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Sample records for rod photoreceptors correlates

  1. 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)

  2. Dynamic behavior of rod photoreceptor disks.

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Chunhe; Jiang, Yunhai; Koutalos, Yiannis

    2002-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells use membrane organelles, like the endoplasmic reticulum or the Golgi, to carry out different functions. Vertebrate rod photoreceptors use hundreds of membrane sacs (the disks) for the detection of light. We have used fluorescent tracers and single cell imaging to study the properties of rod photoreceptor disks. Labeling of intact rod photoreceptors with membrane markers and polar tracers revealed communication between intradiskal and extracellular space. Internalized tracers moved along the length of the rod outer segment, indicating communication between the disks as well. This communication involved the exchange of both membrane and aqueous phase and had a time constant in the order of minutes. The communication pathway uses approximately 2% of the available membrane disk area and does not allow the passage of molecules larger than 10 kDa. It was possible to load the intradiskal space with fluorescent Ca(2+) and pH dyes, which reported an intradiskal Ca(2+) concentration in the order of 1 microM and an acidic pH 6.5, both of them significantly different than intracellular and extracellular Ca(2+) concentrations and pH. The results suggest that the rod photoreceptor disks are not discrete, passive sacs but rather comprise an active cellular organelle. The communication between disks may be important for membrane remodeling as well as for providing access to the intradiskal space of the whole outer segment. PMID:12202366

  3. Modeling the Flexural Rigidity of Rod Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Haeri, Mohammad; Knox, Barry E.; Ahmadi, Aphrodite

    2013-01-01

    In vertebrate eyes, the rod photoreceptor has a modified cilium with an extended cylindrical structure specialized for phototransduction called the outer segment (OS). The OS has numerous stacked membrane disks and can bend or break when subjected to mechanical forces. The OS exhibits axial structural variation, with extended bands composed of a few hundred membrane disks whose thickness is diurnally modulated. Using high-resolution confocal microscopy, we have observed OS flexing and disruption in live transgenic Xenopus rods. Based on the experimental observations, we introduce a coarse-grained model of OS mechanical rigidity using elasticity theory, representing the axial OS banding explicitly via a spring-bead model. We calculate a bending stiffness of ∼105 nN⋅μm2, which is seven orders-of-magnitude larger than that of typical cilia and flagella. This bending stiffness has a quadratic relation to OS radius, so that thinner OS have lower fragility. Furthermore, we find that increasing the spatial frequency of axial OS banding decreases OS rigidity, reducing its fragility. Moreover, the model predicts a tendency for OS to break in bands with higher spring number density, analogous to the experimental observation that transgenic rods tended to break preferentially in bands of high fluorescence. We discuss how pathological alterations of disk membrane properties by mutant proteins may lead to increased OS rigidity and thus increased breakage, ultimately contributing to retinal degeneration. PMID:23442852

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Polymorphism in purified guanylate cyclase from vertebrate rod photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi, F; Yamazaki, A

    1991-01-01

    Guanylate cyclase from rod photoreceptors of amphibian (toad, Bufo marinus, and frog, Rana catesbeiana) and bovine retinas was solubilized and purified by a single chromatography step on a GTP-agarose column. Silver staining of purified amphibian enzymes in SDS/polyacrylamide gels disclosed a doublet band (110 and 115 kDa), while the bovine enzyme appeared as a singlet band (110 kDa). The identification of these guanylate cyclases was confirmed using three chromatography systems with the purified enzymes. Specific binding to Con A-Sepharose suggested that rod guanylate cyclase is a glycoprotein. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis of purified toad, frog, and bovine enzymes resolved two, three, and five variants, respectively, that differed in isoelectric point. Two variants of toad guanylate cyclase showed differences in various characterizations. These data suggest multiple mechanisms for regulation of guanylate cyclase activity in vertebrate rod photoreceptors. Images PMID:1675787

  7. Rod Photoreceptor Differentiation in Fetal and Infant Human Retina

    PubMed Central

    Hendrickson, Anita; Bumsted-O'Brien, Keely; Natoli, Riccardo; Ramamurthy, Visvanathan; Possin, Daniel; Provis, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Human rods and cones are arranged in a precise spatial mosaic that is critical for optimal functioning of the visual system. However, the molecular processes that underpin specification of cell types within the mosaic are poorly understood. The progressive differentiation of human rods was tracked from fetal week (Fwk) 9 to postnatal (P) 8 months using immunocytochemical markers of key molecules that represent rod progression from post-mitotic precursors to outer segment-bearing functional photoreceptors. We find two phases associated with rod differentiation. The early phase begins in rods on the foveal edge at Fwk 10.5 when rods are first identified, and the rod-specific proteins NRL and NR2e3 are detected. By Fwk 11-12, these rods label for interphotoreceptor retinoid binding protein, recoverin, and aryl hydrocarbon receptor interacting protein-like 1. The second phase occurs over the next month with the appearance of rod opsin at Fwk 15, closely followed by the outer segment proteins rod GTP-gated sodium channel and peripherin. TULP is expressed relatively late at Fwk 18-20 in rods. Each phase proceeds across the retina in a central-peripheral order, such that rods in far peripheral retina are only entering the early phase at the same time that cells in central retina are entering their late phase. During the second half of gestation rods undergo an intracellular reorganization of these proteins, and cellular and OS elongation which continues into infancy. The progression of rod development shown here provides insight into the possible mechanisms underlying human retinal visual dysfunction when there are mutations affecting key rod-related molecules. PMID:18778702

  8. Reliability assessment of a rod photoreceptor outer segment grading system.

    PubMed

    Jablonski, M M; Graney, M J; Kritchevsky, S B; Iannaccone, A

    2001-05-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess the reliability of a rod photoreceptor outer segment (PR-OS) grading system based on the analysis of 1 microm thick retinal sections obtained from Xenopus laevis whole-eye organ cultures. Digitally captured images, representative of the entire spectrum of rod PR-OS organization levels, were selected and coded numerically. A total of 102 individual rod PR-OS profiles were graded according to a six-step classification scheme based on the percentage of rod PR-OS membrane organization. Unweighted (exact agreement) and weighted kappa (kappa) coefficients (for use with ordered categorical rating scales) were calculated. Differences between kappa coefficients were tested for by chi-square analysis. To investigate the intra- and inter-rater variability and the possible presence of an interaction of the measurements with time, a repeated-measures analysis of variance was performed. The overall unweighted and weighted intra-rater kappa coefficients were 0.78 and 0.92, respectively. The overall unweighted and weighted inter-rater kappa coefficients were 0.73 and 0.90, respectively. There was no significant difference between raters or between first and second reading, nor was interaction between raters and time of rating documented. Individual kappa coefficients were equivalent both between raters and between sessions. Intra- and inter-rater agreement was within one step in 100% of cases. The estimated values of the kappa coefficients are consistent with a good to excellent degree of reliability and reproducibility of this rod PR-OS grading system. This system will be useful in the assessment of rod PR-OS morphology in studies of photoreceptor physiology and pathology.

  9. NEURONATIN IS A STRESS-RESPONSIVE PROTEIN OF ROD PHOTORECEPTORS

    PubMed Central

    SHINDE, VISHAL; PITALE, PRIYAMVADA M.; HOWSE, WAYNE; GORBATYUK, OLEG; GORBATYUK, MARINA

    2016-01-01

    Neuronatin (NNAT) is a small transmembrane proteolipid that is highly expressed in the embryonic developing brain and several other peripheral tissues. This study is the first to provide evidence that NNAT is detected in the adult retina of various adult rod-dominant mammals, including wild-type (WT) rodents, transgenic rodents expressing mutant S334ter, P23H, or T17M rhodopsin, non-human primates, humans, and cone-dominant tree shrews. Immunohistochemical and quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) analyses were applied to detect NNAT. Confocal microscopy analysis revealed that NNAT immunofluorescence is restricted to the outer segments (OSs) of photoreceptors without evidence of staining in other retinal cell types across all mammalian species. Moreover, in tree shrew retinas, we found NNAT to be co-localized with rhodopsin, indicating its predominant expression in rods. The rod-derived expression of NNAT was further confirmed by qRT-PCR in isolated rod photoreceptor cells. We also used these cells to mimic cellular stress in transgenic retinas by treating them with the endoplasmic reticulum stress inducer, tunicamycin. Thus, our data revealed accumulation of NNAT around the nucleus as compared to dispersed localization of NNAT within control cells. This distribution coincided with the partial intracellular mislocalization of NNAT to the outer nuclear layer observed in transgenic retinas. In addition, stressed retinas demonstrated an increase of NNAT mRNA and protein levels. Therefore, our study demonstrated that NNAT is a novel stress-responsive protein with a potential structural and/or functional role in adult mammalian retinas. PMID:27109921

  10. Molecular origin of continuous dark noise in rod photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Rieke, F; Baylor, D A

    1996-01-01

    Noise in the rod photoreceptors limits the ability of the dark-adapted visual system to detect dim lights. We investigated the molecular mechanism of the continuous component of the electrical dark noise in toad rods. Membrane current was recorded from intact, isolated rods or truncated, internally dialyzed rod outer segments. The continuous noise was separated from noise due to thermal activation of rhodopsin and to transitions in the cGMP-activated channels. Selectively disabling different elements of the phototransduction cascade allowed examination of their contributions to the continuous noise. These experiments indicate that the noise is generated by spontaneous activation of cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDE) through a process that does not involve transducin. The addition of recombinant gamma, the inhibitory subunit of PDE, did not suppress the noise, indicating that endogenous gamma does not completely dissociate from the catalytic subunit of PDE during spontaneous activation. Quantitative analysis of the noise provided estimates of the rate constants for spontaneous PDE activation and deactivation and the catalytic activity of a single PDE molecule in situ. PMID:8913594

  11. The Giant Mottled Eel, Anguilla marmorata, Uses Blue-Shifted Rod Photoreceptors during Upstream Migration

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Feng-Yu; Fu, Wen-Chun; Wang, I-Li

    2014-01-01

    Catadromous fishes migrate between ocean and freshwater during particular phases of their life cycle. The dramatic environmental changes shape their physiological features, e.g. visual sensitivity, olfactory ability, and salinity tolerance. Anguilla marmorata, a catadromous eel, migrates upstream on dark nights, following the lunar cycle. Such behavior may be correlated with ontogenetic changes in sensory systems. Therefore, this study was designed to identify changes in spectral sensitivity and opsin gene expression of A. marmorata during upstream migration. Microspectrophotometry analysis revealed that the tropical eel possesses a duplex retina with rod and cone photoreceptors. The λmax of rod cells are 493, 489, and 489 nm in glass, yellow, and wild eels, while those of cone cells are 508, and 517 nm in yellow, and wild eels, respectively. Unlike European and American eels, Asian eels exhibited a blue-shifted pattern of rod photoreceptors during upstream migration. Quantitative gene expression analyses of four cloned opsin genes (Rh1f, Rh1d, Rh2, and SWS2) revealed that Rh1f expression is dominant at all three stages, while Rh1d is expressed only in older yellow eel. Furthermore, sequence comparison and protein modeling studies implied that a blue shift in Rh1d opsin may be induced by two known (N83, S292) and four putative (S124, V189, V286, I290) tuning sites adjacent to the retinal binding sites. Finally, expression of blue-shifted Rh1d opsin resulted in a spectral shift in rod photoreceptors. Our observations indicate that the giant mottled eel is color-blind, and its blue-shifted scotopic vision may influence its upstream migration behavior and habitat choice. PMID:25101636

  12. The giant mottled eel, Anguilla marmorata, uses blue-shifted rod photoreceptors during upstream migration.

    PubMed

    Wang, Feng-Yu; Fu, Wen-Chun; Wang, I-Li; Yan, Hong Young; Wang, Tzi-Yuan

    2014-01-01

    Catadromous fishes migrate between ocean and freshwater during particular phases of their life cycle. The dramatic environmental changes shape their physiological features, e.g. visual sensitivity, olfactory ability, and salinity tolerance. Anguilla marmorata, a catadromous eel, migrates upstream on dark nights, following the lunar cycle. Such behavior may be correlated with ontogenetic changes in sensory systems. Therefore, this study was designed to identify changes in spectral sensitivity and opsin gene expression of A. marmorata during upstream migration. Microspectrophotometry analysis revealed that the tropical eel possesses a duplex retina with rod and cone photoreceptors. The λmax of rod cells are 493, 489, and 489 nm in glass, yellow, and wild eels, while those of cone cells are 508, and 517 nm in yellow, and wild eels, respectively. Unlike European and American eels, Asian eels exhibited a blue-shifted pattern of rod photoreceptors during upstream migration. Quantitative gene expression analyses of four cloned opsin genes (Rh1f, Rh1d, Rh2, and SWS2) revealed that Rh1f expression is dominant at all three stages, while Rh1d is expressed only in older yellow eel. Furthermore, sequence comparison and protein modeling studies implied that a blue shift in Rh1d opsin may be induced by two known (N83, S292) and four putative (S124, V189, V286, I290) tuning sites adjacent to the retinal binding sites. Finally, expression of blue-shifted Rh1d opsin resulted in a spectral shift in rod photoreceptors. Our observations indicate that the giant mottled eel is color-blind, and its blue-shifted scotopic vision may influence its upstream migration behavior and habitat choice.

  13. Rod photoreceptors drive circadian photoentrainment across a wide range of light intensities

    PubMed Central

    Altimus, C.M.; Güler, A.D.; Alam, N.M.; Arman, A.C.; Prusky, G.T.; Sampath, A.P.; Hattar, S

    2010-01-01

    In mammals, synchronization of the circadian pacemaker in the hypothalamus is achieved through direct input from the eyes conveyed by intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs). Circadian photoentrainment can be maintained by rod and cone photoreceptors, but their functional contributions and their retinal circuits that impinge on ipRGCs are not well understood. We demonstrate in genetic mouse models lacking functional rods, or where rods are the only functional photoreceptors, that rods are solely responsible for photoentrainment at scotopic light intensities. Surprisingly, rods were also capable of driving circadian photoentrainment at photopic intensities where they were incapable of supporting a visually–guided behavior. Using animals in which cone photoreceptors were ablated, we demonstrate that rods signal through cones at high light intensities, but not low light intensities. Thus two distinct retinal circuits drive ipRGC function to support circadian photoentrainment across a wide range of light intensities. PMID:20711184

  14. Multiple rod-cone and cone-rod photoreceptor transmutations in snakes: evidence from visual opsin gene expression.

    PubMed

    Simões, Bruno F; Sampaio, Filipa L; Loew, Ellis R; Sanders, Kate L; Fisher, Robert N; Hart, Nathan S; Hunt, David M; Partridge, Julian C; Gower, David J

    2016-01-27

    In 1934, Gordon Walls forwarded his radical theory of retinal photoreceptor 'transmutation'. This proposed that rods and cones used for scotopic and photopic vision, respectively, were not fixed but could evolve into each other via a series of morphologically distinguishable intermediates. Walls' prime evidence came from series of diurnal and nocturnal geckos and snakes that appeared to have pure-cone or pure-rod retinas (in forms that Walls believed evolved from ancestors with the reverse complement) or which possessed intermediate photoreceptor cells. Walls was limited in testing his theory because the precise identity of visual pigments present in photoreceptors was then unknown. Subsequent molecular research has hitherto neglected this topic but presents new opportunities. We identify three visual opsin genes, rh1, sws1 and lws, in retinal mRNA of an ecologically and taxonomically diverse sample of snakes central to Walls' theory. We conclude that photoreceptors with superficially rod- or cone-like morphology are not limited to containing scotopic or photopic opsins, respectively. Walls' theory is essentially correct, and more research is needed to identify the patterns, processes and functional implications of transmutation. Future research will help to clarify the fundamental properties and physiology of photoreceptors adapted to function in different light levels.

  15. Feedback from horizontal cells to rod photoreceptors in vertebrate retina

    PubMed Central

    Thoreson, Wallace B.; Babai, Norbert; Bartoletti, Theodore M.

    2013-01-01

    Retinal horizontal cells (HCs) provide negative feedback to cones but, largely because annular illumination fails to evoke a depolarizing response in rods, it is widely believed that there is no feedback from HCs to rods. However, feedback from HCs to cones involves small changes in the calcium current (ICa) that does not always generate detectable depolarizing responses. We therefore recorded ICa directly from rods to test whether they were modulated by feedback from HCs. To circumvent problems presented by overlapping receptive fields of HCs and rods, we manipulated the membrane potential of voltage clamped HCs while simultaneously recording from rods in a salamander retinal slice preparation. Like HC feedback in cones, hyperpolarizing HCs from −14 to −54, −84, and −104 mV increased the amplitude of ICa recorded from synaptically connected rods and caused hyperpolarizing shifts in ICa voltage dependence. These effects were blocked by supplementing the bicarbonate-buffered saline solution with HEPES. In rods lacking light-responsive outer segments, hyperpolarizing neighboring HCs with light caused a negative activation shift and increased the amplitude of ICa. These changes in ICa were blocked by HEPES and by inhibiting HC light responses with a glutamate antagonist indicating they were due to HC feedback. These results show that rods, like cones, receive negative feedback from HCs that regulates the amplitude and voltage dependence of ICa. HC to rod feedback counters light-evoked decreases in synaptic output and thus shapes the transmission of rod responses to downstream visual neurons. PMID:18509030

  16. Rod photoreceptors protect from cone degeneration-induced retinal remodeling and restore visual responses in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Saade, Carole J.; Alvarez-Delfin, Karen; Fadool, James M.

    2013-01-01

    Humans are largely dependent upon cone-mediated vision. However, death or dysfunction of rods, the predominant photoreceptor subtype, results in secondary loss of cones, remodeling of retinal circuitry and blindness. The changes in circuitry may contribute to the vision deficit and undermine attempts at restoring sight. We exploit zebrafish larvae as a genetic model to specifically characterize changes associated with photoreceptor degenerations in a cone-dominated retina. Photoreceptors form synapses with two types of second order neurons, bipolar cells and horizontal cells. Using cell-specific reporter gene expression and immunolabeling for postsynaptic glutamate receptors, significant remodeling is observed following cone degeneration in the pde6cw59 larval retina but not rod degeneration in the Xops:mCFPq13 line. In adults, rods and cones are present in approximately equal numbers, and in pde6cw59 mutants glutamate receptor expression and synaptic structures in the outer plexiform layer are preserved, and visual responses are gained in these once-blind fish. We propose that the abundance of rods in the adult protects the retina from cone degeneration-induced remodeling. We test this hypothesis by genetically manipulating the number of rods in larvae. We show that an increased number and uniform distribution of rods in lor/tbx2bp22bbtl or six7 morpholino-injected larvae protect from pde6cw59-induced secondary changes. The observations that remodeling is a common consequence of photoreceptor death across species, and that in zebrafish a small number of surviving photoreceptors afford protection from degeneration-induced changes provides a model for systematic analysis of factors that slow or even prevent the secondary deteriorations associated with neural degenerative disease. PMID:23365220

  17. 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.

  18. Depletion of calcium stores regulates calcium influx and signal transmission in rod photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Szikra, Tamas; Cusato, Karen; Thoreson, Wallace B; Barabas, Peter; Bartoletti, Theodore M; Krizaj, David

    2008-01-01

    Tonic synapses are specialized for sustained calcium entry and transmitter release, allowing them to operate in a graded fashion over a wide dynamic range. We identified a novel plasma membrane calcium entry mechanism that extends the range of rod photoreceptor signalling into light-adapted conditions. The mechanism, which shares molecular and physiological characteristics with store-operated calcium entry (SOCE), is required to maintain baseline [Ca2+]i in rod inner segments and synaptic terminals. Sustained Ca2+ entry into rod cytosol is augmented by store depletion, blocked by La3+ and Gd3+ and suppressed by organic antagonists MRS-1845 and SKF-96365. Store depletion and the subsequent Ca2+ influx directly stimulated exocytosis in terminals of light-adapted rods loaded with the activity-dependent dye FM1–43. Moreover, SOCE blockers suppressed rod-mediated synaptic inputs to horizontal cells without affecting presynaptic voltage-operated Ca2+ entry. Silencing of TRPC1 expression with small interference RNA disrupted SOCE in rods, but had no effect on cone Ca2+ signalling. Rods were immunopositive for TRPC1 whereas cone inner segments immunostained with TRPC6 channel antibodies. Thus, SOCE modulates Ca2+ homeostasis and light-evoked neurotransmission at the rod photoreceptor synapse mediated by TRPC1. PMID:18755743

  19. Dopamine receptor loss of function is not protective of rd1 rod photoreceptors in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Hakenewerth, Angela M.; Gardner, Rachel R.; Martak, Joshua G.; Maggio, Virginia M.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose The retinal degeneration (rd1) mouse undergoes a rapid loss of rod photoreceptors due to a defect in the cGMP-phosphodiesterase gene. We have previously demonstrated that dopamine (DA) antagonists or DA depletion blocks photoreceptor degeneration and that DA is necessary for photoreceptor degeneration in the rd1 mouse retinal organ culture model. Antagonists for either D1- or D2-family DA receptors are protective in rd1 organ cultures. Methods To determine whether photoreceptor survival can be increased in vivo in the rd1 mouse, we used both a pharmacological and a genetic approach. The pharmacological approach involved three techniques to administer 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) in an attempt to deplete DA in postnatal mouse retina in vivo. As a genetic alternative, DA receptor signaling was inactivated by crossbreeding rd1 mice to D1, D2, D4, and D5 knockout mice to create four lines of double mutants. Results Pharmacological DA depletion was incomplete due to the limiting size of the postnatal mouse eye and the lethality of systemic inhibition of DA signaling. In all four lines of double mutants, no increase in rod photoreceptor survival was observed. To determine whether protection of rd1 photoreceptors by inhibition of dopaminergic signaling is a result of conditions specific to the organ culture environment, we grew in vitro retinas from the four lines of double mutant mice for four weeks. Again, no increase in photoreceptor survival was seen. Finally, three triple mutants were generated that lacked two DA receptors (D1/D2; D1/D4; and D2/D4) on a rd1 background. In all three cases, rod photoreceptors were not protected from degeneration. Conclusions The dramatic protection of rd1 rod photoreceptors by inhibition of DA signaling in organ culture has not been reproduced in vivo by either a pharmacological approach, due to technical limitations, or by genetic manipulations. The possible role of compensatory effects during retinal development in DA receptor

  20. Transcriptional Regulation of Rod Photoreceptor Homeostasis Revealed by In Vivo NRL Targetome Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Hong; Kim, Douglas S.; Klocke, Bernward; Johnson, Kory R.; Cui, Kairong; Gotoh, Norimoto; Zang, Chongzhi; Gregorski, Janina; Gieser, Linn; Peng, Weiqun; Fann, Yang; Seifert, Martin; Zhao, Keji; Swaroop, Anand

    2012-01-01

    A stringent control of homeostasis is critical for functional maintenance and survival of neurons. In the mammalian retina, the basic motif leucine zipper transcription factor NRL determines rod versus cone photoreceptor cell fate and activates the expression of many rod-specific genes. Here, we report an integrated analysis of NRL-centered gene regulatory network by coupling chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by high-throughput sequencing (ChIP–Seq) data from Illumina and ABI platforms with global expression profiling and in vivo knockdown studies. We identified approximately 300 direct NRL target genes. Of these, 22 NRL targets are associated with human retinal dystrophies, whereas 95 mapped to regions of as yet uncloned retinal disease loci. In silico analysis of NRL ChIP–Seq peak sequences revealed an enrichment of distinct sets of transcription factor binding sites. Specifically, we discovered that genes involved in photoreceptor function include binding sites for both NRL and homeodomain protein CRX. Evaluation of 26 ChIP–Seq regions validated their enhancer functions in reporter assays. In vivo knockdown of 16 NRL target genes resulted in death or abnormal morphology of rod photoreceptors, suggesting their importance in maintaining retinal function. We also identified histone demethylase Kdm5b as a novel secondary node in NRL transcriptional hierarchy. Exon array analysis of flow-sorted photoreceptors in which Kdm5b was knocked down by shRNA indicated its role in regulating rod-expressed genes. Our studies identify candidate genes for retinal dystrophies, define cis-regulatory module(s) for photoreceptor-expressed genes and provide a framework for decoding transcriptional regulatory networks that dictate rod homeostasis. PMID:22511886

  1. In vivo imaging of the human rod photoreceptor mosaic

    PubMed Central

    Doble, Nathan; Choi, Stacey S.; Codona, Johanan L.; Christou, Julian; Enoch, Jay M.; Williams, David R.

    2011-01-01

    Although single cone receptors have been imaged in the living human eye, there has been no observation of rods in vivo. Using an adaptive optics (AO) ophthalmoscope and post processing, evidence of rod mosaic was observed at 5° and 10° eccentricities in the horizontal, temporal retina. For 4 normal human subjects, small structures were observed in between the larger cones, and were observed repeatedly at the same locations on different days and with varying wavelengths. Image analysis gave spacings that agree well with rod measurements from histological data. PMID:21209677

  2. Direct Evidence for Daily Plasticity of Electrical Coupling between Rod Photoreceptors in the Mammalian Retina

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Nan Ge

    2016-01-01

    Rod photoreceptors are electrically coupled through gap junctions. Coupling is a key determinant of their light response properties, but whether rod electrical coupling is dynamically regulated remains elusive and controversial. Here, we have obtained direct measurements of the conductance between adjacent rods in mouse retina and present evidence that rod electrical coupling strength is dependent on the time of day, the lighting conditions, and the mouse strain. Specifically, we show in CBA/Ca mice that under circadian conditions, the rod junctional conductance has a median value of 98 pS during the subjective day and of 493 pS during the subjective night. In C57BL/6 mice, the median junctional conductance between dark-adapted rods is ∼140 pS, regardless of the time in the circadian cycle. Adaptation to bright light decreases the rod junctional conductance to ∼0 pS, regardless of the time of day or the mouse strain. Together, these results establish the high degree of plasticity of rod electrical coupling over the course of the day. Estimates of the rod coupling strength will provide a foundation for further investigations of rod interactions and the role of rod coupling in the ability of the visual system to anticipate, assimilate, and respond to the daily changes in ambient light intensity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Many cells in the CNS communicate via gap junctions, or electrical synapses, the regulation of which remains largely unknown. Here, we show that the strength of electrical coupling between rod photoreceptors of the retina is regulated by the time of day and the lighting conditions. This mechanism may help us understand some key aspects of day and night vision as well as some visual malfunctions. PMID:26740659

  3. Dynamic near-infrared imaging reveals transient phototropic change in retinal rod photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Lu, Rongwen; Levy, Alexander M; Zhang, Qiuxiang; Pittler, Steven J; Yao, Xincheng

    2013-10-01

    Stiles-Crawford effect (SCE) is exclusively observed in cone photoreceptors, but why the SCE is absent in rod photoreceptors is still a mystery. In this study, we employed dynamic near infrared light imaging to monitor photoreceptor kinetics in freshly isolated frog and mouse retinas stimulated by oblique visible light flashes. It was observed that retinal rods could rapidly (onset: ∼10 ms for frog and 5 ms for mouse; time-to-peak: ∼200 ms for frog and 30 ms for mouse) shift toward the direction of the visible light, which might quickly compensate for the loss of luminous efficiency due to oblique illumination. In contrast, such directional movement was negligible in retinal cones. Moreover, transient rod phototropism could contribute to characteristic intrinsic optical signal (IOS). We anticipate that further study of the transient rod phototropism may not only provide insight into better understanding of the nature of vision but also promise an IOS biomarker for functional mapping of rod physiology at high resolution.

  4. Evolutionary transformation of rod photoreceptors in the all-cone retina of a diurnal garter snake.

    PubMed

    Schott, Ryan K; Müller, Johannes; Yang, Clement G Y; Bhattacharyya, Nihar; Chan, Natalie; Xu, Mengshu; Morrow, James M; Ghenu, Ana-Hermina; Loew, Ellis R; Tropepe, Vincent; Chang, Belinda S W

    2016-01-12

    Vertebrate retinas are generally composed of rod (dim-light) and cone (bright-light) photoreceptors with distinct morphologies that evolved as adaptations to nocturnal/crepuscular and diurnal light environments. Over 70 years ago, the "transmutation" theory was proposed to explain some of the rare exceptions in which a photoreceptor type is missing, suggesting that photoreceptors could evolutionarily transition between cell types. Although studies have shown support for this theory in nocturnal geckos, the origins of all-cone retinas, such as those found in diurnal colubrid snakes, remain a mystery. Here we investigate the evolutionary fate of the rods in a diurnal garter snake and test two competing hypotheses: (i) that the rods, and their corresponding molecular machinery, were lost or (ii) that the rods were evolutionarily modified to resemble, and function, as cones. Using multiple approaches, we find evidence for a functional and unusually blue-shifted rhodopsin that is expressed in small single "cones." Moreover, these cones express rod transducin and have rod ultrastructural features, providing strong support for the hypothesis that they are not true cones, as previously thought, but rather are modified rods. Several intriguing features of garter snake rhodopsin are suggestive of a more cone-like function. We propose that these cone-like rods may have evolved to regain spectral sensitivity and chromatic discrimination as a result of ancestral losses of middle-wavelength cone opsins in early snake evolution. This study illustrates how sensory evolution can be shaped not only by environmental constraints but also by historical contingency in forming new cell types with convergent functionality. PMID:26715746

  5. Evolutionary transformation of rod photoreceptors in the all-cone retina of a diurnal garter snake

    PubMed Central

    Schott, Ryan K.; Müller, Johannes; Yang, Clement G. Y.; Bhattacharyya, Nihar; Chan, Natalie; Xu, Mengshu; Morrow, James M.; Ghenu, Ana-Hermina; Loew, Ellis R.; Tropepe, Vincent; Chang, Belinda S. W.

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrate retinas are generally composed of rod (dim-light) and cone (bright-light) photoreceptors with distinct morphologies that evolved as adaptations to nocturnal/crepuscular and diurnal light environments. Over 70 years ago, the “transmutation” theory was proposed to explain some of the rare exceptions in which a photoreceptor type is missing, suggesting that photoreceptors could evolutionarily transition between cell types. Although studies have shown support for this theory in nocturnal geckos, the origins of all-cone retinas, such as those found in diurnal colubrid snakes, remain a mystery. Here we investigate the evolutionary fate of the rods in a diurnal garter snake and test two competing hypotheses: (i) that the rods, and their corresponding molecular machinery, were lost or (ii) that the rods were evolutionarily modified to resemble, and function, as cones. Using multiple approaches, we find evidence for a functional and unusually blue-shifted rhodopsin that is expressed in small single “cones.” Moreover, these cones express rod transducin and have rod ultrastructural features, providing strong support for the hypothesis that they are not true cones, as previously thought, but rather are modified rods. Several intriguing features of garter snake rhodopsin are suggestive of a more cone-like function. We propose that these cone-like rods may have evolved to regain spectral sensitivity and chromatic discrimination as a result of ancestral losses of middle-wavelength cone opsins in early snake evolution. This study illustrates how sensory evolution can be shaped not only by environmental constraints but also by historical contingency in forming new cell types with convergent functionality. PMID:26715746

  6. Three-dimensional retinal organoids from mouse pluripotent stem cells mimic in vivo development with enhanced stratification and rod photoreceptor differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Holly Yu; Kaya, Koray Dogan; Dong, Lijin

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The generation of three-dimensional (3D) organoids with optic cup–like structures from pluripotent stem cells has created opportunities for investigating mammalian retinal development in vitro. However, retinal organoids in culture do not completely reflect the developmental state and in vivo architecture of the rod-dominant mouse retina. The goals of this study were to develop an efficient protocol for generating retinal organoids from stem cells and examine the morphogenesis of rods in vitro. Methods To assess rod photoreceptor differentiation in retinal organoids, we took advantage of Nrl-green fluorescent protein (GFP) mice that show rod-specific expression of GFP directed by the promoter of leucine zipper transcription factor NRL. Using embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells (ESCs and iPSCs, respectively) derived from the Nrl-GFP mouse, we were successful in establishing long-term retinal organoid cultures using modified culture conditions (called High Efficiency Hypoxia Induced Generation of Photoreceptors in Retinal Organoids, or HIPRO). Results We demonstrated efficient differentiation of pluripotent stem cells to retinal structures. More than 70% of embryoid bodies formed optic vesicles at day (D) 7, >50% produced optic cups by D10, and most of them survived until at least D35. The HIPRO organoids included distinct inner retina neurons in a somewhat stratified architecture and mature Müller glia spanning the entire retina. Almost 70% of the cells in the retinal organoids were rod photoreceptors that exhibited elongated cilia. Transcriptome profiles of GFP+ rod photoreceptors, purified from organoids at D25–35, demonstrated a high correlation with the gene profiles of purified rods from the mouse retina at P2 to P6, indicating their early state of differentiation. Conclusions The 3D retinal organoids, generated by HIPRO method, closely mimic in vivo retinogenesis and provide an efficient in vitro model to investigate photoreceptor

  7. Three-dimensional retinal organoids from mouse pluripotent stem cells mimic in vivo development with enhanced stratification and rod photoreceptor differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Holly Yu; Kaya, Koray Dogan; Dong, Lijin

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The generation of three-dimensional (3D) organoids with optic cup–like structures from pluripotent stem cells has created opportunities for investigating mammalian retinal development in vitro. However, retinal organoids in culture do not completely reflect the developmental state and in vivo architecture of the rod-dominant mouse retina. The goals of this study were to develop an efficient protocol for generating retinal organoids from stem cells and examine the morphogenesis of rods in vitro. Methods To assess rod photoreceptor differentiation in retinal organoids, we took advantage of Nrl-green fluorescent protein (GFP) mice that show rod-specific expression of GFP directed by the promoter of leucine zipper transcription factor NRL. Using embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells (ESCs and iPSCs, respectively) derived from the Nrl-GFP mouse, we were successful in establishing long-term retinal organoid cultures using modified culture conditions (called High Efficiency Hypoxia Induced Generation of Photoreceptors in Retinal Organoids, or HIPRO). Results We demonstrated efficient differentiation of pluripotent stem cells to retinal structures. More than 70% of embryoid bodies formed optic vesicles at day (D) 7, >50% produced optic cups by D10, and most of them survived until at least D35. The HIPRO organoids included distinct inner retina neurons in a somewhat stratified architecture and mature Müller glia spanning the entire retina. Almost 70% of the cells in the retinal organoids were rod photoreceptors that exhibited elongated cilia. Transcriptome profiles of GFP+ rod photoreceptors, purified from organoids at D25–35, demonstrated a high correlation with the gene profiles of purified rods from the mouse retina at P2 to P6, indicating their early state of differentiation. Conclusions The 3D retinal organoids, generated by HIPRO method, closely mimic in vivo retinogenesis and provide an efficient in vitro model to investigate photoreceptor

  8. LIM Kinase, a Newly Identified Regulator of Presynaptic Remodeling by Rod Photoreceptors After Injury

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Weiwei; Townes-Anderson, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Rod photoreceptors retract their axon terminals and develop neuritic sprouts in response to retinal detachment and reattachment, respectively. This study examines the role of LIM kinase (LIMK), a component of RhoA and Rac pathways, in the presynaptic structural remodeling of rod photoreceptors. Methods Phosphorylated LIMK (p-LIMK), the active form of LIMK, was examined in salamander retina with Western blot and confocal microscopy. Axon length within the first 7 hours and process growth after 3 days of culture were assessed in isolated rod photoreceptors treated with inhibitors of upstream regulators ROCK and p21-activated kinase (Pak) (Y27632 and IPA-3) and a direct LIMK inhibitor (BMS-5). Porcine retinal explants were also treated with BMS-5 and analyzed 24 hours after detachment. Because Ca2+ influx contributes to axonal retraction, L-type channels were blocked in some experiments with nicardipine. Results Phosphorylated LIMK is present in rod terminals during retraction and in newly formed processes. Axonal retraction over 7 hours was significantly reduced by inhibition of LIMK or its regulators, ROCK and Pak. Process growth was reduced by LIMK or Pak inhibition especially at the basal (axon-bearing) region of the rod cells. Combining Ca2+ channel and LIMK inhibition had no additional effect on retraction but did further inhibit sprouting after 3 days. In detached porcine retina, LIMK inhibition reduced rod axonal retraction and improved retinal morphology. Conclusions Thus structural remodeling, in the form of either axonal retraction or neuritic growth, requires LIMK activity. LIM kinase inhibition may have therapeutic potential for reducing pathologic rod terminal plasticity after retinal injury. PMID:26658506

  9. Cone Photoreceptors Develop Normally in the Absence of Functional Rod Photoreceptors in a Transgenic Swine Model of Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez de Castro, Juan P.; Scott, Patrick A.; Fransen, James W.; Demas, James; DeMarco, Paul J.; Kaplan, Henry J.; McCall, Maureen A.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. Human and swine retinas have morphological and functional similarities. In the absence of primate models, the swine is an attractive model to study retinal function and disease, with its cone-rich visual streak, our ability to manipulate their genome, and the differences in susceptibility of rod and cone photoreceptors to disease. We characterized the normal development of cone function and its subsequent decline in a P23H rhodopsin transgenic (TgP23H) miniswine model of autosomal dominant RP. Methods. Semen from TgP23H miniswine 53-1 inseminated domestic swine and produced TgP23H and Wt hybrid littermates. Retinal function was evaluated using ERGs between postnatal days (P) 14 and 120. Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) responses were recorded to full-field stimuli at several intensities. Retinal morphology was assessed using light and electron microscopy. Results. Scotopic retinal function matures in Wt pigs up to P60, but never develops in TgP23H pigs. Wt and TgP23H photopic vision matures similarly up to P30 and diverges at P60 where TgP23H cone vision declines. There are fewer TgP23H RGCs with visually evoked responses at all ages and their response to light is compromised. Photoreceptor morphological changes mirror these functional changes. Conclusions. Lack of early scotopic function in TgP23H swine suggests it as a model of an aggressive form of RP. In this mammalian model of RP, normal cone function develops independent of rod function. Therefore, its retina represents a system in which therapies to rescue cones can be developed to prolong photopic visual function in RP patients. PMID:24618325

  10. An alternative pathway for rod signals in the rodent retina: rod photoreceptors, cone bipolar cells, and the localization of glutamate receptors.

    PubMed

    Hack, I; Peichl, L; Brandstätter, J H

    1999-11-23

    In the mammalian retina, extensive processing of spatiotemporal and chromatic information occurs. One key principle in signal transfer through the retina is parallel processing. Two of these parallel pathways are the ON- and OFF-channels transmitting light and dark signals. This dual system is created in the outer plexiform layer, the first relay station in retinal signal transfer. Photoreceptors release glutamate onto ON- and OFF-type bipolar cells, which are functionally distinguished by their postsynaptic expression of different types of glutamate receptors, namely ionotropic and metabotropic glutamate receptors. In the current concept, rod photoreceptors connect only to rod bipolar cells (ON-type) and cone photoreceptors connect only to cone bipolar cells (ON- and OFF-type). We have studied the distribution of (RS)-alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) glutamate receptor subunits at the synapses in the outer plexiform layer of the rodent retina by immunoelectron microscopy and serial section reconstruction. We report a non-classical synaptic contact and an alternative pathway for rod signals in the retina. Rod photoreceptors made synaptic contact with putative OFF-cone bipolar cells that expressed the AMPA glutamate receptor subunits GluR1 and GluR2 on their dendrites. Thus, in the retina of mouse and rat, an alternative pathway for rod signals exists, where rod photoreceptors bypass the rod bipolar cell and directly excite OFF-cone bipolar cells through an ionotropic sign-conserving AMPA glutamate receptor.

  11. Low-conductance HCN1 ion channels augment the frequency response of rod and cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Barrow, Andrew J; Wu, Samuel M

    2009-05-01

    Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) ion channels are expressed in several tissues throughout the body, including the heart, the CNS, and the retina. HCN channels are found in many neurons in the retina, but their most established role is in generating the hyperpolarization-activated current, I(h), in photoreceptors. This current makes the light response of rod and cone photoreceptors more transient, an effect similar to that of a high-pass filter. A unique property of HCN channels is their small single-channel current, which is below the thermal noise threshold of measuring electronics. We use nonstationary fluctuation analysis (NSFA) in the intact retina to estimate the conductance of single HCN channels, revealing a conductance of approximately 650 fS in both rod and cone photoreceptors. We also analyze the properties of HCN channels in salamander rods and cones, from the biophysical to the functional level, showing that HCN1 is the predominant isoform in both cells, and demonstrate how HCN1 channels speed up the light response of both rods and cones under distinct adaptational conditions. We show that in rods and cones, HCN channels increase the natural frequency response of single cells by modifying the photocurrent input, which is limited in its frequency response by the speed of a molecular signaling cascade. In doing so, HCN channels form the first of several systems in the retina that augment the speed of the visual response, allowing an animal to perceive visual stimuli that change more quickly than the underlying photocurrent. PMID:19420251

  12. Rod Photoreceptors Express GPR55 in the Adult Vervet Monkey Retina

    PubMed Central

    Bouskila, Joseph; Javadi, Pasha; Casanova, Christian; Ptito, Maurice; Bouchard, Jean-François

    2013-01-01

    Cannabinoids exert their actions mainly through two receptors, the cannabinoid CB1 receptor (CB1R) and cannabinoid CB2 receptor (CB2R). In recent years, the G-protein coupled receptor 55 (GPR55) was suggested as a cannabinoid receptor based on its activation by anandamide and tetrahydrocannabinol. Yet, its formal classification is still a matter of debate. CB1R and CB2R expression patterns are well described for rodent and monkey retinas. In the monkey retina, CB1R has been localized in its neural (cone photoreceptor, horizontal, bipolar, amacrine and ganglion cells) and CB2R in glial components (Müller cells). The aim of this study was to determine the expression pattern of GPR55 in the monkey retina by using confocal microscopy. Our results show that GPR55 is strictly localized in the photoreceptor layer of the extrafoveal portion of the retina. Co-immunolabeling of GPR55 with rhodopsin, the photosensitive pigment in rods, revealed a clear overlap of expression throughout the rod structure with most prominent staining in the inner segments. Additionally, double-label of GPR55 with calbindin, a specific marker for cone photoreceptors in the primate retina, allowed us to exclude expression of GPR55 in cones. The labeling of GPR55 in rods was further assessed with a 3D visualization in the XZ and YZ planes thus confirming its exclusive expression in rods. These results provide data on the distribution of GPR55 in the monkey retina, different than CB1R and CB2R. The presence of GPR55 in rods suggests a function of this receptor in scotopic vision that needs to be demonstrated. PMID:24244730

  13. Role of guanylate cyclase-activating proteins (GCAPs) in setting the flash sensitivity of rod photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Mendez, Ana; Burns, Marie E.; Sokal, Izabela; Dizhoor, Alexander M.; Baehr, Wolfgang; Palczewski, Krzysztof; Baylor, Denis A.; Chen, Jeannie

    2001-01-01

    The retina's photoreceptor cells adjust their sensitivity to allow photons to be transduced over a wide range of light intensities. One mechanism thought to participate in sensitivity adjustments is Ca2+ regulation of guanylate cyclase (GC) by guanylate cyclase-activating proteins (GCAPs). We evaluated the contribution of GCAPs to sensitivity regulation in rods by disrupting their expression in transgenic mice. The GC activity from GCAPs−/− retinas showed no Ca2+ dependence, indicating that Ca2+ regulation of GCs had indeed been abolished. Flash responses from dark-adapted GCAPs−/− rods were larger and slower than responses from wild-type rods. In addition, the incremental flash sensitivity of GCAPs−/− rods failed to be maintained at wild-type levels in bright steady light. GCAP2 expressed in GCAPs−/− rods restored maximal light-induced GC activity but did not restore normal flash response kinetics. We conclude that GCAPs strongly regulate GC activity in mouse rods, decreasing the flash sensitivity in darkness and increasing the incremental flash sensitivity in bright steady light, thereby extending the rod's operating range. PMID:11493703

  14. 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.

  15. Mechanism for Selective Synaptic Wiring of Rod Photoreceptors into the Retinal Circuitry and Its Role in Vision.

    PubMed

    Cao, Yan; Sarria, Ignacio; Fehlhaber, Katherine E; Kamasawa, Naomi; Orlandi, Cesare; James, Kiely N; Hazen, Jennifer L; Gardner, Matthew R; Farzan, Michael; Lee, Amy; Baker, Sheila; Baldwin, Kristin; Sampath, Alapakkam P; Martemyanov, Kirill A

    2015-09-23

    In the retina, rod and cone photoreceptors form distinct connections with different classes of downstream bipolar cells. However, the molecular mechanisms responsible for their selective connectivity are unknown. Here we identify a cell-adhesion protein, ELFN1, to be essential for the formation of synapses between rods and rod ON-bipolar cells in the primary rod pathway. ELFN1 is expressed selectively in rods where it is targeted to the axonal terminals by the synaptic release machinery. At the synapse, ELFN1 binds in trans to mGluR6, the postsynaptic receptor on rod ON-bipolar cells. Elimination of ELFN1 in mice prevents the formation of synaptic contacts involving rods, but not cones, allowing a dissection of the contributions of primary and secondary rod pathways to retinal circuit function and vision. We conclude that ELFN1 is necessary for the selective wiring of rods into the primary rod pathway and is required for high sensitivity of vision.

  16. Two-photon microscopy reveals early rod photoreceptor cell damage in light-exposed mutant mice

    PubMed Central

    Maeda, Akiko; Palczewska, Grazyna; Golczak, Marcin; Kohno, Hideo; Dong, Zhiqian; Maeda, Tadao; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2014-01-01

    Atrophic age-related and juvenile macular degeneration are especially devastating due to lack of an effective cure. Two retinal cell types, photoreceptor cells and the adjacent retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE), reportedly display the earliest pathological changes. Abca4−/−Rdh8−/− mice, which mimic many features of human retinal degeneration, allowed us to determine the sequence of light-induced events leading to retinal degeneration. Using two-photon microscopy with 3D reconstruction methodology, we observed an initial strong retinoid-derived fluorescence and expansion of Abca4−/−Rdh8−/− mouse rod cell outer segments accompanied by macrophage infiltration after brief exposure of the retina to bright light. Additionally, light-dependent fluorescent compounds produced in rod outer segments were not transferred to the RPE of mice genetically defective in RPE phagocytosis. Collectively, these findings suggest that for light-induced retinopathies in mice, rod photoreceptors are the primary site of toxic retinoid accumulation and degeneration, followed by secondary changes in the RPE. PMID:24706832

  17. Recruitment of Rod Photoreceptors from Short-Wavelength-Sensitive Cones during the Evolution of Nocturnal Vision in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jung-Woong; Yang, Hyun-Jin; Oel, Adam Phillip; Brooks, Matthew John; Jia, Li; Plachetzki, David Charles; Li, Wei; Allison, William Ted; Swaroop, Anand

    2016-06-20

    Vertebrate ancestors had only cone-like photoreceptors. The duplex retina evolved in jawless vertebrates with the advent of highly photosensitive rod-like photoreceptors. Despite cones being the arbiters of high-resolution color vision, rods emerged as the dominant photoreceptor in mammals during a nocturnal phase early in their evolution. We investigated the evolutionary and developmental origins of rods in two divergent vertebrate retinas. In mice, we discovered genetic and epigenetic vestiges of short-wavelength cones in developing rods, and cell-lineage tracing validated the genesis of rods from S cones. Curiously, rods did not derive from S cones in zebrafish. Our study illuminates several questions regarding the evolution of duplex retina and supports the hypothesis that, in mammals, the S-cone lineage was recruited via the Maf-family transcription factor NRL to augment rod photoreceptors. We propose that this developmental mechanism allowed the adaptive exploitation of scotopic niches during the nocturnal bottleneck early in mammalian evolution.

  18. Recruitment of Rod Photoreceptors from Short-Wavelength-Sensitive Cones during the Evolution of Nocturnal Vision in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jung-Woong; Yang, Hyun-Jin; Oel, Adam Phillip; Brooks, Matthew John; Jia, Li; Plachetzki, David Charles; Li, Wei; Allison, William Ted; Swaroop, Anand

    2016-06-20

    Vertebrate ancestors had only cone-like photoreceptors. The duplex retina evolved in jawless vertebrates with the advent of highly photosensitive rod-like photoreceptors. Despite cones being the arbiters of high-resolution color vision, rods emerged as the dominant photoreceptor in mammals during a nocturnal phase early in their evolution. We investigated the evolutionary and developmental origins of rods in two divergent vertebrate retinas. In mice, we discovered genetic and epigenetic vestiges of short-wavelength cones in developing rods, and cell-lineage tracing validated the genesis of rods from S cones. Curiously, rods did not derive from S cones in zebrafish. Our study illuminates several questions regarding the evolution of duplex retina and supports the hypothesis that, in mammals, the S-cone lineage was recruited via the Maf-family transcription factor NRL to augment rod photoreceptors. We propose that this developmental mechanism allowed the adaptive exploitation of scotopic niches during the nocturnal bottleneck early in mammalian evolution. PMID:27326930

  19. Mechanisms, pools, and sites of spontaneous vesicle release at synapses of rod and cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Cork, Karlene M; Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2016-08-01

    Photoreceptors have depolarized resting potentials that stimulate calcium-dependent release continuously from a large vesicle pool but neurons can also release vesicles without stimulation. We characterized the Ca(2+) dependence, vesicle pools, and release sites involved in spontaneous release at photoreceptor ribbon synapses. In whole-cell recordings from light-adapted horizontal cells (HCs) of tiger salamander retina, we detected miniature excitatory post-synaptic currents (mEPSCs) when no stimulation was applied to promote exocytosis. Blocking Ca(2+) influx by lowering extracellular Ca(2+) , by application of Cd(2+) and other agents reduced the frequency of mEPSCs but did not eliminate them, indicating that mEPSCs can occur independently of Ca(2+) . We also measured release presynaptically from rods and cones by examining quantal glutamate transporter anion currents. Presynaptic quantal event frequency was reduced by Cd(2+) or by increased intracellular Ca(2+) buffering in rods, but not in cones, that were voltage clamped at -70 mV. By inhibiting the vesicle cycle with bafilomycin, we found the frequency of mEPSCs declined more rapidly than the amplitude of evoked excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) suggesting a possible separation between vesicle pools in evoked and spontaneous exocytosis. We mapped sites of Ca(2+) -independent release using total internal reflectance fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy to visualize fusion of individual vesicles loaded with dextran-conjugated pHrodo. Spontaneous release in rods occurred more frequently at non-ribbon sites than evoked release events. The function of Ca(2+) -independent spontaneous release at continuously active photoreceptor synapses remains unclear, but the low frequency of spontaneous quanta limits their impact on noise.

  20. Mechanisms, pools, and sites of spontaneous vesicle release at synapses of rod and cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Cork, Karlene M; Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2016-08-01

    Photoreceptors have depolarized resting potentials that stimulate calcium-dependent release continuously from a large vesicle pool but neurons can also release vesicles without stimulation. We characterized the Ca(2+) dependence, vesicle pools, and release sites involved in spontaneous release at photoreceptor ribbon synapses. In whole-cell recordings from light-adapted horizontal cells (HCs) of tiger salamander retina, we detected miniature excitatory post-synaptic currents (mEPSCs) when no stimulation was applied to promote exocytosis. Blocking Ca(2+) influx by lowering extracellular Ca(2+) , by application of Cd(2+) and other agents reduced the frequency of mEPSCs but did not eliminate them, indicating that mEPSCs can occur independently of Ca(2+) . We also measured release presynaptically from rods and cones by examining quantal glutamate transporter anion currents. Presynaptic quantal event frequency was reduced by Cd(2+) or by increased intracellular Ca(2+) buffering in rods, but not in cones, that were voltage clamped at -70 mV. By inhibiting the vesicle cycle with bafilomycin, we found the frequency of mEPSCs declined more rapidly than the amplitude of evoked excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) suggesting a possible separation between vesicle pools in evoked and spontaneous exocytosis. We mapped sites of Ca(2+) -independent release using total internal reflectance fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy to visualize fusion of individual vesicles loaded with dextran-conjugated pHrodo. Spontaneous release in rods occurred more frequently at non-ribbon sites than evoked release events. The function of Ca(2+) -independent spontaneous release at continuously active photoreceptor synapses remains unclear, but the low frequency of spontaneous quanta limits their impact on noise. PMID:27255664

  1. 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

  2. Multiple rod–cone and cone–rod photoreceptor transmutations in snakes: Evidence from visual opsin gene expression

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Simoe, Bruno F; Sampaio, Filipa L.; Loew, Ellis R.; Sanders, Kate L.; Fisher, Robert N.; Hart, Nathan S.; Hunt, David M.; Partridge, Julian C.; Gower, David J.

    2016-01-01

    In 1934, Gordon Walls forwarded his radical theory of retinal photoreceptor ‘transmutation’. This proposed that rods and cones used for scotopic and photopic vision, respectively, were not fixed but could evolve into each other via a series of morphologically distinguishable intermediates. Walls' prime evidence came from series of diurnal and nocturnal geckos and snakes that appeared to have pure-cone or pure-rod retinas (in forms that Walls believed evolved from ancestors with the reverse complement) or which possessed intermediate photoreceptor cells. Walls was limited in testing his theory because the precise identity of visual pigments present in photoreceptors was then unknown. Subsequent molecular research has hitherto neglected this topic but presents new opportunities. We identify three visual opsin genes, rh1, sws1 and lws, in retinal mRNA of an ecologically and taxonomically diverse sample of snakes central to Walls' theory. We conclude that photoreceptors with superficially rod- or cone-like morphology are not limited to containing scotopic or photopic opsins, respectively. Walls' theory is essentially correct, and more research is needed to identify the patterns, processes and functional implications of transmutation. Future research will help to clarify the fundamental properties and physiology of photoreceptors adapted to function in different light levels.

  3. 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

  4. Weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering supports sustained synaptic transmission by distinct mechanisms in rod and cone photoreceptors in salamander retina

    PubMed Central

    Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2015-01-01

    Differences in synaptic transmission between rod and cone photoreceptors contribute to different response kinetics in rod- versus cone-dominated visual pathways. We examined Ca2+ dynamics in synaptic terminals of tiger salamander photoreceptors under conditions that mimicked endogenous buffering to determine the influence on kinetically and mechanistically distinct components of synaptic transmission. Measurements of ICl(Ca) confirmed that endogenous Ca2+ buffering is equivalent to ˜0.05 mmol/L EGTA in rod and cone terminals. Confocal imaging showed that with such buffering, depolarization stimulated large, spatially unconstrained [Ca2+] increases that spread throughout photoreceptor terminals. We calculated immediately releasable pool (IRP) size and release efficiency in rods by deconvolving excitatory postsynaptic currents and presynaptic Ca2+ currents. Peak efficiency of ˜0.2 vesicles/channel was similar to that of cones (˜0.3 vesicles/channel). Efficiency in both cell types was not significantly affected by using weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering. However, weak Ca2+ buffering speeded Ca2+/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent replenishment of vesicles to ribbons in both rods and cones, thereby enhancing sustained release. In rods, weak Ca2+ buffering also amplified sustained release by enhancing CICR and CICR-stimulated release of vesicles at nonribbon sites. By contrast, elevating [Ca2+] at nonribbon sites in cones with weak Ca2+ buffering and by inhibiting Ca2+ extrusion did not trigger additional release, consistent with the notion that exocytosis from cones occurs exclusively at ribbons. The presence of weak endogenous Ca2+ buffering in rods and cones facilitates slow, sustained exocytosis by enhancing Ca2+/CaM-dependent replenishment of ribbons in both rods and cones and by stimulating nonribbon release triggered by CICR in rods. PMID:26416977

  5. Induction of the unfolded protein response by constitutive G-protein signaling in rod photoreceptor cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tian; Chen, Jeannie

    2014-10-17

    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.

  6. Cyclic Nucleotide-Gated Channels Require Ankyrin-G for Transport to the Sensory Cilium of Rod Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Kizhatil, Krishnakumar; Baker, Sheila A.; Arshavsky, Vadim Y.; Bennett, Vann

    2009-01-01

    Cyclic nucleotide-gated channels localize exclusively to the plasma membrane of photosensitive outer segments of rod photoreceptors where they generate the electrical response to light. Here we found that targeting of cyclic nucleotide-gated channels to the rod outer segment required their interaction with ankyrin-G. Ankyrin-G localized exclusively to rod outer segments, coimmunoprecipitated with the cyclic nucleotide-gated channel, and bound to the C-terminal domain of the β1-subunit. Ankyrin-G depletion in neonatal mouse retinas markedly reduced cyclic nucleotide-gated channel expression. Transgenic expression of cyclic nucleotide-gated channel β-subunit mutants in Xenopus rods showed that ankyrin-G binding was necessary and sufficient for targeting of the β1-subunit to outer segments. Thus ankyrin-G is required for transport of cyclic nucleotide-gated channels to the plasma membrane of rod outer segments. PMID:19299621

  7. 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

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

    PubMed

    Astakhova, Luba A; Samoiliuk, Evgeniia V; Govardovskii, Victor I; Firsov, Michael L

    2012-10-01

    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 Ca(2+) exchanger current rises 1.6-fold, which would correspond to a 1.6-fold elevation of [Ca(2+)](in). Analysis by a complete model of rod phototransduction suggests that an increase of [Ca(2+)](in) might also explain effects (b) and (c). The mechanism(s) by which cAMP could regulate [Ca(2+)](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

  9. Mechanism for selective synaptic wiring of rod photoreceptors into the retinal circuitry and its role in vision

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Yan; Sarria, Ignacio; Fehlhaber, Katherine E.; Kamasawa, Naomi; Orlandi, Cesare; James, Kiely N.; Hazen, Jennifer L.; Gardner, Matthew R.; Farzan, Michael; Lee, Amy; Baker, Sheila; Baldwin, Kristin; Sampath, Alapakkam P.; Martemyanov, Kirill A.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY In the retina, rod and cone photoreceptors form distinct connections with different classes of downstream bipolar cells. However, the molecular mechanisms responsible for their selective connectivity are unknown. Here we identify a cell-adhesion protein, ELFN1, to be essential for the formation of synapses between rods and rod ON-bipolar cells in the primary rod pathway. ELFN1 is expressed selectively in rods where it is targeted to the axonal terminals by the synaptic release machinery. At the synapse, ELFN1 binds in trans to mGluR6, the postsynaptic receptor on rod ON-bipolar cells. Elimination of ELFN1 in mice prevents the formation of synaptic contacts involving rods, but not cones, allowing a dissection of the contributions of primary and secondary rod pathways to retinal circuit function and vision. We conclude that ELFN1 is necessary for the selective wiring of rods into the primary rod pathway and is required for high sensitivity of vision. PMID:26402607

  10. Correlating Photoreceptor Mosaic Structure to Clinical Findings in Stargardt Disease

    PubMed Central

    Razeen, Moataz M.; Cooper, Robert F.; Langlo, Christopher S.; Goldberg, Mara R.; Wilk, Melissa A.; Han, Dennis P.; Connor, Thomas B.; Fishman, Gerald A.; Collison, Frederick T.; Sulai, Yusufu N.; Dubra, Alfredo; Carroll, Joseph; Stepien, Kimberly E.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To demonstrate a method for correlating photoreceptor mosaic structure with optical coherence tomography (OCT) and microperimetry findings in patients with Stargardt disease. Methods A total of 14 patients with clinically diagnosed Stargardt disease were imaged using confocal and split-detection adaptive optics scanning light ophthalmoscopy. Cone photoreceptors were identified manually in a band along the temporal meridian. Resulting values were compared to a normative database (n = 9) to generate cone density deviation (CDD) maps. Manual measurement of outer nuclear layer plus Henle fiber layer (ONL+HFL) thickness was performed, in addition to determination of the presence of ellipsoid zone (EZ) and interdigitation zone (IZ) bands on OCT. These results, along with microperimetry data, were overlaid with the CDD maps. Results Wide variation in foveal structure and CDD maps was seen within this small group. Disruption of ONL+HFL and/or IZ band was seen in all patients, with EZ band preservation in regions with low cone density in 38% of locations analyzed. Normality of retinal lamellar structure on OCT corresponded with cone density and visual function at 50/78 locations analyzed. Outer retinal tubulations containing photoreceptor-like structures were observed in 3 patients. Conclusions The use of CDD color-coded maps enables direct comparison of cone mosaic local density with other measures of retinal structure and function. Larger normative datasets and improved tools for automation of image alignment are needed. Translational Relevance The approach described facilitates comparison of complex multimodal data sets from patients with inherited retinal degeneration, and can be expanded to incorporate other structural imaging or functional testing. PMID:26981328

  11. A Pro23His Mutation Alters Prenatal Rod Photoreceptor Morphology in a Transgenic Swine Model of Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Patrick A.; Fernandez de Castro, Juan P.; Kaplan, Henry J.; McCall, Maureen A.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. Functional studies have detected deficits in retinal signaling in asymptomatic children from families with inherited autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Whether retinal abnormalities are present earlier during gestation or shortly after birth in a subset of children with autosomal dominant RP is unknown and no appropriate animal RP model possessing visual function at birth has been available to examine this possibility. In a recently developed transgenic P23H (TgP23H) rhodopsin swine model of RP, we tracked changes in pre- and early postnatal retinal morphology, as well as early postnatal retinal function. Methods. Domestic swine inseminated with semen from a TgP23H miniswine founder produced TgP23H hybrid and wild type (Wt) littermates. Outer retinal morphology was assessed at light and electron microscopic levels between embryonic (E) and postnatal (P) day E85 to P3. Retinal function was evaluated using the full field electroretinogram at P3. Results. Embryonic TgP23H rod photoreceptors are malformed and their rhodopsin expression pattern is abnormal. Consistent with morphological abnormalities, rod-driven function is absent at P3. In contrast, TgP23H and Wt cone photoreceptor morphology (E85–P3) and cone-driven retinal function (P3) are similar. Conclusions. Prenatal expression of mutant rhodopsin alters the normal morphological and functional development of rod photoreceptors in TgP23H swine embryos. Despite this significant change, cone photoreceptors are unaffected. Human infants with similarly aggressive RP might never have rod vision, although cone vision would be unaffected. Such aggressive forms of RP in preverbal children would require early intervention to delay or prevent functional blindness. PMID:24618321

  12. Interactions between the subunits of transducin and cyclic GMP phosphodiesterase in Rana catesbiana rod photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, A; Hayashi, F; Tatsumi, M; Bitensky, M W; George, J S

    1990-07-15

    In bullfrog (Rana catesbiana) rods the activity of cyclic GMP (cGMP) phosphodiesterase was stimulated 10 times by washing disc membranes with an isotonic, GTP-containing buffer. This stimulation was maintained following hydrolysis of GTP and after removal of guanine nucleotides. At least 60-70% of the inhibitory gamma subunit of cGMP phosphodiesterase (P gamma) was physically released from membranes by these washing procedures. When cGMP phosphodiesterase was activated by a hydrolysis-resistant GTP analogue, P gamma was found in the supernatant complexed with the transducin alpha subunit (T alpha) using three chromatography systems. When GTP was used to activate cGMP phosphodiesterase, P gamma was also found in the supernatant complexed with GDP.T alpha. This complex was also isolated using the same three chromatography systems, indicating that P gamma remained tightly bound to T alpha even after bound GTP was hydrolyzed. Interaction with the beta,gamma subunits of transducin, which remained associated with disc membranes, was required for the release of P gamma from the GDP.T alpha complex, which resulted in the deactivation of active cGMP phosphodiesterase. We conclude that during activation of cGMP phosphodiesterase, P gamma is complexed with T alpha (both GTP and GDP forms) in the supernatant and that, following GTP hydrolysis, beta,gamma subunits of transducin are necessary for the release of P gamma from the complex and the resulting inactivation of cGMP phosphodiesterase in frog photoreceptors. PMID:2164007

  13. Modelling the initial phase of the human rod photoreceptor response to the onset of steady illumination.

    PubMed

    Mahroo, Omar A R; Ban, Vin Shen; Bussmann, Benjamin M; Copley, Hannah C; Hammond, Christopher J; Lamb, Trevor D

    2012-04-01

    The initial time course of the change in photoreceptor outer segment membrane conductance in response to light flashes has been modelled using biochemical analysis of phototransduction, and the model has been successfully applied to a range of in vitro recordings and has also been shown to provide a good fit to the leading edge of the electroretinogram a-wave recorded in vivo. We investigated whether a simple modification of the model's equation would predict responses to the onset of steady illumination and tested this against electroretinogram recordings. Scotopic electroretinograms were recorded from three normal human subjects, using conductive fibre electrodes, in response to light flashes (0.30-740 scotopic cd m(-2) s) and to the onset of steady light (11-1,900 scotopic cd m(-2)). Subjects' pupils were dilated pharmacologically. The standard form of the model was applied to flash responses, as in previous studies, to obtain values for the three parameters: maximal response amplitude r (max), sensitivity S and effective delay time t (eff). A new "step response" equation was derived, and this equation provided a good fit to rod responses to steps of light using the same parameter values as for the flash responses. The results support the applicability of the model to the leading edge of electroretinogram responses: in each subject, the model could be used to fit responses both to flashes of light and to the onset of backgrounds with a single set of parameter values.

  14. Feedback induction of a photoreceptor-specific isoform of retinoid-related orphan nuclear receptor β by the rod transcription factor NRL.

