent protein, with only a 55% amino acid sequence identity. A somewhat unusual alanine-tyrosine-glycine amino acid sequence forms the presumed chromophore of the novel protein. The protein has an absorption peak at 466 nm and a fluorescence emission peak at 498 nm. The fluorescence quantum yield was measured to be 0.77 and the extinction coefficient is 58 200 M(-1) cm(-1) . Several mutations were identified that shift the absorption peak to about 494 nm and the emission peak to between 512 and 514 nm. PMID:27288884

  11. High expression of green fluorescent protein in Pichia pastoris leads to formation of fluorescent particles.

    PubMed

    Lenassi Zupan, Ana; Trobec, Sonja; Gaberc-Porekar, Vladka; Menart, Viktor

    2004-04-01

    Wild type gene for green fluorescent protein (GFP) was stably integrated into the Pichia pastoris genome and yielded an expression level of over 40% of total cellular protein. The high cytoplasmic concentration of fluorescent (properly folded and processed) GFP caused the formation of fluorescent spherical structures, which could be observed by fluorescence or confocal microscopy after controlled permeabilization of the yeast cells with 0.2% N-lauroyl sarcosine (NLS). Fluorescent GFP particles were also isolated after removal of the cell wall and found to be quite resistant to 0.2% N-lauroyl sarcosine. SDS-PAGE analysis of the isolated fluorescent particles revealed the presence of an 80 kDa protein (alcohol oxidase) and GFP (30%). We conclude that GFP is able to enter spontaneously into the peroxisomes and is inserted into densely packed layers of alcohol oxidase. Consequently, the formation of similar fluorescent particles can also be expected in other organisms when using high-level expression systems. As GFP is widely used in fusion with other proteins as a reporter for protein localization and for many other applications in biotechnology, care must be taken to avoid false interpretations of targeting or trafficking mechanisms inside the cells. In addition, when whole cells or cytoplasmic fractions are used for the quantitative determination of GFP levels, incorrect and misleading values of GFP could be obtained due to the formation of fluorescent particles containing material inside which is not available for fluorescence measurements.

  12. 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

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-12-01

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    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. PMID:24311592

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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…

  2. 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,…

  3. A never ending race for new and improved fluorescent proteins

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Bioluminescent and fluorescent proteins are now used as tools for research in all organisms. There has been massive progress over the past 15 years in creating a palette of fluorescent proteins with a wide spectrum of specific properties. One of the big challenges is to decide which variant may be best for a certain application. A recent article by Mann et al. in BMC Biotechnology describes a new orange fluorescent protein in plants. See research article http://www.biomedcentral.com/1472-6750/12/17 PMID:22554191

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Quantification of photosensitized singlet oxygen production by a fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Ragàs, Xavier; Cooper, Laurie P; White, John H; Nonell, Santi; Flors, Cristina

    2011-01-17

    Fluorescent proteins are increasingly becoming actuators in a range of cell biology techniques. One of those techniques is chromophore-assisted laser inactivation (CALI), which is employed to specifically inactivate the function of target proteins or organelles by producing photochemical damage. CALI is achieved by the irradiation of dyes that are able to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS). The combination of CALI and the labelling specificity that fluorescent proteins provide is useful to avoid uncontrolled photodamage, although the inactivation mechanisms by ROS are dependent on the fluorescent protein and are not fully understood. Herein, we present a quantitative study of the ability of the red fluorescent protein TagRFP to produce ROS, in particular singlet oxygen ((1)O(2)). TagRFP is able to photosensitize (1)O(2) with an estimated quantum yield of 0.004. This is the first estimation of a quantum yield of (1)O(2) production value for a GFP-like protein. We also find that TagRFP has a short triplet lifetime compared to EGFP, which reflects relatively high oxygen accessibility to the chromophore. The insight into the structural and photophysical properties of TagRFP has implications in improving fluorescent proteins for fluorescence microscopy and CALI. PMID:21226197

  11. 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…

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Far-red fluorescent tag for protein labelling.

    PubMed

    Fradkov, Arkady F; Verkhusha, Vladislav V; Staroverov, Dmitry B; Bulina, Maria E; Yanushevich, Yurii G; Martynov, Vladimir I; Lukyanov, Sergey; Lukyanov, Konstantin A

    2002-11-15

    Practical applications of green fluorescent protein ('GFP')-like fluorescent proteins (FPs) from species of the class Anthozoa (sea anemones, corals and sea pens) are strongly restricted owing to their oligomeric nature. Here we suggest a strategy to overcome this problem by the use of two covalently linked identical red FPs as non-oligomerizing fusion tags. We have applied this approach to the dimeric far-red fluorescent protein HcRed1 and have demonstrated superiority of the tandem tag in the in vivo labelling of fine cytoskeletal structures and tiny nucleoli. In addition, a possibility of effective fluorescence resonance energy transfer ('FRET') between enhanced yellow FP mutant ('EYFP') and tandem HcRed1 was demonstrated in a protease assay.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Fluorescence quantum yield measurements of fluorescent proteins: a laboratory experiment for a biochemistry or molecular biophysics laboratory course.

    PubMed

    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 absorbed photons into emitted photons and it is necessary to know for assessing what fluorescent protein is the most appropriate for a particular application. In this work, we have designed an upper-level, biochemistry laboratory experiment where students measure the fluorescence quantum yields of fluorescent proteins relative to a standard organic dye. Four fluorescent protein variants, enhanced cyan fluorescent protein (ECFP), enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), mCitrine, and mCherry, were used, however the methods described are useful for the characterization of any fluorescent protein or could be expanded to fluorescent quantum yield measurements of organic dye molecules. The laboratory is designed as a guided inquiry project and takes two, 4 hr laboratory periods. During the first day students design the experiment by selecting the excitation wavelength, choosing the standard, and determining the concentration needed for the quantum yield experiment that takes place in the second laboratory period. Overall, this laboratory provides students with a guided inquiry learning experience and introduces concepts of fluorescence biophysics into a biochemistry laboratory curriculum.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Protein-engineered biomaterials: highly tunable tissue engineering scaffolds.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Debanti; Heilshorn, Sarah C

    2010-06-01

    A common goal in tissue engineering is to attain the ability to tailor specific cell-scaffold interactions and thereby gain control over cell behavior. The tunable nature of protein-engineered biomaterials enables independent tailoring of a range of biomaterial properties, creating an attractive alternative to synthetic polymeric scaffolds or harvested natural scaffolds. Protein-engineered biomaterials are comprised of modular peptide domains with various functionalities that are encoded into a DNA plasmid, transfected into an organism of choice, and expressed and purified to yield a biopolymer with exact molecular-level sequence specification. Because of the modular design strategy of protein-engineered biomaterials, these scaffolds can be easily modified to enable optimization for specific tissue engineering applications. By including multiple peptide domains with different functionalities in a single, modular biomaterial, the scaffolds can be designed to mimic the diverse properties of the natural extracellular matrix, including cell adhesion, cell signaling, elasticity, and biodegradability. Recently, the field of protein-engineered biomaterials has expanded to include functional modules that are not normally present in the extracellular matrix, thus expanding the scope and functionality of these materials. For example, these modules can include noncanonical amino acids, inorganic-binding domains, and DNA-binding sequences. The modularity, tunability, and sequence specificity of protein-engineered biomaterials make them attractive candidates for use as substrates for a variety of tissue engineering applications. PMID:20141386

  6. 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.

  7. Enhanced Archaerhodopsin Fluorescent Protein Voltage Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Yiyang; Li, Jin Zhong; Schnitzer, Mark J.

    2013-01-01

    A longstanding goal in neuroscience has been to develop techniques for imaging the voltage dynamics of genetically defined subsets of neurons. Optical sensors of transmembrane voltage would enhance studies of neural activity in contexts ranging from individual neurons cultured in vitro to neuronal populations in awake-behaving animals. Recent progress has identified Archaerhodopsin (Arch) based sensors as a promising, genetically encoded class of fluorescent voltage indicators that can report single action potentials. Wild-type Arch exhibits sub-millisecond fluorescence responses to trans-membrane voltage, but its light-activated proton pump also responds to the imaging illumination. An Arch mutant (Arch-D95N) exhibits no photocurrent, but has a slower, ~40 ms response to voltage transients. Here we present Arch-derived voltage sensors with trafficking signals that enhance their localization to the neural membrane. We also describe Arch mutant sensors (Arch-EEN and -EEQ) that exhibit faster kinetics and greater fluorescence dynamic range than Arch-D95N, and no photocurrent at the illumination intensities normally used for imaging. We benchmarked these voltage sensors regarding their spike detection fidelity by using a signal detection theoretic framework that takes into account the experimentally measured photon shot noise and optical waveforms for single action potentials. This analysis revealed that by combining the sequence mutations and enhanced trafficking sequences, the new sensors improved the fidelity of spike detection by nearly three-fold in comparison to Arch-D95N. PMID:23840563

  8. 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

  9. Rational design of a monomeric and photostable far-red fluorescent protein for fluorescence imaging in vivo.

    PubMed

    Yu, Dan; Dong, Zhiqiang; Gustafson, William Clay; Ruiz-González, Rubén; Signor, Luca; Marzocca, Fanny; Borel, Franck; Klassen, Matthew P; Makhijani, Kalpana; Royant, Antoine; Jan, Yuh-Nung; Weiss, William A; Guo, Su; Shu, Xiaokun

    2016-02-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are powerful tools for cell and molecular biology. Here based on structural analysis, a blue-shifted mutant of a recently engineered monomeric infrared fluorescent protein (mIFP) has been rationally designed. This variant, named iBlueberry, bears a single mutation that shifts both excitation and emission spectra by approximately 40 nm. Furthermore, iBlueberry is four times more photostable than mIFP, rendering it more advantageous for imaging protein dynamics. By tagging iBlueberry to centrin, it has been demonstrated that the fusion protein labels the centrosome in the developing zebrafish embryo. Together with GFP-labeled nucleus and tdTomato-labeled plasma membrane, time-lapse imaging to visualize the dynamics of centrosomes in radial glia neural progenitors in the intact zebrafish brain has been demonstrated. It is further shown that iBlueberry can be used together with mIFP in two-color protein labeling in living cells and in two-color tumor labeling in mice.

  10. Rational design of a monomeric and photostable far-red fluorescent protein for fluorescence imaging in vivo.

    PubMed

    Yu, Dan; Dong, Zhiqiang; Gustafson, William Clay; Ruiz-González, Rubén; Signor, Luca; Marzocca, Fanny; Borel, Franck; Klassen, Matthew P; Makhijani, Kalpana; Royant, Antoine; Jan, Yuh-Nung; Weiss, William A; Guo, Su; Shu, Xiaokun

    2016-02-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are powerful tools for cell and molecular biology. Here based on structural analysis, a blue-shifted mutant of a recently engineered monomeric infrared fluorescent protein (mIFP) has been rationally designed. This variant, named iBlueberry, bears a single mutation that shifts both excitation and emission spectra by approximately 40 nm. Furthermore, iBlueberry is four times more photostable than mIFP, rendering it more advantageous for imaging protein dynamics. By tagging iBlueberry to centrin, it has been demonstrated that the fusion protein labels the centrosome in the developing zebrafish embryo. Together with GFP-labeled nucleus and tdTomato-labeled plasma membrane, time-lapse imaging to visualize the dynamics of centrosomes in radial glia neural progenitors in the intact zebrafish brain has been demonstrated. It is further shown that iBlueberry can be used together with mIFP in two-color protein labeling in living cells and in two-color tumor labeling in mice. PMID:26549191

  11. Structural basis of enhanced photoconversion yield in green fluorescent protein-like protein Dendra2.

    PubMed

    Adam, Virgile; Nienhaus, Karin; Bourgeois, Dominique; Nienhaus, G Ulrich

    2009-06-01

    Dendra2 is an engineered, monomeric GFP-like protein that belongs to a subclass of fluorescent proteins undergoing irreversible photoconversion from a green- to a red-emitting state upon exposure to purple-blue light. This photoinduced process occurs only in the neutral state of the chromophore and is known to result from backbone cleavage accompanied by an extension of the delocalized pi-electron system. We have measured the X-ray structure of the green species of Dendra2 and performed a comprehensive characterization of the optical absorption and fluorescence properties of the protein in both its green and red forms. The structure, which is very similar to those reported for the closely related proteins EosFP and Kaede, revealed a local structural change involving mainly Arg66 and a water molecule W4, which are part of a charged and hydrogen-bonded cluster of amino acids and water molecules next to the chromophore. Unlike in EosFP and Kaede, Arg66 of Dendra2 does not contribute to negative charge stabilization on the imidazolinone ring by hydrogen bonding to the imidazolinone carbonyl. This structural change may explain the blue shift of the absorption and emission bands, as well as the markedly higher pKs of the hydroxyphenyl moiety of the chromophore, which were determined as 7.1 and 7.5 for the green and red species, respectively. The action spectrum of photoconversion coincides with the absorption band of the neutral species. Consequently, its 20-fold enhancement in Dendra2 at physiological pH accounts for the higher photoconversion yield of this protein as compared to EosFP.

  12. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer between green fluorescent protein and doxorubicin enabled by DNA nanotechnology.

    PubMed

    Heger, Zbynek; Kominkova, Marketa; Cernei, Natalia; Krejcova, Ludmila; Kopel, Pavel; Zitka, Ondrej; Adam, Vojtech; Kizek, Rene

    2014-12-01

    DNA nanotechnology is a rapidly growing research area, where DNA may be used for wide range of applications such as construction of nanodevices serving for large scale of diverse purposes. Likewise a panel of various purified fluorescent proteins is investigated for their ability to emit their typical fluorescence spectra under influence of particular excitation. Hence these proteins may form ideal donor molecules for assembly of fluorescence resonance emission transfer (FRET) constructions. To extend the application possibilities of fluorescent proteins, while using DNA nanotechnology, we developed nanoconstruction comprising green fluorescent protein (GFP) bound onto surface of surface active nanomaghemite and functionalized with gold nanoparticles. We took advantage of natural affinity between gold and thiol moieties, which were modified to bind DNA fragment. Finally we enclosed doxorubicin into fullerene cages. Doxorubicin intercalated in DNA fragment bound on the particles and thus we were able to connect these parts together. Because GFP behaved as a donor and doxorubicin as an acceptor using excitation wavelength for GFP (395 nm) in emission wavelength of doxorubicin (590 nm) FRET was observed. This nanoconstruction may serve as a double-labeled transporter of doxorubicin guided by force of external magnetic force owing to the presence of nanomaghemite. Further nanomaghemite offers the possibility of using this technology for thermotherapy.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) imaging of a single living cell using green fluorescent protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Periasamy, Ammasi; Kay, Steve A.; Day, Richard N.

    1997-05-01

    Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) imaging microscopy is a unique tool to visualize the spatiotemporal dynamics of protein interactions in living cells. Genetic vectors that encode protein fusions with green fluorescent protein (GFP) provide a method for imaging protein localization in living cells. We used FRET to study dimerization of the pituitary-specific transcription factor Pit-1 fused to GFP and BFP. A fusion protein containing GFP separated from BFP by 29 amino acids served as a positive control for FRET. Transcriptional activity of the GFP- and BFP-Pit-1 fusion proteins was demonstrated by their ability to activate the prolactin gene promoter. Using optimized excitation and emission filters, cells expressing the fluorescently-tagged Pit-1 proteins were imaged with a back- thinned, back-illuminated CCD chip that has about 50% quantum efficiency in the blue range. 2D FRET images acquired at the focal plane demonstrated Pit-1 protein associations in the nucleus of living cells. The significance of 2- and 3-D energy transfer imaging from these living cells is discussed.

  16. Heterogeneity and restricted state selection in FRET with fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blacker, T. S.; Duchen, M. R.; Bain, A. J.

    2016-02-01

    Most fluorescent proteins exhibit multi-exponential fluorescence decays, indicating the presence of a heterogeneous excited state population. In the analysis of FRET to and between fluorescent proteins, it is often convenient to assume that a single interaction pathway is involved. However, in recent work we have shown that this assumption does not hold. Moreover, certain pathways can be highly constrained, leading to the potential misinterpretation of experimental data concerning protein-protein interactions. FRET and single-photon absorption both obey the same global electric dipole selection rules but differ greatly in the mechanism of the acceptor photoselection. In an isotropic medium, single-photon excitation accesses all acceptor transition dipole moment orientations with an equal probability. However, the FRET rate depends on the relative orientation of the donor and acceptor through the κ2 orientation parameter. We show how time- and spectrally- resolved fluorescence intensity and anisotropy decay measurements following direct acceptor excitation, combined with those of the interacting FRET pair, can be used to identify restricted FRET state selection and thus provide accurate measurements of protein-protein interaction dynamics.

  17. 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

  18. Monomeric red fluorescent proteins with a large Stokes shift.

    PubMed

    Piatkevich, Kiryl D; Hulit, James; Subach, Oksana M; Wu, Bin; Abdulla, Arian; Segall, Jeffrey E; Verkhusha, Vladislav V

    2010-03-23

    Two-photon microscopy has advanced fluorescence imaging of cellular processes in living animals. Fluorescent proteins in the blue-green wavelength range are widely used in two-photon microscopy; however, the use of red fluorescent proteins is limited by the low power output of Ti-Sapphire lasers above 1,000 nm. To overcome this limitation we have developed two red fluorescent proteins, LSS-mKate1 and LSS-mKate2, which possess large Stokes shifts with excitation/emission maxima at 463/624 and 460/605 nm, respectively. These LSS-mKates are characterized by high pH stability, photostability, rapid chromophore maturation, and monomeric behavior. They lack absorbance in the green region, providing an additional red color to the commonly used red fluorescent proteins. Substantial overlap between the two-photon excitation spectra of the LSS-mKates and blue-green fluorophores enables multicolor imaging using a single laser. We applied this approach to a mouse xenograft model of breast cancer to intravitally study the motility and Golgi-nucleus alignment of tumor cells as a function of their distance from blood vessels. Our data indicate that within 40 mum the breast cancer cells show significant polarization towards vessels in living mice.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. LanFP10-A, first functional fluorescent protein whose chromophore contains the elusive mutation G67A.

    PubMed

    Roldán-Salgado, Abigail; Sánchez-Barreto, Celidee; Gaytán, Paul

    2016-11-01

    Since Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) was first successfully expressed in heterologous systems in 1994, many genes encoding other natural autofluorescent proteins (AFPs) have been cloned and subsequently modified by protein engineering to improve their physicochemical properties. Throughout this twenty-two-year period, glycine 67 (Gly67) has been regarded as the only amino acid in the entire protein family that is essential for the formation of the different reported chromophores. In this work, we demonstrate that a synthetic gene encoding LanFP10-A, a natural protein encoded in the genome of the lancelet Branchiostoma floridae containing the G67A mutation, produces a heterologous, functional yellow fluorescent protein when expressed in E. coli. In contrast to LanFP10-A, LanFP6-A, a second GFP-like protein found in the lancelet genome that also contains the natural G67A mutation, was non-fluorescent.

  3. LanFP10-A, first functional fluorescent protein whose chromophore contains the elusive mutation G67A.

    PubMed

    Roldán-Salgado, Abigail; Sánchez-Barreto, Celidee; Gaytán, Paul

    2016-11-01

    Since Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) was first successfully expressed in heterologous systems in 1994, many genes encoding other natural autofluorescent proteins (AFPs) have been cloned and subsequently modified by protein engineering to improve their physicochemical properties. Throughout this twenty-two-year period, glycine 67 (Gly67) has been regarded as the only amino acid in the entire protein family that is essential for the formation of the different reported chromophores. In this work, we demonstrate that a synthetic gene encoding LanFP10-A, a natural protein encoded in the genome of the lancelet Branchiostoma floridae containing the G67A mutation, produces a heterologous, functional yellow fluorescent protein when expressed in E. coli. In contrast to LanFP10-A, LanFP6-A, a second GFP-like protein found in the lancelet genome that also contains the natural G67A mutation, was non-fluorescent. PMID:27418528

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Fluorescence-based multiplex protein detection using optically encoded microbeads.

    PubMed

    Jun, Bong-Hyun; Kang, Homan; Lee, Yoon-Sik; Jeong, Dae Hong

    2012-01-01

    Potential utilization of proteins for early detection and diagnosis of various diseases has drawn considerable interest in the development of protein-based multiplex detection techniques. Among the various techniques for high-throughput protein screening, optically-encoded beads combined with fluorescence-based target monitoring have great advantages over the planar array-based multiplexing assays. This review discusses recent developments of analytical methods of screening protein molecules on microbead-based platforms. These include various strategies such as barcoded microbeads, molecular beacon-based techniques, and surface-enhanced Raman scattering-based techniques. Their applications for label-free protein detection are also addressed. Especially, the optically-encoded beads such as multilayer fluorescence beads and SERS-encoded beads are successful for generating a large number of coding.

