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Contact: Robert Sanders
University of California - Berkeley

GFP Chromophore

Caption: After GFP's chromophore absorbs a blue photon, its excited phenoxyl-ring wags rapidly back and forth, settling into a position that allows a negatively charged hydrogen atom -- a bare proton -- to hop along the dotted lines, leading to bright green fluorescence. The red balls are oxygen atoms, the small silver balls are hydrogen atoms (protons), the large silver balls are carbon atoms, and the blue balls are nitrogen. The green background is the barrel-like structure of GFP, which encloses the central chromophore.

Credit: Renee Frontiera & Chong Fang/UC Berkeley

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