    PubMed

    Fu, Yulong; Liu, Hong; Ng, Lily; Kim, Jung-Woong; Hao, Hong; Swaroop, Anand; Forrest, Douglas

    2014-11-21

    Vision requires the generation of cone and rod photoreceptors that function in daylight and dim light, respectively. The neural retina leucine zipper factor (NRL) transcription factor critically controls photoreceptor fates as it stimulates rod differentiation and suppresses cone differentiation. However, the controls over NRL induction that balance rod and cone fates remain unclear. We have reported previously that the retinoid-related orphan receptor β gene (Rorb) is required for Nrl expression and other retinal functions. We show that Rorb differentially expresses two isoforms: RORβ2 in photoreceptors and RORβ1 in photoreceptors, progenitor cells, and other cell types. Deletion of RORβ2 or RORβ1 increased the cone:rod ratio ∼2-fold, whereas deletion of both isoforms in Rorb(-/-) mice produced almost exclusively cone-like cells at the expense of rods, suggesting that both isoforms induce Nrl. Electroporation of either RORβ isoform into retinal explants from Rorb(-/-) neonates reactivated Nrl and rod genes but, in Nrl(-/-) explants, failed to reactivate rod genes, indicating that NRL is the effector for both RORβ isoforms in rod differentiation. Unexpectedly, RORβ2 expression was lost in Nrl(-/-) mice. Moreover, NRL activated the RORβ2-specific promoter of Rorb, indicating that NRL activates Rorb, its own inducer gene. We suggest that feedback activation between Nrl and Rorb genes reinforces the commitment to rod differentiation. PMID:25296752

  15. Deletion of the presynaptic scaffold CAST reduces active zone size in rod photoreceptors and impairs visual processing.

    PubMed

    tom Dieck, Susanne; Specht, Dana; Strenzke, Nicola; Hida, Yamato; Krishnamoorthy, Vidhyasankar; Schmidt, Karl-Friedrich; Inoue, Eiji; Ishizaki, Hiroyoshi; Tanaka-Okamoto, Miki; Miyoshi, Jun; Hagiwara, Akari; Brandstätter, Johann H; Löwel, Siegrid; Gollisch, Tim; Ohtsuka, Toshihisa; Moser, Tobias

    2012-08-29

    How size and shape of presynaptic active zones are regulated at the molecular level has remained elusive. Here we provide insight from studying rod photoreceptor ribbon-type active zones after disruption of CAST/ERC2, one of the cytomatrix of the active zone (CAZ) proteins. Rod photoreceptors were present in normal numbers, and the a-wave of the electroretinogram (ERG)--reflecting their physiological population response--was unchanged in CAST knock-out (CAST(-/-)) mice. Using immunofluorescence and electron microscopy, we found that the size of the rod presynaptic active zones, their Ca(2+) channel complement, and the extension of the outer plexiform layer were diminished. Moreover, we observed sprouting of horizontal and bipolar cells toward the outer nuclear layer indicating impaired rod transmitter release. However, rod synapses of CAST(-/-) mice, unlike in mouse mutants for the CAZ protein Bassoon, displayed anchored ribbons, normal vesicle densities, clustered Ca(2+) channels, and essentially normal molecular organization. The reduction of the rod active zone size went along with diminished amplitudes of the b-wave in scotopic ERGs. Assuming, based on the otherwise intact synaptic structure, an unaltered function of the remaining release apparatus, we take our finding to suggest a scaling of release rate with the size of the active zone. Multielectrode-array recordings of retinal ganglion cells showed decreased contrast sensitivity. This was also observed by optometry, which, moreover, revealed reduced visual acuity. We conclude that CAST supports large active zone size and high rates of transmission at rod ribbon synapses, which are required for normal vision.

  16. A Highly Ca2+-Sensitive Pool of Vesicles Contributes to Linearity at the Rod Photoreceptor Ribbon Synapse

    PubMed Central

    Thoreson, Wallace B.; Rabl, Katalin; Townes-Anderson, Ellen; Heidelberger, Ruth

    2011-01-01

    Summary Studies of the properties of synaptic transmission have been carried out at only a few synapses. We analyzed exocytosis from rod photoreceptors with a combination of physiological and ultrastructural techniques. As at other ribbon synapses, we found that rods exhibited rapid kinetics of release, and the number of vesicles in the releasable pool is comparable to the number of vesicles tethered at ribbon-style active zones. However, unlike other previously studied neurons, we identified a highly Ca2+-sensitive pool of releasable vesicles with a relatively shallow relationship between the rate of exocytosis and [Ca2+]i that is nearly linear over a presumed physiological range of intra-terminal [Ca2+]. The low-order [Ca2+] dependence of release promotes a linear relationship between Ca2+ entry and exocytosis that permits rods to relay information about small changes in illumination with high fidelity at the first synapse in vision. PMID:15157421

  17. Microtubule-associated protein tau in bovine retinal photoreceptor rod outer segments: comparison with brain tau

    PubMed Central

    Yamazaki, Akio; Nishizawa, Yuji; Matsuura, Isao; Hayashi, Fumio; Usukura, Jiro; Bondarenko, Vladimir A.

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested a possible involvement of abnormal tau in some retinal degenerative diseases. The common view in these studies is that these retinal diseases share the mechanism of tau-mediated degenerative diseases in brain and that information about these brain diseases may be directly applied to explain these retinal diseases. Here we collectively examine this view by revealing three basic characteristics of tau in the rod outer segment (ROS) of bovine retinal photoreceptors, i.e., its isoforms, its phosphorylation mode and its interaction with microtubules, and by comparing them with those of brain tau. We find that ROS contains at least four isoforms: three are identical to those in brain and one is unique in ROS. All ROS isoforms, like brain isoforms, are modified with multiple phosphate molecules; however, ROS isoforms show their own specific phosphorylation pattern, and these phosphorylation patterns appear not to be identical to those of brain tau. Interestingly, some ROS isoforms, under the normal conditions, are phosphorylated at the sites identical to those in Alzheimer’s patient isoforms. Surprisingly, a large portion of ROS isoforms tightly associates with a membranous component(s) other than microtubules, and this association is independent of their phosphorylation states. These observations strongly suggest that tau plays various roles in ROS and that some of these functions may not be comparable to those of brain tau. We believe that knowledge about tau in the entire retinal network and/or its individual cells are also essential for elucidation of tau-mediated retinal diseases, if any. PMID:23712071

  18. In Vivo Analysis of Disease-Associated Point Mutations Unveils Profound Differences in mRNA Splicing of Peripherin-2 in Rod and Cone Photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Becirovic, Elvir; Böhm, Sybille; Nguyen, Ong Nam Phuong; Riedmayr, Lisa Maria; Koch, Mirja Annika; Schulze, Elisabeth; Kohl, Susanne; Borsch, Oliver; Santos-Ferreira, Tiago; Ader, Marius; Michalakis, Stylianos; Biel, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Point mutations in peripherin-2 (PRPH2) are associated with severe retinal degenerative disorders affecting rod and/or cone photoreceptors. Various disease-causing mutations have been identified, but the exact contribution of a given mutation to the clinical phenotype remains unclear. Exonic point mutations are usually assumed to alter single amino acids, thereby influencing specific protein characteristics; however, they can also affect mRNA splicing. To examine the effects of distinct PRPH2 point mutations on mRNA splicing and protein expression in vivo, we designed PRPH2 minigenes containing the three coding exons and relevant intronic regions of human PRPH2. Minigenes carrying wild type PRPH2 or PRPH2 exon 2 mutations associated with rod or cone disorders were expressed in murine photoreceptors using recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors. We detect three PRPH2 splice isoforms in rods and cones: correctly spliced, intron 1 retention, and unspliced. In addition, we show that only the correctly spliced isoform results in detectable protein expression. Surprisingly, compared to rods, differential splicing leads to lower expression of correctly spliced and higher expression of unspliced PRPH2 in cones. These results were confirmed in qRT-PCR experiments from FAC-sorted murine rods and cones. Strikingly, three out of five cone disease-causing PRPH2 mutations profoundly enhanced correct splicing of PRPH2, which correlated with strong upregulation of mutant PRPH2 protein expression in cones. By contrast, four out of six PRPH2 mutants associated with rod disorders gave rise to a reduced PRPH2 protein expression via different mechanisms. These mechanisms include aberrant mRNA splicing, protein mislocalization, and protein degradation. Our data suggest that upregulation of PRPH2 levels in combination with defects in the PRPH2 function caused by the mutation might be an important mechanism leading to cone degeneration. By contrast, the pathology of rod

  19. Phosphatidylinositol-stimulated phosphorylation of an inhibitory subunit of cGMP phosphodiesterase in vertebrate rod photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi, F; Lin, G Y; Matsumoto, H; Yamazaki, A

    1991-01-01

    An inhibitory subunit (P gamma) of cGMP phosphodiesterase from vertebrate rod photoreceptors (frog, toad, and bovine) was phosphorylated by cytosolic protein kinase(s) derived from intact frog rod outer segments. The phosphorylation of frog P gamma was stimulated by phosphatidylinositol but not by cAMP or cGMP. One- and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis revealed that 70-80% of P gamma was phosphorylated with 1 mol of phosphate per frog P gamma under optimal conditions. A peptide that derived from an active domain of bovine P gamma was also phosphorylated. Phosphorylation of frog P gamma was inhibited by addition of the peptide to the reaction mixture. Phosphorylation of frog P gamma was also inhibited by addition of transducin subunits or active (P gamma-less) cGMP phosphodiesterase. Okadaic acid, on the other hand, enhanced P gamma phosphorylation, suggesting the presence of protein phosphatase(s) in the cytosolic fraction. These data suggest another mechanism for the regulation of cGMP phosphodiesterase in vertebrate rod photoreceptors. Images PMID:1852003

  20. Multiple domains in the Crumbs Homolog 2a (Crb2a) protein are required for regulating rod photoreceptor size

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Vertebrate retinal photoreceptors are morphologically complex cells that have two apical regions, the inner segment and the outer segment. The outer segment is a modified cilium and is continuously regenerated throughout life. The molecular and cellular mechanisms that underlie vertebrate photoreceptor morphogenesis and the maintenance of the outer segment are largely unknown. The Crumbs (Crb) complex is a key regulator of apical membrane identity and size in epithelia and in Drosophila photoreceptors. Mutations in the human gene CRUMBS HOMOLOG 1 (CRB1) are associated with early and severe vision loss. Drosophila Crumbs and vertebrate Crb1 and Crumbs homolog 2 (Crb2) proteins are structurally similar, all are single pass transmembrane proteins with a large extracellular domain containing multiple laminin- and EGF-like repeats and a small intracellular domain containing a FERM-binding domain and a PDZ-binding domain. In order to begin to understand the role of the Crb family of proteins in vertebrate photoreceptors we generated stable transgenic zebrafish in which rod photoreceptors overexpress full-length Crb2a protein and several other Crb2a constructs engineered to lack specific domains. Results We examined the localization of Crb2a constructs and their effects on rod morphology. We found that only the full-length Crb2a protein approximated the normal localization of Crb2a protein apical to adherens junctions in the photoreceptor inner segment. Several Crb2a construct proteins localized abnormally to the outer segment and one construct localized abnormally to the cell body. Overexpression of full-length Crb2a greatly increased inner segment size while expression of several other constructs increased outer segment size. Conclusions Our observations suggest that particular domains in Crb2a regulate its localization and thus may regulate its regionalized function. Our results also suggest that the PDZ-binding domain in Crb2a might bring a protein(s) into

  1. FIZ1 is Expressed During Photoreceptor Maturation, and Synergizes with NRL and CRX at Rod-Specific Promoters in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Mali, Raghuveer S.; Zhang, Xiao; Hoerauf, Widmann; Doyle, Danielle; Devitt, Jeffrey; Loffreda-Wren, Janice; Mitton, Kenneth P.

    2015-01-01

    FIZ1 (Flt-3 Interacting Zinc-finger) interacts and co-purifies with the rod-specific transcription factor NRL (Neural Retina Leucine zipper). We hypothesize that FIZ1 is part of an interface between cell-specific factors, like NRL, and more ubiquitous regulatory networks that vary the absolute expression levels of some rod-specific genes (i.e. Rhodopsin). As part of an ongoing exploration of FIZ1’s role in neural retina, in vivo, we have taken the first look at FIZ1 expression in the developing mouse retina during the retinal maturation period. Using the normal C57/B6 mouse as a model, multiple approaches were used including: immunoblotting, immunohistochemistry, and quantitative real-time PCR. Functional implications of FIZ1/NRL interaction, on NRL-and CRX-mediated activation of the Rhodopsin (Rho) and cGMP-phosphodiesterase β-subunit gene (PDE6B) promoters, were examined by co-transfection assays. Immunoblot analysis revealed that FIZ1 protein levels were lowest in immature mouse neural retina (P0). FIZ1 concentration increased at least ten-fold as the neural retina matured to the adult state (P21 and later). Immunohistochemical comparison of immature post-natal and mature adult retina revealed increasing FIZ1 protein in photoreceptors, the inner plexiform layer, and the ganglion cell layer. Total retinal Fiz1 mRNA content increased as the neural retina matured. The expected increase in Rho mRNA level was also monitored as a genetic marker of photoreceptor maturation. In transient co-transfection assays of CV1 cells, FIZ1 synergized with NRL to activate transcription from the Rho and PDE6B gene promoters with some differences. In the case of the Rho promoter, FIZ1 synergized when both NRL and CRX were present. With the PDE6B promoter, FIZ1 synergized with NRL alone, and the inclusion of CRX decreased this synergy. Conclusions These findings support previous evidence that FIZ1 is present in rod-photoreceptors. (Co-immunoprecipitation from nuclear

  2. Overexpression of Guanylate Cyclase Activating Protein 2 in Rod Photoreceptors In Vivo Leads to Morphological Changes at the Synaptic Ribbon

    PubMed Central

    López-Begines, Santiago; Fernández-Sánchez, Laura; Cuenca, Nicolás; Llorens, Jordi; de la Villa, Pedro; Méndez, Ana

    2012-01-01

    Guanylate cyclase activating proteins are EF-hand containing proteins that confer calcium sensitivity to retinal guanylate cyclase at the outer segment discs of photoreceptor cells. By making the rate of cGMP synthesis dependent on the free intracellular calcium levels set by illumination, GCAPs play a fundamental role in the recovery of the light response and light adaptation. The main isoforms GCAP1 and GCAP2 also localize to the synaptic terminal, where their function is not known. Based on the reported interaction of GCAP2 with Ribeye, the major component of synaptic ribbons, it was proposed that GCAP2 could mediate the synaptic ribbon dynamic changes that happen in response to light. We here present a thorough ultrastructural analysis of rod synaptic terminals in loss-of-function (GCAP1/GCAP2 double knockout) and gain-of-function (transgenic overexpression) mouse models of GCAP2. Rod synaptic ribbons in GCAPs−/− mice did not differ from wildtype ribbons when mice were raised in constant darkness, indicating that GCAPs are not required for ribbon early assembly or maturation. Transgenic overexpression of GCAP2 in rods led to a shortening of synaptic ribbons, and to a higher than normal percentage of club-shaped and spherical ribbon morphologies. Restoration of GCAP2 expression in the GCAPs−/− background (GCAP2 expression in the absence of endogenous GCAP1) had the striking result of shortening ribbon length to a much higher degree than overexpression of GCAP2 in the wildtype background, as well as reducing the thickness of the outer plexiform layer without affecting the number of rod photoreceptor cells. These results indicate that preservation of the GCAP1 to GCAP2 relative levels is relevant for maintaining the integrity of the synaptic terminal. Our demonstration of GCAP2 immunolocalization at synaptic ribbons at the ultrastructural level would support a role of GCAPs at mediating the effect of light on morphological remodeling changes of synaptic

  3. Structural and functional remodeling in the retina of a mouse with a photoreceptor synaptopathy: plasticity in the rod and degeneration in the cone system.

    PubMed

    Specht, Dana; Tom Dieck, Susanne; Ammermüller, Josef; Regus-Leidig, Hanna; Gundelfinger, Eckart Dieter; Brandstätter, Johann Helmut

    2007-11-01

    Knowledge about the plastic and regenerative capacity of the retina is of key importance for therapeutic approaches to restore vision in patients who suffer from degenerative retinal diseases. In the retinae of mice, mutant for the presynaptic scaffolding protein Bassoon, signal transfer at photoreceptor ribbon synapses is disturbed due to impaired ribbon attachment to the active zone. In a long-term study we observed, with light and electron microscopic immunocytochemistry and electroretinographic recordings, two overlapping events in the Bassoon mutant retina, i.e. loss of photoreceptor synapses in the outer plexiform layer, and structural remodeling and formation of ectopic photoreceptor synapses in the outer nuclear layer, a region usually devoid of synapses. Formation of ectopic synaptic sites starts around the time when photoreceptor synaptogenesis is completed in wild-type mice and progresses throughout life. The result is a dense plexus of ectopic photoreceptor synapses with significantly altered but considerable synaptic transmission. Ectopic synapse formation is led by the sprouting of horizontal cells followed by the extension of rod bipolar cell neurites that fasciculate with and grow along the horizontal cell processes. Although only the rod photoreceptors and their postsynaptic partners show structural and functional remodeling, our study demonstrates the potential of the retina for long-lasting plastic changes.

  4. The disruption of the rod-derived cone viability gene leads to photoreceptor dysfunction and susceptibility to oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Cronin, T; Raffelsberger, W; Lee-Rivera, I; Jaillard, C; Niepon, M-L; Kinzel, B; Clérin, E; Petrosian, A; Picaud, S; Poch, O; Sahel, J-A; Léveillard, T

    2010-07-01

    Rod-derived cone viability factor (RdCVF) is a thioredoxin-like protein, which has therapeutic potential for rod-cone dystrophies such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Cone loss in rodent models of RP is effectively reduced by RdCVF treatment. In this study, we investigate the physiological role of RdCVF in the retina by analyzing the phenotype of the mouse lacking the RdCVF gene, Nxnl1. Although the mice do not show an obvious developmental defect, an age-related reduction of both cone and rod function and a delay in the dark-adaptation of the retina are recorded by electroretinogram (ERG). This functional change is accompanied by a 17% reduction in cone density and a 20% reduction in thickness of the outer nuclear layer. The transcriptome of the retina reveals early changes in the expression of genes involved in programmed cell death, stress-response and redox-signaling, which is followed by a generalized injury response with increased microglial activation, GFAP, FGF2 and lipid peroxidation levels. Furthermore, cones of the mice lacking Nxnl1 are more sensitive to oxidative stress with a reduction of 65% in the cone flicker ERG amplitude measured under hyperoxic conditions. We show here that the RdCVF gene, in addition to therapeutic properties, has an essential role in photoreceptor maintenance and resistance to retinal oxidative stress. PMID:20139892

  5. Rapid kinetics of endocytosis at rod photoreceptor synapses depends upon endocytic load and calcium.

    PubMed

    Cork, Karlene M; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2014-05-01

    Release from rods is triggered by the opening of L-type Ca2+ channels that lie beneath synaptic ribbons. After exocytosis, vesicles are retrieved by compensatory endocytosis. Previous work showed that endocytosis is dynamin-dependent in rods but dynamin-independent in cones. We hypothesized that fast endocytosis in rods may also differ from cones in its dependence upon the amount of Ca2+ influx and/or endocytic load. We measured exocytosis and endocytosis from membrane capacitance (C m) changes evoked by depolarizing steps in voltage clamped rods from tiger salamander retinal slices. Similar to cones, the time constant for endocytosis in rods was quite fast, averaging <200 ms. We manipulated Ca2+ influx and the amount of vesicle release by altering the duration and voltage of depolarizing steps. Unlike cones, endocytosis kinetics in rods slowed after increasing Ca2+ channel activation with longer step durations or more strongly depolarized voltage steps. Endocytosis kinetics also slowed as Ca2+ buffering was decreased by replacing BAPTA (10 or 1 mM) with the slower Ca2+ buffer EGTA (5 or 0.5 mM) in the pipette solution. These data provide further evidence that endocytosis mechanisms differ in rods and cones and suggest that endocytosis in rods is regulated by both endocytic load and local Ca2+ levels.

  6. Properties of Ribbon and Non-Ribbon Release from Rod Photoreceptors Revealed by Visualizing Individual Synaptic Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Minghui; Van Hook, Matthew J.; Zenisek, David

    2013-01-01

    Vesicle release from rod photoreceptors is regulated by Ca2+ entry through L-type channels located near synaptic ribbons. We characterized sites and kinetics of vesicle release in salamander rods by using total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy to visualize fusion of individual synaptic vesicles. A small number of vesicles were loaded by brief incubation with FM1–43 or a dextran-conjugated, pH-sensitive form of rhodamine, pHrodo. Labeled organelles matched the diffraction-limited size of fluorescent microspheres and disappeared rapidly during stimulation. Consistent with fusion, depolarization-evoked vesicle disappearance paralleled electrophysiological release kinetics and was blocked by inhibiting Ca2+ influx. Rods maintained tonic release at resting membrane potentials near those in darkness, causing depletion of membrane-associated vesicles unless Ca2+ entry was inhibited. This depletion of release sites implies that sustained release may be rate limited by vesicle delivery. During depolarizing stimulation, newly appearing vesicles approached the membrane at ∼800 nm/s, where they paused for ∼60 ms before fusion. With fusion, vesicles advanced ∼18 nm closer to the membrane. Release events were concentrated near ribbons, but lengthy depolarization also triggered release from more distant non-ribbon sites. Consistent with greater contributions from non-ribbon sites during lengthier depolarization, damaging the ribbon by fluorophore-assisted laser inactivation (FALI) of Ribeye caused only weak inhibition of exocytotic capacitance increases evoked by 200-ms depolarizing test steps, whereas FALI more strongly inhibited capacitance increases evoked by 25 ms steps. Amplifying release by use of non-ribbon sites when rods are depolarized in darkness may improve detection of decrements in release when they hyperpolarize to light. PMID:23365244

  7. Intracellular calcium stores drive slow non-ribbon vesicle release from rod photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Minghui; Križaj, David; Thoreson, Wallace B.

    2014-01-01

    Rods are capable of greater slow release than cones contributing to overall slower release kinetics. Slow release in rods involves Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release (CICR). By impairing release from ribbons, we found that unlike cones where release occurs entirely at ribbon-style active zones, slow release from rods occurs mostly at ectopic, non-ribbon sites. To investigate the role of CICR in ribbon and non-ribbon release from rods, we used total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy as a tool for visualizing terminals of isolated rods loaded with fluorescent Ca2+ indicator dyes and synaptic vesicles loaded with dextran-conjugated pH-sensitive rhodamine. We found that rather than simply facilitating release, activation of CICR by ryanodine triggered release directly in rods, independent of plasma membrane Ca2+ channel activation. Ryanodine-evoked release occurred mostly at non-ribbon sites and release evoked by sustained depolarization at non-ribbon sites was mostly due to CICR. Unlike release at ribbon-style active zones, non-ribbon release did not occur at fixed locations. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching of endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-tracker dye in rod terminals showed that ER extends continuously from synapse to soma. Release of Ca2+ from terminal ER by lengthy depolarization did not significantly deplete Ca2+ from ER in the perikaryon. Collectively, these results indicate that CICR-triggered release at non-ribbon sites is a major mechanism for maintaining vesicle release from rods and that CICR in terminals may be sustained by diffusion of Ca2+ through ER from other parts of the cell. PMID:24550779

  8. Calcium-induced calcium release contributes to synaptic release from mouse rod photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Babai, N.; Morgans, C. W.; Thoreson, WB.

    2009-01-01

    We tested whether calcium-induced calcium release (CICR) contributes to synaptic release from rods in mammalian retina. Electron micrographs and immunofluorescent double labeling for the sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase (SERCA2) and synaptic ribbon protein, ribeye, showed a close association between ER and synaptic ribbons in mouse rod terminals. Stimulating CICR with 10 μM ryanodine evoked Ca2+ increases in rod terminals from mouse retinal slices visualized using confocal microscopy with the Ca2+-sensitive dye, Fluo-4. Ryanodine also stimulated membrane depolarization of individual mouse rods. Inhibiting CICR with a high concentration of ryanodine (100 μM) reduced the ERG b-wave but not a-wave consistent with inhibition of synaptic transmission from rods. Ryanodine (100 μM) also inhibited light-evoked voltage responses of individual rod bipolar cells (RBCs) and presumptive horizontal cells recorded with perforated patch recording techniques. A presynaptic site of action for ryanodine's effects is further indicated by the finding that ryanodine (100 μM) did not alter currents evoked in voltage-clamped RBCs by puffing the mGluR6 antagonist, (RS)-α-cyclopropyl-4-phosphonophenylglycine (CPPG), onto bipolar cell dendrites in the presence of the mGluR6 agonist L-(+)-2-amino-4-phosphonobutyric acid (L-AP4). Ryanodine (100 μM) also inhibited glutamatergic outward currents in RBCs evoked by electrical stimulation of rods using electrodes placed in the outer segment layer. Together, these results indicate that, like amphibian retina, CICR contributes to synaptic release from mammalian (mouse) rods. By boosting synaptic release in darkness, CICR may improve the detection of small luminance changes by post-synaptic neurons. PMID:19932743

  9. Transcriptome Dynamics of Developing Photoreceptors in Three-Dimensional Retina Cultures Recapitulates Temporal Sequence of Human Cone and Rod Differentiation Revealing Cell Surface Markers and Gene Networks.

    PubMed

    Kaewkhaw, Rossukon; Kaya, Koray Dogan; Brooks, Matthew; Homma, Kohei; Zou, Jizhong; Chaitankar, Vijender; Rao, Mahendra; Swaroop, Anand

    2015-12-01

    The derivation of three-dimensional (3D) stratified neural retina from pluripotent stem cells has permitted investigations of human photoreceptors. We have generated a H9 human embryonic stem cell subclone that carries a green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter under the control of the promoter of cone-rod homeobox (CRX), an established marker of postmitotic photoreceptor precursors. The CRXp-GFP reporter replicates endogenous CRX expression in vitro when the H9 subclone is induced to form self-organizing 3D retina-like tissue. At day 37, CRX+ photoreceptors appear in the basal or middle part of neural retina and migrate to apical side by day 67. Temporal and spatial patterns of retinal cell type markers recapitulate the predicted sequence of development. Cone gene expression is concomitant with CRX, whereas rod differentiation factor neural retina leucine zipper protein (NRL) is first observed at day 67. At day 90, robust expression of NRL and its target nuclear receptor NR2E3 is evident in many CRX+ cells, while minimal S-opsin and no rhodopsin or L/M-opsin is present. The transcriptome profile, by RNA-seq, of developing human photoreceptors is remarkably concordant with mRNA and immunohistochemistry data available for human fetal retina although many targets of CRX, including phototransduction genes, exhibit a significant delay in expression. We report on temporal changes in gene signatures, including expression of cell surface markers and transcription factors; these expression changes should assist in isolation of photoreceptors at distinct stages of differentiation and in delineating coexpression networks. Our studies establish the first global expression database of developing human photoreceptors, providing a reference map for functional studies in retinal cultures. PMID:26235913

  10. Loss of retinoschisin (RS1) cell surface protein in maturing mouse rod photoreceptors elevates the luminance threshold for light-driven translocation of transducin but not arrestin.

    PubMed

    Ziccardi, Lucia; Vijayasarathy, Camasamudram; Bush, Ronald A; Sieving, Paul A

    2012-09-19

    Loss of retinoschisin (RS1) in Rs1 knock-out (Rs1-KO) retina produces a post-photoreceptor phenotype similar to X-linked retinoschisis in young males. However, Rs1 is expressed strongly in photoreceptors, and Rs1-KO mice have early reduction in the electroretinogram a-wave. We examined light-activated transducin and arrestin translocation in young Rs1-KO mice as a marker for functional abnormalities in maturing rod photoreceptors. We found a progressive reduction in luminance threshold for transducin translocation in wild-type (WT) retinas between postnatal days P18 and P60. At P21, the threshold in Rs1-KO retinas was 10-fold higher than WT, but it decreased to <2.5-fold higher by P60. Light-activated arrestin translocation and re-translocation of transducin in the dark were not affected. Rs1-KO rod outer segment (ROS) length was significantly shorter than WT at P21 but was comparable with WT at P60. These findings suggested a delay in the structural and functional maturation of Rs1-KO ROS. Consistent with this, transcription factors CRX and NRL, which are fundamental to maturation of rod protein expression, were reduced in ROS of Rs1-KO mice at P21 but not at P60. Expression of transducin was 15-30% lower in P21 Rs1-KO ROS and transducin GTPase hydrolysis was nearly twofold faster, reflecting a 1.7- to 2.5-fold increase in RGS9 (regulator of G-protein signaling) level. Transduction protein expression and activity levels were similar to WT at P60. Transducin translocation threshold elevation indicates photoreceptor functional abnormalities in young Rs1-KO mice. Rapid reduction in threshold coupled with age-related changes in transduction protein levels and transcription factor expression are consistent with delayed maturation of Rs1-KO photoreceptors.

  11. Gene structure and chromosome localization to 7q21.3 of the human rod photoreceptor transducin {gamma}-subunit gene (GNGT1)

    SciTech Connect

    Scherer, S.W.; Tsui, Lap-Chee |; Feinstein, D.S.

    1996-07-01

    The transducin {gamma}-subunit gene (GNGT1) encodes a member ({gamma}{sub 1}) of the family of heterotrimeric G-protein {gamma}-subunits that is specific to rod photoreceptors. In this report we have determined the complete structure of the GNGT1 gene and have localized it to human chromosome 7q21.3 using somatic cell hybrid and yeast artificial chromosome analysis. 16 refs., 2 figs.

  12. Knockout of RP2 decreases GRK1 and rod transducin subunits and leads to photoreceptor degeneration in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Liu, Fei; Chen, Jiaxiang; Yu, Shanshan; Raghupathy, Rakesh Kotapati; Liu, Xiliang; Qin, Yayun; Li, Chang; Huang, Mi; Liao, Shengjie; Wang, Jiuxiang; Zou, Jian; Shu, Xinhua; Tang, Zhaohui; Liu, Mugen

    2015-08-15

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) affects about 1.8 million individuals worldwide. X-linked retinitis pigmentosa (XLRP) is one of the most severe forms of RP. Nearly 85% of XLRP cases are caused by mutations in the X-linked retinitis pigmentosa 2 (RP2) and RPGR. RP2 has been considered to be a GTPase activator protein for ARL3 and to play a role in the traffic of ciliary proteins. The mechanism of how RP2 mutations cause RP is still unclear. In this study, we generated an RP2 knockout zebrafish line using transcription activator-like effector nuclease technology. Progressive retinal degeneration could be observed in the mutant zebrafish. The degeneration of rods' outer segments (OSs) is predominant, followed by the degeneration of cones' OS. These phenotypes are similar to the characteristics of RP2 patients, and also partly consistent with the phenotypes of RP2 knockout mice and morpholino-mediated RP2 knockdown zebrafish. For the first time, we found RP2 deletion leads to decreased protein levels and abnormal retinal localizations of GRK1 and rod transducin subunits (GNAT1 and GNB1) in zebrafish. Furthermore, the distribution of the total farnesylated proteins in zebrafish retina is also affected by RP2 ablation. These molecular alterations observed in the RP2 knockout zebrafish might probably be responsible for the gradual loss of the photoreceptors' OSs. Our work identified the progression of retinal degeneration in RP2 knockout zebrafish, provided a foundation for revealing the pathogenesis of RP caused by RP2 mutations, and would help to develop potential therapeutics against RP in further studies. PMID:26034134

  13. Characterization of Conformational Changes and Protein-Protein Interactions of Rod Photoreceptor Phosphodiesterase (PDE6)*

    PubMed Central

    Matte, Suzanne L.; Laue, Thomas M.; Cote, Rick H.

    2012-01-01

    As the central effector of visual transduction, the regulation of photoreceptor phosphodiesterase (PDE6) is controlled by both allosteric mechanisms and extrinsic binding partners. However, the conformational changes and interactions of PDE6 with known interacting proteins are poorly understood. Using a fluorescence detection system for the analytical ultracentrifuge, we examined allosteric changes in PDE6 structure and protein-protein interactions with its inhibitory γ-subunit, the prenyl-binding protein (PrBP/δ), and activated transducin. In solution, the PDE6 catalytic dimer (Pαβ) exhibits a more asymmetric shape (axial ratio of 6.6) than reported previously. The inhibitory Pγ subunit behaves as an intrinsically disordered protein in solution but binds with high affinity to the catalytic dimer to reconstitute the holoenzyme without a detectable change in shape. Whereas the closely related PDE5 homodimer undergoes a significant change in its sedimentation properties upon cGMP binding to its regulatory cGMP binding site, no such change was detected upon ligand binding to the PDE6 catalytic dimer. However, when Pαβ was reconstituted with Pγ truncation mutants lacking the C-terminal inhibitory region, cGMP-dependent allosteric changes were observed. PrBP/δ bound to the PDE6 holoenzyme with high affinity (KD = 6.2 nm) and induced elongation of the protein complex. Binding of activated transducin to PDE6 holoenzyme resulted in a concentration-dependent increase in the sedimentation coefficient, reflecting a dynamic equilibrium between transducin and PDE6. We conclude that allosteric regulation of PDE6 is more complex than for PDE5 and is dependent on interactions of regions of Pγ with the catalytic dimer. PMID:22514270

  14. Photoreceptor proteins and melatonin rhythm generating AANAT in the carp pineal: Temporal organization and correlation with natural photo-thermal cues.

