A chimeric reporter gene allowing for clone selection and high-throughput screening of reporter cell lines expressing G-protein-coupled receptors

Anal Biochem. 2001 Jan 15;288(2):209-15. doi: 10.1006/abio.2000.4898.


Efficient screening of ligands interacting with G-protein-coupled receptors is central for modern drug development. Here, we describe an optimized reporter vector primarily intended for use in reporter cell lines expressing such receptors. The construct consists of a synthetic enhancer containing 9x TRE (12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate-responsive elements) fused to a minimal CMV (cytomegalovirus) promoter. Activation of the promoter construct leads to the expression of a chimeric reporter protein based on the genes for enhanced green fluorescent protein and Photinus luciferase. The chimeric protein allows for both clonal selection by fluorescence, which facilitates the selection of optimal reporter cell lines and high-throughput screening by luminescens. In designing the vector, increasing numbers of TRE motifs were tested in front of two different minimal promoters. The reporter gene was more strongly inducible with increasing numbers of TRE motifs. The constructs were tested in two cell lines, CHO and HeLa. The latter regulated reporter gene activity stronger in response to PMA (phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate) stimulation and were used to construct HF1 reporter cell lines. Model experiments were carried out on these reporter cells transfected with the human BLTR, human CCR5, or the rat alpha(1b) receptor. After maximal agonist stimulation reporter gene activity was increased 200-, 15-, and 50-fold, respectively.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Separation
  • Chimera*
  • Clone Cells*
  • DNA Primers
  • Flow Cytometry
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Genes, Reporter*
  • Humans
  • Plasmids
  • Rats
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism*


  • DNA Primers
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • GTP-Binding Proteins