Genetically encodable fluorescent biosensors for tracking signaling dynamics in living cells

Robert H. Newman, Matthew D. Fosbrink, Jin Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

253 Scopus citations


The molecular basis of several genetically targetable fluorescent tags amenable to live cell imaging is explored and development and use of fluorescent biosensors for studying dynamic signaling processes in living cells is discussed. The green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria are found to generate their chromophores autocatalytically by post-translational modification of their primary amino acid sequence. Studies have found that wild-type A. victoria GFP generates a highly fluorescent p-hydroxybenzylidene-5-imidizolinone (p-HBI) species from the tripeptide, Ser65-Tyr66- Gly67. Kamiyama and Chiba used a FRET-based activation reporter, termed A-probe.1, to measure the endogenous activation patterns of the Rho GTPase, Cdc42, during Drosophila embryogenesis. With continued advances in biosensor development, the quality and depth of information that can be incorporated into models of signal transduction will continue to increase, promoting a more quantitative understanding of the molecular mechanisms that influence signaling dynamics inside the cell.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3614-3666
Number of pages53
JournalChemical Reviews
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 11 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Genetically encodable fluorescent biosensors for tracking signaling dynamics in living cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this