The Department of Biomedicine

BBB Seminar: Michael Z. Lin

Teaching an old dog lots of new tricks: Extending fluorescent protein uses in neuroscience and stem cell biology

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Michael Z. Lin
Departments of Pediatrics and Bioengineering, Stanford University, CA, USA

Fluorescent proteins are commonplace as reporters of gene expression and protein localization, but their potential applications have only just begun to be explored. We will present results of our research on three types of new applications for fluorescent proteins. We will show how fluorescent proteins can be used to follow fates of newly synthesized proteins in neurons in models of synaptic plasticity. We will describe how brighter fluorescent proteins extend the capabilities of FRET reporters to aid sensing of fast events in neurons. Finally we will demonstrate the ability of red-shifted fluorescent proteins to visualize stem cell differentiation in mice.

Host: Clive R. Bramham, Department of Biomedicine