A guide to choosing fluorescent proteins

Nat Methods. 2005 Dec;2(12):905-9. doi: 10.1038/nmeth819.


The recent explosion in the diversity of available fluorescent proteins (FPs) promises a wide variety of new tools for biological imaging. With no unified standard for assessing these tools, however, a researcher is faced with difficult questions. Which FPs are best for general use? Which are the brightest? What additional factors determine which are best for a given experiment? Although in many cases, a trial-and-error approach may still be necessary in determining the answers to these questions, a unified characterization of the best available FPs provides a useful guide in narrowing down the options.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Fluorescent Dyes / chemistry*
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Humans
  • Luminescent Proteins / chemistry*
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence / methods


  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Luminescent Proteins