GFP-like chromoproteins as a source of far-red fluorescent proteins.FEBS Lett 2001; 507(1):16-20FL
We have employed a new approach to generate novel fluorescent proteins (FPs) from red absorbing chromoproteins. An identical single amino acid substitution converted novel chromoproteins from the species Anthozoa (Heteractis crispa, Condylactis gigantea, and Goniopora tenuidens) into far-red FPs (emission lambda(max)=615-640 nm). Moreover, coupled site-directed and random mutagenesis of the chromoprotein from H. crispa resulted in a unique far-red FP (HcRed) that exhibited bright emission at 645 nm. A clear red shift in fluorescence of HcRed, compared to drFP583 (by more than 60 nm), makes it an ideal additional color for multi-color labeling. Importantly, HcRed is excitable by 600 nm dye laser, thus promoting new detection channels for multi-color flow cytometry applications. In addition, we generated a dimeric mutant with similar maturation and spectral properties to tetrameric HcRed.