    PubMed

    Seth, Mohua; Maitra, Saumen Kumar

    2010-04-01

    We studied temporal organization of both the photoreceptor (rod-like opsin, alpha subunit of the G protein transducin or alpha-TD) and melatonin generating (AANAT) proteins in the same pineal of a tropical surface dwelling free-living carp Catla catla, and analyzed possible correlation between them as well as with natural photo-thermal variables in an annual cycle. The pineal from individual fish was collected at four different time points (06.00 h, 12.00 h, 18.00 h, and 24.00 h) in a 24.00 h cycle and the same was repeated in four distinct seasons in an annual reproductive cycle to study each protein following Western blot and densitometric analyses of respective immunoblots. The rod-like opsin was represented by four distinct bands, a closely spaced doublet of 39 kDa and bands of 78 and 115 kDa. Two separate bands, one at 43 kDa and another at 65 kDa, were detected for alpha-TD, and a single band at 23 kDa for AANAT. Both the pineal photoreceptor proteins exhibited an identical pattern of diurnal variations with a peak at midday (12.00 h) and fall at midnight (24.00 h), while maximum band intensity of AANAT was noted in midnight (24.00 h) and minimum at midday (12.00 h) depicting a significant negative correlation (p<0.001) between them. Likewise, in an annual cycle, a significant (p<0.01) negative correlation was found between the expression of each pineal photoreceptor protein (being highest during the spawning phase) and AANAT (maximum during the post-spawning phase). Seasonal fluctuations of both the photoperiod and water temperature exhibited a significant (p<0.01) positive correlation with the expression of pineal photoreceptor proteins and a significant (p<0.05) negative correlation with the pineal AANAT. Collectively, the present phenological study is the first report on temporal organization of pineal photoreceptor proteins and their correlation with the melatonin rhythm-generating enzyme AANAT as well as environmental photo-thermal cues depicting their

  15. In-vivo imaging of the photoreceptor mosaic in retinal dystrophies and correlations with visual function

    SciTech Connect

    Choi, S; Doble, N; Hardy, J; Jones, S; Keltner, J; Olivier, S; Werner, J S

    2005-10-26

    To relate in-vivo microscopic retinal changes to visual function assessed with clinical tests in patients with various forms of retinal dystrophies. The UC Davis Adaptive Optics (AO) Fundus Camera was used to acquire in-vivo retinal images at the cellular level. Visual function tests, consisting of visual field analysis, multifocal electroretinography (mfERG), contrast sensitivity and color vision measures, were performed on all subjects. Five patients with different forms of retinal dystrophies and three control subjects were recruited. Cone densities were quantified for all retinal images. In all images of diseased retinas, there were extensive areas of dark space between groups of photoreceptors, where no cone photoreceptors were evident. These irregular features were not seen in healthy retinas, but were characteristic features in fundi with retinal dystrophies. There was a correlation between functional vision loss and the extent to which the irregularities occurred in retinal images. Cone densities were found to decrease with an associated decrease in retinal function. AO fundus photography is a reliable technique for assessing and quantifying the changes in the photoreceptor layer as disease progresses. Furthermore, this technique can be useful in cases where visual function tests give borderline or ambiguous results, as it allows visualization of individual photoreceptors.

  16. The effect of recombinant recoverin on the photoresponse of truncated rod photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Erickson, Martha A.; Lagnado, Leon; Zozulya, Sergey; Neubert, Thomas A.; Stryer, Lubert; Baylor, Denis A.

    1998-01-01

    Recoverin is a heterogeneously acylated calcium-binding protein thought to regulate visual transduction. Its effect on the photoresponse was investigated by dialyzing the recombinant protein into truncated salamander rod outer segments. At high Ca2+ (Ca), myristoylated recoverin (Ca-recoverin) prolonged the recovery phase of the bright flash response but had less effect on the dim flash response. The prolongation of recovery had an apparent Kd for Ca of 13 μM and a Hill coefficient of 2. The prolongation was shown to be mediated by inhibition of rhodopsin deactivation. After a sudden imposed drop in Ca concentration, the effect of recoverin switched off with little lag. The myristoyl (C14:0) modification of recoverin increased its activity 12-fold, and the C12:0 or C14:2 acyl group gave similar effects. These experiments support the notion that recoverin mediates Ca-dependent inhibition of rhodopsin phosphorylation and thereby controls light-triggered phosphodiesterase activity, particularly at high light levels. PMID:9600991

  17. Localization of peripherin/rds in the disk membranes of cone and rod photoreceptors: relationship to disk membrane morphogenesis and retinal degeneration

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    The outer segments of vertebrate rod photoreceptor cells consist of an ordered stack of membrane disks, which, except for a few nascent disks at the base of the outer segment, is surrounded by a separate plasma membrane. Previous studies indicate that the protein, peripherin or peripherin/rds, is localized along the rim of mature disks of rod outer segments. A mutation in the gene for this protein has been reported to be responsible for retinal degeneration in the rds mouse. In the present study, we have shown by immunogold labeling of rat and ground squirrel retinas that peripherin/rds is present in the disk rims of cone outer segments as well as rod outer segments. Additionally, in the basal regions of rod and cone outer segments, where disk morphogenesis occurs, we have found that the distribution of peripherin/rds is restricted to a region that is adjacent to the cilium. Extension of its distribution from the cilium coincides with the formation of the disk rim. These results support the model of disk membrane morphogenesis that predicts rim formation to be a second stage of growth, after the first stage in which the ciliary plasma membrane evaginates to form open nascent disks. The results also indicate how the proteins of the outer segment plasma membrane and the disk membranes are sorted into their separate domains: different sets of proteins may be incorporated into membrane outgrowths during different growth stages of disk morphogenesis. Finally, the presence of peripherin/rds protein in both cone and rod outer segment disks, together with the phenotype of the rds mouse, which is characterized by the failure of both rod and cone outer segment formation, suggest that the same rds gene is expressed in both types of photoreceptor cells. PMID:1730772

  18. Loss of Retinoschisin (RS1) Cell Surface Protein in Maturing Mouse Rod Photoreceptors Elevates the Luminance Threshold for Light-Driven Translocation of Transducin But Not Arrestin

    PubMed Central

    Ziccardi, Lucia; Vijayasarathy, Camasamudram; Bush, Ronald A.

    2012-01-01

    Loss of retinoschisin (RS1) in Rs1 knock-out (Rs1–KO) retina produces a post-photoreceptor phenotype similar to X-linked retinoschisis in young males. However, Rs1 is expressed strongly in photoreceptors, and Rs1–KO mice have early reduction in the electroretinogram a-wave. We examined light-activated transducin and arrestin translocation in young Rs1–KO mice as a marker for functional abnormalities in maturing rod photoreceptors. We found a progressive reduction in luminance threshold for transducin translocation in wild-type (WT) retinas between postnatal days P18 and P60. At P21, the threshold in Rs1–KO retinas was 10-fold higher than WT, but it decreased to <2.5-fold higher by P60. Light-activated arrestin translocation and re-translocation of transducin in the dark were not affected. Rs1–KO rod outer segment (ROS) length was significantly shorter than WT at P21 but was comparable with WT at P60. These findings suggested a delay in the structural and functional maturation of Rs1–KO ROS. Consistent with this, transcription factors CRX and NRL, which are fundamental to maturation of rod protein expression, were reduced in ROS of Rs1–KO mice at P21 but not at P60. Expression of transducin was 15–30% lower in P21 Rs1–KO ROS and transducin GTPase hydrolysis was nearly twofold faster, reflecting a 1.7- to 2.5-fold increase in RGS9 (regulator of G-protein signaling) level. Transduction protein expression and activity levels were similar to WT at P60. Transducin translocation threshold elevation indicates photoreceptor functional abnormalities in young Rs1–KO mice. Rapid reduction in threshold coupled with age-related changes in transduction protein levels and transcription factor expression are consistent with delayed maturation of Rs1–KO photoreceptors. PMID:22993419

  19. Fatty Acid Transport Protein 4 (FATP4) Prevents Light-Induced Degeneration of Cone and Rod Photoreceptors by Inhibiting RPE65 Isomerase

    PubMed Central

    Li, Songhua; Lee, Jungsoo; Zhou, Yongdong; Gordon, William C.; Hill, James M.; Bazan, Nicolas G.; Miner, Jeffrey H.; Jin, Minghao

    2013-01-01

    While Rhodopsin is essential for sensing light for vision, it also mediates light-induced apoptosis of photoreceptors in mouse. RPE65, which catalyzes isomerization of all-trans retinyl fatty acid esters to 11-cis retinol (11cROL) in the visual cycle, controls the rhodopsin regeneration rate and photoreceptor susceptibility to light-induced degeneration. Mutations in RPE65 have been linked to blindness in affected children. Despite such importance, the mechanism that regulates RPE65 function remains unclear. Through unbiased expression screening of a bovine retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cDNA library, we have identified elongation of very long-chain fatty acids-like 1 (ELOVL1) and fatty acid transport protein 4 (FATP4), which each have very long-chain fatty acid acyl-CoA synthetase (VLCFA-ACS) activity, as negative regulators of RPE65. We found that the VLCFA derivative lignoceroyl (C24:0)-CoA inhibited synthesis of 11cROL, whereas palmitoyl (C16:0)-CoA promoted synthesis of 11cROL. We further found that competition of FATP4 with RPE65 for the substrate of RPE65 was also involved in the mechanisms by which FATP4 inhibits synthesis of 11cROL. FATP4 was predominantly expressed in RPE, and the FATP4-deficient RPE showed significantly higher isomerase activity. Consistent with these results, the regeneration rate of 11-cis retinaldehyde and the recovery rate for rod light sensitivity were faster in FATP4-deficient mice than wild-type mice. Moreover, FATP4-deficient mice displayed increased accumulation of the cytotoxic all-trans retinaldehyde and hyper susceptibility to light-induced photoreceptor degeneration. Our findings demonstrate that ELOVL1, FATP4, and their products comprise the regulatory elements of RPE65 and play important roles in protecting photoreceptors from degeneration induced by light damage. PMID:23407971

  20. Comparative Quantification in Three-Dimensional Cultures reveals Epigenetic Memory and Higher Efficiency Retinogenesis in iPSCs Derived from Differentiated Rod Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Hiler, Daniel; Chen, Xiang; Hazen, Jennifer; Kupriyanov, Sergey; Carroll, Patrick A.; Qu, Chunxu; Xu, Beisi; Johnson, Dianna; Griffiths, Lyra; Frase, Sharon; Rodriguez, Alberto R.; Martin, Greg; Zhang, Jiakun; Jeon, Jongrye; Fan, Yiping; Finkelstein, David; Eisenman, Robert N.; Baldwin, Kristin; Dyer, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Cell-based therapies to treat retinal degeneration are now being tested in clinical trials. However, it is not known if the source of stem cells is important for the production of differentiated cells suitable for transplantation. To test this, we generated iPSCs murine rod photoreceptors (r-iPSCs) and scored their ability to make retina using a standardized quantitative protocol called STEM-RET. We discovered that r-iPSCs were more efficient at producing differentiated retina than embryonic stem cells (ESCs) or fibroblast-derived iPSCs (f-iPSCs). Retinae derived from f-iPSCs had a reduction in amacrine cells and other inner nuclear layer cells. Integrated epigenetic analysis showed that DNA methylation contributes to the defects in f-iPSC retinogenesis and that rod specific CTCF insulator protein binding sites may promote retinogenes in r-iPSCs. Taken together, our data suggest that the source of stem cells are important for producing retinal neurons in 3D organ cultures. PMID:26140606

  1. Functional analysis of rod monochromacy-associated missense mutations in the CNGA3 subunit of the cone photoreceptor cGMP-gated channel.

    PubMed

    Muraki-Oda, Sanae; Toyoda, Futoshi; Okada, Akira; Tanabe, Shoko; Yamade, Shinichi; Ueyama, Hisao; Matsuura, Hiroshi; Ohji, Masahito

    2007-10-12

    Thirty-nine missense mutations, which had been identified in rod monochromacy or related disorders, in the CNGA3 subunit of cone photoreceptor cGMP-gated channels were analyzed. HEK293 cells were transfected with cDNA of the human CNGA3 subunit harboring each of these mutations in an expression vector. Patch-clamp recordings demonstrated that 32 of the 39 mutants did not show cGMP-activated current, suggesting that these 32 mutations cause a loss of function of the channels. From the remaining 7 mutants that showed cGMP-activated current, two mutations in the cyclic nucleotide-binding domain, T565M or E593K, were further studied. The half-maximal activating concentration (K(1/2)) for cGMP in the homomeric CNGA3-T565M channels (160microM) was 17.8-fold higher than that of the homomeric wild-type CNGA3 channels (9.0microM). Conversely, the K(1/2) for cGMP in the homomeric CNGA3-E593K channels (3.0microM) was 3-fold lower than that of the homomeric wild-type CNGA3 channels. These results suggest that the T565M and E593K mutations alter the apparent affinity for cGMP of the channels to cause cone dysfunction, resulting in rod monochromacy. PMID:17693388

  2. Phospholipase D from photoreceptor rod outer segments is a downstream effector of RhoA: evidence of a light-dependent mechanism.

    PubMed

    Salvador, Gabriela A; Giusto, Norma M

    2006-07-01

    Photoreceptor cells contain rod outer segments (ROS) which are specialized light-sensitive organelles. The biological function of ROS is to generate a photoresponse, which occurs via the classic transducin-mediated pathway. Moreover, ROS undergo light-regulated membrane turnover and protein translocation whose mechanisms have not been fully elucidated to date. Phospholipase D (PLD) is a key enzyme involved in lipid signal transduction and membrane trafficking. We have previously reported that PLD activity is present in purified ROS (Salvador, G.A., Giusto, N.M., 1998. Characterization of phospholipase D activity in bovine photoreceptor membranes. Lipids 33, 853-860). We now demonstrate that ROS PLD activity is enhanced by phosphatidylinositol bisphosphate (PIP2) and cytosolic factors in a GTP dependent-manner. Western blot analysis demonstrates the presence of PLD1 isoform in purified ROS. In ROS obtained from dark-adapted retinas (DROS), PIP2-dependent PLD activity was higher than that observed in ROS obtained from light-adapted retinas (LROS). In addition, experiments carried out in the presence of C3 toxin inhibited PLD activity from DROS whereas pertussis toxin did not affect the enzyme activity. Western blot analysis demonstrates the presence of RhoA, a PLD upstream-regulator. Moreover, RhoA levels were higher in DROS with respect to those in LROS. The present study reports evidence of the involvement of the small G-protein, RhoA, in ROS PLD regulation. Our data strongly suggest that RhoA regulates ROS PLD activity under a light-dependent mechanism. PMID:16630612

  3. Characterisation of the canine rod-cone dysplasia type one gene (rod photoreceptor cGMP phosphodiesterase beta subunit (PDEB)) - a model for human retinitis pigmentosa

    SciTech Connect

    Clements, P.J.M.; Gregory, C.Y.; Petersen-Jones, S.M.

    1994-09-01

    Rod-cone dysplasia type one (rod-1) is an early onset, autosomal recessive retinal dystrophy segregating in the Irish setter breed. It is a model for certain forms of human autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (arRP) caused by mutations in the same gene, PDEB. We confirmed the codon 807 Trp to Stop mutation and were the first to show cosegregation of the mutant allele with disease in a pedigree. We believe that this currently represents the best animal model available for some aspects of arRP, since canine tissues are relatively easy to access compared to human and yet the canine eye is of comparable size, unlike that of the rd mouse. This facilitates therapeutic intervention particularly at the subretinal level. In order to more fully investigate this model we have been characterizing the PDEB gene in the normal dog. Using PCR we have partially mapped the intron/exon structure, demonstrating a very high degree of evolutionary conservation with the mouse and human genes. RT-PCR has been used to reveal expression in a variety of neural and non-neural tissues. A PCR product spanning exons 19 to 22 (which also contains the site for the rcd-1 mutation) is detected in retina but also in tissues such as visual cortex, cerebral cortex, cerebellum, lateral geniculate nucleus, adrenal gland, lung, kidney and ovary. All of these tissues gave a negative result with primers for rds/peripherin, a gene which is expressed in rods and cones. This raises interesting questions about the regulation of PDEB transcripts which is initially being investigated by Northern analysis. In addition, anchored PCR techniques have generated upstream genomic sequences and we are currently mapping the 5{prime} extent of the mRNA transcript in the retina. This will facilitate the analysis of potential upstream promoter elements involved in directing expression.

  4. Measurement of Photon Statistics with Live Photoreceptor Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sim, Nigel; Cheng, Mei Fun; Bessarab, Dmitri; Jones, C. Michael; Krivitsky, Leonid A.

    2012-09-01

    We analyzed the electrophysiological response of an isolated rod photoreceptor of Xenopus laevis under stimulation by coherent and pseudothermal light sources. Using the suction-electrode technique for single cell recordings and a fiber optics setup for light delivery allowed measurements of the major statistical characteristics of the rod response. The results indicate differences in average responses of rod cells to coherent and pseudothermal light of the same intensity and also differences in signal-to-noise ratios and second-order intensity correlation functions. These findings should be relevant for interdisciplinary studies seeking applications of quantum optics in biology.

  5. X-ray diffraction and electron microscope study of phase separation in rod outer segment photoreceptor membrane multilayers.

    PubMed Central

    Gruner, S M; Rothschild, K J; Clark, N A

    1982-01-01

    Phase separation in artificially stacked multilayers of isolated bovine retinal rod outer segment (ROS) membranes has been examined via x-ray diffraction and electron microscopy. Specimens were prepared by isopotential spin drying followed with partial hydration by equilibration against moist gas streams. Upon dehydration, the multilamellar membrane phase assumes a binary phase composition consisting of concentrated protein-containing lamellae interspersed with microdomains of hexagonally packed tubes of lipid in a HII configuration. The HII lattice is geometrically coupled to the lamellar phase with one set of hexagonal crystal planes co-planar to the local membrane lamellae. The hexagonal microdomains bear a striking resemblance to the "paracrystalline inclusions" observed in fast-frozen, intact frog ROS (Corless and Costello. 1981. Exp. Eye Res. 32:217). The lamellar lattice is characterized by an unusually small degree of disorder. Sharp lamellar diffraction with a 120 A unit cell is observed (at near total dehydration) to a resolution of 6 A. A model consistent with the data is that a multilamellar array of ROS disks is stable as long as the external disk surfaces are kept sufficiently far apart. If the distance between the membranes is allowed to shrink below a certain critical value, the disk lipids spontaneously convert to a nonbilayer phase. This suggests that the structure of the ROS is stabilized by an internal framework that acts to keep the disks apart from one another and from the plasmalemma. Thus, the necessity of avoiding phase separations may provide a rationale for the peculiar morphology of the ROS. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 2 FIGURE 5 FIGURE 7 PMID:7139024

  6. Photoreceptor Processing Speed and Input Resistance Changes during Light Adaptation Correlate with Spectral Class in the Bumblebee, Bombus impatiens

    PubMed Central

    Skorupski, Peter; Chittka, Lars

    2011-01-01

    Colour vision depends on comparison of signals from photoreceptors with different spectral sensitivities. However, response properties of photoreceptor cells may differ in ways other than spectral tuning. In insects, for example, broadband photoreceptors, with a major sensitivity peak in the green region of the spectrum (>500 nm), drive fast visual processes, which are largely blind to chromatic signals from more narrowly-tuned photoreceptors with peak sensitivities in the blue and UV regions of the spectrum. In addition, electrophysiological properties of the photoreceptor membrane may result in differences in response dynamics of photoreceptors of similar spectral class between species, and different spectral classes within a species. We used intracellular electrophysiological techniques to investigate response dynamics of the three spectral classes of photoreceptor underlying trichromatic colour vision in the bumblebee, Bombus impatiens, and we compare these with previously published data from a related species, Bombus terrestris. In both species, we found significantly faster responses in green, compared with blue- or UV-sensitive photoreceptors, although all 3 photoreceptor types are slower in B. impatiens than in B. terrestris. Integration times for light-adapted B. impatiens photoreceptors (estimated from impulse response half-width) were 11.3±1.6 ms for green photoreceptors compared with 18.6±4.4 ms and 15.6±4.4 for blue and UV, respectively. We also measured photoreceptor input resistance in dark- and light-adapted conditions. All photoreceptors showed a decrease in input resistance during light adaptation, but this decrease was considerably larger (declining to about 22% of the dark value) in green photoreceptors, compared to blue and UV (41% and 49%, respectively). Our results suggest that the conductances associated with light adaptation are largest in green photoreceptors, contributing to their greater temporal processing speed. We suggest that the

  7. Hemispheric Correlates of the Rod-And-Frame Test.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berlin, Donna F.; Languis, Marlin L.

    1981-01-01

    Right-handed sixth graders were administered the WISC Block Design and verbal and nonverbal versions of the Rod-and-Frame Test (RFT), measuring field dependence/independence. Results seemed to reflect a right hemisphere processing for the nonverbal RFT and a possible sex bias against girls in its traditional verbal administration. (Author/SJL)

  8. Photoreceptor engineering

    PubMed Central

    Ziegler, Thea; Möglich, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Sensory photoreceptors not only control diverse adaptive responses in Nature, but as light-regulated actuators they also provide the foundation for optogenetics, the non-invasive and spatiotemporally precise manipulation of cellular events by light. Novel photoreceptors have been engineered that establish control by light over manifold biological processes previously inaccessible to optogenetic intervention. Recently, photoreceptor engineering has witnessed a rapid development, and light-regulated actuators for the perturbation of a plethora of cellular events are now available. Here, we review fundamental principles of photoreceptors and light-regulated allostery. Photoreceptors dichotomize into associating receptors that alter their oligomeric state as part of light-regulated allostery and non-associating receptors that do not. A survey of engineered photoreceptors pinpoints light-regulated association reactions and order-disorder transitions as particularly powerful and versatile design principles. Photochromic photoreceptors that are bidirectionally toggled by two light colors augur enhanced spatiotemporal resolution and use as photoactivatable fluorophores. By identifying desirable traits in engineered photoreceptors, we provide pointers for the design of future, light-regulated actuators. PMID:26137467

  9. Restoration of vision after transplantation of photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Pearson, R A; Barber, A C; Rizzi, M; Hippert, C; Xue, T; West, E L; Duran, Y; Smith, A J; Chuang, J Z; Azam, S A; Luhmann, U F O; Benucci, A; Sung, C H; Bainbridge, J W; Carandini, M; Yau, K-W; Sowden, J C; Ali, R R

    2012-05-01

    Cell transplantation is a potential strategy for treating blindness caused by the loss of photoreceptors. Although transplanted rod-precursor cells are able to migrate into the adult retina and differentiate to acquire the specialized morphological features of mature photoreceptor cells, the fundamental question remains whether transplantation of photoreceptor cells can actually improve vision. Here we provide evidence of functional rod-mediated vision after photoreceptor transplantation in adult Gnat1−/− mice, which lack rod function and are a model of congenital stationary night blindness. We show that transplanted rod precursors form classic triad synaptic connections with second-order bipolar and horizontal cells in the recipient retina. The newly integrated photoreceptor cells are light-responsive with dim-flash kinetics similar to adult wild-type photoreceptors. By using intrinsic imaging under scotopic conditions we demonstrate that visual signals generated by transplanted rods are projected to higher visual areas, including V1. Moreover, these cells are capable of driving optokinetic head tracking and visually guided behaviour in the Gnat1−/− mouse under scotopic conditions. Together, these results demonstrate the feasibility of photoreceptor transplantation as a therapeutic strategy for restoring vision after retinal degeneration.

  10. Correlation between Depth Perception by Three-Rods Test and Stereoacuity by Distance Randot Stereotest

    PubMed Central

    Negayama, Ryo; Sakata, Hiroyuki; Hasebe, Kayoko

    2014-01-01

    Background The examination of depth perception with three-rods test, in addition to visual acuity testing, is required to obtain motor vehicle license to drive taxies and trucks, according to the Road Traffic Act in Japan. The aim of this study was to examine whether the results of the three-rods test would correlate with the results of static stereopsis tests, used in ophthalmic practice. Methods This study involved 54 normal subjects, 9 women and 45 men, with ages ranging from 18 to 25 (mean, 20.8) years. All had visual acuity of 0.8 or better with or without glasses or contact lenses correction and had no strabismus at the distant (5 m) or near (0.3 m) fixation. TNO Stereotest and Titmus Stereotest were examined at 40 cm while Distance Randot Stereotest was at 3 m. At three-rods test, a central rod was moved at the speed of 50 mm/sec forward and backward automatically against two laterally located fixed rods, placed inside the illuminated box. An examinee at the distance of 2.5 m observed the rods inside the box from a small viewing window and pushed a button to stop the central rod in alignment with the fixed rods. Erred distance (mm) of the central rod from the fixed rods as a mean of 4 measurements was correlated with stereoacuity in second of arc, measured by three kinds of the stereopsis tests. Results The erred distance of three-rods test was positively correlated with static stereoacuity at distance measured with Distance Randot Stereotest (ρ = 0.418, p = 0.0023, Spearman rank correlation test) and also with the other stereopsis tests at near fixation. The stereoacuity at near fixation, measured by TNO Stereotest and Titmus Stereotest, was positively correlated with each other (ρ = 0.431, p = 0.0017). Conclusion Three-rods test, examining depth perception, together with the response by eye-hand coordination, gave consistent results with distant static stereoacuity when measured with Distance Randot Stereotest. PMID:25058604

  11. Microglial phagocytosis of living photoreceptors contributes to inherited retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Lian; Zabel, Matthew K; Wang, Xu; Ma, Wenxin; Shah, Parth; Fariss, Robert N; Qian, Haohua; Parkhurst, Christopher N; Gan, Wen-Biao; Wong, Wai T

    2015-07-02

    Retinitis pigmentosa, caused predominantly by mutations in photoreceptor genes, currently lacks comprehensive treatment. We discover that retinal microglia contribute non-cell autonomously to rod photoreceptor degeneration by primary phagocytosis of living rods. Using rd10 mice, we found that the initiation of rod degeneration is accompanied by early infiltration of microglia, upregulation of phagocytic molecules in microglia, and presentation of "eat-me" signals on mutated rods. On live-cell imaging, infiltrating microglia interact dynamically with photoreceptors via motile processes and engage in rapid phagocytic engulfment of non-apoptotic rods. Microglial contribution to rod demise is evidenced by morphological and functional amelioration of photoreceptor degeneration following genetic ablation of retinal microglia. Molecular inhibition of microglial phagocytosis using the vitronectin receptor antagonist cRGD also improved morphological and functional parameters of degeneration. Our findings highlight primary microglial phagocytosis as a contributing mechanism underlying cell death in retinitis pigmentosa and implicate microglia as a potential cellular target for therapy.

  12. Cone Photoreceptor Sensitivities and Unique Hue Chromatic Responses: Correlation and Causation Imply the Physiological Basis of Unique Hues

    PubMed Central

    Pridmore, Ralph W.

    2013-01-01

    This paper relates major functions at the start and end of the color vision process. The process starts with three cone photoreceptors transducing light into electrical responses. Cone sensitivities were once expected to be Red Green Blue color matching functions (to mix colors) but microspectrometry proved otherwise: they instead peak in yellowish, greenish, and blueish hues. These physiological functions are an enigma, unmatched with any set of psychophysical (behavioral) functions. The end-result of the visual process is color sensation, whose essential percepts are unique (or pure) hues red, yellow, green, blue. Unique hues cannot be described by other hues, but can describe all other hues, e.g., that hue is reddish-blue. They are carried by four opponent chromatic response curves but the literature does not specify whether each curve represents a range of hues or only one hue (a unique) over its wavelength range. Here the latter is demonstrated, confirming that opponent chromatic responses define, and may be termed, unique hue chromatic responses. These psychophysical functions also are an enigma, unmatched with any physiological functions or basis. Here both enigmas are solved by demonstrating the three cone sensitivity curves and the three spectral chromatic response curves are almost identical sets (Pearson correlation coefficients r from 0.95–1.0) in peak wavelengths, curve shapes, math functions, and curve crossover wavelengths, though previously unrecognized due to presentation of curves in different formats, e.g., log, linear. (Red chromatic response curve is largely nonspectral and thus derives from two cones.) Close correlation combined with deterministic causation implies cones are the physiological basis of unique hues. This match of three physiological and three psychophysical functions is unique in color vision. PMID:24204755

  13. Temperature dependence of dark-adapted sensitivity and light-adaptation in photoreceptors with A1 visual pigments: a comparison of frog L-cones and rods.

    PubMed

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

    2009-07-01

    Flash responses of L-cones and rods were recorded as ERG mass potentials in the frog retina at different temperatures (2-25 degrees C). The purpose was to elucidate factors that make cones faster and less sensitive than rods, particularly the possible role of thermal activation of L-cone visual pigment in maintaining a "light-adapted" state even in darkness. Up to ca. 15 degrees C, cones and rods were desensitized roughly equally by warming (Q(10) approximately 2.2-2.7), retaining a 5-fold sensitivity difference. In this range, the cone/rod difference must depend on factors other than thermal activation of the visual pigment. Above 15 degrees C, cones showed an additional component of desensitization compared with rods, coupled to accelerated response shut-off. This behavior is consistent with light-adaptation from temperature-dependent intrinsic activity (dark light). The apparent dark light as measured by the minimum background intensities needed to affect sensitivity and/or kinetics increased by ca. 10-fold between 15 and 25 degrees C, whereas reported increases in visual-pigment activation rates over this range are less than 5-fold. We conclude that the dark state of frog L-cones above 15 degrees C may be largely set by thermal activation of the phototransduction machinery, but only part of the experimentally determined dark light can be ascribed to the visual pigment.

  14. Why rods and cones?

    PubMed

    Lamb, T D

    2016-02-01

    Under twenty-first-century metropolitan conditions, almost all of our vision is mediated by cones and the photopic system, yet cones make up barely 5% of our retinal photoreceptors. This paper looks at reasons why we additionally possess rods and a scotopic system, and asks why rods comprise 95% of our retinal photoreceptors. It considers the ability of rods to reliably signal the arrival of individual photons of light, as well as the ability of the retina to process these single-photon signals, and it discusses the advantages that accrue. Drawbacks in the arrangement, including the very slow dark adaptation of scotopic vision, are also considered. Finally, the timing of the evolution of cone and rod photoreceptors, the retina, and the camera-style eye is summarised.

  15. Active opsin loci adopt intrachromosomal loops that depend on the photoreceptor transcription factor network.

    PubMed

    Peng, Guang-Hua; Chen, Shiming

    2011-10-25

    Rod and cone opsin genes are expressed in a mutually exclusive manner in their respective photoreceptor subtypes in the mammalian retina. Previous transgenic mouse studies showed that functional interactions between the distal enhancer and proximal promoter of rhodopsin and long/medium-wavelength (L/M) opsin genes are essential for regulating their cell-type-specific transcription. We have used chromosomal conformation capture assays in mouse retinas to investigate the molecular mechanism responsible for this interaction. Here we show that each opsin gene forms intrachromosomal loops in the appropriate photoreceptor subtype, while maintaining a linear configuration in other cell types where it is silent. The enhancer forms physical contacts not only with the promoter but also with the coding regions of each opsin locus. ChIP assays showed that cell-type-specific target binding by three key photoreceptor transcription factors-cone--rod homeobox (CRX), neural retina leucine zipper (NRL), and nuclear receptor subfamily 2, group E, member 3 (NR2E3)--is required for the appropriate local chromosomal organization and transcription of rod and cone opsins. Similar correlations between chromosomal loops and active transcription of opsin genes were also observed in human photoreceptors. Furthermore, quantitative chromosomal conformation capture on human retinas from two male donors showed that the L/M enhancer locus control region (LCR) loops with either the L or M promoter in a near 3:1 ratio, supporting distance-dependent competition between L and M for LCR. Altogether, our results suggest that the photoreceptor transcription factor network cooperatively regulates the chromosomal organization of target genes to precisely control photoreceptor subtype-specific gene expression.

