Reversible Photoregulation of Gene Expression and Translation

Methods Mol Biol. 2016;1408:55-66. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-3512-3_4.


Several methods for controlling gene expression by light illumination have been reported. Most of these methods control transcription by regulating the interaction between DNA and transcription factors. The use of a photolabile protecting compound (cage compound) is another promising approach for controlling gene expression, although typically in an irreversible manner. We here describe a new approach for reversibly controlling translation using a photoresponsive 8-styryl cap (8ST-cap) that can be reversibly isomerized by illumination with light of a specific wavelength.

Keywords: Cap structure; Photoisomerization; Translation; mRNA.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • Isomerism
  • Light*
  • Optogenetics / methods*
  • Protein Biosynthesis*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics*
  • Transfection / methods


  • RNA, Messenger