  8. The photochemistry of fluorescent proteins: implications for their biological applications.

    PubMed

    Seward, Harriet E; Bagshaw, Clive R

    2009-10-01

    Green fluorescent protein from Aequorea victoria, its relatives and derivatives are ubiquitous in their use as biological probes. In this tutorial review, we discuss the photochemistry of this fascinating class of proteins and illustrate some of their advantages and drawbacks in a range of applications. In particular, we focus on the ionisation states of the chromophore and how they are affected by internal and external proton transfer. Light-induced reversible and irreversible events are discussed in terms of the underlying chromophore structure. These phenomena have an influence on the interpretation of FRET (Förster resonance energy transfer), FRAP (fluorescence recovery after photobleaching), as well as single molecule studies.

  9. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-30

    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

  11. 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.

  12. Understanding Protein Folding from Advances of Fluorescence Energy Transfer.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tcherkasskaya, Olga; Gronenborn, Angela M.

    2001-03-01

    A multi-site fluorescence energy transfer method was developed for the study of protein folding. Technique uses "tyrosine-phenylalanine" substitution mutagenesis to place the "tyrosine-guest" into positions of interest into the protein structure. Tetranitromethane modification of the tyrosine-guest renders this amino acid an acceptor of the tryptophan fluorescence. This approach can be applied to any protein system, and, most importantly, does not require single- or double-labeling of the protein molecule by a donor and/or an acceptor fluorophore. It is equally suited for equilibrium as well as kinetic studies of folding. We tested the methodology to monitor the equilibrium (un)folding of the immunoglobulin binding domain B1 of streptococcal protein G (GB1) induced by guanidine hydrochloride. Wild-type GB1 contains three tyrosines located at positions 3, 33, 45 and a single tryptophan residue at position 43. Two of the three tyrosines were replaced in turn, thereby allowing us to measure the energy transfer from Trp43 to each particular tyrosine. Overall, multi-parametrical experiments on GB1 including circular dichroism, steady state and time-resolved fluorescence, as well as fluorescence energy transfer revealed the existence of highly stable unfolded intermediates, which precede the formation of the rigid (native) secondary structure.

  13. Quantum dot-fluorescent protein FRET probes for sensing intracellular pH.

    PubMed

    Dennis, Allison M; Rhee, Won Jong; Sotto, David; Dublin, Steven N; Bao, Gang

    2012-04-24

    Intracellular pH (pH(i)) plays a critical role in the physiological and pathophysiological processes of cells, and fluorescence imaging using pH-sensitive indicators provides a powerful tool to assess the pH(i) of intact cells and subcellular compartments. Here we describe a nanoparticle-based ratiometric pH sensor, comprising a bright and photostable semiconductor quantum dot (QD) and pH-sensitive fluorescent proteins (FPs), exhibiting dramatically improved sensitivity and photostability compared to BCECF, the most widely used fluorescent dye for pH imaging. We found that Förster resonance energy transfer between the QD and multiple FPs modulates the FP/QD emission ratio, exhibiting a >12-fold change between pH 6 and 8. The modularity of the probe enables customization to specific biological applications through genetic engineering of the FPs, as illustrated by the altered pH range of the probe through mutagenesis of the fluorescent protein. The QD-FP probes facilitate visualization of the acidification of endosomes in living cells following polyarginine-mediated uptake. These probes have the potential to enjoy a wide range of intracellular pH imaging applications that may not be feasible with fluorescent proteins or organic fluorophores alone.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. Generic Comparison of Protein Inference Engines*

    PubMed Central

    Claassen, Manfred; Reiter, Lukas; Hengartner, Michael O.; Buhmann, Joachim M.; Aebersold, Ruedi

    2012-01-01

    Protein identifications, instead of peptide-spectrum matches, constitute the biologically relevant result of shotgun proteomics studies. How to appropriately infer and report protein identifications has triggered a still ongoing debate. This debate has so far suffered from the lack of appropriate performance measures that allow us to objectively assess protein inference approaches. This study describes an intuitive, generic and yet formal performance measure and demonstrates how it enables experimentalists to select an optimal protein inference strategy for a given collection of fragment ion spectra. We applied the performance measure to systematically explore the benefit of excluding possibly unreliable protein identifications, such as single-hit wonders. Therefore, we defined a family of protein inference engines by extending a simple inference engine by thousands of pruning variants, each excluding a different specified set of possibly unreliable identifications. We benchmarked these protein inference engines on several data sets representing different proteomes and mass spectrometry platforms. Optimally performing inference engines retained all high confidence spectral evidence, without posterior exclusion of any type of protein identifications. Despite the diversity of studied data sets consistently supporting this rule, other data sets might behave differently. In order to ensure maximal reliable proteome coverage for data sets arising in other studies we advocate abstaining from rigid protein inference rules, such as exclusion of single-hit wonders, and instead consider several protein inference approaches and assess these with respect to the presented performance measure in the specific application context. PMID:22057310

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

    2016-04-14

    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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Red fluorescent protein with reversibly photoswitchable absorbance for photochromic FRET

    PubMed Central

    Subach, Fedor V.; Zhang, Lijuan; Gadella, Theodorus W.J.; Gurskaya, Nadya G.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.; Verkhusha, Vladislav V.

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY We have developed the first red fluorescent protein, named rsTagRFP, which possesses reversibly photoswitchable absorbance spectra. Illumination with blue and yellow light switches rsTagRFP into a red fluorescent state (ON state) or non-fluorescent state (OFF state), respectively. The ON and OFF states exhibit absorbance maxima at 567 and 440 nm, respectively. Due to the photoswitchable absorbance, rsTagRFP can be used as an acceptor for a photochromic Förster resonance energy transfer (pcFRET). The photochromic acceptor facilitates determination of a protein-protein interaction by providing an internal control for FRET. Using pcFRET with EYFP as a donor we observed an interaction between epidermal growth factor receptor and growth factor receptor-binding protein 2 in live cells by detecting the modulation of both the fluorescence intensity and lifetime of the EYFP donor upon the ON-OFF photoswitching of the rsTagRFP acceptor. PMID:20659687

  6. 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…

  7. 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...

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Identifying subcellular protein localization with fluorescent protein fusions after transient expression in onion epidermal cells.

    PubMed

    Nebenführ, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Most biochemical functions of plant cells are carried out by proteins which act at very specific places within these cells, for example, within different organelles. Identifying the subcellular localization of proteins is therefore a useful tool to narrow down the possible functions that a novel or unknown protein may carry out. The discovery of genetically encoded fluorescent markers has made it possible to tag specific proteins and visualize them in vivo under a variety of conditions. This chapter describes a simple method to use transient expression of such fluorescently tagged proteins in onion epidermal cells to determine their subcellular localization relative to known markers.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Fluorescence quenching in proteins: some applications to protein-DNA and protein-lipid interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knutson, Jay R.; Chen, Raymond F.; Porter, D. K.; Hensley, Preston; Han, Myun K.; Kim, S. J.; Wilson, Samuel H.; Clague, M.; Williamson, Cynthia K.

    1992-04-01

    The authors outline some examples of the advantages found in subdividing overall quenching into heterogeneous contributions. Subdivision is accomplished by overdetermination (global) and association (DAS, decay associated spectral) methods. In some cases, the subdivision of fluorescence leads to the unique identification of different fluorophores in different sites. Alternatively, the recovered components may reflect conformational heterogeneity at each site. For intrinsic protein fluorescence, it is often noted in the literature that single Trp proteins may be multiexponential. Genetic substitution in multi-Trp proteins, however, often leads to very strong (if not complete) lifetime-to-Trp assignment. Even if a single Trp experiences two or more microenvironments, it can be a useful reporter. The linkage of multiple lifetimes and amplitudes to changes in global conformation often reveals a more `sensitive' subpopulation or lifetime component that becomes a better indicator for important conformational states than aggregate intensity can provide. This has proven useful in studying pH transitions of proteins both in solution and embedded in membranes. Energy transfer is particularly useful in differentiating sites at different distances. Further, the disclosure of heterogeneity in distance is clearly superior to the reporting of a mean distance. This report surveys several systems that have been examined via emission DAS techniques, showing how each protein is better understood when viewed in terms of discrete spectral contributions. We conclude with an overview and some details about our construction of an EDAS (excitation-DAS) instrument; i.e., how excitation scans can be incorporated into a time-resolved instrument.

  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. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Fluorescent protein senses and reports mechanical damage in glass-fiber-reinforced polymer composites.

    PubMed

    Makyła, Katarzyna; Müller, Christoph; Lörcher, Samuel; Winkler, Thomas; Nussbaumer, Martin G; Eder, Michaela; Bruns, Nico

    2013-05-21

    Yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) is used as a mechanoresponsive layer at the fiber/resin interface in glass-fiber-reinforced composites. The protein loses its fluorescence when subjected to mechanical stress. Within the material, it reports interfacial shear debonding and barely visible impact damage by a transition from a fluorescent to a non-fluorescent state. PMID:23423911

  20. Quantitative Analysis of Spatial Protein-protein Proximity in Fluorescence Confocal Microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Yong; Liu, Yi-Kuang; Eghbali, Mansoureh; Stefani, Enrico

    2009-02-01

    To quantify spatial protein-protein proximity (colocalization) in fluorescence microscopic images, cross-correlation and autocorrelation functions were decomposed into fast and slowly decaying components. The fast component results from clusters of proteins specifically labeled and the slow one from background/image heterogeneity. We show that the calculation of the protein-protein proximity index and the correlation coefficient are more reliably determined by extracting the fast-decaying component.

  1. [Isolation and purification of enhanced green fluorescent protein using chromatography].

    PubMed

    Hou, Qinghua; Song, Shuliang; Liang, Hao; Wang, Weili; Ji, Aiguo

    2013-02-01

    Enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) is a common biological marker. In this research, on the foundation of successful clone and expression of EGFP, a two-step chromatographic method was established to separate and purify EGFP, which includes the use of HisTrap HP immobilized metal affinity chromatography (IMAC) and Sephadex G-10 HR size exclusion chromatography in sequence. Sephacryl S-300 HR size exclusion chromatography and sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) were used to check out the purity of EGFP. At last, it was found that EGFP still had fluorescent activity using fluorescence spectrophotometric detection and Native-PAGE detection. This method can effectively separate the active EGFP. The purity of the obtained EGFP was more than 98%.

  2. Exploring color tuning strategies in red fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Hense, Anika; Nienhaus, Karin; Nienhaus, G Ulrich

    2015-02-01

    Red-emitting fluorescent proteins (RFPs) with fluorescence emission above 600 nm are advantageous for cell and tissue imaging applications for various reasons. Fluorescence from an RFP is well separated from cellular autofluorescence, which is in the green region of the spectrum, and red light is scattered less, which allows thicker specimens to be imaged. Moreover, the phototoxic response of cells is lower for red than blue or green light exposure. Further red-shifted FP variants can be obtained by genetic modifications causing an extension of the conjugated π-electron system of the chromophore, or by placing amino acids near the chromophore that stabilize its excited state or destabilize its ground state. We have selected the tetrameric RFP eqFP611 from Entacmaea quadricolor as a lead structure and discuss several rational design trials to generate RFP variants with improved photochemical properties.

  3. 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.

  4. Nucleic acid-based fluorescence sensors for detecting proteins.

    PubMed

    Heyduk, Ewa; Heyduk, Tomasz

    2005-02-15

    We report here development of a rapid, homogeneous, aptamer-based fluorescence assay ("molecular beacons") for detecting proteins. The assay involves protein-induced coassociation of two aptamers recognizing two distinct epitopes of the protein. The aptamers contain short fluorophore-labeled complementary "signaling" oligonucleotides attached to the aptamer by non-DNA linker. Coassociation of the two aptamers with the protein results in bringing the two "signaling" oligonucleotides into proximity, producing a large change of fluorescence resonance energy transfer between the fluorophores. We used thrombin as a model system to provide proof-of-principle evidence validating this molecular beacon design. Thrombin beacon was capable of detecting the protein with high selectivity (also in complex biological mixtures), picomolar sensitivity, and high signal-to-background ratio. This is a homogeneous assay requiring no sample manipulation. Since the design of molecular beacons described here is not limited to any specific protein, it will be possible to develop these beacons to detect a variety of target proteins of biomedical importance.

  5. Dual-color fluorescence imaging of tumor/host interaction with green and red fluorescent proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Meng; Amoh, Yasuyuki; Li, Lingna; Baranov, Eugene; Wang, Jin Wei; Jiang, Ping; Moossa, A. R.; Hoffman, Robert M.

    2004-06-01

    Dual-color fluorescence imaging using red fluorescent protein (RFP)-expressing tumors transplanted in green fluorescent protein (GFP) expressing transgenic mice has been shown to be a powerful technology to study tumor-host interaction. Host animals include mice which express the GFP transgene in essentially all cells as well as animals in which the regulatory elements of the stem cell marker nestin drive GFP. The general GFP-transgenic mouse is available in both the normal and athymic nude (nu/nu) background. These models show with great clarity the details of the tumor-stroma interaction especially tumor induced angiogenesis, tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, stromal fibroblasts and macrophages. GFP-expressing tumor vasculature could be visualized interacting with the RFP-expressing tumor cells transplanted to the nestin-driven GFP transgenic mice which expressed nestin-GFP in nascent blood vessels was shown as a marker of nascent tumor angiogenesis. Dual-color fluorescence imaging, which visualizes the tumor-host interaction by whole-body imaging and at the cellular level in fresh tissues, dramatically expanding previous studies in fixed and stained preparations (1).

  6. Fluorescent proteins as singlet oxygen photosensitizers: mechanistic studies in photodynamic inactivation of bacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruiz-González, Rubén.; White, John H.; Cortajarena, Aitziber L.; Agut, Montserrat; Nonell, Santi; Flors, Cristina

    2013-02-01

    Antimicrobial photodynamic therapy (aPDT) combines a photosensitizer, light and oxygen to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS), mainly singlet oxygen (1O2), to photo-oxidize important biomolecules and induce cell death. aPDT is a promising alternative to standard antimicrobial strategies, but its mechanisms of action are not well understood. One of the reasons for that is the lack of control of the photosensitizing drugs location. Here we report the use of geneticallyencoded fluorescent proteins that are also 1O2 photosensitizers to address the latter issue. First, we have chosen the red fluorescent protein TagRFP as a photosensitizer, which unlike other fluorescent proteins such as KillerRed, is able to produce 1O2 but not other ROS. TagRFP photosensitizes 1O2 with a small, but not negligible, quantum yield. In addition, we have used miniSOG, a more efficient 1O2 photosensitizing fluorescent flavoprotein that has been recently engineered from phototropin 2. We have genetically incorporated these two photosensitizers into the cytosol of E. coli and demonstrated that intracellular 1O2 is sufficient to kill bacteria. Additional assays have provided further insight into the mechanism of cell death. Photodamage seems to occur primarily in the inner membrane, and extends to the outer membrane if the photosensitizer's efficiency is high enough. These observations are markedly different to those reported for external photosensitizers, suggesting that the site where 1O2 is primarily generated proves crucial for inflicting different types of cell damage.

  7. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2006-01-01

    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 Å crystal structure (1 Å=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. PMID:16859491

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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

  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. Optogenetic Reporters: Fluorescent Protein-Based Genetically-Encoded Indicators of Signaling and Metabolism in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Tantama, Mathew; Hung, Yin Pun; Yellen, Gary

    2012-01-01

    Fluorescent protein technology has evolved to include genetically-encoded biosensors that can monitor levels of ions, metabolites, and enzyme activities as well as protein conformation and even membrane voltage. They are well suited to live-cell microscopy and quantitative analysis, and they can be used in multiple imaging modes, including one or two-photon fluorescence intensity or lifetime microscopy. Although not nearly complete, there now exists a substantial set of genetically-encoded reporters that can be used to monitor many aspects of neuronal and glial biology, and these biosensors can be used to visualize synaptic transmission and activity-dependent signaling in vitro and in vivo. In this review we present an overview of design strategies for engineering biosensors, including sensor designs using circularly-permuted fluorescent proteins and using fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) between fluorescent proteins. We also provide examples of indicators that sense small ions (e.g., pH, chloride, zinc), metabolites (e.g., glutamate, glucose, ATP, cAMP, lipid metabolites), signaling pathways (e.g., G protein coupled receptors, Rho GTPases), enzyme activities (e.g., protein kinase A, caspases), and reactive species. We focus on examples where these genetically-encoded indicators have been applied to brain-related studies and used with live-cell fluorescence microscopy. PMID:22341329

  14. A knot in the protein structure - probing the near-infrared fluorescent protein iRFP designed from a bacterial phytochrome.

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-01

    The possibility of engineering near-infrared fluorescent proteins and biosensors from bacterial phytochrome photoreceptors (BphPs) has led to substantial interest in this family of proteins. The near-infrared fluorescent proteins have allowed non-invasive bio-imaging of deep tissues and whole organs in living animals. BphPs and derived near-infrared fluorescent proteins contain a structural element, called a knot, in their polypeptide chains. The formation of knot structures in proteins was refuted for a long time. Here, we studied the denaturation and renaturation processes of the near-infrared fluorescent probe iRFP, engineered from RpBphP2, which utilizes a heme-derived tetrapyrrole compound biliverdin as a chromophore. iRFP contains a unique figure-of-eight knot. The denaturation and renaturation curves of the iRFP apoform coincided well, suggesting efficient refolding. However, the iRFP holoform exhibited irreversible unfolding and aggregation associated with the bound chromophore. The knot structure in the apoform did not prevent subsequent binding of biliverdin, resulting in the functional iRFP holoform. We suggest that the irreversibility of protein unfolding is caused by post-translational protein modifications, such as chromophore binding, rather than the presence of the knot. These results are essential for future design of BphP-based near-infrared probes, and add important features to our knowledge of protein folding.

  15. Orange fluorescent proteins constructed from cyanobacteriochromes chromophorylated with phycoerythrobilin.

    PubMed

    Sun, Ya-Fang; Xu, Jin-Guo; Tang, Kun; Miao, Dan; Gärtner, Wolfgang; Scheer, Hugo; Zhao, Kai-Hong; Zhou, Ming

    2014-05-01

    Cyanobacteriochromes are a structurally and spectrally highly diverse class of phytochrome-related photosensory biliproteins. They contain one or more GAF domains that bind phycocyanobilin (PCB) autocatalytically; some of these proteins are also capable of further modifying PCB to phycoviolobilin or rubins. We tested the chromophorylation with the non-photochromic phycoerythrobilin (PEB) of 16 cyanobacteriochrome GAFs from Nostoc sp. PCC 7120, of Slr1393 from Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, and of Tlr0911 from Thermosynechococcus elongatus BP-1. Nine GAFs could be autocatalytically chromophorylated in vivo/in E. coli with PEB, resulting in highly fluorescent biliproteins with brightness comparable to that of fluorescent proteins like GFP. In several GAFs, PEB was concomitantly converted to phycourobilin (PUB) during binding. This not only shifted the spectra, but also increased the Stokes shift. The chromophorylated GAFs could be oligomerized further by attaching a GCN4 leucine zipper domain, thereby enhancing the absorbance and fluorescence of the complexes. The presence of both PEB and PUB makes these oligomeric GAF-"bundles" interesting models for energy transfer akin to the antenna complexes found in cyanobacterial phycobilisomes. The thermal and photochemical stability and their strong brightness make these constructs promising orange fluorescent biomarkers. PMID:24604419

  16. Measurement of exhaust gas recirculation rate by laser-induced fluorescence in engine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morin, C.; Modica, V.; Guibert, P.

    2008-10-01

    The objective of this study is to measure by planar laser-induced fluorescence the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) rate in the combustion chamber of an optical engine to quantify the stratification phenomena used in the new combustion strategy. From the results obtained in a high pressure-high temperature (HP-HT) facility, the tracer chosen for this aim is 3-pentanone. This paper presents a quantitative measurement of the EGR rate in the engine and a post-processing model with a correction and calibration procedure by considering the influence of temperature and pressure on the absorption cross-section and the 3-pentanone fluorescence quantum yield from the results established in the HP-HT facility. The stratification phenomena are quantified by using 3-pentanone fluorescence for two different configurations of EGR introduction in the engine. The local fluorescence measurements in the HP-HT facility are also compared with planar fluorescence measurements in the optical engine.

  17. Protein-protein interactions visualized by bimolecular fluorescence complementation in tobacco protoplasts and leaves.