  16. Lack of mGluR6-related cascade elements leads to retrograde trans-synaptic effects on rod photoreceptor synapses via matrix-associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Tummala, Shanti R; Dhingra, Anuradha; Fina, Marie E; Li, Jian J; Ramakrishnan, Hariharasubramanian; Vardi, Noga

    2016-06-01

    Heterotrimeric G-proteins couple metabotropic receptors to downstream effectors. In retinal ON bipolar cells, Go couples the metabotropic receptor mGluR6 to the TRPM1 channel and closes it in the dark, thus hyperpolarizing the cell. Light, via GTPase-activating proteins, deactivates Go , opens TRPM1 and depolarizes the cell. Go comprises Gαo1 , Gβ3 and Gγ13; all are necessary for efficient coupling. In addition, Gβ3 contributes to trafficking of certain cascade proteins and to maintaining the synaptic structure. The goal of this study was to determine the role of Gαo1 in maintaining the cascade and synaptic integrity. Using mice lacking Gαo1 , we quantified the immunostaining of certain mGluR6-related components. Deleting Gαo1 greatly reduced staining for Gβ3, Gγ13, Gβ5, RGS11, RGS7 and R9AP. Deletion of Gαo1 did not affect mGluR6, TRPM1 or PCP2. In addition, deleting Gαo1 reduced the number of rod bipolar dendrites that invaginate the rod terminal, similar to the effect seen in the absence of mGluR6, Gβ3 or the matrix-associated proteins, pikachurin, dystroglycan and dystrophin, which are localized presynaptically to the rod bipolar cell. We therefore tested mice lacking mGluR6, Gαo1 and Gβ3 for expression of these matrix-associated proteins. In all three genotypes, staining intensity for these proteins was lower than in wild type, suggesting a retrograde trans-synaptic effect. We propose that the mGluR6 macromolecular complex is connected to the presynaptic rod terminal via a protein chain that includes the matrix-associated proteins. When a component of the macromolecular chain is missing, the chain may fall apart and loosen the dendritic tip adherence within the invagination. PMID:27037829

  17. Photovoltage of Rods and Cones in the Macaque Retina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneeweis, David M.; Schnapf, Julie L.

    1995-05-01

    The kinetics, gain, and reliability of light responses of rod and cone photoreceptors are important determinants of overall visual sensitivity. In voltage recordings from photoreceptors in an intact primate retina, rods were found to be functionally isolated from each other, unlike the tightly coupled rods of cold-blooded vertebrates. Cones were observed to receive excitatory input from rods, which indicates that the cone pathway also processes rod signals. This input might be expected to degrade the spatial resolution of mesopic vision.

  18. Rod outer segment maintenance is enhanced in the presence of bFGF, CNTF and GDNF.

    PubMed

    Carwile, M E; Culbert, R B; Sturdivant, R L; Kraft, T W

    1998-06-01

    We employed a morphological assay of outer segment collapse to determine if growth factors or other supplements directly affect dissociated rod photoreceptors in vitro. The morphological changes in outer segments were correlated with the light responsiveness of rods. Time-lapse video microscopy was used to observe the collapse of rod outer segments from isolated single cells and small clumps of cells. A consistent pattern of outer segment collapse into the inner segment was observed, yielding a convenient assay of the effects of neurotrophic factors on photoreceptor functional maintenance. The functional state of rods, defined as light-responsiveness, was measured with suction electrode recordings and matched with the various stages of outer segment collapse. Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) and glial cell-line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) at a high concentration, yielded statistically significant improvements in rat outer segment survival times. Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), which rescues photoreceptors in several rodent models of retinal degeneration, produced a significant increase in survival time in the presence of the cofactor heparin. In 4 out of 10 cases using human tisue, bFGF also yielded a significant increase in survival times. When brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was applied to rat rods, outer segment survival times did not change. Outer segments collapsed more quickly when either pigment epithelial cell derived factor (PEDF) or sugar N-acetyl D-galactosamine (NAD-gal) were present. Our results show that rod photoreceptors can respond to bFGF, GDNF and CNTF in vitro and provide evidence for a direct effect of these neurotrophic factors on rods. The rapid collapse of isolated photoreceptors in this model provides a convenient means for testing various neurotrophic agents and the induced cellular responses. PMID:9657912

  19. The human beta-subunit of rod photoreceptor cGMP phosphodiesterase: complete retinal cDNA sequence and evidence for expression in brain.

    PubMed

    Collins, C; Hutchinson, G; Kowbel, D; Riess, O; Weber, B; Hayden, M R

    1992-07-01

    We have identified and sequenced cDNA clones that encode for the human beta-subunit of rod cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDEB). A single 2565-bp open reading frame that codes for an 854-amino-acid protein was identified. The human beta-subunit protein is 90% identical to the bovine beta-subunit and 91% identical to the mouse protein. Northern blot analysis indicates that the gene is expressed as an abundant 3.5-kb transcript in retina and as a rare 2.9-kb transcript in brain. The isolation of cDNAs from human brain cDNA libraries confirms the brain as a site of expression for this gene. The molecular defect underlying retinal degeneration in the rd mouse has been found to be a nonsense mutation in the beta-subunit of the mouse cGMP PDE, resulting in a truncated protein (Pittler et al., 1991b, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 88: 8322-8326). The molecular cloning of the cDNA encoding for the PDEB represents the first step in establishing whether this gene plays a causative role in any one of the several human hereditary retinopathies or, based on its localization to chromosome 4p 16.3, in the pathogenesis of Huntington disease.

  20. Functional significance of the taper of vertebrate cone photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Hárosi, Ferenc I.

    2012-01-01

    Vertebrate photoreceptors are commonly distinguished based on the shape of their outer segments: those of cones taper, whereas the ones from rods do not. The functional advantages of cone taper, a common occurrence in vertebrate retinas, remain elusive. In this study, we investigate this topic using theoretical analyses aimed at revealing structure–function relationships in photoreceptors. Geometrical optics combined with spectrophotometric and morphological data are used to support the analyses and to test predictions. Three functions are considered for correlations between taper and functionality. The first function proposes that outer segment taper serves to compensate for self-screening of the visual pigment contained within. The second function links outer segment taper to compensation for a signal-to-noise ratio decline along the longitudinal dimension. Both functions are supported by the data: real cones taper more than required for these compensatory roles. The third function relates outer segment taper to the optical properties of the inner compartment whereby the primary determinant is the inner segment’s ability to concentrate light via its ellipsoid. In support of this idea, the rod/cone ratios of primarily diurnal animals are predicted based on a principle of equal light flux gathering between photoreceptors. In addition, ellipsoid concentration factor, a measure of ellipsoid ability to concentrate light onto the outer segment, correlates positively with outer segment taper expressed as a ratio of characteristic lengths, where critical taper is the yardstick. Depending on a light-funneling property and the presence of focusing organelles such as oil droplets, cone outer segments can be reduced in size to various degrees. We conclude that outer segment taper is but one component of a miniaturization process that reduces metabolic costs while improving signal detection. Compromise solutions in the various retinas and retinal regions occur between

  1. Low aqueous solubility of 11-cis-retinal limits the rate of pigment formation and dark adaptation in salamander rods.

    PubMed

    Frederiksen, Rikard; Boyer, Nicholas P; Nickle, Benjamin; Chakrabarti, Kalyan S; Koutalos, Yiannis; Crouch, Rosalie K; Oprian, Daniel; Cornwall, M Carter

    2012-06-01

    We report experiments designed to test the hypothesis that the aqueous solubility of 11-cis-retinoids plays a significant role in the rate of visual pigment regeneration. Therefore, we have compared the aqueous solubility and the partition coefficients in photoreceptor membranes of native 11-cis-retinal and an analogue retinoid, 11-cis 4-OH retinal, which has a significantly higher solubility in aqueous medium. We have then correlated these parameters with the rates of pigment regeneration and sensitivity recovery that are observed when bleached intact salamander rod photoreceptors are treated with physiological solutions containing these retinoids. We report the following results: (a) 11-cis 4-OH retinal is more soluble in aqueous buffer than 11-cis-retinal. (b) Both 11-cis-retinal and 11-cis 4-OH retinal have extremely high partition coefficients in photoreceptor membranes, though the partition coefficient of 11-cis-retinal is roughly 50-fold greater than that of 11-cis 4-OH retinal. (c) Intact bleached isolated rods treated with solutions containing equimolar amounts of 11-cis-retinal or 11-cis 4-OH retinal form functional visual pigments that promote full recovery of dark current, sensitivity, and response kinetics. However, rods treated with 11-cis 4-OH retinal regenerated on average fivefold faster than rods treated with 11-cis-retinal. (d) Pigment regeneration from recombinant and wild-type opsin in solution is slower when treated with 11-cis 4-OH retinal than with 11-cis-retinal. Based on these observations, we propose a model in which aqueous solubility of cis-retinoids within the photoreceptor cytosol can place a limit on the rate of visual pigment regeneration in vertebrate photoreceptors. We conclude that the cytosolic gap between the plasma membrane and the disk membranes presents a bottleneck for retinoid flux that results in slowed pigment regeneration and dark adaptation in rod photoreceptors.

  2. Photoreceptor development in premetamorphic and metamorphic Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Parker, Ryan O; Mccarragher, Brent; Crouch, Rosalie; Darden, Alix G

    2010-03-01

    Transgenic Xenopus laevis are commonly used to study gene expression in photoreceptors, but only red rods and red cones are known to exist in the pre-metamorphic stages commonly used in transgenic studies. Using RT-PCR, this study shows that violet cones develop in early pre-metamorphic stages (Stage 35) with the red rods and red cones. Green rod development began in Stage 53 with the onset of metamorphosis.

  3. Microglial phagocytosis of living photoreceptors contributes to inherited retinal degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Lian; Zabel, Matthew K; Wang, Xu; Ma, Wenxin; Shah, Parth; Fariss, Robert N; Qian, Haohua; Parkhurst, Christopher N; Gan, Wen-Biao; Wong, Wai T

    2015-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa, caused predominantly by mutations in photoreceptor genes, currently lacks comprehensive treatment. We discover that retinal microglia contribute non-cell autonomously to rod photoreceptor degeneration by primary phagocytosis of living rods. Using rd10 mice, we found that the initiation of rod degeneration is accompanied by early infiltration of microglia, upregulation of phagocytic molecules in microglia, and presentation of “eat-me” signals on mutated rods. On live-cell imaging, infiltrating microglia interact dynamically with photoreceptors via motile processes and engage in rapid phagocytic engulfment of non-apoptotic rods. Microglial contribution to rod demise is evidenced by morphological and functional amelioration of photoreceptor degeneration following genetic ablation of retinal microglia. Molecular inhibition of microglial phagocytosis using the vitronectin receptor antagonist cRGD also improved morphological and functional parameters of degeneration. Our findings highlight primary microglial phagocytosis as a contributing mechanism underlying cell death in retinitis pigmentosa and implicate microglia as a potential cellular target for therapy. PMID:26139610

  4. Basal bodies exhibit polarized positioning in zebrafish cone photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Ramsey, Michelle; Perkins, Brian D.

    2012-01-01

    The asymmetric positioning of basal bodies, and therefore cilia, is often critical for proper cilia function. This planar polarity is critical for motile cilia function but has not been extensively investigated for non-motile cilia or for sensory cilia such as vertebrate photoreceptors. Zebrafish photoreceptors form an organized mosaic ideal for investigating cilia positioning. We report that in the adult retina, the basal bodies of red, green-, and blue-sensitive cone photoreceptors localized asymmetrically on the cell edge nearest to the optic nerve. In contrast, no patterning was seen in the basal bodies of ultraviolet-sensitive cones or in rod photoreceptors. The asymmetric localization of basal bodies was consistent in all regions of the adult retina. Basal body patterning was unaffected in the cones of the XOPS-mCFP transgenic line, which lacks rod photoreceptors. Finally, the adult pattern was not seen in 7 day post fertilization (dpf) larvae as basal bodies were randomly distributed in all the photoreceptor subtypes. These results establish the asymmetrical localization of basal bodies in red-, green-, and blue-sensitive cones in adult zebrafish retinas but not in larvae. This pattern suggests an active cellular mechanism regulated the positioning of basal bodies after the transition to the adult mosaic and that rods do not seem to be necessary for the patterning of cone basal bodies. PMID:23171982

  5. Digitonin effects on photoreceptor adenylate cyclase.

    PubMed

    Bitensky, M W; Gorman, R E; Miller, W H

    1972-03-24

    Adenylate cyclase is described in a number of photoreceptor membranes. Vertebrate rod outer segments contain light-regulated cyclase, and light regulation is abolished by digitonin. Disruption of microvilli in cone and rhabdomphotoreceptors is also associated with loss of light regulation and retention of full enzymic activity. The data suggest that inhibitory constraint provides regulation in cyclase systems and that disruption of membrane structure uncouples catalytic and regulatory elements.

  6. Optimal design of photoreceptor mosaics: why we do not see color at night.

    PubMed

    Manning, Jeremy R; Brainard, David H

    2009-01-01

    While color vision mediated by rod photoreceptors in dim light is possible (Kelber & Roth, 2006), most animals, including humans, do not see in color at night. This is because their retinas contain only a single class of rod photoreceptors. Many of these same animals have daylight color vision, mediated by multiple classes of cone photoreceptors. We develop a general formulation, based on Bayesian decision theory, to evaluate the efficacy of various retinal photoreceptor mosaics. The formulation evaluates each mosaic under the assumption that its output is processed to optimally estimate the image. It also explicitly takes into account the statistics of the environmental image ensemble. Using the general formulation, we consider the trade-off between monochromatic and dichromatic retinal designs as a function of overall illuminant intensity. We are able to demonstrate a set of assumptions under which the prevalent biological pattern represents optimal processing. These assumptions include an image ensemble characterized by high correlations between image intensities at nearby locations, as well as high correlations between intensities in different wavelength bands. They also include a constraint on receptor photopigment biophysics and/or the information carried by different wavelengths that produces an asymmetry in the signal-to-noise ratio of the output of different receptor classes. Our results thus provide an optimality explanation for the evolution of color vision for daylight conditions and monochromatic vision for nighttime conditions. An additional result from our calculations is that regular spatial interleaving of two receptor classes in a dichromatic retina yields performance superior to that of a retina where receptors of the same class are clumped together.

  7. Ocular anatomy and retinal photoreceptors in a skink, the sleepy lizard (Tiliqua rugosa).

    PubMed

    New, Shaun T D; Hemmi, Jan M; Kerr, Gregory D; Bull, C Michael

    2012-10-01

    The Australian sleepy lizard (Tiliqua rugosa) is a large day-active skink which occupies stable overlapping home ranges and maintains long-term monogamous relationships. Its behavioral ecology has been extensively studied, making the sleepy lizard an ideal model for investigation of the lizard visual system and its specializations, for which relatively little is known. We examine the morphology, density, and distribution of retinal photoreceptors and describe the anatomy of the sleepy lizard eye. The sleepy lizard retina is composed solely of photoreceptors containing oil droplets, a characteristic of cones. Two groups could be distinguished; single cones and double cones, consistent with morphological descriptions of photoreceptors in other diurnal lizards. Although all photoreceptors were cone-like in morphology, a subset of photoreceptors displayed immunoreactivity to rhodopsin-the visual pigment of rods. This finding suggests that while the morphological properties of rod photoreceptors have been lost, photopigment protein composition has been conserved during evolutionary history.

  8. Steady-state film-boiling data in rod-bundle geometry and non-equilibrium correlation assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Yoder, G.L.; Morris, D.G.; Mullins, C.B.; Ott, L.J.; Reed, D.A.

    1982-01-01

    A series of 22 steady-state, rod bundle, dispersed flow film boiling experiments has been performed in the Thermal-Hydraulic Test Facility (THTF), a pressurized-water loop containing 64 full-length electrically heated rods. Test parameters in the upflow experiments cover a wide range of conditions typical of those which might be encountered during a nuclear reactor loss-of-coolant accident. Local equilibrium fluid conditions were calculated using mass and energy conservation considerations. Experimentally determined heat transfer coefficients were compared to several available film boiling heat transfer correlations: Dougall-Rohsenow, Groeneveld 5.7, Groeneveld-Delorme, Chen, Jones-Zuber, and Yoder-Rohsenow. The Groeneveld 5.7 correlation tended to predict the data better than any other correlation tested. The Dougall-Rohsenow correlation tends to overpredict the data while the Yoder-Rohsenow correlation predicted the data better than the other nonequilibrium correlations examined. However, all of the nonequilibrium correlations generally underpredict the heat transfer.

  9. Immunocytochemical analysis of photoreceptors in the tiger salamander retina

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jian; Wu, Samuel M.

    2013-01-01

    In the tiger salamander retina, visual signals are transmitted to the inner retina via six morphologically distinct types of photoreceptors: large/small rods, large/small single cones, and double cones composed of principal and accessory members. The objective of this study was to determine the morphology of these photoreceptors and their synaptic interconnection with bipolar cells and horizontal cells in the outer plexiform layer (OPL). Here we showed that glutamate antibodies labeled all photoreceptors and recoverin antibodies strongly labeled all cones and weakly labeled all rods. Antibodies against calbindin selectively stained accessory members of double cones. Antibodies against S-cone opsin stained small rods, a subpopulation of small single cones, and the outer segments of accessory double cones and a subtype of unidentified single cones. On average, large rods and small S-cone opsin positive rods accounted for 98.6% and 1.4% of all rods, respectively. Large/small cones, principle/accessory double cones, S-cone opsin positive small single cones, and S-cone opsin positive unidentified single cones accounted for about 66.9%, 23%, 4.5%, and 5.6% of the total cones, respectively. Moreover, the differential connection between rods/cones and bipolar/horizontal cells and the wide distribution of AMPA receptor subunits GluR2/3 and GluR4 at the rod/cone synapses were observed. These results provide anatomical evidence for the physiological findings that bipolar/horizontal cells in the salamander retina are driven by rod/cone inputs of different weights, and that AMPA receptors play an important role in glutamatergic neurotransmission at the first visual synapses. The different photoreceptors selectively contacting bipolar and horizontal cells support the idea that visual signals may be conveyed to the inner retina by different functional pathways in the outer retina. PMID:18977238

  10. Reorganization of human cortical maps caused by inherited photoreceptor abnormalities.

    PubMed

    Baseler, Heidi A; Brewer, Alyssa A; Sharpe, Lindsay T; Morland, Antony B; Jägle, Herbert; Wandell, Brian A

    2002-04-01

    We describe a compelling demonstration of large-scale developmental reorganization in the human visual pathways. The developmental reorganization was observed in rod monochromats, a rare group of congenitally colorblind individuals who virtually lack cone photoreceptor function. Normal controls had a cortical region, spanning several square centimeters, that responded to signals initiated in the all-cone foveola but was inactive under rod viewing conditions; in rod monochromats this cortical region responded powerfully to rod-initiated signals. The measurements trace a causal pathway that begins with a genetic anomaly that directly influences sensory cells and ultimately results in a substantial central reorganization. PMID:11914722

  11. Gene expression changes during retinal development and rod specification

    PubMed Central

    Carrigan, Matthew; Hokamp, Karsten; Farrar, G. Jane

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) typically results from individual mutations in any one of >70 genes that cause rod photoreceptor cells to degenerate prematurely, eventually resulting in blindness. Gene therapies targeting individual RP genes have shown efficacy at clinical trial; however, these therapies require the surviving photoreceptor cells to be viable and functional, and may be economically feasible for only the more commonly mutated genes. An alternative potential treatment strategy, particularly for late stage disease, may involve stem cell transplants into the photoreceptor layer of the retina. Rod progenitors from postnatal mouse retinas can be transplanted and can form photoreceptors in recipient adult retinas; optimal numbers of transplantable cells are obtained from postnatal day 3–5 (P3–5) retinas. These cells can also be expanded in culture; however, this results in the loss of photoreceptor potential. Gene expression differences between postnatal retinas, cultured retinal progenitor cells (RPCs), and rod photoreceptor precursors were investigated to identify gene expression patterns involved in the specification of rod photoreceptors. Methods Microarrays were used to investigate differences in gene expression between cultured RPCs that have lost photoreceptor potential, P1 retinas, and fresh P5 retinas that contain significant numbers of transplantable photoreceptors. Additionally, fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) sorted Rho-eGFP-expressing rod photoreceptor precursors were compared with Rho-eGFP-negative cells from the same P5 retinas. Differential expression was confirmed with quantitative polymerase chain reaction (q-PCR). Results Analysis of the microarray data sets, including the use of t-distributed stochastic neighbor embedding (t-SNE) to identify expression pattern neighbors of key photoreceptor specific genes, resulted in the identification of 636 genes differentially regulated during rod specification. Forty-four of these

  12. Assessment of Biasi and Columbia University CHF correlations with GE 3x3 rod bundle experiment. [PWR; BWR

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, B.C.J.; Chien, T.H.; Sha, W.T.; Kim, J.H.

    1984-01-01

    The critical heat flux (CHF), at which a sudden degradation of heat transfer occurs without corresponding decrease in heat generation, is one of the limiting parameters for safe operation of nuclear reactors. Reactor operation beyond the CHF causes a rapid rise in fuel cladding temperature and thus should be avoided to maintain the fuel element integrity. Reactor power limits are therefore set so that a prescribed safety margin below the CHF is maintained. Two CHF correlations are evaluated for reactor core thermal hydraulic analysis: the Biasi correlation and the Columbia University correlation. The BODYFIT-2PE computer code is used for this assessment. The CHF predicted by the BODYFIT-2PE using the two correlations is compared with GE 3x3 rod bundle CHF experiment.

  13. Algal sensory photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Hegemann, Peter

    2008-01-01

    Only five major types of sensory photoreceptors (BLUF-proteins, cryptochromes, phototropins, phytochromes, and rhodopsins) are used in nature to regulate developmental processes, photosynthesis, photoorientation, and control of the circadian clock. Sensory photoreceptors of algae and protists are exceptionally rich in structure and function; light-gated ion channels and photoactivated adenylate cyclases are unique examples. During the past ten years major progress has been made with respect to understanding the function, photochemistry, and structure of key sensory players of the algal kingdom.

  14. Neurogenin1 effectively reprograms cultured chick RPE cells to differentiate towards photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Run-Tao; Liang, Lina; Ma, Wenxin; Li, Xiumei; Xie, Wenlian; Wang, Shu-Zhen

    2009-01-01

    Photoreceptors are highly specialized sensory neurons in the retina, and their degeneration results in blindness. Replacement with developing photoreceptor cells promises to be an effective therapy, but it requires a supply of new photoreceptors, because the neural retina in human eyes lacks regeneration capability. We report efficient generation of differentiating, photoreceptor-like neurons from chick retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells propagated in culture through reprogramming with neurogenin1 (ngn1). In reprogrammed culture, a large number of the cells (85.0 ± 5.9%) began to differentiate towards photoreceptors. Reprogrammed cells expressed transcription factors that set in motion photoreceptor differentiation, including Crx, Nr2E3, NeuroD, and RXRγ, and phototransduction pathway components, including transducin, cGMP-gated channel, and red opsin of cone photoreceptors (equivalent to rhodopsin of rod photoreceptors). They developed inner segments rich in mitochondria. Furthermore, they responded to light by decreasing their cellular free calcium (Ca2+) levels and responded to 9-cis-retinal by increasing their Ca2+ levels after photobleaching, hallmarks of photoreceptor physiology. The high efficiency and the advanced photoreceptor differentiation indicate ngn1 as a gene of choice to reprogram RPE progeny cells to differentiate into photoreceptor neurons in future cell replacement studies. PMID:20029995

  15. Tbx2b is required for ultraviolet photoreceptor cell specification during zebrafish retinal development

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez-Delfin, Karen; Morris, Ann C.; Snelson, Corey D.; Gamse, Joshua T.; Gupta, Tripti; Marlow, Florence L.; Mullins, Mary C.; Burgess, Harold A.; Granato, Michael; Fadool, James M.

    2009-01-01

    The vertebrate rod and cone photoreceptors are highly specialized sensory neurons that transduce light into the chemical and electrical signals of the nervous system. Although the physiological properties of cones and rods are well known, only a handful of genes have been identified that regulate the specification of photoreceptor subtypes. Taking advantage of the mosaic organization of photoreceptors in zebrafish, we report the isolation of a mutation resulting in a unique change in photoreceptor cell fate. Mutation of the lots-of-rods (lor) locus results in a near one-for-one transformation of UV-cone precursors into rods. The transformed cells exhibit morphological characteristics and a gene-expression pattern typical of rods, but differentiate in a temporal and spatial pattern consistent with UV-cone development. In mutant larvae and adults, the highly ordered photoreceptor mosaic is maintained and degeneration is not observed, suggesting that lor functions after the specification of the other photoreceptor subtypes. In genetic chimeras, lor functions cell-autonomously in the specification of photoreceptor cell fate. Linkage analysis and genetic-complementation testing indicate that lor is an allele of tbx2b/fby (from beyond). fby was identified by a pineal complex phenotype, and carries a nonsense mutation in the T-box domain of the tbx2b transcription factor. Homozygous fby mutant larvae and lor/fby transheterozygotes also display the lots-of-rods phenotype. Based upon these data, we propose a previously undescribed function for tbx2b in photoreceptor cell precursors, to promote the UV cone fate by repressing the rod differentiation pathway. PMID:19179291

  16. Photoreceptor fine structure in light- and dark-adaptation in the butterfly fish (Pantodon buchholzi).

    PubMed

    Braekevelt, C R

    1990-01-01

    The morphology of the retinal photoreceptors of the butterfly fish Pantodon buchholzi has been studied by electron microscopy in both light- and dark-adaptation. The photoreceptors in this species are readily divisible into rods and cones based on morphological criteria. No double or twin cones are present. The rod photoreceptors show marked retinomotor movements. In light-adaptation they are extremely elongate cells while in the dark-adapted state they are much shorter. Cones seem to respond but minimally to the circadian cycle. Rod outer segments are composed of membranous discs of uniform diameter displaying several incisures. The inner segment has a small distal ellipsoid and a thin myoid region which is lost in dark-adaptation. The nuclei of rods are condensed and always located vitread to the external limiting membrane. The rod synaptic spherule displays 2 or 3 invaginated sites. The single cones display a tapering outer segment. The wider inner segment contains a large electron-dense ellipsoid with small glycogen deposits located peripherally. The cone nuclei are large and vesicular and usually located sclerad to the external limiting membrane. The synaptic pedicle of cones is larger and more electron-lucent and contains more synaptic sites than do the rods. No mosaic pattern of arrangement of the photoreceptors is apparent. Except for the obvious lengthening or shortening of the rods, the morphology of the photoreceptors changes but little during the circadian cycle.

  17. Rod Electroretinograms Elicited by Silent Substitution Stimuli from the Light-Adapted Human Eye

    PubMed Central

    Maguire, John; Parry, Neil R. A.; Kremers, Jan; Kommanapalli, Deepika; Murray, Ian J.; McKeefry, Declan J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To demonstrate that silent substitution stimuli can be used to generate electroretinograms (ERGs) that effectively isolate rod photoreceptor function in humans without the need for dark adaptation, and that this approach constitutes a viable alternative to current clinical standard testing protocols. Methods Rod-isolating and non-isolating sinusoidal flicker stimuli were generated on a 4 primary light-emitting diode (LED) Ganzfeld stimulator to elicit ERGs from participants with normal and compromised rod function who had not undergone dark-adaptation. Responses were subjected to Fourier analysis, and the amplitude and phase of the fundamental were used to examine temporal frequency and retinal illuminance response characteristics. Results Electroretinograms elicited by rod-isolating silent substitution stimuli exhibit low-pass temporal frequency response characteristics with an upper response limit of 30 Hz. Responses are optimal between 5 and 8 Hz and between 10 and 100 photopic trolands (Td). There is a significant correlation between the response amplitudes obtained with the silent substitution method and current standard clinical protocols. Analysis of signal-to-noise ratios reveals significant differences between subjects with normal and compromised rod function. Conclusions Silent substitution provides an effective method for the isolation of human rod photoreceptor function in subjects with normal as well as compromised rod function when stimuli are used within appropriate parameter ranges. Translational Relevance This method of generating rod-mediated ERGs can be achieved without time-consuming periods of dark adaptation, provides improved isolation of rod- from cone-based activity, and will lead to the development of faster clinical electrophysiologic testing protocols with improved selectivity.

  18. Rod Electroretinograms Elicited by Silent Substitution Stimuli from the Light-Adapted Human Eye

    PubMed Central

    Maguire, John; Parry, Neil R. A.; Kremers, Jan; Kommanapalli, Deepika; Murray, Ian J.; McKeefry, Declan J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To demonstrate that silent substitution stimuli can be used to generate electroretinograms (ERGs) that effectively isolate rod photoreceptor function in humans without the need for dark adaptation, and that this approach constitutes a viable alternative to current clinical standard testing protocols. Methods Rod-isolating and non-isolating sinusoidal flicker stimuli were generated on a 4 primary light-emitting diode (LED) Ganzfeld stimulator to elicit ERGs from participants with normal and compromised rod function who had not undergone dark-adaptation. Responses were subjected to Fourier analysis, and the amplitude and phase of the fundamental were used to examine temporal frequency and retinal illuminance response characteristics. Results Electroretinograms elicited by rod-isolating silent substitution stimuli exhibit low-pass temporal frequency response characteristics with an upper response limit of 30 Hz. Responses are optimal between 5 and 8 Hz and between 10 and 100 photopic trolands (Td). There is a significant correlation between the response amplitudes obtained with the silent substitution method and current standard clinical protocols. Analysis of signal-to-noise ratios reveals significant differences between subjects with normal and compromised rod function. Conclusions Silent substitution provides an effective method for the isolation of human rod photoreceptor function in subjects with normal as well as compromised rod function when stimuli are used within appropriate parameter ranges. Translational Relevance This method of generating rod-mediated ERGs can be achieved without time-consuming periods of dark adaptation, provides improved isolation of rod- from cone-based activity, and will lead to the development of faster clinical electrophysiologic testing protocols with improved selectivity. PMID:27617180

  19. Kinesin family 17 (osmotic avoidance abnormal-3) is dispensable for photoreceptor morphology and function.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Li; Tam, Beatrice M; Ying, Guoxing; Wu, Sen; Hauswirth, William W; Frederick, Jeanne M; Moritz, Orson L; Baehr, Wolfgang

    2015-12-01

    In Caenorhabditis elegans, homodimeric [kinesin family (KIF) 17, osmotic avoidance abnormal-3 (OSM-3)] and heterotrimeric (KIF3) kinesin-2 motors are required to establish sensory cilia by intraflagellar transport (IFT) where KIF3 and KIF17 cooperate to build the axoneme core and KIF17 builds the distal segments. However, the function of KIF17 in vertebrates is unresolved. We expressed full-length and motorless KIF17 constructs in mouse rod photoreceptors using adeno-associated virus in Xenopus laevis rod photoreceptors using a transgene and in ciliated IMCD3 cells. We found that tagged KIF17 localized along the rod outer segment axoneme when expressed in mouse and X. laevis photoreceptors, whereas KIF3A was restricted to the proximal axoneme. Motorless KIF3A and KIF17 mutants caused photoreceptor degeneration, likely through dominant negative effects on IFT. KIF17 mutant lacking the motor domain translocated to nuclei after exposure of a C-terminal nuclear localization signal. Germ-line deletion of Kif17 in mouse did not affect photoreceptor function. A rod-specific Kif3/Kif17 double knockout mouse demonstrated that KIF17 and KIF3 do not act synergistically and did not prevent rhodopsin trafficking to rod outer segments. In summary, the nematode model of KIF3/KIF17 cooperation apparently does not apply to mouse photoreceptors in which the photosensory cilium is built exclusively by KIF3. PMID:26229057

  20. 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. ...

