firefly luciferases


Summary: Luciferases from FIREFLIES, usually Photinus, that oxidizes FIREFLY LUCIFERIN to cause emission of PHOTONS.

Top Publications

  1. Auld D, Thorne N, Maguire W, Inglese J. Mechanism of PTC124 activity in cell-based luciferase assays of nonsense codon suppression. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009;106:3585-90 pubmed publisher
    ..Our results demonstrate the value of understanding potential interactions between reporter enzymes and chemical compounds and emphasize the importance of implementing the appropriate control assays before interpreting HTS results. ..
  2. Tannous B, Kim D, Fernandez J, Weissleder R, Breakefield X. Codon-optimized Gaussia luciferase cDNA for mammalian gene expression in culture and in vivo. Mol Ther. 2005;11:435-43 pubmed
  3. Moradi A, Hosseinkhani S, Naderi Manesh H, Sadeghizadeh M, Alipour B. Effect of charge distribution in a flexible loop on the bioluminescence color of firefly luciferases. Biochemistry. 2009;48:575-82 pubmed publisher
    ..The bioluminescence color of firefly luciferases is determined by the luciferase structure and assay conditions...
  4. Bakhtiarova A, Taslimi P, Elliman S, Kosinski P, Hubbard B, Kavana M, et al. Resveratrol inhibits firefly luciferase. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2006;351:481-4 pubmed
    ..Here, we report that resveratrol potently inhibits firefly luciferase with a K(i) value of 2microM, and caution that this confounding element may lead to compromised data interpretation. ..
  5. Fan F, Binkowski B, Butler B, Stecha P, Lewis M, Wood K. Novel genetically encoded biosensors using firefly luciferase. ACS Chem Biol. 2008;3:346-51 pubmed publisher
    ..These and other luminescent biosensors will be useful for the sensitive detection of cellular physiology in research and drug discovery. ..
  6. Alam M, Dixit V, Kang H, Li Z, Chen X, Trejo J, et al. Intracellular delivery of an anionic antisense oligonucleotide via receptor-mediated endocytosis. Nucleic Acids Res. 2008;36:2764-76 pubmed publisher
    ..These observations suggest that the bivalent RGD peptide-oligonucleotide conjugate enters cells via a process of receptor-mediated endocytosis mediated by the alphavbeta3 integrin. ..
  7. Li J, Holman D, Li H, Liu A, Beres B, Hankins G, et al. Long-term tracing of adenoviral expression in rat and rabbit using luciferase imaging. J Gene Med. 2005;7:792-802 pubmed
    ..Live imaging of luciferase expression can be performed not only in small animals, but also in larger animals such as rabbits. ..
  8. Malyarchuk S, Harrison L. DNA repair of clustered uracils in HeLa cells. J Mol Biol. 2005;345:731-43 pubmed
    ..This work indicates that the majority of the clustered lesions were not converted to DSBs and that repair systems in mammalian cells may have established mechanisms to avoid the accumulation of SSB-repair intermediates. ..
  9. Maghami P, Ranjbar B, Hosseinkhani S, Ghasemi A, Moradi A, Gill P. Relationship between stability and bioluminescence color of firefly luciferase. Photochem Photobiol Sci. 2010;9:376-83 pubmed publisher
    ..The bioluminescence color of firefly luciferases is identified by the luciferase structure and assay conditions...

More Information


  1. Svetlov M, Kommer A, Kolb V, Spirin A. Effective cotranslational folding of firefly luciferase without chaperones of the Hsp70 family. Protein Sci. 2006;15:242-7 pubmed
    ..The results presented suggest that the chaperones of the Hsp70 family are not required for effective cotranslational folding of firefly luciferase. ..
  2. Doyle T, Nawotka K, Purchio A, Akin A, Francis K, Contag P. Expression of firefly luciferase in Candida albicans and its use in the selection of stable transformants. Microb Pathog. 2006;40:69-81 pubmed
    ..The firefly luciferase gene can, therefore, be used as a sensitive reporter to analyze gene function both in laboratory and clinical isolates of this medically important yeast. ..
  3. Kimura Y, Nishimura F, Abe S, Fukunaga T, Tanii H, Saijoh K. Polymorphisms in the promoter region of the human class II alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH4) gene affect both transcriptional activity and ethanol metabolism in Japanese subjects. J Toxicol Sci. 2009;34:89-97 pubmed
  4. Mahller Y, Vaikunth S, Ripberger M, Baird W, Saeki Y, Cancelas J, et al. Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-3 via oncolytic herpesvirus inhibits tumor growth and vascular progenitors. Cancer Res. 2008;68:1170-9 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings support the further development of combined TIMP-3 and oncolytic virotherapy for cancer. ..
  5. Hatch N. Potential role of PC-1 expression and pyrophosphate elaboration in the molecular etiology of the FGFR-associated craniosynostosis syndromes. Orthod Craniofac Res. 2007;10:53-8 pubmed
    ..These results suggest that the expression of PC-1 downstream of FGF signaling is an integral aspect of osteoblastic function, and that pyrophosphate elaboration may play a significant role in the pathology of craniosynostosis. ..
  6. Hu J, Qiu F, Yin B, Gong Y, Yuan J, Qiang B, et al. [Bioluminescent imaging monitoring of a anti-angiogenesis therapeutic gene vasostatin in tumor cell PC3]. Zhongguo Yi Xue Ke Xue Yuan Xue Bao. 2007;29:312-7 pubmed
    ..In vivo imaging of PC3-Fluc subcutaneous tumors showed that the mean tumor bioluminescence increased in animals over several weeks. Noninvasive monitoring facilitates the detection of gene expression in vivo and in vitro. ..
  7. McCarthy S, Licata J, Harty R. A luciferase-based budding assay for Ebola virus. J Virol Methods. 2006;137:115-9 pubmed
    ..This assay represents a promising high-throughput approach to identify inhibitors of EBOV budding. ..
  8. Yoo J, RajBhandary U. Requirements for translation re-initiation in Escherichia coli: roles of initiator tRNA and initiation factors IF2 and IF3. Mol Microbiol. 2008;67:1012-26 pubmed publisher
    ..Strikingly, overexpression of IF3 also blocked E. coli from acting as a host for propagation of M13 phage. ..
  9. Lesina E, Dames P, Flemmer A, Hajek K, Kirchner T, Bittmann I, et al. CpG-free plasmid DNA prevents deterioration of pulmonary function in mice. Eur J Pharm Biopharm. 2010;74:427-34 pubmed publisher
    ..These results demonstrate that aerosol delivery of CpG-free plasmid DNA is critical to avoid alteration of pulmonary function. Therefore, we suggest to use CpG-free pDNA for gene delivery to the lungs in future. ..
  10. Fu Q, Jia S, Sun Z, Tian F, Du J, Zhou Y, et al. PhiC31 integrase and liver-specific regulatory elements confer high-level, long-term expression of firefly luciferase in mouse liver. Biotechnol Lett. 2009;31:1151-7 pubmed publisher
    ..This study demonstrates the use of a combination of phage phiC31 integrase and liver-specific regulatory elements for generation of transgenic mice. ..
  11. Jeon Y, Choi Y, Kang J, Chung J, Lee Y, Kim C, et al. In vivo monitoring of DNA vaccine gene expression using firefly luciferase as a naked DNA. Vaccine. 2006;24:3057-62 pubmed
    ..These findings suggest that optical imaging using Fluc could be useful for monitoring the location, intensity and duration of gene expression of naked DNA vaccines in living animals non-invasively and repetitively. ..