    PubMed

    Schweiger, Regina; Schwenkert, Serena

    2014-03-09

    Many proteins interact transiently with other proteins or are integrated into multi-protein complexes to perform their biological function. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) is an in vivo method to monitor such interactions in plant cells. In the presented protocol the investigated candidate proteins are fused to complementary halves of fluorescent proteins and the respective constructs are introduced into plant cells via agrobacterium-mediated transformation. Subsequently, the proteins are transiently expressed in tobacco leaves and the restored fluorescent signals can be detected with a confocal laser scanning microscope in the intact cells. This allows not only visualization of the interaction itself, but also the subcellular localization of the protein complexes can be determined. For this purpose, marker genes containing a fluorescent tag can be coexpressed along with the BiFC constructs, thus visualizing cellular structures such as the endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, the Golgi apparatus or the plasma membrane. The fluorescent signal can be monitored either directly in epidermal leaf cells or in single protoplasts, which can be easily isolated from the transformed tobacco leaves. BiFC is ideally suited to study protein-protein interactions in their natural surroundings within the living cell. However, it has to be considered that the expression has to be driven by strong promoters and that the interaction partners are modified due to fusion of the relatively large fluorescence tags, which might interfere with the interaction mechanism. Nevertheless, BiFC is an excellent complementary approach to other commonly applied methods investigating protein-protein interactions, such as coimmunoprecipitation, in vitro pull-down assays or yeast-two-hybrid experiments.

  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 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

  20. Fluorescence-based characterization of non-fluorescent transient states of tryptophan – prospects for protein conformation and interaction studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hevekerl, Heike; Tornmalm, Johan; Widengren, Jerker

    2016-10-01

    Tryptophan fluorescence is extensively used for label-free protein characterization. Here, we show that by analyzing how the average tryptophan fluorescence intensity varies with excitation modulation, kinetics of tryptophan dark transient states can be determined in a simple, robust and reliable manner. Thereby, highly environment-, protein conformation- and interaction-sensitive information can be recorded, inaccessible via traditional protein fluorescence readouts. For verification, tryptophan transient state kinetics were determined under different environmental conditions, and compared to literature data. Conformational changes in a spider silk protein were monitored via the triplet state kinetics of its tryptophan residues, reflecting their exposure to an air-saturated aqueous solution. Moreover, tryptophan fluorescence anti-bunching was discovered, reflecting local pH and buffer conditions, previously observed only by ultrasensitive measurements in highly fluorescent photo-acids. Taken together, the presented approach, broadly applicable under biologically relevant conditions, has the potential to become a standard biophysical approach for protein conformation, interaction and microenvironment studies.

  1. Laboratory evolution of fast-folding green fluorescent protein using secretory pathway quality control.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Adam C; DeLisa, Matthew P

    2008-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) has undergone a long history of optimization to become one of the most popular proteins in all of cell biology. It is thermally and chemically robust and produces a pronounced fluorescent phenotype when expressed in cells of all types. Recently, a superfolder GFP was engineered with increased resistance to denaturation and improved folding kinetics. Here we report that unlike other well-folded variants of GFP (e.g., GFPmut2), superfolder GFP was spared from elimination when targeted for secretion via the SecYEG translocase. This prompted us to hypothesize that the folding quality control inherent to this secretory pathway could be used as a platform for engineering similar 'superfolded' proteins. To test this, we targeted a combinatorial library of GFPmut2 variants to the SecYEG translocase and isolated several superfolded variants that accumulated in the cytoplasm due to their enhanced folding properties. Each of these GFP variants exhibited much faster folding kinetics than the parental GFPmut2 protein and one of these, designated superfast GFP, folded at a rate that even exceeded superfolder GFP. Remarkably, these GFP variants exhibited little to no loss in specific fluorescence activity relative to GFPmut2, suggesting that the process of superfolding can be accomplished without altering the proteins' normal function. Overall, we demonstrate that laboratory evolution combined with secretory pathway quality control enables sampling of largely unexplored amino-acid sequences for the discovery of artificial, high-performance proteins with properties that are unparalleled in their naturally occurring analogues. PMID:18545653

  2. 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.

  3. Improved "optical highlighter" probes derived from discosoma red fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Lisbeth C; Marchant, Jonathan S

    2005-02-01

    The tetrameric red fluorescent protein, DsRed, undergoes a rapid red to green color change evoked by short wavelength (lambda < 760 nm) femtosecond irradiation--a phenomenon that underpins the application of DsRed as an "optical highlighter" probe for tracking live cells, organelles, and fusion proteins. This color change results from selective bleaching of the "mature" red-emitting species of DsRed and an enhancement of emission from the "immature" green species, likely caused by dequenching of fluorescence resonance energy transfer occurring within the protein tetramer. Here, we have examined the role of residues known to influence the rate and completeness of chromophore maturation on the cellular and biophysical properties of DsRed mutants. Surprisingly, a single amino acid mutation (N42Q) with increased basal green emission yet rapid chromophore maturation displayed a multiphoton-evoked color change that was brighter, more consistent, more vivid, and easier to evoke than DsRed, despite the larger proportion of green chromophores. Rapidly maturing mutants with more complete chromophore maturation, exhibited little color change and increased resistance to multiphoton bleaching. We describe improved optical and cell biological properties for two DsRed-derived variants which we showcase in photolabeling studies, and discuss these data in terms of implications for fluorescence resonance energy transfer-based probes.

  4. Differential rates of gene expression monitored by green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Lu, Canghai; Albano, C Renee; Bentley, William E; Rao, Govind

    2002-08-20

    The use of green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a reporter gene has made a broad impact in several areas, especially in studies of protein trafficking, localization, and expression analysis. GFP's many advantages are that it is small, autocatalytic, and does not require fixation, cell disruption, or the addition of cofactors or substrates. Two characteristics of GFP, extreme stability and chromophore cyclization lag time, pose a hindrance to the application of GFP as a real-time gene expression reporter in bioprocess applications. In this report, we present analytical methods that overcome these problems and enable the temporal visualization of discrete gene regulatory events. The approach we present measures the rate of change in GFP fluorescence, which in turn reflects the rate of gene expression. We conducted fermentation and microplate experiments using a protein synthesis inhibitor to illustrate the feasibility of this system. Additional experiments using the classic gene regulation of the araBAD operon show the utility of GFP as a near real-time indicator of gene regulation. With repetitive induction and repression of the arabinose promoter, the differential rate of GFP fluorescence emission shows corresponding cyclical changes during the culture.

  5. 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.

  6. A fluorescent tool set for yeast Atg proteins

    PubMed Central

    Li, Dan; Song, Jing-Zhen; Shan, Mei-Hua; Li, Shi-Ping; Liu, Wei; Li, Hui; Zhu, Jing; Wang, Yue; Lin, Jianping; Xie, Zhiping

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescence microscopy of live cells is instrumental in deciphering the molecular details of autophagy. To facilitate the routine examination of yeast Atg proteins under diverse conditions, here we provide a comprehensive tool set, including (1) plasmids for the expression of GFP chimeras at endogenous levels for most Atg proteins, (2) RFP-Atg8 constructs with improved properties as a PAS marker, and (3) plasmids for the complementation of common yeast auxotrophic markers. We hope that the availability of this tool set will further accelerate yeast autophagy research. PMID:25998947

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Phage display of engineered binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Levisson, Mark; Spruijt, Ruud B; Winkel, Ingrid Nolla; Kengen, Servé W M; van der Oost, John

    2014-01-01

    In current purification processes optimization of the capture step generally has a large impact on cost reduction. At present, valuable biomolecules are often produced in relatively low concentrations and, consequently, the eventual selective separation from complex mixtures can be rather inefficient. A separation technology based on a very selective high-affinity binding may overcome these problems. Proteins in their natural environment manifest functionality by interacting specifically and often with relatively high affinity with other molecules, such as substrates, inhibitors, activators, or other proteins. At present, antibodies are the most commonly used binding proteins in numerous applications. However, antibodies do have limitations, such as high production costs, low stability, and a complex patent landscape. A novel approach is therefore to use non-immunoglobulin engineered binding proteins in affinity purification. In order to obtain engineered binders with a desired specificity, a large mutant library of the new to-be-developed binding protein has to be created and screened for potential binders. A powerful technique to screen and select for proteins with desired properties from a large pool of variants is phage display. Here, we indicate several criteria for potential binding protein scaffolds and explain the principle of M13 phage display. In addition, we describe experimental protocols for the initial steps in setting up a M13 phage display system based on the pComb3X vector, including construction of the phagemid vector, production of phages displaying the protein of interest, and confirmation of display on the M13 phage.

  10. 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.

  11. Fluorescent biphenyl derivatives of phenylalanine suitable for protein modification.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shengxi; Fahmi, Nour Eddine; Bhattacharya, Chandrabali; Wang, Lin; Jin, Yuguang; Benkovic, Stephen J; Hecht, Sidney M

    2013-11-26

    In a recent study, we demonstrated that structurally compact fluorophores incorporated into the side chains of amino acids could be introduced into dihydrofolate reductase from Escherichia coli (ecDHFR) with minimal disruption of protein structure or function, even when the site of incorporation was within a folded region of the protein. The modified proteins could be employed for FRET measurements, providing sensitive monitors of changes in protein conformation. The very favorable results achieved in that study encouraged us to prepare additional fluorescent amino acids of potential utility for studying protein dynamics. Presently, we describe the synthesis and photophysical characterization of four positional isomers of biphenyl-phenylalanine, all of which were found to exhibit potentially useful fluorescent properties. All four phenylalanine derivatives were used to activate suppressor tRNA transcripts and incorporated into multiple positions of ecDHFR. All phenylalanine derivatives were incorporated with good efficiency into position 16 of ecDHFR and afforded modified proteins that consumed NADPH at rates up to about twice the rate measured for wild type. This phenomenon has been noted on a number of occasions previously and shown to be due to an increase in the off-rate of tetrahydrofolate from the enzyme, altering a step that is normally rate limiting. When introduced into sterically accessible position 49, the four phenylalanine derivatives afforded DHFRs having catalytic function comparable to wild type. The four phenylalanine derivatives were also introduced into position 115 of ecDHFR, which is known to be a folded region of the protein less tolerant of structural alteration. As anticipated, significant differences were noted in the catalytic efficiencies of the derived proteins. The ability of two of the sizable biphenyl-phenylalanine derivatives to be accommodated at position 115 with minimal perturbation of DHFR function is attributed to rotational

  12. Fluorescence, polarized fluorescence, and Brewster angle microscopy of palmitic acid and lung surfactant protein B monolayers.

    PubMed Central

    Lipp, M M; Lee, K Y; Waring, A; Zasadzinski, J A

    1997-01-01

    Fluorescence, polarized fluorescence, and Brewster angle microscopy reveal that human lung surfactant protein SP-B and its amino terminus (SP-B[1-25]) alter the phase behavior of palmitic acid monolayers by inhibiting the formation of condensed phases and creating a new fluid protein-rich phase. This fluid phase forms a network that separates condensed phase domains at coexistence and persists to high surface pressures. The network changes the monolayer collapse mechanism from heterogeneous nucleation/growth and fracturing processes to a more homogeneous process through isolating individual condensed phase domains. This results in higher surface pressures at collapse, and monolayers easier to respread on expansion, factors essential to the in vivo function of lung surfactant. The network is stabilized by a low-line tension between the coexisting phases, as confirmed by the observation of extended linear domains, or "stripe" phases, and a Gouy-Chapman analysis of protein-containing monolayers. Comparison of isotherm data and observed morphologies of monolayers containing SP-B(1-25) with those containing the full SP-B sequence show that the shortened peptide retains most of the native activity of the full-length protein, which may lead to cheaper and more effective synthetic replacement formulations. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 3 FIGURE 4 FIGURE 6 FIGURE 7 FIGURE 8 FIGURE 9 FIGURE 10 PMID:9168053

  13. 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

  14. 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…

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. Development of Fluorescent Protein Probes Specific for Parallel DNA and RNA G-Quadruplexes.

    PubMed

    Dang, Dung Thanh; Phan, Anh Tuân

    2016-01-01

    We have developed fluorescent protein probes specific for parallel G-quadruplexes by attaching cyan fluorescent protein to the G-quadruplex-binding motif of the RNA helicase RHAU. Fluorescent probes containing RHAU peptide fragments of different lengths were constructed, and their binding to G-quadruplexes was characterized. The selective recognition and discrimination of G-quadruplex topologies by the fluorescent protein probes was easily detected by the naked eye or by conventional gel imaging.

  18. Novel, fluorescent, SSB protein chimeras with broad utility.

    PubMed

    Liu, Juan; Choi, Meerim; Stanenas, Adam G; Byrd, Alicia K; Raney, Kevin D; Cohan, Christopher; Bianco, Piero R

    2011-06-01

    The Escherichia coli single-stranded DNA binding protein (SSB) is a central player in DNA metabolism where it organizes genome maintenance complexes and stabilizes single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) intermediates generated during DNA processing. Due to the importance of SSB and to facilitate real-time studies, we developed a dual plasmid expression system to produce novel, chimeric SSB proteins. These chimeras, which contain mixtures of histidine-tagged and fluorescent protein(FP)-fusion subunits, are easily purified in milligram quantities and used without further modification, a significant enhancement over previous methods to produce fluorescent SSB. Chimeras retain the functionality of wild type in all assays, demonstrating that SSB function is unaffected by the FPs. We demonstrate the power and utility of these chimeras in single molecule studies providing a great level of insight into the biochemical mechanism of RecBCD. We also utilized the chimeras to show for the first time that RecG and SSB interact in vivo. Consequently, we anticipate that the chimeras described herein will facilitate in vivo, in vitro and single DNA molecule studies using proteins that do not require further modification prior to use.

  19. Electrochemical Activation of Engineered Protein Switches

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Jay H.; Zayats, Maya; Searson, Peter C.; Ostermeier, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Engineered protein switches have a large dynamic range, high specificity for the activating ligand, and a modular architecture, and have been explored for a wide range of applications including biosensors and therapeutics. The ability to externally control switch function is important in extending applications for protein switches. We recently demonstrated that the on/off state could be controlled by the redox state of disulfide bonds introduced into the switches at select locations. Here, we demonstrate that an electrochemical signal can be used as an exogenous input to control switch function via reduction of the engineered disulfide bonds. This study suggests that disulfide-containing protein switch is a potentially useful platform for bioelectronic sensors with remote control of the sensing ability. PMID:26241391

  20. Dentin Matrix Proteins in Bone Tissue Engineering.

    PubMed

    Ravindran, Sriram; George, Anne

    2015-01-01

    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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Single Fluorescent Protein-Based Indicators for Zinc Ion (Zn(2+)).

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhijie; Ai, Hui-Wang

    2016-09-20

    Genetically encoded fluorescent Zn(2+) indicators (GEZIs) are highly attractive research tools for studying Zn(2+) homeostasis and signaling in mammalian cells. Most current GEZIs are based on Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) between a select pair of fluorescent proteins (FPs) fused with Zn(2+)-binding motifs. One drawback of such FRET-based GEZIs is their broad spectral profile bandwidths, creating challenges when monitoring multiple targets or parameters. To address this issue, we have engineered a group of intensiometric GEZIs based on single teal and red FPs that can be utilized to monitor subcellular Zn(2+) diffusion and glucose-induced Zn(2+) secretion in pancreatic INS-1E β-cells. These GEZIs offer the simplicity of intensiometric measurements, compatibility in multicolor imaging, large dynamic ranges, and relatively small molecular sizes, making them valuable additions to the molecular toolbox for imaging Zn(2+). PMID:27539450

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Intracellular pH measurements made simple by fluorescent protein probes and the phasor approach to fluorescence lifetime imaging.

    PubMed

    Battisti, Antonella; Digman, Michelle A; Gratton, Enrico; Storti, Barbara; Beltram, Fabio; Bizzarri, Ranieri

    2012-05-25

    A versatile pH-dependent fluorescent protein was applied to intracellular pH measurements by means of the phasor approach to fluorescence lifetime imaging. By this fit-less method we obtain intracellular pH maps under resting or altered physiological conditions by single-photon confocal or two-photon microscopy.

  10. Electrodynamic theory of fluorescence polarization of solutions: theory and application to the determination of protein-protein separation.

    PubMed

    Collett, Edward; Schaefer, Beth

    2009-03-10

    The phenomenon of the fluorescence polarization of solutions has found numerous applications in biophysics, biochemistry, immunology, and diagnostic and clinical medicine. The current theory to explain the phenomenon of fluorescence polarization in solutions was developed by F. Perrin in 1926. Perrin based his theory on the belief that fluorescence polarization is a manifestation of rotational Brownian motion. Fluorescence polarization, however, is an electromagnetic radiation phenomenon. Using Maxwell's equations, suitably modified to account for the quantum behavior of fluorescence, E. Collett developed a theory of fluorescence polarization (the electrodynamic theory) based on a model of dipole-dipole interactions. The electrodynamic theory is used to investigate protein-protein assays to determine the minimum and maximum binding distances between the proteins for (1) an estrogen receptor DNA bound to a fluorescein labeled estrogen response element and (2) a green fluorescent protein chimera of S-peptide (S65T-His6) bound to a free S-protein. PMID:19277089

  11. Imaging fluorescently tagged Phytophthora effector proteins inside infected plant tissue.

    PubMed

    Boevink, Petra C; Birch, Paul R J; Whisson, Stephen C

    2011-01-01

    Assays to determine the role of pathogen effectors within an infected plant cell are yielding valuable information about which host processes are targeted to allow successful pathogen colonization. However, this does not necessarily inform on the cellular location of these interactions, or if these effector-virulence target interactions occur only in the presence of the pathogen. Here, we describe techniques to allow the subcellular localization of pathogen effectors inside infected plant cells or tissues, based largely on infiltration of plant tissue by Agrobacterium tumefaciens and its delivery of DNA encoding fluorescent protein-tagged effectors, and subsequent confocal microscopy. PMID:21359810

  12. Evaluating Baculovirus Infection Using Green Fluorescent Protein and Variants.

    PubMed

    Wu, Hsuan-Chen; Cha, Hyung Joon; Bentley, William E

    2016-01-01

    By use of a strategy incorporating the green fluorescent protein (GFP), facile and rapid monitoring and visualization of baculovirus infection in insect cells is possible in vivo. This chapter describes two techniques for simple determination of virus titer in the baculovirus expression system using GFP co-expression and rapid monitoring of Sf-9 insect cell infection using a combination of GFP and the early-to-late (ETL) promoter of the virus vector. Because of its early appearance, GFP, when placed under the control of ETL promoter, will facilitate vector construction, virus isolation, and titer determination.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Green Fluorescent Protein-based Expression Screening of Membrane Proteins in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    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

  17. 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

    2015-01-06

    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.

  18. 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.

  19. Diffusion-Limited Cargo Loading of an Engineered Protein Container.

    PubMed

    Zschoche, Reinhard; Hilvert, Donald

    2015-12-30

    The engineered bacterial nanocompartment AaLS-13 is a promising artificial encapsulation system that exploits electrostatic interactions for cargo loading. In order to study its ability to take up and retain guests, a pair of fluorescent proteins was developed which allows spectroscopic determination of the extent of encapsulation by Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET). The encapsulation process is generally complete within a second, suggesting low energetic barriers for proteins to cross the capsid shell. Formation of intermediate aggregates upon mixing host and guest in vitro complicates capsid loading at low ionic strength, but can be sidestepped by increasing salt concentrations or diluting the components. Encapsulation of guests is completely reversible, and the position of the equilibrium is easily tuned by varying the ionic strength. These results, which challenge the notion that AaLS-13 is a continuous rigid shell, provide valuable information about cargo loading that will guide ongoing efforts to engineer functional host-guest complexes. Moreover, it should be possible to adapt the protein FRET pair described in this report to characterize functional capsid-cargo complexes generated by other encapsulation systems.

  20. Improved Plasmids for Fluorescent Protein Tagging of Microtubules in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Baranowski, Kaitlyn; Lee, Wei-Lih

    2016-01-01

    The ability to fluorescently label microtubules in live cells has enabled numerous studies of motile and mitotic processes. Such studies are particularly useful in budding yeast due to the ease with which they can be genetically manipulated and imaged by live cell fluorescence microscopy. Due to problems associated with fusing genes encoding fluorescent proteins (FPs) to the native a-tubulin (TUB1) gene, the FP-Tub1 fusion is generally integrated into the genome such that the endogenous TUB1 locus is left intact. Although such modifications have no apparent consequences on cell viability, it is unknown if these genome integrated FP-tubulin fusions negatively affect microtubule functions. Thus, a simple, economical, and highly sensitive assay of microtubule function is required. Furthermore, the current plasmids available for generation of FP-Tub1 fusions have not kept pace with the development of improved FPs. Here, we have developed a simple and sensitive assay of microtubule function that is sufficient to identify microtubule defects that were not apparent by fluorescence microscopy or cell growth assays. Using results obtained from this assay, we have engineered a new family of thirty FP-Tub1 plasmids that employ various improved FPs and numerous selectable markers that upon genome integration have no apparent defect on microtubule function. PMID:25711127

  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. A continuous fluorescent assay for protein prenyltransferases measuring diphosphate release.

    PubMed

    Pais, June E; Bowers, Katherine E; Stoddard, Andrea K; Fierke, Carol A

    2005-10-15

    Protein farnesyltransferase and protein geranylgeranyltransferase type I catalyze the transfer of a 15- and a 20-carbon prenyl group, respectively, from a prenyl diphosphate to a cysteine residue at the carboxyl terminus of target proteins, with the concomitant release of diphosphate. Common substrates include oncogenic Ras proteins, which are implicated in up to 30% of all human cancers, making prenyltransferases a viable target for chemotherapeutic drugs. A coupled assay has been developed to measure the rate constant of diphosphate (PPi) dissociation during the prenyltransferase reaction under both single and multiple turnover conditions. In this assay, the PPi group produced in the prenyltransferase reaction is rapidly cleaved by inorganic pyrophosphatase to form phosphate (Pi), which is then bound by a coumarin-labeled phosphate binding protein from Escherichia coli, resulting in a fluorescence increase. The observed rate constant for PPi release is equal to the rate constant of prenylation of the peptide, as measured by other assays, so that this nonradioactive assay can be used to measure prenyltransferase activity under either single or multiple turnover conditions. This assay can be adapted for high-throughput screening for potential prenyltransferase substrates and inhibitors.

  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. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Applications of Yeast Surface Display for Protein Engineering.

    PubMed

    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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  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. Engineering of the fluorescent-energy-conversion arm of phi29 DNA packaging motor for single-molecule studies.

    PubMed

    Lee, Tae Jin; Zhang, Hui; Chang, Chun-Li; Savran, Cagri; Guo, Peixuan

    2009-11-01

    The bacteriophage phi29 DNA packaging motor contains a protein core with a central channel comprising twelve copies of re-engineered gp10 protein geared by six copies of packaging RNA (pRNA) and a DNA packaging protein gp16 with unknown copies. Incorporation of this nanomotor into a nanodevice would be beneficial for many applications. To this end, extension and modification of the motor components are necessary for the linkage of this motor to other nanomachines. Here the re-engineering of the motor DNA packaging protein gp16 by extending its length and doubling its size using a fusion protein technique is reported. The modified motor integrated with the eGFP-gp16 maintains the ability to convert the chemical energy from adenosine triphosphate (ATP) hydrolysis to mechanical motion and package DNA. The resulting DNA-filled capsid is subsequently converted into an infectious virion. The extended part of the gp16 arm is a fluorescent protein eGFP, which serves as a marker for tracking the motor in single-molecule studies. The activity of the re-engineered motor with eGFP-gp16 is also observed directly with a bright-field microscope via its ability to transport a 2-microm-sized cargo bound to the DNA.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Quantitative Determination of Spatial Protein-Protein Correlations in Fluorescence Confocal Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Yong; Eghbali, Mansoureh; Ou, Jimmy; Lu, Rong; Toro, Ligia; Stefani, Enrico

    2010-01-01

    Abstract To quantify spatial protein-protein proximity (colocalization) in paired microscopic images of two sets of proteins labeled by distinct fluorophores, we showed that the cross-correlation and the autocorrelation functions of image intensity consisted of fast and slowly decaying components. The fast component resulted from clusters of proteins specifically labeled, and the slow component resulted from image heterogeneity and a broadly-distributed background. To better evaluate spatial proximity between the two specifically labeled proteins, we extracted the fast-decaying component by fitting the sharp peak in correlation functions to a Gaussian function, which was then used to obtain protein-protein proximity index and the Pearson's correlation coefficient. We also employed the median-filter method as a universal approach for background reduction to minimize nonspecific fluorescence. We illustrated our method by analyzing computer-simulated images and biological images. PMID:20141764

  20. 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

  1. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Summary The analyses of protein-protein interactions is 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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Translocation of green fluorescent protein to cyanobacterial periplasm using ice nucleation protein.

    PubMed

    Chungjatupornchai, Wipa; Fa-aroonsawat, Sirirat

    2009-04-01

    The translocation of proteins to cyanobacterial cell envelope is made complex by the presence of a highly differentiated membrane system. To investigate the protein translocation in cyanobacterium Synechococcus PCC 7942 using the truncated ice nucleation protein (InpNC) from Pseudomonas syringae KCTC 1832, the green fluorescent protein (GFP) was fused in frame to the carboxyl-terminus of InpNC. The fluorescence of GFP was found almost entirely as a halo in the outer regions of cells which appeared to correspond to the periplasm as demonstrated by confocal laser scanning microscopy, however, GFP was not displayed on the outermost cell surface. Western blotting analysis revealed that InpNC-GFP fusion protein was partially degraded. The N-terminal domain of InpNC may be susceptible to protease attack; the remaining C-terminal domain conjugated with GFP lost the ability to direct translocation across outer membrane and to act as a surface display motif. The fluorescence intensity of cells with periplasmic GFP was approximately 6-fold lower than that of cells with cytoplasmic GFP. The successful translocation of the active GFP to the periplasm may provide a potential means to study the property of cyanobacterial periplasmic substances in response to environmental changes in a non-invasive manner. PMID:19412603

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Rotational order–disorder structure of fluorescent protein FP480

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

    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. PMID:19690368

  11. 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

  12. Ultra-sensitive fluorescent proteins for imaging neuronal activity

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Tsai-Wen; Wardill, Trevor J.; Sun, Yi; Pulver, Stefan R.; Renninger, Sabine L.; Baohan, Amy; Schreiter, Eric R.; Kerr, Rex A.; Orger, Michael B.; Jayaraman, Vivek; Looger, Loren L.; Svoboda, Karel; Kim, Douglas S.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Fluorescent calcium sensors are widely used to image neural activity. Using structure-based mutagenesis and neuron-based screening, we developed a family of ultra-sensitive protein calcium sensors (GCaMP6) that outperformed other sensors in cultured neurons and in zebrafish, flies, and mice in vivo. In layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of the mouse visual cortex, GCaMP6 reliably detected single action potentials in neuronal somata and orientation-tuned synaptic calcium transients in individual dendritic spines. The orientation tuning of structurally persistent spines was largely stable over timescales of weeks. Orientation tuning averaged across spine populations predicted the tuning of their parent cell. Although the somata of GABAergic neurons showed little orientation tuning, their dendrites included highly tuned dendritic segments (5 - 40 micrometers long). GCaMP6 sensors thus provide new windows into the organization and dynamics of neural circuits over multiple spatial and temporal scales. PMID:23868258

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

    PubMed

    DiPilato, Lisa M; Zhang, Jin

    2010-02-01

    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.

  14. 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.

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

    PubMed

    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

  16. 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

  17. Fluorescence-based characterization of non-fluorescent transient states of tryptophan – prospects for protein conformation and interaction studies

    PubMed Central

    Hevekerl, Heike; Tornmalm, Johan; Widengren, Jerker

    2016-01-01

    Tryptophan fluorescence is extensively used for label-free protein characterization. Here, we show that by analyzing how the average tryptophan fluorescence intensity varies with excitation modulation, kinetics of tryptophan dark transient states can be determined in a simple, robust and reliable manner. Thereby, highly environment-, protein conformation- and interaction-sensitive information can be recorded, inaccessible via traditional protein fluorescence readouts. For verification, tryptophan transient state kinetics were determined under different environmental conditions, and compared to literature data. Conformational changes in a spider silk protein were monitored via the triplet state kinetics of its tryptophan residues, reflecting their exposure to an air-saturated aqueous solution. Moreover, tryptophan fluorescence anti-bunching was discovered, reflecting local pH and buffer conditions, previously observed only by ultrasensitive measurements in highly fluorescent photo-acids. Taken together, the presented approach, broadly applicable under biologically relevant conditions, has the potential to become a standard biophysical approach for protein conformation, interaction and microenvironment studies. PMID:27748381

  18. Pharmaceutical and industrial protein engineering: where we are?

    PubMed

    Amara, Amro Abd-Al-Fattah

    2013-01-01

    The huge amount of information, the big number of scientists and their efforts, labs, man/hrs, fund, companies all and others factors build the success of the amazing new branch of genetic engineering the 'protein engineering' (PE). It concerns with the modification of protein structure/function(s) or building protein from scratch. The engineered proteins usually have new criteria(s). Engineering proteins can be mediated on the level of genes or proteins. PE fined its way in different important sectors including industrial, pharmaceutical and medicinal ones. Aspects about PE and its applications will be discussed with this review. The concept, tools, and the industrial applications of the protein, engineered proteins and PE will be under focus. In order to get up to date knowledge about the applications of PE in basic protein and molecular biology, several examples are discussed. PE can play a significant role in different industrial and pharmaceutical sectors if used wisely and selectively.

  19. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation as a tool to study interactions of regulatory proteins in plant protoplasts.

    PubMed

    Pattanaik, Sitakanta; Werkman, Joshua R; Yuan, Ling

    2011-01-01

    Protein-protein interactions are an important aspect of the gene regulation process. The expression of a gene in response to certain stimuli, within a specific cell type or at a particular developmental stage, involves a complex network of interactions between different regulatory proteins and the cis-regulatory elements present in the promoter of the gene. A number of methods have been developed to study protein-protein interactions in vitro and in vivo in plant cells, one of which is bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC). BiFC is a relatively simple technique based upon the reconstitution of a fluorescent protein. The interacting protein complex can be visualized directly in a living plant cell when two non-fluorescent fragments, of an otherwise fluorescent protein, are fused to proteins found within that complex. Interaction of tagged proteins brings the two non-fluorescent fragments into close proximity and reconstitutes the fluorescent protein. In addition, the subcellular location of an interacting protein complex in the cell can be simultaneously determined. Using this approach, we have successfully demonstrated a protein-protein interaction between a R2R3 MYB and a basic helix-loop-helix MYC transcription factor related to flavonoid biosynthetic pathway in tobacco protoplasts.

  20. Gateway Vectors for Simultaneous Detection of Multiple Protein-Protein Interactions in Plant Cells Using Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation.

    PubMed

    Kamigaki, Akane; Nito, Kazumasa; Hikino, Kazumi; Goto-Yamada, Shino; Nishimura, Mikio; Nakagawa, Tsuyoshi; Mano, Shoji

    2016-01-01

    Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) is widely used to detect protein-protein interactions, because it is technically simple, convenient, and can be adapted for use with conventional fluorescence microscopy. We previously constructed enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (EYFP)-based Gateway cloning technology-compatible vectors. In the current study, we generated new Gateway cloning technology-compatible vectors to detect BiFC-based multiple protein-protein interactions using N- and C-terminal fragments of enhanced cyan fluorescent protein (ECFP), enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), and monomeric red fluorescent protein (mRFP1). Using a combination of N- and C-terminal fragments from ECFP, EGFP and EYFP, we observed a shift in the emission wavelength, enabling the simultaneous detection of multiple protein-protein interactions. Moreover, we developed these vectors as binary vectors for use in Agrobacterium infiltration and for the generate transgenic plants. We verified that the binary vectors functioned well in tobacco cells. The results demonstrate that the BiFC vectors facilitate the design of various constructions and are convenient for the detection of multiple protein-protein interactions simultaneously in plant cells. PMID:27490375

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Photoswitchable red fluorescent protein with a large Stokes shift.

    PubMed

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

    2014-10-23

    A subclass of fluorescent proteins (FPs), large Stokes shift (LSS) FP, are characterized by increased spread between excitation and emission maxima. We report a photoswitchable variant of a red FP with an LSS, PSLSSmKate, which initially exhibits excitation and emission at 445 and 622 nm, but violet irradiation photoswitches PSLSSmKate into a common red form with excitation and emission at 573 and 621 nm. We characterize spectral, photophysical, and biochemical properties of PSLSSmKate in vitro and in mammalian cells and determine its crystal structure in the LSS form. Mass spectrometry, mutagenesis, and spectroscopy of PSLSSmKate allow us to propose molecular mechanisms for the LSS, pH dependence, and light-induced chromophore transformation. We demonstrate the applicability of PSLSSmKate to superresolution photoactivated localization 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.

  4. 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

  5. Engineering of chaperone systems and of the unfolded protein response

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Saeed U.

    2008-01-01

    Production of recombinant proteins in mammalian cells is a successful technology that delivers protein pharmaceuticals for therapies and for diagnosis of human disorders. Cost effective production of protein biopharmaceuticals requires extensive optimization through cell and fermentation process engineering at the upstream and chemical engineering of purification processes at the downstream side of the production process. The majority of protein pharmaceuticals are secreted proteins. Accumulating evidence suggests that the folding and processing of these proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a general rate- and yield limiting step for their production. We will summarize our knowledge of protein folding in the ER and of signal transduction pathways activated by accumulation of unfolded proteins in the ER, collectively called the unfolded protein response (UPR). On the basis of this knowledge we will evaluate engineering approaches to increase cell specific productivities through engineering of the ER-resident protein folding machinery and of the UPR. PMID:19003179

  6. 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

  7. Molecular recognition of DNA-protein complexes: a straightforward method combining scanning force and fluorescence microscopy.

    PubMed

    Sanchez, Humberto; Kanaar, Roland; Wyman, Claire

    2010-06-01

    Combining scanning force and fluorescent microscopy allows simultaneous identification of labeled biomolecules and analysis of their nanometer level architectural arrangement. Fluorescent polystyrene nano-spheres were used as reliable objects for alignment of optical and topographic images. This allowed the precise localization of different fluorescence particles within complex molecular assemblies whose structure was mapped in nanometer detail topography. Our experiments reveal the versatility of this method for analysis of proteins and protein-DNA complexes.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-22

    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 Tb(3+) and from sensitized Tb(3+) 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.

  9. Protein-based fluorescent metal nanoclusters for small molecular drug screening.

    PubMed

    Yu, Yong; New, Siu Yee; Xie, Jianping; Su, Xiaodi; Tan, Yen Nee

    2014-11-18

    A facile drug screening method based on synthesis of fluorescent gold nanoclusters inside albumin proteins loaded with small molecular drugs and comparing the relative fluorescence intensities of the resultant gold nanoclusters has been developed and successfully applied for the quantitative measurement of drug-protein binding constants. PMID:25253537

  10. 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)

  11. 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

  12. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:24487319

  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. 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

  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. BIMOLECULAR FLUORESCENCE COMPLEMENTATION (BiFC) ANALYSIS AS A PROBE OF PROTEIN INTERACTIONS IN LIVING CELLS

    PubMed Central

    Kerppola, Tom K.

    2009-01-01

    Protein interactions are a fundamental mechanism for the generation of biological regulatory specificity. The study of protein interactions in living cells is of particular significance because the interactions that occur in a particular cell depend on the full complement of proteins present in the cell and the external stimuli that influence the cell. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) analysis enables direct visualization of protein interactions in living cells. The BiFC assay is based on the association between two non-fluorescent fragments of a fluorescent protein when they are brought in proximity to each other by an interaction between proteins fused to the fragments. Numerous protein interactions have been visualized using the BiFC assay in many different cell types and organisms. The BiFC assay is technically straightforward and can be performed using standard molecular biology and cell culture reagents and a regular fluorescence microscope or flow cytometer. PMID:18573091

  18. 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

  19. Microspectroscopic imaging tracks the intracellular processing of a signal transduction protein: fluorescent-labeled protein kinase C beta I.

    PubMed Central

    Bastiaens, P I; Jovin, T M

    1996-01-01

    We have devised a microspectroscopic strategy for assessing the intracellular (re)distribution and the integrity of the primary structure of proteins involved in signal transduction. The purified proteins are fluorescent-labeled in vitro and reintroduced into the living cell. The localization and molecular state of fluorescent-labeled protein kinase C beta I isozyme were assessed by a combination of quantitative confocal laser scanning microscopy, fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy, and novel determinations of fluorescence resonance energy transfer based on photobleaching digital imaging microscopy. The intensity and fluorescence resonance energy transfer efficiency images demonstrate the rapid nuclear translocation and ensuing fragmentation of protein kinase C beta I in BALB/c3T3 fibroblasts upon phorbol ester stimulation, and suggest distinct, compartmentalized roles for the regulatory and catalytic fragments. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 PMID:8710884

  20. 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

  1. Determination of proteins at nanogram levels by synchronous fluorescence scan technique with a novel composite nanoparticle as a fluorescence probe.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lun; Chen, Hongqi; Wang, Leyu; Wang, Guangfeng; Li, Ling; Xu, Fagong

    2004-09-01

    A novel composite nanoparticle has been prepared by an in situ polymerization method and applied as a protein fluorescence probe. The nano-CdS has been prepared, then the polymerization of acrylic acid (AA) was carried out by initiator potassium persulfate (KPS) under ultrasonic irradiation. The surface of the composite nanoparticles was covered with abundant carboxylic groups (--COOH). The nanoparticles are water-soluble, stable, and biocompatible. The synchronous fluorescence intensity of the composite nanoparticles is significantly increased in the presence of trace protein at pH 6.90. Based on this, a new synchronous fluorescence scan (SFS) analysis was developed for the determination of proteins including BSA, HSA, and human gamma-IgG. When Delta lambda = 280 nm, maximum synchronous fluorescence is produced at 290 nm. Under the optimum conditions, the response is linearly proportional to the concentration of proteins. The linear range is 0.1-10 microg ml(-1) for HSA, 0.09-8.0 microg ml(-1) for BSA, and 0.08-15 microg ml(-1) for human gamma-IgG, respectively. The method has been applied to the determination of the total protein in human serum samples collected from the hospital and the results are satisfactory. PMID:15294230

  2. Determination of proteins at nanogram levels by synchronous fluorescence scan technique with a novel composite nanoparticle as a fluorescence probe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Lun; Chen, Hongqi; Wang, Leyu; Wang, Guangfeng; Li, Ling; Xu, Fagong

    2004-09-01

    A novel composite nanoparticle has been prepared by an in situ polymerization method and applied as a protein fluorescence probe. The nano-CdS has been prepared, then the polymerization of acrylic acid (AA) was carried out by initiator potassium persulfate (KPS) under ultrasonic irradiation. The surface of the composite nanoparticles was covered with abundant carboxylic groups (COOH). The nanoparticles are water-soluble, stable, and biocompatible. The synchronous fluorescence intensity of the composite nanoparticles is significantly increased in the presence of trace protein at pH 6.90. Based on this, a new synchronous fluorescence scan (SFS) analysis was developed for the determination of proteins including BSA, HSA, and human γ-IgG. When Δ λ=280 nm, maximum synchronous fluorescence is produced at 290 nm. Under the optimum conditions, the response is linearly proportional to the concentration of proteins. The linear range is 0.1-10 μg ml -1 for HSA, 0.09-8.0 μg ml -1 for BSA, and 0.08-15 μg ml -1 for human γ-IgG, respectively. The method has been applied to the determination of the total protein in human serum samples collected from the hospital and the results are satisfactory.

  3. Protein engineering with artificial chemical nucleases.

    PubMed

    Larragy, Ruth; Fitzgerald, Jenny; Prisecaru, Andreea; McKee, Vickie; Leonard, Paul; Kellett, Andrew

    2015-08-21

    Herein we report the application of oxidative artificial chemical nucleases as novel agents for protein engineering. The complex ion [Cu(Phen)2(H2O)](2+) (CuPhen; Phen = 1,10-phenanthroline) was applied under Fenton-type conditions against a recombinant antibody fragment specific for prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and compared against traditional DNA shuffling using DNase I for the generation of recombinant mutagenesis libraries. We show that digestion and re-annealment of single chain variable fragment (scFv) coding DNA is possible using CuPhen. Results indicate recombinant library generation in this manner may generate novel clones—not accessible through the use of DNase I—with CuPhen producing highly PSA-specific binding antibodies identified by surface plasmon resonance.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Fluorescence imaging inside an internal combustion engine using tunable excimer lasers.

    PubMed

    Andresen, P; Meijer, G; Schlüter, H; Voges, H; Koch, A; Hentschel, W; Oppermann, W; Rothe, E

    1990-06-01

    Tunable excimer lasers are used to obtain 2-D images of molecular (and some state-specific) density distributions inside a cylinder of a modified four-cylinder in-line engine that has optical access. Natural fluorescence (i.e., without a laser) is used for some OH pictures, normal laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) for those of NO and of the isooctane fuel, and laser-induced predissociative fluorescence (LIPF) for other OH pictures and for those of O(2). Relevant spectroscopy is done to find the laser and fluorescence frequencies needed to measure isolated species. LIPF works well at high pressures, is state specific, and is ideally suited to follow turbulent processes. No similar measurements in engines have been previously reported. Pictures are taken in succeeding engine cycles. Their sequence is either at a particular point of the engine's cycle to show cyclic fluctuations, or at succeeding portions of the cycle to illustrate the progress of the gasdynamics or of the combustion.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Engineering of Therapeutic Proteins Production in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Kamionka, Mariusz

    2011-01-01

    Low cost and simplicity of cultivating bacteria make the E. coli expression system a preferable choice for production of therapeutic proteins both on a lab scale and in industry. In addition straightforward recombinant DNA technology offers engineering tools to produce protein molecules with modified features. The lack of posttranslational modification mechanisms in bacterial cells such as glycosylation, proteolytic protein maturation or limited capacity for formation of disulfide bridges may, to a certain extent, be overcome with protein engineering. Protein engineering is also often employed to improve protein stability or to modulate its biological action. More sophisticated modifications may be achieved by genetic fusions of two proteins. This article presents a variety of examples of genetic engineering of therapeutic proteins. It emphasizes the importance of designing a construct without any unnecessary amino acid residues. PMID:21050165

  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. Antibody Labeling with Fluorescent Dyes Using Magnetic Protein A and Protein G Beads.

    PubMed

    Nath, Nidhi; Godat, Becky; Urh, Marjeta

    2016-01-01

    Antibodies labeled with small molecules like fluorescent dyes, cytotoxic drugs, and radioactive tracers are essential tools in biomedical research, immunodiagnostics and more recently as therapeutic agents. Traditional methods for labeling antibodies with small molecules require purified antibodies at relatively high concentration, involve multiple dialysis steps and have limited throughput. However, several applications, including the field of Antibody Drug Conjugates (ADCs), will benefit from new methods that will allow labeling of antibodies directly from cell media. Such methods may allow antibodies to be screened in biologically relevant assays, for example, the receptor-mediated antibody internalization assay in the case of ADCs. Here, we describe a method (on-bead method) that enables labeling of small amounts of antibodies directly from cell media. This approach utilizes high capacity magnetic Protein A and Protein G affinity beads to capture antibodies from the cell media followed by labeling with small molecules using either amine or thiol chemistry and subsequent elution of the labeled antibodies. Taking fluorescent dyes as surrogates for small molecules, we demonstrate the on-bead labeling of three different mouse antibodies directly from cell media using both amine and thiol labeling chemistry. The high binding affinity of antibodies to Protein A and Protein G ensures high recoveries as well as high purity of the labeled antibodies. In addition, use of magnetic beads allows multiple samples to be handled manually, thereby significantly improving labeling throughput. PMID:27685323

  16. 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.

  17. Glow in the dark: fluorescent proteins as cell and tissue-specific markers in plants.

    PubMed

    Ckurshumova, Wenzislava; Caragea, Adriana E; Goldstein, Rochelle S; Berleth, Thomas

    2011-09-01

    Since the hallmark discovery of Aequorea victoria's Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) and its adaptation for efficient use in plants, fluorescent protein tags marking expression profiles or genuine proteins of interest have been used to recognize plant tissues and cell types, to monitor dynamic cell fate selection processes, and to obtain cell type-specific transcriptomes. Fluorescent tagging enabled visualization in living tissues and the precise recordings of dynamic expression pattern changes. The resulting accurate recording of cell fate acquisition kinetics in space and time has strongly stimulated mathematical modeling of self-organizing feedback mechanisms. In developmental studies, the use of fluorescent proteins has become critical, where morphological markers of tissues, cell types, or differentiation stages are either not known or not easily recognizable. In this review, we focus on the use of fluorescent markers to identify and illuminate otherwise invisible cell states in plant development.

  18. Glow in the dark: fluorescent proteins as cell and tissue-specific markers in plants.

    PubMed

    Ckurshumova, Wenzislava; Caragea, Adriana E; Goldstein, Rochelle S; Berleth, Thomas

    2011-09-01

    Since the hallmark discovery of Aequorea victoria's Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) and its adaptation for efficient use in plants, fluorescent protein tags marking expression profiles or genuine proteins of interest have been used to recognize plant tissues and cell types, to monitor dynamic cell fate selection processes, and to obtain cell type-specific transcriptomes. Fluorescent tagging enabled visualization in living tissues and the precise recordings of dynamic expression pattern changes. The resulting accurate recording of cell fate acquisition kinetics in space and time has strongly stimulated mathematical modeling of self-organizing feedback mechanisms. In developmental studies, the use of fluorescent proteins has become critical, where morphological markers of tissues, cell types, or differentiation stages are either not known or not easily recognizable. In this review, we focus on the use of fluorescent markers to identify and illuminate otherwise invisible cell states in plant development. PMID:21772029

  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. Expression, purification and some properties of fluorescent chimeras of human small heat shock proteins.

    PubMed

    Datskevich, Petr N; Mymrikov, Evgeny V; Sluchanko, Nikolai N; Shemetov, Anton A; Sudnitsyna, Maria V; Gusev, Nikolai B

    2012-03-01

    Small heat shock proteins (sHsp) are ubiquitously expressed in all human tissues and have an important housekeeping role in preventing the accumulation of aggregates of improperly folded or denatured proteins. They also participate in the regulation of the cytoskeleton, proliferation, apoptosis and many other vital processes. Fluorescent chimeras composed of sHsp and enhanced fluorescent proteins have been used to determine the intracellular locations of small heat shock proteins and to analyse the hetero-oligomeric complexes formed by different sHsp. However, the biochemical properties and chaperone-like activities of these chimeras have not been investigated. To determine the properties of these chimeras, we fused enhanced yellow and cyan fluorescent proteins (EYFP and ECFP) to the N-termini of four ubiquitously expressed human small heat shock proteins: HspB1, HspB5, HspB6, and HspB8. The eight fluorescent chimeras of small heat shock proteins and isolated fluorescent proteins were expressed in Escherichia coli. The chimeric proteins were isolated and purified via ammonium sulphate fractionation, ion exchange and size-exclusion chromatography. This method provided 20-100 mg of fluorescent chimeras from 1L of bacterial culture. The spectral properties of the chimeras were similar to those of the isolated fluorescent proteins. The fusion of fluorescent proteins to HspB6 and HspB8, which typically form dimers, did not affect their quaternary structures. Oligomers of the fluorescent chimeras of HspB1 and HspB5 were less stable and contained fewer subunits than oligomers formed by the wild-type proteins. Fusion with EYFP decreased the chaperone-like activity of HspB5 and HspB6 whereas fusion with ECFP increased chaperone-like activity. All fluorescent chimeras of HspB1 and HspB8 had higher chaperone-like activity than the wild-type proteins. Thus, although fluorescent chimeras are useful for many purposes, the fluorescent proteins used to form these chimeras may

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. A novel method for observing proteins in vivo using a small fluorescent label and multiphoton imaging.

    PubMed

    Botchway, Stanley W; Barba, Ignasi; Jordan, Randolf; Harmston, Rebecca; Haggie, Peter M; Williams, Simon-Peter; Fulton, Alexandra M; Parker, Anthony W; Brindle, Kevin M

    2005-09-15

    A novel method for the fluorescence detection of proteins in cells is described in the present study. Proteins are labelled by the selective biosynthetic incorporation of 5-hydroxytryptophan and the label is detected via selective two-photon excitation of the hydroxyindole and detection of its fluorescence emission at 340 nm. The method is demonstrated in this paper with images of a labelled protein in yeast cells.

  5. High-yield membrane protein expression from E. coli using an engineered outer membrane protein F fusion.

    PubMed

    Su, Pin-Chuan; Si, William; Baker, Deidre L; Berger, Bryan W

    2013-04-01

    Obtaining high yields of membrane proteins necessary to perform detailed structural study is difficult due to poor solubility and variability in yields from heterologous expression systems. To address this issue, an Escherichia coli-based membrane protein overexpression system utilizing an engineered bacterial outer membrane protein F (pOmpF) fusion has been developed. Full-length human receptor activity-modifying protein 1 (RAMP1) was expressed using pOmpF, solubilized in FC15 and purified to homogeneity. Using circular dichroism and fluorescence spectroscopy, purified full-length RAMP1 is composed of approximately 90% α-helix, and retains its solubility and structure in FC15 over a wide range of temperatures (20-60°C). Thus, our approach provides a useful, complementary approach to achieve high-yield, full-length membrane protein overexpression for biophysical studies.

  6. Novel multistep BRET-FRET energy transfer using nanoconjugates of firefly proteins, quantum dots, and red fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Alam, Rabeka; Zylstra, Joshua; Fontaine, Danielle M; Branchini, Bruce R; Maye, Mathew M

    2013-06-21

    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.

  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).

  8. [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

  9. [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.

  10. Receptor-mediated oral delivery of a bioencapsulated green fluorescent protein expressed in transgenic chloroplasts into the mouse circulatory system.

    PubMed

    Limaye, Arati; Koya, Vijay; Samsam, Mohtashem; Daniell, Henry

    2006-05-01

    Oral delivery of biopharmaceutical proteins expressed in plant cells should reduce their cost of production, purification, processing, cold storage, transportation, and delivery. However, poor intestinal absorption of intact proteins is a major challenge. To overcome this limitation, we investigate here the concept of receptor-mediated oral delivery of chloroplast-expressed foreign proteins. Therefore, the transmucosal carrier cholera toxin B-subunit and green fluorescent protein (CTB-GFP), separated by a furin cleavage site, was expressed via the tobacco chloroplast genome. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot analyses confirmed site-specific transgene integration and homoplasmy. Immunoblot analysis and ELISA confirmed expression of monomeric and pentameric forms of CTB-GFP, up to 21.3% of total soluble proteins. An in vitro furin cleavage assay confirmed integrity of the engineered furin cleavage site, and a GM1 binding assay confirmed the functionality of CTB-GFP pentamers. Following oral administration of CTB-GFP expressing leaf material to mice, GFP was observed in the mice intestinal mucosa, liver, and spleen in fluorescence and immunohistochemical studies, while CTB remained in the intestinal cell. This report of receptor-mediated oral delivery of a foreign protein into the circulatory system opens the door for low-cost production and delivery of human therapeutic proteins.

  11. Receptor-mediated oral delivery of a bioencapsulated green fluorescent protein expressed in transgenic chloroplasts into the mouse circulatory system

    PubMed Central

    Limaye, Arati; Koya, Vijay; Samsam, Mohtashem; Daniell, Henry

    2012-01-01

    Oral delivery of biopharmaceutical proteins expressed in plant cells should reduce their cost of production, purification, processing, cold storage, transportation, and delivery. However, poor intestinal absorption of intact proteins is a major challenge. To overcome this limitation, we investigate here the concept of receptor-mediated oral delivery of chloroplast-expressed foreign proteins. Therefore, the transmucosal carrier cholera toxin B-subunit and green fluorescent protein (CTB-GFP), separated by a furin cleavage site, was expressed via the tobacco chloroplast genome. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot analyses confirmed site-specific transgene integration and homoplasmy. Immunoblot analysis and ELISA confirmed expression of monomeric and pentameric forms of CTB-GFP, up to 21.3% of total soluble proteins. An in vitro furin cleavage assay confirmed integrity of the engineered furin cleavage site, and a GM1 binding assay confirmed the functionality of CTB-GFP pentamers. Following oral administration of CTB-GFP expressing leaf material to mice, GFP was observed in the mice intestinal mucosa, liver, and spleen in fluorescence and immunohistochemical studies, while CTB remained in the intestinal cell. This report of receptor-mediated oral delivery of a foreign protein into the circulatory system opens the door for low-cost production and delivery of human therapeutic proteins. PMID:16603603

  12. 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

  13. [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

  14. 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

    2014-06-27

    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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. A reliability measure of protein-protein interactions and a reliability measure-based search engine.

    PubMed

    Park, Byungkyu; Han, Kyungsook

    2010-02-01

    Many methods developed for estimating the reliability of protein-protein interactions are based on the topology of protein-protein interaction networks. This paper describes a new reliability measure for protein-protein interactions, which does not rely on the topology of protein interaction networks, but expresses biological information on functional roles, sub-cellular localisations and protein classes as a scoring schema. The new measure is useful for filtering many spurious interactions, as well as for estimating the reliability of protein interaction data. In particular, the reliability measure can be used to search protein-protein interactions with the desired reliability in databases. The reliability-based search engine is available at http://yeast.hpid.org. We believe this is the first search engine for interacting proteins, which is made available to public. The search engine and the reliability measure of protein interactions should provide useful information for determining proteins to focus on.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Rapid diagnosis and quantification of herpes simplex virus with a green fluorescent protein reporter system.

    PubMed

    Kung, S H; Wang, Y C; Lin, C H; Kuo, R L; Liu, W T

    2000-11-01

    A genetically modified cell line (Vero-ICP10-EGFP) was constructed for detection of herpes simplex virus (HSV) by a simple, rapid and direct method. The cell line was developed by stable transfection of Vero cell with a plasmid encoding the green fluorescent protein (GFP) driven by the promoter of the HSV-2 ICP10 gene. As early as 6 h after infection with HSV, fluorescence-emitting cells can be observed under a fluorescence microscope. A single infected cell emitting fluorescence can be observed with soft agar overlay by inverted fluorescence microscopy. No induction of detectable fluorescence was seen following infections with human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), varicella zoster virus (VZV), coxsackievirus A16 and enterovirus 71. Analysis by flow cytometry also demonstrated that intensity of the triggered fluorescence is proportional to the titer of HSV inoculated. Taken together, this novel GFP reporter system could become a useful means for rapid detection and quantification of HSV in clinical specimens.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Structural basis for the fast maturation of Arthropoda green fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Evdokimov, Artem G; Pokross, Matthew E; Egorov, Nikolay S; Zaraisky, Andrey G; Yampolsky, Ilya V; Merzlyak, Ekaterina M; Shkoporov, Andrey N; Sander, Ian; Lukyanov, Konstantin A; Chudakov, Dmitriy M

    2006-10-01

    Since the cloning of Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein (GFP) in 1992, a family of known GFP-like proteins has been growing rapidly. Today, it includes more than a hundred proteins with different spectral characteristics cloned from Cnidaria species. For some of these proteins, crystal structures have been solved, showing diversity in chromophore modifications and conformational states. However, we are still far from a complete understanding of the origin, functions and evolution of the GFP family. Novel proteins of the family were recently cloned from evolutionarily distant marine Copepoda species, phylum Arthropoda, demonstrating an extremely rapid generation of fluorescent signal. Here, we have generated a non-aggregating mutant of Copepoda fluorescent protein and solved its high-resolution crystal structure. It was found that the protein beta-barrel contains a pore, leading to the chromophore. Using site-directed mutagenesis, we showed that this feature is critical for the fast maturation of the chromophore. PMID:16936637

  5. 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

  6. Detection and identification of proteins using nanoparticle-fluorescent polymer `chemical nose' sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    You, Chang-Cheng; Miranda, Oscar R.; Gider, Basar; Ghosh, Partha S.; Kim, Ik-Bum; Erdogan, Belma; Krovi, Sai Archana; Bunz, Uwe H. F.; Rotello, Vincent M.

    2007-05-01

    A sensor array containing six non-covalent gold nanoparticle-fluorescent polymer conjugates has been created to detect, identify and quantify protein targets. The polymer fluorescence is quenched by gold nanoparticles; the presence of proteins disrupts the nanoparticle-polymer interaction, producing distinct fluorescence response patterns. These patterns are highly repeatable and are characteristic for individual proteins at nanomolar concentrations, and can be quantitatively differentiated by linear discriminant analysis (LDA). Based on a training matrix generated at protein concentrations of an identical ultraviolet absorbance at 280 nm (A280 = 0.005), LDA, combined with ultraviolet measurements, has been successfully used to identify 52 unknown protein samples (seven different proteins) with an accuracy of 94.2%. This work demonstrates the construction of novel nanomaterial-based protein detector arrays with potential applications in medical diagnostics.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Very Bright Green Fluorescent Proteins from the Pontellid Copepod Pontella mimocerami

    PubMed Central

    Hunt, Marguerite E.; Scherrer, Michael P.; Ferrari, Frank D.; Matz, Mikhail V.

    2010-01-01

    Background Fluorescent proteins (FP) homologous to the green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria have revolutionized biomedical research due to their usefulness as genetically encoded fluorescent labels. Fluorescent proteins from copepods are particularly promising due to their high brightness and rapid fluorescence development. Results Here we report two novel FPs from Pontella mimocerami (Copepoda, Calanoida, Pontellidae), which were identified via fluorescence screening of a bacterial cDNA expression library prepared from the whole-body total RNA of the animal. The proteins are very similar in sequence and spectroscopic properties. They possess high molar extinction coefficients (79,000 M−1 cm−) and quantum yields (0.92), which make them more than two-fold brighter than the most common FP marker, EGFP. Both proteins form oligomers, which we were able to counteract to some extent by mutagenesis of the N-terminal region; however, this particular modification resulted in substantial drop in brightness. Conclusions The spectroscopic characteristics of the two P. mimocerami proteins place them among the brightest green FPs ever described. These proteins may therefore become valuable additions to the in vivo imaging toolkit. PMID:20644720

  10. A discussion of molecular biology methods for protein engineering.

    PubMed

    Zawaira, Alexander; Pooran, Anil; Barichievy, Samantha; Chopera, Denis

    2012-05-01

    A number of molecular biology techniques are available to generate variants from a particular start gene for eventual protein expression. We discuss the basic principles of these methods in a repertoire that may be used to achieve the elemental steps in protein engineering. These include site-directed, deletion and insertion mutagenesis. We provide detailed case studies, drawn from our own experiences, packaged together with conceptual discussions and include an analysis of the techniques presented with regards to their uses in protein engineering.

  11. Protein-flexibility mediated coupling between photoswitching kinetics and surrounding viscosity of a photochromic fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Kao, Ya-Ting; Zhu, Xinxin; Min, Wei

    2012-02-28

    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. Subcellular distribution of mutant movement proteins of Cucumber mosaic virus fused to green fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Canto, Tomas; Palukaitis, Peter

    2005-04-01

    The subcellular distribution of the movement proteins (MPs) of nine alanine-scanning mutants of Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), fused to the green fluorescent protein (GFP) and expressed from CMV, was determined by confocal microscopy of infected epidermal cells of Nicotiana tabacum and Nicotiana benthamiana, as well as infected N. benthamiana protoplasts. Only those mutant MPs that were functional for movement in all host species tested localized to plasmodesmata of infected epidermal cells and to tubules extending from the surface of infected protoplasts, as for wild-type CMV 3a MP. Various mutant MPs that were either conditionally functional for movement or dysfunctional for movement did not localize to plasmodesmata and did not form tubules on the surface of infected protoplasts. Rather, they showed distribution to different extents throughout the infected cells, including the cytoplasm, nucleus or the plasma membrane. The CMV 3a MP also did not associate with microtubules.

  13. Characterization of four potential laser-induced fluorescence tracers for diesel engine applications.

    PubMed

    Trost, Johannes; Zigan, Lars; Leipertz, Alfred; Sahoo, Dipankar; Miles, Paul C

    2013-11-20

    Four potential laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) tracers, 1-phenyloctane, 1-phenyldecane, 1-methylnaphthalene, and 2-methylnaphthalene, are characterized for diesel engine applications. These tracers, embedded in the diesel primary reference fuels n-C₁₆H₃₄ and iso-C₁₆H₃₄, match the relevant physical properties of commercial diesel fuel much better than the commonly used toluene/iso-octane/n-heptane tracer-fuel system does. The temperature and pressure dependencies of the fluorescence intensities and spectra were measured in a flow cell in nitrogen for each candidate tracer molecule. The results show that the signal intensities of the methylnaphthalenes are about two orders of magnitude higher than for 1-phenyloctane and 1-phenyldecane and show a strong temperature but no pressure, dependence. An analysis of the fluorescence spectrum of 1-methylnaphthalene shows that it also can be used for two-color detection LIF thermometry by choosing appropriate optical filters.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. The role of protein characteristics in the formation and fluorescence of Au nanoclusters.

    PubMed

    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.