  1. The Fine Structure of Some Retinal Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Moody, M. F.; Robertson, J. D.

    1960-01-01

    An electron microscope study has been made of octopus and amphibian photoreceptors, after fixing with KMnO4 and embedding in araldite. What has previously been seen as a single dense stratum bounding the tubular compartments (octopus) or the double membrane discs (rods and cones), now shows a double structure. We interpret this as showing that these tubules and discs have similar bounding surfaces, which are probably directly related to the cell membrane. This is confirmed by the finding that the tubules and discs are (at least occasionally) continuous with the cell membrane. PMID:14423794

  2. ROLES OF CELL-INTRINSIC AND MICROENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS IN PHOTORECEPTOR CELL DIFFERENTIATION

    PubMed Central

    Bradford, Rebecca L.; Wang, Chenwei; Zack, Donald J.; Adler, Ruben

    2005-01-01

    Photoreceptor differentiation requires the coordinated expression of numerous genes. It is unknown whether those genes share common regulatory mechanisms or are independently regulated by distinct mechanisms. To distinguish between these scenarios, we have used in situ hybridization, RT-PCR and real time PCR to analyze the expression of visual pigments and other photoreceptor-specific genes during chick embryo retinal development in ovo, as well as in retinal cell cultures treated with molecules that regulate the expression of particular visual pigments. In ovo, onset of gene expression was asynchronous, becoming detectable at the time of photoreceptor generation (ED 5–8) for some photoreceptor genes, but only around the time of outer segment formation (ED 14–16) for others. Treatment of retinal cell cultures with activin, staurosporine or CNTF selectively induced or down-regulated specific visual pigment genes, but many cognate rod- or cone-specific genes were not affected by the treatments. These results indicate that many photoreceptor genes are independently regulated during development, are consistent with the existence of at least two distinct stages of gene expression during photoreceptor differentiation, suggest that intrinsic, coordinated regulation of a cascade of gene expression triggered by a commitment to the photoreceptor fate is not a general mechanism of photoreceptor differentiation, and imply that using a single photoreceptor-specific “marker” as a proxy to identify photoreceptor cell fate is problematic. PMID:16120439

  3. Retinal photoreceptor fine structure in the red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinereus).

    PubMed

    Braekevelt, C R

    1992-07-01

    The retinal photoreceptors of the red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinerus) have been studied by light and electron microscopy. Rods and single cones are present in this duplex retina in a ratio of about 25:1. The photoreceptors in this amphibian species are much larger than is reported for most vertebrates. In the light-adapted state, rods reach deep into the retinal epithelial (RPE) layer. The rod outer segment is composed of discs of uniform diameter displaying several very deep incisors. The rod inner segment displays a distal elliposid of mitochondria and a short stout myoid region. Rod nuclei are electron dense and often protrude through the external limiting membrane. Rod synaptic spherules are large and display several invaginated synaptic sites as well as superficial synapses. It is felt that the rods do not undergo retinomotor movements. The cone photoreceptors are much smaller than the rods and display a tapering outer segment, an unusual modified ellipsoid and a large parabolid of glycogen in the inner segment. Cone nuclei are less electron dense than rods and are located at all levels within the outer nuclear layer. The synaptic pedicle of the cones is larger, more electron lucent and display more synaptic sites (both invaginated and superficial) than that of rods. It is felt that cone photomechanical responses are minimal.

  4. Photoreceptor and Postreceptor Responses in Congenital Stationary Night Blindness

    PubMed Central

    Raghuram, Aparna; Hansen, Ronald M.; Moskowitz, Anne; Fulton, Anne B.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose. To investigate photoreceptor and postreceptor retinal function in patients with congenital stationary night blindness (CSNB). Methods. Forty-one patients with CSNB (ages 0.19–32 years) were studied. ERG responses to a series of full-field stimuli were obtained under scotopic and photopic conditions and were used to categorize the CSNB patients as complete (cCSNB) or incomplete (iCSNB). Rod and cone photoreceptor (RROD, SROD, RCONE, SCONE) and rod-driven postreceptor (VMAX, log σ) response parameters were calculated from the a- and b-waves. Cone-driven responses to 30 Hz flicker and ON and OFF responses to a long duration (150 ms) flash were also obtained. Dark-adapted thresholds were measured. Analysis of variance was used to compare data from patients with cCSNB, patients with iCSNB, and controls. Results. We found significant reduction in saturated photoreceptor amplitude (RROD, RCONE) but normal photoreceptor sensitivity (SROD, SCONE) in both CSNB groups. Rod-driven postreceptor response amplitude (VMAX) and sensitivity (log σ) were significantly reduced in CSNB. Log σ was significantly worse in cCSNB than in iCSNB; this was the only scotopic parameter that differed between the two CSNB groups. Photopic b-wave amplitude increased monotonically with stimulus strength in CSNB patients rather than showing a normal photopic hill. The amplitude of the 30-Hz flicker response was reduced compared with controls, more so in iCSNB than in cCSNB. The mean dark-adapted threshold was significantly elevated in CSNB, more so in cCSNB than in iCSNB. Conclusions. These results are evidence of normal photoreceptor function (despite the low saturated photoresponse amplitude) and anomalous postreceptor retinal circuitry. PMID:23761088

  5. AAV-mediated photoreceptor transduction of the pig cone-enriched retina

    PubMed Central

    Mussolino, C; della Corte, M; Rossi, S; Viola, F; Di Vicino, U; Marrocco, E; Neglia, S; Doria, M; Testa, F; Giovannoni, R; Crasta, M; Giunti, M; Villani, E; Lavitrano, M; Bacci, M L; Ratiglia, R; Simonelli, F; Auricchio, A; Surace, E M

    2011-01-01

    Recent success in clinical trials supports the use of adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors for gene therapy of retinal diseases caused by defects in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). In contrast, evidence of the efficacy of AAV-mediated gene transfer to retinal photoreceptors, the major site of inherited retinal diseases, is less robust. In addition, although AAV-mediated RPE transduction appears efficient, independently of the serotype used and species treated, AAV-mediated photoreceptor gene transfer has not been systematically investigated thus so far in large animal models, which also may allow identifying relevant species-specific differences in AAV-mediated retinal transduction. In the present study, we used the porcine retina, which has a high cone/rod ratio. This feature allows to properly evaluate both cone and rod photoreceptors transduction and compare the transduction characteristics of AAV2/5 and 2/8, the two most efficient AAV vector serotypes for photoreceptor targeting. Here we show that AAV2/5 and 2/8 transduces both RPE and photoreceptors. AAV2/8 infects and transduces photoreceptor more efficiently than AAV2/5, similarly to what we have observed in the murine retina. The use of the photoreceptor-specific rhodopsin promoter restricts transgene expression to porcine rods and cones, and results in photoreceptor transduction levels similar to those obtained with the ubiquitous promoters tested. Finally, immunological, toxicological and biodistribution studies support the safety of AAV subretinal administration to the large porcine retina. The data presented here on AAV-mediated transduction of the cone-enriched porcine retina may affect the development of gene-based therapies for rare and common severe photoreceptor diseases. PMID:21412286

  6. Light-evoked responses of the retinal pigment epithelium: changes accompanying photoreceptor loss in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Samuels, Ivy S; Sturgill, Gwen M; Grossman, Gregory H; Rayborn, Mary E; Hollyfield, Joe G; Peachey, Neal S

    2010-07-01

    Mutations in genes expressed in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) underlie a number of human inherited retinal disorders that manifest with photoreceptor degeneration. Because light-evoked responses of the RPE are generated secondary to rod photoreceptor activity, RPE response reductions observed in human patients or animal models may simply reflect decreased photoreceptor input. The purpose of this study was to define how the electrophysiological characteristics of the RPE change when the complement of rod photoreceptors is decreased. To measure RPE function, we used an electroretinogram (dc-ERG)-based technique. We studied a slowly progressive mouse model of photoreceptor degeneration (Prph(Rd2/+)), which was crossed onto a Nyx(nob) background to eliminate the b-wave and most other postreceptoral ERG components. On this background, Prph(Rd2/+) mice display characteristic reductions in a-wave amplitude, which parallel those in slow PIII amplitude and the loss of rod photoreceptors. At 2 and 4 mo of age, the amplitude of each dc-ERG component (c-wave, fast oscillation, light peak, and off response) was larger in Prph(Rd2/+) mice than predicted by rod photoreceptor activity (Rm(P3)) or anatomical analysis. At 4 mo of age, the RPE in Prph(Rd2/+) mice showed several structural abnormalities including vacuoles and swollen, hypertrophic cells. These data demonstrate that insights into RPE function can be gained despite a loss of photoreceptors and structural changes in RPE cells and, moreover, that RPE function can be evaluated in a broader range of mouse models of human retinal disease.

  7. Rod guide

    SciTech Connect

    Sable, D.E.

    1988-11-29

    This patent describes a rod guide assembly for a sucker rod longitudinally reciprocably movable in a well flow conductor comprising: a pair of longitudinally spaced upper and lower stops rigidly secured to a sucker rod; and a guide body movably mounted on the rod between the stops. The stops being spaced from each other a distance slightly greater than the length of the guide body, the upper stop engaging the guide body to move the guide body downwardly with the rod after an initial short downward movement of the rod after initiation of each downward movement of the rod and the lower stop engaging the guide body to move the second guide body upwardly with the rod after initial short upward movement of the rod after initiation of each upward movement of the rod during the longitudinal reciprocatory movement of the rod in a well flow conductor.

  8. Depth-resolved rhodopsin molecular contrast imaging for functional assessment of photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Tan; Wen, Rong; Lam, Byron L.; Puliafito, Carmen A.; Jiao, Shuliang

    2015-01-01

    Rhodopsin, the light-sensing molecule in the outer segments of rod photoreceptors, is responsible for converting light into neuronal signals in a process known as phototransduction. Rhodopsin is thus a functional biomarker for rod photoreceptors. Here we report a novel technology based on visible-light optical coherence tomography (VIS-OCT) for in vivo molecular imaging of rhodopsin. The depth resolution of OCT allows the visualization of the location where the change of optical absorption occurs and provides a potentially accurate assessment of rhodopsin content by segmentation of the image at the location. Rhodopsin OCT can be used to quantitatively image rhodopsin distribution and thus assess the distribution of functional rod photoreceptors in the retina. Rhodopsin OCT can bring significant impact into ophthalmic clinics by providing a tool for the diagnosis and severity assessment of a variety of retinal conditions. PMID:26358529

  9. Nonvisual photoreceptors of the deep brain, pineal organs and retina.

    PubMed

    Vigh, B; Manzano, M J; Zádori, A; Frank, C L; Lukáts, A; Röhlich, P; Szél, A; Dávid, C

    2002-04-01

    , pineal organs also contain neurons and glial elements. Extracranial pineal organs of submammalians are cone-dominated photoreceptors sensitive to different wavelengths of light, while intracranial pineal organs predominantly contain rod-like photoreceptor cells and thus scotopic light receptors. Vitamin B-based light-sensitive cryptochromes localized immunocytochemically in some pineal cells may take part in both the photoreception and the pacemaker function of the pineal organ. In spite of expressing phototransduction cascade molecules and forming outer segment-like cilia in some species, the mammalian pineal is considered by most of the authors as a light-insensitive organ. Expression of phototransduction cascade molecules, predominantly in young animals, is a photoreceptor-like characteristic of pinealocytes in higher vertebrates that may contribute to a light-percepting task in the perinatal entrainment of rhythmic functions. In adult mammals, adrenergic nerves--mediating daily fluctuation of sympathetic activity rather than retinal light information as generally supposed--may sustain circadian periodicity already entrained by light perinatally. Altogether three phases were supposed to exist in pineal entrainment of internal pacemakers: an embryological synchronization by light and in viviparous vertebrates by maternal effects (1); a light-based, postnatal entrainment (2); and in adults, a maintenance of periodicity by daily sympathetic rhythm of the hypothalamus. In addition to its visual function, the lateral eye retina performs a nonvisual task. Nonvisual retinal light perception primarily entrains genetically-determined periodicity, such as rod-cone dominance, EEG rhythms or retinomotor movements. It also influences the suprachiasmatic nucleus, the primary pacemaker of the brain. As neither rods nor cones seem to represent the nonvisual retinal photoreceptors, the presence of additional photoreceptors has been supposed. Cryptochrome 1, a photosensitive molecule

  10. Electron Microscopy of Retinal Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Lasansky, Arnaldo; de Robertis, Eduardo

    1960-01-01

    The fine structure of the cone and rod outer segments of the toad was studied under the electron microscope after fixation in osmium tetroxide and fixation in formaldehyde followed by chromation. In the OsO4-fixed specimens, the rod outer segment appears to be built of a stack of lobulated flattened sacs, each of which is made of two membranes of about 40 A separated by an innerspace of about 30 A. The distance between the rod sacs is about 50 A. The sacs in the cone outer segment are originated by the folding of a continuous membrane. The thickness of the membranes and width of the spaces between the cone sacs is the same as in rod, but the sac innerspace is slightly narrower in the cone (∼ 20 A). After fixation in formaldehyde and chromation, two different dense lines (l1 and l2) separated by spaces of less density appear. One of the lines, l1, has a thickness of 70 A and is less dense than the other, l2, which is 30 A thick. The correlation of the patterns obtained with both fixatives is considered and two possible interpretations are given. The possibility that l2 is related to a soluble phospholipid component is discussed. It is suggested that the outer segments have a paracrystallin organization similar to that found in myelin. PMID:14414323

  11. Quantitative Analysis of Synaptic Release at the Photoreceptor Synapse

    PubMed Central

    Duncan, Gabriel; Rabl, Katalin; Gemp, Ian; Heidelberger, Ruth; Thoreson, Wallace B.

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Exocytosis from the rod photoreceptor is stimulated by submicromolar Ca2+ and exhibits an unusually shallow dependence on presynaptic Ca2+. To provide a quantitative description of the photoreceptor Ca2+ sensor for exocytosis, we tested a family of conventional and allosteric computational models describing the final Ca2+-binding steps leading to exocytosis. Simulations were fit to two measures of release, evoked by flash-photolysis of caged Ca2+: exocytotic capacitance changes from individual rods and postsynaptic currents of second-order neurons. The best simulations supported the occupancy of only two Ca2+ binding sites on the rod Ca2+ sensor rather than the typical four or five. For most models, the on-rates for Ca2+ binding and maximal fusion rate were comparable to those of other neurons. However, the off-rates for Ca2+ unbinding were unexpectedly slow. In addition to contributing to the high-affinity of the photoreceptor Ca2+ sensor, slow Ca2+ unbinding may support the fusion of vesicles located at a distance from Ca2+ channels. In addition, partial sensor occupancy due to slow unbinding may contribute to the linearization of the first synapse in vision. PMID:20483317

  12. Reversal of end-stage retinal degeneration and restoration of visual function by photoreceptor transplantation.

    PubMed

    Singh, Mandeep S; Charbel Issa, Peter; Butler, Rachel; Martin, Chris; Lipinski, Daniel M; Sekaran, Sumathi; Barnard, Alun R; MacLaren, Robert E

    2013-01-15

    One strategy to restore vision in retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration is cell replacement. Typically, patients lose vision when the outer retinal photoreceptor layer is lost, and so the therapeutic goal would be to restore vision at this stage of disease. It is not currently known if a degenerate retina lacking the outer nuclear layer of photoreceptor cells would allow the survival, maturation, and reconnection of replacement photoreceptors, as prior studies used hosts with a preexisting outer nuclear layer at the time of treatment. Here, using a murine model of severe human retinitis pigmentosa at a stage when no host rod cells remain, we show that transplanted rod precursors can reform an anatomically distinct and appropriately polarized outer nuclear layer. A trilaminar organization was returned to rd1 hosts that had only two retinal layers before treatment. The newly introduced precursors were able to resume their developmental program in the degenerate host niche to become mature rods with light-sensitive outer segments, reconnecting with host neurons downstream. Visual function, assayed in the same animals before and after transplantation, was restored in animals with zero rod function at baseline. These observations suggest that a cell therapy approach may reconstitute a light-sensitive cell layer de novo and hence repair a structurally damaged visual circuit. Rather than placing discrete photoreceptors among preexisting host outer retinal cells, total photoreceptor layer reconstruction may provide a clinically relevant model to investigate cell-based strategies for retinal repair. PMID:23288902

  13. Reversal of end-stage retinal degeneration and restoration of visual function by photoreceptor transplantation.

    PubMed

    Singh, Mandeep S; Charbel Issa, Peter; Butler, Rachel; Martin, Chris; Lipinski, Daniel M; Sekaran, Sumathi; Barnard, Alun R; MacLaren, Robert E

    2013-01-15

    One strategy to restore vision in retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration is cell replacement. Typically, patients lose vision when the outer retinal photoreceptor layer is lost, and so the therapeutic goal would be to restore vision at this stage of disease. It is not currently known if a degenerate retina lacking the outer nuclear layer of photoreceptor cells would allow the survival, maturation, and reconnection of replacement photoreceptors, as prior studies used hosts with a preexisting outer nuclear layer at the time of treatment. Here, using a murine model of severe human retinitis pigmentosa at a stage when no host rod cells remain, we show that transplanted rod precursors can reform an anatomically distinct and appropriately polarized outer nuclear layer. A trilaminar organization was returned to rd1 hosts that had only two retinal layers before treatment. The newly introduced precursors were able to resume their developmental program in the degenerate host niche to become mature rods with light-sensitive outer segments, reconnecting with host neurons downstream. Visual function, assayed in the same animals before and after transplantation, was restored in animals with zero rod function at baseline. These observations suggest that a cell therapy approach may reconstitute a light-sensitive cell layer de novo and hence repair a structurally damaged visual circuit. Rather than placing discrete photoreceptors among preexisting host outer retinal cells, total photoreceptor layer reconstruction may provide a clinically relevant model to investigate cell-based strategies for retinal repair.

  14. Ciliary photoreceptors in the cerebral eyes of a protostome larva

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Eyes in bilaterian metazoans have been described as being composed of either ciliary or rhabdomeric photoreceptors. Phylogenetic distribution, as well as distinct morphologies and characteristic deployment of different photopigments (ciliary vs. rhabdomeric opsins) and transduction pathways argue for the co-existence of both of these two photoreceptor types in the last common bilaterian ancestor. Both receptor types exist throughout the Bilateria, but only vertebrates are thought to use ciliary photoreceptors for directional light detection in cerebral eyes, while all other invertebrate bilaterians studied utilize rhabdomeric photoreceptors for this purpose. In protostomes, ciliary photoreceptors that express c-opsin have been described only from a non-visual deep-brain photoreceptor. Their homology with vertebrate rods and cones of the human eye has been hypothesized to represent a unique functional transition from non-visual to visual roles in the vertebrate lineage. Results To test the hypothesis that protostome cerebral eyes employ exclusively rhabdomeric photoreceptors, we investigated the ultrastructure of the larval eyes in the brachiopod Terebratalia transversa. We show that these pigment-cup eyes consist of a lens cell and a shading pigment cell, both of which are putative photoreceptors, deploying a modified, enlarged cilium for light perception, and have axonal connections to the larval brain. Our investigation of the gene expression patterns of c-opsin, Pax6 and otx in these eyes confirms that the larval eye spots of brachiopods are cerebral eyes that deploy ciliary type photoreceptors for directional light detection. Interestingly, c-opsin is also expressed during early embryogenesis in all potential apical neural cells, becoming restricted to the anterior neuroectoderm, before expression is initiated in the photoreceptor cells of the eyes. Coincident with the expression of c-opsin in the presumptive neuroectoderm, we found that middle

  15. Immuno-histochemical analysis of rod and cone reaction to RPE65 deficiency in the inferior and superior canine retina.

    PubMed

    Klein, Daniela; Mendes-Madeira, Alexandra; Schlegel, Patrice; Rolling, Fabienne; Lorenz, Birgit; Haverkamp, Silke; Stieger, Knut

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in the RPE65 gene are associated with autosomal recessive early onset severe retinal dystrophy. Morphological and functional studies indicate early and dramatic loss of rod photoreceptors and early loss of S-cone function, while L and M cones remain initially functional. The Swedish Briard dog is a naturally occurring animal model for this disease. Detailed information about rod and cone reaction to RPE65 deficiency in this model with regard to their location within the retina remains limited. The aim of this study was to analyze morphological parameters of cone and rod viability in young adult RPE65 deficient dogs in different parts of the retina in order to shed light on local disparities in this disease. In retinae of affected dogs, sprouting of rod bipolar cell dendrites and horizontal cell processes was dramatically increased in the inferior peripheral part of affected retinae, while central inferior and both superior parts did not display significantly increased sprouting. This observation was correlated with photoreceptor cell layer thickness. Interestingly, while L/M cone opsin expression was uniformly reduced both in the superior and inferior part of the retina, S-cone opsin expression loss was less severe in the inferior part of the retina. In summary, in retinae of young adult RPE65 deficient dogs, the degree of rod bipolar and horizontal cell sprouting as well as of S-cone opsin expression depends on the location. As the human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) is pigmented similar to the RPE in the inferior part of the canine retina, and the kinetics of photoreceptor degeneration in humans seems to be similar to what has been observed in the inferior peripheral retina in dogs, this area should be studied in future gene therapy experiments in this model.

  16. Immuno-Histochemical Analysis of Rod and Cone Reaction to RPE65 Deficiency in the Inferior and Superior Canine Retina

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Daniela; Mendes-Madeira, Alexandra; Schlegel, Patrice; Rolling, Fabienne; Lorenz, Birgit; Haverkamp, Silke; Stieger, Knut

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in the RPE65 gene are associated with autosomal recessive early onset severe retinal dystrophy. Morphological and functional studies indicate early and dramatic loss of rod photoreceptors and early loss of S-cone function, while L and M cones remain initially functional. The Swedish Briard dog is a naturally occurring animal model for this disease. Detailed information about rod and cone reaction to RPE65 deficiency in this model with regard to their location within the retina remains limited. The aim of this study was to analyze morphological parameters of cone and rod viability in young adult RPE65 deficient dogs in different parts of the retina in order to shed light on local disparities in this disease. In retinae of affected dogs, sprouting of rod bipolar cell dendrites and horizontal cell processes was dramatically increased in the inferior peripheral part of affected retinae, while central inferior and both superior parts did not display significantly increased sprouting. This observation was correlated with photoreceptor cell layer thickness. Interestingly, while L/M cone opsin expression was uniformly reduced both in the superior and inferior part of the retina, S-cone opsin expression loss was less severe in the inferior part of the retina. In summary, in retinae of young adult RPE65 deficient dogs, the degree of rod bipolar and horizontal cell sprouting as well as of S-cone opsin expression depends on the location. As the human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) is pigmented similar to the RPE in the inferior part of the canine retina, and the kinetics of photoreceptor degeneration in humans seems to be similar to what has been observed in the inferior peripheral retina in dogs, this area should be studied in future gene therapy experiments in this model. PMID:24466015

  17. Heterogeneous distribution of AMPA glutamate receptor subunits at the photoreceptor synapses of rodent retina.

    PubMed

    Hack, I; Frech, M; Dick, O; Peichl, L; Brandstätter, J H

    2001-01-01

    In the retina the segregation of different aspects of visual information starts at the first synapse in signal transfer from the photoreceptors to the second-order neurons, via the neurotransmitter glutamate. We examined the distribution of the four AMPA glutamate receptor subunits GluR1-GluR4 at the photoreceptor synapses in mouse and rat retinae by light and immunoelectron microscopy and serial section reconstructions. On the dendrites of OFF-cone bipolar cells, which make flat, noninvaginating contacts postsynaptic at cone synaptic terminals, the subunits GluR1 and GluR2 were predominantly found. Horizontal cell processes postsynaptic at both rod and cone synaptic terminals preferentially expressed the subunits GluR2, GluR2/3 and GluR4. An intriguing finding was the presence of GluR2/3 and GluR4 subunits on dendrites of putative rod bipolar cells, which are thought to signal through the sign-inverting metabotropic glutamate receptor 6, mGluR6. Furthermore, at the rod terminals, horizontal cell processes and rod bipolar cell dendrites showed labelling for the AMPA receptor subunits at the ribbon synaptic site or perisynaptically at their site of invagination into the rod terminal. The wide distribution of AMPA receptor subunits at the photoreceptor synapses suggests that AMPA receptors play an important role in visual signal transfer from the photoreceptors to their postsynaptic partners.

  18. Classical Photoreceptors Are Primarily Responsible for the Pupillary Light Reflex in Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Varsha; Srivastava, Ipsit; Palchaudhuri, Shriya; Goel, Manvi; Sinha-Mahapatra, Sumit K.; Dhingra, Narender K.

    2016-01-01

    Pupillary light reflex (PLR) is an important clinical tool to assess the integrity of visual pathways. The available evidence suggests that melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells (mRGCs) mediate PLR—driven by the classical photoreceptors (rods and cones) at low irradiances and by melanopsin activation at high irradiances. However, genetic or pharmacological elimination of melanopsin does not completely abolish PLR at high irradiances, raising the possibility that classical photoreceptors may have a role even at high irradiances. Using an inducible mouse model of photoreceptor degeneration, we asked whether classical photoreceptors are responsible for PLR at all irradiances, and found that the PLR was severely attenuated at all irradiances. Using multiple approaches, we show that the residual PLR at high irradiances in this mouse was primarily from the remnant rods and cones, with a minor contribution from melanopsin activation. In contrast, in rd1 mouse where classical photoreceptor degeneration occurs during development, the PLR was absent at low irradiances but intact at high irradiances, as reported previously. Since mRGCs receive inputs from classical photoreceptors, we also asked whether developmental loss of classical photoreceptors as in rd1 mouse leads to compensatory takeover of the high-irradiance PLR by mRGCs. Specifically, we looked at a distinct subpopulation of mRGCs that express Brn3b transcription factor, which has been shown to mediate PLR. We found that rd1 mouse had a significantly higher proportion of Brn3b-expressing M1 type of mRGCs than in the inducible model. Interestingly, inducing classical photoreceptor degeneration during development also resulted in a higher proportion of Brn3b-expressing M1 cells and partially rescued PLR at high irradiances. These results suggest that classical photoreceptors are primarily responsible for PLR at all irradiances, while melanopsin activation makes a minor contribution at very high irradiances

  19. The rod circuit in the rabbit retina.

    PubMed

    Vaney, D I; Young, H M; Gynther, I C

    1991-01-01

    Mammalian retinae have a well-defined neuronal pathway that serves rod vision. In rabbit retina, the different populations of interneurons in the rod pathway can be selectively labeled, either separately or in combination. The rod bipolar cells show protein kinase C immunoreactivity; the rod (AII) amacrine cells can be distinguished in nuclear-yellow labeled retina; the rod reciprocal (S1 & S2) amacrine cells accumulate serotonin; and the dopaminergic amacrine cells show tyrosine-hydroxylase immunoreactivity. Furthermore, intracellular dye injection of the microscopically identified interneurons enables whole-population and single-cell studies to be combined in the same tissue. Using this approach, we have been able to analyze systematically the neuronal architecture of the rod circuit across the rabbit retina and compare its organization with that of the rod circuit in central cat retina. In rabbit retina, the rod interneurons are not organized in a uniform neuronal module that is simply scaled up from central to peripheral retina. Moreover, peripheral fields in superior and inferior retina that have equivalent densities of each neuronal type show markedly different rod bipolar to AII amacrine convergence ratios, with the result that many more rod photoreceptors converge on an AII amacrine cell in superior retina. In rabbit retina, much of the convergence in the rod circuit occurs in the outer retina whereas, in central cat retina, it is more evenly distributed between the inner and outer retina.

  20. Retinal photoreceptors and visual pigments in Boa constrictor imperator.

    PubMed

    Sillman, A J; Johnson, J L; Loew, E R

    2001-09-01

    The photoreceptors of Boa constrictor, a boid snake of the subfamily Boinae, were examined with scanning electron microscopy and microspectrophotometry. The retina of B. constrictor is duplex but highly dominated by rods, cones comprising 11% of the photoreceptor population. The rather tightly packed rods have relatively long outer segments with proximal ends that are somewhat tapered. There are two morphologically distinct, single cones. The most common cone by far has a large inner segment and a relatively stout outer segment. The second cone, seen only infrequently, has a substantially smaller inner segment and a finer outer segment. The visual pigments of B. constrictor are virtually identical to those of the pythonine boid, Python regius. Three different visual pigments are present, all based on vitamin A(1.) The visual pigment of the rods has a wavelength of peak absorbance (lambda(max)) at 495 +/- 2 nm. The visual pigment of the more common, large cone has a lambda(max) at 549 +/- 1 nm. The small, rare cone contains a visual pigment with lambda(max) at 357 +/- 2 nm, providing the snake with sensitivity in the ultraviolet. We suggest that B. constrictor might employ UV sensitivity to locate conspecifics and/or to improve hunting efficiency. The data indicate that wavelength discrimination above 430 nm would not be possible without some input from the rods.

  1. Retinal photoreceptors and visual pigments in Boa constrictor imperator.

    PubMed

    Sillman, A J; Johnson, J L; Loew, E R

    2001-09-01

    The photoreceptors of Boa constrictor, a boid snake of the subfamily Boinae, were examined with scanning electron microscopy and microspectrophotometry. The retina of B. constrictor is duplex but highly dominated by rods, cones comprising 11% of the photoreceptor population. The rather tightly packed rods have relatively long outer segments with proximal ends that are somewhat tapered. There are two morphologically distinct, single cones. The most common cone by far has a large inner segment and a relatively stout outer segment. The second cone, seen only infrequently, has a substantially smaller inner segment and a finer outer segment. The visual pigments of B. constrictor are virtually identical to those of the pythonine boid, Python regius. Three different visual pigments are present, all based on vitamin A(1.) The visual pigment of the rods has a wavelength of peak absorbance (lambda(max)) at 495 +/- 2 nm. The visual pigment of the more common, large cone has a lambda(max) at 549 +/- 1 nm. The small, rare cone contains a visual pigment with lambda(max) at 357 +/- 2 nm, providing the snake with sensitivity in the ultraviolet. We suggest that B. constrictor might employ UV sensitivity to locate conspecifics and/or to improve hunting efficiency. The data indicate that wavelength discrimination above 430 nm would not be possible without some input from the rods. PMID:11550183

  2. Fly Photoreceptors Encode Phase Congruency

    PubMed Central

    Friederich, Uwe; Billings, Stephen A.; Hardie, Roger C.; Juusola, Mikko; Coca, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    More than five decades ago it was postulated that sensory neurons detect and selectively enhance behaviourally relevant features of natural signals. Although we now know that sensory neurons are tuned to efficiently encode natural stimuli, until now it was not clear what statistical features of the stimuli they encode and how. Here we reverse-engineer the neural code of Drosophila photoreceptors and show for the first time that photoreceptors exploit nonlinear dynamics to selectively enhance and encode phase-related features of temporal stimuli, such as local phase congruency, which are invariant to changes in illumination and contrast. We demonstrate that to mitigate for the inherent sensitivity to noise of the local phase congruency measure, the nonlinear coding mechanisms of the fly photoreceptors are tuned to suppress random phase signals, which explains why photoreceptor responses to naturalistic stimuli are significantly different from their responses to white noise stimuli. PMID:27336733

  3. Fly Photoreceptors Encode Phase Congruency.

    PubMed

    Friederich, Uwe; Billings, Stephen A; Hardie, Roger C; Juusola, Mikko; Coca, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    More than five decades ago it was postulated that sensory neurons detect and selectively enhance behaviourally relevant features of natural signals. Although we now know that sensory neurons are tuned to efficiently encode natural stimuli, until now it was not clear what statistical features of the stimuli they encode and how. Here we reverse-engineer the neural code of Drosophila photoreceptors and show for the first time that photoreceptors exploit nonlinear dynamics to selectively enhance and encode phase-related features of temporal stimuli, such as local phase congruency, which are invariant to changes in illumination and contrast. We demonstrate that to mitigate for the inherent sensitivity to noise of the local phase congruency measure, the nonlinear coding mechanisms of the fly photoreceptors are tuned to suppress random phase signals, which explains why photoreceptor responses to naturalistic stimuli are significantly different from their responses to white noise stimuli. PMID:27336733

  4. Connexin 36 and rod bipolar cell independent rod pathways drive retinal ganglion cells and optokinetic reflexes.

    PubMed

    Cowan, Cameron S; Abd-El-Barr, Muhammad; van der Heijden, Meike; Lo, Eric M; Paul, David; Bramblett, Debra E; Lem, Janis; Simons, David L; Wu, Samuel M

    2016-02-01

    Rod pathways are a parallel set of synaptic connections which enable night vision by relaying and processing rod photoreceptor light responses. We use dim light stimuli to isolate rod pathway contributions to downstream light responses then characterize these contributions in knockout mice lacking rod transducin-α (Trα), or certain pathway components associated with subsets of rod pathways. These comparisons reveal that rod pathway driven light sensitivity in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) is entirely dependent on Trα, but partially independent of connexin 36 (Cx36) and rod bipolar cells. Pharmacological experiments show that rod pathway-driven and Cx36-independent RGC ON responses are also metabotropic glutamate receptor 6-dependent. To validate the RGC findings in awake, behaving animals we measured optokinetic reflexes (OKRs), which are sensitive to changes in ON pathways. Scotopic OKR contrast sensitivity was lost in Trα(-/-) mice, but indistinguishable from controls in Cx36(-/-) and rod bipolar cell knockout mice. Mesopic OKRs were also altered in mutant mice: Trα(-/-) mice had decreased spatial acuity, rod BC knockouts had decreased sensitivity, and Cx36(-/-) mice had increased sensitivity. These results provide compelling evidence against the complete Cx36 or rod BC dependence of night vision's ON component. Further, the findings suggest the parallel nature of rod pathways provides considerable redundancy to scotopic light sensitivity but distinct contributions to mesopic responses through complicated interactions with cone pathways. PMID:26718442

  5. Connexin 36 and rod bipolar cell independent rod pathways drive retinal ganglion cells and optokinetic reflexes.

    PubMed

    Cowan, Cameron S; Abd-El-Barr, Muhammad; van der Heijden, Meike; Lo, Eric M; Paul, David; Bramblett, Debra E; Lem, Janis; Simons, David L; Wu, Samuel M

    2016-02-01

    Rod pathways are a parallel set of synaptic connections which enable night vision by relaying and processing rod photoreceptor light responses. We use dim light stimuli to isolate rod pathway contributions to downstream light responses then characterize these contributions in knockout mice lacking rod transducin-α (Trα), or certain pathway components associated with subsets of rod pathways. These comparisons reveal that rod pathway driven light sensitivity in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) is entirely dependent on Trα, but partially independent of connexin 36 (Cx36) and rod bipolar cells. Pharmacological experiments show that rod pathway-driven and Cx36-independent RGC ON responses are also metabotropic glutamate receptor 6-dependent. To validate the RGC findings in awake, behaving animals we measured optokinetic reflexes (OKRs), which are sensitive to changes in ON pathways. Scotopic OKR contrast sensitivity was lost in Trα(-/-) mice, but indistinguishable from controls in Cx36(-/-) and rod bipolar cell knockout mice. Mesopic OKRs were also altered in mutant mice: Trα(-/-) mice had decreased spatial acuity, rod BC knockouts had decreased sensitivity, and Cx36(-/-) mice had increased sensitivity. These results provide compelling evidence against the complete Cx36 or rod BC dependence of night vision's ON component. Further, the findings suggest the parallel nature of rod pathways provides considerable redundancy to scotopic light sensitivity but distinct contributions to mesopic responses through complicated interactions with cone pathways.

