National Institute for Physiological Sciences

Imaging the activity of signaling molecules in deep tissue using "non-fluorescent" fluorescent proteins

In this project we will develop dark fluorescent proteins for deep-tissue imaging. Since our fluorescent proteins have high absorbance of red wavelength (high permeability in tissue), it will enable deep tissue imaging. The application of dark fluorescent protein as an acceptor for 2-photon FLIM-FRET will improve signal-to-noise ratio and facilitate multi-color FLIM-FRET imaging in deep tissue such as brain slice. Furthermore, we will apply dark fluorescent proteins to mice in vivo and carries out dual observation of intracellular signaling proteins and Ca2+, and try to understand the mechanisms of neuronal circuit development during learning and memory formation.