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Fluorescent markers and indicators

In recent years, fluorescent proteins emitting at different wavelengths have been discovered, manipulated, optimized and are now commonly used in imaging labs. They can be classified into different categories and using different systems and some of their characteristics can be seen as valuable or not, depending on the investigator.

You will find below a link to an excel file presenting the various DNA encoded fluorescent markers and indicators available through the Molecular Tools Platform. As this field evolves extremely fast, we are trying to make sure that newly developed tools become available to you as soon as possible.

Download the list of Fluorophores available from the Molecular Tools Platform.

DNA constructs

The Molecular Tools Platform offers a DNA construct building service. Below is a list of some of the sequences that can be included in your construct and their use/function.

Tools used in the engineering of DNA constructs

IRES: Internal Ribosomal Entry Site. A nucleotide sequence that allows for translation initiation in the middle of a messenger RNA (mRNA) sequence. Often used in front of a fluorescent marker to trace the efficiency of transfection of a certain DNA construct without the need for making a fusion molecule.

TTC: Fragment C of the Tetanus Toxin, corresponds to the 451 amino acids at the C-terminus of the protein. This non-toxic fragment of the TT is transported trans-synaptically (retrograde). It will drive the transport of most proteins fused to it and can thus be used to trace neuronal circuits.

WGA: Plant lectin (wheat germ agglutinin) transported trans-synaptically, also used as a circuitry tracer. Contrary to TTC, WGA can be transferred via anterograde and retrograde transport.

CRE: Cre recombinase (Cre), is a Type I topoisomerase from P1 bacteriophage that catalyzes site-specific recombination of DNA between loxP sites. Cre is used as a tool to modify genes and chromosomes. In this approach the Cre recombinase is used to delete a segment of DNA flanked by LoxP sites (aka ‘floxed’) in an experimental animal or a fragment of DNA of interest. Cre can be delivered to the cell nucleus as a purified protein or as part of a DNA construct that will lead to its production inside the cell.

WPRE: Woodchuck hepatitis post-transcriptional regulatory element. Segment of DNA that is thought to increase the expression level of genes through an improved nucleotransport of RNA. The effect of a WPRE are thought to be gene and promoter specific but should generally not lead to decreased expression levels of DNA.

MYC/His/HA tags: Small protein fragments that can be fused to a potein of interest through DNA engineering and used in the purification or detection of the resulting fusion protein. Specific antibodies are available for common tags.

MSDS for viral vectors

Here are Material Data Safety Sheets for the viral vectors from Université Laval. Make sure you conform to all your local safety regulations.