  17. Fiber-optic system for monitoring fast photoactivation dynamics of optical highlighter fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Pei, Zhiguo; Qin, Lingsong; Zhang, Zhihong; Zeng, Shaoqun; Huang, Zhen-Li

    2011-08-01

    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.

  18. 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.

  19. Engineered Protein Machines: Emergent Tools for Synthetic Biology.

    PubMed

    Glasscock, Cameron J; Lucks, Julius B; DeLisa, Matthew P

    2016-01-21

    Nature has evolved an array of intricate protein assemblies that work together to perform the chemistry that maintains life. These protein machines function with exquisite specificity and coordination to accomplish their tasks, from DNA and RNA synthesis to protein folding and post-translational modifications. Despite their complexity, synthetic biologists have succeeded in redesigning many aspects of these molecular machines. For example, natural DNA polymerases have now been engineered to catalyze the synthesis of alternative genetic polymers called XNAs, orthogonal RNA polymerases and ribosomes have been engineered to enable the construction of genetic logic gates, and protein biogenesis machinery such as chaperonins and protein translocons have been repurposed to improve folding and expression of recombinant proteins. In this Review, we highlight the progress made in understanding, engineering, and repurposing bacterial protein machines for use in synthetic biology and biotechnology.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Polyacrylamide hydrogel encapsulated E. coli expressing metal-sensing green fluorescent protein as a potential tool for copper ion determination

    PubMed Central

    Tantimongcolwat, Tanawut; Isarankura-Na-Ayudhya, Chartchalerm; Srisarin, Apapan; Galla, Hans-Joachim; Prachayasittikul, Virapong

    2014-01-01

    A simple, inexpensive and field applicable metal determination system would be a powerful tool for the efficient control of metal ion contamination in various sources e.g. drinking-water, water reservoir and waste discharges. In this study, we developed a cell-based metal sensor for specific and real-time detection of copper ions. E. coli expressing metal-sensing green fluorescent protein (designated as TG1/(CG)6GFP and TG1/H6CdBP4GFP) were constructed and served as a metal analytical system. Copper ions were found to exert a fluorescence quenching effect, while zinc and cadmium ions caused minor fluorescence enhancement in the engineered bacterial suspension. To construct a user-friendly and reagentless metal detection system, TG1/H6CdBP4GFP and TG1/(CG)6GFP were encapsulated in polyacrylamide hydrogels that were subsequently immobilized on an optical fiber equipped with a fluorescence detection module. The sensor could be applied to measure metal ions by simply dipping the encapsulated bacteria into a metal solution and monitoring fluorescence changes in real time as a function of the metal concentration in solution. The sensor system demonstrated high specificity toward copper ions. The fluorescence intensities of the encapsulated TG1/(CG)6GFP and TG1/H6CdBP4GFP were quenched by approximately 70 % and 80 % by a high-dose of copper ions (50 mM), respectively. The level of fluorescence quenching exhibited a direct correlation with the copper concentration, with a linear correlation coefficient (r) of 0.99. The cell-based metal sensor was able to efficiently monitor copper concentrations ranging between 5 M and 50 mM, encompassing the maximum allowed copper contamination in drinking water (31.15 M) established by the WHO. Furthermore, the cell-based metal sensor could undergo prolonged storage for at least 2 weeks without significantly influencing the copper sensitivity. PMID:26417267

  3. Polyacrylamide hydrogel encapsulated E. coli expressing metal-sensing green fluorescent protein as a potential tool for copper ion determination.

    PubMed

    Tantimongcolwat, Tanawut; Isarankura-Na-Ayudhya, Chartchalerm; Srisarin, Apapan; Galla, Hans-Joachim; Prachayasittikul, Virapong

    2014-01-01

    A simple, inexpensive and field applicable metal determination system would be a powerful tool for the efficient control of metal ion contamination in various sources e.g. drinking-water, water reservoir and waste discharges. In this study, we developed a cell-based metal sensor for specific and real-time detection of copper ions. E. coli expressing metal-sensing green fluorescent protein (designated as TG1/(CG)6GFP and TG1/H6CdBP4GFP) were constructed and served as a metal analytical system. Copper ions were found to exert a fluorescence quenching effect, while zinc and cadmium ions caused minor fluorescence enhancement in the engineered bacterial suspension. To construct a user-friendly and reagentless metal detection system, TG1/H6CdBP4GFP and TG1/(CG)6GFP were encapsulated in polyacrylamide hydrogels that were subsequently immobilized on an optical fiber equipped with a fluorescence detection module. The sensor could be applied to measure metal ions by simply dipping the encapsulated bacteria into a metal solution and monitoring fluorescence changes in real time as a function of the metal concentration in solution. The sensor system demonstrated high specificity toward copper ions. The fluorescence intensities of the encapsulated TG1/(CG)6GFP and TG1/H6CdBP4GFP were quenched by approximately 70 % and 80 % by a high-dose of copper ions (50 mM), respectively. The level of fluorescence quenching exhibited a direct correlation with the copper concentration, with a linear correlation coefficient (r) of 0.99. The cell-based metal sensor was able to efficiently monitor copper concentrations ranging between 5 M and 50 mM, encompassing the maximum allowed copper contamination in drinking water (31.15 M) established by the WHO. Furthermore, the cell-based metal sensor could undergo prolonged storage for at least 2 weeks without significantly influencing the copper sensitivity. PMID:26417267

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Green-lighting green fluorescent protein: Faster and more efficient folding by eliminating a cis–trans peptide isomerization event

    PubMed Central

    Rosenman, David J; Huang, Yao-ming; Xia, Ke; Fraser, Keith; Jones, Victoria E; Lamberson, Colleen M; Van Roey, Patrick; Colón, Wilfredo; Bystroff, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Wild-type green fluorescent protein (GFP) folds on a time scale of minutes. The slow step in folding is a cis–trans peptide bond isomerization. The only conserved cis-peptide bond in the native GFP structure, at P89, was remodeled by the insertion of two residues, followed by iterative energy minimization and side chain design. The engineered GFP was synthesized and found to fold faster and more efficiently than its template protein, recovering 50% more of its fluorescence upon refolding. The slow phase of folding is faster and smaller in amplitude, and hysteresis in refolding has been eliminated. The elimination of a previously reported kinetically trapped state in refolding suggests that X-P89 is trans in the trapped state. A 2.55 Å resolution crystal structure revealed that the new variant contains only trans-peptide bonds, as designed. This is the first instance of a computationally remodeled fluorescent protein that folds faster and more efficiently than wild type. PMID:24408076

  7. Real-time imaging of dynamic translocation of fluorescent proteins at synapses in living neurons.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Koninck, Paul

    2003-02-01

    To understand the biology of living cells, such as the neurons in our brain, we focus on the molecular signaling interactions that proteins perform intracellularly. We have been studying the behavior of an enzyme, termed 'CaMKII', inside living neurons maintained in tissue culture. This enzyme plays a critical role in the control of synaptic transmission. Such role may involve the dynamic translocation of the enzyme at synaptic sites upon specific stimuli. To study this translocation, we use a cellular imaging technique that allows us to monitor the movement and targeting of CaMKII tagged by genetic engineering with a green fluorescent protein (GFP). We find that the enzyme translocates within seconds to synapses upon synaptic activation by neurotransmitter application. Our approach has lead to several key findings on the regulation of CaMKII translocation to the synapse and on its potential role in synaptic plasticity. However, several new advances in photonics and image analysis, which we will implement in our laboratory, will greatly help pushing the limits of our resolution of such type molecular event in living cells.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Vectors for multi-color bimolecular fluorescence complementation to investigate protein-protein interactions in living plant cells

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Lan-Ying; Fang, Mei-Jane; Kuang, Lin-Yun; Gelvin, Stanton B

    2008-01-01

    Background The investigation of protein-protein interactions is important for characterizing protein function. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) has recently gained interest as a relatively easy and inexpensive method to visualize protein-protein interactions in living cells. BiFC uses "split YFP" tags on proteins to detect interactions: If the tagged proteins interact, they may bring the two split fluorophore components together such that they can fold and reconstitute fluorescence. The sites of interaction can be monitored using epifluorescence or confocal microscopy. However, "conventional" BiFC can investigate interactions only between two proteins at a time. There are instances when one may wish to offer a particular "bait" protein to several "prey" proteins simultaneously. Preferential interaction of the bait protein with one of the prey proteins, or different sites of interaction between the bait protein and multiple prey proteins, may thus be observed. Results We have constructed a series of gene expression vectors, based upon the pSAT series of vectors, to facilitate the practice of multi-color BiFC. The bait protein is tagged with the C-terminal portion of CFP (cCFP), and prey proteins are tagged with the N-terminal portions of either Venus (nVenus) or Cerulean (nCerulean). Interaction of cCFP-tagged proteins with nVenus-tagged proteins generates yellow fluorescence, whereas interaction of cCFP-tagged proteins with nCerulean-tagged proteins generates blue fluorescence. Additional expression of mCherry indicates transfected cells and sub-cellular structures. Using this system, we have determined in both tobacco BY-2 protoplasts and in onion epidermal cells that Agrobacterium VirE2 protein interacts with the Arabidopsis nuclear transport adapter protein importin α-1 in the cytoplasm, whereas interaction of VirE2 with a different importin α isoform, importin α-4, occurs predominantly in the nucleus. Conclusion Multi-color BiFC is a useful

  11. Tobacco mosaic virus movement protein interacts with green fluorescent protein-tagged microtubule end-binding protein 1.

    PubMed

    Brandner, Katrin; Sambade, Adrian; Boutant, Emmanuel; Didier, Pascal; Mély, Yves; Ritzenthaler, Christophe; Heinlein, Manfred

    2008-06-01

    The targeting of the movement protein (MP) of Tobacco mosaic virus to plasmodesmata involves the actin/endoplasmic reticulum network and does not require an intact microtubule cytoskeleton. Nevertheless, the ability of MP to facilitate the cell-to-cell spread of infection is tightly correlated with interactions of the protein with microtubules, indicating that the microtubule system is involved in the transport of viral RNA. While the MP acts like a microtubule-associated protein able to stabilize microtubules during late infection stages, the protein was also shown to cause the inactivation of the centrosome upon expression in mammalian cells, thus suggesting that MP may interact with factors involved in microtubule attachment, nucleation, or polymerization. To further investigate the interactions of MP with the microtubule system in planta, we expressed the MP in the presence of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-fused microtubule end-binding protein 1a (EB1a) of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana; AtEB1a:GFP). The two proteins colocalize and interact in vivo as well as in vitro and exhibit mutual functional interference. These findings suggest that MP interacts with EB1 and that this interaction may play a role in the associations of MP with the microtubule system during infection.

  12. 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,…

  13. 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.

  14. Luminescent conjugated oligothiophenes for sensitive fluorescent assignment of protein inclusion bodies.

    PubMed

    Klingstedt, Therése; Blechschmidt, Cristiane; Nogalska, Anna; Prokop, Stefan; Häggqvist, Bo; Danielsson, Olof; Engel, W King; Askanas, Valerie; Heppner, Frank L; Nilsson, K Peter R

    2013-03-18

    Small hydrophobic ligands identifying intracellular protein deposits are of great interest, as protein inclusion bodies are the pathological hallmark of several degenerative diseases. Here we report that fluorescent amyloid ligands, termed luminescent conjugated oligothiophenes (LCOs), rapidly and with high sensitivity detect protein inclusion bodies in skeletal muscle tissue from patients with sporadic inclusion body myositis (s-IBM). LCOs having a conjugated backbone of at least five thiophene units emitted strong fluorescence upon binding, and showed co-localization with proteins reported to accumulate in s-IBM protein inclusion bodies. Compared with conventional amyloid ligands, LCOs identified a larger fraction of immunopositive inclusion bodies. When the conjugated thiophene backbone was extended with terminal carboxyl groups, the LCO revealed striking spectral differences between distinct protein inclusion bodies. We conclude that 1) LCOs are sensitive, rapid and powerful tools for identifying protein inclusion bodies and 2) LCOs identify a wider range of protein inclusion bodies than conventional amyloid ligands.

  15. Fluorescent Ensemble Based on Bispyrene Fluorophore and Surfactant Assemblies: Sensing and Discriminating Proteins in Aqueous Solution.

    PubMed

    Fan, Junmei; Ding, Liping; Bo, Yu; Fang, Yu

    2015-10-14

    A particular bispyrene fluorophore (1) with two pyrene moieties covalently linked via a hydrophilic spacer was synthesized. Fluorescence measurements reveal that the fluorescence emission of 1 could be well modulated by a cationic surfactant, dodecyltrimethylammonium bromide (DTAB). Protein sensing studies illustrate that the selected ensemble based on 1/DTAB assemblies exhibits ratiometric responses to nonmetalloproteins and turn-off responses to metalloproteins, which can be used to differentiate the two types of proteins. Moreover, negatively charged nonmetalloproteins can be discriminated from the positively charged ones according to the difference in ratiometric responses. Fluorescence sensing studies with control bispyrenes indicate that the polarity of the spacer connecting two pyrene moieties plays an important role in locating bispyrene fluorophore in DTAB assemblies, which further influences its sensing behaviors to noncovalent interacting proteins. This study sheds light on the influence of the probe structure on the sensing performance of a fluorescent ensemble based on probe and surfactant assemblies.

  16. 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.

  17. Monomeric Garnet, a far-red fluorescent protein for live-cell STED imaging.

    PubMed

    Hense, Anika; Prunsche, Benedikt; Gao, Peng; Ishitsuka, Yuji; Nienhaus, Karin; Nienhaus, G Ulrich

    2015-12-09

    The advancement of far-red emitting variants of the green fluorescent protein (GFP) is crucially important for imaging live cells, tissues and organisms. Despite notable efforts, far-red marker proteins still need further optimization to match the performance of their green counterparts. Here we present mGarnet, a robust monomeric marker protein with far-red fluorescence peaking at 670 nm. Thanks to its large extinction coefficient of 95,000 M(-1)cm(-1), mGarnet can be efficiently excited with 640-nm light on the red edge of its 598-nm excitation band. A large Stokes shift allows essentially the entire fluorescence emission to be collected even with 640-nm excitation, counterbalancing the lower fluorescence quantum yield of mGarnet, 9.1%, that is typical of far-red FPs. We demonstrate an excellent performance as a live-cell fusion marker in STED microscopy, using 640 nm excitation and 780 nm depletion wavelengths.

  18. 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.

  19. Unraveling transcription factor interactions with heterochromatin protein 1 using fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Siegel, Amanda P.; Hays, Nicole M.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract. 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. PMID:23392382

  20. Genetically engineered, biarsenically labeled influenza virus allows visualization of viral NS1 protein in living cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Yang; Lu, Xinya; Li, Junwei; Bérubé, Nathalie; Giest, Kerri-Lane; Liu, Qiang; Anderson, Deborah H; Zhou, Yan

    2010-07-01

    Real-time fluorescence imaging of viral proteins in living cells provides a valuable means to study virus-host interactions. The challenge of generating replication-competent fluorescent influenza A virus is that the segmented genome does not allow fusion of a fluorescent protein gene to any viral gene. Here, we introduced the tetracysteine (TC) biarsenical labeling system into influenza virus in order to fluorescently label viral protein in the virus life cycle. We generated infectious influenza A viruses bearing a small TC tag (CCPGCC) in the loop/linker regions of the NS1 proteins. In the background of A/Puerto Rico/8/34 (H1N1) (PR8) virus, the TC tag can be inserted into NS1 after amino acid 52 (AA52) (PR8-410), AA79 (PR8-412), or AA102 (PR8-413) or the TC tag can be inserted and replace amino acids 79 to 84 (AA79-84) (PR8-411). Although PR8-410, PR8-411, and PR8-412 viruses are attenuated than the wild-type (WT) virus to some extent in multiple-cycle infection, their growth potential is similar to that of the WT virus during a single cycle of infection, and their NS1 subcellular localization and viral protein synthesis rate are quite similar to those of the WT virus. Furthermore, labeling with membrane-permeable biarsenical dye resulted in fluorescent NS1 protein in the context of virus infection. We could exploit this strategy on NS1 protein of A/Texas/36/91 (H1N1) (Tx91) by successfully rescuing a TC-tagged virus, Tx91-445, which carries the TC tag replacement of AA79-84. The infectivity of Tx91-445 virus was similar to that of WT Tx91 during multiple cycles of replication and a single cycle of replication. The NS1 protein derived from Tx91-445 can be fluorescently labeled in living cells. Finally, with biarsenical labeling, the engineered replication-competent virus allowed us to visualize NS1 protein nuclear import in virus-infected cells in real time.

  1. 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.

  2. Engineering Protein Hydrogels Using SpyCatcher-SpyTag Chemistry.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiaoye; Fang, Jie; Xue, Bin; Fu, Linglan; Li, Hongbin

    2016-09-12

    Constructing hydrogels from engineered proteins has attracted significant attention within the material sciences, owing to their myriad potential applications in biomedical engineering. Developing efficient methods to cross-link tailored protein building blocks into hydrogels with desirable mechanical, physical, and functional properties is of paramount importance. By making use of the recently developed SpyCatcher-SpyTag chemistry, we successfully engineered protein hydrogels on the basis of engineered tandem modular elastomeric proteins. Our resultant protein hydrogels are soft but stable, and show excellent biocompatibility. As the first step, we tested the use of these hydrogels as a drug carrier, as well as in encapsulating human lung fibroblast cells. Our results demonstrate the robustness of the SpyCatcher-SpyTag chemistry, even when the SpyTag (or SpyCatcher) is flanked by folded globular domains. These results demonstrate that SpyCatcher-SpyTag chemistry can be used to engineer protein hydrogels from tandem modular elastomeric proteins that can find applications in tissue engineering, in fundamental mechano-biological studies, and as a controlled drug release vehicle. PMID:27477779

  3. Engineering Protein Hydrogels Using SpyCatcher-SpyTag Chemistry.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiaoye; Fang, Jie; Xue, Bin; Fu, Linglan; Li, Hongbin

    2016-09-12

    Constructing hydrogels from engineered proteins has attracted significant attention within the material sciences, owing to their myriad potential applications in biomedical engineering. Developing efficient methods to cross-link tailored protein building blocks into hydrogels with desirable mechanical, physical, and functional properties is of paramount importance. By making use of the recently developed SpyCatcher-SpyTag chemistry, we successfully engineered protein hydrogels on the basis of engineered tandem modular elastomeric proteins. Our resultant protein hydrogels are soft but stable, and show excellent biocompatibility. As the first step, we tested the use of these hydrogels as a drug carrier, as well as in encapsulating human lung fibroblast cells. Our results demonstrate the robustness of the SpyCatcher-SpyTag chemistry, even when the SpyTag (or SpyCatcher) is flanked by folded globular domains. These results demonstrate that SpyCatcher-SpyTag chemistry can be used to engineer protein hydrogels from tandem modular elastomeric proteins that can find applications in tissue engineering, in fundamental mechano-biological studies, and as a controlled drug release vehicle.

  4. 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.

  5. Flame front imaging in an internal-combustion engine simulator by laser-induced fluorescence of acetaldehyde.

    PubMed

    Arnold, A; Becker, H; Suntz, R; Monkhouse, P; Wolfrum, J; Maly, R; Pfister, W

    1990-08-01

    Acetaldehyde has been used as a fluorescent dopant for two-dimensional imaging of the flame front in an internalcombustion-engine simulator. The molecule was excited with a XeCl-laser-light sheet at 308 nm, and broadband fluorescence centered at 400 nm was detected. In this way, the flame front could be marked by mapping regions of unburned gas. Also, the intake process into the engine could be followed.

  6. Functional surface engineering of C-dots for fluorescent biosensing and in vivo bioimaging.

    PubMed

    Ding, Changqin; Zhu, Anwei; Tian, Yang

    2014-01-21

    Nanoparticles are promising scaffolds for applications such as imaging, chemical sensors and biosensors, diagnostics, drug delivery, catalysis, energy, photonics, medicine, and more. Surface functionalization of nanoparticles introduces an additional dimension in controlling nanoparticle interfacial properties and provides an effective bridge to connect nanoparticles to biological systems. With fascinating photoluminescence properties, carbon dots (C-dots), carbon-containing nanoparticles that are attracting considerable attention as a new type of quantum dot, are becoming both an important class of imaging probes and a versatile platform for engineering multifunctional nanosensors. In order to transfer C-dots from proof-of-concept studies toward real world applications such as in vivo bioimaging and biosensing, careful design and engineering of C-dot probes is becoming increasingly important. A comprehensive knowledge of how C-dot surfaces with various properties behave is essential for engineering C-dots with useful imaging properties such as high quantum yield, stability, and low toxicity, and with desirable biosensing properties such as high selectivity, sensitivity, and accuracy. Several reviews in recent years have reported preparation methods and properties of C-dots and described their application in biosensors, catalysis, photovoltatic cells, and more. However, no one has yet systematically summarized the surface engineering of C-dots, nor the use of C-dots as fluorescent nanosensors or probes for in vivo imaging in cells, tissues, and living organisms. In this Account, we discuss the major design principles and criteria for engineering the surface functionality of C-dots for biological applications. These criteria include brightness, long-term stability, and good biocompatibility. We review recent developments in designing C-dot surfaces with various functionalities for use as nanosensors or as fluorescent probes with fascinating analytical performance

  7. 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

  8. Engineering Proteins for Thermostability with iRDP Web Server.

    PubMed

    Panigrahi, Priyabrata; Sule, Manas; 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) assay for protein-protein interaction in onion cells using the helios gene gun.

    PubMed

    Hollender, Courtney A; Liu, Zhongchi

    2010-06-12

    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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. Application of cell-surface engineering for visualization of yeast in bread dough: development of a fluorescent bio-imaging technique in the mixing process of dough.

    PubMed

    Maeda, Tatsuro; Shiraga, Seizaburo; Araki, Tetsuya; Ueda, Mitsuyoshi; Yamada, Masaharu; Takeya, Koji; Sagara, Yasuyuki

    2009-07-01

    Cell-surface engineering (Ueda et al., 2000) has been applied to develop a novel technique to visualize yeast in bread dough. Enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) was bonded to the surface of yeast cells, and 0.5% EGFP yeasts were mixed into the dough samples at four different mixing stages. The samples were placed on a cryostat at -30 degrees C and sliced at 10 microm. The sliced samples were observed at an excitation wavelength of 480 nm and a fluorescent wavelength of 520 nm. The results indicated that the combination of the EGFP-displayed yeasts, rapid freezing, and cryo-sectioning made it possible to visualize 2-D distribution of yeast in bread dough to the extent that the EGFP yeasts could be clearly distinguished from the auto-fluorescent background of bread dough. PMID:19584550

  20. Concatenation of cyan and yellow fluorescent proteins for efficient resonance energy transfer.

    PubMed

    Shimozono, Satoshi; Hosoi, Haruko; Mizuno, Hideaki; Fukano, Takashi; Tahara, Tahei; Miyawaki, Atsushi

    2006-05-23

    Highly efficient fluorescence resonance energy transfer between cyan(CFP) and yellow fluorescent proteins (YFP), the cyan- and yellow-emitting variants of the Aequorea green fluorescent protein, respectively, was achieved by tightly concatenating the two proteins. After the C-terminus of CFP and the N-terminus of YFP were truncated by 11 and 5 amino acids, respectively, the proteins were fused through a leucine-glutamate dipeptide. The resulting chimeric protein, which we called Cy11.5, exhibited a simple emission spectrum that peaked at 527 nm when the protein was excited at 436 nm. The time-resolved emission of Cy11.5 was measured using a streak camera. After excitation of Cy11.5 with a 400 nm ultrashort pulse, a fast decay of the CFP emission and a concomitant rise of the YFP emission were observed with a lifetime of 66 ps. By contrast, the emission from CFP alone showed a decay component with a lifetime of 2.9 ns. We concluded that in fully folded Cy11.5 molecules, intramolecular FRET occurred with an efficiency of 98%. Importantly, most Cy11.5 molecules were properly folded, and the protein was highly resistant to all of the tested proteases. In living cells, therefore, Cy11.5 behaved as a single fluorescent protein with a broad excitation spectrum. Moreover, Cy11.5 was used as an optical highlighter after photobleaching of YFP. When HeLa cells expressing Cy11.5 were irradiated at 514.5 nm, a 10-fold increase in the 475 nm fluorescence intensity was observed. These features make Cy11.5 useful as an optical highlighter and a new-colored fluorescent protein for multicolor imaging.

  1. Photoconversion of purified fluorescent proteins and dual-probe optical highlighting in live cells.

    PubMed

    Kremers, Gert-Jan; Piston, David

    2010-01-01

    Photoconvertible fluorescent proteins (pc-FPs) are a class of fluorescent proteins with "optical highlighter" capability, meaning that the color of fluorescence can be changed by exposure to light of a specific wavelength. Optical highlighting allows noninvasive marking of a subpopulation of fluorescent molecules, and is therefore ideal for tracking single cells or organelles. Critical parameters for efficient photoconversion are the intensity and the exposure time of the photoconversion light. If the intensity is too low, photoconversion will be slow or not occur at all. On the other hand, too much intensity or too long exposure can photobleach the protein and thereby reduce the efficiency of photoconversion. This protocol describes a general approach how to set up a confocal laser scanning microscope for pc-FP photoconversion applications. First, we describe a procedure for preparing purified protein droplet samples. This sample format is very convenient for studying the photophysical behavior of fluorescent proteins under the microscope. Second, we will use the protein droplet sample to show how to configure the microscope for photoconversion. And finally, we will show how to perform optical highlighting in live cells, including dual-probe optical highlighting with mOrange2 and Dronpa. PMID:20613710

  2. Photoconversion of purified fluorescent proteins and dual-probe optical highlighting in live cells.

    PubMed

    Kremers, Gert-Jan; Piston, David

    2010-06-26

    Photoconvertible fluorescent proteins (pc-FPs) are a class of fluorescent proteins with "optical highlighter" capability, meaning that the color of fluorescence can be changed by exposure to light of a specific wavelength. Optical highlighting allows noninvasive marking of a subpopulation of fluorescent molecules, and is therefore ideal for tracking single cells or organelles. Critical parameters for efficient photoconversion are the intensity and the exposure time of the photoconversion light. If the intensity is too low, photoconversion will be slow or not occur at all. On the other hand, too much intensity or too long exposure can photobleach the protein and thereby reduce the efficiency of photoconversion. This protocol describes a general approach how to set up a confocal laser scanning microscope for pc-FP photoconversion applications. First, we describe a procedure for preparing purified protein droplet samples. This sample format is very convenient for studying the photophysical behavior of fluorescent proteins under the microscope. Second, we will use the protein droplet sample to show how to configure the microscope for photoconversion. And finally, we will show how to perform optical highlighting in live cells, including dual-probe optical highlighting with mOrange2 and Dronpa.

  3. Vibrio azureus emits blue-shifted light via an accessory blue fluorescent protein.

    PubMed

    Yoshizawa, Susumu; Karatani, Hajime; Wada, Minoru; Kogure, Kazuhiro

    2012-04-01

    Luminous marine bacteria usually emit bluish-green light with a peak emission wavelength (λ(max) ) at about 490 nm. Some species belonging to the genus Photobacterium are exceptions, producing an accessory blue fluorescent protein (lumazine protein: LumP) that causes a blue shift, from λ(max)  ≈ 490 to λ(max)  ≈ 476 nm. However, the incidence of blue-shifted light emission or the presence of accessory fluorescent proteins in bacteria of the genus Vibrio has never been reported. From our spectral analysis of light emitted by 16 luminous strains of the genus Vibrio, it was revealed that most strains of Vibrio azureus emit a blue-shifted light with a peak at approximately 472 nm, whereas other Vibrio strains emit light with a peak at around 482 nm. Therefore, we investigated the mechanism underlying this blue shift in V. azureus NBRC 104587(T) . Here, we describe the blue-shifted light emission spectra and the isolation of a blue fluorescent protein. Intracellular protein analyses showed that this strain had a blue fluorescent protein (that we termed VA-BFP), the fluorescent spectrum of which was almost identical to that of the in vivo light emission spectrum of the strain. This result strongly suggested that VA-BFP was responsible for the blue-shifted light emission of V. azureus.

  4. 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

  5. [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

  6. 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.

  7. Reactive oxygen species in photochemistry of the red fluorescent protein "Killer Red".

    PubMed

    Vegh, Russell B; Solntsev, Kyril M; Kuimova, Marina K; Cho, Soohee; Liang, Yue; Loo, Bernard L W; Tolbert, Laren M; Bommarius, Andreas S

    2011-05-01

    The fluorescent protein aptly named "Killer Red" (KRed) is capable of killing transfected cells and inactivating fused proteins upon exposure to visible light in the presence of oxygen. We have investigated the source of the bioactive species through a variety of photophysical and photochemical techniques. Our results indicate a Type I (electron transfer mediated) photosensitizing mechanism.

  8. Reengineering of a fluorescent zinc sensor protein yields the first genetically encoded cadmium probe.

    PubMed

    Vinkenborg, Jan L; van Duijnhoven, Sander M J; Merkx, Maarten

    2011-11-21

    Introduction of a (Cys)(4) metal binding site at the dimerization interface of two fluorescent protein domains yields a chelating FRET sensor protein that shows a 2500-fold selectivity for Cd(2+) over Zn(2+) by taking advantage of their different ionic radii. PMID:21986860

  9. GFP Tagging of Sieve Element Occlusion (SEO) Proteins Results in Green Fluorescent Forisomes

    PubMed Central

    Pélissier, Hélène C.; Peters, Winfried S.; Collier, Ray; van Bel, Aart J. E.; Knoblauch, Michael

    2008-01-01

    Forisomes are Ca2+-driven, ATP-independent contractile protein bodies that reversibly occlude sieve elements in faboid legumes. They apparently consist of at least three proteins; potential candidates have been described previously as ‘FOR’ proteins. We isolated three genes from Medicago truncatula that correspond to the putative forisome proteins and expressed their green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion products in Vicia faba and Glycine max using the composite plant methodology. In both species, expression of any of the constructs resulted in homogenously fluorescent forisomes that formed sieve tube plugs upon stimulation; no GFP fluorescence occurred elsewhere. Isolated fluorescent forisomes reacted to Ca2+ and chelators by contraction and expansion, respectively, and did not lose fluorescence in the process. Wild-type forisomes showed no affinity for free GFP in vitro. The three proteins shared numerous conserved motifs between themselves and with hypothetical proteins derived from the genomes of M. truncatula, Vitis vinifera and Arabidopsis thaliana. However, they showed neither significant similarities to proteins of known function nor canonical metal-binding motifs. We conclude that ‘FOR’-like proteins are components of forisomes that are encoded by a well-defined gene family with relatives in taxa that lack forisomes. Since the mnemonic FOR is already registered and in use for unrelated genes, we suggest the acronym SEO (sieve element occlusion) for this family. The absence of binding sites for divalent cations suggests that the Ca2+ binding responsible for forisome contraction is achieved either by as yet unidentified additional proteins, or by SEO proteins through a novel, uncharacterized mechanism. PMID:18784195

  10. An arsenic fluorescent compound as a novel probe to study arsenic-binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Femia, A Lis; Temprana, C Facundo; Santos, Javier; Carbajal, María Laura; Amor, María Silvia; Grasselli, Mariano; Alonso, Silvia Del V

    2012-12-01

    Arsenic-binding proteins are under continuous research. Their identification and the elucidation of arsenic/protein interaction mechanisms are important because the biological effects of these complexes may be related not only to arsenic but also to the arsenic/protein structure. Although many proteins bearing a CXXC motif have been found to bind arsenic in vivo, new tools are necessary to identify new arsenic targets and allow research on protein/arsenic complexes. In this work, we analyzed the performance of the fluorescent compound APAO-FITC (synthesized from p-aminophenylarsenoxide, APAO, and fluorescein isothiocyanate, FITC) in arsenic/protein binding assays using thioredoxin 1 (Trx) as an arsenic-binding protein model. The Trx-APAO-FITC complex was studied through different spectroscopic techniques involving UV-Vis, fluorescence, atomic absorption, infrared and circular dichroism. Our results show that APAO-FITC binds efficiently and specifically to the Trx binding site, labeling the protein fluorescently, without altering its structure and activity. In summary, we were able to study a protein/arsenic complex model, using APAO-FITC as a labeling probe. The use of APAO-FITC in the identification of different protein and cell targets, as well as in in vivo biodistribution studies, conformational studies of arsenic-binding proteins, and studies for the design of drug delivery systems for arsenic anti-cancer therapies, is highly promising.

  11. Intrinsic fluorescence excitation-emission matrix spectral features of cottonseed protein fractions and the effects of denaturants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To better understand the functional and physicochemical properties of cottonseed protein, we investigated the intrinsic fluorescence excitation-emission matrix (EEM) spectral features of cottonseed protein isolate (CSPI) and sequentially extracted water (CSPw) and alkali (CSPa) protein fractions, an...

  12. 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.

  13. Quantitative GFP fluorescence as an indicator of recombinant protein synthesis in transgenic plants.

    PubMed

    Richards, H A; Halfhill, M D; Millwood, R J; Stewart, C N

    2003-09-01

    The utility of green fluorescent protein (GFP) for biological research is evident. A fluorescence-based method was developed to quantify GFP levels in transgenic plants and protein extracts. Fluorescence intensity was linear with increasing levels of GFP over a range that encompasses transgene expression in plants by the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S promoter. Standard curves were used to estimate GFP concentration in planta and in protein extracts. These values were consistent with ELISA measurements of GFP in protein extracts from transgenic plants, indicating that the technique is a reliable measure of recombinant GFP expression. The levels of in planta GFP expression in both homozygous and hemizygous plants was then estimated. Homozygous transgenic plants expressed twice the amount of GFP than hemizygous plants, suggesting additive transgene expression. This methodology may be useful to simplify the characterization of transgene expression in plants.

  14. Cholesterol determination using protein-templated fluorescent gold nanocluster probes.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xi; Baker, Gary A

    2013-11-12

    We describe the development of a fluorescent biosensor platform for soluble cholesterol based on bovine serum albumin-stabilized gold nanocluster probes co-dissolved with cholesterol oxidase (ChOx) in a surfactant emulsion system. Selective enzymatic oxidation of cholesterol to cholest-4-en-3-one by ChOx produces stoichiometric amounts of H2O2 by-product, generating a quenching response signaling the presence of cholesterol at clinically relevant levels (LOD ∼12 μM).

  15. 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.

  16. Engineering chimaeric proteins from fold fragments: 'hopeful monsters' in protein design.

    PubMed

    Höcker, Birte

    2013-10-01

    Modern highly complex proteins evolved from much simpler and less specialized subunits. The same concept can be applied in protein engineering to construct new well-folded proteins. Hybrid proteins or chimaeras can be built from contemporary protein fragments through illegitimate recombination. Even parts from different globular folds can be fitted together using rational design methodologies. Furthermore, intrinsic functional properties encoded in the fold fragments allow rapid adaptation of the new proteins and thus provide interesting starting scaffolds for further redesign.

  17. New tools for in vivo fluorescence tagging.

    PubMed

    Chapman, Sean; Oparka, Karl J; Roberts, Alison G

    2005-12-01

    Engineering of fluorescent proteins continues to produce new tools for in vivo studies. The current selection contains brighter, monomeric, spectral variants that will facilitate multiplex imaging and FRET, and a collection of optical highlighter proteins that might replace photoactivatable-GFP. These new highlighter proteins, which include proteins that have photoswitchable fluorescence characteristics and a protein whose fluorescence can be repeatedly turned on and off, should simplify refined analyses of protein dynamics and kinetics. Fluorescent protein-based systems have also been developed to allow facile detection of protein-protein interactions in planta. In addition, new tags in the form of peptides that bind fluorescent ligands and quantum dots offer the prospect of overcoming some of the limitations of fluorescent proteins such as excessive size and insufficient brightness.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Protein binding-induced surfactant aggregation variation: a new strategy of developing fluorescent aqueous sensor for proteins.

    PubMed

    Hu, Wenting; Ding, Liping; Cao, Jianhua; Liu, Lili; Wei, Yuting; Fang, Yu

    2015-03-01

    Novel strategies of developing fluorescent sensors for proteins are highly demanded. In this work, we particularly synthesized a cholesterol-derivatized pyrene probe. Its fluorescence emission is effectively tuned by the aggregation state of a cationic surfactant dodecyltrimethylammonium bromide (DTAB). The used probe/DTAB assemblies exhibit highly sensitive ratiometric responses to pepsin and ovalbumin egg (o-egg) with detection limits of 4.8 and 18.9 nM, respectively. The fluorescence changes indicate the protein-surfactant interaction leads to further aggregation of DTAB assemblies. The results from Tyndall effect and dynamic light scattering verify this assumption. The responses to pepsin and o-egg are due to their strong electrostatic or hydrophobic interaction with DTAB assemblies at pH 7.4. The present noncovalent supramolecular sensor represents a novel and simple strategy for sensing proteins, which is based on the encapsulated fluorophore probing the aggregation variation of the surfactant assemblies.

  2. Smart fluorescent proteins: innovation for barrier-free superresolution imaging in living cells.

    PubMed

    Tiwari, Dhermendra K; Nagai, Takeharu

    2013-05-01

    During the past decade, several novel fluorescence microscopy techniques have emerged that achieve incredible spatial and temporal resolution beyond the diffraction limit. These microscopy techniques depend on altered optical setups, unique fluorescent probes, or post-imaging analysis. Many of these techniques also depend strictly on the use of unique fluorescent proteins (FPs) with special photoswitching properties. These photoswitchable FPs are capable of switching between two states in response to light. All localization precision and patterned illumination techniques-such as photo-activation localization microscopy, stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy, reversible saturable optically linear transitions, and saturated structured illumination microscopy-take advantage of these inherent switching properties to achieve superior spatial resolution. This review provides extensive analysis of the positive and negative aspects of photoswitchable FPs, highlighting their application in diffraction-unlimited imaging and suggesting the most suitable fluorescent proteins for superresolution imaging.

  3. Multiphoton fluorescence spectra and lifetimes of biliverdins and their protein-associated complex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Chin-Jie; Wu, Cheng-Ham; Liu, Tzu-Ming

    2012-03-01

    To investigate whether endogenous biliverdins can serve as a fluorescence metabolic marker in cancer diagnosis, we measured their multiphoton fluorescence spectra and lifetimes with femtosecond Cr:forsterite laser. Excited at 1230nm, the two-photon fluorescence of biliverdins peaks around 670nm. The corresponding lifetime (<100ps) was much shorter than those of porphyrins (~10ns), which is another commonly present metabolites in living cells. Further mixing biliverdins with proteins like fetal bovine serum (FBS), biliverdins reductase A (BVRA), or heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), the yields of red autofluorescences didn't change a lot, but the corresponding lifetimes with HO-1 and BSA were lengthened to 200~300ps. This indicates that biliverdin can have an association with these proteins and change its lifetime. These spectral and temporal characteristics of fluorescence make biliverdin a potential marker fluorophore for hyperspectral diagnosis on the heme catabolism in human cells or tissues.

  4. Fluorescent dye conjugates of rabbit arylsulfatase A as a biological tracer for protein endocytosis.

    PubMed

    Hassan, Md Imtaiyaz; Waheed, Abdul; Ahmad, Faizan; Van Etten, Robert L

    2013-06-01

    Fluorescent dye conjugates of arylsulfatase A (ASA) from rabbit liver were prepared at pH 9.0 in 0.1 M sodium bicarbonate buffer. The modification of amino or sulphadryl groups by dichlorotriazinylamino-fluorescein or Lucifer yellow fluorescent dyes did not alter the characteristic features of the enzyme molecule such as enzyme activity, dimerization of the protein molecule at pH 4.5 and anomalous kinetics of the native enzyme. The fluorescence intensity of the Lucifer yellow enzyme conjugates were quenched when the pH of the protein solution was changed from pH 7.5 to 4.5. Therefore, the Lucifer yellow enzyme conjugate can be used to study the kinetics of pH-dependent association and dissociation of the ASA. Availability of such fluorescent dyes conjugates of ASA or other lysosomal enzyme may be used as a biological tracer to study the receptor dependent endocytosis of enzyme molecules. PMID:23636651

  5. 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.

  6. Protistan grazing analysis by flow cytometry using prey labeled by in vivo expression of fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Fu, Yutao; O'Kelly, Charles; Sieracki, Michael; Distel, Daniel L

    2003-11-01

    Selective grazing by protists can profoundly influence bacterial community structure, and yet direct, quantitative observation of grazing selectivity has been difficult to achieve. In this investigation, flow cytometry was used to study grazing by the marine heterotrophic flagellate Paraphysomonas imperforata on live bacterial cells genetically modified to express the fluorescent protein markers green fluorescent protein (GFP) and red fluorescent protein (RFP). Broad-host-range plasmids were constructed that express fluorescent proteins in three bacterial prey species, Escherichia coli, Enterobacter aerogenes, and Pseudomonas putida. Micromonas pusilla, an alga with red autofluorescence, was also used as prey. Predator-prey interactions were quantified by using a FACScan flow cytometer and analyzed by using a Perl program described here. Grazing preference of P. imperforata was influenced by prey type, size, and condition. In competitive feeding trials, P. imperforata consumed algal prey at significantly lower rates than FP (fluorescent protein)-labeled bacteria of similar or different size. Within-species size selection was also observed, but only for P. putida, the largest prey species examined; smaller cells of P. putida were grazed preferentially. No significant difference in clearance rate was observed between GFP- and RFP-labeled strains of the same prey species or between wild-type and GFP-labeled strains. In contrast, the common chemical staining method, 5-(4,6-dichloro-triazin-2-yl)-amino fluorescein hydrochloride, depressed clearance rates for bacterial prey compared to unlabeled or RFP-labeled cells.

