Real-time in vivo imaging of extracellular atp in the brain with a hybrid-type fluorescent sensor

Nami Kitajima, Kenji Takikawa, Hiroshi Sekiya, Kaname Satoh, Daisuke Asanuma, Hirokazu Sakamoto, Shodai Takahashi, Kenjiro Hanaoka, Yasuteru Urano, Shigeyuki Namiki, Masamitsu Iino, Kenzo Hirose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Adenosine 5’ triphosphate (ATP) is a ubiquitous extracellular signaling messenger. Here, we describe a method for in-vivo imaging of extracellular ATP with high spatiotemporal resolution. We prepared a comprehensive set of cysteine-substitution mutants of ATP-binding protein, Bacillus FoF1-ATP synthase e subunit, labeled with small-molecule fluorophores at the introduced cysteine residue. Screening revealed that the Cy3-labeled glutamine-105 mutant (Q105C-Cy3; designated ATPOS) shows a large fluorescence change in the presence of ATP, with submicromolar affinity, pH-independence, and high selectivity for ATP over ATP metabolites and other nucleotides. To enable in-vivo validation, we introduced BoNT/C-Hc for binding to neuronal plasma membrane and Alexa Fluor 488 for ratiometric measurement. The resulting ATPOS complex binds to neurons in cerebral cortex of living mice, and clearly visualized a concentrically propagating wave of extracellular ATP release in response to electrical stimulation. ATPOS should be useful to probe the extracellular ATP dynamics of diverse biological processes in vivo.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere57544
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jul
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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