Functional integrity of green fluorescent protein conjugated glycine receptor channels

Brigitte David-Watine, Spencer L. Shorte, Sergio Fucile, Didier De Saint Jan, Henri Korn, Piotr Bregestovski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The alpha subunit (αZ1) of the zebrafish glycine receptor (GlyR) has been N-terminus fused with green fluorescent protein (GFP). We found that both pharmacological and electrophysiological properties of this chimeric αZ1-GFP are indistinguishable from those of the wild-type receptor when expressed in Xenopus oocytes and cell lines. The apparent affinities of this receptor for agonists (glycine, taurine and GABA), and the antagonist (strychnine) are unchanged, and single channel kinetics are not altered. In the same expression systems, αZ1-GFP was visualized using fluorescence microscopy. Fluorescence was distributed anisotropically across cellular membranes. In addition to the Golgi apparatus and endoplasmic reticulum, its presence was also detected on the plasmalemma, localized at discrete hot-spots which were identified as sites of high membrane turnover. Overall, the preservation in αZ1-GFPs of the wild type receptor functional properties makes it a promising new tool for further in situ investigations of GlyR expression, distribution and function. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)785-792
Number of pages8
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 15 1999


  • GFP
  • Glycine
  • Imaging
  • Ion channel
  • Receptor sorting
  • Zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology


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