This protocol describes a method to image individual mRNA molecules in situ. About 50 oligonucleotides complementary to different regions of a target mRNA species are used simultaneously. Each probe is labeled with a single fluorescent moiety. When these probes bind to their target, each mRNA molecule becomes so intensely fluorescent that it can be seen as a fine fluorescent spot. Several different mRNA species can be detected in multiplex imaging using differently colored probe sets for each species. An automated image-processing program is used to count the number of mRNA molecules of each species that are expressed in each cell, thus yielding single-cell gene expression profiles.