Green fluorescent protein (GFP) is one of the most important tools used in contemporary bioscience. Dr. Shoji Segami, Prof. Masayoshi Maeshima and his research group at the Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University have found that when GFPs are genetically inserted into the proton pump in the vacuole membranes of plants, GFP-dimers artificially stuck to each membrane, resulting in odd structures in the vacuole known as "bulbs." Furthermore, by inserting monomeric GFP, which does not dimerize, the formation of these odd structures was completely inhibited. Thus, the vacuoles in living cells can dynamically change their shapes and form the artifact of bulbs when influenced by dimeric GFPs. Actual morphology of vacuole can be observed by visualization of the proton pump with monomeric GFP.
The result has been published in The Plant Cell (vol. 26: 3416-3434, August 2014).