Quantification of Intracellular Citrate Concentrations with Genetically Encoded Biosensors

Methods Mol Biol. 2023:2564:247-258. doi: 10.1007/978-1-0716-2667-2_12.


Citrate is a central intracellular metabolite with roles in a variety of normal and aberrant biological processes. The methods for quantifying citrate concentration in cells can enable the study of the molecular mechanisms of citrate-related biological processes and diseases. Compared to existing analytical methods such as enzymatic assays and mass spectrometry, genetically encoded biosensors based on fluorescent proteins (FPs) offer the advantage of noninvasively tracking intracellular ion and small molecule dynamics with high spatial-temporal resolution. These biosensors are less toxic than chemosensors and can be targeted to specific organelles for subcellular imaging. Here we present a protocol for quantification of cytosolic and mitochondrial citrate in mammalian cells with recently reported genetically encoded biosensors for citrate.

Keywords: Biosensor; Citrate; Fluorescent protein; Mammalian cell; Microscopy.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biosensing Techniques* / methods
  • Citrates
  • Citric Acid*
  • Mammals
  • Proteins


  • Citrates
  • Proteins
  • Citric Acid