  7. 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

  8. Mass Spectrometric Imaging of Red Fluorescent Protein in Breast Tumor Xenografts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. Analyzing the Homeostasis of Signaling Proteins by a Combination of Western Blot and Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Yi-Da; Sinzinger, Michael D.; Bovee-Geurts, Petra; Krause, Marina; Dinkla, Sip; Joosten, Irma; Koopman, Werner J.; Adjobo-Hermans, Merel J.W.; Brock, Roland

    2011-01-01

    The determination of intracellular protein concentrations is a prerequisite for understanding protein interaction networks in systems biology. Today, protein quantification is based either on mass spectrometry, which requires large cell numbers and sophisticated measurement protocols, or on quantitative Western blotting, which requires the expression and purification of a recombinant protein as a reference. Here, we present a method that uses a transiently expressed fluorescent fusion protein of the protein-of-interest as an easily accessible reference in small volumes of crude cell lysates. The concentration of the fusion protein is determined by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, and this concentration is used to calibrate the intensity of bands on a Western blot. We applied this method to address cellular protein homeostasis by determining the concentrations of the plasma membrane-located transmembrane scaffolding protein LAT and soluble signaling proteins in naïve T cells and transformed T-cell lymphoma (Jurkat) cells (with the latter having nine times the volume of the former). Strikingly, the protein numbers of soluble proteins scaled with the cell volume, whereas that of the transmembrane protein LAT scaled with the membrane surface. This leads to significantly different stoichiometries of signaling proteins in transformed and naïve cells in concentration ranges that may translate directly into differences in complex formation. PMID:22261070

  11. Phagocytic mechanism of live neutrophilic granulocyte with green fluorescent protein gene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Shaoqun; Chen, Weiguo; Zhou, Wei; Luo, Qingming; Zhang, Zhi

    1999-09-01

    The whole process of neutrophilic granulocyte phagocytosis of E.Coli BL21-expressed green fluorescent protein gene was recorded with CCD coupled fluorescence microscopy in a real-time. This process contains of three stages: adhesion, ingestion, and exocytosis. The properties of each stages of phagocytosis were analyzed. The method opened new perspective in continuously observing the specific and non-specific immunity mechanism on alive cell.

  12. Protein design in systems metabolic engineering for industrial strain development.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhen; Zeng, An-Ping

    2013-05-01

    Accelerating the process of industrial bacterial host strain development, aimed at increasing productivity, generating new bio-products or utilizing alternative feedstocks, requires the integration of complementary approaches to manipulate cellular metabolism and regulatory networks. Systems metabolic engineering extends the concept of classical metabolic engineering to the systems level by incorporating the techniques used in systems biology and synthetic biology, and offers a framework for the development of the next generation of industrial strains. As one of the most useful tools of systems metabolic engineering, protein design allows us to design and optimize cellular metabolism at a molecular level. Here, we review the current strategies of protein design for engineering cellular synthetic pathways, metabolic control systems and signaling pathways, and highlight the challenges of this subfield within the context of systems metabolic engineering.

  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. Locating the nucleation sites for protein encapsulated gold nanoclusters: a molecular dynamics and fluorescence study.

    PubMed

    Russell, B A; Kubiak-Ossowska, K; Mulheran, P A; Birch, D J S; Chen, Y

    2015-09-14

    Fluorescent gold nanoclusters encapsulated by proteins have attracted considerable attention in recent years for their unique properties as new fluorescence probes for biological sensing and imaging. However, fundamental questions, such as the nucleation sites of gold nanoclusters within proteins and the fluorescence mechanism remain unsolved. Here we present a study of the location of gold nanoclusters within bovine serum albumin (BSA) combining both fully atomistic molecular dynamic (MD) simulations and fluorescence spectroscopic studies. The MD simulations show gold clusters growing close to a number of cysteine sites across all three domains of BSA, although just two major sites in domains IIB and IA were found to accommodate large clusters comprising more than 12 atoms. The dependence of the fluorescence on pH is found to be compatible with possible nucleation sites in domains IIB and IA. Furthermore, the energy transfer between tryptophan and gold nanoclusters reveals a separation of 29.7 Å, further indicating that gold nanoclusters were most likely located in the major nucleation site in domain IIB. The disclosure of the precise location of the gold nanoclusters and their surrounding amino acid residues should help better understanding of their fluorescence mechanism and aid their optimization as fluorescent nanoprobes.

  15. Correlative fluorescence and electron microscopy of quantum dot labeled proteins on whole cells in liquid.

    PubMed

    Peckys, Diana B; Dukes, Madeline J; de Jonge, Niels

    2014-01-01

    Correlative fluorescence microscopy and scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) of cells fully immersed in liquid is a new methodology with many application areas. Proteins, in live cells immobilized on microchips, are labeled with fluorescent quantum dot (QD) nanoparticles. In this protocol, the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is labeled. The cells are fixed after a selected labeling time, for example, 5 min as needed to form EGFR dimers. The microchip with cells is then imaged with fluorescence microscopy. Thereafter, the microchip with the labeled cells and one with a spacer are assembled in a special microfluidic device and imaged with STEM.

  16. A fast- and positively photoswitchable fluorescent protein for ultralow-laser-power RESOLFT nanoscopy.

    PubMed

    Tiwari, Dhermendra K; Arai, Yoshiyuki; Yamanaka, Masahito; Matsuda, Tomoki; Agetsuma, Masakazu; Nakano, Masahiro; Fujita, Katsumasa; Nagai, Takeharu

    2015-06-01

    Fluorescence nanoscopy has revolutionized our ability to visualize biological structures not resolvable by conventional microscopy. However, photodamage induced by intense light exposure has limited its use in live specimens. Here we describe Kohinoor, a fast-switching, positively photoswitchable fluorescent protein, and show that it has high photostability over many switching repeats. With Kohinoor, we achieved super-resolution imaging of live HeLa cells using biocompatible, ultralow laser intensity (0.004 J/cm(2)) in reversible saturable optical fluorescence transition (RESOLFT) nanoscopy.

  17. Localization of proteins and organelles using fluorescence microscopy.

    PubMed

    Farre, Jean-Claude; Shirahama-Noda, Kanae; Zhang, Lan; Booher, Keith; Subramani, Suresh

    2007-01-01

    This chapter describes the different methods used for localization of proteins and organelles in Pichia pastoris. A series of plasmids and a modified immunofluorescence protocol for localization and co-localization of proteins and organelles are described. Also included are protocols for the labeling of different subcellular organelles with vital stains.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Engineered Protein Nano-Compartments for Targeted Enzyme Localization

    PubMed Central

    Choudhary, Swati; Quin, Maureen B.; Sanders, Mark A.; Johnson, Ethan T.; Schmidt-Dannert, Claudia

    2012-01-01

    Compartmentalized co-localization of enzymes and their substrates represents an attractive approach for multi-enzymatic synthesis in engineered cells and biocatalysis. Sequestration of enzymes and substrates would greatly increase reaction efficiency while also protecting engineered host cells from potentially toxic reaction intermediates. Several bacteria form protein-based polyhedral microcompartments which sequester functionally related enzymes and regulate their access to substrates and other small metabolites. Such bacterial microcompartments may be engineered into protein-based nano-bioreactors, provided that they can be assembled in a non-native host cell, and that heterologous enzymes and substrates can be targeted into the engineered compartments. Here, we report that recombinant expression of Salmonella enterica ethanolamine utilization (eut) bacterial microcompartment shell proteins in E. coli results in the formation of polyhedral protein shells. Purified recombinant shells are morphologically similar to the native Eut microcompartments purified from S. enterica. Surprisingly, recombinant expression of only one of the shell proteins (EutS) is sufficient and necessary for creating properly delimited compartments. Co-expression with EutS also facilitates the encapsulation of EGFP fused with a putative Eut shell-targeting signal sequence. We also demonstrate the functional localization of a heterologous enzyme (β-galactosidase) targeted to the recombinant shells. Together our results provide proof-of-concept for the engineering of protein nano-compartments for biosynthesis and biocatalysis. PMID:22428024

  1. Spectroscopic detection of fluorescent protein marker gene activity in genetically modified plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liew, O. W.; Chong, Jenny P. C.; Asundi, Anand K.

    2005-04-01

    This work focuses on developing a portable fibre optic fluorescence analyser for rapid identification of genetically modified plants tagged with a fluorescent marker gene. Independent transgenic tobacco plant lines expressing the enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP) gene were regenerated following Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer. Molecular characterisation of these plant lines was carried out at the DNA level by PCR screening to confirm their transgenic status. Conventional transgene expression analysis was then carried out at the RNA level by RT-PCR and at the protein level by Western blotting using anti-GFP rabbit antiserum. The amount of plant-expressed EGFP on a Western blot was quantified against known amounts of purified EGFP by scanning densitometry. The expression level of EGFP in transformed plants was found to range from 0.1 - 0.6% of total extractable protein. A comparison between conventional western analysis of transformants and direct spectroscopic quantification using the fibre optic fluorescence analyser was made. The results showed that spectroscopic measurements of fluorescence emission from strong EGFP expressors correlated positively with Western blot data. However, the fluorescence analyser was also able to identify weakly expressing plant transformants below the detection limit of colorimetric Western blotting.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Protein engineering with biosynthesized libraries from Bordetella bronchiseptica bacteriophage.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Tom Z; Overstreet, Cathie M; Moody, Issa S; Weiss, Gregory A

    2013-01-01

    Phage display offers a powerful approach to engineer protein affinity. A naturally occurring analog to phage display, the Bordetella bronchiseptica bacteriophage (BP) employs a highly variable protein termed the major tropism determinant (Mtd) to recognize its dynamic host. Propagation of BP provides a self-made phage library (SMPL) with vast numbers of phage particles, each displaying a single Mtd variant. We report applying the diversity of the BP-SMPL to access a tyrosine-rich library of Mtd variants. Expression of the SMPL-engineered Mtd variant as a GST-bound fusion protein demonstrated specific binding to the target T4 lysozyme with dissociation constants in the sub-micromolar range. The results guide future experiments with SMPLs applied to protein engineering.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Fluorescence Anisotropy Reveals Order and Disorder of Protein Domains in the Nuclear Pore Complex

    PubMed Central

    Mattheyses, Alexa L.; Kampmann, Martin; Atkinson, Claire E.; Simon, Sanford M.

    2010-01-01

    We present a new approach for studying individual protein domains within the nuclear pore complex (NPC) using fluorescence polarization microscopy. The NPC is a large macromolecular complex, the size and complexity of which presents experimental challenges. Using fluorescence anisotropy and exploiting the symmetry of the NPC and its organization in the nuclear envelope, we have resolved order and disorder of individual protein domains. Fluorescently tagging specific domains of individual nucleoporins revealed both rigid and flexible domains: the tips of the FG domains are disordered, whereas the NPC-anchored domains are ordered. Our technique allows the collection of structural information in vivo, providing the ability to probe the organization of protein domains within the NPC. This has particular relevance for the FG domain nucleoporins, which are crucial for nucleocytoplasmic transport. PMID:20858414

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Use of mCherryOpt Fluorescent Protein in Clostridium difficile.

    PubMed

    Ransom, Eric M; Weiss, David S; Ellermeier, Craig D

    2016-01-01

    Here we describe protocols for using the red fluorescent protein mCherryOpt in Clostridium difficile. The protocols can be readily adapted to similar fluorescent proteins (FPs), such as green fluorescent protein (GFP) and cyan fluorescent protein (CFP). There are three critical considerations for using FPs in C. difficile. (1) Choosing the right color: Blue and (especially) red are preferred because C. difficile exhibits considerable yellow-green autofluorescence. (2) Codon optimization: Most FP genes in general circulation have a GC content of ~60 %, so they are not well expressed in low-GC bacteria. (3) Fixing anaerobically grown cells prior to exposure to O2: The FPs under consideration here are non-fluorescent when produced anaerobically because O2 is required to introduce double bonds into the chromophore. Fixation prevents C. difficile cells from becoming degraded during the several hours required for chromophore maturation after cells are exposed to air. Fixation can probably be omitted for studies in which maintaining cellular architecture is not important, such as using mCherryOpt to monitor gene expression. PMID:27507333

  14. Responses of Jatropha curcas seedlings to cold stress: photosynthesis-related proteins and chlorophyll fluorescence characteristics.

    PubMed

    Liang, Yu; Chen, Hui; Tang, Ming-Juan; Yang, Ping-Fang; Shen, Shi-Hua

    2007-11-01

    Photosynthesis-related proteins and PSII functions of Jatropha curcas seedlings under cold stress were studied using proteomic and chlorophyll fluorescence approaches. The results of chlorophyll fluorescence measurement indicated that electron transport flux per reaction center (ET(o)/RC) and performance index (PI(ABS)) were relatively sensitive to low temperature, especially at early stage of cold stress. The increase in O-J phase and decrease in J-I phase of chlorophyll fluorescence transient indicated a protection mechanism of J. curcas to photoinhibition at early stage of cold stress. Eight photosynthesis-related proteins significantly changed during cold stress were identified using liquid chromatography MS/MS. Results of correlation analyses between photosynthesis-related proteins and chlorophyll fluorescence parameters indicated that (1) ATP synthase and Rieske FeS protein were significantly correlated with electron transport of reaction center in PSII; (2) precursor for 33-kDa protein was positively correlated with fluorescence quenching of the O-J and J-I phases and PI(ABS) during cold stress, which implies that it might be related to multiple process in PSII; (3) contrary correlations were found between F(J) - F(o) and two enzymes in the Calvin cycle, and the relations between these proteins and PSII function were unclear. The combined study using proteomic approaches and chlorophyll fluorescence measurements indicated that the early-stage (0-12 h) acclimation of PSII and the late-stage (after 24 h) H(2)O(2) scavenging might be involved in the cold response mechanisms of J. curcas seedlings.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. Knockin mice expressing fluorescent delta-opioid receptors uncover G protein-coupled receptor dynamics in vivo.

    PubMed

    Scherrer, Grégory; Tryoen-Tóth, Petra; Filliol, Dominique; Matifas, Audrey; Laustriat, Delphine; Cao, Yu Q; Basbaum, Allan I; Dierich, Andrée; Vonesh, Jean-Luc; Gavériaux-Ruff, Claire; Kieffer, Brigitte L

    2006-06-20

    The combination of fluorescent genetically encoded proteins with mouse engineering provides a fascinating means to study dynamic biological processes in mammals. At present, green fluorescent protein (GFP) mice were mainly developed to study gene expression patterns or cell morphology and migration. Here we used enhanced GFP (EGFP) to achieve functional imaging of a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) in vivo. We created mice where the delta-opioid receptor (DOR) is replaced by an active DOR-EGFP fusion. Confocal imaging revealed detailed receptor neuroanatomy throughout the nervous system of knock-in mice. Real-time imaging in primary neurons allowed dynamic visualization of drug-induced receptor trafficking. In DOR-EGFP animals, drug treatment triggered receptor endocytosis that correlated with the behavioral response. Mice with internalized receptors were insensitive to subsequent agonist administration, providing evidence that receptor sequestration limits drug efficacy in vivo. Direct receptor visualization in mice is a unique approach to receptor biology and drug design. PMID:16766653

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Exciplex fluorescence visualization systems for pre-combustion diagnosis of an automotive gasoline engine

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, J.U.; Golding, B.; Schock, H.J.; Nocera, D.G.; Keller, P.

    1996-09-01

    This paper reports the development of vapor/liquid visualization systems based on an exciplex (excited state complex) formed between dimethyl or diethyl-substituted aniline and trimethyl-substituted naphthalenes. Quantum yields of individual monomers were measured and the exciplex emission spectra as well as fluorescence quenching mechanisms were analyzed. Among the many systems and formulations investigated in this study, an exciplex consisting of 7% 1,4,6-trimethylnaphthalene (TMN) and 5% N,N-dimethylaniline (DMA) in 88% isooctane was found to be the best system for the laser-induced exciplex fluorescence (LIEF) technique, which is used to observe mixture formation in diesel or spark ignition (SI) engines. Observation of spectrally separated fluorescence from monomer in the gas phase and from exciplex in the gasoline fuel requires that the exciplex forming dopants have boiling points within the distillation range of gasoline (20 to 215 C). The systems reported here are expected to be coevaporative with isooctane solvent and thus they should be effective in tracking the vaporization of automotive gasoline fuel.

  2. A novel pair of split venus fragments to detect protein-protein interactions by in vitro and in vivo bimolecular fluorescence complementation assays.

    PubMed

    Ohashi, Kazumasa; Mizuno, Kensaku

    2014-01-01

    Protein-protein interactions are critical components of almost every cellular process. The bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) method has been used to detect protein-protein interactions in both living cells and cell-free systems. The BiFC method is based on the principle that a fluorescent protein is reassembled from its two complementary non-fluorescent fragments when an interaction occurs between two proteins, each one fused to each fragment. In vivo and in vitro BiFC assays, which use a new pair of split Venus fragments composed of VN210 (amino acids 1-210) and VC210 (amino acids 210-238), are useful tools to detect and quantify various protein-protein interactions (including the cofilin-actin and Ras-Raf interactions) with high specificity and low background fluorescence. Moreover, these assays can be applied to screen small-molecule inhibitors of protein-protein interactions.

  3. 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.

  4. Maintenance of native-like protein dynamics may not be required for engineering functional proteins.

    PubMed

    Gobeil, Sophie M C; Clouthier, Christopher M; Park, Jaeok; Gagné, Donald; Berghuis, Albert M; Doucet, Nicolas; Pelletier, Joelle N

    2014-10-23

    Proteins are dynamic systems, and understanding dynamics is critical for fully understanding protein function. Therefore, the question of whether laboratory engineering has an impact on protein dynamics is of general interest. Here, we demonstrate that two homologous, naturally evolved enzymes with high degrees of structural and functional conservation also exhibit conserved dynamics. Their similar set of slow timescale dynamics is highly restricted, consistent with evolutionary conservation of a functionally important feature. However, we also show that dynamics of a laboratory-engineered chimeric enzyme obtained by recombination of the two homologs exhibits striking difference on the millisecond timescale, despite function and high-resolution crystal structure (1.05 Å) being conserved. The laboratory-engineered chimera is thus functionally tolerant to modified dynamics on the timescale of catalytic turnover. Tolerance to dynamic variation implies that maintenance of native-like protein dynamics may not be required when engineering functional proteins.

  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. The profiles of red fluorescent proteins with antinucleopolyhedrovirus activity in races of the silkworm Bombyx mori.

    PubMed

    Sunagar, Santosh G; Savanurmath, Chandrashekhar J; Hinchigeri, Shivayogeppa B

    2011-12-01

    Partially purified red fluorescent proteins (RFPs) secured from the gut juice of 5th-instar multivoltine and bivoltine silkworm races were observed as several bands in electrophoretograms and chromatographic eluates. Interestingly, different races of silkworms had varying numbers of fluorescent protein bands: 11 in Pure Mysore (resistant), 11 in Nistari (resistant), 4 in CSR(2) (moderately susceptible) and 1 in NB(4)D(2) (highly susceptible). Bioassay experiments indicated that the fluorescent bands had antinucleopolyhedrovirus (antiNPV) activity. The molar extinction coefficients and fluorescence quantum yields of all RFPs were estimated. The purified tetrapyrroles were characterized by UV-visible absorption and fluorescence spectral analyses. All tetrapyrrole moieties associated with RFPs were found to be different and characteristic of the fluorescent bands. The resulting qualitative and quantitative differences among the individual RFPs from various races of silkworm were related to the susceptibilities of the silkworms to the viral disease. Moreover, light was found to be essential for the synthesis of RFPs, and, therefore, the role of light in the synthesis of RFPs was evaluated. Thus, this work may elucidate the process of RFP synthesis in silkworm, which may be used as a biomarker to measure the degree of susceptibility of silkworm races to NPV. Therefore, t