Heterologous expression of G-protein-coupled receptors

Trends Biotechnol. 1996 Nov;14(11):426-30. doi: 10.1016/0167-7799(96)10059-7.


G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are integral membrane proteins of great pharmacological importance owing to their central role in the regulation of cellular responses to external stimuli. Heterologous expression systems have been used to explore ligand binding, G protein and effector coupling, and structural aspects of the receptors. GPCRs can be expressed in a functional form in all expression systems, but with varying degrees of success because of differences in receptor and host cell characteristics. This article will discuss aspects related to the choice and suitability of expression systems for the intended analysis of GPCR properties.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics*
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism


  • Membrane Proteins
  • GTP-Binding Proteins