We present a general, entirely PCR-based strategy to construct mRNAs coding for green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion proteins from a cDNA pool. We exemplify our approach for the chemokine receptor CXCR4. mRNA transfection of the PCR-generated fusion of CXCR4-GFP into K562 cells or primary mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) resulted in excellent viability (> 90%) with more than 90% of target cells expressing easily detectable CXCR4-GFP for > 72 h. The fusion protein was localized in the plasma membrane and was rapidly internalized upon incubation with the CXCR4 ligand stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1). Transwell migration experiments showed significantly increased migration of CXCR4-GFP mRNA-transfected MSCs toward a gradient of SDF-1, demonstrating that mRNA-mediated chemokine receptor overexpression allows for transient initiation of chemotaxis. The presented strategy to construct a PCR-based fluorescent fusion protein can be generally applied to other genes of interest to study their function by simple overexpression and easy detection in primary cells.