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To study membrane fusion mediated by synaptic proteins, proteoliposomes have been widely used for in vitro ensemble measurements with limited insights into the fusion mechanism. Single-particle techniques have proven to be powerful in overcoming the limitations of traditional ensemble methods. Here, we summarize current single-particle methods in biophysical and biochemical studies of fusion mediated by soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNAREs) and other synaptic proteins, together with their advantages and limitations.

Original publication




Journal article


Prog Lipid Res

Publication Date





92 - 100


Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer, Membrane Fusion, Membrane Lipids, Microscopy, Fluorescence, Proteolipids, SNARE Proteins, Single Molecule Imaging, Synaptic Transmission, Synaptic Vesicles