Unit

UNIT 21.3 Visualization of Protein Interactions in Living Cells Using Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Analysis

  1. Chang-Deng Hu,
  2. Asya V. Grinberg,
  3. Tom K. Kerppola

Published Online: 1 JAN 2006

DOI: 10.1002/0471143030.cb2103s29

Current Protocols in Cell Biology

Current Protocols in Cell Biology

How to Cite

Hu, C.-D., Grinberg, A. V. and Kerppola, T. K. 2006. Visualization of Protein Interactions in Living Cells Using Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation (BiFC) Analysis. Current Protocols in Cell Biology. 29:21.3:21.3.1–21.3.21.

Author Information

  1. Howard Hughes Medical Institute and University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 JAN 2006
  2. Published Print: DEC 2005

Abstract

Protein interactions integrate stimuli from different signaling pathways and developmental programs. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) analysis has been developed for visualization of protein interactions in living cells. This approach is based on complementation between two fragments of a fluorescent protein when they are brought together by an interaction between proteins fused to the fragments, and it enables visualization of the subcellular locations of protein interactions in the normal cellular environment. It can be used for the analysis of many protein interactions and does not require information about the structures of the interaction partners. A multicolor BiFC approach has been developed for simultaneous visualization of interactions with multiple alternative partners in the same cell, based on complementation between fragments of engineered fluorescent proteins that produce bimolecular fluorescent complexes with distinct spectral characteristics. This enables comparison of subcellular distributions of different protein complexes in the same cell and allows analysis of competition between mutually exclusive interaction partners.