  12. Zhang H, Qian D, Tan Y, Lee K, Gao P, Ren Y, et al. Digoxin and other cardiac glycosides inhibit HIF-1alpha synthesis and block tumor growth. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008;105:19579-86 pubmed publisher
  13. Kurihara M, Ohmuro Matsuyama Y, Ayabe K, Yamashita T, Yamaji H, Ueda H. Ultra sensitive firefly luciferase-based protein-protein interaction assay (FlimPIA) attained by hinge region engineering and optimized reaction conditions. Biotechnol J. 2016;11:91-9 pubmed publisher
    ..e. firefly luminescent intermediate-based protein-protein interaction assay (FlimPIA) using two mutant firefly luciferases (Flucs), which complement each other's deficient half reaction...
  14. Sato M, Johnson M, Zhang L, Gambhir S, Carey M, Wu L. Functionality of androgen receptor-based gene expression imaging in hormone refractory prostate cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 2005;11:3743-9 pubmed
    ..Together with the fact that majority of recurrent prostate cancers express AR and PSA, we foresee that the TSTA approach can be a promising gene therapy strategy for the advanced stages of prostate cancer. ..
  15. Chen I, Greve J, Gheysens O, Willmann J, Rodriguez Porcel M, Chu P, et al. Comparison of optical bioluminescence reporter gene and superparamagnetic iron oxide MR contrast agent as cell markers for noninvasive imaging of cardiac cell transplantation. Mol Imaging Biol. 2009;11:178-87 pubmed publisher
    ..Fluc BLI reporter gene imaging is a more accurate gauge of transplanted cell survival as compared to MRI of Feridex-labeled cells. ..
  16. Doyle T, Nawotka K, Kawahara C, Francis K, Contag P. Visualizing fungal infections in living mice using bioluminescent pathogenic Candida albicans strains transformed with the firefly luciferase gene. Microb Pathog. 2006;40:82-90 pubmed
  17. Tagami T, Barichello J, Kikuchi H, Ishida T, Kiwada H. The gene-silencing effect of siRNA in cationic lipoplexes is enhanced by incorporating pDNA in the complex. Int J Pharm. 2007;333:62-9 pubmed
    ..If and to what extent the experimental design is suitable to quantify RNA interference remains to be demonstrated. ..
  18. Rajaraman G, Yang G, Chen J, Chang T. Modulation of CYP1B1 and CYP1A1 gene expression and activation of aryl hydrocarbon receptor by Ginkgo biloba extract in MCF-10A human mammary epithelial cells. Can J Physiol Pharmacol. 2009;87:674-83 pubmed publisher
    ..Overall, our findings provide an impetus for future investigations on the effect of G. biloba extract in CYP1-mediated chemical carcinogenesis. ..
  19. Nagel A, Barker C, Berggren P, Illies C. Diphosphosinositol polyphosphates and energy metabolism: assay for ATP/ADP ratio. Methods Mol Biol. 2010;645:123-31 pubmed publisher
    ..This method gives a better signal-to-noise ratio than other methods that do not degrade the sample ATP, but convert ADP directly to ATP and then measure the sum of ATP plus ADP. ..
  20. Branchini B, Southworth T. A Highly Sensitive Biosensor for ATP Using a Chimeric Firefly Luciferase. Methods Enzymol. 2017;589:351-364 pubmed publisher
    b>Firefly luciferases, which emit visible light in a highly specific ATP-dependent process, have been adapted for a variety of applications based on the detection of the enzymes or using the proteins to measure ATP levels...
  21. Zhou Z, Lafleur E, Koshkina N, Worth L, Lester M, Kleinerman E. Interleukin-12 up-regulates Fas expression in human osteosarcoma and Ewing's sarcoma cells by enhancing its promoter activity. Mol Cancer Res. 2005;3:685-91 pubmed
    ..Understanding this mechanism may lead to new therapeutic approaches for the treatment of sarcoma involving the use of IL-12. ..
  22. McAnuff M, Rettig G, Rice K. Potency of siRNA versus shRNA mediated knockdown in vivo. J Pharm Sci. 2007;96:2922-30 pubmed
    ..The combination of hydrodynamic dosing and BLI to measure siRNA or shRNA mediated knockdown of luciferase provide an attractive in vivo quantitative method to test formulations that target the liver. ..
