Ion-channel-coupled receptor-based platform for a real-time measurement of G-protein-coupled receptor activities

Jong Hyun Lim, Eun Hae Oh, Juhun Park, Seunghun Hong, Tai Hyun Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


A simple but efficient measurement platform based on ion-channel-coupled receptors and nanovesicles was developed for monitoring the real-time activity of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). In this work, an olfactory receptor (OR), the most common class A GPCR, was covalently fused with a Kir6.2 channel so that the GPCR action directly induced the opening of the ion channels and changes in the electrical membrane potential without complex cellular signaling processes. This strategy reduced the measurement errors caused by instability of various cellular components. In addition, rather than using whole cells, a cell-surface-derived nanovesicle was used to preserve the membrane-integrated structure of GPCRs and to exclude case-dependent cellular conditions. Another merit of using the nanovesicle is that nanovesicles can be easily combined with nanomaterial-based field-effect transistors (FETs) to build a sensitive and stable measurement platform to monitor GPCR activities with high sensitivity in real-time. Using a platform based on carbon nanotube FETs and nanovesicles carrying Kir6.2-channel-coupled ORs, we monitored the real-time response of ORs to their ligand molecules. Significantly, since this platform does not rely on rather unstable cell signaling pathways, our platform could be utilized for a rather long time period without losing its functionality. This system can be utilized extensively for simple and sensitive analysis of the activities of various GPCRs and should enable various academic and practical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1699-1706
Number of pages8
JournalACS Nano
Issue number2
StatePublished - 24 Feb 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 American Chemical Society.


  • carbon nanotube
  • G-protein-coupled receptor
  • ion-channel-coupled receptor
  • Kir6.2
  • nanovesicle


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