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Reference Icon Redbook Fluorescent Protein Guide: Biosensors


Background

Genetically encoded fluorescent biosensors are fluorescent proteins attached to an additional protein sequence that make it sensitive to small biomolecules or other physiological intracellular processes. Fluorescent biosensors are introduced into cells, tissues or organisms to allow for detection by fluorescence microscopy as a difference in FRET efficiency, translocation of the fluorescent protein or modulation of the fluorescent properties of a single fluorescent protein. Many biosensors allow for long-term imaging and can be designed to specifically target cellular compartments or organelles. Another advantage of biosensors is that they permit investigation of a signaling pathway or measurement of a biomolecule while largely preserving spatial and temporal cellular processes.

The following plasmids encode fluorescent biosensors that were designed to measure specific small biomolecules or the activity of specific genes via circularly permuted fluorescent protein (cpFP) and/or FRET-based fluorescent protein constructs. Custom biosensors can also be constructed using the cpFRET kit from the Pertz laboratory.

Small Molecule Biosensors

Category Purpose Principal Investigator Plasmids
Arabinose Monitor intracellular levels of arabinose Wolf Frommer See Plasmid
ATP:ADP Monitor the ATP:ADP ratio during live-cell imaging Gary Yellen See Plasmids
Calcium Large palette of genetically encoded Ca2+ indicators (GECOs) Robert Campbell See Plasmids
Calcium tdTomato-mAmetrine1.2 Ca2+ sensors Robert Campbell See Plasmids
Calcium Calcium indicator based on C-terminal domain of Opsanus troponin C Oliver Griesbeck See Plasmids
Calcium High-performing calcium indicator based on C-terminal domain of troponin C Oliver Griesbeck See Plasmids
Calcium Calcium indicator for neural activity imaging (GCaMP5G) Loren Looger & Douglas Kim See Plasmids
Calcium Updated calcium sensors for imaging neural activity (GCaMP6) Douglas Kim See Plasmids
Glucose Monitor glucose levels and transport Wolf Frommer See Plasmids
Glutamate Visualize glutamate neurotransmission Loren Looger See Plasmids
Glutamate Monitor glutamate transport and metabolism Wolf Frommer See Plasmids
Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) Measure changes in intracellular hydrogen peroxide concentration Vsevolod Belousov See Plasmids
Lactate Measure lactate concentration and lactate fluxes Luis Felipe Barros See Plasmids
Magnesium Fluorescent Mg2+ sensor Maarten Merkx See Plasmids
Maltose Monitor maltose levels and metabolism Wolf Frommer For Bacteria
For Plants
NADH-NAD+ Fluorescent biosensor of the cytosolic NADH-NAD+ redox state Vsevolod Belousov See Plasmids
NADH-NAD+ Fluorescent biosensor of the cytosolic NADH-NAD+ redox state Gary Yellen See Plasmids
pH Image intracellular pH in live cells Gary Yellen See Plasmids
pH pH biosensor to detect concentrative nucleoside transport Robert Campbell See Plasmids
pH Fluorescent pH biosensor Vsevolod Belousov See Plasmids
pH Mitochondrial pH biosensor Nicolas Demaurex See Plasmids
Phosphate Monitor inorganic phosphate transport and metabolism Wolf Frommer See Plasmids
PIP3 & H2O2 Dual PIP3 and hydrogen peroxide biosensor Vsevolod Belousov See Plasmid
redox/ROS Redox-sensitive cytosolic protein sensor Ulrich Hammerling See Plasmids
Ribose Monitor ribose uptake and metabolism Wolf Frommer See Plasmids
Sucrose Monitor sucrose levels and flux Wolf Frommer See Plasmids
Tryptophan Visualize intracellular tryptophan levels and flux Wolf Frommer See Plasmids
Voltage Fast fluorescent protein voltage sensor Thomas Knopfel See Plasmids
Voltage Detection of single action / excitatory potentials in individual neurons and dendrites Vincent Pieribone See Plasmids
Voltage Ultrafast fluorescent voltage sensor for detection of single action potentials Michael Lin See Plasmids
Zinc Visualize free zinc levels in live cells Maarten Merkx See Plasmids
Zinc Robust red zinc sensors Maarten Merkx See Plasmids
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Gene-specific Biosensors

Gene Purpose Principal Investigator Plasmids
Actin Quantify actin polymerization with mEGFP-actin and sREACh-actin monomers Ryohei Yasuda See Plasmids
Arf6 Visualize Arf6 activation in live cells Martin Schwartz See Plasmids
Aurora B Sensor for Aurora B substrate phosphorylation Daniel Gerlich See Plasmids
CaMKIIa Measure CaMKII activation in dendritic spines Ryohei Yasuda See Plasmids
Caspase 3, 8/10 Reporter proteins for caspase activity Peter Sorger See Plasmids
Caspase 3 Reporter protein for caspase 3 activity Robert Campbell See Plasmid
Caspase 3 Reporter protein for caspase 3 activity Vladislav Verkhusha See Plasmid
Cdt NIR reporter for cell cycle progression Vladislav Verkhusha See Plasmid
CyclinB-Cdk1 CyclinB1-Cdk1 kinase activity Jonathon Pines See Plasmids
GAT1 Detect assembly and oligomerization of GABA transporter (GAT1) Henry Lester See Plasmid
Geminin NIR reporter for cell cycle progression Vladislav Verkhusha See Plasmid
IκBα NIR reporter for canonical activation of NF-κB Vladislav Verkhusha See Plasmid
Ras GTPase Sensors for the activation of Ras GTPase with slow (FRas) and fast (FRas-F) kinetics Karel Svoboda See Plasmids
Rho GTPases Biosensors for characterizing dynamics of Rho family GTPases in living cells Klaus Hahn See Plasmids
RhoA Visualize RhoA activity during cell migration Klaus Hahn See Plasmids
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