  23. Ebert M, Neilson J, Sharp P. MicroRNA sponges: competitive inhibitors of small RNAs in mammalian cells. Nat Methods. 2007;4:721-6 pubmed
    ..RNA polymerase II promoter (Pol II)-driven sponges contain a fluorescence reporter gene for identification and sorting of sponge-treated cells. We envision the use of stably expressed sponges in animal models of disease and development. ..
  24. Tarantal A, Lee C. Long-term luciferase expression monitored by bioluminescence imaging after adeno-associated virus-mediated fetal gene delivery in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). Hum Gene Ther. 2010;21:143-8 pubmed publisher
  25. Zhang Y, Bressler J, Neal J, Lal B, Bhang H, Laterra J, et al. ABCG2/BCRP expression modulates D-Luciferin based bioluminescence imaging. Cancer Res. 2007;67:9389-97 pubmed
    ..These findings highlight the need to consider ABCG2/BCRP effects during d-luciferin-based BLI and suggest novel high throughput methods for identifying new ABCG2/BCRP inhibitors. ..
  26. Paulmurugan R, Gambhir S. Firefly luciferase enzyme fragment complementation for imaging in cells and living animals. Anal Chem. 2005;77:1295-302 pubmed
  27. Joannard F, Rissel M, Gilot D, Anderson A, Orfila Lefeuvre L, Guillouzo A, et al. Role for mitogen-activated protein kinases in phenobarbital-induced expression of cytochrome P450 2B in primary cultures of rat hepatocytes. Toxicol Lett. 2006;161:61-72 pubmed
  28. Matsumoto S, Tanaka F, Sato K, Kimura S, Maekawa T, Hasegawa S, et al. Monitoring with a non-invasive bioluminescent in vivo imaging system of pleural metastasis of lung carcinoma. Lung Cancer. 2009;66:75-9 pubmed publisher
    ..3) Repeated intrapleural administration of docetaxel is effective. ..
  29. Branchini B, Gonzalez S, Magyar R. NMR assignment of the backbone resonances of the firefly luciferase C-terminal 14.3 kDa domain. J Biomol NMR. 2005;33:73 pubmed
  30. Urata M, Iwata R, Noda K, Murakami Y, Kuroda A. Detection of living Salmonella cells using bioluminescence. Biotechnol Lett. 2009;31:737-41 pubmed publisher
    ..This method resulted in approximately 1,000 times higher sensitivity in the detection of Salmonella (i.e. 10(3) c.f.u./ml) compared to immunochromatographic lateral flow assay. ..
  31. Prasad K, Xu Y, Yang Z, Toufektsian M, Berr S, French B. Topoisomerase inhibition accelerates gene expression after adeno-associated virus-mediated gene transfer to the mammalian heart. Mol Ther. 2007;15:764-71 pubmed
    ..Direct injection of the AAV2 vector and long-term luciferase gene expression had no detectable effects on normal cardiac function as assessed by magnetic resonance imaging. ..
  32. Oba Y, Sato M, Inouye S. Cloning and characterization of the homologous genes of firefly luciferase in the mealworm beetle, Tenebrio molitor. Insect Mol Biol. 2006;15:293-9 pubmed
    ..The transcripts were detected through the developmental stages in T. molitor. These results suggested that firefly luciferase was evolved from a fatty acyl-coenzyme A synthetase by gene duplications in the insect. ..
  33. O Mahony C, van der Kleij H, Bienenstock J, Shanahan F, O Mahony L. Loss of vagal anti-inflammatory effect: in vivo visualization and adoptive transfer. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2009;297:R1118-26 pubmed publisher
    ..The proinflammatory effect of vagotomy is transferable using splenic T cells and highlights a previously unappreciated cellular mechanism for linking central parasympathetic processes with mucosal inflammation and immune homeostasis. ..
  34. Matis S, Mariani M, Cutrona G, Cilli M, Piccardi F, Daga A, et al. PNAEmu can significantly reduce Burkitt's lymphoma tumor burden in a SCID mice model: cells dissemination similar to the human disease. Cancer Gene Ther. 2009;16:786-93 pubmed publisher
    ..Altogether, the data support the therapeutic potential of PNAEmu in human adult BL. ..
  35. Bryant K, Coen D. Inhibition of translation by a short element in the 5' leader of the herpes simplex virus 1 DNA polymerase transcript. J Virol. 2008;82:77-85 pubmed
    ..These results suggest that the inhibitory element regulates Pol translation during infection and that its inhibition of Pol translation is beneficial for viral replication. ..
  36. Fink M, Flekna G, Ludwig A, Heimbucher T, Czerny T. Improved translation efficiency of injected mRNA during early embryonic development. Dev Dyn. 2006;235:3370-8 pubmed
    ..Compared with established vector systems, we detected a 20-fold improvement for mRNA derived from the novel transcription vector pMC. ..
  37. Miura N, Kuroda K, Ueda M. Enzyme Evolution by Yeast Cell Surface Engineering. Methods Mol Biol. 2015;1319:217-32 pubmed publisher
    ..homologous recombination and library screening as a method for the artificial evolution of enzymes such as firefly luciferases. Using this method, novel luciferases with improved substrate specificity and substrate reactivity were ..
  38. Fraga H, Fernandes D, Fontes R, Esteves da Silva J. Coenzyme A affects firefly luciferase luminescence because it acts as a substrate and not as an allosteric effector. FEBS J. 2005;272:5206-16 pubmed
  39. Steiner D, Gelovani J, Savoldo B, Robinson S, Decker W, Brouard N, et al. Noninvasive bioluminescent imaging demonstrates long-term multilineage engraftment of ex vivo-expanded CD34-selected umbilical cord blood cells. Stem Cells. 2009;27:1932-40 pubmed publisher
    ..The results suggest that multipotent stem cells can be expanded ex vivo and can contribute meaningfully to long-term hematopoietic engraftment. ..
  40. Noda K, Goto H, Murakami Y, Ahmed A, Kuroda A. Endotoxin assay by bioluminescence using mutant firefly luciferase. Anal Biochem. 2010;397:152-5 pubmed publisher
    ..Therefore, we developed a new endotoxin detection method that combines the Limulus reaction and bioluminescence using mutant luciferase. The new method detects 0.0005EU/ml of endotoxin within 15min. ..
  41. Vallejos M, Ramdohr P, Valiente Echeverría F, Tapia K, Rodriguez F, Lowy F, et al. The 5'-untranslated region of the mouse mammary tumor virus mRNA exhibits cap-independent translation initiation. Nucleic Acids Res. 2010;38:618-32 pubmed publisher
    ..Finally, transfection assays showed that the MMTV-IRES exhibits cell type-dependent translational activity, suggesting a requirement for as yet unidentified cellular factors for its optimal function...
  42. Karetnikov A, Keranen M, Lehto K. Role of the RNA2 3' non-translated region of Blackcurrant reversion nepovirus in translational regulation. Virology. 2006;354:178-91 pubmed
    ..The BRV 3' CITE does not share similarity in nucleotide sequence and secondary structure with other viruses and thus represents a new class of 3' CITE. ..
  43. Lin C, Hsu J, Huang K, Tang H, Lai Y. Stable RNA interference in Spodoptera frugiperda cells by a DNA vector-based method. Biotechnol Lett. 2006;28:271-7 pubmed
    ..The luc dsRNA specifically and stably suppressed the baculovirus-mediated luciferase expression. Thus, gene silencing in Sf9 cells was achieved using DNA vectors similar to the facile design described in this study. ..
