GFP

General Information (more on wikipedia)

Species Molecular Weight (g/mol) Density (g/L) Radius (m) Reference
GFP MW D R [1]

The green fluorescent protein (GFP) is a protein, comprised of 238 amino acids (26,9 kDa), from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria that fluoresces green when exposed to blue light. GFP has a unique can-like shape consisting of an 11-strand β-barrel with a single alpha helical strand containing the chromophore running through the center. The inward facing sidechains of the barrel induce specific cyclization reactions that lead to chromophore formation, while the tightly packed barrel shell protects the chromophore from quenching by the surrounding microenvironment. Chromophore formation occurs in a series of discrete steps with distinct excitation and emission properties. This process is referred to as maturation. In cell and molecular biology, the GFP gene is frequently used as a reporter of expression. In modified forms it has been used to make biosensors, and many animals have been created that express GFP as a proof-of-concept that a gene can be expressed throughout a given organism. The availability of GFP and its derivatives has thoroughly redefined fluorescence microscopy and the way it is used in cell biology and other biological disciplines. While most small fluorescent molecules such as FITC (fluorescein isothiocyanate) are strongly phototoxic when used in live cells, fluorescent proteins such as GFP are usually much less harmful when illuminated in living cells. This has triggered the development of highly automated live cell fluorescence microscopy systems which can be used to observe cells over time expressing one or more proteins tagged with fluorescent proteins. Analysis of such time lapse movies has redefined the understanding of many biological processes including protein folding, protein transport, and RNA dynamics, which in the past had been studied using fixed (i.e. dead) material. Another powerful use of GFP is to express the protein in small sets of specific cells. This allows researchers to optically detect specific types of cells in vitro (in a dish), or even in vivo (in the living organism). The GFP gene can be introduced into organisms and maintained in their genome through breeding, or local injection with a viral vector can be used to introduce the gene. To date, many bacteria, yeast and other fungal cells, plant, fly, and mammalian cells have been created using GFP as a marker.

Diffusion of GFP in water

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Diffusion of GFP in cytoplasm

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Bibliography
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