cybLuc: An Effective Aminoluciferin Derivative for Deep Bioluminescence Imaging. Academic Article uri icon


  • To enhance the efficiency of firefly luciferase/luciferin bioluminescence imaging, a series of N-cycloalkylaminoluciferins (cyaLucs) were developed by introducing lipophilic N-cycloalkylated substitutions. The experimental results demonstrate that these cyaLucs are effective substrates for native firefly luciferase (Fluc) and can produce elevated bioluminescent signals in vitro, in cellulo, and in vivo. It should be noted that, in animal studies, N-cyclobutylaminoluciferin (cybLuc) at 10 M (0.1 mL), which is 0.01% of the standard dose of d-luciferin (dLuc) used in mouse imaging, can radiate 20-fold more bioluminescent light than d-luciferin (dLuc) or aminoluciferin (aLuc) at the same concentration. Longer in vivo emission imaging using cybLuc suggests that it can be used for long-time observation. Regarding the mechanism of cybLuc, our cocrystal structure data from firefly luciferase with oxidized cybLuc suggested that oxidized cybLuc fits into the same pocket as oxyluciferin. Most interestingly, our results demonstrate that the sensitivity of cybLuc in brain tumor imaging contributes to its extended application in deep tissues.

published proceedings

  • Anal Chem

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Wu, W., Su, J., Tang, C., Bai, H., Ma, Z., Zhang, T., ... Li, M.

citation count

  • 42

complete list of authors

  • Wu, Wenxiao||Su, Jing||Tang, Chunchao||Bai, Haixiu||Ma, Zhao||Zhang, Tianchao||Yuan, Zenglin||Li, Zhenzhen||Zhou, Wenjuan||Zhang, Huateng||Liu, Zhenzhen||Wang, Yue||Zhou, Yubin||Du, Lupei||Gu, Lichuan||Li, Minyong

publication date

  • May 2017