  44. Mackey S, Ditty J, Clerico E, Golden S. Detection of rhythmic bioluminescence from luciferase reporters in cyanobacteria. Methods Mol Biol. 2007;362:115-29 pubmed
    ..A choice of methods and equipment to detect light production from the luciferase fusions provides a means for high-throughput, automated mutant screens as well as testing rhythms from two promoter fusions within the same cell culture. ..
  45. Tafreshi N, Sadeghizadeh M, Emamzadeh R, Ranjbar B, Naderi Manesh H, Hosseinkhani S. Site-directed mutagenesis of firefly luciferase: implication of conserved residue(s) in bioluminescence emission spectra among firefly luciferases. Biochem J. 2008;412:27-33 pubmed publisher
    The bioluminescence colours of firefly luciferases are determined by assay conditions and luciferase structure...
  46. Jewell C, Hays M, Kondo Y, Abbott N, Lynn D. Ferrocene-containing cationic lipids for the delivery of DNA: oxidation state determines transfection activity. J Control Release. 2006;112:129-38 pubmed
    ..These results could form the basis of transfection procedures that exploit the redox behavior of ferrocene-containing lipids to achieve active spatial and temporal control over transfection using electrochemical methods. ..
  47. Ge J, Cheng B, He P, Wen H, Lu H, Chen X, et al. [Construction and identification of recombinant firefly luciferase report vector containing human acyl coenzyme a: cholesterol acyltransferase 1 gene P7 promoter]. Sheng Wu Yi Xue Gong Cheng Xue Za Zhi. 2008;25:1381-4 pubmed
    ..We successfully constructed luciferase reporter vector containing P7 promoter of the human ACAT1 gene, and established a new means to study the transcriptional regulation mechanisms of ACAT1 during atherosclerosis. ..
  48. Leitão J, Esteves da Silva J. Firefly luciferase inhibition. J Photochem Photobiol B. 2010;101:1-8 pubmed publisher
    ..This review summarizes the main inhibitors of Luc and the corresponding inhibition kinetic parameters...
  49. Chen H, Zhang H, McCallum C, Szoka F, Guo X. Unsaturated cationic ortho esters for endosome permeation in gene delivery. J Med Chem. 2007;50:4269-78 pubmed
    ..Lipid 2 significantly improved gene transfection in cultured cells compared to the pH-insensitive control lipid 1,2-dioleoyl-3-trimethylammoniopropane (DOTAP). ..
  50. Wu J, Spin J, Cao F, Lin S, Xie X, Gheysens O, et al. Transcriptional profiling of reporter genes used for molecular imaging of embryonic stem cell transplantation. Physiol Genomics. 2006;25:29-38 pubmed
    ..Taken together, this is the first study to analyze in detail the effects of reporter genes on molecular imaging of ES cells. ..
  51. Swijnenburg R, Govaert J, van der Bogt K, Pearl J, Huang M, Stein W, et al. Timing of bone marrow cell delivery has minimal effects on cell viability and cardiac recovery after myocardial infarction. Circ Cardiovasc Imaging. 2010;3:77-85 pubmed publisher
    ..Timing of BMC delivery has minimal effects on intramyocardial retention and preservation of cardiac function. In general, there is poor long-term engraftment and BMCs tend to adopt inflammatory cell phenotypes. ..
  52. Hirano T, Hasumi Y, Ohtsuka K, Maki S, Niwa H, Yamaji M, et al. Spectroscopic studies of the light-color modulation mechanism of firefly (beetle) bioluminescence. J Am Chem Soc. 2009;131:2385-96 pubmed publisher
    ..H bond between (1)(OL(-))* and a protonated basic moiety in the active site. Mechanisms for variation of the bioluminescence colors and their applications are discussed. ..
  53. Seethammagari M, Xie X, Greenberg N, Spencer D. EZC-prostate models offer high sensitivity and specificity for noninvasive imaging of prostate cancer progression and androgen receptor action. Cancer Res. 2006;66:6199-209 pubmed
    ..These models also provide powerful new reagents for developing improved drugs that inhibit the AR axis. ..