Pippi (phosphatidyl inositol phosphate indicator) is a biosensor based on the principle of FRET (Förster resonance energy transfer), which consists of a pair of fluorescent proteins, CFP (cyan fluorescent protein) and YFP (yellow fluorescent protein), the PH domain sandwiched between them, and K-Ras C-terminal sequence for plasma membrane localization. Due to marked cross-excitation of YFP with the conditions used to excite CFP, initial FRET images obtained by TPE (two-photon excitation) microscopy suffered from low signal-to-noise ratio, hampering the observation of lipids in three-dimensional structures. To solve this problem, YFP and CFP in the original Pippi-PI(3,4)P2 was replaced by sREACh (super resonance energy accepting chromoprotein) and mTFP1 (monomeric teal fluorescent protein), respectively. The biosensor was also fused with an internal control protein, mKeima, where Keima/mTFP1 indicates the FRET efficiency, and indeed epidermal growth factor stimulation increased Keima/mTFP1 in HeLa cells. This biosensor successfully showed PI(3,4)P2 accumulation to the lateral membrane in the MDCK cyst cultured in a three-dimensional environment. Furthermore, other FRET-based biosensors for PIP3 distribution and for tyrosine kinase activity were developed based on this method, suggesting its broad application for visualizing signal transduction events with TPE microscopy.
- Förster resonance energy transfer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology