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Sample records for frog rod phototransduction

  1. Rod phototransduction modulated by bicarbonate in the frog retina: roles of carbonic anhydrase and bicarbonate exchange.

    PubMed Central

    Donner, K; Hemilä, S; Kalamkarov, G; Koskelainen, A; Shevchenko, T

    1990-01-01

    1. Effects on rod phototransduction following manipulation of retinal CO2-HCO3- and H+ fluxes were studied in dark-adapted retinas of the frog and the tiger salamander. 2. Rod photoresponses to brief flashes of light were recorded from the isolated sensory retina as electroretinogram mass receptor potentials and from isolated rods by the suction-pipette technique. The experimental treatments were: (1) varying [CO2] + [HCO3-] in the perfusion fluid: (2) applying acetazolamide (AAA), which inhibits the enzyme carbonic anhydrase (CA); and (3) applying 4,4'-diisothiocyanatostilbene-2,2'-disulphonic acid (DIDS) which blocks exchange mechanisms transporting HCO3- across cell membranes. 3. The concentration of the internal transmitter of the rods, cyclic GMP, was biochemically determined from the rod outer segment layer of retinas that had been incubated in the same solutions as were used for perfusion in the electrophysiological experiments. 4. The introduction of 6 mM-sodium bicarbonate to replace half the buffer of a nominally CO2-HCO3(-)-free (12 mM-phosphate or HEPES, [Na+] constant) Ringer solution doubled the cyclic GMP concentration in the rod outer segment layer and increased the saturating response amplitude and the relative sensitivity of rods in the intact retina. 5. The introduction of 0.5 mM-AAA into bicarbonate-containing Ringer solution accelerated the growth of saturated responses and sensitivity. Incubation of the retina in AAA-bicarbonate Ringer solution elevated the concentration of cyclic GMP ninefold compared with the phosphate control. 6. No effects of switching to bicarbonate-AAA Ringer solution were observed in the photocurrent of isolated rods drawn into suction pipettes with only the outer segment protruding into the perfusion fluid. The target of AAA is probably the CA-containing Müller cell. 7. The introduction of DIDS into the perfusate (at normal pH 7.5) set off a continuous decay of photoresponses which finally abolished light sensitivity

  2. Phototransduction in mouse rods and cones

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Yingbin; Yau, King-Wai

    2010-01-01

    Phototransduction is the process by which light triggers an electrical signal in a photoreceptor cell. Image-forming vision in vertebrates is mediated by two types of photoreceptors: the rods and the cones. In this review, we provide a summary of the success in which the mouse has served as a vertebrate model for studying rod phototransduction, with respect to both the activation and termination steps. Cones are still not as well-understood as rods partly because it is difficult to work with mouse cones due to their scarcity and fragility. The situation may change, however. PMID:17226052

  3. cAMP controls rod photoreceptor sensitivity via multiple targets in the phototransduction cascade

    PubMed Central

    Astakhova, Luba A.; Samoiliuk, Evgeniia V.; Govardovskii, Victor I.

    2012-01-01

    In early studies, both cyclic AMP (cAMP) and cGMP were considered as potential secondary messengers regulating the conductivity of the vertebrate photoreceptor plasma membrane. Later discovery of the cGMP specificity of cyclic nucleotide–gated channels has shifted attention to cGMP as the only secondary messenger in the phototransduction cascade, and cAMP is not considered in modern schemes of phototransduction. Here, we report evidence that cAMP may also be involved in regulation of the phototransduction cascade. Using a suction pipette technique, we recorded light responses of isolated solitary rods from the frog retina in normal solution and in the medium containing 2 µM of adenylate cyclase activator forskolin. Under forskolin action, flash sensitivity rose more than twofold because of a retarded photoresponse turn-off. The same concentration of forskolin lead to a 2.5-fold increase in the rod outer segment cAMP, which is close to earlier reported natural day/night cAMP variations. Detailed analysis of cAMP action on the phototransduction cascade suggests that several targets are affected by cAMP increase: (a) basal dark phosphodiesterase (PDE) activity decreases; (b) at the same intensity of light background, steady background-induced PDE activity increases; (c) at light backgrounds, guanylate cyclase activity at a given fraction of open channels is reduced; and (d) the magnitude of the Ca2+ exchanger current rises 1.6-fold, which would correspond to a 1.6-fold elevation of [Ca2+]in. Analysis by a complete model of rod phototransduction suggests that an increase of [Ca2+]in might also explain effects (b) and (c). The mechanism(s) by which cAMP could regulate [Ca2+]in and PDE basal activity is unclear. We suggest that these regulations may have adaptive significance and improve the performance of the visual system when it switches between day and night light conditions. PMID:23008435

  4. Toward a unified model of vertebrate rod phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    HAMER, R.D.; NICHOLAS, S.C.; TRANCHINA, D.; LAMB, T.D.; JARVINEN, J.L.P.

    2006-01-01

    Recently, we introduced a phototransduction model that was able to account for the reproducibility of vertebrate rod single-photon responses (SPRs) (Hamer et al., 2003). The model was able to reproduce SPR statistics by means of stochastic activation and inactivation of rhodopsin (R*), transducin (Gα), and phosphodiesterase (PDE). The features needed to capture the SPR statistics were (1) multiple steps of R* inactivation by means of multiple phosphorylations (followed by arrestin capping) and (2) phosphorylation dependence of the affinity between R* and the three molecules competing to bind with R* (Gα, arrestin, and rhodopsin kinase). The model was also able to account for several other rod response features in the dim-flash regime, including SPRs obtained from rods in which various elements of the cascade have been genetically disabled or disrupted. However, the model was not tested under high light-level conditions. We sought to evaluate the extent to which the multiple phosphorylation model could simultaneously account for single-photon response behavior, as well as responses to high light levels causing complete response saturation and/or significant light adaptation (LA). To date no single model, with one set of parameters, has been able to do this. Dim-flash responses and statistics were simulated using a hybrid stochastic/deterministic model and Monte-Carlo methods as in Hamer et al. (2003). A dark-adapted flash series, and stimulus paradigms from the literature eliciting various degrees of light adaptation (LA), were simulated using a full differential equation version of the model that included the addition of Ca2+-feedback onto rhodopsin kinase via recoverin. With this model, using a single set of parameters, we attempted to account for (1) SPR waveforms and statistics (as in Hamer et al., 2003); (2) a full dark-adapted flash-response series, from dim flash to saturating, bright flash levels, from a toad rod; (3) steady-state LA responses, including

  5. Using a Phototransduction System to Monitor the Isolated Frog Heart

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stephens, Philip J.

    2015-01-01

    A simple and inexpensive method of monitoring the movement of an isolated frog heart provides comparable results to those obtained with a force transducer. A commercially available photoresistor is integrated into a Wheatstone bridge circuit, and the output signal is interfaced directly with a recording device. An excised, beating frog heart is…

  6. Effect of 11-Cis 13-Demethylretinal on Phototransduction in Bleach-Adapted Rod and Cone Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Corson, D.Wesley; Kefalov, Vladimir J.; Cornwall, M. Carter; Crouch, Rosalie K.

    2000-01-01

    We used 11-cis 13-demethylretinal to examine the physiological consequences of retinal's noncovalent interaction with opsin in intact rod and cone photoreceptors during visual pigment regeneration. 11-Cis 13-demethylretinal is an analog of 11-cis retinal in which the 13 position methyl group has been removed. Biochemical experiments have shown that it is capable of binding in the chromophore pocket of opsin, forming a Schiff-base linkage with the protein to produce a pigment, but at a much slower rate than the native 11-cis retinal (Nelson, R., J. Kim deReil, and A. Kropf. 1970. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA. 66:531–538). Experimentally, this slow rate of pigment formation should allow separate physiological examination of the effects of the initial binding of retinal in the pocket and the subsequent formation of the protonated Schiff-base linkage. Currents from solitary rods and cones from the tiger salamander were recorded in darkness before and after bleaching and then after exposure to 11-cis 13-demethylretinal. In bleach-adapted rods, 11-cis 13-demethylretinal caused transient activation of phototransduction, as evidenced by a decrease of the dark current and sensitivity, acceleration of the dim flash responses, and activation of cGMP phosphodiesterase and guanylyl cyclase. The steady state of phototransduction activity was still higher than that of the bleach-adapted rod. In contrast, exposure of bleach-adapted cones to 11-cis 13-demethylretinal resulted in an immediate deactivation of transduction as measured by the same parameters. These results extend the validity of a model for the effects of the noncovalent binding of a retinoid in the chromophore pockets of rod and cone opsins to analogs capable of forming a Schiff-base and imply that the noncovalent binding by itself may play a role for the dark adaptation of photoreceptors. PMID:10919871

  7. Characterisation of light responses in the retina of mice lacking principle components of rod, cone and melanopsin phototransduction signalling pathways.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Steven; Rodgers, Jessica; Hickey, Doron; Foster, Russell G; Peirson, Stuart N; Hankins, Mark W

    2016-01-01

    Gnat(-/-), Cnga3(-/-), Opn4(-/-) triple knockout (TKO) mice lack essential components of phototransduction signalling pathways present in rods, cones and photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (pRGCs), and are therefore expected to lack all sensitivity to light. However, a number of studies have shown that light responses persist in these mice. In this study we use multielectrode array (MEA) recordings and light-induced c-fos expression to further characterise the light responses of the TKO retina. Small, but robust electroretinogram type responses are routinely detected during MEA recordings, with properties consistent with rod driven responses. Furthermore, a distinctive pattern of light-induced c-fos expression is evident in the TKO retina, with c-fos expression largely restricted to a small subset of amacrine cells that express disabled-1 (Dab1) but lack expression of glycine transporter-1 (GlyT-1). Collectively these data are consistent with the persistence of a novel light sensing pathway in the TKO retina that originates in rod photoreceptors, potentially a rare subset of rods with distinct functional properties, and which is propagated to an atypical subtype of AII amacrine cells. Furthermore, the minimal responses observed following UV light stimulation suggest only a limited role for the non-visual opsin OPN5 in driving excitatory light responses within the mouse retina. PMID:27301998

  8. Characterisation of light responses in the retina of mice lacking principle components of rod, cone and melanopsin phototransduction signalling pathways

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Steven; Rodgers, Jessica; Hickey, Doron; Foster, Russell G.; Peirson, Stuart N.; Hankins, Mark W.

    2016-01-01

    Gnat−/−, Cnga3−/−, Opn4−/− triple knockout (TKO) mice lack essential components of phototransduction signalling pathways present in rods, cones and photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (pRGCs), and are therefore expected to lack all sensitivity to light. However, a number of studies have shown that light responses persist in these mice. In this study we use multielectrode array (MEA) recordings and light-induced c-fos expression to further characterise the light responses of the TKO retina. Small, but robust electroretinogram type responses are routinely detected during MEA recordings, with properties consistent with rod driven responses. Furthermore, a distinctive pattern of light-induced c-fos expression is evident in the TKO retina, with c-fos expression largely restricted to a small subset of amacrine cells that express disabled-1 (Dab1) but lack expression of glycine transporter-1 (GlyT-1). Collectively these data are consistent with the persistence of a novel light sensing pathway in the TKO retina that originates in rod photoreceptors, potentially a rare subset of rods with distinct functional properties, and which is propagated to an atypical subtype of AII amacrine cells. Furthermore, the minimal responses observed following UV light stimulation suggest only a limited role for the non-visual opsin OPN5 in driving excitatory light responses within the mouse retina. PMID:27301998

  9. The phototransduction machinery in the rod outer segment has a strong efficacy gradient.

    PubMed

    Mazzolini, Monica; Facchetti, Giuseppe; Andolfi, Laura; Proietti Zaccaria, Remo; Tuccio, Salvatore; Treu, Johannes; Altafini, Claudio; Di Fabrizio, Enzo M; Lazzarino, Marco; Rapp, Gert; Torre, Vincent

    2015-05-19

    Rod photoreceptors consist of an outer segment (OS) and an inner segment. Inside the OS a biochemical machinery transforms the rhodopsin photoisomerization into electrical signal. This machinery has been treated as and is thought to be homogenous with marginal inhomogeneities. To verify this assumption, we developed a methodology based on special tapered optical fibers (TOFs) to deliver highly localized light stimulations. By using these TOFs, specific regions of the rod OS could be stimulated with spots of light highly confined in space. As the TOF is moved from the OS base toward its tip, the amplitude of saturating and single photon responses decreases, demonstrating that the efficacy of the transduction machinery is not uniform and is 5-10 times higher at the base than at the tip. This gradient of efficacy of the transduction machinery is attributed to a progressive depletion of the phosphodiesterase along the rod OS. Moreover we demonstrate that, using restricted spots of light, the duration of the photoresponse along the OS does not increase linearly with the light intensity as with diffuse light. PMID:25941368

  10. The phototransduction machinery in the rod outer segment has a strong efficacy gradient

    PubMed Central

    Mazzolini, Monica; Facchetti, Giuseppe; Andolfi, Laura; Proietti Zaccaria, Remo; Tuccio, Salvatore; Treu, Johannes; Altafini, Claudio; Di Fabrizio, Enzo M.; Lazzarino, Marco; Rapp, Gert; Torre, Vincent

    2015-01-01

    Rod photoreceptors consist of an outer segment (OS) and an inner segment. Inside the OS a biochemical machinery transforms the rhodopsin photoisomerization into electrical signal. This machinery has been treated as and is thought to be homogenous with marginal inhomogeneities. To verify this assumption, we developed a methodology based on special tapered optical fibers (TOFs) to deliver highly localized light stimulations. By using these TOFs, specific regions of the rod OS could be stimulated with spots of light highly confined in space. As the TOF is moved from the OS base toward its tip, the amplitude of saturating and single photon responses decreases, demonstrating that the efficacy of the transduction machinery is not uniform and is 5–10 times higher at the base than at the tip. This gradient of efficacy of the transduction machinery is attributed to a progressive depletion of the phosphodiesterase along the rod OS. Moreover we demonstrate that, using restricted spots of light, the duration of the photoresponse along the OS does not increase linearly with the light intensity as with diffuse light. PMID:25941368

  11. Quantitative modeling of the molecular steps underlying shut-off of rhodopsin activity in rod phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Kraft, Timothy W.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To examine the predictions of alternative models for the stochastic shut-off of activated rhodopsin (R*) and their implications for the interpretation of experimentally recorded single-photon responses (SPRs) in mammalian rods. Theory We analyze the transitions that an activated R* molecule undergoes as a result of successive phosphorylation steps and arrestin binding. We consider certain simplifying cases for the relative magnitudes of the reaction rate constants and derive the probability distributions for the time to arrestin binding. In addition to the conventional model in which R* catalytic activity declines in a graded manner with successive phosphorylations, we analyze two cases in which the activity is assumed to occur not via multiple small steps upon each phosphorylation but via a single large step. We refer to these latter two cases as the binary R* shut-off and three-state R* shut-off models. Methods We simulate R*’s stochastic reactions numerically for the three models. In the simplifying cases for the ratio of rate constants in the binary and three-state models, we show that the probability distribution of the time to arrestin binding is accurately predicted. To simulate SPRs, we then integrate the differential equations for the downstream reactions using a standard model of the rod outer segment that includes longitudinal diffusion of cGMP and Ca2+. Results Our simulations of SPRs in the conventional model of graded shut-off of R* conform closely to the simulations in a recent study. However, the gain factor required to account for the observed mean SPR amplitude is higher than can be accounted for from biochemical experiments. In addition, a substantial minority of the simulated SPRs exhibit features that have not been reported in published experiments. Our simulations of SPRs using the model of binary R* shut-off appear to conform closely to experimental results for wild type (WT) mouse rods, and the required gain factor conforms to

  12. A model for the recovery kinetics of rod phototransduction, based on the enzymatic deactivation of rhodopsin.

    PubMed Central

    Laitko, U; Hofmann, K P

    1998-01-01

    We propose a model for the recovery of the retinal rod photoresponse after a short stimulus. The approach describes the enzymatic deactivation of the photoactivated receptor, rhodopsin, by simple enzyme kinetics. An important feature of this description is that the R* deactivation obeys different time laws, depending on the numbers of R* formed per disc membrane and available enzyme molecules. If the enzyme works below substrate saturation, the rate of deactivation depends linearly on the number of R*, whereas for substrate saturation a hyperbolic relation--the well-known Michaelis-Menten equation--applies. This dichotomy is used to explain experimental finding that the relation between the saturation time of the photoresponse after short illumination and the flash strength has two sharply separated branches for low and high flash intensities (up to approximately 10% bleaching). By relating both branches to properties of the enzymatic rhodopsin deactivation, the new model transcends the classical notion of a constant characteristic lifetime of activated rhodopsin. With parameters that are plausible in the light of the available data and the additional information that the deactivating enzyme, rhodopsin kinase, and the signaling G-protein, transducin, compete for the active receptor, the slopes of the saturation function are correctly reproduced. PMID:9533693

  13. Activation and quenching of the phototransduction cascade in retinal cones as inferred from electrophysiology and mathematical modeling

    PubMed Central

    Astakhova, Luba; Firsov, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To experimentally identify and quantify factors responsible for the lower sensitivity of retinal cones compared to rods. Methods Electrical responses of frog rods and fish (Carassius) cones to short flashes of light were recorded using the suction pipette technique. A fast solution changer was used to apply a solution that fixed intracellular Ca2+ concentration at the prestimulus level, thereby disabling Ca2+ feedback, to the outer segment (OS). The results were analyzed with a specially designed mathematical model of phototransduction. The model included all basic processes of activation and quenching of the phototransduction cascade but omitted unnecessary mechanistic details of each step. Results Judging from the response versus intensity curves, Carassius cones were two to three orders of magnitude less sensitive than frog rods. There was a large scatter in sensitivity among individual cones, with red-sensitive cones being on average approximately two times less sensitive than green-sensitive ones. The scatter was mostly due to different signal amplification, since the kinetic parameters of the responses among cones were far less variable than sensitivity. We argue that the generally accepted definition of the biochemical amplification in phototransduction cannot be used for comparing amplification in rods and cones, since it depends on an irrelevant factor, that is, the cell’s volume. We also show that the routinely used simplified parabolic curve fitting to an initial phase of the response leads to a few-fold underestimate of the amplification. We suggest a new definition of the amplification that only includes molecular parameters of the cascade activation, and show how it can be derived from experimental data. We found that the mathematical model with unrestrained parameters can yield an excellent fit to experimental responses. However, the fits with wildly different sets of parameters can be virtually indistinguishable, and therefore cannot

  14. Light cycle--dependent axial variations in frog rod outer segment structure

    SciTech Connect

    Kaplan, M.W.

    1981-09-01

    Polarized light microscopy reveals that the structural parameters of Rana pipiens rod outer segments (ROS) are not uniform along the cell axis. In addition to a pronounced birefringence (delta n) gradient found in the basal half of most ROS, periodic delta n bands are seen in approximately 10% of intact ROS isolated by agitating retinas in frog Ringer's solution. These small delta n differences appear as very faint light and dark striations that have a period and width that depends on the duration of light and dark exposure. In ROS from frogs kept on a 14 hr light/10 hr dark cycle at 20 degrees to 22.5 degrees C, the band period for a light-dark band pair is 1.0 to 1.6 micron. Portions of ROS produced during total darkness or constant light are free of distinct periodic bands. Quantitative delta n measurements show that the ROS sections generated in the dark have a relatively higher delta n than those produced in light. Band contrast is irreversibly enhanced when ROS are treated with the calcium ionophore A23187 in the presence of calcium-free saline solution. These results indicate that the synthesis of some calcium-sensitive ROS component is different when the frog is in the dark than when exposed to light.

  15. RGS Protein Regulation of Phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ching-Kang Jason

    2015-01-01

    First identified in yeast and worm and later in other species, the physiological importance of regulators of G-protein signaling (RGS) in mammals was first demonstrated at the turn of the century in mouse retinal photoreceptors, in which RGS9 is needed for timely recovery of rod phototransduction. The role of RGS in vision has been established a synapse away in retinal depolarizing bipolar cells (DBCs), where RGS7 and RGS11 work redundantly and in a complex with Gβ5-S as GAPs for Goα in the metabotropic glutamate receptor 6 pathway at DBC dendritic tips. Much less is known on how RGS protein subserves vision in the rest of the visual system. The research into the roles of RGS proteins in vision holds great potential for many exciting new discoveries. PMID:26123301

  16. Longitudinal spread of adaptation in the rods of the frog's retina.

    PubMed

    Hemilä, S; Reuter, T

    1981-01-01

    1. The stimulus-response function of the red rods in the retina of the common frog (Rana temporaria) was determined in different adaptational states by measuring aspartate-isolated receptor responses. 2. Flash stimuli, background adaptations and bleaches were delivered through the same optical channel forming an oblique light-beam striking the receptor side of the isolated and flat-mounted retina at an angle of 10 degrees. 3. When the light was blue-green and optimally polarized the absorbance of the receptor layer was about 2, from which follows that 70-80% of the light was absorbed in the distal third of the rod outer segments, i.e. the exposure was local. Homogeneous exposures of the whole rod outer segments were obtained with orange and red lights. 4. Combinations of homogeneous and local stimuli with homogeneous and local adaptations were used to investigate the longitudinal spread of background, intermediate and opsin adaptation, i.e. the sensitivity-reducing effect of a background light, and the transient and permanent sensitivity losses following a bleach isomerizing 3.5-26% (usually 10%) of the rhodopsin in the retina. 5. The results obtained were related to predictions based both on the assumption that the adaptation effects spread longitudinally within the rod outer segments and the assumption that they are strictly confined to the disks absorbing the adapting lights. 6. These comparisons reveal that all three types of adaptation spread longitudinally. It is for instance clear that the sensitivity loss observed with homogeneous stimuli and local adaptation (as compared to homogeneous adaptation) is larger than that predicted by the non-spreading hypothesis. 7. The longitudinal spread of background adaptation is largely finished within 10 sec after turning on the background light, while an efficient spread of the intermediate adaptation effect may require minutes. 8. A background light decreasing the sensitivity by about one log unit decreases the time

  17. Targeted Ablation of the Pde6h Gene in Mice Reveals Cross-species Differences in Cone and Rod Phototransduction Protein Isoform Inventory*

    PubMed Central

    Brennenstuhl, Christina; Tanimoto, Naoyuki; Burkard, Markus; Wagner, Rebecca; Bolz, Sylvia; Trifunovic, Dragana; Kabagema-Bilan, Clement; Paquet-Durand, Francois; Beck, Susanne C.; Huber, Gesine; Seeliger, Mathias W.; Ruth, Peter; Wissinger, Bernd; Lukowski, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Phosphodiesterase-6 (PDE6) is a multisubunit enzyme that plays a key role in the visual transduction cascade in rod and cone photoreceptors. Each type of photoreceptor utilizes discrete catalytic and inhibitory PDE6 subunits to fulfill its physiological tasks, i.e. the degradation of cyclic guanosine-3′,5′-monophosphate at specifically tuned rates and kinetics. Recently, the human PDE6H gene was identified as a novel locus for autosomal recessive (incomplete) color blindness. However, the three different classes of cones were not affected to the same extent. Short wave cone function was more preserved than middle and long wave cone function indicating that some basic regulation of the PDE6 multisubunit enzyme was maintained albeit by a unknown mechanism. To study normal and disease-related functions of cone Pde6h in vivo, we generated Pde6h knock-out (Pde6h−/−) mice. Expression of PDE6H in murine eyes was restricted to both outer segments and synaptic terminals of short and long/middle cone photoreceptors, whereas Pde6h−/− retinae remained PDE6H-negative. Combined in vivo assessment of retinal morphology with histomorphological analyses revealed a normal overall integrity of the retinal organization and an unaltered distribution of the different cone photoreceptor subtypes upon Pde6h ablation. In contrast to human patients, our electroretinographic examinations of Pde6h−/− mice suggest no defects in cone/rod-driven retinal signaling and therefore preserved visual functions. To this end, we were able to demonstrate the presence of rod PDE6G in cones indicating functional substitution of PDE6. The disparities between human and murine phenotypes caused by mutant Pde6h/PDE6H suggest species-to-species differences in the vulnerability of biochemical and neurosensory pathways of the visual signal transduction system. PMID:25739440

  18. Targeted ablation of the Pde6h gene in mice reveals cross-species differences in cone and rod phototransduction protein isoform inventory.

    PubMed

    Brennenstuhl, Christina; Tanimoto, Naoyuki; Burkard, Markus; Wagner, Rebecca; Bolz, Sylvia; Trifunovic, Dragana; Kabagema-Bilan, Clement; Paquet-Durand, Francois; Beck, Susanne C; Huber, Gesine; Seeliger, Mathias W; Ruth, Peter; Wissinger, Bernd; Lukowski, Robert

    2015-04-17

    Phosphodiesterase-6 (PDE6) is a multisubunit enzyme that plays a key role in the visual transduction cascade in rod and cone photoreceptors. Each type of photoreceptor utilizes discrete catalytic and inhibitory PDE6 subunits to fulfill its physiological tasks, i.e. the degradation of cyclic guanosine-3',5'-monophosphate at specifically tuned rates and kinetics. Recently, the human PDE6H gene was identified as a novel locus for autosomal recessive (incomplete) color blindness. However, the three different classes of cones were not affected to the same extent. Short wave cone function was more preserved than middle and long wave cone function indicating that some basic regulation of the PDE6 multisubunit enzyme was maintained albeit by a unknown mechanism. To study normal and disease-related functions of cone Pde6h in vivo, we generated Pde6h knock-out (Pde6h(-/-)) mice. Expression of PDE6H in murine eyes was restricted to both outer segments and synaptic terminals of short and long/middle cone photoreceptors, whereas Pde6h(-/-) retinae remained PDE6H-negative. Combined in vivo assessment of retinal morphology with histomorphological analyses revealed a normal overall integrity of the retinal organization and an unaltered distribution of the different cone photoreceptor subtypes upon Pde6h ablation. In contrast to human patients, our electroretinographic examinations of Pde6h(-/-) mice suggest no defects in cone/rod-driven retinal signaling and therefore preserved visual functions. To this end, we were able to demonstrate the presence of rod PDE6G in cones indicating functional substitution of PDE6. The disparities between human and murine phenotypes caused by mutant Pde6h/PDE6H suggest species-to-species differences in the vulnerability of biochemical and neurosensory pathways of the visual signal transduction system. PMID:25739440

  19. Evolution of Vertebrate Phototransduction: Cascade Activation

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, Trevor D.; Patel, Hardip; Chuah, Aaron; Natoli, Riccardo C.; Davies, Wayne I. L.; Hart, Nathan S.; Collin, Shaun P.; Hunt, David M.

    2016-01-01

    We applied high-throughput sequencing to eye tissue from several species of basal vertebrates (a hagfish, two species of lamprey, and five species of gnathostome fish), and we analyzed the mRNA sequences for the proteins underlying activation of the phototransduction cascade. The molecular phylogenies that we constructed from these sequences are consistent with the 2R WGD model of two rounds of whole genome duplication. Our analysis suggests that agnathans retain an additional representative (that has been lost in gnathostomes) in each of the gene families we studied; the evidence is strong for the G-protein α subunit (GNAT) and the cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDE6), and indicative for the cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGA and CNGB). Two of the species (the hagfish Eptatretus cirrhatus and the lamprey Mordacia mordax) possess only a single class of photoreceptor, simplifying deductions about the composition of cascade protein isoforms utilized in their photoreceptors. For the other lamprey, Geotria australis, analysis of the ratios of transcript levels in downstream and upstream migrant animals permits tentative conclusions to be drawn about the isoforms used in four of the five spectral classes of photoreceptor. Overall, our results suggest that agnathan rod-like photoreceptors utilize the same GNAT1 as gnathostomes, together with a homodimeric PDE6 that may be agnathan-specific, whereas agnathan cone-like photoreceptors utilize a GNAT that may be agnathan-specific, together with the same PDE6C as gnathostomes. These findings help elucidate the evolution of the vertebrate phototransduction cascade from an ancestral chordate phototransduction cascade that existed prior to the vertebrate radiation. PMID:27189541

  20. Evolution of Vertebrate Phototransduction: Cascade Activation.

    PubMed

    Lamb, Trevor D; Patel, Hardip; Chuah, Aaron; Natoli, Riccardo C; Davies, Wayne I L; Hart, Nathan S; Collin, Shaun P; Hunt, David M

    2016-08-01

    We applied high-throughput sequencing to eye tissue from several species of basal vertebrates (a hagfish, two species of lamprey, and five species of gnathostome fish), and we analyzed the mRNA sequences for the proteins underlying activation of the phototransduction cascade. The molecular phylogenies that we constructed from these sequences are consistent with the 2R WGD model of two rounds of whole genome duplication. Our analysis suggests that agnathans retain an additional representative (that has been lost in gnathostomes) in each of the gene families we studied; the evidence is strong for the G-protein α subunit (GNAT) and the cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDE6), and indicative for the cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGA and CNGB). Two of the species (the hagfish Eptatretus cirrhatus and the lamprey Mordacia mordax) possess only a single class of photoreceptor, simplifying deductions about the composition of cascade protein isoforms utilized in their photoreceptors. For the other lamprey, Geotria australis, analysis of the ratios of transcript levels in downstream and upstream migrant animals permits tentative conclusions to be drawn about the isoforms used in four of the five spectral classes of photoreceptor. Overall, our results suggest that agnathan rod-like photoreceptors utilize the same GNAT1 as gnathostomes, together with a homodimeric PDE6 that may be agnathan-specific, whereas agnathan cone-like photoreceptors utilize a GNAT that may be agnathan-specific, together with the same PDE6C as gnathostomes. These findings help elucidate the evolution of the vertebrate phototransduction cascade from an ancestral chordate phototransduction cascade that existed prior to the vertebrate radiation. PMID:27189541

  1. Why Drosophila to Study Phototransduction?

    PubMed Central

    Pak, William L.

    2010-01-01

    This review recounts the early history of Drosophila phototransduction genetics, covering the period between approximately 1966 to 1979. Early in this period, the author felt that there was an urgent need for a new approach in phototransduction research. Through inputs from a number of colleagues, he was led to consider isolating Drosophila mutants that are defective in the electroretinogram. Thanks to the efforts of dedicated associates and technical staff, by the end of this period, he was able to accumulate a large number of such mutants. Particularly important in this effort was the use of the mutant assay protocol based on the “prolonged depolarizing afterpotential.” This collection of mutants formed the basis of the subsequent intensive investigations of the Drosophila phototransduction cascade by many investigators. PMID:20536286

  2. Expression of the functional cone phototransduction cascade in retinoblastoma.

    PubMed Central

    Hurwitz, R L; Bogenmann, E; Font, R L; Holcombe, V; Clark, D

    1990-01-01

    Retinoblastoma is a malignant intraocular tumor that primarily affects small children. These tumors are primitive neuroectodermal malignancies, however some of them show morphologic evidence of differentiation into photoreceptors. Phototransduction cascades are a series of biochemical reactions that convert a photon of light into a neural impulse in rods and cones. The components of these cascades are uniquely expressed in photoreceptors and, although functionally similar, distinct components of these cascades are expressed in rods and cones. Using HPLC anion exchange chromatography, Western blot analysis, and specific monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies, we found that the cone but not the rod cGMP phosphodiesterase is functionally expressed in all six primary retinoblastomas examined and in three continuous retinoblastoma cell lines. Morphologic evidence of differentiation did not correlate with the expression of the enzyme. Furthermore, GTP analogues could activate the phosphodiesterase activity suggesting that an intact phototransduction cascade is present in the tumors. The presence of the cone phototransduction cascade in retinoblastoma confirms that this tumor has biochemically differentiated along the cone cell lineage. Images PMID:2161431

  3. Why do green rods of frog and toad retinas look green?

    PubMed

    Govardovskii, Victor I; Reuter, Tom

    2014-09-01

    Amphibian “green” rods express a blue-sensitive cone visual pigment, and should look yellow. However,when observing them axially under microscope one sees them as green. We used single-cell microspectrophotometry (MSP) to reveal the basis of the perceived color of these photoreceptors. Conventional side-on MSP recording of the proximal cell segments reveals no selective longwave absorbing pigment explaining the green color. End-on MSP recording shows, in addition to the green rod visual pigment, an extra 2- to 4-fold attenuation being almost flat throughout the visible spectrum. This attenuation is absent in red (rhodopsin) rods, and vanishes in green rods when the retina is bathed in high-refractive media, and at wide illumination aperture. The same treatments change the color from green to yellow. It seems that the non-visual pigment attenuation is a result of slender green rod myoids operating as non-selective light guides. We hypothesize that narrow myoids, combined with photomechanical movements of melanin granules, allow a wide range of sensitivity regulation supporting the operation of green rods as blue receptors at mesopic-to low-photopic illumination levels.End-on transmittance spectrum of green rods looks similar to the reflectance spectrum of khaki military uniforms. So their greenness is the combined result of optics and human color vision. PMID:25015297

  4. Timing Is Everything: GTPase Regulation in Phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Arshavsky, Vadim Y.; Wensel, Theodore G.

    2013-01-01

    As the molecular mechanisms of vertebrate phototransduction became increasingly clear in the 1980s, a persistent problem was the discrepancy between the slow GTP hydrolysis catalyzed by the phototransduction G protein, transducin, and the much more rapid physiological recovery of photoreceptor cells from light stimuli. Beginning with a report published in 1989, a series of studies revealed that transducin GTPase activity could approach the rate needed to explain physiological recovery kinetics in the presence of one or more factors present in rod outer segment membranes. One by one, these factors were identified, beginning with PDEγ, the inhibitory subunit of the cGMP phosphodiesterase activated by transducin. There followed the discovery of the crucial role played by the regulator of G protein signaling, RGS9, a member of a ubiquitous family of GTPase-accelerating proteins, or GAPs, for heterotrimeric G proteins. Soon after, the G protein β isoform Gβ5 was identified as an obligate partner subunit, followed by the discovery or R9AP, a transmembrane protein that anchors the RGS9 GAP complex to the disk membrane, and is essential for the localization, stability, and activity of this complex in vivo. The physiological importance of all of the members of this complex was made clear first by knockout mouse models, and then by the discovery of a human visual defect, bradyopsia, caused by an inherited deficiency in one of the GAP components. Further insights have been gained by high-resolution crystal structures of subcomplexes, and by extensive mechanistic studies both in vitro and in animal models. PMID:24265205

  5. Docosahexaenoate-containing molecular species of glycerophospholipids from frog retinal rod outer segments show different rates of biosynthesis and turnover

    SciTech Connect

    Louie, K.; Wiegand, R.D.; Anderson, R.E.

    1988-12-13

    The authors have studied the de novo synthesis and subsequent turnover of major docosahexaenoate-containing molecular species in frog rod outer segment (ROS) phospholipids following intravitreal injection of (2-/sup 3/H)glycerol. On selected days after injection, ROS were prepared and phospholipids extracted. Phosphatidylcholine (PC), phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), and phosphatidylserine (PS) were isolated and converted to diradylglycerols with phospholipase C. Diradylglycerols were derivatized with benzoic anhydride and resolve into diacylglycerobenzoates and ether-linked glycerobenzoates. The diacylglycerobenzoates were fractionated into molecular species by HPLC, quantitated, and counted for radioactivity. Label was incorporated into ROS phospholipids by day 1 and was followed up through the eighth day. The dipolyenoic species 22:6-22:6 from PC showed 1 3-5 times higher radiospecific activity than the same species from either PE or PS. The rate of decline was determined by calculating the half-life of each molecular species, which was used as a measure of the turnover of the species. The percent distribution of radioactivity in the molecular species of PC and PE was quite different from the relative mass distribution at day 1. However, percent dpm approached the mole percent by 31 days. In PS, percent dpm and mole percent were the same at all time points. These results indicate that the molecular species composition of PC and PE in frog retinal ROS is determined by a combination of factors, which include rate of synthesis, rate of degradation, and selective interconversions. In contrast, PS composition appears to be determined at the time of synthesis.

  6. Melanopsin Tristability for Sustained and Broadband Phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Emanuel, Alan Joseph; Do, Michael Tri Hoang

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Mammals rely upon three ocular photoreceptors to sense light: rods, cones, and intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs). Rods and cones resolve details in the visual scene. Conversely, ipRGCs integrate over time and space, primarily to support “non-image” vision. The integrative mechanisms of ipRGCs are enigmatic, particularly since these cells use a phototransduction motif that allows invertebrates like Drosophila to parse light with exceptional temporal resolution. Here, we provide evidence for a single mechanism that allows ipRGCs to integrate over both time and wavelength. Light distributes the visual pigment, melanopsin, across three states, two silent and one signaling. Photoequilibration among states maintains pigment availability for sustained signaling, stability of the signaling state permits minutes-long temporal summation, and modest spectral separation of the silent states promotes uniform activation across wavelengths. By broadening the tuning of ipRGCs in both temporal and chromatic domains, melanopsin tristability produces signal integration for physiology and behavior. PMID:25741728

  7. Regulation of Mammalian Cone Phototransduction by Recoverin and Rhodopsin Kinase*

    PubMed Central

    Sakurai, Keisuke; Chen, Jeannie; Khani, Shahrokh C.; Kefalov, Vladimir J.

    2015-01-01

    Cone photoreceptors function under daylight conditions and are essential for color perception and vision with high temporal and spatial resolution. A remarkable feature of cones is that, unlike rods, they remain responsive in bright light. In rods, light triggers a decline in intracellular calcium, which exerts a well studied negative feedback on phototransduction that includes calcium-dependent inhibition of rhodopsin kinase (GRK1) by recoverin. Rods and cones share the same isoforms of recoverin and GRK1, and photoactivation also triggers a calcium decline in cones. However, the molecular mechanisms by which calcium exerts negative feedback on cone phototransduction through recoverin and GRK1 are not well understood. Here, we examined this question using mice expressing various levels of GRK1 or lacking recoverin. We show that although GRK1 is required for the timely inactivation of mouse cone photoresponse, gradually increasing its expression progressively delays the cone response recovery. This surprising result is in contrast with the known effect of increasing GRK1 expression in rods. Notably, the kinetics of cone responses converge and become independent of GRK1 levels for flashes activating more than ∼1% of cone pigment. Thus, mouse cone response recovery in bright light is independent of pigment phosphorylation and likely reflects the spontaneous decay of photoactivated visual pigment. We also find that recoverin potentiates the sensitivity of cones in dim light conditions but does not contribute to their capacity to function in bright light. PMID:25673692

  8. pH changes in frog rods upon manipulation of putative pH-regulating transport mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Kalamkarov, G; Pogozheva, I; Shevchenko, T; Koskelainen, A; Hemila, S; Donner, K

    1996-10-01

    Rod intracellular pH (pHi) in the intact frog retina was measured fluorometrically with the dye 2',7'-bis(2-carboxyethyl)-5(and-6)-carboxyfluorescein under treatments chosen to affect putative pH-regulating transport mechanisms in the plasma membrane. The purpose was to relate possible pHi changes to previously reported effects on photoresponses. In nominally bicarbonate-free Ringer, application of amiloride (1 mM) or substitution of 95 mM external Na+ by K+ or choline triggered monotonic but reversible acidifications, consistent with inhibition of Na+/H+ exchange. Bicarbonate-dependent mechanisms were characterized as follows: (1) Replacing half of a 12 mM phosphate buffer by bicarbonate caused a sustained rise of pHi. (2) Subsequent application of the anion transport inhibitor 4,4'-diisothiocyanatostilbene-2',2'-disulphonic acid (DIDS, 0.2 mM) set off a slow acidification. (3) Substitution of external Cl- by gluconate (95 mM) caused a rapid pHi rise both in normal Na+ and low-Na+ perfusion. (4) This effect was inhibited by DIDS. The results support a consistent explanation of parallel electrophysiological experiments on the assumption that intracellular acidifications reduce and alkalinizations (in a certain range) augment photoresponses. It is concluded that both Na+/H+ exchange and bicarbonate transport control rod pHi, modulating the light-sensitive current. Part of the bicarbonate transport is by Na(+)-independent HCO3-/Cl- exchange, but a further Na(+)-coupled bicarbonate import mechanism is implicated. PMID:8917766

  9. Modulation of the cGMP-gated ion channel in frog rods by calmodulin and an endogenous inhibitory factor.

    PubMed Central

    Gordon, S E; Downing-Park, J; Zimmerman, A L

    1995-01-01

    1. Outer segment patches excised in the light were used to investigate the effects of exogenous calmodulin and an endogenous inhibitory factor on the cGMP-gated channel of frog rods. 2. Calmodulin shifted to the right the dose-response relation for activation of the channels by 8-Br-cGMP, but did not change the maximum current or the form of the relation. Reversal of this effect by removal of calmodulin was accelerated by brief exposure to saturating [8-Br-cGMP]. Inhibition by calmodulin required calcium and gave as much as a 5-fold decrease in current for an [8-Br-cGMP] functionally comparable to the presumed physiological [cGMP]. 3. Exposure to low [Ca2+]i (tens of nanomolar) appeared to irreversibly remove or inactivate an endogenous channel inhibitory factor from the patches, increasing the current at low [8-Br-cGMP]. Like calmodulin, this factor slowed the voltage-dependent channel-gating kinetics and did not change the maximum current. However, unlike calmodulin, the endogenous factor remained stably associated with the patches at high [Ca2+]i (1 microM), even with exposure to saturating [8-Br-cGMP]. 4. After the low-Ca2+ treatment increased the current, calmodulin reduced the current to about the same level as it had before the low-Ca2+ treatment, giving a larger fractional suppression. Furthermore, patches with high initial sensitivity to 8-Br-cGMP had small low-Ca2+ effects and large calmodulin effects, while the reverse was true for patches with low initial agonist sensitivity. 5. Application of trypsin to the intracellular surface of the patch prevented the responses to calmodulin and to low [Ca2+]i, suggesting involvement of a cytoplasmic portion of the channel. However, trypsin also reduced the total agonist-induced patch current. 6. Our results are consistent with a model in which calmodulin and an endogenous calcium-binding protein compete for the same site, inhibiting channel opening or cGMP binding. The tight association of the endogenous factor

  10. Small molecule antagonists of melanopsin-mediated phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Kenneth A.; Hatori, Megumi; Mure, Ludovic S.; Bramley, Jayne R.; Artymyshyn, Roman; Hong, Sang-Phyo; Marzabadi, Mohammad; Zhong, Huailing; Sprouse, Jeffrey; Zhu, Quansheng; Hartwick, Andrew T.E.; Sollars, Patricia J.; Pickard, Gary E.; Panda, Satchidananda

    2013-01-01

    Melanopsin, expressed in a subset of retinal ganglion cells, mediates behavioral adaptation to ambient light and other non-image forming photic responses. This has raised the possibility that pharmacological manipulation of melanopsin can modulate several CNS responses including photophobia, sleep, circadian rhythms and neuroendocrine function. Here we describe the identification of a potent synthetic melanopsin antagonist with in vivo activity. Novel sulfonamide compounds inhibiting melanopsin (opsinamides) compete with retinal binding to melanopsin and inhibit its function without affecting rod/cone mediated responses. In vivo administration of opsinamides to mice specifically and reversibly modified melanopsin-dependent light responses including the pupillary light reflex and light aversion. The discovery of opsinamides raises the prospect of therapeutic control of the melanopsin phototransduction system to regulate light-dependent behavior and remediate pathological conditions. PMID:23974117

  11. Selection of Phototransduction Genes in Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Christopher, Mark; Scheetz, Todd E.; Mullins, Robert F.; Abràmoff, Michael D.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose. We investigated the evidence of recent positive selection in the human phototransduction system at single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and gene level. Methods. SNP genotyping data from the International HapMap Project for European, Eastern Asian, and African populations was used to discover differences in haplotype length and allele frequency between these populations. Numeric selection metrics were computed for each SNP and aggregated into gene-level metrics to measure evidence of recent positive selection. The level of recent positive selection in phototransduction genes was evaluated and compared to a set of genes shown previously to be under recent selection, and a set of highly conserved genes as positive and negative controls, respectively. Results. Six of 20 phototransduction genes evaluated had gene-level selection metrics above the 90th percentile: RGS9, GNB1, RHO, PDE6G, GNAT1, and SLC24A1. The selection signal across these genes was found to be of similar magnitude to the positive control genes and much greater than the negative control genes. Conclusions. There is evidence for selective pressure in the genes involved in retinal phototransduction, and traces of this selective pressure can be demonstrated using SNP-level and gene-level metrics of allelic variation. We hypothesize that the selective pressure on these genes was related to their role in low light vision and retinal adaptation to ambient light changes. Uncovering the underlying genetics of evolutionary adaptations in phototransduction not only allows greater understanding of vision and visual diseases, but also the development of patient-specific diagnostic and intervention strategies. PMID:23868983

  12. Modeling the Role of Incisures in Vertebrate Phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Caruso, Giovanni; Bisegna, Paolo; Shen, Lixin; Andreucci, Daniele; Hamm, Heidi E.; DiBenedetto, Emmanuele

    2006-01-01

    Phototransduction is mediated by a G-protein-coupled receptor-mediated cascade, activated by light and localized to rod outer segment (ROS) disk membranes, which, in turn, drives a diffusion process of the second messengers cGMP and Ca2+ in the ROS cytosol. This process is hindered by disks—which, however, bear physical cracks, known as incisures, believed to favor the longitudinal diffusion of cGMP and Ca2+. This article is aimed at highlighting the biophysical functional role and significance of incisures, and their effect on the local and global response of the photocurrent. Previous work on this topic regarded the ROS as well stirred in the radial variables, lumped the diffusion mechanism on the longitudinal axis of the ROS, and replaced the cytosolic diffusion coefficients by effective ones, accounting for incisures through their total patent area only. The fully spatially resolved model recently published by our group is a natural tool to take into account other significant details of incisures, including their geometry and distribution. Using mathematical theories of homogenization and concentrated capacity, it is shown here that the complex diffusion process undergone by the second messengers cGMP and Ca2+ in the ROS bearing incisures can be modeled by a family of two-dimensional diffusion processes on the ROS cross sections, glued together by other two-dimensional diffusion processes, accounting for diffusion in the ROS outer shell and in the bladelike regions comprised by the stack of incisures. Based on this mathematical model, a code has been written, capable of incorporating an arbitrary number of incisures and activation sites, with any given arbitrary distribution within the ROS. The code is aimed at being an operational tool to perform numerical experiments of phototransduction, in rods with incisures of different geometry and structure, under a wide spectrum of operating conditions. The simulation results show that incisures have a dual

  13. Melanopsin phototransduction: slowly emerging from the dark.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Steven; Hankins, Mark W; Foster, Russell G; Peirson, Stuart N

    2012-01-01

    Melanopsin expressing retinal ganglion cells represent a third class of ocular photoreceptors and are involved in irradiance detection and non-image-forming responses to light including pupil constriction, circadian entrainment, and regulation of sleep. Over recent years, there has been a rapid increase in our understanding of the anatomical variety of pRGC subtypes, the regions of the brain which they innervate, and the behavioral responses of melanopsin-based light detection. However, by contrast, our understanding of the intracellular signaling cascade initiated following activation of melanopsin has, until recently, remained poorly characterized. This chapter focus on the melanopsin signaling pathway, detailing the cellular mechanisms of phototransduction that occur within pRGCs, highlighting recent advances, but also the gaps in our understanding of this important light detecting system. PMID:22877657

  14. Phototransduction Influences Metabolic Flux and Nucleotide Metabolism in Mouse Retina.

    PubMed

    Du, Jianhai; Rountree, Austin; Cleghorn, Whitney M; Contreras, Laura; Lindsay, Ken J; Sadilek, Martin; Gu, Haiwei; Djukovic, Danijel; Raftery, Dan; Satrústegui, Jorgina; Kanow, Mark; Chan, Lawrence; Tsang, Stephen H; Sweet, Ian R; Hurley, James B

    2016-02-26

    Production of energy in a cell must keep pace with demand. Photoreceptors use ATP to maintain ion gradients in darkness, whereas in light they use it to support phototransduction. Matching production with consumption can be accomplished by coupling production directly to consumption. Alternatively, production can be set by a signal that anticipates demand. In this report we investigate the hypothesis that signaling through phototransduction controls production of energy in mouse retinas. We found that respiration in mouse retinas is not coupled tightly to ATP consumption. By analyzing metabolic flux in mouse retinas, we also found that phototransduction slows metabolic flux through glycolysis and through intermediates of the citric acid cycle. We also evaluated the relative contributions of regulation of the activities of α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase and the aspartate-glutamate carrier 1. In addition, a comprehensive analysis of the retinal metabolome showed that phototransduction also influences steady-state concentrations of 5'-GMP, ribose-5-phosphate, ketone bodies, and purines. PMID:26677218

  15. Speeding rod recovery improves temporal resolution in the retina

    PubMed Central

    Fortenbach, Christopher R.; Kessler, Christopher; Peinado, Gabriel; Burns, Marie E.

    2015-01-01

    The temporal resolution of the visual system progressively increases with light intensity. Under scotopic conditions, temporal resolution is relatively poor, and may be limited by both retinal and cortical processes. Rod photoresponses themselves are quite slow because of the slowly deactivating biochemical cascade needed for light transduction. Here, we have used a transgenic mouse line with faster than normal rod phototransduction deactivation (RGS9-overexpressors) to test whether rod signaling to second-order retinal neurons is rate-limited by phototransduction or by other mechanisms. We compared electrical responses of individual wild-type and RGS9-overexpressing (RGS9-ox) rods to steady illumination and found that RGS9-ox rods required 2-fold brighter light for comparable activation, owing to faster G-protein deactivation. When presented with flickering stimuli, RGS9-ox rods showed greater magnitude fluctuations around a given steady-state current amplitude. Likewise, in vivo electroretinography (ERG) and whole-cell recording from OFF-bipolar, rod bipolar, and horizontal cells of RGS9-ox mice displayed larger than normal magnitude flicker responses, demonstrating an improved ability to transmit frequency information across the rod synapse. Slow phototransduction recovery therefore limits synaptic transmission of increments and decrements of light intensity across the first retinal synapse in normal retinas, apparently sacrificing temporal responsiveness for greater overall sensitivity in ambient light. PMID:25748270

  16. Prolongation of Actions of Ca2+ Early in Phototransduction by 9-Demethylretinal

    PubMed Central

    Matthews, Hugh R.; Cornwall, M.C.; Crouch, R.K.

    2001-01-01

    During adaptation Ca2+ acts on a step early in phototransduction, which is normally available for only a brief period after excitation. To investigate the identity of this step, we studied the effect of the light-induced decline in intracellular Ca2+ concentration on the response to a bright flash in normal rods, and in rods bleached and regenerated with 11-cis 9-demethylretinal, which forms a photopigment with a prolonged photoactivated lifetime. Changes in cytoplasmic Ca2+ were opposed by rapid superfusion of the outer segment with a 0Na+/0Ca2+ solution designed to minimize Ca2+ fluxes across the surface membrane. After regeneration of a bleached rod with 9-demethlyretinal, the response in Ringer's to a 440-nm bright flash was prolonged in comparison with the unbleached control, and the response remained in saturation for 10–15s. If the dynamic fall in Ca2+i induced by the flash was delayed by stepping the outer segment to 0Na+/0Ca2+ solution just before the flash and returning it to Ringer's shortly before recovery, then the response saturation was prolonged further, increasing linearly by 0.41 ± 0.01 of the time spent in this solution. In contrast, even long exposures to 0Na+/0Ca2+ solution of rods containing native photopigment evoked only a modest response prolongation on the return to Ringer's. Furthermore, if the rod was preexposed to steady subsaturating light, thereby reducing the cytoplasmic calcium concentration, then the prolongation of the bright flash response evoked by 0Na+/0Ca2+ solution was reduced in a graded manner with increasing background intensity. These results indicate that altering the chromophore of rhodopsin prolongs the time course of the Ca2+-dependent step early in the transduction cascade so that it dominates response recovery, and suggest that it is associated with photopigment quenching by phosphorylation. PMID:11585850

  17. A Calcium-Relay Mechanism in Vertebrate Phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Calcium-signaling in cells requires a fine-tuned system of calcium-transport proteins involving ion channels, exchangers, and ion-pumps but also calcium-sensor proteins and their targets. Thus, control of physiological responses very often depends on incremental changes of the cytoplasmic calcium concentration, which are sensed by calcium-binding proteins and are further transmitted to specific target proteins. This Review will focus on calcium-signaling in vertebrate photoreceptor cells, where recent physiological and biochemical data indicate that a subset of neuronal calcium sensor proteins named guanylate cyclase-activating proteins (GCAPs) operate in a calcium-relay system, namely, to make gradual responses to small changes in calcium. We will further integrate this mechanism in an existing computational model of phototransduction showing that it is consistent and compatible with the dynamics that are characteristic for the precise operation of the phototransduction pathways. PMID:23472635

  18. 49 CFR 236.327 - Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail..., AND APPLIANCES Interlocking Rules and Instructions § 236.327 Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail. Switch, movable-point frog, or split-point derail equipped with lock rod shall be maintained...

  19. 49 CFR 236.327 - Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail..., AND APPLIANCES Interlocking Rules and Instructions § 236.327 Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail. Switch, movable-point frog, or split-point derail equipped with lock rod shall be maintained...

  20. 49 CFR 236.327 - Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail..., AND APPLIANCES Interlocking Rules and Instructions § 236.327 Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail. Switch, movable-point frog, or split-point derail equipped with lock rod shall be maintained...

  1. 49 CFR 236.327 - Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail..., AND APPLIANCES Interlocking Rules and Instructions § 236.327 Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail. Switch, movable-point frog, or split-point derail equipped with lock rod shall be maintained...

  2. 49 CFR 236.327 - Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail..., AND APPLIANCES Interlocking Rules and Instructions § 236.327 Switch, movable-point frog or split-point derail. Switch, movable-point frog, or split-point derail equipped with lock rod shall be maintained...

  3. Fantastic Frogs!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Kym

    2002-01-01

    Number rhymes can be used in many exciting and different ways to support the early learning goals for mathematics. The rhyme "five little speckled frogs" provides the theme for this display, which was set up in Lewisham's professional development center. It provides a range of ideas which would help develop young children's mathematical learning…

  4. UVA Phototransduction Drives Early Melanin Synthesis in Human Melanocytes

    PubMed Central

    Wicks, Nadine L.; Chan, Jason W.; Najera, Julia A.; Ciriello, Jonathan M.; Oancea, Elena

    2013-01-01

    Summary Exposure of human skin to solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR), a powerful carcinogen [1] comprising ~95% UVA and ~5% UVB at the Earth’s surface, promotes melanin synthesis in epidermal melanocytes [2, 3], which protects skin from DNA damage [4, 5]. UVB causes DNA lesions [6] that lead to transcriptional activation of melanin-producing enzymes, resulting in delayed skin pigmentation within days [7]. In contrast, UVA causes primarily oxidative damage [8] and leads to immediate pigment darkening (IPD) within minutes, via an unknown mechanism [9, 10]. No receptor protein directly mediating phototransduction in skin has been identified. Here we demonstrate that exposure of primary human epidermal melanocytes (HEMs) to UVA causes calcium mobilization and early melanin synthesis. Calcium responses were abolished by treatment with G protein or PLC inhibitors, or by depletion of intracellular calcium stores. We show that the visual photopigment rhodopsin [11] is expressed in HEMs and contributes to UVR phototransduction. Upon UVR exposure, significant melanin production was measured within one hour; cellular melanin continued to increase in a retinal- and calcium-dependent manner up to five-fold after 24 hours. Our findings identify a novel UVA-sensitive signaling pathway in melanocytes that leads to calcium mobilization and melanin synthesis, and may underlie the mechanism of IPD in human skin. PMID:22055294

  5. Induction of the Unfolded Protein Response by Constitutive G-protein Signaling in Rod Photoreceptor Cells*

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Tian; Chen, Jeannie

    2014-01-01

    Phototransduction is a G-protein signal transduction cascade that converts photon absorption to a change in current at the plasma membrane. Certain genetic mutations affecting the proteins in the phototransduction cascade cause blinding disorders in humans. Some of these mutations serve as a genetic source of “equivalent light” that activates the cascade, whereas other mutations lead to amplification of the light response. How constitutive phototransduction causes photoreceptor cell death is poorly understood. We showed that persistent G-protein signaling, which occurs in rod arrestin and rhodopsin kinase knock-out mice, caused a rapid and specific induction of the PERK pathway of the unfolded protein response. These changes were not observed in the cGMP-gated channel knock-out rods, an equivalent light condition that mimics light-stimulated channel closure. Thus transducin signaling, but not channel closure, triggers rapid cell death in light damage caused by constitutive phototransduction. Additionally, we show that in the albino light damage model cell death was not associated with increase in global protein ubiquitination or unfolded protein response induction. Taken together, these observations provide novel mechanistic insights into the cell death pathway caused by constitutive phototransduction and identify the unfolded protein response as a potential target for therapeutic intervention. PMID:25183010

  6. Organization of cGMP sensing structures on the rod photoreceptor outer segment plasma membrane

    PubMed Central

    Nemet, Ina; Tian, Guilian; Imanishi, Yoshikazu

    2014-01-01

    A diffusion barrier segregates the plasma membrane of the rod photoreceptor outer segment into 2 domains; one which is optimized for the conductance of ions in the phototransduction cascade and another for disk membrane synthesis. We propose the former to be named “phototransductive plasma membrane domain," and the latter to be named “disk morphogenic plasma membrane domain." Within the phototransductive plasma membrane, cGMP-gated channels are concentrated in striated membrane features, which are proximally located to the sites of active cGMP production within the disk membranes. For proper localization of cGMP-gated channel to the phototransductive plasma membrane, the glutamic acid-rich protein domain encoded in the β subunit plays a critical role. Quantitative study suggests that the disk morphogenic domain likely plays an important role in enriching rhodopsin prior to its sequestration into closed disk membranes. Thus, this and our previous studies provide new insight into the mechanism that spatially organizes the vertebrate phototransduction cascade. PMID:25616687

  7. Rodding Surgery

    MedlinePlus

    ... Rods can be made of stainless steel or titanium. Regular rods do not expand. They have many ... v regular), the rod materials (stainless steel v titanium) and the age for a first rodding surgery. ...

  8. Frog eat frog: exploring variables influencing anurophagy.

    PubMed

    Measey, G John; Vimercati, Giovanni; de Villiers, F André; Mokhatla, Mohlamatsane M; Davies, Sarah J; Edwards, Shelley; Altwegg, Res

    2015-01-01

    Background. Frogs are generalist predators of a wide range of typically small prey items. But descriptions of dietary items regularly include other anurans, such that frogs are considered to be among the most important of anuran predators. However, the only existing hypothesis for the inclusion of anurans in the diet of post-metamorphic frogs postulates that it happens more often in bigger frogs. Moreover, this hypothesis has yet to be tested. Methods. We reviewed the literature on frog diet in order to test the size hypothesis and determine whether there are other putative explanations for anurans in the diet of post-metamorphic frogs. In addition to size, we recorded the habitat, the number of other sympatric anuran species, and whether or not the population was invasive. We controlled for taxonomic bias by including the superfamily in our analysis. Results. Around one fifth of the 355 records included anurans as dietary items of populations studied, suggesting that frogs eating anurans is not unusual. Our data showed a clear taxonomic bias with ranids and pipids having a higher proportion of anuran prey than other superfamilies. Accounting for this taxonomic bias, we found that size in addition to being invasive, local anuran diversity, and habitat produced a model that best fitted our data. Large invasive frogs that live in forests with high anuran diversity are most likely to have a higher proportion of anurans in their diet. Conclusions. We confirm the validity of the size hypothesis for anurophagy, but show that there are additional significant variables. The circumstances under which frogs eat frogs are likely to be complex, but our data may help to alert conservationists to the possible dangers of invading frogs entering areas with threatened anuran species. PMID:26336644

  9. Frog eat frog: exploring variables influencing anurophagy

    PubMed Central

    Vimercati, Giovanni; de Villiers, F. André; Mokhatla, Mohlamatsane M.; Davies, Sarah J.; Edwards, Shelley; Altwegg, Res

    2015-01-01

    Background. Frogs are generalist predators of a wide range of typically small prey items. But descriptions of dietary items regularly include other anurans, such that frogs are considered to be among the most important of anuran predators. However, the only existing hypothesis for the inclusion of anurans in the diet of post-metamorphic frogs postulates that it happens more often in bigger frogs. Moreover, this hypothesis has yet to be tested. Methods. We reviewed the literature on frog diet in order to test the size hypothesis and determine whether there are other putative explanations for anurans in the diet of post-metamorphic frogs. In addition to size, we recorded the habitat, the number of other sympatric anuran species, and whether or not the population was invasive. We controlled for taxonomic bias by including the superfamily in our analysis. Results. Around one fifth of the 355 records included anurans as dietary items of populations studied, suggesting that frogs eating anurans is not unusual. Our data showed a clear taxonomic bias with ranids and pipids having a higher proportion of anuran prey than other superfamilies. Accounting for this taxonomic bias, we found that size in addition to being invasive, local anuran diversity, and habitat produced a model that best fitted our data. Large invasive frogs that live in forests with high anuran diversity are most likely to have a higher proportion of anurans in their diet. Conclusions. We confirm the validity of the size hypothesis for anurophagy, but show that there are additional significant variables. The circumstances under which frogs eat frogs are likely to be complex, but our data may help to alert conservationists to the possible dangers of invading frogs entering areas with threatened anuran species. PMID:26336644

  10. [Phototransduction mediated by melanopsin in intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells].

    PubMed

    Domínguez-Solís, Carlos Augusto; Pérez-León, Jorge Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Melanopsin is the most recent photopigment described. As all the other opsins, it attaches in the retina as chromophore. Its amino acid sequence resembles more invertebrate opsins than those of vertebrates. The signal transduction pathway of opsins in vertebrates is based on the coupling to the G protein transducin, triggering a signaling cascade that results in the hyperpolarization of the plasma membrane. On the contrary, the photoreceptors of invertebrates activate the Gq protein pathway, which leads to depolarizing responses. Phototransduction mediated by melanopsin leads to the depolarization of those cells where it is expressed, the intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells; the cellular messengers and the ion channel type(s) responsible for the cells´ response is still unclear. Studies to elucidate the signaling cascade of melanopsin in heterologous expression systems, in retina and isolated/cultured intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells, have provided evidence for the involvement of protein Gq and phospholipase C together with the likely participation of an ion channel member of the transient receptor potential-canonical family, a transduction pathway similar to invertebrate photopigments, particularly Drosophila melanogaster. The intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells are the sole source of retinal inferences to the suprachiasmatic nucleus; thus, clarifying completely the melanopsin signaling pathway will impact the chronobiology field, including the clinical aspects. PMID:26581535

  11. Functional genomics identifies regulators of the phototransduction machinery in the Drosophila larval eye and adult ocelli.

    PubMed

    Mishra, Abhishek Kumar; Bargmann, Bastiaan O R; Tsachaki, Maria; Fritsch, Cornelia; Sprecher, Simon G

    2016-02-15

    Sensory perception of light is mediated by specialized Photoreceptor neurons (PRs) in the eye. During development all PRs are genetically determined to express a specific Rhodopsin (Rh) gene and genes mediating a functional phototransduction pathway. While the genetic and molecular mechanisms of PR development is well described in the adult compound eye, it remains unclear how the expression of Rhodopsins and the phototransduction cascade is regulated in other visual organs in Drosophila, such as the larval eye and adult ocelli. Using transcriptome analysis of larval PR-subtypes and ocellar PRs we identify and study new regulators required during PR differentiation or necessary for the expression of specific signaling molecules of the functional phototransduction pathway. We found that the transcription factor Krüppel (Kr) is enriched in the larval eye and controls PR differentiation by promoting Rh5 and Rh6 expression. We also identified Camta, Lola, Dve and Hazy as key genes acting during ocellar PR differentiation. Further we show that these transcriptional regulators control gene expression of the phototransduction cascade in both larval eye and adult ocelli. Our results show that PR cell type-specific transcriptome profiling is a powerful tool to identify key transcriptional regulators involved during several aspects of PR development and differentiation. Our findings greatly contribute to the understanding of how combinatorial action of key transcriptional regulators control PR development and the regulation of a functional phototransduction pathway in both larval eye and adult ocelli. PMID:26769100

  12. Stimulus-evoked outer segment changes in rod photoreceptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Xiaohui; Thapa, Damber; Wang, Benquan; Lu, Yiming; Gai, Shaoyan; Yao, Xincheng

    2016-06-01

    Rod-dominated transient retinal phototropism (TRP) has been recently observed in freshly isolated mouse and frog retinas. Comparative confocal microscopy and optical coherence tomography revealed that the TRP was predominantly elicited from the rod outer segment (OS). However, the biophysical mechanism of rod OS dynamics is still unknown. Mouse and frog retinal slices, which displayed a cross-section of retinal photoreceptors and other functional layers, were used to test the effect of light stimulation on rod OSs. Time-lapse microscopy revealed stimulus-evoked conformational changes of rod OSs. In the center of the stimulated region, the length of the rod OS shrunk, while in the peripheral region, the rod OS swung toward the center region. Our experimental observation and theoretical analysis suggest that the TRP may reflect unbalanced rod disc-shape changes due to localized visible light stimulation.

  13. The probabilistic cell: implementation of a probabilistic inference by the biochemical mechanisms of phototransduction.

    PubMed

    Houillon, Audrey; Bessière, Pierre; Droulez, Jacques

    2010-09-01

    When we perceive the external world, our brain has to deal with the incompleteness and uncertainty associated with sensory inputs, memory and prior knowledge. In theoretical neuroscience probabilistic approaches have received a growing interest recently, as they account for the ability to reason with incomplete knowledge and to efficiently describe perceptive and behavioral tasks. How can the probability distributions that need to be estimated in these models be represented and processed in the brain, in particular at the single cell level? We consider the basic function carried out by photoreceptor cells which consists in detecting the presence or absence of light. We give a system-level understanding of the process of phototransduction based on a bayesian formalism: we show that the process of phototransduction is equivalent to a temporal probabilistic inference in a Hidden Markov Model (HMM), for estimating the presence or absence of light. Thus, the biochemical mechanisms of phototransduction underlie the estimation of the current state probability distribution of the presence of light. A classical descriptive model describes the interactions between the different molecular messengers, ions, enzymes and channel proteins occurring within the photoreceptor by a set of nonlinear coupled differential equations. In contrast, the probabilistic HMM model is described by a discrete recurrence equation. It appears that the binary HMM has a general solution in the case of constant input. This allows a detailed analysis of the dynamics of the system. The biochemical system and the HMM behave similarly under steady-state conditions. Consequently a formal equivalence can be found between the biochemical system and the HMM. Numerical simulations further extend the results to the dynamic case and to noisy input. All in all, we have derived a probabilistic model equivalent to a classical descriptive model of phototransduction, which has the additional advantage of assigning a

  14. Nr2e3-directed transcriptional regulation of genes involved in photoreceptor development and cell-type specific phototransduction.

    PubMed

    Haider, Neena B; Mollema, Nissa; Gaule, Meghan; Yuan, Yang; Sachs, Andrew J; Nystuen, Arne M; Naggert, Jürgen K; Nishina, Patsy M

    2009-09-01

    The retinal transcription factor Nr2e3 plays a key role in photoreceptor development and function. In this study we examine gene expression in the retina of Nr2e3(rd7/rd7) mutants with respect to wild-type control mice, to identify genes that are misregulated and hence potentially function in the Nr2e3 transcriptional network. Quantitative candidate gene real time PCR and subtractive hybridization approaches were used to identify transcripts that were misregulated in Nr2e3(rd7/rd7) mice. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays were then used to determine which of the misregulated transcripts were direct targets of NR2E3. We identified 24 potential targets of NR2E3. In the developing retina, NR2E3 targets transcription factors such as Ror1, Rorg, and the nuclear hormone receptors Nr1d1 and Nr2c1. In the mature retina NR2E3 targets several genes including the rod specific gene Gnb1 and cone specific genes blue opsin, and two of the cone transducin subunits, Gnat2 and Gnb3. In addition, we identified 5 novel transcripts that are targeted by NR2E3. While mislocalization of proteins between rods and cones was not observed, we did observe diminished concentration of GNB1 protein in adult Nr2e3(rd7/rd7) retinas. These studies identified novel transcriptional pathways that are potentially targeted by Nr2e3 in the retina and specifically demonstrate a novel role for NR2E3 in regulating genes involved in phototransduction. PMID:19379737

  15. cGMP in mouse rods: the spatiotemporal dynamics underlying single photon responses

    PubMed Central

    Pugh Jr., Edward N.; Burns, Marie E.

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrate vision begins when retinal photoreceptors transduce photons into electrical signals that are then relayed to other neurons in the eye, and ultimately to the brain. In rod photoreceptors, transduction of single photons is achieved by a well-understood G-protein cascade that modulates cGMP levels, and in turn, cGMP-sensitive inward current. The spatial extent and depth of the decline in cGMP during the single photon response (SPR) have been major issues in phototransduction research since the discovery that single photons elicit substantial and reproducible changes in membrane current. The spatial profile of cGMP decline during the SPR affects signal gain, and thus may contribute to reduction of trial-to-trial fluctuations in the SPR. Here we summarize the general principles of rod phototransduction, emphasizing recent advances in resolving the spatiotemporal dynamics of cGMP during the SPR. PMID:25788876

  16. Origin and Impact of Phototransduction Noise in Primate Cone Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Angueyra, Juan Manuel; Rieke, Fred

    2013-01-01

    Noise in the responses of cone photoreceptors sets a fundamental limit to visual sensitivity, yet the origin of noise in mammalian cones and its relation to behavioral sensitivity are poorly understood. Our work here on primate cones improves understanding of these issues in three ways. First, we find that cone noise is not dominated by spontaneous photopigment activation or by quantal fluctuations in photon absorption but instead by other sources, namely channel noise and fluctuations in cGMP. Second, we find that adaptation in cones, unlike that in rods, affects signals and noise differently. This difference helps explain why thresholds for rod- and cone-mediated signals have different dependencies on background light level. Third, past estimates of noise in mammalian cones are too high to explain behavioral sensitivity. Our measurements indicate a lower level of cone noise, and thus help reconcile physiological and behavioral estimates of cone noise and sensitivity. PMID:24097042

  17. Yet More Frogs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shutler, Paul M. E.

    2011-01-01

    Extending a recent paper by Derek Holton, we show how to represent the algorithm for the Frog Problem diagrammatically. This diagrammatic representation suggests a simpler proof of the symmetrical case (equal numbers of frogs of each colour) by allowing the even and odd cases to be treated together. It also provides a proof in the asymmetrical…

  18. The evolution of phototransduction from an ancestral cyclic nucleotide gated pathway

    PubMed Central

    Plachetzki, David C.; Fong, Caitlin R.; Oakley, Todd H.

    2010-01-01

    The evolutionary histories of complex traits are complicated because such traits are comprised of multiple integrated and interacting components, which may have different individual histories. Phylogenetic studies of complex trait evolution often do not take this into account, instead focusing only on the history of whole, integrated traits; for example, mapping eyes as simply present or absent through history. Using the biochemistry of animal vision as a model, we demonstrate how investigating the individual components of complex systems can aid in elucidating both the origins and diversification of such systems. Opsin-based phototransduction underlies all visual phenotypes in animals, using complex protein cascades that translate light information into changes in cyclic nucleotide gated (CNG) or canonical transient receptor potential (TRPC) ion-channel activity. Here we show that CNG ion channels play a role in cnidarian phototransduction. Transcripts of a CNG ion channel co-localize with opsin in specific cell types of the eyeless cnidarian Hydra magnipapillata. Further, the CNG inhibitor cis-diltiazem ablates a stereotypical photoresponse in the hydra. Our findings in the Cnidaria, the only non-bilaterian lineage to possess functional opsins, allow us to trace the history of CNG-based photosensitivity to the very origin of animal phototransduction. Our general analytical approach, based on explicit phylogenetic analysis of individual components, contrasts the deep evolutionary history of CNG-based phototransduction, today used in vertebrate vision, with the more recent assembly of TRPC-based systems that are common to protostome (e.g. fly and mollusc) vision. PMID:20219739

  19. Progestins alter photo-transduction cascade and circadian rhythm network in eyes of zebrafish (Danio rerio)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Yanbin; Fent, Karl

    2016-02-01

    Environmental progestins are implicated in endocrine disruption in vertebrates. Additional targets that may be affected in organisms are poorly known. Here we report that progesterone (P4) and drospirenone (DRS) interfere with the photo-transduction cascade and circadian rhythm network in the eyes of zebrafish. Breeding pairs of adult zebrafish were exposed to P4 and DRS for 21 days with different measured concentrations of 7-742 ng/L and 99-13´650 ng/L, respectively. Of totally 10 key photo-transduction cascade genes analyzed, transcriptional levels of most were significantly up-regulated, or normal down-regulation was attenuated. Similarly, for some circadian rhythm genes, dose-dependent transcriptional alterations were also observed in the totally 33 genes analyzed. Significant alterations occurred even at environmental relevant levels of 7 ng/L P4. Different patterns were observed for these transcriptional alterations, of which, the nfil3 family displayed most significant changes. Furthermore, we demonstrate the importance of sampling time for the determination and interpretation of gene expression data, and put forward recommendations for sampling strategies to avoid false interpretations. Our results suggest that photo-transduction signals and circadian rhythm are potential targets for progestins. Further studies are required to assess alterations on the protein level, on physiology and behavior, as well as on implications in mammals.

  20. Progestins alter photo-transduction cascade and circadian rhythm network in eyes of zebrafish (Danio rerio).

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yanbin; Fent, Karl

    2016-01-01

    Environmental progestins are implicated in endocrine disruption in vertebrates. Additional targets that may be affected in organisms are poorly known. Here we report that progesterone (P4) and drospirenone (DRS) interfere with the photo-transduction cascade and circadian rhythm network in the eyes of zebrafish. Breeding pairs of adult zebrafish were exposed to P4 and DRS for 21 days with different measured concentrations of 7-742 ng/L and 99-13´650 ng/L, respectively. Of totally 10 key photo-transduction cascade genes analyzed, transcriptional levels of most were significantly up-regulated, or normal down-regulation was attenuated. Similarly, for some circadian rhythm genes, dose-dependent transcriptional alterations were also observed in the totally 33 genes analyzed. Significant alterations occurred even at environmental relevant levels of 7 ng/L P4. Different patterns were observed for these transcriptional alterations, of which, the nfil3 family displayed most significant changes. Furthermore, we demonstrate the importance of sampling time for the determination and interpretation of gene expression data, and put forward recommendations for sampling strategies to avoid false interpretations. Our results suggest that photo-transduction signals and circadian rhythm are potential targets for progestins. Further studies are required to assess alterations on the protein level, on physiology and behavior, as well as on implications in mammals. PMID:26899944

  1. Progestins alter photo-transduction cascade and circadian rhythm network in eyes of zebrafish (Danio rerio)

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Yanbin; Fent, Karl

    2016-01-01

    Environmental progestins are implicated in endocrine disruption in vertebrates. Additional targets that may be affected in organisms are poorly known. Here we report that progesterone (P4) and drospirenone (DRS) interfere with the photo-transduction cascade and circadian rhythm network in the eyes of zebrafish. Breeding pairs of adult zebrafish were exposed to P4 and DRS for 21 days with different measured concentrations of 7–742 ng/L and 99-13´650 ng/L, respectively. Of totally 10 key photo-transduction cascade genes analyzed, transcriptional levels of most were significantly up-regulated, or normal down-regulation was attenuated. Similarly, for some circadian rhythm genes, dose-dependent transcriptional alterations were also observed in the totally 33 genes analyzed. Significant alterations occurred even at environmental relevant levels of 7 ng/L P4. Different patterns were observed for these transcriptional alterations, of which, the nfil3 family displayed most significant changes. Furthermore, we demonstrate the importance of sampling time for the determination and interpretation of gene expression data, and put forward recommendations for sampling strategies to avoid false interpretations. Our results suggest that photo-transduction signals and circadian rhythm are potential targets for progestins. Further studies are required to assess alterations on the protein level, on physiology and behavior, as well as on implications in mammals. PMID:26899944

  2. Diffusion in narrow domains and application to phototransduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reingruber, Jürgen; Holcman, David

    2009-03-01

    The mean time for a Brownian particle to find a small target inside a narrow domain is a key parameter for many chemical reactions occurring in cellular microstructures. Although current estimations are given for a large class of domains, they cannot be used for narrow domains often encountered in cellular biology, such as the synaptic cleft, narrow compartments in the outer segment of vertebrate photoreceptors, or neuron-glia contact. We compute here the mean time for a Brownian particle to hit a small target placed on the surface of a narrow cylinder. We then use this result to estimate the rate constant of cyclic-GMP (cGMP) hydrolysis by the activated enzyme phosphodiesterase (PDE) in the narrow microdomains that build up the outer segment of a rod photoreceptor. By controlling the cGMP concentration, PDE activity is at the basis of the early photoresponse chemical reaction cascade. Our approach allows us to compute the cGMP rate constant as a function of biophysical parameters.

  3. Jan Swammerdam's frogs

    PubMed Central

    Sleigh, Charlotte

    2012-01-01

    Having discussed insect metamorphosis at length, Jan Swammerdam's Bybel der Natuure (1679/1737) reached its climax with a substantial description of the generation and muscular activity of frogs. This paper explores the rhetorical role of frogs in Swammerdam's ‘great work’, showing how they were the Archimedean point from which he aimed to reorder all of creation—from insects to humans—within one glorious, God-ordained natural history and philosophy. Swammerdam linked insects to frogs through a demonstration that all underwent epigenesis; and frogs were then linked to humans through a demonstration of their identical muscular activity. The success of Swammerdam's strategy required a theological reconstruction of the frog, traditionally an ungodly creature, such that trustworthy knowledge could be obtained from its body. Perhaps surprisingly, this act of theological cleansing is shown to be somewhat prefigured in the distinctly non-experimental natural history of Edward Topsell (1608). The paper also examines Swammerdam's interactions with the mystic Antoinette Bourignon, and his challenges in reconciling a spirituality of meletetics with a material epistemology in natural philosophy. Differences are revealed between the natural analogies given by Swammerdam in his published and unpublished writings, undermining to a certain extent the triumphal insect–frog–human rhetorical structure of the Bybel.

  4. Rod and cone photoreceptors: molecular basis of the difference in their physiology.

    PubMed

    Kawamura, Satoru; Tachibanaki, Shuji

    2008-08-01

    Vertebrate retinal photoreceptors consist of two types of cells, the rods and cones. Rods are highly light-sensitive but their flash response time course is slow, so that they can detect a single photon in the dark but are not good at detecting an object moving quickly. Cones are less light-sensitive and their flash response time course is fast, so that cones mediate daylight vision and are more suitable to detect a moving object than rods. The phototransduction mechanism was virtually known by the mid 80s, and detailed mechanisms of the generation of a light response are now understood in a highly quantitative manner at the molecular level. However, most of these studies were performed in rods, but not in cones. Therefore, the mechanisms of low light-sensitivity or fast flash response time course in cones have not been known. The major reason for this slow progress in the study of cone phototransduction was due to the inability of getting a large quantity of purified cones to study them biochemically. We succeeded in its purification using carp retina, and have shown that each step responsible for generation of a light response is less effective in cones and that the reactions responsible for termination of a light response are faster in cones. Based on these findings, we speculated a possible mechanism of evolution of rods that diverged from cones. PMID:18514002

  5. Projection structure of frog rhodopsin in two crystal forms.

    PubMed Central

    Schertler, G F; Hargrave, P A

    1995-01-01

    Rhodopsin is the G protein-coupled receptor that upon light activation triggers the visual transduction cascade. Rod cell outer segment disc membranes were isolated from dark-adapted frog retinas and were extracted with Tween detergents to obtain two-dimensional rhodopsin crystals for electron crystallography. When Tween 80 was used, tubular structures with a p2 lattice (a = 32 A, b = 83 A, gamma = 91 degrees) were formed. The use of a Tween 80/Tween 20 mixture favored the formation of larger p22(1)2(1) lattices (a = 40 A, b = 146 A, gamma = 90 degrees). Micrographs from frozen hydrated frog rhodopsin crystals were processed, and projection structures to 7-A resolution for the p22(1)2(1) form and to 6-A resolution for the p2 form were calculated. The maps of frog rhodopsin in both crystal forms are very similar to the 9-A map obtained previously for bovine rhodopsin and show that the arrangement of the helices is the same. In a tentative topographic model, helices 4, 6, and 7 are nearly perpendicular to the plane of the membrane. In the higher-resolution projection maps of frog rhodopsin, helix 5 looks more tilted than it appeared previously. The quality of the two frog rhodopsin crystals suggests that they would be suitable to obtain a three-dimensional structure in which all helices would be resolved. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 6 PMID:8524807

  6. Interaction of Fixed Number of Photons with Retinal Rod Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phan, Nam Mai; Cheng, Mei Fun; Bessarab, Dmitri A.; Krivitsky, Leonid A.

    2014-05-01

    New tools and approaches of quantum optics offer a unique opportunity to generate light pulses carrying a precise number of photons. Accurate control over the light pulses helps to improve the characterization of photoinduced processes. Here, we study interaction of a specialized light source which provides flashes containing just one photon, with retinal rod cells of Xenopus laevis toads. We provide unambiguous proof of the single-photon sensitivity of rod cells without relying on the statistical modeling. We determine their quantum efficiencies without the use of any precalibrated detectors and obtain the value of (29±4.7)%. Our approach provides the path for future studies and applications of quantum properties of light in phototransduction, vision, and photosynthesis.

  7. Incorporation of squalene into rod outer segments

    SciTech Connect

    Keller, R.K.; Fliesler, S.J. )

    1990-08-15

    We have reported previously that squalene is the major radiolabeled nonsaponifiable lipid product derived from ({sup 3}H)acetate in short term incubations of frog retinas. In the present study, we demonstrate that newly synthesized squalene is incorporated into rod outer segments under similar in vitro conditions. We show further that squalene is an endogenous constituent of frog rod outer segment membranes; its concentration is approximately 9.5 nmol/mumol of phospholipid or about 9% of the level of cholesterol. Pulse-chase experiments with radiolabeled precursors revealed no metabolism of outer segment squalene to sterols in up to 20 h of chase. Taken together with our previous absolute rate studies, these results suggest that most, if not all, of the squalene synthesized by the frog retina is transported to rod outer segments. Synthesis of protein is not required for squalene transport since puromycin had no effect on squalene incorporation into outer segments. Conversely, inhibition of isoprenoid synthesis with mevinolin had no effect on the incorporation of opsin into the outer segment. These latter results support the conclusion that the de novo synthesis and subsequent intracellular trafficking of opsin and isoprenoid lipids destined for the outer segment occur via independent mechanisms.

  8. It's a Frog's Life

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coffey, Audrey L.; Sterling, Donna R.

    2003-01-01

    When a preschool teacher unexpectedly found tadpoles in the school's outdoor baby pool, she recognized an unusual opportunity for her students to study pond life up close. By following the tadpoles' development, students learned about frogs, life cycles, habitats. (Contains 1 resource.)

  9. Biophysical mechanism of transient retinal phototropism in rod photoreceptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Xiaohui; Thapa, Damber; Wang, Benquan; Gai, Shaoyan; Yao, Xincheng

    2016-03-01

    Oblique light stimulation evoked transient retinal phototropism (TRP) has been recently detected in frog and mouse retinas. High resolution microscopy of freshly isolated retinas indicated that the TRP is predominated by rod photoreceptors. Comparative confocal microscopy and optical coherence tomography (OCT) revealed that the TRP predominantly occurred from the photoreceptor outer segment (OS). However, biophysical mechanism of rod OS change is still unknown. In this study, frog retinal slices, which open a cross section of retinal photoreceptor and other functional layers, were used to test the effect of light stimulation on rod OS. Near infrared light microscopy was employed to monitor photoreceptor changes in retinal slices stimulated by a rectangular-shaped visible light flash. Rapid rod OS length change was observed after the stimulation delivery. The magnitude and direction of the rod OS change varied with the position of the rods within the stimulated area. In the center of stimulated region the length of the rod OS shrunk, while in the peripheral region the rod OS tip swung towards center region in the plane perpendicular to the incident stimulus light. Our experimental result and theoretical analysis suggest that the observed TRP may reflect unbalanced disc-shape change due to localized pigment bleaching. Further investigation is required to understand biochemical mechanism of the observed rod OS kinetics. Better study of the TRP may provide a noninvasive biomarker to enable early detection of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and other diseases that are known to produce retinal photoreceptor dysfunctions.

  10. The Na(+)/Ca(2+), K(+) exchanger 2 modulates mammalian cone phototransduction.

    PubMed

    Sakurai, Keisuke; Vinberg, Frans; Wang, Tian; Chen, Jeannie; Kefalov, Vladimir J

    2016-01-01

    Calcium ions (Ca(2+)) modulate the phototransduction cascade of vertebrate cone photoreceptors to tune gain, inactivation, and light adaptation. In darkness, the continuous current entering the cone outer segment through cGMP-gated (CNG) channels is carried in part by Ca(2+), which is then extruded back to the extracellular space. The mechanism of Ca(2+) extrusion from mammalian cones is not understood. The dominant view has been that the cone-specific isoform of the Na(+)/Ca(2+), K(+) exchanger, NCKX2, is responsible for removing Ca(2+) from their outer segments. However, indirect evaluation of cone function in NCKX2-deficient (Nckx2(-/-)) mice by electroretinogram recordings revealed normal photopic b-wave responses. This unexpected result suggested that NCKX2 may not be involved in the Ca(2+) homeostasis of mammalian cones. To address this controversy, we examined the expression of NCKX2 in mouse cones and performed transretinal recordings from Nckx2(-/-) mice to determine the effect of NCKX2 deletion on cone function directly. We found that Nckx2(-/-) cones exhibit compromised phototransduction inactivation, slower response recovery and delayed background adaptation. We conclude that NCKX2 is required for the maintenance of efficient Ca(2+) extrusion from mouse cones. However, surprisingly, Nckx2(-/-) cones adapted normally in steady background light, indicating the existence of additional Ca(2+)-extruding mechanisms in mammalian cones. PMID:27580676

  11. The Na+/Ca2+, K+ exchanger 2 modulates mammalian cone phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Sakurai, Keisuke; Vinberg, Frans; Wang, Tian; Chen, Jeannie; Kefalov, Vladimir J.

    2016-01-01

    Calcium ions (Ca2+) modulate the phototransduction cascade of vertebrate cone photoreceptors to tune gain, inactivation, and light adaptation. In darkness, the continuous current entering the cone outer segment through cGMP-gated (CNG) channels is carried in part by Ca2+, which is then extruded back to the extracellular space. The mechanism of Ca2+ extrusion from mammalian cones is not understood. The dominant view has been that the cone-specific isoform of the Na+/Ca2+, K+ exchanger, NCKX2, is responsible for removing Ca2+ from their outer segments. However, indirect evaluation of cone function in NCKX2-deficient (Nckx2−/−) mice by electroretinogram recordings revealed normal photopic b-wave responses. This unexpected result suggested that NCKX2 may not be involved in the Ca2+ homeostasis of mammalian cones. To address this controversy, we examined the expression of NCKX2 in mouse cones and performed transretinal recordings from Nckx2−/− mice to determine the effect of NCKX2 deletion on cone function directly. We found that Nckx2−/− cones exhibit compromised phototransduction inactivation, slower response recovery and delayed background adaptation. We conclude that NCKX2 is required for the maintenance of efficient Ca2+ extrusion from mouse cones. However, surprisingly, Nckx2−/− cones adapted normally in steady background light, indicating the existence of additional Ca2+-extruding mechanisms in mammalian cones. PMID:27580676

  12. Effective delivery of recombinant proteins to rod photoreceptors via lipid nanovesicles

    SciTech Connect

    Asteriti, Sabrina; Dal Cortivo, Giuditta; Pontelli, Valeria; Cangiano, Lorenzo; Buffelli, Mario; Dell’Orco, Daniele

    2015-06-12

    The potential of liposomes to deliver functional proteins in retinal photoreceptors and modulate their physiological response was investigated by two experimental approaches. First, we treated isolated mouse retinas with liposomes encapsulating either recoverin, an important endogenous protein operating in visual phototransduction, or antibodies against recoverin. We then intravitrally injected in vivo liposomes encapsulating either rhodamin B or recoverin and we investigated the distribution in retina sections by confocal microscopy. The content of liposomes was found to be released in higher amount in the photoreceptor layer than in the other regions of the retina and the functional effects of the release were in line with the current model of phototransduction. Our study sets the basis for quantitative investigations aimed at assessing the potential of intraocular protein delivery via biocompatible nanovesicles, with promising implications for the treatment of retinal diseases affecting the photoreceptor layer. - Highlights: • Recombinant proteins encapsulated in nano-sized liposomes injected intravitreally reach retinal photoreceptors. • The phototransduction cascade in rods is modulated by the liposome content. • Mathematical modeling predicts the alteration of the photoresponses following liposome fusion.

  13. Ultrasonic communication in frogs.

    PubMed

    Feng, Albert S; Narins, Peter M; Xu, Chun-He; Lin, Wen-Yu; Yu, Zu-Lin; Qiu, Qiang; Xu, Zhi-Min; Shen, Jun-Xian

    2006-03-16

    Among vertebrates, only microchiropteran bats, cetaceans and some rodents are known to produce and detect ultrasounds (frequencies greater than 20 kHz) for the purpose of communication and/or echolocation, suggesting that this capacity might be restricted to mammals. Amphibians, reptiles and most birds generally have limited hearing capacity, with the ability to detect and produce sounds below approximately 12 kHz. Here we report evidence of ultrasonic communication in an amphibian, the concave-eared torrent frog (Amolops tormotus) from Huangshan Hot Springs, China. Males of A. tormotus produce diverse bird-like melodic calls with pronounced frequency modulations that often contain spectral energy in the ultrasonic range. To determine whether A. tormotus communicates using ultrasound to avoid masking by the wideband background noise of local fast-flowing streams, or whether the ultrasound is simply a by-product of the sound-production mechanism, we conducted acoustic playback experiments in the frogs' natural habitat. We found that the audible as well as the ultrasonic components of an A. tormotus call can evoke male vocal responses. Electrophysiological recordings from the auditory midbrain confirmed the ultrasonic hearing capacity of these frogs and that of a sympatric species facing similar environmental constraints. This extraordinary upward extension into the ultrasonic range of both the harmonic content of the advertisement calls and the frog's hearing sensitivity is likely to have co-evolved in response to the intense, predominantly low-frequency ambient noise from local streams. Because amphibians are a distinct evolutionary lineage from microchiropterans and cetaceans (which have evolved ultrasonic hearing to minimize congestion in the frequency bands used for sound communication and to increase hunting efficacy in darkness), ultrasonic perception in these animals represents a new example of independent evolution. PMID:16541072

  14. Teams Explore the Whole Frog

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cessna, Clair E.

    1973-01-01

    Describes the content and organization of a laboratory session in which student teams work on the organs, tissues, and parasites of a pithed frog. The procedure maximizes participation by every student, makes possible the fullest use of each frog, and permits a rather broad study in a limited time. (JR)

  15. Mosquito repellents in frog skin

    PubMed Central

    Williams, C.R; Smith, B.P.C; Best, S.M; Tyler, M.J

    2006-01-01

    The search for novel insect repellents has been driven by health concerns over established synthetic compounds such as diethyl-m-toluamide (DEET). Given the diversity of compounds known from frog skin and records of mosquito bite and ectoparasite infestation, the presence of mosquito repellents in frogs seemed plausible. We investigated frog skin secretions to confirm the existence of mosquito repellent properties. Litoria caerulea secretions were assessed for mosquito repellency by topical application on mice. The secretions provided protection against host-seeking Culex annulirostris mosquitoes. Olfactometer tests using aqueous washes of skin secretions from L. caerulea and four other frog species were conducted to determine whether volatile components were responsible for repellency. Volatiles from Litoria rubella and Uperoleia mjobergi secretions were repellent to C. annulirostris, albeit not as repellent as a DEET control. The demonstration of endogenous insect repellents in amphibians is novel, and demonstrates that many aspects of frog chemical ecology remain unexplored. PMID:17148373

  16. CONTROL ROD

    DOEpatents

    Zinn, W.H.; Ross, H.V.

    1958-11-18

    A control rod is described for a nuclear reactor. In certaln reactor designs it becomes desirable to use a control rod having great width but relatively llttle thickness. This patent is addressed to such a need. The neutron absorbing material is inserted in a triangular tube, leaving volds between the circular insert and the corners of the triangular tube. The material is positioned within the tube by the use of dummy spacers to achleve the desired absorption pattern, then the ends of the tubes are sealed with suitable plugs. The tubes may be welded or soldered together to form two flat surfaces of any desired width, and covered with sheetmetal to protect the tubes from damage. This design provides a control member that will not distort under the action of outside forces or be ruptured by gases generated within the jacketed control member.

  17. Landscape resistance to frog movements

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazerolle, M.J.; Desrochers, A.

    2005-01-01

    An animal's capacity to recolonize a patch depends on at least two components: its ability to detect the patch and its ability to reach it. However, the disruption of such processes by anthropic disturbances could explain low animal abundance patterns observed by many investigators in certain landscapes. Through field experiments, we compared the orientation and homing success of northern green frogs (Rana clamitans melanota Rafinesque, 1820) and northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens Schreber, 1782) translocated across disturbed or undisturbed surfaces. We also monitored the path selected by individuals when presented with a choice between a short distance over a disturbed surface and a longer, undisturbed route. Finally, we measured the water loss and behaviour of frogs on substrates resulting from anthropogenic disturbances and a control. When presented with a choice, 72% of the frogs avoided disturbed surfaces. Although able to orient towards the pond of capture when translocated on disturbed surfaces, frogs had a lower probability of homing successfully to the pond than when translocated at a similar distance on an undisturbed surface. Frogs lost the most water on substrates associated with disturbance and in the absence of cover. Our data illustrate that anthropically disturbed areas devoid of cover, such as mined peatlands and agricultural fields, disrupt the ability of frogs to reach habitat patches and are likely explanations to their reduced abundance patterns in such environments. ?? 2005 NRC Canada.

  18. Store-operated channels regulate intracellular calcium in mammalian rods.

    PubMed

    Molnar, Tünde; Barabas, Peter; Birnbaumer, Lutz; Punzo, Claudio; Kefalov, Vladimir; Križaj, David

    2012-08-01

    Exposure to daylight closes cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) and voltage-operated Ca(2+) -permeable channels in mammalian rods. The consequent lowering of the cytosolic calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)), if protracted, can contribute to light-induced damage and apoptosis in these cells. We here report that mouse rods are protected against prolonged lowering of [Ca(2+)](i) by store-operated Ca(2+) entry (SOCE). Ca(2+) stores were depleted in Ca(2+)-free saline supplemented with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) sequestration blocker cyclopiazonic acid. Store depletion elicited [Ca(2+)](i) signals that exceeded baseline [Ca(2+)](i) by 5.9 ± 0.7-fold and were antagonized by an inhibitory cocktail containing 2-APB, SKF 96365 and Gd(3+). Cation influx through SOCE channels was sufficient to elicit a secondary activation of L-type voltage-operated Ca2+ entry. We also found that TRPC1, the type 1 canonical mammalian homologue of the Drosophila photoreceptor TRP channel, is predominantly expressed within the outer nuclear layer of the retina. Rod loss in Pde6b(rdl) (rd1), Chx10/Kip1(-/-rdl) and Elovl4(TG2) dystrophic models was associated with ∼70% reduction in Trpc1 mRNA content whereas Trpc1 mRNA levels in rodless cone-full Nrl(-/-) retinas were decreased by ∼50%. Genetic ablation of TRPC1 channels, however, had no effect on SOCE, the sensitivity of the rod phototransduction cascade or synaptic transmission at rod and cone synapses. Thus, we localized two new mechanisms, SOCE and TRPC1, to mammalian rods and characterized the contribution of SOCE to Ca(2+) homeostasis. By preventing the cytosolic [Ca(2+)](i) from dropping too low under sustained saturating light conditions, these signalling pathways may protect Ca(2+)-dependent mechanisms within the ER and the cytosol without affecting normal rod function. PMID:22674725

  19. Visual transduction in human rod photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Kraft, T W; Schneeweis, D M; Schnapf, J L

    1993-01-01

    1. Photocurrents were recorded with suction electrodes from rod photoreceptors of seven humans. 2. Brief flashes of light evoked transient outward currents of up to 20 pA. With increasing light intensity the peak response amplitude increased along an exponential saturation function. A half-saturating peak response was evoked by approximately sixty-five photoisomerizations. 3. Responses to brief dim flashes rose to a peak in about 200 ms. The waveform was roughly like the impulse response of a series of four to five low-pass filters. 4. The rising phases of the responses to flashes of increasing strength were found to fit with a biochemical model of phototransduction with an 'effective delay time' and 'characteristic time' of about 2 and 800 ms, respectively. 5. Spectral sensitivities were obtained over a wavelength range from 380 to 760 nm. The action spectrum, which peaked at 495 nm, followed the template described for photoreceptors in the macaque retina. Variation between rods in the position of the spectrum on the wavelength axis was small. 6. The scotopic luminosity function derived from human psychophysical experiments was found to agree well with the measured rod action spectrum after adjustments were made for lens absorption and photopigment self-screening in the intact eye. 7. Responses to steps of light rose monotonically to a maintained level, showing little or no relaxation. Nevertheless, the relationship between light intensity and steady-state response amplitude was shallower than that expected from simple response saturation. This is consistent with an adaptation mechanism acting on a rapid time scale. 8. Flash sensitivity fell with increasing intensities of background light according to Weber's law. Sensitivity was reduced twofold by lights evoking about 120 photoisomerizations per second. Background lights decreased the time to peak and the integration time of the flash response by up to 20%. PMID:8229828

  20. Leopard frog and wood frog reproduction in Colorado and Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Corn, Paul Stephen; Livo, Lauren J.

    1989-01-01

    Between 1978 and 1988, we recorded reproductive information from populations of ranid frogs in Colorado and Wyoming. Egg masses from five plains and montane populations of northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) contained 645-6272 eggs (x̄ = 3045, N = 68 egg masses). In two montane populations of wood frogs (Rana sylvatica) numbers of eggs per egg mass varied from 711-1248 (x̄ = 876, N = 15) and probably were equal to total clutch size. Mean hatching success was 90% in egg masses from one R. sylvatica population and ranged from 70% to 99% in R. pipiens egg masses. Rana pipiens egg masses from one location were assigned to three overlapping size distributions, which we believe reflects the underlying age structure of female frogs.

  1. The scotopic and photopic visual sensitivity in the nocturnal tree frog Agalychnis callidryas.

    PubMed

    Liebau, Arne; Eisenberg, Tobias; Esser, Karl-Heinz

    2015-10-01

    The red-eyed tree frog (Agalychnis callidryas) is endemic to the rainforests of Central America. During the night, it hunts for insects in the treetops whereas at daytime, the frogs rest under leaves. In the present study we determined the relative visual sensitivity spectrum of this nocturnal frog species by ERG recordings in both the dark- and light-adapted state. In both the scotopic- and photopic-sensitivity curve, we found only minor individual variations among the tested individuals. The sensitivity maximum of the scotopic curve was determined at 500 nm, which matches the absorption properties of the RH1-visual pigment expressed in the red rods of frogs. The sensitivity maximum of the photopic curve was found at 545 nm which is close to the absorption maximum of the LWS pigment type expressed in most cones of the frog retina. The threshold curves determined by ERG recordings here reveal no unusual features in the sensitivity spectrum of the red-eyed tree frog that could be interpreted as adaptations for its strictly nocturnal life style. PMID:26184717

  2. Passive electrical properties of rod outer segments

    PubMed Central

    Falk, Gertrude; Fatt, P.

    1968-01-01

    1. Measurements on a packed suspension of randomly oriented, dark-adapted frog rods at frequencies of 15 c/s-0·5 Mc/s indicate a behaviour similar to that of other biological materials. 2. Results are analysed on the assumption that the low-frequency limiting resistance is determined by current flowing in the suspending medium and that, of the rods, two thirds are oriented perpendicular to the applied field and one third parallel to it. Those parallel to the field are treated as non-conductors. 3. From the high-frequency limiting resistance the conductivity of the rod interior is calculated to vary linearly with the conductivity of the medium. The slope of the relation of internal to external conductivity is 0·50 with a limiting internal conductivity (at zero external) of 280 μmho/cm. 4. On the assumption that the suspension can be represented as a single-capacitance network, the characteristic frequency of impedance is used to calculate a capacitance for the rod surface of 1·54 μF/cm2. On the assumption of a distribution in properties of the suspension according to the theory of Bruggeman, the capacitance is calculated to have a value of about one half this. 5. At frequencies below 5 kc/s the impedance locus deviates from the curve describing the behaviour at higher frequencies. It is suggested that this may involve conduction in a thin layer extending along the surface of the rod. PMID:5685292

  3. Calcium diffusion coefficient in rod photoreceptor outer segments.

    PubMed Central

    Nakatani, Kei; Chen, Chunhe; Koutalos, Yiannis

    2002-01-01

    Calcium (Ca(2+)) modulates several of the enzymatic pathways that mediate phototransduction in the outer segments of vertebrate rod photoreceptors. Ca(2+) enters the rod outer segment through cationic channels kept open by cyclic GMP (cGMP) and is pumped out by a Na(+)/Ca(2+),K(+) exchanger. Light initiates a biochemical cascade, which leads to closure of the cGMP-gated channels, and a concomitant decline in the concentration of Ca(2+). This decline mediates the recovery from stimulation by light and underlies the adaptation of the cell to background light. The speed with which the decline in the Ca(2+) concentration propagates through the rod outer segment depends on the Ca(2+) diffusion coefficient. We have used the fluorescent Ca(2+) indicator fluo-3 and confocal microscopy to measure the profile of the Ca(2+) concentration after stimulation of the rod photoreceptor by light. From these measurements, we have obtained a value of 15 +/- 1 microm(2)s(-1) for the radial Ca(2+) diffusion coefficient. This value is consistent with the effect of a low-affinity, immobile buffer reported to be present in the rod outer segment (L.Lagnado, L. Cervetto, and P.A. McNaughton, 1992, J. Physiol. 455:111-142) and with a buffering capacity of approximately 20 for rods in darkness(S. Nikonov, N. Engheta, and E.N. Pugh, Jr., 1998, J. Gen. Physiol. 111:7-37). This value suggests that diffusion provides a significant delay for the radial propagation of the decline in the concentration of Ca(2+). Also, because of baffling by the disks, the longitudinal Ca(2+) diffusion coefficient will be in the order of 2 microm(2)s(-1), which is much smaller than the longitudinal cGMP diffusion coefficient (30-60 microm(2)s(-1); ). Therefore, the longitudinal decline of Ca(2+) lags behind the longitudinal spread of excitation by cGMP. PMID:11806915

  4. Light adaptation and the rising phase of the flash photocurrent of salamander retinal rods.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, G J

    1995-01-01

    1. Both theory and analysis of photocurrents in retinal rods show that phosphodiesterase activity after a flash rises initially as a delayed ramp. 2. The effect of light adaptation on the flash-induced rise in phosphodiesterase activity deduced from photocurrent responses was investigated. 3. Background adaptation reduces the deduced rate of rise of phosphodiesterase activity. The effect is most prominent for bright backgrounds and moderate flashes. There is little reduction for bright flashes, even in bright backgrounds. There is no effect for weak backgrounds. 4. Light adaptation after bleaching visual pigment produces a reduction in the deduced rise of phosphodiesterase activity for all flashes. For bright flashes, the reduction is explained by the reduction in quantum catch. For moderate flashes, there is an extra reduction, similar to the reduction produced by the equivalent background. 5. The results provide support for the idea that a reduction in the amplification step of phototransduction functions as part of the mechanism of light adaptation in rods. The dependence on flash intensity of the background-induced reduction in phosphodiesterase activation could imply a feedback mechanism on the activation steps of phototransduction. PMID:8558475

  5. To Be or Not to Be...a Frog: The Frog Prince and Shifting Paradigms.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crane, Lisa Marie

    1997-01-01

    Discusses three modern variations of the classic "Frog Prince" folk tale: "Pondlarker" (Fred Gwynne); "The Frog Prince Continued" (Jon Scieszka); and "The Prince of the Pond" (Donna Jo Napoli). Notes that these variants create a world in which frogs can have values, wisdom, and emotion, and in which frogs can influence the ways of humanity. (RS)

  6. A Comparison of V-Frog[C] to Physical Frog Dissection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lalley, James P.; Piotrowski, Phillip S.; Battaglia, Barbara; Brophy, Keith; Chugh, Kevin

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to examine and compare the effectiveness of virtual frog dissection using V-Frog[C] and physical frog dissection on learning, retention, and affect. Subjects were secondary students enrolled in year-long life science classes in a suburban high school (N=102). Virtual dissections were done with V-Frog[C], a…

  7. Light responses and light adaptation in rat retinal rods at different temperatures

    PubMed Central

    Nymark, S; Heikkinen, H; Haldin, C; Donner, K; Koskelainen, A

    2005-01-01

    Rod responses to brief pulses of light were recorded as electroretinogram (ERG) mass potentials across isolated, aspartate-superfused rat retinas at different temperatures and intensities of steady background light. The objective was to clarify to what extent differences in sensitivity, response kinetics and light adaptation between mammalian and amphibian rods can be explained by temperature and outer-segment size without assuming functional differences in the phototransduction molecules. Corresponding information for amphibian rods from the literature was supplemented by new recordings from toad retina. All light intensities were expressed as photoisomerizations per rod (Rh*). In the rat retina, an estimated 34% of incident photons at the wavelength of peak sensitivity caused isomerizations in rods, as the (hexagonally packed) outer segments measured 1.7 μm × 22 μm and had specific absorbance of 0.016 μm−1 on average. Fractional sensitivity (S) in darkness increased with cooling in a similar manner in rat and toad rods, but the rat function as a whole was displaced to a ca 0.7 log unit higher sensitivity level. This difference can be fully explained by the smaller dimensions of rat rod outer segments, since the same rate of phosphodiesterase (PDE) activation by activated rhodopsin will produce a faster drop in cGMP concentration, hence a larger response in rat than in toad. In the range 15–25°C, the waveform and absolute time scale of dark-adapted dim-flash photoresponses at any given temperature were similar in rat and toad, although the overall temperature dependence of the time to peak (tp) was somewhat steeper in rat (Q10≈ 4 versus 2–3). Light adaptation was similar in rat and amphibian rods when measured at the same temperature. The mean background intensity that depressed S by 1 log unit at 12°C was in the range 20–50 Rh* s−1 in both, compared with ca 4500 Rh* s−1 in rat rods at 36°C. We conclude that it is not necessary to assume major

  8. The Classroom Animal: The Leopard Frog.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Science and Children, 1985

    1985-01-01

    Describes the natural history of the leopard frog and factors which make it appropriate for short-term study in the classroom. Information on the frog's habits, life cycle, housing, care, and health is included. (DH)

  9. Spatiotemporal cGMP Dynamics in Living Mouse Rods

    PubMed Central

    Gross, Owen P.; Pugh, Edward N.; Burns, Marie E.

    2012-01-01

    Signaling of single photons in rod photoreceptors decreases the concentration of the second messenger, cyclic GMP (cGMP), causing closure of cGMP-sensitive channels located in the plasma membrane. Whether the spatiotemporal profiles of the fall in cGMP are narrow and deep, or broad and shallow, has important consequences for the amplification and the fidelity of signaling. The factors that determine the cGMP profiles include the diffusion coefficient for cGMP, the spontaneous rate of cGMP hydrolysis, and the rate of cGMP synthesis, which is powerfully regulated by calcium feedback mechanisms. Here, using suction electrodes to record light-dependent changes in cGMP-activated current in living mouse rods lacking calcium feedback, we have determined the rate constant of spontaneous cGMP hydrolysis and the longitudinal cGMP diffusion coefficient. These measurements result in a fully constrained spatiotemporal model of phototransduction, which we used to determine the effect of feedback to cGMP synthesis in spatially constricting the fall of cGMP during the single-photon response of normal rods. We find that the spatiotemporal cGMP profiles during the single-photon response are optimized for maximal amplification and preservation of signal linearity, effectively operating within an axial signaling domain of ∼2 μm. PMID:22768933

  10. The Function of Guanylate Cyclase 1 and Guanylate Cyclase 2 in Rod and Cone Photoreceptors*S

    PubMed Central

    Baehr, Wolfgang; Karan, Sukanya; Maeda, Tadao; Luo, Dong-Gen; Li, Sha; Darin Bronson, J.; Watt, Carl B.; Yau, King-Wai; Frederick, Jeanne M.; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2007-01-01

    Retinal guanylate cyclases 1 and 2 (GC1 and GC2) are responsible for synthesis of cyclic GMP in rods and cones, but their individual contributions to phototransduction are unknown. We report here that the deletion of both GC1 and GC2 rendered rod and cone photoreceptors nonfunctional and unstable. In the rod outer segments of GC double knock-out mice, guanylate cyclase-activating proteins 1 and 2, and cyclic GMP phosphodiesterase were undetectable, although rhodopsin and transducin α-subunit were mostly unaffected. Outer segment membranes of GC1−/− and GC double knock-out cones were destabilized and devoid of cone transducin (α- and γ-subunits), cone phosphodiesterase, and G protein-coupled receptor kinase 1, whereas cone pigments were present at reduced levels. Real time reverse transcription-PCR analyses demonstrated normal RNA transcript levels for the down-regulated proteins, indicating that down-regulation is posttranslational. We interpret these results to demonstrate an intrinsic requirement of GCs for stability and/or transport of a set of membrane-associated phototransduction proteins. PMID:17255100

  11. 49 CFR 213.137 - Frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Frogs. 213.137 Section 213.137 Transportation... TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.137 Frogs. (a) The flangeway depth measured from a plane across the wheel-bearing area of a frog on Class 1 track shall not be less than 13/8 inches,...

  12. 49 CFR 213.137 - Frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Frogs. 213.137 Section 213.137 Transportation... TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.137 Frogs. (a) The flangeway depth measured from a plane across the wheel-bearing area of a frog on Class 1 track shall not be less than 13/8 inches,...

  13. 49 CFR 213.137 - Frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Frogs. 213.137 Section 213.137 Transportation... TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.137 Frogs. (a) The flangeway depth measured from a plane across the wheel-bearing area of a frog on Class 1 track shall not be less than 13/8 inches,...

  14. 49 CFR 213.137 - Frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Frogs. 213.137 Section 213.137 Transportation... TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.137 Frogs. (a) The flangeway depth measured from a plane across the wheel-bearing area of a frog on Class 1 track shall not be less than 13/8 inches,...

  15. 49 CFR 213.137 - Frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Frogs. 213.137 Section 213.137 Transportation... TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.137 Frogs. (a) The flangeway depth measured from a plane across the wheel-bearing area of a frog on Class 1 track shall not be less than 13/8 inches,...

  16. What's the Difference between Frogs and Toads?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Herrick

    2004-01-01

    The difference between frogs and toads can be determined scientifically but is based in the historic use of the terms frog and toad. These are Old English words for the common frog, "Rana temporaria," and the common toad, "Bufo bufo," both inhabitants of the British Isles. In the process of describing a new anuran species, scientists refer to it…

  17. Spargana infection of frogs in Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Mastura, A B; Ambu, S; Hasnah, O; Rosli, R

    1996-03-01

    Frogs caught from two States (Selangor and Langkawi) in Malaysia were examined for spargana of Spirometra sp. Infected frogs usually show no marks of infection but some had swelling and bleeding at the infection site. The size and weight of the infected frogs did not correlate with the infection status. The infection status in relation to human health is discussed. PMID:9031400

  18. Transcriptome analysis and RNA interference of cockroach phototransduction indicate three opsins and suggest a major role for TRPL channels

    PubMed Central

    French, Andrew S.; Meisner, Shannon; Liu, Hongxia; Weckström, Matti; Torkkeli, Päivi H.

    2015-01-01

    Our current understanding of insect phototransduction is based on a small number of species, but insects occupy many different visual environments. We created the retinal transcriptome of a nocturnal insect, the cockroach, Periplaneta americana to identify proteins involved in the earliest stages of compound eye phototransduction, and test the hypothesis that different visual environments are reflected in different molecular contributions to function. We assembled five novel mRNAs: two green opsins, one UV opsin, and one each TRP and TRPL ion channel homologs. One green opsin mRNA (pGO1) was 100–1000 times more abundant than the other opsins (pGO2 and pUVO), while pTRPL mRNA was 10 times more abundant than pTRP, estimated by transcriptome analysis or quantitative PCR (qPCR). Electroretinograms were used to record photoreceptor responses. Gene-specific in vivo RNA interference (RNAi) was achieved by injecting long (596–708 bp) double-stranded RNA into head hemolymph, and verified by qPCR. RNAi of the most abundant green opsin reduced both green opsins by more than 97% without affecting UV opsin, and gave a maximal reduction of 75% in ERG amplitude 7 days after injection that persisted for at least 19 days. RNAi of pTRP and pTRPL genes each specifically reduced the corresponding mRNA by 90%. Electroretinogram (ERG) reduction by pTRPL RNAi was slower than for opsin, reaching 75% attenuation by 21 days, without recovery at 29 days. pTRP RNAi attenuated ERG much less; only 30% after 21 days. Combined pTRP plus pTRPL RNAi gave only weak evidence of any cooperative interactions. We conclude that silencing retinal genes by in vivo RNAi using long dsRNA is effective, that visible light transduction in Periplaneta is dominated by pGO1, and that pTRPL plays a major role in cockroach phototransduction. PMID:26257659

  19. Speed and sensitivity of phototransduction in Drosophila depend on degree of saturation of membrane phospholipids.

    PubMed

    Randall, Alex S; Liu, Che-Hsiung; Chu, Brian; Zhang, Qifeng; Dongre, Sidharta A; Juusola, Mikko; Franze, Kristian; Wakelam, Michael J O; Hardie, Roger C

    2015-02-11

    Drosophila phototransduction is mediated via a G-protein-coupled PLC cascade. Recent evidence, including the demonstration that light evokes rapid contractions of the photoreceptors, suggested that the light-sensitive channels (TRP and TRPL) may be mechanically gated, together with protons released by PLC-mediated PIP2 hydrolysis. If mechanical gating is involved we predicted that the response to light should be influenced by altering the physical properties of the membrane. To achieve this, we used diet to manipulate the degree of saturation of membrane phospholipids. In flies reared on a yeast diet, lacking polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), mass spectrometry showed that the proportion of polyunsaturated phospholipids was sevenfold reduced (from 38 to ∼5%) but rescued by adding a single species of PUFA (linolenic or linoleic acid) to the diet. Photoreceptors from yeast-reared flies showed a 2- to 3-fold increase in latency and time to peak of the light response, without affecting quantum bump waveform. In the absence of Ca(2+) influx or in trp mutants expressing only TRPL channels, sensitivity to light was reduced up to ∼10-fold by the yeast diet, and essentially abolished in hypomorphic G-protein mutants (Gαq). PLC activity appeared little affected by the yeast diet; however, light-induced contractions measured by atomic force microscopy or the activation of ectopic mechanosensitive gramicidin channels were also slowed ∼2-fold. The results are consistent with mechanosensitive gating and provide a striking example of how dietary fatty acids can profoundly influence sensory performance in a classical G-protein-coupled signaling cascade. PMID:25673862

  20. Speed and Sensitivity of Phototransduction in Drosophila Depend on Degree of Saturation of Membrane Phospholipids

    PubMed Central

    Randall, Alex S.; Liu, Che-Hsiung; Chu, Brian; Zhang, Qifeng; Dongre, Sidharta A.; Juusola, Mikko; Franze, Kristian; Wakelam, Michael J.O.

    2015-01-01

    Drosophila phototransduction is mediated via a G-protein-coupled PLC cascade. Recent evidence, including the demonstration that light evokes rapid contractions of the photoreceptors, suggested that the light-sensitive channels (TRP and TRPL) may be mechanically gated, together with protons released by PLC-mediated PIP2 hydrolysis. If mechanical gating is involved we predicted that the response to light should be influenced by altering the physical properties of the membrane. To achieve this, we used diet to manipulate the degree of saturation of membrane phospholipids. In flies reared on a yeast diet, lacking polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), mass spectrometry showed that the proportion of polyunsaturated phospholipids was sevenfold reduced (from 38 to ∼5%) but rescued by adding a single species of PUFA (linolenic or linoleic acid) to the diet. Photoreceptors from yeast-reared flies showed a 2- to 3-fold increase in latency and time to peak of the light response, without affecting quantum bump waveform. In the absence of Ca2+ influx or in trp mutants expressing only TRPL channels, sensitivity to light was reduced up to ∼10-fold by the yeast diet, and essentially abolished in hypomorphic G-protein mutants (Gαq). PLC activity appeared little affected by the yeast diet; however, light-induced contractions measured by atomic force microscopy or the activation of ectopic mechanosensitive gramicidin channels were also slowed ∼2-fold. The results are consistent with mechanosensitive gating and provide a striking example of how dietary fatty acids can profoundly influence sensory performance in a classical G-protein-coupled signaling cascade. PMID:25673862

  1. FROG: Time-series analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allan, Alasdair

    2014-06-01

    FROG performs time series analysis and display. It provides a simple user interface for astronomers wanting to do time-domain astrophysics but still offers the powerful features found in packages such as PERIOD (ascl:1406.005). FROG includes a number of tools for manipulation of time series. Among other things, the user can combine individual time series, detrend series (multiple methods) and perform basic arithmetic functions. The data can also be exported directly into the TOPCAT (ascl:1101.010) application for further manipulation if needed.

  2. Rod examination gauge

    SciTech Connect

    Bacvinskas, W.S.; Bayer, J.E.; Davis, W.W.; Fodor, G.; Kikta, T.J.; Matchett, R.L.; Nilsen, R.J.; Wilczynski, R.

    1991-12-31

    The present invention is directed to a semi-automatic rod examination gauge for performing a large number of exacting measurements on radioactive fuel rods. The rod examination gauge performs various measurements underwater with remote controlled machinery of high reliability. The rod examination gauge includes instruments and a closed circuit television camera for measuring fuel rod length, free hanging bow measurement, diameter measurement, oxide thickness measurement, cladding defect examination, rod ovality measurement, wear mark depth and volume measurement, as well as visual examination. A control system is provided including a programmable logic controller and a computer for providing a programmed sequence of operations for the rod examination and collection of data.

  3. FUEL ROD ASSEMBLY

    DOEpatents

    Hutter, E.

    1959-09-01

    A cluster of nuclear fuel rods aod a tubular casing through which a coolant flows in heat-change contact with the ruel rods are described. The casting is of trefoil section and carries the fuel rods, each of which has two fin engaging the serrated fins of the other two fuel rods, whereby the fuel rods are held in the casing and are interlocked against relative longitudinal movement.

  4. Eye-independent, light-activated chromatophore expansion (LACE) and expression of phototransduction genes in the skin of Octopus bimaculoides

    PubMed Central

    Ramirez, M. Desmond; Oakley, Todd H.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Cephalopods are renowned for changing the color and pattern of their skin for both camouflage and communication. Yet, we do not fully understand how cephalopods control the pigmented chromatophore organs in their skin and change their body pattern. Although these changes primarily rely on eyesight, we found that light causes chromatophores to expand in excised pieces of Octopus bimaculoides skin. We call this behavior light-activated chromatophore expansion (or LACE). To uncover how octopus skin senses light, we used antibodies against r-opsin phototransduction proteins to identify sensory neurons that express r-opsin in the skin. We hypothesized that octopus LACE relies on the same r-opsin phototransduction cascade found in octopus eyes. By creating an action spectrum for the latency to LACE, we found that LACE occurred most quickly in response to blue light. We fit our action spectrum data to a standard opsin curve template and estimated the λmax of LACE to be 480 nm. Consistent with our hypothesis, the maximum sensitivity of the light sensors underlying LACE closely matches the known spectral sensitivity of opsin from octopus eyes. LACE in isolated preparations suggests that octopus skin is intrinsically light sensitive and that this dispersed light sense might contribute to their unique and novel patterning abilities. Finally, our data suggest that a common molecular mechanism for light detection in eyes may have been co-opted for light sensing in octopus skin and then used for LACE. PMID:25994633

  5. Eye-independent, light-activated chromatophore expansion (LACE) and expression of phototransduction genes in the skin of Octopus bimaculoides.

    PubMed

    Ramirez, M Desmond; Oakley, Todd H

    2015-05-15

    Cephalopods are renowned for changing the color and pattern of their skin for both camouflage and communication. Yet, we do not fully understand how cephalopods control the pigmented chromatophore organs in their skin and change their body pattern. Although these changes primarily rely on eyesight, we found that light causes chromatophores to expand in excised pieces of Octopus bimaculoides skin. We call this behavior light-activated chromatophore expansion (or LACE). To uncover how octopus skin senses light, we used antibodies against r-opsin phototransduction proteins to identify sensory neurons that express r-opsin in the skin. We hypothesized that octopus LACE relies on the same r-opsin phototransduction cascade found in octopus eyes. By creating an action spectrum for the latency to LACE, we found that LACE occurred most quickly in response to blue light. We fit our action spectrum data to a standard opsin curve template and estimated the λmax of LACE to be 480 nm. Consistent with our hypothesis, the maximum sensitivity of the light sensors underlying LACE closely matches the known spectral sensitivity of opsin from octopus eyes. LACE in isolated preparations suggests that octopus skin is intrinsically light sensitive and that this dispersed light sense might contribute to their unique and novel patterning abilities. Finally, our data suggest that a common molecular mechanism for light detection in eyes may have been co-opted for light sensing in octopus skin and then used for LACE. PMID:25994633

  6. FROG - Fingerprinting Genomic Variation Ontology.

    PubMed

    Abinaya, E; Narang, Pankaj; Bhardwaj, Anshu

    2015-01-01

    Genetic variations play a crucial role in differential phenotypic outcomes. Given the complexity in establishing this correlation and the enormous data available today, it is imperative to design machine-readable, efficient methods to store, label, search and analyze this data. A semantic approach, FROG: "FingeRprinting Ontology of Genomic variations" is implemented to label variation data, based on its location, function and interactions. FROG has six levels to describe the variation annotation, namely, chromosome, DNA, RNA, protein, variations and interactions. Each level is a conceptual aggregation of logically connected attributes each of which comprises of various properties for the variant. For example, in chromosome level, one of the attributes is location of variation and which has two properties, allosomes or autosomes. Another attribute is variation kind which has four properties, namely, indel, deletion, insertion, substitution. Likewise, there are 48 attributes and 278 properties to capture the variation annotation across six levels. Each property is then assigned a bit score which in turn leads to generation of a binary fingerprint based on the combination of these properties (mostly taken from existing variation ontologies). FROG is a novel and unique method designed for the purpose of labeling the entire variation data generated till date for efficient storage, search and analysis. A web-based platform is designed as a test case for users to navigate sample datasets and generate fingerprints. The platform is available at http://ab-openlab.csir.res.in/frog. PMID:26244889

  7. CARE AND FEEDING OF FROGS

    SciTech Connect

    Pan, Margaret; Chiang, Eugene

    2012-01-15

    'Propellers' are features in Saturn's A ring associated with moonlets that open partial gaps. They exhibit non-Keplerian motion (Tiscareno et al.); the longitude residuals of the best-observed propeller, 'Bleriot', appear consistent with a sinusoid of period {approx}4 years. Pan and Chiang proposed that propeller moonlets librate in 'frog resonances' with co-orbiting ring material. By analogy with the restricted three-body problem, they treated the co-orbital material as stationary in the rotating frame and neglected non-co-orbital material. Here we use simple numerical experiments to extend the frog model, including feedback due to the gap's motion, and drag associated with the Lindblad disk torques that cause Type I migration. Because the moonlet creates the gap, we expect the gap centroid to track the moonlet, but only after a time delay t{sub delay}, the time for a ring particle to travel from conjunction with the moonlet to the end of the gap. We find that frog librations can persist only if t{sub delay} exceeds the frog libration period P{sub lib}, and if damping from Lindblad torques balances driving from co-orbital torques. If t{sub delay} << Pl{sub ib}, then the libration amplitude damps to zero. In the case of Bleriot, the frog resonance model can reproduce the observed libration period P{sub lib} {approx_equal} 4 yr. However, our simple feedback prescription suggests that Bleriot's t{sub delay} {approx} 0.01P{sub lib}, which is inconsistent with the observed libration amplitude of 260 km. We urge more accurate treatments of feedback to test the assumptions of our toy models.

  8. Genomic evidence for rod monochromacy in sloths and armadillos suggests early subterranean history for Xenarthra.

    PubMed

    Emerling, Christopher A; Springer, Mark S

    2015-02-01

    Rod monochromacy is a rare condition in vertebrates characterized by the absence of cone photoreceptor cells. The resulting phenotype is colourblindness and low acuity vision in dim-light and blindness in bright-light conditions. Early reports of xenarthrans (armadillos, sloths and anteaters) suggest that they are rod monochromats, but this has not been tested with genomic data. We searched the genomes of Dasypus novemcinctus (nine-banded armadillo), Choloepus hoffmanni (Hoffmann's two-toed sloth) and Mylodon darwinii (extinct ground sloth) for retinal photoreceptor genes and examined them for inactivating mutations. We performed PCR and Sanger sequencing on cone phototransduction genes of 10 additional xenarthrans to test for shared inactivating mutations and estimated the timing of inactivation for photoreceptor pseudogenes. We concluded that a stem xenarthran became an long-wavelength sensitive-cone monochromat following a missense mutation at a critical residue in SWS1, and a stem cingulate (armadillos, glyptodonts and pampatheres) and stem pilosan (sloths and anteaters) independently acquired rod monochromacy early in their evolutionary history following the inactivation of LWS and PDE6C, respectively. We hypothesize that rod monochromacy in armadillos and pilosans evolved as an adaptation to a subterranean habitat in the early history of Xenarthra. The presence of rod monochromacy has major implications for understanding xenarthran behavioural ecology and evolution. PMID:25540280

  9. Genomic evidence for rod monochromacy in sloths and armadillos suggests early subterranean history for Xenarthra

    PubMed Central

    Emerling, Christopher A.; Springer, Mark S.

    2015-01-01

    Rod monochromacy is a rare condition in vertebrates characterized by the absence of cone photoreceptor cells. The resulting phenotype is colourblindness and low acuity vision in dim-light and blindness in bright-light conditions. Early reports of xenarthrans (armadillos, sloths and anteaters) suggest that they are rod monochromats, but this has not been tested with genomic data. We searched the genomes of Dasypus novemcinctus (nine-banded armadillo), Choloepus hoffmanni (Hoffmann's two-toed sloth) and Mylodon darwinii (extinct ground sloth) for retinal photoreceptor genes and examined them for inactivating mutations. We performed PCR and Sanger sequencing on cone phototransduction genes of 10 additional xenarthrans to test for shared inactivating mutations and estimated the timing of inactivation for photoreceptor pseudogenes. We concluded that a stem xenarthran became an long-wavelength sensitive-cone monochromat following a missense mutation at a critical residue in SWS1, and a stem cingulate (armadillos, glyptodonts and pampatheres) and stem pilosan (sloths and anteaters) independently acquired rod monochromacy early in their evolutionary history following the inactivation of LWS and PDE6C, respectively. We hypothesize that rod monochromacy in armadillos and pilosans evolved as an adaptation to a subterranean habitat in the early history of Xenarthra. The presence of rod monochromacy has major implications for understanding xenarthran behavioural ecology and evolution. PMID:25540280

  10. Speed, sensitivity, and stability of the light response in rod and cone photoreceptors: Facts and models

    PubMed Central

    Korenbrot, Juan I.

    2012-01-01

    The light responses of rod and cone photoreceptors in the vertebrate retina are quantitatively different, yet extremely stable and reproducible because of the extraordinary regulation of the cascade of enzymatic reactions that link photon absorption and visual pigment excitation to the gating of cGMP-gated ion channels in the outer segment plasma membrane. While the molecular scheme of the phototransduction pathway is essentially the same in rods and cones, the enzymes and protein regulators that constitute the pathway are distinct. These enzymes and regulators can differ in the quantitative features of their functions or in concentration if their functions are similar or both can be true. The molecular identity and distinct function of the molecules of the transduction cascade in rods and cones are summarized. The functional significance of these molecular differences is examined with a mathematical model of the signal-transducing enzymatic cascade. Constrained by available electrophysiological, biochemical and biophysical data, the model simulates photocurrents that match well the electrical photoresponses measured in both rods and cones. Using simulation computed with the mathematical model, the time course of light-dependent changes in enzymatic activities and second messenger concentrations in non-mammalian rods and cones are compared side by side. PMID:22658984

  11. Phosphorylation of bovine rod photoreceptor cyclic GMP phosphodiesterase.

    PubMed Central

    Udovichenko, I P; Cunnick, J; Gonzales, K; Takemoto, D J

    1993-01-01

    The cyclic GMP phosphodiesterase (PDE) of retinal rods plays a key role in phototransduction and consists of two catalytic subunits (PDE alpha and PDE beta) and two identical inhibitory subunits (PDE gamma). Here we report that PDE alpha and PDE gamma are phosphorylated by protein kinase(s) C (PKC) from brain and rod outer segments (ROS). These same two types of PKC also phosphorylate PDE alpha in trypsin-activated PDE (without PDE gamma). In contrast, cyclic-AMP-dependent protein kinase catalytic subunit phosphorylates both PDE alpha and PDE beta, but not PDE gamma. This kinase does not phosphorylate trypsin-activated PDE. The synthetic peptides AKVISNLLGPREAAV (PDE alpha 30-44) and KQRQTRQFKSKPPKK (PDE gamma 31-45) inhibited phosphorylation of PDE by PKC from ROS. These data suggest that sites (at least one for each subunit) for phosphorylation of PDE by PKC are localized in these corresponding regions of PDE alpha and PDE gamma. Isoenzyme-specific PKC antibodies against peptides unique to the alpha, beta, gamma, delta, epsilon and zeta isoforms of protein kinase C were used to show that a major form of PKC in ROS is PKC alpha. However, other minor forms were also present. Images Figure 1 Figure 4 Figure 6 Figure 7 PMID:8216238

  12. Control rod drive

    SciTech Connect

    Hawke, Basil C.

    1986-01-01

    A control rod drive uses gravitational forces to insert one or more control rods upwardly into a reactor core from beneath the reactor core under emergency conditions. The preferred control rod drive includes a vertically movable weight and a mechanism operatively associating the weight with the control rod so that downward movement of the weight is translated into upward movement of the control rod. The preferred control rod drive further includes an electric motor for driving the control rods under normal conditions, an electrically actuated clutch which automatically disengages the motor during a power failure and a decelerator for bringing the control rod to a controlled stop when it is inserted under emergency conditions into a reactor core.

  13. Piston rod seal

    DOEpatents

    Lindskoug, Stefan

    1984-01-01

    In a piston rod seal of the type comprising a gland through which the piston rod is passed the piston is provided with a sleeve surrounding the piston rod and extending axially so as to axially partly overlap the gland when the piston is in its bottom dead center position.

  14. Post-illumination pupil response after blue light: Reliability of optimized melanopsin-based phototransduction assessment.

    PubMed

    van der Meijden, Wisse P; te Lindert, Bart H W; Bijlenga, Denise; Coppens, Joris E; Gómez-Herrero, Germán; Bruijel, Jessica; Kooij, J J Sandra; Cajochen, Christian; Bourgin, Patrice; Van Someren, Eus J W

    2015-10-01

    ± 3.6 yr) we examined the potential confounding effects of dark adaptation, time of the day (morning vs. afternoon), body posture (upright vs. supine position), and 24-h environmental light history on the PIPR assessment. Mixed effect regression models were used to analyze these possible confounders. A supine position caused larger PIPR-mm (β = 0.29 mm, SE = 0.10, p = 0.01) and PIPR-% (β = 4.34%, SE = 1.69, p = 0.02), which was due to an increase in baseline dark pupil diameter; this finding is of relevance for studies requiring a supine posture, as in functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging, constant routine protocols, and bed-ridden patients. There were no effects of dark adaptation, time of day, and light history. In conclusion, the presented method provides a reliable and robust assessment of the PIPR to allow for studies on individual differences in melanopsin-based phototransduction and effects of interventions. PMID:26209783

  15. In Situ Microspectrophotometric Studies on the Pigments of Single Retinal Rods

    PubMed Central

    Liebman, Paul A.

    1962-01-01

    Three spectral entities have been observed in single intact frog rod outer segments at 506 mμ, 480 mμ and 380 mμ. It is likely that the peak of 506 mμ was somewhat altered by bleaching reactions and originated at about 510 mμ. This is identified with the 502 mμ frog rhodopsin of digitonin extracts. Spectra in polarized light have the same maximum, identifying the dichroism of rods with rhodopsin. The dichroic ratio is around 6, giving the outer segment an axial density of 0.09/5μ or 0.9 OD total, with a pigment concentration of 2 to 3 mM. The dichroism data are used to compute the angle separating the rhodopsin molecular absorption vectors in rods from perfect restriction to a plane. This angle is 16° or 23° depending on which of two assumptions one chooses for the type of molecular ordering. The spectral peaks at 480 mμ and 380 mμ are thought to correspond respectively to metarhodopsin and retinene. Disappearance of the former is accompanied by accumulation of the latter. This reaction seems to occur more slowly in the intact outer segment than the corresponding reaction in solution. Spread of bleaching spectra from illuminated to dark areas of the same rod did not occur over distances of 2 μ or greater. Spectra were similar from rod to rod and from point to point on the same rod showing that frog rods are spectrally homogeneous both individually and collectively. PMID:14465191

  16. Functional and Molecular Characterization of Rod-like Cells from Retinal Stem Cells Derived from the Adult Ciliary Epithelium

    PubMed Central

    Demontis, Gian Carlo; Aruta, Claudia; Comitato, Antonella; De Marzo, Anna; Marigo, Valeria

    2012-01-01

    In vitro generation of photoreceptors from stem cells is of great interest for the development of regenerative medicine approaches for patients affected by retinal degeneration and for high throughput drug screens for these diseases. In this study, we show unprecedented high percentages of rod-fated cells from retinal stem cells of the adult ciliary epithelium. Molecular characterization of rod-like cells demonstrates that they lose ciliary epithelial characteristics but acquire photoreceptor features. Rod maturation was evaluated at two levels: gene expression and electrophysiological functionality. Here we present a strong correlation between phototransduction protein expression and functionality of the cells in vitro. We demonstrate that in vitro generated rod-like cells express cGMP-gated channels that are gated by endogenous cGMP. We also identified voltage-gated channels necessary for rod maturation and viability. This level of analysis for the first time provides evidence that adult retinal stem cells can generate highly homogeneous rod-fated cells. PMID:22432014

  17. CONTROL ROD DRIVE

    DOEpatents

    Chapellier, R.A.; Rogers, I.

    1961-06-27

    Accurate and controlled drive for the control rod is from an electric motor. A hydraulic arrangement is provided to balance a piston against which a control rod is urged by the application of fluid pressure. The electric motor drive of the control rod for normal operation is made through the aforementioned piston. In the event scramming is required, the fluid pressure urging the control rod against the piston is relieved and an opposite fluid pressure is applied. The lack of mechanical connection between the electric motor and control rod facilitates the scramming operation.

  18. CRUCIFORM CONTROL ROD JOINT

    DOEpatents

    Thorp, A.G. II

    1962-08-01

    An invention is described which relates to nuclear reactor control rod components and more particularly to a joint between cruciform control rod members and cruciform control rod follower members. In one embodiment this invention provides interfitting crossed arms at adjacent ends of a control rod and its follower in abutting relation. This holds the members against relative opposite longitudinal movement while a compression member keys the arms against relative opposite rotation around a common axis. Means are also provided for centering the control rod and its follower on a common axis and for selectively releasing the control rod from its follower for the insertion of a replacement of the control rod and reuse of the follower. (AEC)

  19. The Ups and Downs of Frogs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greene, Janice Schnake; Tamme, Tina

    2001-01-01

    Presents a science activity in which students simulate increases and decreases in frog populations to get a better understanding of different environmental issues affecting animal populations. Includes simulations for both natural frog populations as well as populations affected by human activities. (YDS)

  20. Semi-automated identification of leopard frogs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Petrovska-Delacrétaz, Dijana; Edwards, Aaron; Chiasson, John; Chollet, Gérard; Pilliod, David S.

    2014-01-01

    Principal component analysis is used to implement a semi-automatic recognition system to identify recaptured northern leopard frogs (Lithobates pipiens). Results of both open set and closed set experiments are given. The presented algorithm is shown to provide accurate identification of 209 individual leopard frogs from a total set of 1386 images.

  1. Physiological Properties of Rod Photoreceptor Cells in Green-sensitive Cone Pigment Knock-in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Sakurai, Keisuke; Onishi, Akishi; Imai, Hiroo; Chisaka, Osamu; Ueda, Yoshiki; Usukura, Jiro; Nakatani, Kei; Shichida, Yoshinori

    2007-01-01

    Rod and cone photoreceptor cells that are responsible for scotopic and photopic vision, respectively, exhibit photoresponses different from each other and contain similar phototransduction proteins with distinctive molecular properties. To investigate the contribution of the different molecular properties of visual pigments to the responses of the photoreceptor cells, we have generated knock-in mice in which rod visual pigment (rhodopsin) was replaced with mouse green-sensitive cone visual pigment (mouse green). The mouse green was successfully transported to the rod outer segments, though the expression of mouse green in homozygous retina was ∼11% of rhodopsin in wild-type retina. Single-cell recordings of wild-type and homozygous rods suggested that the flash sensitivity and the single-photon responses from mouse green were three to fourfold lower than those from rhodopsin after correction for the differences in cell volume and levels of several signal transduction proteins. Subsequent measurements using heterozygous rods expressing both mouse green and rhodopsin E122Q mutant, where these pigments in the same rod cells can be selectively irradiated due to their distinctive absorption maxima, clearly showed that the photoresponse of mouse green was threefold lower than that of rhodopsin. Noise analysis indicated that the rate of thermal activations of mouse green was 1.7 × 10−7 s−1, about 860-fold higher than that of rhodopsin. The increase in thermal activation of mouse green relative to that of rhodopsin results in only 4% reduction of rod photosensitivity for bright lights, but would instead be expected to severely affect the visual threshold under dim-light conditions. Therefore, the abilities of rhodopsin to generate a large single photon response and to retain high thermal stability in darkness are factors that have been necessary for the evolution of scotopic vision. PMID:17591985

  2. Functional Optical Coherence Tomography Enables In Vivo Physiological Assessment of Retinal Rod and Cone Photoreceptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qiuxiang; Lu, Rongwen; Wang, Benquan; Messinger, Jeffrey D.; Curcio, Christine A.; Yao, Xincheng

    2015-04-01

    Transient intrinsic optical signal (IOS) changes have been observed in retinal photoreceptors, suggesting a unique biomarker for eye disease detection. However, clinical deployment of IOS imaging is challenging due to unclear IOS sources and limited signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs). Here, by developing high spatiotemporal resolution optical coherence tomography (OCT) and applying an adaptive algorithm for IOS processing, we were able to record robust IOSs from single-pass measurements. Transient IOSs, which might reflect an early stage of light phototransduction, are consistently observed in the photoreceptor outer segment almost immediately (<4 ms) after retinal stimulation. Comparative studies of dark- and light-adapted retinas have demonstrated the feasibility of functional OCT mapping of rod and cone photoreceptors, promising a new method for early disease detection and improved treatment of diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and other eye diseases that can cause photoreceptor damage.

  3. CONTROL ROD DRIVE

    DOEpatents

    Chapellier, R.A.

    1960-05-24

    BS>A drive mechanism was invented for the control rod of a nuclear reactor. Power is provided by an electric motor and an outside source of fluid pressure is utilized in conjunction with the fluid pressure within the reactor to balance the loadings on the motor. The force exerted on the drive mechanism in the direction of scramming the rod is derived from the reactor fluid pressure so that failure of the outside pressure source will cause prompt scramming of the rod.

  4. Pull rod assembly

    DOEpatents

    Cioletti, O.C.

    1988-04-21

    A pull rod assembly comprising a pull rod having three peripheral grooves, a piston device including an adaptor ring and a seal ring, said piston device being mounted on the pull rod by a split ring retainer situated in one groove and extending into an interior groove in the adaptor and a resilient split ring retained in another groove and positioned to engage the piston device and to retain the seal on its adaptor.

  5. FUEL ROD CLUSTERS

    DOEpatents

    Schultz, A.B.

    1959-08-01

    A cluster of nuclear fuel rods and a tubular casing therefor through which a coolant flows in heat-exchange contact with the fuel rods is described. The fuel rcds are held in the casing by virtue of the compressive force exerted between longitudinal ribs of the fuel rcds and internal ribs of the casing or the internal surfaces thereof.

  6. Distinct Contributions of Rod, Cone, and Melanopsin Photoreceptors to Encoding Irradiance

    PubMed Central

    Lall, Gurprit S.; Revell, Victoria L.; Momiji, Hiroshi; Al Enezi, Jazi; Altimus, Cara M.; Güler, Ali D.; Aguilar, Carlos; Cameron, Morven A.; Allender, Susan; Hankins, Mark W.; Lucas, Robert J.

    2010-01-01

    Summary Photoreceptive, melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells (mRGCs) encode ambient light (irradiance) for the circadian clock, the pupillomotor system, and other influential behavioral/physiological responses. mRGCs are activated both by their intrinsic phototransduction cascade and by the rods and cones. However, the individual contribution of each photoreceptor class to irradiance responses remains unclear. We address this deficit using mice expressing human red cone opsin, in which rod-, cone-, and melanopsin-dependent responses can be identified by their distinct spectral sensitivity. Our data reveal an unexpectedly important role for rods. These photoreceptors define circadian responses at very dim “scotopic” light levels but also at irradiances at which pattern vision relies heavily on cones. By contrast, cone input to irradiance responses dissipates following light adaptation to the extent that these receptors make a very limited contribution to circadian and pupillary light responses under these conditions. Our data provide new insight into retinal circuitry upstream of mRGCs and optimal stimuli for eliciting irradiance responses. PMID:20471354

  7. Vigabatrin-induced retinal toxicity is partially mediated by signaling in rod and cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jin; Naumann, Matthew C; Tsai, Yi-Ting; Tosi, Joaquin; Erol, Deniz; Lin, Chyuan-Sheng; Davis, Richard J; Tsang, Stephen H

    2012-01-01

    Vigabatrin (VGB) is a commonly prescribed antiepileptic drug designed to inhibit GABA-transaminase, effectively halting seizures. Unfortunately, VGB treatment is also associated with the highest frequencies of peripheral visual field constriction of any of the antiepileptic drugs and the mechanisms that lead to these visual field defects are uncertain. Recent studies have demonstrated light exposure exacerbates vigabatrin-induced retinal toxicity. We further assessed this relationship by examining the effects of vigabatrin treatment on the retinal structures of mice with genetically altered photoreception. In keeping with previous studies, we detected increased toxicity in mice exposed to continuous light. To study whether cone or rod photoreceptor function was involved in the pathway to toxicity, we tested mice with mutations in the cone-specific Gnat2 or rod-specific Pde6g genes, and found the mutations significantly reduced VGB toxicity. Our results confirm light is a significant enhancer of vigabatrin toxicity and that a portion of this is mediated, directly or indirectly, by phototransduction signaling in rod and cone photoreceptors. PMID:22970106

  8. Rod Photoreceptors Detect Rapid Flicker

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conner, J. D.; MacLeod, Donald I. A.

    1977-01-01

    Rod-isolation techniques show that light-adapted human rods detect flicker frequencies as high as 28 hertz, and that the function relating rod critical flicker frequency to stimulus intensity contains two distinct branches. (MLH)

  9. Obesity epidemic: time to swallow the frog.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Ross E

    2003-11-01

    Mark Twain once said, "If you have to swallow a frog, don't stare at it too long." I believe that members of the healthcare community have been staring at the obesity epidemic for too long. PMID:20086443

  10. Meeting the "Standards" with Vanishing Frogs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davidson, Cindy B.; Matthews, Catherine E.; Patrick, Patricia

    2001-01-01

    Explains methods for introducing high school students to the issue of the declining amphibian population. Plays the game Frogs' Futures following a seminar as an instructional strategy. Describes the game, procedures, and rules. (YDS)

  11. Evidence for multiple phototransduction pathways in a reef-building coral.

    PubMed

    Mason, Benjamin; Schmale, Michael; Gibbs, Patrick; Miller, Margaret W; Wang, Qiang; Levay, Konstantin; Shestopalov, Valery; Slepak, Vladlen Z

    2012-01-01

    Photosensitive behaviors and circadian rhythms are well documented in reef-building corals and their larvae, but the mechanisms responsible for photoreception have not been described in these organisms. Here we report the cloning, immunolocalization, and partial biochemical characterization of three opsins and four G proteins expressed in planulae of the Caribbean elkhorn coral, Acropora palmata. All three opsins (acropsins 1-3) possess conserved seven-pass transmembrane structure, and localize to distinct regions of coral planulae. Acropsin 1 was localized in the larval endoderm, while acropsin 2 was localized in solitary cells of the ectoderm. These rod-like cells displayed a remarkably polarized distribution, concentrated in the aboral end. We also cloned four A. palmata G protein alpha subunits. Three were homologs of vertebrate Gi, Go, and Gq. The fourth is presumably a novel G protein, which displays only 40% identity with the nearest known G protein, and we termed it Gc for "cnidarian". We show that Gc and Gq can be activated by acropsins in a light-dependent manner in vitro. This indicates that at least acropsins 1 and 3 can form functional photoreceptors and potentially may play a role in color preference during settlement, vertical positioning and other light-guided behaviors observed in coral larvae. PMID:23227169

  12. From Virtual Frog to Frog Island: Design Studies in a Development Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dev, Parvati; Walker, Decker F.

    1999-01-01

    Explores the efforts of a curriculum development team who set out to create a virtual frog for use in biology education, but instead, after several design studies, developed a virtual world called Frog Island. Argues for incorporating educational design studies into other educational development projects. (CMK)

  13. Role of Neurotrophin Receptor TrkB in the Maturation of Rod Photoreceptors and Establishment of Synaptic Transmission to the Inner Retina

    PubMed Central

    Rohrer, Baerbel; Korenbrot, Juan I.; LaVail, Matthew M.; Reichardt, Louis F.; Xu, Baoji

    2009-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) acts through TrkB, a receptor with kinase activity, and mitigates light-induced apoptosis in adult mouse rod photoreceptors. To determine whether TrkB signaling is necessary for rod development and function, we examined the retinas of mice lacking all isoforms of the TrkB receptor. Rod migration and differentiation occur in the mutant retina, but proceed at slower rates than in wild-type mice. In postnatal day 16 (P16) mutants, rod outer segment dimensions and rhodopsin content are comparable with those of photoreceptors in P12 wild type (WT). Quantitative analyses of the photoreceptor component in the electroretinogram (ERG) indicate that the gain and kinetics of the rod phototransduction signal in dark-adapted P16 mutant and P12 WT retinas are similar. In contrast to P12 WT, however, the ERG in mutant mice entirely lacks a b-wave, indicating a failure of signal transmission in the retinal rod pathway. In the inner retina of mutant mice, although cells appear anatomically and immunohistochemically normal, they fail to respond to prolonged stroboscopic illumination with the normal expression of c-fos. Absence of the b-wave and failure of c-fos expression, in view of anatomically normal inner retinal cells, suggest that lack of TrkB signaling causes a defect in synaptic signaling between rods and inner retinal cells. Retinal pigment epithelial cells and cells in the inner retina, including Müller, amacrine, and retinal ganglion cells, express the TrkB receptor, but rod photoreceptors do not. Moreover, inner retinal cells respond to exogenous BDNF with c-fos expression and extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation. Thus, interactions of rods with TrkB-expressing cells must be required for normal rod development. PMID:10516311

  14. Control rod driveline and grapple

    DOEpatents

    Germer, John H.

    1987-01-01

    A control rod driveline and grapple is disclosed for placement between a control rod drive and a nuclear reactor control rod containing poison for parasitic neutron absorption required for reactor shutdown. The control rod is provided with an enlarged cylindrical handle which terminates in an upwardly extending rod to provide a grapple point for the driveline. The grapple mechanism includes a tension rod which receives the upwardly extending handle and is provided with a lower annular flange. A plurality of preferably six grapple segments surround and grip the control rod handle. Each grapple rod segment grips the flange on the tension rod at an interior upper annular indentation, bears against the enlarged cylindrical handle at an intermediate annulus and captures the upwardly flaring frustum shaped handle at a lower and complementary female segment. The tension rods and grapple segments are surrounded by and encased within a cylinder. The cylinder terminates immediately and outward extending annulus at the lower portion of the grapple segments. Excursion of the tension rod relative to the encasing cylinder causes rod release at the handle by permitting the grapple segments to pivot outwardly and about the annulus on the tension rod so as to open the lower defined frustum shaped annulus and drop the rod. Relative movement between the tension rod and cylinder can occur either due to electromagnetic release of the tension rod within defined limits of travel or differential thermal expansion as between the tension rod and cylinder as where the reactor exceeds design thermal limits.

  15. TERATOGENESIS, TOXICITY, AND BIOCONCENTRATION IN FROGS EXPOSED TO DIELDRIN

    EPA Science Inventory

    Teratogenesis, acute and chronic toxicity, and bioconcentration were investigated in various like stages of African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis), bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana) and leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) exposed to aqueous dieldrin in static-renewal and continuous-flow tests...

  16. 49 CFR 213.141 - Self-guarded frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Self-guarded frogs. 213.141 Section 213.141..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.141 Self-guarded frogs. (a) The raised guard on a self-guarded frog shall not be worn more than three-eighths of an inch. (b) If...

  17. 49 CFR 213.141 - Self-guarded frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Self-guarded frogs. 213.141 Section 213.141..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.141 Self-guarded frogs. (a) The raised guard on a self-guarded frog shall not be worn more than three-eighths of an inch. (b) If...

  18. 49 CFR 213.141 - Self-guarded frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Self-guarded frogs. 213.141 Section 213.141..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.141 Self-guarded frogs. (a) The raised guard on a self-guarded frog shall not be worn more than three-eighths of an inch. (b) If...

  19. 49 CFR 213.141 - Self-guarded frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Self-guarded frogs. 213.141 Section 213.141..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.141 Self-guarded frogs. (a) The raised guard on a self-guarded frog shall not be worn more than three-eighths of an inch. (b) If...

  20. 49 CFR 213.141 - Self-guarded frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Self-guarded frogs. 213.141 Section 213.141..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.141 Self-guarded frogs. (a) The raised guard on a self-guarded frog shall not be worn more than three-eighths of an inch. (b) If...

  1. 49 CFR 213.139 - Spring rail frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Spring rail frogs. 213.139 Section 213.139..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.139 Spring rail frogs. (a) The... wing rail shall be solidly tamped and fully and tightly bolted. (c) Each frog with a bolt hole...

  2. Hands-on Science. How Do Polliwogs Become Frogs?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kepler, Lynne

    1993-01-01

    Describes a miniscience unit on frogs for elementary grades that teaches students about how frogs develop from tadpoles and how frogs need water during their entire life cycle. Students learn such skills as observation, collecting, and recording data. Provides addresses for ordering resources for teachers and students. (SM)

  3. Frog Swarms: Earthquake Precursors or False Alarms?

    PubMed Central

    Grant, Rachel A.; Conlan, Hilary

    2013-01-01

    Simple Summary Media reports linking unusual animal behaviour with earthquakes can potentially create false alarms and unnecessary anxiety among people that live in earthquake risk zones. Recently large frog swarms in China and elsewhere have been reported as earthquake precursors in the media. By examining international media reports of frog swarms since 1850 in comparison to earthquake data, it was concluded that frog swarms are naturally occurring dispersal behaviour of juveniles and are not associated with earthquakes. However, the media in seismic risk areas may be more likely to report frog swarms, and more likely to disseminate reports on frog swarms after earthquakes have occurred, leading to an apparent link between frog swarms and earthquakes. Abstract In short-term earthquake risk forecasting, the avoidance of false alarms is of utmost importance to preclude the possibility of unnecessary panic among populations in seismic hazard areas. Unusual animal behaviour prior to earthquakes has been reported for millennia but has rarely been scientifically documented. Recently large migrations or unusual behaviour of amphibians have been linked to large earthquakes, and media reports of large frog and toad migrations in areas of high seismic risk such as Greece and China have led to fears of a subsequent large earthquake. However, at certain times of year large migrations are part of the normal behavioural repertoire of amphibians. News reports of “frog swarms” from 1850 to the present day were examined for evidence that this behaviour is a precursor to large earthquakes. It was found that only two of 28 reported frog swarms preceded large earthquakes (Sichuan province, China in 2008 and 2010). All of the reported mass migrations of amphibians occurred in late spring, summer and autumn and appeared to relate to small juvenile anurans (frogs and toads). It was concluded that most reported “frog swarms” are actually normal behaviour, probably caused by

  4. The Propeller and the Frog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Margaret; Chiang, Eugene

    2010-10-01

    "Propellers" in planetary rings are disturbances in ring material excited by moonlets that open only partial gaps. We describe a new type of co-orbital resonance that can explain the observed non-Keplerian motions of propellers. The resonance is between the moonlet underlying the propeller and co-orbiting ring particles downstream of the moonlet where the gap closes. The moonlet librates within the gap about an equilibrium point established by co-orbiting material and stabilized by the Coriolis force. In the limit of small libration amplitude, the libration period scales linearly with the gap azimuthal width and inversely as the square root of the co-orbital mass. The new resonance recalls but is distinct from conventional horseshoe and tadpole orbits; we call it the "frog" resonance, after the relevant term in equine hoof anatomy. For a ring surface density and gap geometry appropriate for the propeller Blériot in Saturn's A ring, our theory predicts a libration period of ~4 years, similar to the ~3.7 year period over which Blériot's orbital longitude is observed to vary. These librations should be subtracted from the longitude data before any inferences about moonlet migration are made.

  5. THE PROPELLER AND THE FROG

    SciTech Connect

    Pan, Margaret; Chiang, Eugene

    2010-10-20

    'Propellers' in planetary rings are disturbances in ring material excited by moonlets that open only partial gaps. We describe a new type of co-orbital resonance that can explain the observed non-Keplerian motions of propellers. The resonance is between the moonlet underlying the propeller and co-orbiting ring particles downstream of the moonlet where the gap closes. The moonlet librates within the gap about an equilibrium point established by co-orbiting material and stabilized by the Coriolis force. In the limit of small libration amplitude, the libration period scales linearly with the gap azimuthal width and inversely as the square root of the co-orbital mass. The new resonance recalls but is distinct from conventional horseshoe and tadpole orbits; we call it the 'frog' resonance, after the relevant term in equine hoof anatomy. For a ring surface density and gap geometry appropriate for the propeller Bleriot in Saturn's A ring, our theory predicts a libration period of {approx}4 years, similar to the {approx}3.7 year period over which Bleriot's orbital longitude is observed to vary. These librations should be subtracted from the longitude data before any inferences about moonlet migration are made.

  6. `Unstirred layers' in frog skin

    PubMed Central

    Dainty, J.; House, C. R.

    1966-01-01

    1. Estimates of the magnitudes of the unstirred regions associated with isolated frog skin in sulphate Ringer's solution have been made under different stirring conditions. 2. The method of investigation was an analysis of the time course of the p.d. transients which occurred when external sodium concentration and internal potassium concentration changes were made in the bathing solution. 3. Making an arbitrary but reasonable assumption about the diffusional coefficient of Na2SO4 in the outer unstirred region, the magnitudes of the outer unstirred layers were found to lie within the ranges 40-60 μ, 30-50 μ and 30-40 μ under stirring conditions of 120, 300 and 500 rev/min, respectively. 4. Making an arbitrary but reasonable assumption about the diffusion coefficient of K2SO4 in the inner unstirred region, the magnitudes of the inner unstirred layers were found to lie within the ranges 150-230 μ, 120-200 μ and 100-170 μ under stirring conditions of 120, 300 and 500 rev/min, respectively. PMID:5937417

  7. Understanding flame rods

    SciTech Connect

    McAuley, J.A. Jr.

    1995-11-01

    The flame rod is probably the least understood method of flame detection. Although it is not recommended for oilfired equipment, it is very common on atmospheric, or {open_quotes}in-shot,{close_quotes} gas burners. It is also possible, although not common, to have an application with a constant gas pilot, monitored by a flame rod, and maintaining an oil main flame. Regardless of the application, chances are that flame rods will be encountered during the course of servicing. The technician today must be versatile and able to work on many different types of equipment. One must understand the basic principles of flame rods, and how to correct potential problems. The purpose of a flame detection system is two-fold: (1) to prove there is no flame when there shouldn`t be one, and (2) to prove there is a flame when there should be one. Flame failure response time is very important. This is the amount of time it takes to realize there is a loss of flame, two to four seconds is typical today. Prior to flame rods, either bi-metal or thermocouple type flame detectors were common. The response time for these detectors was up to three minutes, seldom less than one minute.

  8. Frog skin epithelium: electrolyte transport and chytridiomycosis.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Craig R; Voyles, Jamie; Cook, David I; Dinudom, Anuwat

    2012-03-01

    One unique physiological characteristic of frogs is that their main route for intake of water is across the skin. In these animals, the skin acts in concert with the kidney and urinary bladder to maintain electrolyte homeostasis. Water absorption across the skin is driven by the osmotic gradient that develops as a consequence of solute transport. Our recent study demonstrated that chytridiomycosis, an infection of amphibian skin by the fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, inhibits epithelial Na(+) channels, attenuating Na(+) absorption through the skin. In frogs that become severely affected by this fungus, systemic depletion of Na(+), K(+) and Cl(-) is thought to cause deterioration of cardiac electrical function, leading to cardiac arrest. Here we review the ion transport mechanisms of frog skin, and discuss the effect of chytridiomycosis on these mechanisms. PMID:22182598

  9. Frog skin epithelium: electrolyte transport and chytridiomycosis

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Craig R.; Voyles, Jamie; Cook, David I.; Dinudom, Anuwat

    2012-01-01

    One unique physiological characteristic of frogs is that their main route for intake of water is across the skin. In these animals, the skin acts in concert with the kidney and urinary bladder to maintain electrolyte homeostasis. Water absorption across the skin is driven by the osmotic gradient that develops as a consequence of solute transport. Our recent study demonstrated that chytridiomycosis, an infection of amphibian skin by the fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, inhibits epithelial Na+ channels, attenuating Na+ absorption through the skin. In frogs that become severely affected by this fungus, systemic depletion of Na+, K+ and Cl− is thought to cause deterioration of cardiac electrical function, leading to cardiac arrest. Here we review the ion transport mechanisms of frog skin, and discuss the effect of chytridiomycosis on these mechanisms. PMID:22182598

  10. Intramedullary rodding in osteogenesis imperfecta.

    PubMed

    Mulpuri, K; Joseph, B

    2000-01-01

    The results of intramedullary rodding of long bones of 16 children with osteogenesis imperfecta, over a 10-year period, were analyzed. Sheffield elongating rods or non-elongating rods were used. The frequency of fractures was dramatically reduced after implantation of either type of rod, and the ambulatory status improved in all instances. The results were significantly better after Sheffield rodding with regard to the frequency of complications requiring reoperations and the longevity of the rods. Migration of the rods, encountered frequently, appears to be related to improper placement of the rods in the bone. It seems likely that if care is taken to ensure precise placement of a rod of appropriate size, several of these complications may be avoided. PMID:10739296

  11. Three-dimensional organization of nascent rod outer segment disk membranes

    PubMed Central

    Volland, Stefanie; Hughes, Louise C.; Kong, Christina; Burgess, Barry L.; Linberg, Kenneth A.; Luna, Gabriel; Zhou, Z. Hong; Fisher, Steven K.; Williams, David S.

    2015-01-01

    The vertebrate photoreceptor cell contains an elaborate cilium that includes a stack of phototransductive membrane disks. The disk membranes are continually renewed, but how new disks are formed remains poorly understood. Here we used electron microscope tomography to obtain 3D visualization of the nascent disks of rod photoreceptors in three mammalian species, to gain insight into the process of disk morphogenesis. We observed that nascent disks are invariably continuous with the ciliary plasma membrane, although, owing to partial enclosure, they can appear to be internal in 2D profiles. Tomographic analyses of the basal-most region of the outer segment show changes in shape of the ciliary plasma membrane indicating an invagination, which is likely a first step in disk formation. The invagination flattens to create the proximal surface of an evaginating lamella, as well as membrane protrusions that extend between adjacent lamellae, thereby initiating a disk rim. Immediately distal to this initiation site, lamellae of increasing diameter are evident, indicating growth outward from the cilium. In agreement with a previous model, our data indicate that mature disks are formed once lamellae reach full diameter, and the growth of a rim encloses the space between adjacent surfaces of two lamellae. This study provides 3D data of nascent and mature rod photoreceptor disk membranes at unprecedented z-axis depth and resolution, and provides a basis for addressing fundamental questions, ranging from protein sorting in the photoreceptor cilium to photoreceptor electrophysiology. PMID:26578801

  12. COMPOSITE CONTROL ROD

    DOEpatents

    Rock, H.R.

    1963-12-24

    A composite control rod for use in controlling a nuclear reactor is described. The control rod is of sandwich construction in which finned dowel pins are utilized to hold together sheets of the neutron absorbing material and nonabsorbing structural material thereby eliminating the need for being dependent on the absorbing material for structural support. The dowel pins perform the function of absorbing the forces due to differential thermal expansion, seating further with the fins into the sheets of material and crushing before damage is done either to the absorbing or non-absorbing material. (AEC)

  13. RDGBα, a PtdIns-PtdOH transfer protein, regulates G-protein-coupled PtdIns(4,5)P2 signalling during Drosophila phototransduction

    PubMed Central

    Yadav, Shweta; Garner, Kathryn; Georgiev, Plamen; Li, Michelle; Gomez-Espinosa, Evelyn; Panda, Aniruddha; Mathre, Swarna; Okkenhaug, Hanneke; Cockcroft, Shamshad; Raghu, Padinjat

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Many membrane receptors activate phospholipase C (PLC) during signalling, triggering changes in the levels of several plasma membrane lipids including phosphatidylinositol (PtdIns), phosphatidic acid (PtdOH) and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PtdIns(4,5)P2]. It is widely believed that exchange of lipids between the plasma membrane and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is required to restore lipid homeostasis during PLC signalling, yet the mechanism remains unresolved. RDGBα (hereafter RDGB) is a multi-domain protein with a PtdIns transfer protein (PITP) domain (RDGB-PITPd). We find that, in vitro, the RDGB-PITPd binds and transfers both PtdOH and PtdIns. In Drosophila photoreceptors, which experience high rates of PLC activity, RDGB function is essential for phototransduction. We show that binding of PtdIns to RDGB-PITPd is essential for normal phototransduction; however, this property is insufficient to explain the in vivo function because another Drosophila PITP (encoded by vib) that also binds PtdIns cannot rescue the phenotypes of RDGB deletion. In RDGB mutants, PtdIns(4,5)P2 resynthesis at the plasma membrane following PLC activation is delayed and PtdOH levels elevate. Thus RDGB couples the turnover of both PtdIns and PtdOH, key lipid intermediates during G-protein-coupled PtdIns(4,5)P2 turnover. PMID:26203165

  14. Pseudacris triseriata (western chorus frog) and Rana sylvatica (wood frog) chytridiomycosis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rittman, S.E.; Muths, E.; Green, D.E.

    2003-01-01

    The chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis is a known pathogen of anuran amphibians, and has been correlated with amphibian die-offs worldwide (Daszak et. al. 1999. Emerging Infectious Diseases 5:735-748). In Colorado, B. dendrobatidis has infected Boreal toads (Bufo boreas) (Muths et. al., in review) and has been identified on museum specimens of northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) (Carey et. al. 1999. Develop. Comp. Immunol. 23:459-472). We report the first verified case of chytrid fungus in chorus frogs (Pseudacris triseriata) and wood frogs (Rana sylvatica) in the United States. We collected seven P. triseriata, and two adult and two juvenile R. sylvatica in the Kawuneeche Valley in Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) during June 2001. These animals were submitted to the National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC) as part of an amphibian health evaluation in RMNP. Chorus frogs were shipped in one container. Wood frog adults and juveniles were shipped in two separate containers. Histological examinations of all chorus frogs and 3 of 4 wood frogs were positive for chytrid fungus infection. The fourth (adult) wood frog was too decomposed for meaningful histology. Histological findings consisted of multifocally mild to diffusely severe infections of the epidermis of the ventrum and hindlimb digital skin. Chytrid thalli were confined to the thickened epidermis (hyperkeratosis), were spherical to oval, and occasional thalli contained characteristic discharge pores or zoospores (Green and Kagarise Sherman 1999. J. Herpetol 35:92-103; Fellers et al. 2001. Copeia 2001:945-953). We cannot confirm that all specimens carried the fungus at collection, because infection may have spread from one individual to all other individuals in each container during transport. Further sampling of amphibians in Kawuneeche Valley is warranted to determine the rate of infection and mortality in these populations.

  15. Frog egg growth, experiment S003

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Young, R. S.; Tremor, J. W.

    1971-01-01

    The objective of experiment was to determine the effect of weightlessness on the ability of a fertilized frog egg to divide normally and to differentiate and form a normal embryo. This experiment was first attempted on the Gemini 8 mission and was completed only partially because of the early termination of that mission.

  16. Venomous Frogs Use Heads as Weapons.

    PubMed

    Jared, Carlos; Mailho-Fontana, Pedro Luiz; Antoniazzi, Marta Maria; Mendes, Vanessa Aparecida; Barbaro, Katia Cristina; Rodrigues, Miguel Trefaut; Brodie, Edmund D

    2015-08-17

    Venomous animals have toxins associated with delivery mechanisms that can introduce the toxins into another animal. Although most amphibian species produce or sequester noxious or toxic secretions in the granular glands of the skin to use as antipredator mechanisms, amphibians have been considered poisonous rather than venomous because delivery mechanisms are absent. The skin secretions of two Brazilian hylid frogs (Corythomantis greening and Aparasphenodon brunoi) are more toxic than the venoms of deadly venomous Brazilian pitvipers, genus Bothrops; C. greeningi secretion is 2-fold and A. brunoi secretion is 25-fold as lethal as Bothrops venom. Like the venoms of other animals, the skin secretions of these frogs show proteolytic and fibrinolytic activity and have hyaluronidase, which is nontoxic and nonproteolytic but promotes diffusion of toxins. These frogs have well-developed delivery mechanisms, utilizing bony spines on the skull that pierce the skin in areas with concentrations of skin glands. C. greeningi has greater development of head spines and enlarged skin glands producing a greater volume of secretion, while A. brunoi has more lethal venom. C. greeningi and A. brunoi have highly toxic skin secretions and an associated delivery mechanism; they are therefore venomous. Because even tiny amounts of these secretions introduced into a wound caused by the head spines could be dangerous, these frogs are capable of using their skin toxins as venoms against would-be predators. PMID:26255851

  17. Anchor for Fiberglas Guy Rod

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, A. H.

    1982-01-01

    Solution to problem of anchoring fiberglas guy rods to install nut with threads on outer circumference, followed by aluminum sleeve. Sleeve has opening oval at upper and round at bottom end. End of rod is split so fiberglas wedge can be inserted to form V-shaped end. Spread end of rod fits into tapered hole in sleeve and threaded aluminum coupling is put over rod and sleeve.

  18. Frog Swarms: Earthquake Precursors or False Alarms?

    PubMed

    Grant, Rachel A; Conlan, Hilary

    2013-01-01

    In short-term earthquake risk forecasting, the avoidance of false alarms is of utmost importance to preclude the possibility of unnecessary panic among populations in seismic hazard areas. Unusual animal behaviour prior to earthquakes has been reported for millennia but has rarely been scientifically documented. Recently large migrations or unusual behaviour of amphibians have been linked to large earthquakes, and media reports of large frog and toad migrations in areas of high seismic risk such as Greece and China have led to fears of a subsequent large earthquake. However, at certain times of year large migrations are part of the normal behavioural repertoire of amphibians. News reports of "frog swarms" from 1850 to the present day were examined for evidence that this behaviour is a precursor to large earthquakes. It was found that only two of 28 reported frog swarms preceded large earthquakes (Sichuan province, China in 2008 and 2010). All of the reported mass migrations of amphibians occurred in late spring, summer and autumn and appeared to relate to small juvenile anurans (frogs and toads). It was concluded that most reported "frog swarms" are actually normal behaviour, probably caused by juvenile animals migrating away from their breeding pond, after a fruitful reproductive season. As amphibian populations undergo large fluctuations in numbers from year to year, this phenomenon will not occur on a yearly basis but will depend on successful reproduction, which is related to numerous climatic and geophysical factors. Hence, most large swarms of amphibians, particularly those involving very small frogs and occurring in late spring or summer, are not unusual and should not be considered earthquake precursors. In addition, it is likely that reports of several mass migration of small toads prior to the Great Sichuan Earthquake in 2008 were not linked to the subsequent M = 7.9 event (some occurred at a great distance from the epicentre), and were probably co

  19. REACTOR CONTROL ROD OPERATING SYSTEM

    DOEpatents

    Miller, G.

    1961-12-12

    A nuclear reactor control rod mechanism is designed which mechanically moves the control rods into and out of the core under normal conditions but rapidly forces the control rods into the core by catapultic action in the event of an emergency. (AEC)

  20. Hyperspectral analysis of columbia spotted frog habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shive, J.P.; Pilliod, D.S.; Peterson, C.R.

    2010-01-01

    Wildlife managers increasingly are using remotely sensed imagery to improve habitat delineations and sampling strategies. Advances in remote sensing technology, such as hyperspectral imagery, provide more information than previously was available with multispectral sensors. We evaluated accuracy of high-resolution hyperspectral image classifications to identify wetlands and wetland habitat features important for Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) and compared the results to multispectral image classification and United States Geological Survey topographic maps. The study area spanned 3 lake basins in the Salmon River Mountains, Idaho, USA. Hyperspectral data were collected with an airborne sensor on 30 June 2002 and on 8 July 2006. A 12-year comprehensive ground survey of the study area for Columbia spotted frog reproduction served as validation for image classifications. Hyperspectral image classification accuracy of wetlands was high, with a producer's accuracy of 96 (44 wetlands) correctly classified with the 2002 data and 89 (41 wetlands) correctly classified with the 2006 data. We applied habitat-based rules to delineate breeding habitat from other wetlands, and successfully predicted 74 (14 wetlands) of known breeding wetlands for the Columbia spotted frog. Emergent sedge microhabitat classification showed promise for directly predicting Columbia spotted frog egg mass locations within a wetland by correctly identifying 72 (23 of 32) of known locations. Our study indicates hyperspectral imagery can be an effective tool for mapping spotted frog breeding habitat in the selected mountain basins. We conclude that this technique has potential for improving site selection for inventory and monitoring programs conducted across similar wetland habitat and can be a useful tool for delineating wildlife habitats. ?? 2010 The Wildlife Society.

  1. Hafnium stainless steel absorber rod for control rod

    SciTech Connect

    Charnley, J.E.; Cearley, J.E.; Dixon, R.C.; Izzo, K.R.; Aiello, L.L.

    1989-08-01

    This patent describes an improvement in a control rod having a stainless steel body for enclosing a neutron absorbing poison, the control rod having movement along an axial direction for insertion into and out of a nuclear reactor for controlling a nuclear reaction. The improvement comprising: a piece of hafnium; a piece of stainless steel joined to the hafnium by a thin diffusion interface created by friction welding. The hafnium and the stainless steel oriented serially in the axial direction with the thin diffusion interface disposed normal to the axial direction of the control rod movement; means for confining the hafnium to movement along the axial direction with the control rod; and means for attaching the piece of stainless steel to the remaining portion of the control rod to load the weld therebetween under compression or tension during the control rod movement. Whereby the thin diffusion interface is loaded in tension or compression only upon dynamic movement of the control rod.

  2. Locked-wrap fuel rod

    DOEpatents

    Kaplan, Samuel; Chertock, Alan J.; Punches, James R.

    1977-01-01

    A method for spacing fast reactor fuel rods using a wire wrapper improved by orienting the wire-wrapped fuel rods in a unique manner which introduces desirable performance characteristics not attainable by previous wire-wrapped designs. Use of this method in a liquid metal fast breeder reactor results in: (a) improved mechanical performance, (b) improved rod-to-rod contact, (c) reduced steel volume, and (d) improved thermal-hydraulic performance. The method produces a "locked wrap" design which tends to lock the rods together at each of the wire cluster locations.

  3. SAFETY SYSTEM FOR CONTROL ROD

    DOEpatents

    Paget, J.A.

    1963-05-14

    A structure for monitoring the structural continuity of a control rod foi a neutron reactor is presented. A electric conductor readily breakable under mechanical stress is fastened along the length of the control rod at a plurality of positions and forms a closed circuit with remote electrical components responsive to an open circuit. A portion of the conductor between the control rod and said components is helically wound to allow free and normally unrestricted movement of the segment of conductor secured to the control rod relative to the remote components. Any break in the circuit is indicative of control rod breakage. (AEC)

  4. APPARATUS FOR SHEATHING RODS

    DOEpatents

    Ford, W.K.; Wyatt, M.; Plail, S.

    1961-08-01

    An arrangement is described for sealing a solid body of nuclear fuel, such as a uranium metal rod, into a closelyfitting thin metallic sheath with an internal atmosphere of inert gas. The sheathing process consists of subjecting the sheath, loaded with the nuclear fuel body, to the sequential operations of evacuation, gas-filling, drawing (to entrap inert gas and secure close contact between sheath and body), and sealing. (AEC)

  5. Vortices in vibrated granular rods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neicu, Toni; Kudrolli, Arshad

    2002-03-01

    We report the first experimental observation of vortex patterns in granular rods inside a container that is vibrated vertically . The experiments were carried out with an anodized aluminum circular container which is rigidly attached to an electromagnetic shaker and the patterns are imaged using a high-frame rate digital camera. At low rod numbers and driving amplitudes, the rods are observed to lie horizontally. Above a critical number or packing fraction of rods, moving domains of vertical rods are spontaneously observed to form which coexist with horizontal rods. These small domains of vertical rods coarsen over time to form a few large vortices. The size of the vortices increases with the number of rods. We are able to track the ends of the vertical rods and obtain the velocity fields of the vortices. The mean azimuthal velocity as a function of distance from the center of the vortex is obtained as a function of the packing fraction. We will report the phase diagram of the various patterns observed as function of number of rods and driving amplitude. The mechanism for the formation and motion of the domains of vertical rods will be also discussed.

  6. Safety rod latch inspection

    SciTech Connect

    Leader, D.R.

    1992-02-01

    During an attempt to raise control rods from the 100 K reactor in December, one rod could not be withdrawn. Subsequent investigation revealed that a small button'' in the latch mechanism had broken off of the lock plunger'' and was wedged in a position that prevented rod withdrawal. Concern that this failure may have resulted from corrosion or some other metallurgical problem resulted in a request that SRL examine six typical latch mechanisms from the 100 L reactor by use of radiography and metallography. During the examination of the L-Area latches, a failed latch mechanism from the 100 K reactor was added to the investigation. Fourteen latches that had a history of problems were removed from K-Area and sent to SRL for inclusion in this study the week after the original seven assemblies were examined, bringing the total of latch assemblies discussed in this report to twenty one. Results of the examination of the K-Area latch that initiated this study is not included in this report.

  7. Safety rod latch inspection

    SciTech Connect

    Leader, D.R.

    1992-02-01

    During an attempt to raise control rods from the 100 K reactor in December, one rod could not be withdrawn. Subsequent investigation revealed that a small ``button`` in the latch mechanism had broken off of the ``lock plunger`` and was wedged in a position that prevented rod withdrawal. Concern that this failure may have resulted from corrosion or some other metallurgical problem resulted in a request that SRL examine six typical latch mechanisms from the 100 L reactor by use of radiography and metallography. During the examination of the L-Area latches, a failed latch mechanism from the 100 K reactor was added to the investigation. Fourteen latches that had a history of problems were removed from K-Area and sent to SRL for inclusion in this study the week after the original seven assemblies were examined, bringing the total of latch assemblies discussed in this report to twenty one. Results of the examination of the K-Area latch that initiated this study is not included in this report.

  8. Essential and synergistic roles of RP1 and RP1L1 in rod photoreceptor axoneme and retinitis pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Yamashita, Tetsuji; Liu, Jiewu; Gao, Jiangang; LeNoue, Sean; Wang, Changguan; Kaminoh, Jack; Bowne, Sara J.; Sullivan, Lori S.; Daiger, Stephen P.; Zhang, Kang; Fitzgerald, Malinda E.C.; Kefalov, Vladimir J.; Zuo, Jian

    2009-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa 1 (RP1) is a common inherited retinopathy with variable onset and severity. The RP1 gene encodes a photoreceptor-specific, microtubule-associated ciliary protein containing the doublecortin (DCX) domain. Here we show that another photoreceptor-specific Rp1-like protein (Rp1L1) in mice is also localized to the axoneme of outer segments (OS) and connecting cilia in rod photoreceptors, overlapping with Rp1. Rp1L1−/− mice display scattered OS disorganization, reduced electroretinogram amplitudes, and progressive photoreceptor degeneration, less severe and slower than in Rp1−/− mice. In single rods of Rp1L1−/−, photosensitivity is reduced, similar to that of Rp1−/−. While individual heterozygotes are normal, double heterozygotes of Rp1 and Rp1L1 exhibit abnormal OS morphology and reduced single rod photosensitivity and dark currents. The electroretinogram amplitudes of double heterozygotes are more reduced than those of individual heterozygotes combined. In support, Rp1L1 interacts with Rp1 in transfected cells and in retina pull-down experiments. Interestingly, phototransduction kinetics are normal in single rods and whole retinas of individual or double Rp1 and Rp1L1 mutant mice. Together, Rp1 and Rp1L1 play essential and synergistic roles in affecting photosensitivity and OS morphogenesis of rod photoreceptors. Our findings suggest that mutations in RP1L1 could underlie retinopathy or modify RP1 disease expression in humans. PMID:19657028

  9. Phototransduction Motifs and Variations

    PubMed Central

    Yau, King-Wai; Hardie, Roger C.

    2010-01-01

    Seeing begins in the photoreceptors, where light is absorbed and signaled to the nervous system. Throughout the animal kingdom, photoreceptors are diverse in design and purpose. Nonetheless, phototransduction—the mechanism by which absorbed photons are converted into an electrical response—is highly conserved and based almost exclusively on a single class of photoproteins, the opsins. In this Review, we survey the G protein-coupled signaling cascades downstream from opsins in photoreceptors across vertebrate and invertebrate species, noting their similarities as well as differences. PMID:19837030

  10. Longitudinal diffusion of a polar tracer in the outer segments of rod photoreceptors from different species.

    PubMed

    Wu, Qingqing; Chen, Chunhe; Koutalos, Yiannis

    2006-01-01

    Vertebrate rod photoreceptors are the ultimate light sensors, as they can detect a single photon. In darkness, rods maintain a high concentration of the intracellular messenger cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP), which binds to and keeps open cationic channels on the plasma membrane of the outer segment. Absorption of a photon by the visual pigment of the rod, rhodopsin, initiates a biochemical amplification cascade that leads to a reduction in the concentration of cGMP and closure of the channels, thereby converting the incoming light to an electrical signal. Because the absorption of a photon and the ensuing reactions are localized events, the magnitude of the response of the rod to a single photon depends on the spread of the decrease in the cGMP concentration along the length of the outer segment. The longitudinal diffusion of cGMP depends on the structural parameters of the rod outer segment, specifically the area and the volume available for diffusion. To characterize the effect of rod outer segment cytoarchitecture on diffusion, we have used fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) and examined the mobility of a fluorescent polar tracer, calcein, in the rod outer segments from three species with different outer segment structures: frog (Rana pipiens), mouse (Mus musculus domesticus) and gecko (Gekko gekko). We found that the diffusion coefficient is similar for all three species, in the order of 8-17 microm(2) s(-1), in broad agreement with the predictions by Holcman and Korenbrot (Biophys. J. 2004:86;2566-2582) based on the known cytoarchitecture of rod outer segments. Consequently, the results also support their prediction that the longitudinal spread of light excitation in rods is similar across species. PMID:16906792

  11. Phosphorylation of the Drosophila Transient Receptor Potential Ion Channel Is Regulated by the Phototransduction Cascade and Involves Several Protein Kinases and Phosphatases

    PubMed Central

    Voolstra, Olaf; Bartels, Jonas-Peter; Oberegelsbacher, Claudia; Pfannstiel, Jens; Huber, Armin

    2013-01-01

    Protein phosphorylation plays a cardinal role in regulating cellular processes in eukaryotes. Phosphorylation of proteins is controlled by protein kinases and phosphatases. We previously reported the light-dependent phosphorylation of the Drosophila transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channel at multiple sites. TRP generates the receptor potential upon stimulation of the photoreceptor cell by light. An eye-enriched protein kinase C (eye-PKC) has been implicated in the phosphorylation of TRP by in vitro studies. Other kinases and phosphatases of TRP are elusive. Using phosphospecific antibodies and mass spectrometry, we here show that phosphorylation of most TRP sites depends on the phototransduction cascade and the activity of the TRP ion channel. A candidate screen to identify kinases and phosphatases provided in vivo evidence for an involvement of eye-PKC as well as other kinases and phosphatases in TRP phosphorylation. PMID:24040070

  12. Impairment of extramitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation in mouse rod outer segments by blue light irradiation.

    PubMed

    Calzia, Daniela; Panfoli, Isabella; Heinig, Nora; Schumann, Ulrike; Ader, Marius; Traverso, Carlo Enrico; Funk, Richard H W; Roehlecke, Cora

    2016-06-01

    Exposure to short wavelength light causes increased reactive oxygen intermediates production in the outer retina, particularly in the rod Outer Segments (OS). Consistently, the OS were shown to conduct aerobic ATP production through the ectopic expression of the electron transfer chain complexes I-IV and F1Fo-ATP synthase. These facts prompted us to verify if the oxidative phosphorylation in the OS is implied in the oxidative damage of the blue-light (BL) treated OS, in an organotypic model of mouse retina. Whole mouse eyeball cultures were treated with short wavelength BL (peak at 405 nm, output power 1 mW/cm(2)) for 6 h. Immunogold transmission electron microscopy confirmed the expression of Complex I and F1Fo-ATP synthase in the OS. In situ histochemical assays on unfixed sections showed impairment of respiratory Complexes I and II after BL exposure, both in the OS and IS, utilized as a control. Basal O2 consumption and ATP synthesis were impaired in the OS purified from blue-light irradiated eyeball cultures. Electron transfer capacity between Complex I and II as well as activity of Complexes I and II was decreased in blue-light irradiated purified OS. The severe malfunctioning of the OS aerobic respiratory capacity after 6 h BL treatment may be the consequence of a self-induced damage. BL exposure would cause an initial over-functioning of both the phototransduction and respiratory chain, with reactive oxygen species production. In a self-renewal vicious cycle, membrane and protein oxidative damage, proton leakage and uncoupling, would impair redox chains, perpetuating the damage and causing hypo-metabolism with eventual apoptosis of the rod. Data may shed new light on the rod-driven retinopathies such as Age Related Macular Degeneration, of which blue-light irradiated retina represents a model. PMID:27059514

  13. The role of extensional viscosity in frog tongue projection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noel, Alexis; Wagner, Caroline; McKinley, Gareth; Mendelson, Joe; Hu, David

    2014-11-01

    Frogs and other amphibians capture insects through high-speed tongue projection, some achieving tongue accelerations of over fifty times gravity. In this experimental study, we investigate how a frog's sticky saliva enables high-speed prey capture. At the Atlanta zoo, we used high-speed video to film the trajectory of frog tongues during prey capture. We have also designed and built a portable extensional rheometer; by following the capillary-driven thinning in the diameter of a thread of saliva we characterize the relaxation time and extensional viscosity and so infer the adhesive force between the frog tongue and prey.

  14. The Role of Steady Phosphodiesterase Activity in the Kinetics and Sensitivity of the Light-Adapted Salamander Rod Photoresponse

    PubMed Central

    Nikonov, S.; Lamb, T.D.; Pugh, E.N.

    2000-01-01

    We investigated the kinetics and sensitivity of photocurrent responses of salamander rods, both in darkness and during adaptation to steady backgrounds producing 20–3,000 photoisomerizations per second, using suction pipet recordings. The most intense backgrounds suppressed 80% of the circulating dark current and decreased the flash sensitivity ∼30-fold. To investigate the underlying transduction mechanism, we expressed the responses as a fraction of the steady level of cGMP-activated current recorded in the background. The fractional responses to flashes of any fixed intensity began rising along a common trajectory, regardless of background intensity. We interpret these invariant initial trajectories to indicate that, at these background intensities, light adaptation does not alter the gain of any of the amplifying steps of phototransduction. For subsaturating flashes of fixed intensity, the fractional responses obtained on backgrounds of different intensity were found to “peel off” from their common initial trajectory in a background-dependent manner: the more intense the background, the earlier the time of peeling off. This behavior is consistent with a background-induced reduction in the effective lifetime of at least one of the three major integrating steps in phototransduction; i.e., an acceleration of one or more of the following: (1) the inactivation of activated rhodopsin (R*); (2) the inactivation of activated phosphodiesterase (E*, representing the complex Gα–PDE of phosphodiesterase with the transducin α-subunit); or (3) the hydrolysis of cGMP, with rate constant β. Our measurements show that, over the range of background intensities we used, β increased on average to ∼20 times its dark-adapted value; and our theoretical analysis indicates that this increase in β is the primary mechanism underlying the measured shortening of time-to-peak of the dim-flash response and the decrease in sensitivity of the fractional response. PMID:11099349

  15. Yolk pigments of the Mexican leaf frog.

    PubMed

    Marinetti, G V; Bagnara, J T

    1983-02-25

    Eggs of the Mexican leaf frog contain blue and yellow pigments identified as biliverdin and lutein, respectively. Both pigments are bound to proteins that occur in crystalline form in the yolk platelet. The major blue pigment is biliverdin IX alpha. The eggs vary in color from brilliant blue to pale yellow-green depending on the amount of each pigment. These pigments may provide protective coloration to the eggs. PMID:6681678

  16. Arthropod predation in a dendrobatid poison frog: does frog life stage matter?

    PubMed

    Murray, Erin M; Bolton, Sarah K; Berg, Torsten; Saporito, Ralph A

    2016-06-01

    Frogs in the family Dendrobatidae are well known for their conspicuous colors and variable alkaloid-based chemical defenses. The aposematic coloration in dendrobatid frogs appears to deter predators with color vision, but relatively little is known about how these frogs are protected and their defenses are perceived by non-color vision dominated predators. The neotropical bullet ant Paraponera clavata and the red-legged banana spider Cupiennius coccineus are predators that avoid adults of the dendrobatid Oophaga pumilio, but readily consume non-toxic frogs. Juvenile O. pumilio possess the same warning coloration as adult O. pumilio, but may be more palatable given that they have lower quantities of defensive chemicals. This may provide juvenile O. pumilio protection from color-sighted predators, while leaving them susceptible to predators that use chemoreception. To test this hypothesis, we presented juveniles and adults of both O. pumilio and the non-chemically defended frog Craugastor bransfordii to bullet ants and banana spiders. Both bullet ants and banana spiders preyed upon C. bransfordii significantly more than on O. pumilio. Adult and juvenile C. bransfordii experienced similar predation rates by both predators. The life stage of O. pumilio significantly predicted predation by bullet ants, with juveniles being consumed significantly more often than adults. However, the life stage of O. pumilio did not predict predation by banana spiders, as no adults or juveniles were consumed. Our study provides evidence that bullet ants can detect differences in chemical defenses between juvenile and adult O. pumilio, resulting in differential predation on the more palatable juvenile frogs. The avoidance of both adults and juveniles by C. coccineus suggests the alkaloids in O. pumilio act as an effective chemical deterrent to banana spiders, regardless of quantity. Overall, our results suggest that differences in alkaloid defenses among life stages in O. pumilio

  17. Fiber optic laser rod

    DOEpatents

    Erickson, G.F.

    1988-04-13

    A laser rod is formed from a plurality of optical fibers, each forming an individual laser. Synchronization of the individual fiber lasers is obtained by evanescent wave coupling between adjacent optical fiber cores. The fiber cores are dye-doped and spaced at a distance appropriate for evanescent wave coupling at the wavelength of the selected dye. An interstitial material having an index of refraction lower than that of the fiber core provides the optical isolation for effective lasing action while maintaining the cores at the appropriate coupling distance. 2 figs.

  18. Reactor control rod timing system

    DOEpatents

    Wu, Peter T. K.

    1982-01-01

    A fluid driven jet-edge whistle timing system for control rods of a nuclear reactor for producing real-time detection of the timing of each control rod in its scram operation. An important parameter in reactor safety, particularly for liquid metal fast breeder reactors (LMFBR), is the time deviation between the time the control rod is released and the time the rod actually reaches the down position. The whistle has a nearly pure tone signal with center frequency (above 100 kHz) far above the frequency band in which the energy of the background noise is concentrated. Each control rod can be fitted with a whistle with a different frequency so that there is no ambiguity in differentiating the signal from each control rod.

  19. Making Highly Pure Glass Rods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Naumann, R. J.

    1986-01-01

    Proposed quasi-containerless method for making glass rods or fibers minimizes contact between processing equipment and product. Method allows greater range of product sizes and shapes than achieved in experiments on containerless processing. Molten zone established in polycrystalline rod. Furnace sections separated, and glass rod solidifies between them. Clamp supports solid glass as it grows in length. Pulling clamp rapidly away from melt draws glass fiber. Fiber diameter controlled by adjustment of pulling rate.

  20. Automatic safety rod for reactors

    DOEpatents

    Germer, John H.

    1988-01-01

    An automatic safety rod for a nuclear reactor containing neutron absorbing material and designed to be inserted into a reactor core after a loss-of-core flow. Actuation is based upon either a sudden decrease in core pressure drop or the pressure drop decreases below a predetermined minimum value. The automatic control rod includes a pressure regulating device whereby a controlled decrease in operating pressure due to reduced coolant flow does not cause the rod to drop into the core.

  1. Piston and connecting rod assembly

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brogdon, James William (Inventor); Gill, David Keith (Inventor); Chatten, John K. (Inventor)

    2001-01-01

    A piston and connecting rod assembly includes a piston crown, a piston skirt, a connecting rod, and a bearing insert. The piston skirt is a component separate from the piston crown and is connected to the piston crown to provide a piston body. The bearing insert is a component separate from the piston crown and the piston skirt and is fixedly disposed within the piston body. A bearing surface of a connecting rod contacts the bearing insert to thereby movably associate the connecting rod and the piston body.

  2. 49 CFR 213.139 - Spring rail frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Spring rail frogs. 213.139 Section 213.139..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.139 Spring rail frogs. (a) The outer edge of a wheel tread shall not contact the gage side of a spring wing rail. (b) The toe of...

  3. 49 CFR 213.139 - Spring rail frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Spring rail frogs. 213.139 Section 213.139..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.139 Spring rail frogs. (a) The outer edge of a wheel tread shall not contact the gage side of a spring wing rail. (b) The toe of...

  4. 49 CFR 213.139 - Spring rail frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Spring rail frogs. 213.139 Section 213.139..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.139 Spring rail frogs. (a) The outer edge of a wheel tread shall not contact the gage side of a spring wing rail. (b) The toe of...

  5. 49 CFR 213.139 - Spring rail frogs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Spring rail frogs. 213.139 Section 213.139..., DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.139 Spring rail frogs. (a) The outer edge of a wheel tread shall not contact the gage side of a spring wing rail. (b) The toe of...

  6. Coleman Revisited: School Segregation, Peers, and Frog Ponds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goldsmith, Pat Rubio

    2011-01-01

    Students from minority segregated schools tend to achieve and attain less than similar students from White segregated schools. This study examines whether peer effects can explain this relationship using normative models and frog-pond models. Normative models (where peers become alike) suggest that minority schoolmates are a liability. Frog-pond…

  7. Transplantation of Photoreceptors Derived From Human Müller Glia Restore Rod Function in the P23H Rat

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Megan F.; Eastlake, Karen; Cottrill, Phillippa B.; Becker, Silke; Wiseman, Joseph; Khaw, Peng T.

    2014-01-01

    Müller glia possess stem cell characteristics that have been recognized to be responsible for the regeneration of injured retina in fish and amphibians. Although these cells are present in the adult human eye, they are not known to regenerate human retina in vivo. Human Müller glia with stem cell characteristics (hMSCs) can acquire phenotypic and genotypic characteristics of rod photoreceptors in vitro, suggesting that they may have potential for use in transplantation strategies to treat human photoreceptor degenerations. Much work has been undertaken in rodents using various sources of allogeneic stem cells to restore photoreceptor function, but the effect of human Müller glia-derived photoreceptors in the restoration of rod photoreceptor function has not been investigated. This study aimed to differentiate hMSCs into photoreceptor cells by stimulation with growth and differentiation factors in vitro to upregulate gene and protein expression of CRX, NR2E3, and rhodopsin and various phototransduction markers associated with rod photoreceptor development and function and to examine the effect of subretinal transplantation of these cells into the P23H rat, a model of primary photoreceptor degeneration. Following transplantation, hMSC-derived photoreceptor cells migrated and integrated into the outer nuclear layer of the degenerated retinas and led to significant improvement in rod photoreceptor function as shown by an increase in a-wave amplitude and slope using scotopic flash electroretinography. These observations suggest that hMSCs can be regarded as a cell source for development of cell-replacement therapies to treat human photoreceptor degenerations and may also offer potential for the development of autologous transplantation. PMID:24477073

  8. Tongue adhesion in the horned frog Ceratophrys sp.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleinteich, Thomas; Gorb, Stanislav N.

    2014-06-01

    Frogs are well-known to capture elusive prey with their protrusible and adhesive tongues. However, the adhesive performance of frog tongues and the mechanism of the contact formation with the prey item remain unknown. Here we measured for the first time adhesive forces and tongue contact areas in living individuals of a horned frog (Ceratophrys sp.) against glass. We found that Ceratophrys sp. generates adhesive forces well beyond its own body weight. Surprisingly, we found that the tongues adhered stronger in feeding trials in which the coverage of the tongue contact area with mucus was relatively low. Thus, besides the presence of mucus, other features of the frog tongue (surface profile, material properties) are important to generate sufficient adhesive forces. Overall, the experimental data shows that frog tongues can be best compared to pressure sensitive adhesives (PSAs) that are of common technical use as adhesive tapes or labels.

  9. The need for water quality criteria for frogs.

    PubMed Central

    Boyer, R; Grue, C E

    1995-01-01

    Amphibians are considered reliable indicators of environmental quality. In the western United States, a general decline of frog populations parallels an apparent worldwide decline. The factors thought to be contributing to declines in frog populations include habitat loss, introduction of exotic species, overexploitation, disease, climate change, and decreasing water quality. With respect to water quality, agroecosystems use 80-90% of the water resources in the western United States, frequently resulting in highly eutrophic conditions. Recent investigations suggest that these eutrophic conditions (elevated pH, water temperature, and un-ionized ammonia) may be associated with frog embryo mortality or malformations. However, water quality criteria for frogs and other amphibians do not currently exist. Here, we briefly review data that support the need to develop water quality parameters for frogs in agroecosystems and other habitats. Images Figure 1. Figure 2. Figure 3. Figure 4. A Figure 4. B Figure 5. PMID:7607135

  10. 49 CFR 213.355 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.355... Higher § 213.355 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs... distance between the gage line of a frog to the guard line 1 of its guard rail or guarding face,...

  11. 49 CFR 213.355 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.355... Higher § 213.355 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs... distance between the gage line of a frog to the guard line 1 of its guard rail or guarding face,...

  12. 49 CFR 213.355 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.355... Higher § 213.355 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs... distance between the gage line of a frog to the guard line 1 of its guard rail or guarding face,...

  13. 49 CFR 213.355 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.355... Higher § 213.355 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs... distance between the gage line of a frog to the guard line 1 of its guard rail or guarding face,...

  14. 49 CFR 213.355 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.355... Higher § 213.355 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs... distance between the gage line of a frog to the guard line 1 of its guard rail or guarding face,...

  15. Composite Lightning Rods for Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bryan, Charles F., Jr.

    1986-01-01

    Composite, lightweight sacrificial tip with graphite designed reduces lightning-strike damage to composite parts of aircraft and dissipates harmful electrical energy. Device consists of slender composite rod fabricated from highly-conductive unidirectional reinforcing fibers in matrix material. Rods strategically installed in trailing edges of aircraft wings, tails, winglets, control surfaces, and rearward-most portion of aft fuselage.

  16. Rod Climbing of Suspensions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Youjing; Wang, Xiaorong

    We wish to report an unexpected effect observed for particle suspensions sucked to pass through a vertical pipe. Above a critical concentration, the suspension on the outside of the pipe may climb along the outside wall of the pipe and then display a surprising rod-climbing effect. Our study shows that the phenomenon is influenced mainly by the suspension composition, the pipe dimension and the suction speed. The effects of the pipe materials of different kinds are negligible. Increasing the suction force and the concentration increases the climbing height. Increasing the pipe diameter and wall thickness reduces the climbing effect. This behavior may be relevant to that the suspensions of the type described are all displaying markedly shear-thickening.

  17. Rhodopsin Forms Nanodomains in Rod Outer Segment Disc Membranes of the Cold-Blooded Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Rakshit, Tatini; Senapati, Subhadip; Sinha, Satyabrata; Whited, A M; Park, Paul S-H

    2015-01-01

    Rhodopsin forms nanoscale domains (i.e., nanodomains) in rod outer segment disc membranes from mammalian species. It is unclear whether rhodopsin arranges in a similar manner in amphibian species, which are often used as a model system to investigate the function of rhodopsin and the structure of photoreceptor cells. Moreover, since samples are routinely prepared at low temperatures, it is unclear whether lipid phase separation effects in the membrane promote the observed nanodomain organization of rhodopsin from mammalian species. Rod outer segment disc membranes prepared from the cold-blooded frog Xenopus laevis were investigated by atomic force microscopy to visualize the organization of rhodopsin in the absence of lipid phase separation effects. Atomic force microscopy revealed that rhodopsin nanodomains form similarly as that observed previously in mammalian membranes. Formation of nanodomains in ROS disc membranes is independent of lipid phase separation and conserved among vertebrates. PMID:26492040

  18. Regenerative hyperpolarization in rods.

    PubMed Central

    Werblin, F S

    1975-01-01

    1. The electrical properties of the rods in Necturus maculosus were studied at the cell body and the outer segments in dark and light under current and voltage clamp with a pair of intracellular electrodes separated by about 1 mum. 2. The membrane resistance in the dark was voltage- and time-dependent both for the cell body and the outer segment. Slight depolarizations in the cell body reduced the slope resistance from 60 to 10 M omega with a time constant of about 1 sec. Polarization in either direction, at the outer segment, when greater than about 20 mV, reduced the slope resistance from 60 to 30 M omega. The dark potential in the cell body was typically -30 to -35 m V; at the outer segment it was typically only -10 to -15 mV. 3. The light-elicited voltage response in both the cell body and the outer segment was largest with the membrane near the dark potential level. In both regions, the response was reduced when the membrane was polarized in either direction. 4. Under voltage-clamp conditions, a reversal potential for the light response near + 10 mV was measured at the outer segment. At the cell body no reversal potential for the light response was measured; there the clamping current required during the light response was almost of the same magnitude at all potential levels. 5. When the membrane at the cell body was hyperpolarized in the dark under voltage clamp, a transient outward current, typically about one-half the magnitude of the initial inward clamping current was required to maintain the membrane at the clamped potential level. This outward current transient was associated with a decrease in membrane resistance with similar time course. The transient outward current reversed and became inward when the membrane was clamped to potentials more negative than -80 mV. Thus, the transient outward current appears to involve a transient activation initiated by hyperpolarization. I is regenerative in that it is initiated by hyperpolarization and tends to

  19. Status of rod consolidation, 1988

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, W.J.

    1989-01-01

    It is estimated that the spent fuel storage pools at some domestic light-water reactors will run out of space before 2003, the year that the US Department of Energy currently predicts it will have a repository available. Of the methods being studied to alleviate the problem, rod consolidation is one of the leading candidates for achieving more efficient use of existing space in spent fuel storage pools. Rod consolidation involves mechanically removing all the fuel rods from the fuel assembly hardware (i.e., the structural components) and placing the fuel rods in a close-packed array in a canister without space grids. A typical goal of rod consolidation systems is to insert the fuel rods from two fuel assemblies into a canister that has the same exterior dimensions as one standard fuel assembly (i.e., to achieve a consolidation or compaction ratio of 2:1) and to compact the nonfuel-bearing structural components from those two fuel assemblies by a factor of 10 to 20. This report provides an overview of the current status of rod consolidation in the United States and a small amount of information on related activities in other countries. 85 refs., 36 figs., 5 tabs.

  20. Peatlands and green frogs: A relationship regulated by acidity?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazerolle, M.J.

    2005-01-01

    The effects of site acidification on amphibian populations have been thoroughly addressed in the last decades. However, amphibians in naturally acidic environments, such as peatlands facing pressure from the peat mining industry, have received little attention. Through two field studies and an experiment, I assessed the use of bog habitats by the green frog (Rana clamitans melanota), a species sensitive to various forestry and peat mining disturbances. First, I compared the occurrence and breeding patterns of frogs in bog and upland ponds. I then evaluated frog movements between forest and bog habitats to determine whether they corresponded to breeding or postbreeding movements. Finally, I investigated, through a field experiment, the value of bogs as rehydrating areas for amphibians by offering living Sphagnum moss and two media associated with uplands (i.e., water with pH ca 6.5 and water-saturated soil) to acutely dehydrated frogs. Green frog reproduction at bog ponds was a rare event, and no net movements occurred between forest and bog habitats. However, acutely dehydrated frogs did not avoid Sphagnum. Results show that although green frogs rarely breed in bogs and do not move en masse between forest and bog habitats, they do not avoid bog substrates for rehydrating, despite their acidity. Thus, bogs offer viable summering habitat to amphibians, which highlights the value of these threatened environments in terrestrial amphibian ecology.

  1. The wood frog (Rana sylvatica): a technical conservation assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.; Rittmann, S.; Irwin, J.; Keinath, D.; Scherer, R.

    2005-01-01

    Overall, the wood frog (Rana sylvatica) is ranked G5, secure through most of its range (NatureServe Explorer 2002). However, it is more vulnerable in some states within the USDA Forest Service Region 2: S3 (vulnerable) in Colorado, S2 (imperiled) in Wyoming, and S1 (critically imperiled in South Dakota (NatureServe Explorer 2002); there are no records for wood frogs in Kansas or Nebraska. Primary threats to wood frog populations are habitat fragmentation (loss of area, edge effects, and isolation) and habitat loss due to anthropogenic causes (e.g., wetland draining, grazing) and natural changes as habitat succession occurs. Wood frogs are most conspicuous at breeding sites early in the spring, when snow and ice are often still present at pond margins. They tolerate frezzing and hibernate terrestrially in shallow depressions, under leaf litter, grasses, logs, or rocks (Bagdonas 1968, Bellis 1961a); there are no reports of aquatic hibernation for this species (Licht 1991, Pinder et al. 1992). Wood frogs require semi-permanent and temporary pools of natural origin and adjacent wet meadows, and landscape alterations that shorten the hydroperiod of ponds can result in catastrophic tadpole mortality. Plant communities utilized by wood frogs in the Rocky Mountains are hydric to mesic and include sedge and grass meadows, willow hummocks, aspen groves, lodgepole pine forests, and woodlands with leaf litter and/or herbaceous understory (Maslin 1947, Bellis 1961a, Roberts and Lewin 1979, Haynes and Aird 1981). Wood frogs are likely to disperse into surrounding marsh and woodlands soon after oviposition (Heatwole 1961, Haynes and Aird 1981). In the arly fall, wood frogs begin to seek hibernacula at or just below the ground surface, generally in upland forest habitat (Regosin et al. 2003). Licht (1991) demonstrated shelter-seeking behavior at 1.5 [degrees] C. Once they have concealed themselves for hibernation, wood frogs are very difficult to detecta?|

  2. Amphibian pathogens in Southeast Asian frog trade.

    PubMed

    Gilbert, Martin; Bickford, David; Clark, Leanne; Johnson, Arlyne; Joyner, Priscilla H; Ogg Keatts, Lucy; Khammavong, Kongsy; Nguyễn Văn, Long; Newton, Alisa; Seow, Tiffany P W; Roberton, Scott; Silithammavong, Soubanh; Singhalath, Sinpakhone; Yang, Angela; Seimon, Tracie A

    2012-12-01

    Amphibian trade is known to facilitate the geographic spread of pathogens. Here we assess the health of amphibians traded in Southeast Asia for food or as pets, focusing on Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), ranavirus and general clinical condition. Samples were collected from 2,389 individual animals at 51 sites in Lao PDR, Cambodia, Vietnam and Singapore for Bd screening, and 74 animals in Cambodia and Vietnam for ranavirus screening. Bd was found in one frog (n = 347) in Cambodia and 13 in Singapore (n = 419). No Bd was found in Lao PDR (n = 1,126) or Vietnam (n = 497), and no ranavirus was found in Cambodia (n = 70) or Vietnam (n = 4). Mild to severe dermatological lesions were observed in all East Asian bullfrogs Hoplobatrachus rugolosus (n = 497) sampled in farms in Vietnam. Histologic lesions consistent with sepsis were found within the lesions of three frogs and bacterial sepsis in two (n = 4); one had Gram-negative bacilli and one had acid-fast organisms consistent with mycobacterium sp. These results confirm that Bd is currently rare in amphibian trade in Southeast Asia. The presence of Mycobacterium-associated disease in farmed H. rugolosus is a cause for concern, as it may have public health implications and indicates the need for improved biosecurity in amphibian farming and trade. PMID:23404036

  3. Induction of cytochrome P450-associated monooxygenases in northern leopard frogs, Rana pipiens, by 3,3',4,4',5-pentachlorobiphenyl

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Huang, Y.-W.; Melancon, M.J.; Jung, R.E.; Karasov, W.H.

    1998-01-01

    Northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) were injected intraperitoneally either with a solution of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) 126 in corn oil at a concentration of 0.2, 0.7, 2.3 and 7.8 mg/kg body weight or with corn oil alone. Appropriate assay conditions with hepatic microsomes were determined for four cytochrome P450-associated monooxygenases: ethoxyresorufin-O-dealkylase (EROD), methoxy-ROD (MROD), benzyloxy-ROD (BROD) and pentoxy-ROD (PROD). One week after PCB administration, the specific activities of EROD, MROD, BROD and PROD were not elevated at doses ? 0.7 mg/kg (p > 0.05), but were significantly increased at doses ? 2.3 mg/kg compared to the control groups (p < 0.05). The increased activity of these four enzymes ranged from 3to 6.4fold relative to control levels. The increased activities were maintained for at least four weeks. Due to a lack of induction at low doses of PCB 126, which were still relatively high compared to currentlyknown environmental concentrations, we suspect that EROD, MROD, BROD, and PROD activities are not sensitive biomarkers for coplanar PCB exposure in leopard frogs.

  4. Induction of cytochrome P450-associated monooxygenases in northern leopard frogs, Rana pipiens, by 3,3{prime},4,4{prime},5-pentachlorobiphenyl

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Y.; Jung, R.E.; Karasov, W.H.; Melancon, M.J.

    1998-08-01

    In the past decade, biochemical and physiological characteristics such as hepatic detoxifying system. DNA adducts, thyroid malfunction, and acetylcholinesterase inhibition have been used extensively as biomarkers for contaminant exposure. Northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) were injected intraperitoneally either with a solution of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) 126 m corn oil at a concentration of 0.2, 0.7, 2.3, or 7.8 mg/kg body weight or with corn oil alone. Appropriate assay conditions with hepatic microsomes were determined for four cytochrome P450-associated monooxygenases: ethoxyresorufin-O-dealkylase (EROD), methoxy-ROD (MROD), benzyloxy-ROD (BROD), and pentoxy-ROD (PROD). One week after PCB administration, the specific activities of EROD, MROD, BROD, and PROD were not elevated at doses {le}0.7 mg/kg (p > 0.05) but were significantly increased at doses {ge}2.3 mg/kg compared to the control groups (p < 0.05). The increased activities of these four enzymes were 3 to 6.4 times those in the control groups. The increased activities were maintained for at least 4 weeks. Because of a lack of induction at low doses of PCB 126, which were still relatively high compared to currently known environmental concentration, the authors suspect that EROD, MROD, BROD, and PROD activities are not sensitive biomarkers for coplanar PCB exposure in leopard frogs.

  5. The extracellular compartments of frog skeletal muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Neville, M C; Mathias, R T

    1979-01-01

    1. Detailed studies of solute efflux from frog sartorius muscle and single muscle fibres were carried out in order to characterize a 'special region' (Harris, 1963) in the extracellular space of muscle and determine whether this 'special region' is the sarcoplasmic reticulum. 2. The efflux of radioactive Na, Cl, glusose, 3-O-methylglucose, xylose, glycine, leucine, cycloleucine, Rb, K, inulin (mol. wt. 5000) and dextran (mol. wt. 17,000) from previously loaded muscles was studied. In all cases except dextran the curve had three components, a rapid (A) component which could be equated with efflux from the extracellular space proper, a slow (C) component representing cellular solute and an intermediate (B) component. The distribution space for the B component was 8% of muscle volume in summer frogs and 12% in winter frogs and appeared to be equal for all compounds studied. We tested the hypothesis that the B component originated from the sarcoplasmic reticulum. 3. The C component was missing from the dextran curves. Both dextran and inulin entered the compartment of origin of the B component (compartment B) to the same extent as small molecules. 4. For all compounds studies, the efflux rate constant for the A component could be predicted from the diffusion coefficient. For the B component the efflux rate constant was 6--10 times slower than that for the A component but was still proportional to the diffusion coefficient for the solute in question. 5. When Na and sucrose efflux from single fibres was followed, a B component was usually observed. The average distribution space for this component was small, averaging 1.5% of fibre volume. There was no difference between the average efflux rate constants for Na and sucrose. 6. In an appendix, the constraints placed on the properties of a hypothetical channel between the sarcoplasmic reticulum and the T-system by the linear electrical parameters of frog skeletal muscle are derived. It is shown that the conductance of such

  6. Biosensor, ELISA, and frog embryo teratogenesis assay: Xenopus (FETAX) analysis of water associated with frog malformations in Minnesota

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garber, Eric A. E.; Erb, Judith L.; Downward, James G.; Priuska, Eric M.; Wittliff, James L.; Feng, Wenke; Magner, Joseph; Larsen, Gerald L.

    2001-03-01

    Between 1995 and 1997 over 62% of the counties in Minnesota reported the presence of malformed frogs. While most sites have recently shown a decline in malformed frog populations, one site in northeastern Minnesota with no prior history of containing malformed frogs was recently discovered to contain > 67% malformed Rana pipiens (northern leopard frogs). As part of an effort to study the presence of hormonally active agents in fresh water sources, water samples were collected from lakes in Minnesota containing malformed frogs and analyzed for the presence of hormonally active compounds using a novel evanescent field fluorometric biosensor and the frog embryo teratogenesis assay: Xenopus (FETAX) bioassay. The waveguide based biosensor developed by ThreeFold Sensors (TFS biosensor, Ann Arbor, MI) detects the presence of estrogenic compounds capable of interacting with free human ER-a and by inhibiting binding to an immobilized estrogen. The FETAX bioassay is a developmental assay, which measures teratogenicity, mortality, and inhibition of growth during the first 96 hours of organogenesis and thereby provides a universal screen for endocrine disruptors. TFS biosensor and FETAX screening of the water samples suggest a relationship between estrogenic activity, mineral supplementation, and the occurrence of malformed frogs.

  7. Inhibition of SULT4A1 expression induces up-regulation of phototransduction gene expression in 72-hour postfertilization zebrafish larvae.

    PubMed

    Crittenden, Frank; Thomas, Holly; Ethen, Cheryl M; Wu, Zhengliang L; Chen, Dongquan; Kraft, Timothy W; Parant, John M; Falany, Charles N

    2014-05-01

    Sulfotransferase (SULT) 4A1 is an orphan enzyme that shares distinct structure and sequence similarities with other cytosolic SULTs. SULT4A1 is primarily expressed in neuronal tissue and is also the most conserved SULT, having been identified in every vertebrate investigated to date. Certain haplotypes of the SULT4A1 gene are correlated with higher baseline psychopathology in schizophrenic patients, but no substrate or function for SULT4A1 has yet been identified despite its high level of sequence conservation. In this study, deep RNA sequencing was used to search for alterations in gene expression in 72-hour postfertilization zebrafish larvae following transient SULT4A1 knockdown (KD) utilizing splice blocking morpholino oligonucleotides. This study demonstrates that transient inhibition of SULT4A1 expression in developing zebrafish larvae results in the up-regulation of several genes involved in phototransduction. SULT4A1 KD was verified by immunoblot analysis and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Gene regulation changes identified by deep RNA sequencing were validated by qPCR. This study is the first identification of a cellular process whose regulation appears to be associated with SULT4A1 expression. PMID:24553382

  8. Inhibition of SULT4A1 Expression Induces Up-Regulation of Phototransduction Gene Expression in 72-Hour Postfertilization Zebrafish Larvae

    PubMed Central

    Crittenden, Frank; Thomas, Holly; Ethen, Cheryl M.; Wu, Zhengliang L.; Chen, Dongquan; Kraft, Timothy W.; Parant, John M.

    2014-01-01

    Sulfotransferase (SULT) 4A1 is an orphan enzyme that shares distinct structure and sequence similarities with other cytosolic SULTs. SULT4A1 is primarily expressed in neuronal tissue and is also the most conserved SULT, having been identified in every vertebrate investigated to date. Certain haplotypes of the SULT4A1 gene are correlated with higher baseline psychopathology in schizophrenic patients, but no substrate or function for SULT4A1 has yet been identified despite its high level of sequence conservation. In this study, deep RNA sequencing was used to search for alterations in gene expression in 72-hour postfertilization zebrafish larvae following transient SULT4A1 knockdown (KD) utilizing splice blocking morpholino oligonucleotides. This study demonstrates that transient inhibition of SULT4A1 expression in developing zebrafish larvae results in the up-regulation of several genes involved in phototransduction. SULT4A1 KD was verified by immunoblot analysis and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Gene regulation changes identified by deep RNA sequencing were validated by qPCR. This study is the first identification of a cellular process whose regulation appears to be associated with SULT4A1 expression. PMID:24553382

  9. The Homing Frog: High Homing Performance in a Territorial Dendrobatid Frog Allobates femoralis (Dendrobatidae)

    PubMed Central

    Pašukonis, Andrius; Ringler, Max; Brandl, Hanja B; Mangione, Rosanna; Ringler, Eva; Hödl, Walter; Tregenza, T

    2013-01-01

    Dendrobatidae (dart-poison frogs) exhibit some of the most complex spatial behaviors among amphibians, such as territoriality and tadpole transport from terrestrial clutches to widely distributed deposition sites. In species that exhibit long-term territoriality, high homing performance after tadpole transport can be assumed, but experimental evidence is lacking, and the underlying orientation mechanisms are unknown. We conducted a field translocation experiment to test whether male Allobates femoralis, a dendrobatid frog with paternal extra-territorial tadpole transport, are capable of homing after experimental removal, as well as to quantify homing success and speed. Translocated individuals showed a very high homing success for distances up to 200 m and successfully returned from up to 400 m. We discuss the potential orientation mechanisms involved and selective forces that could have shaped this strong homing ability. PMID:25104869

  10. Hopf solitons and elastic rods

    SciTech Connect

    Harland, Derek; Sutcliffe, Paul; Speight, Martin

    2011-03-15

    Hopf solitons in the Skyrme-Faddeev model are stringlike topological solitons classified by the integer-valued Hopf charge. In this paper we introduce an approximate description of Hopf solitons in terms of elastic rods. The general form of the elastic rod energy is derived from the field theory energy and is found to be an extension of the classical Kirchhoff rod energy. Using a minimal extension of the Kirchhoff energy, it is shown that a simple elastic rod model can reproduce many of the qualitative features of Hopf solitons in the Skyrme-Faddeev model. Features that are captured by the model include the buckling of the charge three solution, the formation of links at charges five and six, and the minimal energy trefoil knot at charge seven.

  11. In Vivo Two-Photon Fluorescence Kinetics of Primate Rods and Cones

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Robin; Schwarz, Christina; Williams, David R.; Palczewska, Grazyna; Palczewski, Krzysztof; Hunter, Jennifer J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The retinoid cycle maintains vision by regenerating bleached visual pigment through metabolic events, the kinetics of which have been difficult to characterize in vivo. Two-photon fluorescence excitation has been used previously to track autofluorescence directly from retinoids and pyridines in the visual cycle in mouse and frog retinas, but the mechanisms of the retinoid cycle are not well understood in primates. Methods We developed a two-photon fluorescence adaptive optics scanning light ophthalmoscope dedicated to in vivo imaging in anesthetized macaques. Using pulsed light at 730 nm, two-photon fluorescence was captured from rods and cones during light and dark adaptation through the eye's pupil. Results The fluorescence from rods and cones increased with light exposure but at different rates. During dark adaptation, autofluorescence declined, with cone autofluorescence decreasing approximately 4 times faster than from rods. Rates of autofluorescence decrease in rods and cones were approximately 4 times faster than their respective rates of photopigment regeneration. Also, subsets of sparsely distributed cones were less fluorescent than their neighbors immediately following bleach at 565 nm and they were comparable with the S cone mosaic in density and distribution. Conclusions Although other molecules could be contributing, we posit that these fluorescence changes are mediated by products of the retinoid cycle. In vivo two-photon ophthalmoscopy provides a way to monitor noninvasively stages of the retinoid cycle that were previously inaccessible in the living primate eye. This can be used to assess objectively photoreceptor function in normal and diseased retinas. PMID:26903225

  12. Nuclear design of Helical Cruciform Fuel rods

    SciTech Connect

    Shirvan, K.; Kazimi, M. S.

    2012-07-01

    In order to increase the power density of current and new light water reactor designs, the Helical Cruciform Fuel (HCF) rods are proposed. The HCF rods are equivalent to a cylindrical rod, with the fuel in a cruciform shaped, twisted axially. The HCF rods increase the surface area to volume ratio and inter-subchannel mixing behavior due to their cruciform and helical shapes, respectively. In a previous study, the HCF rods have shown the potential to up-rate existing PWRs by 50% and BWRs by 25%. However, HCF rods do display different neutronics modeling and performance. The cruciform cross section of HCF rods creates radially asymmetric heat generation and temperature distribution. The nominal HCF rod's beginning of life reactivity is reduced, compared to a cylindrical rod with the same fuel volume, by 500 pcm, due to increase in absorption in cladding. The rotation of these rods accounts for reactivity changes, which depends on the H/HM ratio of the pin cell. The HCF geometry shows large sensitivities to U{sup 235} or gadolinium enrichments compared to a cylindrical geometry. In addition, the gadolinium-containing HCF rods show a stronger effect on neighboring HCF rods than in case of cylindrical rods, depending on the orientation of the HCF rods. The helical geometry of the rods introduces axial shadowing of about 600 pcm, not seen in typical cylindrical rods. (authors)

  13. Games With a Purpose: Frog and the Lily Pads

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sawicki, Timothy

    2005-01-01

    This article describes a game involving poly spots, frog bean bags, and a basket that can be used to assess locomotor activities, e.g., hopping and throwing, while also developing teamwork strategies and mathematical abilities.

  14. Frog tongue surface microstructures: functional and evolutionary patterns

    PubMed Central

    Gorb, Stanislav N

    2016-01-01

    Summary Frogs (Lissamphibia: Anura) use adhesive tongues to capture fast moving, elusive prey. For this, the tongues are moved quickly and adhere instantaneously to various prey surfaces. Recently, the functional morphology of frog tongues was discussed in context of their adhesive performance. It was suggested that the interaction between the tongue surface and the mucus coating is important for generating strong pull-off forces. However, despite the general notions about its importance for a successful contact with the prey, little is known about the surface structure of frog tongues. Previous studies focused almost exclusively on species within the Ranidae and Bufonidae, neglecting the wide diversity of frogs. Here we examined the tongue surface in nine different frog species, comprising eight different taxa, i.e., the Alytidae, Bombinatoridae, Megophryidae, Hylidae, Ceratophryidae, Ranidae, Bufonidae, and Dendrobatidae. In all species examined herein, we found fungiform and filiform papillae on the tongue surface. Further, we observed a high degree of variation among tongues in different frogs. These differences can be seen in the size and shape of the papillae, in the fine-structures on the papillae, as well as in the three-dimensional organization of subsurface tissues. Notably, the fine-structures on the filiform papillae in frogs comprise hair-like protrusions (Megophryidae and Ranidae), microridges (Bufonidae and Dendrobatidae), or can be irregularly shaped or absent as observed in the remaining taxa examined herein. Some of this variation might be related to different degrees of adhesive performance and may point to differences in the spectra of prey items between frog taxa. PMID:27547606

  15. Frog tongue surface microstructures: functional and evolutionary patterns.

    PubMed

    Kleinteich, Thomas; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2016-01-01

    Frogs (Lissamphibia: Anura) use adhesive tongues to capture fast moving, elusive prey. For this, the tongues are moved quickly and adhere instantaneously to various prey surfaces. Recently, the functional morphology of frog tongues was discussed in context of their adhesive performance. It was suggested that the interaction between the tongue surface and the mucus coating is important for generating strong pull-off forces. However, despite the general notions about its importance for a successful contact with the prey, little is known about the surface structure of frog tongues. Previous studies focused almost exclusively on species within the Ranidae and Bufonidae, neglecting the wide diversity of frogs. Here we examined the tongue surface in nine different frog species, comprising eight different taxa, i.e., the Alytidae, Bombinatoridae, Megophryidae, Hylidae, Ceratophryidae, Ranidae, Bufonidae, and Dendrobatidae. In all species examined herein, we found fungiform and filiform papillae on the tongue surface. Further, we observed a high degree of variation among tongues in different frogs. These differences can be seen in the size and shape of the papillae, in the fine-structures on the papillae, as well as in the three-dimensional organization of subsurface tissues. Notably, the fine-structures on the filiform papillae in frogs comprise hair-like protrusions (Megophryidae and Ranidae), microridges (Bufonidae and Dendrobatidae), or can be irregularly shaped or absent as observed in the remaining taxa examined herein. Some of this variation might be related to different degrees of adhesive performance and may point to differences in the spectra of prey items between frog taxa. PMID:27547606

  16. Chytridiomycosis in dwarf African frogs Hymenochirus curtipes.

    PubMed

    Murphy, B G; Hillman, C; Groff, J M

    2015-05-11

    Chytridiomycosis, resulting from an infection with the fungal agent Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), has resulted in widespread population declines in both wild and captive amphibians. The dwarf African frog (DAF) Hymenochirus curtipes is native to central Africa and is commonly sold throughout North America as an aquarium pet species. Here we document fatal chytridiomycosis resulting from cutaneous Bd infections in DAF purchased directly from a pet store and from a historical lethal epizootic occurring at an aquaculture facility in central California, USA, more than 25 yr ago. Histological lesions and PCR-amplified sequence data were consistent with the etiology of Bd. The potential epidemiological relevance of this infection in DAF is discussed. PMID:25958807

  17. NEUTRONIC REACTOR CONTROL ROD DRIVE APPARATUS

    DOEpatents

    Oakes, L.C.; Walker, C.S.

    1959-12-15

    ABS>A suspension mechanism between a vertically movable nuclear reactor control rod and a rod extension, which also provides information for the operator or an automatic control signal, is described. A spring connects the rod extension to a drive shift. The extension of the spring indicates whether (1) the rod is at rest on the reactor, (2) the rod and extension are suspended, or (3) the extension alone is suspended, the spring controlling a 3-position electrical switch.

  18. Water relations of the burrowing sandhill frog, Arenophryne rotunda (Myobatrachidae).

    PubMed

    Cartledge, V A; Withers, P C; Thompson, G G; McMaster, K A

    2006-05-01

    Arenophryne rotunda is a small (2-8 g) terrestrial frog that inhabits the coastal sand dunes of central Western Australia. While sand burrowing is a strategy employed by many frog species inhabiting Australia's semi-arid and arid zones, A. rotunda is unique among burrowing species because it lives independently of free water and can be found nocturnally active on the dune surface for relatively extended periods. Consequently, we examined the physiological factors that enable this unique frog to maintain water balance. A. rotunda was not found to have any special adaptation to reduce EWL (being equivalent to a free water surface) or rehydrate from water (having the lowest rehydration rate measured for 15 Western Australian frog species), but it was able to maintain water balance in sand of very low moisture (1-2%). Frogs excavated in the field were in dune sand of 4.4% moisture content, as a consequence of recent rain, which was more than adequate for these frogs to maintain water balance as reflected by their low plasma and urine osmotic concentrations. We suggest that in dry periods of the year, A. rotunda can achieve positive water balance by cutaneous water uptake by burrowing deeper into the substrate to where the percent water content is greater than 1.5%. PMID:16315052

  19. Frog tongue acts as muscle-powered adhesive tape.

    PubMed

    Kleinteich, Thomas; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2015-09-01

    Frogs are well known to capture fast-moving prey by flicking their sticky tongues out of the mouth. This tongue projection behaviour happens extremely fast which makes frog tongues a biological high-speed adhesive system. The processes at the interface between tongue and prey, and thus the mechanism of adhesion, however, are completely unknown. Here, we captured the contact mechanics of frog tongues by filming tongue adhesion at 2000 frames per second through an illuminated glass. We found that the tongue rolls over the target during attachment. However, during the pulling phase, the tongue retractor muscle acts perpendicular to the target surface and thus prevents peeling during tongue retraction. When the tongue detaches, mucus fibrils form between the tongue and the target. Fibrils commonly occur in pressure-sensitive adhesives, and thus frog tongues might be a biological analogue to these engineered materials. The fibrils in frog tongues are related to the presence of microscopic papillae on the surface. Together with a layer of nanoscale fibres underneath the tongue epithelium, these surface papillae will make the tongue adaptable to asperities. For the first time, to the best of our knowledge, we are able to integrate anatomy and function to explain the processes during adhesion in frog tongues. PMID:26473054

  20. Frog tongue acts as muscle-powered adhesive tape

    PubMed Central

    Kleinteich, Thomas; Gorb, Stanislav N.

    2015-01-01

    Frogs are well known to capture fast-moving prey by flicking their sticky tongues out of the mouth. This tongue projection behaviour happens extremely fast which makes frog tongues a biological high-speed adhesive system. The processes at the interface between tongue and prey, and thus the mechanism of adhesion, however, are completely unknown. Here, we captured the contact mechanics of frog tongues by filming tongue adhesion at 2000 frames per second through an illuminated glass. We found that the tongue rolls over the target during attachment. However, during the pulling phase, the tongue retractor muscle acts perpendicular to the target surface and thus prevents peeling during tongue retraction. When the tongue detaches, mucus fibrils form between the tongue and the target. Fibrils commonly occur in pressure-sensitive adhesives, and thus frog tongues might be a biological analogue to these engineered materials. The fibrils in frog tongues are related to the presence of microscopic papillae on the surface. Together with a layer of nanoscale fibres underneath the tongue epithelium, these surface papillae will make the tongue adaptable to asperities. For the first time, to the best of our knowledge, we are able to integrate anatomy and function to explain the processes during adhesion in frog tongues. PMID:26473054

  1. Pure Ultrasonic Communication in an Endemic Bornean Frog

    PubMed Central

    Arch, Victoria S.; Grafe, T. Ulmar; Gridi-Papp, Marcos; Narins, Peter M.

    2009-01-01

    Huia cavitympanum, an endemic Bornean frog, is the first amphibian species known to emit exclusively ultrasonic (i.e., >20 kHz) vocal signals. To test the hypothesis that these frogs use purely ultrasonic vocalizations for intraspecific communication, we performed playback experiments with male frogs in their natural calling sites. We found that the frogs respond with increased calling to broadcasts of conspecific calls containing only ultrasound. The field study was complemented by electrophysiological recordings from the auditory midbrain and by laser Doppler vibrometer measurements of the tympanic membrane's response to acoustic stimulation. These measurements revealed that the frog's auditory system is broadly tuned over high frequencies, with peak sensitivity occurring within the ultrasonic frequency range. Our results demonstrate that H. cavitympanum is the first non-mammalian vertebrate described to communicate with purely ultrasonic acoustic signals. These data suggest that further examination of the similarities and differences in the high-frequency/ultrasonic communication systems of H. cavitympanum and Odorrana tormota, an unrelated frog species that produces and detects ultrasound but does not emit exclusively ultrasonic calls, will afford new insights into the mechanisms underlying vertebrate high-frequency communication. PMID:19401782

  2. Plasticity of peripheral auditory frequency sensitivity in Emei music frog.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dian; Cui, Jianguo; Tang, Yezhong

    2012-01-01

    In anurans reproductive behavior is strongly seasonal. During the spring, frogs emerge from hibernation and males vocalize for mating or advertising territories. Female frogs have the ability to evaluate the quality of the males' resources on the basis of these vocalizations. Although studies revealed that central single torus semicircularis neurons in frogs exhibit season plasticity, the plasticity of peripheral auditory sensitivity in frog is unknown. In this study the seasonally plasticity of peripheral auditory sensitivity was test in the Emei music frog Babina daunchina, by comparing thresholds and latencies of auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) evoked by tone pips and clicks in the reproductive and non-reproductive seasons. The results show that both ABR thresholds and latency differ significantly between the reproductive and non-reproductive seasons. The thresholds of tone pip evoked ABRs in the non-reproductive season increased significantly about 10 dB than those in the reproductive season for frequencies from 1 KHz to 6 KHz. ABR latencies to waveform valley values for tone pips for the same frequencies using appropriate threshold stimulus levels are longer than those in the reproductive season for frequencies from 1.5 to 6 KHz range, although from 0.2 to 1.5 KHz range it is shorter in the non-reproductive season. These results demonstrated that peripheral auditory frequency sensitivity exhibits seasonal plasticity changes which may be adaptive to seasonal reproductive behavior in frogs. PMID:23029243

  3. Stuck fuel rod capping sleeve

    DOEpatents

    Gorscak, Donald A.; Maringo, John J.; Nilsen, Roy J.

    1988-01-01

    A stuck fuel rod capping sleeve to be used during derodding of spent fuel assemblies if a fuel rod becomes stuck in a partially withdrawn position and, thus, has to be severed. The capping sleeve has an inner sleeve made of a lower work hardening highly ductile material (e.g., Inconel 600) and an outer sleeve made of a moderately ductile material (e.g., 304 stainless steel). The inner sleeve may be made of an epoxy filler. The capping sleeve is placed on a fuel rod which is then severed by using a bolt cutter device. Upon cutting, the capping sleeve deforms in such a manner as to prevent the gross release of radioactive fuel material

  4. Advanced gray rod control assembly

    DOEpatents

    Drudy, Keith J; Carlson, William R; Conner, Michael E; Goldenfield, Mark; Hone, Michael J; Long, Jr., Carroll J; Parkinson, Jerod; Pomirleanu, Radu O

    2013-09-17

    An advanced gray rod control assembly (GRCA) for a nuclear reactor. The GRCA provides controlled insertion of gray rod assemblies into the reactor, thereby controlling the rate of power produced by the reactor and providing reactivity control at full power. Each gray rod assembly includes an elongated tubular member, a primary neutron-absorber disposed within the tubular member said neutron-absorber comprising an absorber material, preferably tungsten, having a 2200 m/s neutron absorption microscopic capture cross-section of from 10 to 30 barns. An internal support tube can be positioned between the primary absorber and the tubular member as a secondary absorber to enhance neutron absorption, absorber depletion, assembly weight, and assembly heat transfer characteristics.

  5. Predation by Oregon spotted frogs (Rana pretiosa) on Western toads (Bufo boreas) in Oregon, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pearl, Christopher A.; Hayes, M.P.

    2002-01-01

    Toads of the genus Bufo co-occur with true frogs (family Ranidae) throughout their North American ranges. Yet, Bufo are rarely reported as prey for ranid frogs, perhaps due to dermal toxins that afford them protection from some predators. We report field observations from four different localities demonstrating that Oregon spotted frogs (Rana pretiosa) readily consume juvenile western toads (Bufo boreas) at breeding sites in Oregon. Unpalatability thought to deter predators of selected taxa and feeding mode may not protect juvenile stages of western toads from adult Oregon spotted frogs. Activity of juvenile western toads can elicit ambush behavior by Oregon spotted frog adults. Our review of published literature suggests that regular consumption of toadlets sets Oregon spotted frogs apart from most North American ranid frogs. Importance of the trophic context of juvenile western toads as a seasonally important resource to Oregon spotted frogs needs critical investigation.

  6. Resurrecting an Extinct Species: Archival DNA, Taxonomy, and Conservation of the Vegas Valley Leopard Frog

    EPA Science Inventory

    Suggestions that the extinct Vegas Valley leopard frog (Rana fisheri = Lithobates fisheri) may have been synonymous with one of several declining species has complicated recovery planning for imperiled leopard frogs in southwestern North America. To address this concern, we recon...

  7. Panamanian frog species host unique skin bacterial communities.

    PubMed

    Belden, Lisa K; Hughey, Myra C; Rebollar, Eria A; Umile, Thomas P; Loftus, Stephen C; Burzynski, Elizabeth A; Minbiole, Kevin P C; House, Leanna L; Jensen, Roderick V; Becker, Matthew H; Walke, Jenifer B; Medina, Daniel; Ibáñez, Roberto; Harris, Reid N

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates, including amphibians, host diverse symbiotic microbes that contribute to host disease resistance. Globally, and especially in montane tropical systems, many amphibian species are threatened by a chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), that causes a lethal skin disease. Bd therefore may be a strong selective agent on the diversity and function of the microbial communities inhabiting amphibian skin. In Panamá, amphibian population declines and the spread of Bd have been tracked. In 2012, we completed a field survey in Panamá to examine frog skin microbiota in the context of Bd infection. We focused on three frog species and collected two skin swabs per frog from a total of 136 frogs across four sites that varied from west to east in the time since Bd arrival. One swab was used to assess bacterial community structure using 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing and to determine Bd infection status, and one was used to assess metabolite diversity, as the bacterial production of anti-fungal metabolites is an important disease resistance function. The skin microbiota of the three Panamanian frog species differed in OTU (operational taxonomic unit, ~bacterial species) community composition and metabolite profiles, although the pattern was less strong for the metabolites. Comparisons between frog skin bacterial communities from Panamá and the US suggest broad similarities at the phylum level, but key differences at lower taxonomic levels. In our field survey in Panamá, across all four sites, only 35 individuals (~26%) were Bd infected. There was no clustering of OTUs or metabolite profiles based on Bd infection status and no clear pattern of west-east changes in OTUs or metabolite profiles across the four sites. Overall, our field survey data suggest that different bacterial communities might be producing broadly similar sets of metabolites across frog hosts and sites. Community structure and function may not be as tightly coupled in these skin symbiont

  8. Cystic urolithiasis in captive waxy monkey frogs (Phyllomedusa sauvagii).

    PubMed

    Archibald, Kate E; Minter, Larry J; Dombrowski, Daniel S; O'Brien, Jodi L; Lewbart, Gregory A

    2015-03-01

    The waxy monkey frog (Phyllomedusa sauvagii) is an arboreal amphibian native to arid regions of South America, and it has developed behavioral and physiologic adaptations to permit survival in dry environments. These adaptations include a uricotelic nitrogen metabolism and unique cutaneous lipid excretions to prevent evaporative water loss. Uroliths are a rare finding in amphibians. Six adult, presumed wild-caught waxy monkey frogs housed in a museum animal collection were diagnosed with cystic urolithiasis over a 7-yr period, and a single animal was diagnosed with four recurrent cases. Six cases were identified incidentally at routine physical or postmortem examination and four cases were identified during veterinary evaluation for coelomic distension, lethargy, anorexia, and increased soaking behavior. Calculi were surgically removed from three frogs via cystotomy, and a single frog underwent three cystotomies and two cloacotomies for recurrent urolithiasis. Two frogs died within the 24-hr postoperative period. Two representative calculi from a single frog were submitted for component analysis and found to consist of 100% ammonium urate. In the present report, cystic calculi are proposed to be the result of a high-protein diet based on a single invertebrate source, coupled with uricotelism, dehydration, increased cutaneous water loss, body temperature fluctuations facilitating supersaturation of urine, and subsequent accumulation and precipitation of urogenous wastes within the urinary bladder. Surgical cystotomy represents a short-term treatment strategy for this condition. Preventative measures, such as supplying a diversified and balanced diet in addition to environmental manipulation aimed at promoting adequate hydration, are anticipated to be more-rewarding management tools for cystic urolithiasis in the waxy monkey frog. PMID:25831582

  9. Panamanian frog species host unique skin bacterial communities

    PubMed Central

    Belden, Lisa K.; Hughey, Myra C.; Rebollar, Eria A.; Umile, Thomas P.; Loftus, Stephen C.; Burzynski, Elizabeth A.; Minbiole, Kevin P. C.; House, Leanna L.; Jensen, Roderick V.; Becker, Matthew H.; Walke, Jenifer B.; Medina, Daniel; Ibáñez, Roberto; Harris, Reid N.

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates, including amphibians, host diverse symbiotic microbes that contribute to host disease resistance. Globally, and especially in montane tropical systems, many amphibian species are threatened by a chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), that causes a lethal skin disease. Bd therefore may be a strong selective agent on the diversity and function of the microbial communities inhabiting amphibian skin. In Panamá, amphibian population declines and the spread of Bd have been tracked. In 2012, we completed a field survey in Panamá to examine frog skin microbiota in the context of Bd infection. We focused on three frog species and collected two skin swabs per frog from a total of 136 frogs across four sites that varied from west to east in the time since Bd arrival. One swab was used to assess bacterial community structure using 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing and to determine Bd infection status, and one was used to assess metabolite diversity, as the bacterial production of anti-fungal metabolites is an important disease resistance function. The skin microbiota of the three Panamanian frog species differed in OTU (operational taxonomic unit, ~bacterial species) community composition and metabolite profiles, although the pattern was less strong for the metabolites. Comparisons between frog skin bacterial communities from Panamá and the US suggest broad similarities at the phylum level, but key differences at lower taxonomic levels. In our field survey in Panamá, across all four sites, only 35 individuals (~26%) were Bd infected. There was no clustering of OTUs or metabolite profiles based on Bd infection status and no clear pattern of west-east changes in OTUs or metabolite profiles across the four sites. Overall, our field survey data suggest that different bacterial communities might be producing broadly similar sets of metabolites across frog hosts and sites. Community structure and function may not be as tightly coupled in these skin symbiont

  10. Complete mitochondrial genome of the Greek marsh frog Pelophylax cretensis (Anura, Ranidae).

    PubMed

    Hofman, Sebastian; Pabijan, Maciej; Osikowski, Artur; Szymura, Jacek M

    2016-05-01

    We sequenced the complete mitochondrial genome of the Greek marsh frog Pelophylax cretensis, a water frog species endemic to the island of Crete. The genome sequence was 17,829 bp in size, and the gene order and contents were identical to those of previously reported mitochondrial genomes of other water frog species. This is the first complete mitogenome (i.e. including control region) described for western Palaearctic water frogs. PMID:25329260

  11. Interaction of 4.1G and cGMP-gated channels in rod photoreceptor outer segments

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Christiana L.; Molday, Robert S.

    2013-01-01

    Summary In photoreceptors, the assembly of signaling molecules into macromolecular complexes is important for phototransduction and maintaining the structural integrity of rod outer segments (ROSs). However, the molecular composition and formation of these complexes are poorly understood. Using immunoprecipitation and mass spectrometry, 4.1G was identified as a new interacting partner for the cyclic-nucleotide gated (CNG) channels in ROSs. 4.1G is a widely expressed multifunctional protein that plays a role in the assembly and stability of membrane protein complexes. Multiple splice variants of 4.1G were cloned from bovine retina. A smaller splice variant of 4.1G selectively interacted with CNG channels not associated with peripherin-2–CNG channel complex. A combination of truncation studies and domain-binding assays demonstrated that CNG channels selectively interacted with 4.1G through their FERM and CTD domains. Using immunofluorescence, labeling of 4.1G was seen to be punctate and partially colocalized with CNG channels in the ROS. Our studies indicate that 4.1G interacts with a subset of CNG channels in the ROS and implicate this protein–protein interaction in organizing the spatial arrangement of CNG channels in the plasma membrane of outer segments. PMID:24144699

  12. 49 CFR 213.143 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.143... ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.143 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs shall be within the...

  13. 49 CFR 213.143 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.143... ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.143 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs shall be within the...

  14. 49 CFR 213.143 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.143... ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.143 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs shall be within the...

  15. 49 CFR 213.143 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.143... ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.143 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs shall be within the...

  16. 49 CFR 213.143 - Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. 213.143... ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TRACK SAFETY STANDARDS Track Structure § 213.143 Frog guard rails and guard faces; gage. The guard check and guard face gages in frogs shall be within the...

  17. 75 FR 8733 - Least Chub and Columbia Spotted Frog Candidate Conservation Agreement With Assurances; Receipt of...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-02-25

    ... Fish and Wildlife Service Least Chub and Columbia Spotted Frog Candidate Conservation Agreement With... (CCAA) for the least chub (Iotichthys phlegethontis) and Columbia spotted frog (Rana lutreiventris..., least chub and Columbia spotted frog inhabited a variety of aquatic habitat types throughout...

  18. The Funeral of Froggy the Frog: The Child as Dramatist, Designer, and Realist

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cummins, Lauren

    2004-01-01

    One sunny afternoon, six-year-old Zachary and his friend John Michael, four and a half, discovered a dead frog in a bag of clay in the garage. Zachary proposed, "Let's have a funeral for the frog." This is how the funeral drama of Froggy the Frog began. This article describes the play experiences of Zachary and John Michael as designers,…

  19. Sophisticated Communication in the Brazilian Torrent Frog Hylodes japi.

    PubMed

    de Sá, Fábio P; Zina, Juliana; Haddad, Célio F B

    2016-01-01

    Intraspecific communication in frogs plays an important role in the recognition of conspecifics in general and of potential rivals or mates in particular and therefore with relevant consequences for pre-zygotic reproductive isolation. We investigate intraspecific communication in Hylodes japi, an endemic Brazilian torrent frog with territorial males and an elaborate courtship behavior. We describe its repertoire of acoustic signals as well as one of the most complex repertoires of visual displays known in anurans, including five new visual displays. Previously unknown in frogs, we also describe a bimodal inter-sexual communication system where the female stimulates the male to emit a courtship call. As another novelty for frogs, we show that in addition to choosing which limb to signal with, males choose which of their two vocal sacs will be used for visual signaling. We explain how and why this is accomplished. Control of inflation also provides additional evidence that vocal sac movement and color must be important for visual communication, even while producing sound. Through the current knowledge on visual signaling in Neotropical torrent frogs (i.e. hylodids), we discuss and highlight the behavioral diversity in the family Hylodidae. Our findings indicate that communication in species of Hylodes is undoubtedly more sophisticated than we expected and that visual communication in anurans is more widespread than previously thought. This is especially true in tropical regions, most likely due to the higher number of species and phylogenetic groups and/or to ecological factors, such as higher microhabitat diversity. PMID:26760304

  20. Drainage ditches facilitate frog movements in a hostile landscape

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazerolle, M.J.

    2005-01-01

    Ditches are common in landscapes influenced by agricultural, forestry, and peat mining activities, and their value as corridors remains unassessed. Pond-breeding amphibians can encounter hostile environments when moving between breeding, summering, or hibernation sites, and are likely to benefit from the presence of ditches in the landscape. Within a system consisting of ditch networks in bogs mined for peat in eastern New Brunswick, Canada, I quantified the breeding, survival, and movements of green frogs (Rana clamitans melanota) in drainage ditches and also surveyed peat fields. Frogs rarely ventured on peat fields and most individuals frequented drainage ditches containing water, particularly in late summer. Though frogs did not breed in ditches, their survival rate in ditches was high (88%). Ditches did not hinder frog movements, as frogs moved independently of the current. Results indicate that drainage ditches containing water enable some movements between habitats isolated by peat mining, in contrast to peat surfaces, and suggest they function as amphibian movement corridors. Thus, such drainage ditches may mitigate the effects of peat extraction on amphibian populations. At the very least, these structures provide an alternative to hostile peat surfaces. This study highlights that small-scale corridors are potentially valuable in population dynamics. ?? Springer 2005.

  1. Intersexuality and the Cricket Frog Decline: Historic and Geographic Trends

    PubMed Central

    Reeder, Amy L.; Ruiz, Marilyn O.; Pessier, Allan; Brown, Lauren E.; Levengood, Jeffrey M.; Phillips, Christopher A.; Wheeler, Matthew B.; Warner, Richard E.; Beasley, Val R.

    2005-01-01

    Exposure to anthropogenic endocrine disruptors has been listed as one of several potential causes of amphibian declines in recent years. We examined gonads of 814 cricket frogs (Acris crepitans) collected in Illinois and deposited in museum collections to elucidate relationships between the decline of this species in Illinois and the spatial and temporal distribution of individuals with intersex gonads. Compared with the preorganochlorine era studied (1852–1929), the percentage of intersex cricket frogs increased during the period of industrial growth and initial uses of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) (1930–1945), was highest during the greatest manufacture and use of p,p-dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and PCBs (1946–1959), began declining with the increase in public concern and environmental regulations that reduced and then prevented sales of DDT in the United States (1960–1979), and continued to decline through the period of gradual reductions in environmental residues of organochlorine pesticides and PCBs in the midwestern United States (1980–2001). The proportion of intersex individuals among those frogs was highest in the heavily industrialized and urbanized northeastern portion of Illinois, intermediate in the intensively farmed central and northwestern areas, and lowest in the less intensively managed and ecologically more diverse southern part of the state. Records of deposits of cricket frog specimens into museum collections indicate a marked reduction in numbers from northeastern Illinois in recent decades. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that endocrine disruption contributed to the decline of cricket frogs in Illinois. PMID:15743712

  2. Tourism and the Conservation of Critically Endangered Frogs

    PubMed Central

    Morrison, Clare; Simpkins, Clay; Castley, J. Guy; Buckley, Ralf C.

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas are critical for the conservation of many threatened species. Despite this, many protected areas are acutely underfunded, which reduces their effectiveness significantly. Tourism is one mechanism to promote and fund conservation in protected areas, but there are few studies analyzing its tangible conservation outcomes for threatened species. This study uses the 415 IUCN critically endangered frog species to evaluate the contribution of protected area tourism revenue to conservation. Contributions were calculated for each species as the proportion of geographic range inside protected areas multiplied by the proportion of protected area revenues derived from tourism. Geographic ranges were determined from IUCN Extent of Occurrence maps. Almost 60% (239) of critically endangered frog species occur in protected areas. Higher proportions of total range are protected in Nearctic, Australasian and Afrotopical regions. Tourism contributions to protected area budgets ranged from 5–100%. These financial contributions are highest for developing countries in the Afrotropical, Indomalayan and Neotropical regions. Data for both geographic range and budget are available for 201 critically endangered frog species with proportional contributions from tourism to species protection ranging from 0.8–99%. Tourism's financial contributions to critically endangered frog species protection are highest in the Afrotropical region. This study uses a coarse measure but at the global scale it demonstrates that tourism has significant potential to contribute to global frog conservation efforts. PMID:22984440

  3. Tourism and the conservation of critically endangered frogs.

    PubMed

    Morrison, Clare; Simpkins, Clay; Castley, J Guy; Buckley, Ralf C

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas are critical for the conservation of many threatened species. Despite this, many protected areas are acutely underfunded, which reduces their effectiveness significantly. Tourism is one mechanism to promote and fund conservation in protected areas, but there are few studies analyzing its tangible conservation outcomes for threatened species. This study uses the 415 IUCN critically endangered frog species to evaluate the contribution of protected area tourism revenue to conservation. Contributions were calculated for each species as the proportion of geographic range inside protected areas multiplied by the proportion of protected area revenues derived from tourism. Geographic ranges were determined from IUCN Extent of Occurrence maps. Almost 60% (239) of critically endangered frog species occur in protected areas. Higher proportions of total range are protected in Nearctic, Australasian and Afrotopical regions. Tourism contributions to protected area budgets ranged from 5-100%. These financial contributions are highest for developing countries in the Afrotropical, Indomalayan and Neotropical regions. Data for both geographic range and budget are available for 201 critically endangered frog species with proportional contributions from tourism to species protection ranging from 0.8-99%. Tourism's financial contributions to critically endangered frog species protection are highest in the Afrotropical region. This study uses a coarse measure but at the global scale it demonstrates that tourism has significant potential to contribute to global frog conservation efforts. PMID:22984440

  4. Sophisticated Communication in the Brazilian Torrent Frog Hylodes japi

    PubMed Central

    de Sá, Fábio P.; Zina, Juliana; Haddad, Célio F. B.

    2016-01-01

    Intraspecific communication in frogs plays an important role in the recognition of conspecifics in general and of potential rivals or mates in particular and therefore with relevant consequences for pre-zygotic reproductive isolation. We investigate intraspecific communication in Hylodes japi, an endemic Brazilian torrent frog with territorial males and an elaborate courtship behavior. We describe its repertoire of acoustic signals as well as one of the most complex repertoires of visual displays known in anurans, including five new visual displays. Previously unknown in frogs, we also describe a bimodal inter-sexual communication system where the female stimulates the male to emit a courtship call. As another novelty for frogs, we show that in addition to choosing which limb to signal with, males choose which of their two vocal sacs will be used for visual signaling. We explain how and why this is accomplished. Control of inflation also provides additional evidence that vocal sac movement and color must be important for visual communication, even while producing sound. Through the current knowledge on visual signaling in Neotropical torrent frogs (i.e. hylodids), we discuss and highlight the behavioral diversity in the family Hylodidae. Our findings indicate that communication in species of Hylodes is undoubtedly more sophisticated than we expected and that visual communication in anurans is more widespread than previously thought. This is especially true in tropical regions, most likely due to the higher number of species and phylogenetic groups and/or to ecological factors, such as higher microhabitat diversity. PMID:26760304

  5. Three-Rod Linear Ion Traps

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Janik, Gary R.; Prestage, John D.; Maleki, Lutfollah

    1993-01-01

    Three-parallel-rod electrode structures proposed for use in linear ion traps and possibly for electrostatic levitation of macroscopic particles. Provides wider viewing angle because they confine ions in regions outside rod-electrode structures.

  6. Control rods in LMFBRs: a physics assessment

    SciTech Connect

    McFarlane, H.F.; Collins, P.J.

    1982-08-01

    This physics assessment is based on roughly 300 control rod worth measurements in ZPPR from 1972 to 1981. All ZPPR assemblies simulated mixed-oxide LMFBRs, representing sizes of 350, 700, and 900 MWe. Control rod worth measurements included single rods, various combinations of rods, and Ta and Eu rods. Additional measurements studied variations in B/sub 4/C enrichment, rod interaction effects, variations in rod geometry, neutron streaming in sodium-filled channels, and axial worth profiles. Analyses were done with design-equivalent methods, using ENDF/B Version IV data. Some computations for the sensitivities to approximations in the methods have been included. Comparisons of these analyses with the experiments have allowed the status of control rod physics in the US to be clearly defined.

  7. A perchlorate sensitive iodide transporter in frogs

    PubMed Central

    Carr, Deborah L.; Carr, James A.; Willis, Ray E.; Pressley, Thomas A.

    2008-01-01

    Nucleotide sequence comparisons have identified a gene product in the genome database of African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) as a probable member of the solute carrier family of membrane transporters. To confirm its identity as a putative iodide transporter, we examined the function of this sequence after heterologous expression in mammalian cells. A green monkey kidney cell line transfected with the Xenopus nucleotide sequence had significantly greater 125I uptake than sham-transfected control cells. The uptake in carrier-transfected cells was significantly inhibited in the presence of perchlorate, a competitive inhibitor of mammalian Na+/iodide symporter. Tissue distributions of the sequence were also consistent with a role in iodide uptake. The mRNA encoding the carrier was found to be expressed in the thyroid gland, stomach, and kidney of tadpoles from X. laevis, as well as the bullfrog Rana catesbeiana. The ovaries of adult X. laevis also were found to express the carrier. Phylogenetic analysis suggested that the putative X. laevis iodide transporter is orthologous to vertebrate Na+-dependent iodide symporters. We conclude that the amphibian sequence encodes a protein that is indeed a functional Na+/iodide symporter in Xenopus laevis, as well as Rana catesbeiana. PMID:18275962

  8. Solid-state-laser-rod holder

    DOEpatents

    Gettemy, D.J.; Barnes, N.P.; Griggs, J.E.

    1981-08-11

    The disclosure relates to a solid state laser rod holder comprising Invar, copper tubing, and epoxy joints. Materials and coefficients of expansion of the components of the holder combine with the rod to produce a joint which will give before the rod itself will. The rod may be lased at about 70 to 80/sup 0/K and returned from such a temperature to room temperature repeatedly without its or the holder's destruction.

  9. Sticking under Wet Conditions: The Remarkable Attachment Abilities of the Torrent Frog, Staurois guttatus

    PubMed Central

    Endlein, Thomas; Barnes, W. Jon P.; Samuel, Diana S.; Crawford, Niall A.; Biaw, Ang Bee; Grafe, Ulmar

    2013-01-01

    Tree frogs climb smooth surfaces utilising capillary forces arising from an air-fluid interface around their toe pads, whereas torrent frogs are able to climb in wet environments near waterfalls where the integrity of the meniscus is at risk. This study compares the adhesive capabilities of a torrent frog to a tree frog, investigating possible adaptations for adhesion under wet conditions. We challenged both frog species to cling to a platform which could be tilted from the horizontal to an upside-down orientation, testing the frogs on different levels of roughness and water flow. On dry, smooth surfaces, both frog species stayed attached to overhanging slopes equally well. In contrast, under both low and high flow rate conditions, the torrent frogs performed significantly better, even adhering under conditions where their toe pads were submerged in water, abolishing the meniscus that underlies capillarity. Using a transparent platform where areas of contact are illuminated, we measured the contact area of frogs during platform rotation under dry conditions. Both frog species not only used the contact area of their pads to adhere, but also large parts of their belly and thigh skin. In the tree frogs, the belly and thighs often detached on steeper slopes, whereas the torrent frogs increased the use of these areas as the slope angle increased. Probing small areas of the different skin parts with a force transducer revealed that forces declined significantly in wet conditions, with only minor differences between the frog species. The superior abilities of the torrent frogs were thus due to the large contact area they used on steep, overhanging surfaces. SEM images revealed slightly elongated cells in the periphery of the toe pads in the torrent frogs, with straightened channels in between them which could facilitate drainage of excess fluid underneath the pad. PMID:24086297

  10. Sticking under wet conditions: the remarkable attachment abilities of the torrent frog, Staurois guttatus.

    PubMed

    Endlein, Thomas; Barnes, W Jon P; Samuel, Diana S; Crawford, Niall A; Biaw, Ang Bee; Grafe, Ulmar

    2013-01-01

    Tree frogs climb smooth surfaces utilising capillary forces arising from an air-fluid interface around their toe pads, whereas torrent frogs are able to climb in wet environments near waterfalls where the integrity of the meniscus is at risk. This study compares the adhesive capabilities of a torrent frog to a tree frog, investigating possible adaptations for adhesion under wet conditions. We challenged both frog species to cling to a platform which could be tilted from the horizontal to an upside-down orientation, testing the frogs on different levels of roughness and water flow. On dry, smooth surfaces, both frog species stayed attached to overhanging slopes equally well. In contrast, under both low and high flow rate conditions, the torrent frogs performed significantly better, even adhering under conditions where their toe pads were submerged in water, abolishing the meniscus that underlies capillarity. Using a transparent platform where areas of contact are illuminated, we measured the contact area of frogs during platform rotation under dry conditions. Both frog species not only used the contact area of their pads to adhere, but also large parts of their belly and thigh skin. In the tree frogs, the belly and thighs often detached on steeper slopes, whereas the torrent frogs increased the use of these areas as the slope angle increased. Probing small areas of the different skin parts with a force transducer revealed that forces declined significantly in wet conditions, with only minor differences between the frog species. The superior abilities of the torrent frogs were thus due to the large contact area they used on steep, overhanging surfaces. SEM images revealed slightly elongated cells in the periphery of the toe pads in the torrent frogs, with straightened channels in between them which could facilitate drainage of excess fluid underneath the pad. PMID:24086297