Detection of metabolic activity enables us to reveal the inherent metabolic state of cells and elucidate mechanisms underlying cellular homeostasis and growth. However, a fluorescence approach for the study of metabolic pathways is still largely unexplored. Herein, we have developed a new chemical probe for the fluorescence-based detection of fatty acid β-oxidation (FAO), a key process in lipid catabolism, in cells and tissues. This probe serves as a substrate of FAO and forms a reactive quinone methide (QM) as a result of metabolic reactions. The liberated QM is covalently captured by intracellular proteins, and subsequent bio-orthogonal ligation with a fluorophore enables fluorescence analysis. This reaction-based sensing allowed us to detect FAO activity in cells at a desired emission wavelength using diverse analytical techniques including fluorescence imaging, in-gel fluorescence activity-based protein profiling (ABPP), and fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). The probe was able to detect changes in FAO activity induced by chemical modulators in cultured cells. The probe was further employed for fluorescence imaging of FAO in mouse liver tissues and revealed the metabolic heterogeneity of FAO activity in hepatocytes by the combination of FACS and gene expression analysis, highlighting the utility of our probe as a chemical tool for fatty acid metabolism research.
!!!All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- 化学 (全般)