Fluorescent protein marker lines in maize: generation and applications

Int J Dev Biol. 2013;57(6-8):535-43. doi: 10.1387/ijdb.130240qw.


Fluorescent proteins (FP) have significantly impacted the way that we study plants in the past two decades. In the post-genomics era, these FP tools are in higher demand by plant scientists for studying the dynamics of protein localization, function, and interactions, and to translate sequence information to biological knowledge that can benefit humans. Although FP tools have been widely used in the model plant Arabidopsis, few FP resources have been developed for maize, one of the most important food crops worldwide, and an ideal species for genetic and developmental biology research. In an effort to provide the maize and cereals research communities with a comprehensive set of FP resources for different purposes of study, we generated more than 100 stable transformed maize FP marker lines, which mark most compartments in maize cells with different FPs. Additionally, we are generating driver and reporter lines, based on the principle of the pOp-LhG4 transactivation system, allowing specific expression or mis-expression of any gene of interest to precisely study protein functions. These marker lines can be used not only for static protein localization studies, but will be useful for studying protein dynamics and interactions using kinetic microscopy methods, such as fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP), fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS), and fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET).

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis / genetics
  • Cell Separation
  • Developmental Biology
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching
  • Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer
  • Genes, Plant
  • Genes, Reporter
  • Genetic Markers
  • Genetic Techniques
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / metabolism*
  • Luminescent Proteins / genetics
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Plants, Genetically Modified*
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Protein Interaction Mapping
  • Seeds
  • Spectrometry, Fluorescence
  • Transcriptional Activation
  • Zea mays / genetics*
  • Zea mays / metabolism


  • Genetic Markers
  • Luminescent Proteins
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins