News of the WeekCell Biology

Color-Changing Protein Times Gene Activity

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Science  24 Nov 2000:
Vol. 290, Issue 5496, pp. 1478-1479
DOI: 10.1126/science.290.5496.1478

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For years, researchers trying to capture the bustling activity of genes in living cells have mostly had to make do with snapshots, which clearly fell short of the mark. But now their frustration may be over. On page 1585, a team describes a new fluorescent protein that turns bright green when it is first made, then changes to red over several hours--providing the ability to witness how genes alter their activities over time.