Targeting and tracing antigens in live cells with fluorescent nanobodies

Nat Methods. 2006 Nov;3(11):887-9. doi: 10.1038/nmeth953.


We fused the epitope-recognizing fragment of heavy-chain antibodies from Camelidae sp. with fluorescent proteins to generate fluorescent, antigen-binding nanobodies (chromobodies) that can be expressed in living cells. We demonstrate that chromobodies can recognize and trace antigens in different subcellular compartments throughout S phase and mitosis. Chromobodies should enable new functional studies, as potentially any antigenic structure can be targeted and traced in living cells in this fashion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies / chemistry*
  • Antibodies / immunology
  • Antigen-Antibody Reactions
  • Antigens / chemistry*
  • Antigens / immunology
  • Camelus / immunology*
  • Epitopes
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / chemistry
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains / chemistry
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains / immunology
  • Mitosis
  • S Phase


  • Antibodies
  • Antigens
  • Epitopes
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins