A genetically encoded sensor for measuring serotonin dynamics

Nat Neurosci. 2021 May;24(5):746-752. doi: 10.1038/s41593-021-00823-7. Epub 2021 Apr 5.


Serotonin (5-HT) is a phylogenetically conserved monoamine neurotransmitter modulating important processes in the brain. To directly visualize the release of 5-HT, we developed a genetically encoded G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR)-activation-based 5-HT (GRAB5-HT) sensor with high sensitivity, high selectivity, subsecond kinetics and subcellular resolution. GRAB5-HT detects 5-HT release in multiple physiological and pathological conditions in both flies and mice and provides new insights into the dynamics and mechanisms of 5-HT signaling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Female
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism*
  • Serotonergic Neurons / metabolism*
  • Serotonin / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction / physiology


  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
  • Serotonin