  6. Cone rod dystrophies.

    PubMed

    Hamel, Christian P

    2007-01-01

    Cone rod dystrophies (CRDs) (prevalence 1/40,000) are inherited retinal dystrophies that belong to the group of pigmentary retinopathies. CRDs are characterized by retinal pigment deposits visible on fundus examination, predominantly localized to the macular region. In contrast to typical retinitis pigmentosa (RP), also called the rod cone dystrophies (RCDs) resulting from the primary loss in rod photoreceptors and later followed by the secondary loss in cone photoreceptors, CRDs reflect the opposite sequence of events. CRD is characterized by primary cone involvement, or, sometimes, by concomitant loss of both cones and rods that explains the predominant symptoms of CRDs: decreased visual acuity, color vision defects, photoaversion and decreased sensitivity in the central visual field, later followed by progressive loss in peripheral vision and night blindness. The clinical course of CRDs is generally more severe and rapid than that of RCDs, leading to earlier legal blindness and disability. At end stage, however, CRDs do not differ from RCDs. CRDs are most frequently non syndromic, but they may also be part of several syndromes, such as Bardet Biedl syndrome and Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 7 (SCA7). Non syndromic CRDs are genetically heterogeneous (ten cloned genes and three loci have been identified so far). The four major causative genes involved in the pathogenesis of CRDs are ABCA4 (which causes Stargardt disease and also 30 to 60% of autosomal recessive CRDs), CRX and GUCY2D (which are responsible for many reported cases of autosomal dominant CRDs), and RPGR (which causes about 2/3 of X-linked RP and also an undetermined percentage of X-linked CRDs). It is likely that highly deleterious mutations in genes that otherwise cause RP or macular dystrophy may also lead to CRDs. The diagnosis of CRDs is based on clinical history, fundus examination and electroretinogram. Molecular diagnosis can be made for some genes, genetic counseling is always advised. Currently

  7. Arf-like Protein 3 (ARL3) Regulates Protein Trafficking and Ciliogenesis in Mouse Photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Hanke-Gogokhia, Christin; Wu, Zhijian; Gerstner, Cecilia D; Frederick, Jeanne M; Zhang, Houbin; Baehr, Wolfgang

    2016-03-25

    Arf-like protein 3 (ARL3) is a ubiquitous small GTPase expressed in ciliated cells of plants and animals. Germline deletion ofArl3in mice causes multiorgan ciliopathy reminiscent of Bardet-Biedl or Joubert syndromes. As photoreceptors are elegantly compartmentalized and have cilia, we probed the function of ARL3 (ADP-ribosylation factor (Arf)-like 3 protein) by generating rod photoreceptor-specific (prefix(rod)) and retina-specific (prefix(ret))Arl3deletions. In predegenerate(rod)Arl3(-/-)mice, lipidated phototransduction proteins showed trafficking deficiencies, consistent with the role of ARL3 as a cargo displacement factor for lipid-binding proteins. By contrast,(ret)Arl3(-/-)rods and cones expressing Cre recombinase during embryonic development formed neither connecting cilia nor outer segments and degenerated rapidly. Absence of cilia infers participation of ARL3 in ciliogenesis and axoneme formation. Ciliogenesis was rescued, and degeneration was reversed in part by subretinal injection of adeno-associated virus particles expressing ARL3-EGFP. The conditional knock-out phenotypes permitted identification of two ARL3 functions, both in the GTP-bound form as follows: one as a regulator of intraflagellar transport participating in photoreceptor ciliogenesis and the other as a cargo displacement factor transporting lipidated protein to the outer segment. Surprisingly, a farnesylated inositol polyphosphate phosphatase only trafficked from the endoplasmic reticulum to the Golgi, thereby excluding it from a role in photoreceptor cilia physiology. PMID:26814127

  8. A Cambrian origin for vertebrate rods

    PubMed Central

    Asteriti, Sabrina; Grillner, Sten; Cangiano, Lorenzo

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates acquired dim-light vision when an ancestral cone evolved into the rod photoreceptor at an unknown stage preceding the last common ancestor of extant jawed vertebrates (∼420 million years ago Ma). The jawless lampreys provide a unique opportunity to constrain the timing of this advance, as their line diverged ∼505 Ma and later displayed high-morphological stability. We recorded with patch electrodes the inner segment photovoltages and with suction electrodes the outer segment photocurrents of Lampetra fluviatilis retinal photoreceptors. Several key functional features of jawed vertebrate rods are present in their phylogenetically homologous photoreceptors in lamprey: crucially, the efficient amplification of the effect of single photons, measured by multiple parameters, and the flow of rod signals into cones. These results make convergent evolution in the jawless and jawed vertebrate lines unlikely and indicate an early origin of rods, implying strong selective pressure toward dim-light vision in Cambrian ecosystems. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07166.001 PMID:26095697

  9. Photoreceptor cells constitutively express functional TLR4

    PubMed Central

    Tu, Zhidan; Portillo, Jose-Andres; Howell, Scott; Bu, Hong; Subauste, Carlos S.; Al-Ubaidi, Muayyad R; Pearlman, Eric; Lin, Feng

    2010-01-01

    Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) is expressed on a number of cells including neurons in the brain. However, it has yet to be determined if TLR4 is expressed on photoreceptor cells in the retina. In this report, we examined primary photoreceptor cells and an established photoreceptor cell line (661W). We found that functional TLR4 is constitutively expressed on photoreceptor cells, and can be activated by LPS. We conclude that TLR4 on photoreceptor cells could directly contribute to retinal inflammatory diseases and photoreceptor cell survival. PMID:20801528

  10. Photoreceptor types and distributions in the retinae of insectivores.

    PubMed

    Peichl, L; Künzle, H; Vogel, P

    2000-01-01

    The retinae of insectivores have been rarely studied, and their photoreceptor arrangements and expression patterns of visual pigments are largely unknown. We have determined the presence and distribution of cones in three species of shrews (common shrew Sorex araneus, greater white-toothed shrew Crocidura russula, dark forest shrew Crocidura poensis; Soricidae) and in the lesser hedgehog tenrec Echinops telfairi (Tenrecidae). Special cone types were identified and quantified in flattened whole retinae by antisera/antibodies recognizing the middle-to-long-wavelength-sensitive (M/L-)cone opsin and the short-wavelength-sensitive (S-)cone opsin, respectively. A combination of immunocytochemistry with conventional histology was used to assess rod densities and cone/rod ratios. In all four species the rods dominate at densities of about 230,000-260,000/mm2. M/L- and S-cones are present, comprising between 2% of the photoreceptors in the nocturnal Echinops telfairi and 13% in Sorex araneus that has equal diurnal and nocturnal activity phases. This suggests dichromatic color vision like in many other mammals. A striking feature in all four species are dramatically higher S-cone proportions in ventral than in dorsal retina (0.5% vs. 2.5-12% in Sorex, 5-15% vs. 30-45% in Crocidura poensis, 3-12% vs. 20-50% in Crocidura russula, 10-30% vs. 40-70% in Echinops). The functional and comparative aspects of these structural findings are discussed.

  11. The functional cycle of visual arrestins in photoreceptor cells

    PubMed Central

    Gurevich, Vsevolod V.; Hanson, Susan M.; Song, Xiufeng; Vishnivetskiy, Sergey A.; Gurevich, Eugenia V.

    2011-01-01

    Visual arrestin-1 plays a key role in the rapid and reproducible shutoff of rhodopsin signaling. Its highly selective binding to light-activated phosphorylated rhodopsin is an integral part of the functional perfection of rod photoreceptors. Structure-function studies revealed key elements of the sophisticated molecular mechanism ensuring arrestin-1 selectivity and paved the way to the targeted manipulation of the arrestin-1 molecule to design mutants that can compensate for congenital defects in rhodopsin phosphorylation. Arrestin-1 self-association and light-dependent translocation in photoreceptor cells work together to keep a constant supply of active rhodopsin-binding arrestin-1 monomer in the outer segment. Recent discoveries of arrestin-1 interaction with other signaling proteins suggest that it is a much more versatile signaling regulator than previously thought, affecting the function of the synaptic terminals and rod survival. Elucidation of the fine molecular mechanisms of arrestin-1 interactions with rhodopsin and other binding partners is necessary for the comprehensive understanding of rod function and for devising novel molecular tools and therapeutic approaches to the treatment of visual disorders. PMID:21824527

  12. Expression of Synaptic and Phototransduction Markers During Photoreceptor Development in the Marmoset Monkey Callithrix jacchus

    PubMed Central

    HENDRICKSON, ANITA; TROILO, DAVID; DJAJADI, HIDAYAT; POSSIN, DANIEL; SPRINGER, ALAN

    2009-01-01

    Marmoset photoreceptor development was studied to determine the expression sequence for synaptic, opsin, and phototransduction proteins. All markers appear first in cones within the incipient foveal center or in rods at the foveal edge. Recoverin appears in cones across 70% of the retina at fetal day (Fd) 88, indicating that it is expressed shortly after photoreceptors are generated. Synaptic markers synaptophysin, SV2, glutamate vesicular transporter 1, and CTBP2 label foveal cones at Fd 88 and cones at the retinal edge around birth. Cones and rods have distinctly different patterns of synaptic protein and opsin expression. Synaptic markers are expressed first in cones, with a considerable delay before they appear in rods at the same eccentricity. Cones express synaptic markers 2–3 weeks before they express opsin, but rods express opsin 2–4 weeks before rod synaptic marker labeling is detected. Medium/long-wavelength-selective (M&L) opsin appears in foveal cones and rod opsin in rods around the fovea at Fd 100. Very few cones expressing short-wavelength-selective (S) opsin are found in the Fd 105 fovea. Across peripheral retina, opsin appears first in rods, followed about 1 week later by M&L cone opsin. S cone opsin appears last, and all opsins reach the retinal edge by 1 week after birth. Cone transducin and rod arrestin are expressed concurrently with opsin, but cone arrestin appears slightly later. Marmoset photoreceptor development differs from that in Macaca and humans. It starts relatively late, at 56% gestation, compared with Macaca at 32% gestation. The marmoset opsin expression sequence is also different from that of either Macaca or human. PMID:19003975

  13. Proteomic Changes in the Photoreceptor Outer Segment Upon Intense Light Exposure

    PubMed Central

    Hajkova, Dagmar; Imanishi, Yoshikazu; Palamalai, Vikram; Rao, K. C. Sekhar; Yuan, Chao; Sheng, Quanhu; Tang, Haixu; Zeng, Rong; Darrow, Ruth M.; Organisciak, Daniel T.; Miyagi, Masaru

    2010-01-01

    Acute light-induced photoreceptor degeneration has been studied in experimental animals as a model for photoreceptor cell loss in human retinal degenerative diseases. Light absorption by rhodopsin in rod photoreceptor outer segments (OS) induces oxidative stress and initiates apoptotic cell death. However, the molecular events that induce oxidative stress and initiate the apoptotic cascade remain poorly understood. To better understand the molecular mechanisms of light-induced photoreceptor cell death, we studied the proteomic changes in OS upon intense light exposure by using a proteolytic 18O labeling method. Of 171 proteins identified, the relative abundance of 98 proteins in light-exposed and unexposed OS was determined. The quantities of 11 proteins were found to differ by more than 2-fold between light-exposed OS and those remaining in darkness. Among the 11 proteins, 8 were phototransduction proteins and 7 of these were altered such that the efficiency of phototransduction would be reduced or quenched during light exposure. In contrast, the amount of OS rhodopsin kinase was reduced by 2-fold after light exposure, suggesting attenuation in the mechanism of quenching phototransduction. Liquid chromatography multiple reaction monitoring (LC-MRM) was performed to confirm this reduction in the quantity of rhodopsin kinase. As revealed by immunofluorescence microscopy, this reduction of rhodopsin kinase is not a result of protein translocation from the outer to the inner segment. Collectively, our findings suggest that the absolute quantity of rhodopsin kinase in rod photoreceptors is reduced upon light stimulation and that this reduction may be a contributing factor to light-induced photoreceptor cell death. This report provides new insights into the proteomic changes in the OS upon intense light exposure and creates a foundation for understanding the mechanisms of light-induced photoreceptor cell death. PMID:20020778

  14. Visual eyes: a quantitative analysis of the photoreceptor layer in deep-sea sharks.

    PubMed

    Newman, Amy S; Marshall, Justin N; Collin, Shaun P

    2013-01-01

    The marine environment presents unique visual challenges for a range of organisms, particularly those dwelling at great depths, where sunlight may either be absent or drop to very low levels. Under these environmental conditions, the visual system must maximise light absorption in order to enhance the detection of prey, predators and potential mates. Using stereological analysis of retinal wholemounts, the distribution and number of photoreceptors (rods) was determined for 5 deep-sea shark species from a range of depths (46-1,500 m). All species possessed areas of increased photoreceptor density (with peaks between 41,000 and 82,000 rods/mm(2)) within discrete regions of the retina. The total number of rods in the photoreceptor layer also varied between 17 × 10(6) and 63 × 10(6). It is evident that increasing sensitivity of the retina is an important adaptation to life in the deep sea. The location of discrete areas of high cell density within the photoreceptor layer of the retina corresponds to discrete areas of the visual field that are sampled at a higher intensity, hence increasing sensitivity. The location of these areas of increased sensitivity differed between the species of this study. The disparity of areas of increased sensitivity seen between species is thought to reflect distinctive predator avoidance and prey capture strategies. This study reveals that the visual demands of deep-sea sharks vary interspecifically and that sampling of each species' visual field is not solely determined by its habitat. PMID:24280649

  15. Diacylglycerol kinase epsilon in bovine and rat photoreceptor cells. Light-dependent distribution in photoreceptor cells.

    PubMed

    Natalini, Paola M; Zulian, Sandra E; Ilincheta de Boschero, Mónica G; Giusto, Norma M

    2013-07-01

    The present study shows the selective light-dependent distribution of 1,2-diacylglycerol kinase epsilon (DAGKɛ) in photoreceptor cells from bovine and albino rat retina. Immunofluorescence microscopy in isolated rod outer segments from bleached bovine retinas (BBROS) revealed a higher DAGKɛ signal than that found in rod outer segments from dark-adapted bovine retinas (BDROS). The light-dependent outer segment localization of DAGKɛ was also observed by immunohistochemistry in retinas from albino rats. DAGK activity, measured in terms of phosphatidic acid formation from a) [(3)H]DAG and ATP in the presence of EGTA and R59022, a type I DAGK inhibitor, or b) [γ-(32)P]ATP and 1-stearoyl, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (SAG), was found to be significantly higher in BBROS than in BDROS. Higher light-dependent DAGK activity (condition b) was also found when ROS were isolated from dark-adapted rat retinas exposed to light. Western blot analysis of isolated ROS proteins from bovine and rat retinas confirmed that illumination increases DAGKɛ content in the outer segments of these two species. Light-dependent DAGKɛ localization in the outer segment was not observed when U73122, a phospholipase C inhibitor, was present prior to the exposure of rat eyecups (in situ model) to light. Furthermore, no increased PA synthesis from [(3)H]DAG and ATP was observed in the presence of neomycin prior to the exposure of bovine eyecups to light. Interestingly, when BBROS were pre-phosphorylated with ATP in the presence of 1,2-dioctanoyl sn-glycerol (di-C8) or phorbol dibutyrate (PDBu) as PKC activation conditions, higher DAGK activity was observed than in dephosphorylated controls. Taken together, our findings suggest that the selective distribution of DAGKɛ in photoreceptor cells is a light-dependent mechanism that promotes increased SAG removal and synthesis of 1-stearoyl, 2-arachidonoyl phosphatidic acid in the sensorial portion of this cell, thus demonstrating a novel mechanism of light

  16. Imaging Ca2+ dynamics in cone photoreceptor axon terminals of the mouse retina.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, Manoj; Schubert, Timm; Baden, Tom; Wissinger, Bernd; Euler, Thomas; Paquet-Durand, Francois

    2015-01-01

    Retinal cone photoreceptors (cones) serve daylight vision and are the basis of color discrimination. They are subject to degeneration, often leading to blindness in many retinal diseases. Calcium (Ca(2+)), a key second messenger in photoreceptor signaling and metabolism, has been proposed to be indirectly linked with photoreceptor degeneration in various animal models. Systematically studying these aspects of cone physiology and pathophysiology has been hampered by the difficulties of electrically recording from these small cells, in particular in the mouse where the retina is dominated by rod photoreceptors. To circumvent this issue, we established a two-photon Ca(2+) imaging protocol using a transgenic mouse line that expresses the genetically encoded Ca(2+) biosensor TN-XL exclusively in cones and can be crossbred with mouse models for photoreceptor degeneration. The protocol described here involves preparing vertical sections ("slices") of retinas from mice and optical imaging of light stimulus-evoked changes in cone Ca(2+) level. The protocol also allows "in-slice measurement" of absolute Ca(2+) concentrations; as the recordings can be followed by calibration. This protocol enables studies into functional cone properties and is expected to contribute to the understanding of cone Ca(2+) signaling as well as the potential involvement of Ca(2+) in photoreceptor death and retinal degeneration. PMID:25993489

  17. Imaging Ca2+ dynamics in cone photoreceptor axon terminals of the mouse retina.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, Manoj; Schubert, Timm; Baden, Tom; Wissinger, Bernd; Euler, Thomas; Paquet-Durand, Francois

    2015-05-06

    Retinal cone photoreceptors (cones) serve daylight vision and are the basis of color discrimination. They are subject to degeneration, often leading to blindness in many retinal diseases. Calcium (Ca(2+)), a key second messenger in photoreceptor signaling and metabolism, has been proposed to be indirectly linked with photoreceptor degeneration in various animal models. Systematically studying these aspects of cone physiology and pathophysiology has been hampered by the difficulties of electrically recording from these small cells, in particular in the mouse where the retina is dominated by rod photoreceptors. To circumvent this issue, we established a two-photon Ca(2+) imaging protocol using a transgenic mouse line that expresses the genetically encoded Ca(2+) biosensor TN-XL exclusively in cones and can be crossbred with mouse models for photoreceptor degeneration. The protocol described here involves preparing vertical sections ("slices") of retinas from mice and optical imaging of light stimulus-evoked changes in cone Ca(2+) level. The protocol also allows "in-slice measurement" of absolute Ca(2+) concentrations; as the recordings can be followed by calibration. This protocol enables studies into functional cone properties and is expected to contribute to the understanding of cone Ca(2+) signaling as well as the potential involvement of Ca(2+) in photoreceptor death and retinal degeneration.

  18. Imaging Ca2+ Dynamics in Cone Photoreceptor Axon Terminals of the Mouse Retina

    PubMed Central

    Kulkarni, Manoj; Schubert, Timm; Baden, Tom; Wissinger, Bernd; Euler, Thomas; Paquet-Durand, Francois

    2015-01-01

    Retinal cone photoreceptors (cones) serve daylight vision and are the basis of color discrimination. They are subject to degeneration, often leading to blindness in many retinal diseases. Calcium (Ca2+), a key second messenger in photoreceptor signaling and metabolism, has been proposed to be indirectly linked with photoreceptor degeneration in various animal models. Systematically studying these aspects of cone physiology and pathophysiology has been hampered by the difficulties of electrically recording from these small cells, in particular in the mouse where the retina is dominated by rod photoreceptors. To circumvent this issue, we established a two-photon Ca2+ imaging protocol using a transgenic mouse line that expresses the genetically encoded Ca2+ biosensor TN-XL exclusively in cones and can be crossbred with mouse models for photoreceptor degeneration. The protocol described here involves preparing vertical sections (“slices”) of retinas from mice and optical imaging of light stimulus-evoked changes in cone Ca2+ level. The protocol also allows “in-slice measurement” of absolute Ca2+ concentrations; as the recordings can be followed by calibration. This protocol enables studies into functional cone properties and is expected to contribute to the understanding of cone Ca2+ signaling as well as the potential involvement of Ca2+ in photoreceptor death and retinal degeneration. PMID:25993489

  19. Retinal cone photoreceptors of the deer mouse Peromyscus maniculatus: development, topography, opsin expression and spectral tuning.

    PubMed

    Arbogast, Patrick; Glösmann, Martin; Peichl, Leo

    2013-01-01

    A quantitative analysis of photoreceptor properties was performed in the retina of the nocturnal deer mouse, Peromyscus maniculatus, using pigmented (wildtype) and albino animals. The aim was to establish whether the deer mouse is a more suitable model species than the house mouse for photoreceptor studies, and whether oculocutaneous albinism affects its photoreceptor properties. In retinal flatmounts, cone photoreceptors were identified by opsin immunostaining, and their numbers, spectral types, and distributions across the retina were determined. Rod photoreceptors were counted using differential interference contrast microscopy. Pigmented P. maniculatus have a rod-dominated retina with rod densities of about 450.000/mm(2) and cone densities of 3000-6500/mm(2). Two cone opsins, shortwave sensitive (S) and middle-to-longwave sensitive (M), are present and expressed in distinct cone types. Partial sequencing of the S opsin gene strongly supports UV sensitivity of the S cone visual pigment. The S cones constitute a 5-15% minority of the cones. Different from house mouse, S and M cone distributions do not have dorsoventral gradients, and coexpression of both opsins in single cones is exceptional (<2% of the cones). In albino P. maniculatus, rod densities are reduced by approximately 40% (270.000/mm(2)). Overall, cone density and the density of cones exclusively expressing S opsin are not significantly different from pigmented P. maniculatus. However, in albino retinas S opsin is coexpressed with M opsin in 60-90% of the cones and therefore the population of cones expressing only M opsin is significantly reduced to 5-25%. In conclusion, deer mouse cone properties largely conform to the general mammalian pattern, hence the deer mouse may be better suited than the house mouse for the study of certain basic cone properties, including the effects of albinism on cone opsin expression. PMID:24260509

  20. Visual ecology and voltage-gated ion channels in insect photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Weckström, M; Laughlin, S B

    1995-01-01

    That particular membrane conductances are selected for expression to enable the efficient coding of biologically relevant signals is illustrated by recent work on insect photoreceptors. These studies exploit the richness of insect vision and the accessibility of insect photoreceptors to cellular analysis in both intact animal and isolated cell preparations. The distribution of voltage-gated conductances among photoreceptors of different species correlates with visual ecology. Delayed-rectifier K+ channels are found in the rapidly responding photoreceptors of fast-flying flies. The conductance's activation range and dynamics match light-induced signals, and enable a rapid response by reducing the membrane time constant. Slow-moving flies have slowly responding photoreceptors that lack the delayed rectifier, but express an inactivating K+ conductance that is metabolically less demanding. Complementing these findings, locust photoreceptor membranes are modulated diurnally. The delayed rectifier is exhibited during the day and the inactivating K+ current is exhibited at night. Insect photoreceptors also demonstrate the amplification of signals by voltage-gated Na+ channels. In drone-bee photoreceptors, voltage-gated Na+ channels combine with K+ channels to enhance the small transient signals produced by the image of a queen bee passing over the retina. This subthreshold amplifier operates most effectively over the range of light intensities at which drones pursue queens.

  1. Large variation among photoreceptors as the basis of visual flexibility in the common backswimmer

    PubMed Central

    Immonen, Esa-Ville; Ignatova, Irina; Gislen, Anna; Warrant, Eric; Vähäsöyrinki, Mikko; Weckström, Matti; Frolov, Roman

    2014-01-01

    The common backswimmer, Notonecta glauca, uses vision by day and night for functions such as underwater prey animal capture and flight in search of new habitats. Although previous studies have identified some of the physiological mechanisms facilitating such flexibility in the animal's vision, neither the biophysics of Notonecta photoreceptors nor possible cellular adaptations are known. Here, we studied Notonecta photoreceptors using patch-clamp and intracellular recording methods. Photoreceptor size (approximated by capacitance) was positively correlated with absolute sensitivity and acceptance angles. Information rate measurements indicated that large and more sensitive photoreceptors performed better than small ones. Our results suggest that backswimmers are adapted for vision in both dim and well-illuminated environments by having open-rhabdom eyes with large intrinsic variation in absolute sensitivity among photoreceptors, exceeding those found in purely diurnal or nocturnal species. Both electrophysiology and microscopic analysis of retinal structure suggest two retinal subsystems: the largest peripheral photoreceptors provide vision in dim light and the smaller peripheral and central photoreceptors function primarily in sunlight, with light-dependent pigment screening further contributing to adaptation in this system by dynamically recruiting photoreceptors with varying sensitivity into the operational pool. PMID:25274359

  2. Bifurcation analysis of a photoreceptor interaction model for Retinitis Pigmentosa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camacho, Erika T.; Radulescu, Anca; Wirkus, Stephen

    2016-09-01

    Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) is the term used to describe a diverse set of degenerative eye diseases affecting the photoreceptors (rods and cones) in the retina. This work builds on an existing mathematical model of RP that focused on the interaction of the rods and cones. We non-dimensionalize the model and examine the stability of the equilibria. We then numerically investigate other stable modes that are present in the system for various parameter values and relate these modes to the original problem. Our results show that stable modes exist for a wider range of parameter values than the stability of the equilibrium solutions alone, suggesting that additional approaches to preventing cone death may exist.

  3. 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

  4. Visual Coding in Locust Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Faivre, Olivier; Juusola, Mikko

    2008-01-01

    Information capture by photoreceptors ultimately limits the quality of visual processing in the brain. Using conventional sharp microelectrodes, we studied how locust photoreceptors encode random (white-noise, WN) and naturalistic (1/f stimuli, NS) light patterns in vivo and how this coding changes with mean illumination and ambient temperature. We also examined the role of their plasma membrane in shaping voltage responses. We found that brightening or warming increase and accelerate voltage responses, but reduce noise, enabling photoreceptors to encode more information. For WN stimuli, this was accompanied by broadening of the linear frequency range. On the contrary, with NS the signaling took place within a constant bandwidth, possibly revealing a ‘preference’ for inputs with 1/f statistics. The faster signaling was caused by acceleration of the elementary phototransduction current - leading to bumps - and their distribution. The membrane linearly translated phototransduction currents into voltage responses without limiting the throughput of these messages. As the bumps reflected fast changes in membrane resistance, the data suggest that their shape is predominantly driven by fast changes in the light-gated conductance. On the other hand, the slower bump latency distribution is likely to represent slower enzymatic intracellular reactions. Furthermore, the Q10s of bump duration and latency distribution depended on light intensity. Altogether, this study suggests that biochemical constraints imposed upon signaling change continuously as locust photoreceptors adapt to environmental light and temperature conditions. PMID:18478123

  5. Molecular chaperones and photoreceptor function

    PubMed Central

    Kosmaoglou, Maria; Schwarz, Nele; Bett, John S.; Cheetham, Michael E.

    2008-01-01

    Molecular chaperones facilitate and regulate protein conformational change within cells. This encompasses many fundamental cellular processes: including the correct folding of nascent chains; protein transport and translocation; signal transduction and protein quality control. Chaperones are, therefore, important in several forms of human disease, including neurodegeneration. Within the retina, the highly specialized photoreceptor cell presents a fascinating paradigm to investigate the specialization of molecular chaperone function and reveals unique chaperone requirements essential to photoreceptor function. Mutations in several photoreceptor proteins lead to protein misfolding mediated neurodegeneration. The best characterized of these are mutations in the molecular light sensor, rhodopsin, which cause autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. Rhodopsin biogenesis is likely to require chaperones, while rhodopsin misfolding involves molecular chaperones in quality control and the cellular response to protein aggregation. Furthermore, the specialization of components of the chaperone machinery to photoreceptor specific roles has been revealed by the identification of mutations in molecular chaperones that cause inherited retinal dysfunction and degeneration. These chaperones are involved in several important cellular pathways and further illuminate the essential and diverse roles of molecular chaperones. PMID:18490186

  6. Age-Related Deterioration of Rod Vision in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Kolesnikov, Alexander V.; Fan, Jie; Crouch, Rosalie K.; Kefalov, Vladimir J.

    2010-01-01

    Even in healthy individuals, aging leads to deterioration in visual acuity, contrast sensitivity, visual field, and dark adaptation. Little is known about the neural mechanisms that drive the age-related changes of the retina and more specifically of photoreceptors. According to one hypothesis, the age-related deterioration in rod function is due to the limited availability of 11-cis-retinal for rod pigment formation. To determine how aging affects rod photoreceptors and to test the retinoid deficiency hypothesis, we compared the morphological and functional properties of rods of adult and aged B6D2F1/J mice. We found that the number of rods and the length of their outer segments were significantly reduced in 2.5 year-old mice compared to 4 month-old animals. Aging also resulted in a 2-fold reduction in the total level of opsin in the retina. Behavioral tests revealed that scotopic visual acuity and contrast sensitivity were decreased by 2-fold in aged mice, and rod ERG recordings demonstrated reduced amplitudes of both a- and b-waves. Sensitivity of aged rods determined from single-cell recordings was also decreased by 1.5-fold, corresponding to not more than 1% free opsin in these photoreceptors, and kinetic parameters of dim flash response were not altered. Notably, the rate of rod dark adaptation was unaffected by age. Thus, our results argue against age-related deficiency of 11-cis-retinal in the B6D2F1/J mouse rod visual cycle. Surprisingly, the level of cellular dark noise was increased in aged rods providing an alternative mechanism for their desensitization. PMID:20720130

  7. The Influence of Photoreceptor Size and Distribution on Optical Sensitivity in the Eyes of Lanternfishes (Myctophidae)

    PubMed Central

    de Busserolles, Fanny; Fitzpatrick, John L.; Marshall, N. Justin; Collin, Shaun P.

    2014-01-01

    The mesopelagic zone of the deep-sea (200-1000 m) is characterised by exponentially diminishing levels of downwelling sunlight and by the predominance of bioluminescence emissions. The ability of mesopelagic organisms to detect and behaviourally react to downwelling sunlight and/or bioluminescence will depend on the visual task and ultimately on the eyes and their capacity for detecting low levels of illumination and intermittent point sources of bioluminescent light. In this study, we investigate the diversity of the visual system of the lanternfish (Myctophidae). We focus specifically on the photoreceptor cells by examining their size, arrangement, topographic distribution and contribution to optical sensitivity in 53 different species from 18 genera. We also examine the influence(s) of both phylogeny and ecology on these photoreceptor variables using phylogenetic comparative analyses in order to understand the constraints placed on the visual systems of this large group of mesopelagic fishes at the first stage of retinal processing. We report great diversity in the visual system of the Myctophidae at the level of the photoreceptors. Photoreceptor distribution reveals clear interspecific differences in visual specialisations (areas of high rod photoreceptor density), indicating potential interspecific differences in interactions with prey, predators and/or mates. A great diversity in photoreceptor design (length and diameter) and density is also present. Overall, the myctophid eye is very sensitive compared to other teleosts and each species seems to be specialised for the detection of a specific signal (downwelling light or bioluminescence), potentially reflecting different visual demands for survival. Phylogenetic comparative analyses highlight several relationships between photoreceptor characteristics and the ecological variables tested (depth distribution and luminous tissue patterns). Depth distribution at night was a significant factor in most of the

  8. Melatonin modulates M4-type ganglion-cell photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Pack, W; Hill, D D; Wong, K Y

    2015-09-10

    In the retina, melatonin is secreted at night by rod/cone photoreceptors and serves as a dark-adaptive signal. Melatonin receptors have been found in many retinal neurons including melanopsin-containing intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs), suggesting it could modulate the physiology of these inner retinal photoreceptors. Here, we investigated whether melatonin modulates the alpha-like M4-type ipRGCs, which are believed to mediate image-forming vision as well as non-image-forming photoresponses. Applying melatonin during daytime (when endogenous melatonin secretion is low) caused whole-cell-recorded M4 cells' rod/cone-driven depolarizing photoresponses to become broader and larger, whereas the associated elevation in spike rate was reduced. Melanopsin-based light responses were not affected significantly. Nighttime application of the melatonin receptor antagonist luzindole also altered M4 cells' rod/cone-driven light responses but in the opposite ways: the duration and amplitude of the graded depolarization were reduced, whereas the accompanying spiking increase was enhanced. These luzindole-induced changes confirmed that M4 cells are modulated by endogenous melatonin. Melatonin could induce the above effects by acting directly on M4 cells because immunohistochemistry detected MT1 receptors in these cells, although it could also act presynaptically. Interestingly, the daytime and nighttime recordings showed significant differences in resting membrane potential, spontaneous spike rate and rod/cone-driven light responses, suggesting that M4 cells are under circadian control. This is the first report of a circadian variation in ipRGCs' resting properties and synaptic input, and of melatoninergic modulation of ipRGCs. PMID:26141846

  9. The two-step development of a duplex retina involves distinct events of cone and rod neurogenesis and differentiation.

    PubMed

    Valen, Ragnhild; Eilertsen, Mariann; Edvardsen, Rolf Brudvik; Furmanek, Tomasz; Rønnestad, Ivar; van der Meeren, Terje; Karlsen, Ørjan; Nilsen, Tom Ole; Helvik, Jon Vidar

    2016-08-15

    Unlike in mammals, persistent postembryonic retinal growth is a characteristic feature of fish, which includes major remodeling events that affect all cell types including photoreceptors. Consequently, visual capabilities change during development, where retinal sensitivity to different wavelengths of light (photopic vision), -and to limited photons (scotopic vision) are central capabilities for survival. Differently from well-established model fish, Atlantic cod has a prolonged larval stage where only cone photoreceptors are present. Rods do not appear until juvenile transition (metamorphosis), a hallmark of indirect developing species. Previously we showed that whole gene families of lws (red-sensitive) and sws1 (UV-sensitive) opsins have been lost in cod, while rh2a (green-sensitive) and sws2 (blue-sensitive) genes have tandem duplicated. Here, we provide a comprehensive characterization of a two-step developing duplex retina in Atlantic cod. The study focuses on cone subtype dynamics and delayed rod neurogenesis and differentiation in all cod life stages. Using transcriptomic and histological approaches we show that different opsins disappear in a topographic manner during development where central to peripheral retina is a key axis of expressional change. Early cone differentiation was initiated in dorso-temporal retina different from previously described in fish. Rods first appeared during initiation of metamorphosis and expression of the nuclear receptor transcription factor nr2e3-1, suggest involvement in rod specification. The indirect developmental strategy thus allows for separate studies of cones and rods development, which in nature correlates with visual changes linked to habitat shifts. The clustering of key retinal genes according to life stage, suggests that Atlantic cod with its sequenced genome may be an important resource for identification of underlying factors required for development and function of photopic and scotopic vision. PMID:27374844

  10. The two-step development of a duplex retina involves distinct events of cone and rod neurogenesis and differentiation.

    PubMed

    Valen, Ragnhild; Eilertsen, Mariann; Edvardsen, Rolf Brudvik; Furmanek, Tomasz; Rønnestad, Ivar; van der Meeren, Terje; Karlsen, Ørjan; Nilsen, Tom Ole; Helvik, Jon Vidar

    2016-08-15

    Unlike in mammals, persistent postembryonic retinal growth is a characteristic feature of fish, which includes major remodeling events that affect all cell types including photoreceptors. Consequently, visual capabilities change during development, where retinal sensitivity to different wavelengths of light (photopic vision), -and to limited photons (scotopic vision) are central capabilities for survival. Differently from well-established model fish, Atlantic cod has a prolonged larval stage where only cone photoreceptors are present. Rods do not appear until juvenile transition (metamorphosis), a hallmark of indirect developing species. Previously we showed that whole gene families of lws (red-sensitive) and sws1 (UV-sensitive) opsins have been lost in cod, while rh2a (green-sensitive) and sws2 (blue-sensitive) genes have tandem duplicated. Here, we provide a comprehensive characterization of a two-step developing duplex retina in Atlantic cod. The study focuses on cone subtype dynamics and delayed rod neurogenesis and differentiation in all cod life stages. Using transcriptomic and histological approaches we show that different opsins disappear in a topographic manner during development where central to peripheral retina is a key axis of expressional change. Early cone differentiation was initiated in dorso-temporal retina different from previously described in fish. Rods first appeared during initiation of metamorphosis and expression of the nuclear receptor transcription factor nr2e3-1, suggest involvement in rod specification. The indirect developmental strategy thus allows for separate studies of cones and rods development, which in nature correlates with visual changes linked to habitat shifts. The clustering of key retinal genes according to life stage, suggests that Atlantic cod with its sequenced genome may be an important resource for identification of underlying factors required for development and function of photopic and scotopic vision.

  11. Protein and Signaling Networks in Vertebrate Photoreceptor Cells

    PubMed Central

    Koch, Karl-Wilhelm; Dell’Orco, Daniele

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrate photoreceptor cells are exquisite light detectors operating under very dim and bright illumination. The photoexcitation and adaptation machinery in photoreceptor cells consists of protein complexes that can form highly ordered supramolecular structures and control the homeostasis and mutual dependence of the secondary messengers cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) and Ca2+. The visual pigment in rod photoreceptors, the G protein-coupled receptor rhodopsin is organized in tracks of dimers thereby providing a signaling platform for the dynamic scaffolding of the G protein transducin. Illuminated rhodopsin is turned off by phosphorylation catalyzed by rhodopsin kinase (GRK1) under control of Ca2+-recoverin. The GRK1 protein complex partly assembles in lipid raft structures, where shutting off rhodopsin seems to be more effective. Re-synthesis of cGMP is another crucial step in the recovery of the photoresponse after illumination. It is catalyzed by membrane bound sensory guanylate cyclases (GCs) and is regulated by specific neuronal Ca2+-sensor proteins called guanylate cyclase-activating proteins (GCAPs). At least one GC (ROS-GC1) was shown to be part of a multiprotein complex having strong interactions with the cytoskeleton and being controlled in a multimodal Ca2+-dependent fashion. The final target of the cGMP signaling cascade is a cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channel that is a hetero-oligomeric protein located in the plasma membrane and interacting with accessory proteins in highly organized microdomains. We summarize results and interpretations of findings related to the inhomogeneous organization of signaling units in photoreceptor outer segments. PMID:26635520

  12. AAV Vectors for FRET-Based Analysis of Protein-Protein Interactions in Photoreceptor Outer Segments

    PubMed Central

    Becirovic, Elvir; Böhm, Sybille; Nguyen, Ong N. P.; Riedmayr, Lisa M.; Hammelmann, Verena; Schön, Christian; Butz, Elisabeth S.; Wahl-Schott, Christian; Biel, Martin; Michalakis, Stylianos

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a powerful method for the detection and quantification of stationary and dynamic protein-protein interactions. Technical limitations have hampered systematic in vivo FRET experiments to study protein-protein interactions in their native environment. Here, we describe a rapid and robust protocol that combines adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector-mediated in vivo delivery of genetically encoded FRET partners with ex vivo FRET measurements. The method was established on acutely isolated outer segments of murine rod and cone photoreceptors and relies on the high co-transduction efficiency of retinal photoreceptors by co-delivered AAV vectors. The procedure can be used for the systematic analysis of protein-protein interactions of wild type or mutant outer segment proteins in their native environment. Conclusively, our protocol can help to characterize the physiological and pathophysiological relevance of photoreceptor specific proteins and, in principle, should also be transferable to other cell types. PMID:27516733

  13. AAV Vectors for FRET-Based Analysis of Protein-Protein Interactions in Photoreceptor Outer Segments.

    PubMed

    Becirovic, Elvir; Böhm, Sybille; Nguyen, Ong N P; Riedmayr, Lisa M; Hammelmann, Verena; Schön, Christian; Butz, Elisabeth S; Wahl-Schott, Christian; Biel, Martin; Michalakis, Stylianos

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a powerful method for the detection and quantification of stationary and dynamic protein-protein interactions. Technical limitations have hampered systematic in vivo FRET experiments to study protein-protein interactions in their native environment. Here, we describe a rapid and robust protocol that combines adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector-mediated in vivo delivery of genetically encoded FRET partners with ex vivo FRET measurements. The method was established on acutely isolated outer segments of murine rod and cone photoreceptors and relies on the high co-transduction efficiency of retinal photoreceptors by co-delivered AAV vectors. The procedure can be used for the systematic analysis of protein-protein interactions of wild type or mutant outer segment proteins in their native environment. Conclusively, our protocol can help to characterize the physiological and pathophysiological relevance of photoreceptor specific proteins and, in principle, should also be transferable to other cell types. PMID:27516733

  14. Lack of protein-tyrosine sulfation disrupts photoreceptor outer segment morphogenesis, retinal function and retinal anatomy.

    PubMed

    Sherry, David M; Murray, Anne R; Kanan, Yogita; Arbogast, Kelsey L; Hamilton, Robert A; Fliesler, Steven J; Burns, Marie E; Moore, Kevin L; Al-Ubaidi, Muayyad R

    2010-11-01

    To investigate the role(s) of protein-tyrosine sulfation in the retina, we examined retinal function and structure in mice lacking tyrosylprotein sulfotransferases (TPST) 1 and 2. Tpst double knockout (DKO; Tpst1(-/-) /Tpst2 (-/-) ) retinas had drastically reduced electroretinographic responses, although their photoreceptors exhibited normal responses in single cell recordings. These retinas appeared normal histologically; however, the rod photoreceptors had ultrastructurally abnormal outer segments, with membrane evulsions into the extracellular space, irregular disc membrane spacing and expanded intradiscal space. Photoreceptor synaptic terminals were disorganized in Tpst DKO retinas, but established ultrastructurally normal synapses, as did bipolar and amacrine cells; however, the morphology and organization of neuronal processes in the inner retina were abnormal. These results indicate that protein-tyrosine sulfation is essential for proper outer segment morphogenesis and synaptic function, but is not critical for overall retinal structure or synapse formation, and may serve broader functions in neuronal development and maintenance.

  15. Genetic Dissection Reveals Two Separate Pathways for Rod and Cone Regeneration in the Teleost Retina

    PubMed Central

    Morris, Ann C.; Scholz, Tamera L.; Brockerhoff, Susan E.; Fadool, James M.

    2009-01-01

    Development of therapies to treat visual system dystrophies resulting from the degeneration of rod and cone photoreceptors may directly benefit from studies of animal models, such as the zebrafish, that display continuous retinal neurogenesis and the capacity for injury-induced regeneration. Previous studies of retinal regeneration in fish have been conducted on adult animals and have relied on methods that cause acute damage to both rods and cones, as well as other retinal cell types. We report here the use of a genetic approach to study progenitor cell responses to photoreceptor degeneration in the larval and adult zebrafish retina. We have compared the responses to selective rod or cone degeneration using, respectively, the XOPS-mCFP transgenic line and zebrafish with a null mutation in the pde6c gene. Notably, rod degeneration induces increased proliferation of progenitors in the outer nuclear layer (ONL) and is not associated with proliferation or reactive gliosis in the inner nuclear layer (INL). Molecular characterization of the rod progenitor cells demonstrated that they are committed to the rod photoreceptor fate while they are still mitotic. In contrast, cone degeneration induces both Müller cell proliferation and reactive gliosis, with little change in proliferation in the ONL. We found that in both lines, proliferative responses to photoreceptor degeneration can be observed as 7 days post fertilization (dpf). These two genetic models therefore offer new opportunities for investigating the molecular mechanisms of selective degeneration and regeneration of rods and cones. PMID:18265406

  16. Estimating photoreceptor excitations from spectral outputs of a personal light exposure measurement device.

    PubMed

    Cao, Dingcai; Barrionuevo, Pablo A

    2015-03-01

    The intrinsic circadian clock requires photoentrainment to synchronize the 24-hour solar day. Therefore, light stimulation is an important component of chronobiological research. Currently, the chronobiological research field overwhelmingly uses photopic illuminance that is based on the luminous efficiency function, V(λ), to quantify light levels. However, recent discovery of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs), which are activated by self-contained melanopsin photopigment and also by inputs from rods and cones, makes light specification using a one-dimensional unit inadequate. Since the current understanding of how different photoreceptor inputs contribute to the circadian system through ipRGCs is limited, it is recommended to specify light in terms of the excitations of five photoreceptors (S-, M-, L-cones, rods and ipRGCs; Lucas et al., 2014). In the current study, we assessed whether the spectral outputs from a commercially available spectral watch (i.e. Actiwatch Spectrum) could be used to estimate photoreceptor excitations. Based on the color sensor spectral sensitivity functions from a previously published work, as well as from our measurements, we computed spectral outputs in the long-wavelength range (R), middle-wavelength range (G), short-wavelength range (B) and broadband range (W) under 52 CIE illuminants (25 daylight illuminants, 27 fluorescent lights). We also computed the photoreceptor excitations for each illuminant using human photoreceptor spectral sensitivity functions. Linear regression analyses indicated that the Actiwatch spectral outputs could predict photoreceptor excitations reliably, under the assumption of linear responses of the Actiwatch color sensors. In addition, R, G, B outputs could classify illuminant types (fluorescent versus daylight illuminants) satisfactorily. However, the assessment of actual Actiwatch recording under several testing light sources showed that the spectral outputs were subject to

  17. Circadian and light-driven regulation of rod dark adaptation.

    PubMed

    Xue, Yunlu; Shen, Susan Q; Corbo, Joseph C; Kefalov, Vladimir J

    2015-12-02

    Continuous visual perception and the dark adaptation of vertebrate photoreceptors after bright light exposure require recycling of their visual chromophore through a series of reactions in the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE visual cycle). Light-driven chromophore consumption by photoreceptors is greater in daytime vs. nighttime, suggesting that correspondingly higher activity of the visual cycle may be required. However, as rod photoreceptors are saturated in bright light, the continuous turnover of their chromophore by the visual cycle throughout the day would not contribute to vision. Whether the recycling of chromophore that drives rod dark adaptation is regulated by the circadian clock and light exposure is unknown. Here, we demonstrate that mouse rod dark adaptation is slower during the day or after light pre-exposure. This surprising daytime suppression of the RPE visual cycle was accompanied by light-driven reduction in expression of Rpe65, a key enzyme of the RPE visual cycle. Notably, only rods in melatonin-proficient mice were affected by this daily visual cycle modulation. Our results demonstrate that the circadian clock and light exposure regulate the recycling of chromophore in the RPE visual cycle. This daily melatonin-driven modulation of rod dark adaptation could potentially protect the retina from light-induced damage during the day.

  18. Genetic Dissection of Dual Roles for the Transcription Factor six7 in Photoreceptor Development and Patterning in Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Sotolongo-Lopez, Mailin; Alvarez-Delfin, Karen; Saade, Carole J.; Vera, Daniel L.; Fadool, James M.

    2016-01-01

    The visual system of a particular species is highly adapted to convey detailed ecological and behavioral information essential for survival. The consequences of structural mutations of opsins upon spectral sensitivity and environmental adaptation have been studied in great detail, but lacking is knowledge of the potential influence of alterations in gene regulatory networks upon the diversity of cone subtypes and the variation in the ratio of rods and cones observed in numerous diurnal and nocturnal species. Exploiting photoreceptor patterning in cone-dominated zebrafish, we uncovered two independent mechanisms by which the sine oculis homeobox homolog 7 (six7) regulates photoreceptor development. In a genetic screen, we isolated the lots-of-rods-junior (ljrp23ahub) mutation that resulted in an increased number and uniform distribution of rods in otherwise normal appearing larvae. Sequence analysis, genome editing using TALENs and knockdown strategies confirm ljrp23ahub as a hypomorphic allele of six7, a teleost orthologue of six3, with known roles in forebrain patterning and expression of opsins. Based on the lack of predicted protein-coding changes and a deletion of a conserved element upstream of the transcription start site, a cis-regulatory mutation is proposed as the basis of the reduced expression of six7 in ljrp23ahub. Comparison of the phenotypes of the hypomorphic and knock-out alleles provides evidence of two independent roles in photoreceptor development. EdU and PH3 labeling show that the increase in rod number is associated with extended mitosis of photoreceptor progenitors, and TUNEL suggests that the lack of green-sensitive cones is the result of cell death of the cone precursor. These data add six7 to the small but growing list of essential genes for specification and patterning of photoreceptors in non-mammalian vertebrates, and highlight alterations in transcriptional regulation as a potential source of photoreceptor variation across species

  19. Light Adaptation in the Ventral Photoreceptor of Limulus

    PubMed Central

    Srebro, Richard; Behbehani, Michael

    1974-01-01

    Light adaptation in both the ventral photoreceptor and the lateral eye photoreceptor is a complex process consisting of at least two phases. One phase, which we call the rapid phase of adaptation, occurs whenever there is temporal overlap of the discrete waves that compose a light response. The recovery from the rapid phase of adaptation follows an exponential time-course with a time constant of approximately 75 ms at 21°C. The rapid phase of adaptation occurs at light intensities barely above discrete wave threshold as well as at substantially higher light intensities with the same recovery time-course at all intensities. It occurs in voltage-clamped and unclamped photoreceptors. The kinetics of the rapid phase of adaptation is closely correlated to the photocurrent which appears to initiate it after a short delay. The rapid phase of adaptation is probably identical to what is called the "adapting bump" process. At light intensities greater than about 10 times discrete wave threshold another phase of light adaptation occurs. It develops slowly over a period of ½ s or so, and decays even more slowly over a period of several seconds. It is graded with light intensity and occurs in both voltage-clamped and unclamped photoreceptors. We call this the slow phase of light adaptation. PMID:4846765

  20. Human Cone Visual Pigment Deletions Spare Sufficient Photoreceptors to Warrant Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Cideciyan, Artur V.; Hufnagel, Robert B.; Carroll, Joseph; Sumaroka, Alexander; Luo, Xunda; Schwartz, Sharon B.; Dubra, Alfredo; Land, Megan; Michaelides, Michel; Gardner, Jessica C.; Hardcastle, Alison J.; Moore, Anthony T.; Sisk, Robert A.; Ahmed, Zubair M.; Kohl, Susanne

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Human X-linked blue-cone monochromacy (BCM), a disabling congenital visual disorder of cone photoreceptors, is a candidate disease for gene augmentation therapy. BCM is caused by either mutations in the red (OPN1LW) and green (OPN1MW) cone photoreceptor opsin gene array or large deletions encompassing portions of the gene array and upstream regulatory sequences that would predict a lack of red or green opsin expression. The fate of opsin-deficient cone cells is unknown. We know that rod opsin null mutant mice show rapid postnatal death of rod photoreceptors. Using in vivo histology with high-resolution retinal imaging, we studied a cohort of 20 BCM patients (age range 5–58) with large deletions in the red/green opsin gene array. Already in the first years of life, retinal structure was not normal: there was partial loss of photoreceptors across the central retina. Remaining cone cells had detectable outer segments that were abnormally shortened. Adaptive optics imaging confirmed the existence of inner segments at a spatial density greater than that expected for the residual blue cones. The evidence indicates that human cones in patients with deletions in the red/green opsin gene array can survive in reduced numbers with limited outer segment material, suggesting potential value of gene therapy for BCM. PMID:24067079

  1. Photoreceptor processes: some problems and perspectives.

    PubMed

    Goldsmith, T H

    1975-10-01

    Visual photoreceptors from both vertebrates and invertebrates are characterized by extensive elaboration of membrane which contains visual pigment (rhodopsin). Visual pigments in all phyla examined are chemically similar: the chromophore is 11-cis retinaldehyde attached by an aldimine linkage (Schiff base) to a membrane protein, opsin. The effect of light is to isomerize the chromophore to the all-trans configuration. Beyond these fundamental similarities, several specific areas are discussed in which variations and differences appear. (1) Light causes vertebrate visual pigments to bleach, liberating the chromophore. Most invertebrate visual pigments do not bleach in the light, but instead form a thermally stable metarhodopsin, with the chromophore in the all-trans configuration still attached to the opsin. (2) In the disk membranes of vertebrate rod and cone outer segments, the rhodopsin molecules are oriented with their chromophores nearly coplanar with the disks. Within this plane, however, both rotational and translational diffusion are possible. In the microvillar membranes of arthropod and cephalopod rhabdoms, on the other hand, the situation is less clear. There is evidence for some preferential orientation of chromophores that implies restrictions on Brownian rotation. (3) In the outer segments of vertebrate receptors, absorption of light by rhodopsin causes the plasma membrane to hyperpolarize due to a decrease in sodium conductance, possibly mediated by calcium ions. In most invertebrate photoreceptors, light causes a depolarization due to an increase in conductance, principally to sodium ions. A subsequent entry of calcium causes a partial repolarization of the membrane, due to a decrease in sodium conductance. (4) For vertebrate receptors, log threshold is directly proportional to the fraction of rhodopsin bleached (Dowling-Rushton relationship). The proportionality constant varies in different preparations from less than four to more than 30, and the

  2. Have We Achieved a Unified Model of Photoreceptor Cell Fate Specification in Vertebrates?

    PubMed Central

    Raymond, Pamela A.

    2008-01-01

    How does a retinal progenitor choose to differentiate as a rod or a cone and, if it becomes a cone, which one of their different subtypes? The mechanisms of photoreceptor cell fate specification and differentiation have been extensively investigated in a variety of animal model systems, including human and non-human primates, rodents (mice and rats), chickens, frogs (Xenopus) and fish. It appears timely to discuss whether it is possible to synthesize the resulting information into a unified model applicable to all vertebrates. In this review we focus on several widely used experimental animal model systems to highlight differences in photoreceptor properties among species, the diversity of developmental strategies and solutions that vertebrates use to create retinas with photoreceptors that are adapted to the visual needs of their species, and the limitations of the methods currently available for the investigation of photoreceptor cell fate specification. Based on these considerations, we conclude that we are not yet ready to construct a unified model of photoreceptor cell fate specification in the developing vertebrate retina. PMID:17466954

  3. The locations of mitochondria in mammalian photoreceptors: relation to retinal vasculature.

    PubMed

    Stone, Jonathan; van Driel, Diana; Valter, Krisztina; Rees, Sandra; Provis, Jan

    2008-01-16

    Adult mammalian photoreceptors are elongated cells, and their mitochondria are sequestered to the ends of the cell, to the inner segments and (in some species) to axon terminals in the outer plexiform layer (OPL). We hypothesised that mitochondria migrate to these locations towards sources of oxygen, from the choroid and (in some species) from the deep capillaries of the retinal circulation. Six mammalian species were surveyed, using electron and light microscopy, including immunohistochemistry for the mitochondrial enzyme cytochrome oxidase (CO). In all 6 species, mitochondria were absent from photoreceptor somas and were numerous in inner segments. Mitochondria were prominent in axon terminals in 3 species (mouse, rat, human) with a retinal circulation and were absent from those terminals in 3 species (wallaby, rat, guinea pig) with avascular retinas. Further, in a human developmental series, it was evident that mitochondria migrate within rods and cones, towards and eventually past the outer limiting membrane (OLM), into the inner segment. In Müller and RPE cells also, mitochondria concentrated at the external surface of the cells. Neurones located in the inner layers of avascular retinas have mitochondria, but their expression of CO is low. Mitochondrial locations in photoreceptors, Müller and RPE cells are economically explained as the result of migration within the cell towards sources of oxygen. In photoreceptors, this migration results in a separation of mitochondria from the nuclear genome; this separation may be a factor in the vulnerability of photoreceptors to mutations, toxins and environmental stresses, which other retinal neurones survive.

  4. Function of human pluripotent stem cell-derived photoreceptor progenitors in blind mice

    PubMed Central

    Barnea-Cramer, Alona O.; Wang, Wei; Lu, Shi-Jiang; Singh, Mandeep S.; Luo, Chenmei; Huo, Hongguang; McClements, Michelle E.; Barnard, Alun R.; MacLaren, Robert E.; Lanza, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Photoreceptor degeneration due to retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a primary cause of inherited retinal blindness. Photoreceptor cell-replacement may hold the potential for repair in a completely degenerate retina by reinstating light sensitive cells to form connections that relay information to downstream retinal layers. This study assessed the therapeutic potential of photoreceptor progenitors derived from human embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells (ESCs and iPSCs) using a protocol that is suitable for future clinical trials. ESCs and iPSCs were cultured in four specific stages under defined conditions, resulting in generation of a near-homogeneous population of photoreceptor-like progenitors. Following transplantation into mice with end-stage retinal degeneration, these cells differentiated into photoreceptors and formed a cell layer connected with host retinal neurons. Visual function was partially restored in treated animals, as evidenced by two visual behavioral tests. Furthermore, the magnitude of functional improvement was positively correlated with the number of engrafted cells. Similar efficacy was observed using either ESCs or iPSCs as source material. These data validate the potential of human pluripotent stem cells for photoreceptor replacement therapies aimed at photoreceptor regeneration in retinal disease. PMID:27405580

  5. Biosynthesis of Acetylcholine in Turtle Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Dominic M. K.

    1972-01-01

    For determination of possible neurotransmitters synthesized by photoreceptor cells, turtle retinas were dissociated into single cells with proteolytic enzymes. These cells were partially separated by velocity sedimentation to yield a fraction rich in photoreceptors. Individual photoreceptor cells were then sucked into a micropipette and incubated with labeled precursors of known or suspected neurotransmitters. After incubation, the radioactive products were analyzed by high-voltage electrophoresis. Of all the chemicals tested, turtle photoreceptor cells synthesized only acetylcholine, suggesting that these cells may be cholinergic. Images PMID:4505678

  6. Fundus Autofluorescence and Photoreceptor Cell Rosettes in Mouse Models

    PubMed Central

    Flynn, Erin; Ueda, Keiko; Auran, Emily; Sullivan, Jack M.; Sparrow, Janet R.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. This study was conducted to study correlations among fundus autofluorescence (AF), RPE lipofuscin accumulation, and photoreceptor cell degeneration and to investigate the structural basis of fundus AF spots. Methods. Fundus AF images (55° lens; 488-nm excitation) and spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) scans were acquired in pigmented Rdh8−/−/Abca4−/− mice (ages 1–9 months) with a confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope (cSLO). For quantitative fundus AF (qAF), gray levels (GLs) were calibrated to an internal fluorescence reference. Retinal bisretinoids were measured by quantitative HPLC. Histometric analysis of outer nuclear layer (ONL) thicknesses was performed, and cryostat sections of retina were examined by fluorescence microscopy. Results. Quantified A2E and qAF intensities increased until age 4 months in the Rdh8−/−/Abca4−/− mice. The A2E levels declined after 4 months of age, but qAF intensity values continued to rise. The decline in A2E levels in the Rdh8−/−/Abca4−/− mice paralleled reduced photoreceptor cell viability as reflected in ONL thinning. Hyperautofluorescent puncta in fundus AF images corresponded to photoreceptor cell rosettes in SD-OCT images and histological sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin. The inner segment/outer segment–containing core of the rosette emitted an autofluorescence detected by fluorescence microscopy. Conclusions. When neural retina is disordered, AF from photoreceptor cells can contribute to noninvasive fundus AF images. Hyperautofluorescent puncta in fundus AF images are attributable, in at least some cases, to photoreceptor cell rosettes. PMID:25015357

  7. Rhodopsin molecular contrast imaging by optical coherence tomography for functional assessment of photoreceptors (Conference Presentation)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nafra, Zahra; Liu, Tan; Jiao, Shuliang

    2016-03-01

    Rhodopsin, the light-sensing molecule in the outer segments of rod photoreceptors, is responsible for converting light into neuronal signals in a process known as phototransduction. Rhodopsin is thus a functional biomarker for rod photoreceptors. We developed a novel technology based on visible-light optical coherence tomography (VIS-OCT) for in vivo molecular imaging of rhodopsin. The depth resolution of OCT allows the visualization of the location where the change of optical absorption occurs and provides a potentially accurate assessment of rhodopsin content by segmentation of the image at the location. A broadband supercontinuum laser, whose filtered output was centered at 520 nm, was used as the illuminating light source. To test the capabilities of the system on rhodopsin mapping we imaged the retina of albino rats. The rats were dark adapted before imaging. An integrated near infrared OCT was used to guide the alignment in dark. VIS-OCT three-dimensional images were then acquired under dark- and light- adapted states sequentially. Rhodopsin distribution was calculated from the differential image. The rhodopsin distributions can be displayed in both en face view and depth-resolved cross-sectional image. Rhodopsin OCT can be used to quantitatively image rhodopsin distribution and thus assess the distribution of functional rod photoreceptors in the retina. Rhodopsin OCT can bring significant impact into ophthalmic clinics by providing a tool for the diagnosis and severity assessment of a variety of retinal conditions.

  8. 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.

  9. The evolution of early vertebrate photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Collin, Shaun P; Davies, Wayne L; Hart, Nathan S; Hunt, David M

    2009-10-12

    Meeting the challenge of sampling an ancient aquatic landscape by the early vertebrates was crucial to their survival and would establish a retinal bauplan to be used by all subsequent vertebrate descendents. Image-forming eyes were under tremendous selection pressure and the ability to identify suitable prey and detect potential predators was thought to be one of the major drivers of speciation in the Early Cambrian. Based on the fossil record, we know that hagfishes, lampreys, holocephalans, elasmobranchs and lungfishes occupy critical stages in vertebrate evolution, having remained relatively unchanged over hundreds of millions of years. Now using extant representatives of these 'living fossils', we are able to piece together the evolution of vertebrate photoreception. While photoreception in hagfishes appears to be based on light detection and controlling circadian rhythms, rather than image formation, the photoreceptors of lampreys fall into five distinct classes and represent a critical stage in the dichotomy of rods and cones. At least four types of retinal cones sample the visual environment in lampreys mediating photopic (and potentially colour) vision, a sampling strategy retained by lungfishes, some modern teleosts, reptiles and birds. Trichromacy is retained in cartilaginous fishes (at least in batoids and holocephalans), where it is predicted that true scotopic (dim light) vision evolved in the common ancestor of all living gnathostomes. The capacity to discriminate colour and balance the tradeoff between resolution and sensitivity in the early vertebrates was an important driver of eye evolution, where many of the ocular features evolved were retained as vertebrates progressed on to land.

  10. Gap Junctions between Photoreceptor Cells in the Vertebrate Retina

    PubMed Central

    Raviola, Elio; Gilula, Norton B.

    1973-01-01

    In the outer plexiform layer of the retina the synaptic endings of cone cells make specialized junctions with each other and with the endings of rod cells. The ultrastructure of these interreceptor junctions is described in retinas of monkeys, rabbits, and turtles, in thin sections of embedded specimens and by the freeze-fracturing technique. Cone-to-rod junctions are ribbon-like areas of close membrane approximation. On either side of the narrowing of the intercellular space, the junctional membranes contain a row of particles located on the fracture face A (cytoplasmic leaflet), while the complementary element, a row of single depressions, is located on fracture face B. The particle rows are surrounded by a membrane region that is devoid of particulate inclusions and bears an adherent layer of dense cytoplasmic material. Cone-to-cone junctions in some places are identical to cone-to-rod junctions, while in other places they closely resemble typical gap junctions (nexus). Interreceptor junctions, therefore, represent a morphological variant of the gap junction, and probably mediate electrotonic coupling between neighboring photoreceptor cells. Images PMID:4198274

  11. [Photoreceptors and visual pigments in three species of newts].

    PubMed

    Koremiak, D A; Govardovskiĭ, V I

    2013-01-01

    Photoreceptor complement and retinal visual pigments in three newt (Caudata, Salamandridae, Pleurodelinae) species (Pleurodeles waltl, Lissotriton (Triturus) vulgaris and Cynops orientalis) were studied by light mucroscopy and microspectrophotometry. Retinas of all three species contain "red" (rhodopsin/porphyropsin) rods, large and small single cones, and double cones. Large single cones and both components of double cones contain red-sensitive (presumably LWS) visual pigment whose absorbance spectrum peaks between 593 and 611 nm. Small single cones are either blue- (SWS2, maximum absorbance between 470 and 489 nm) or UV-sensitive (SWS1, maximum absorbance between 340 and 359 nm). Chromophore composition of visual pigments (A1 vs. A2) was assessed both from template fitting of absorption spectra and by the method of selective bleaching. All pigments contained a mixture of A1 (11-cis retinal) and A2 (11-cis-3,4-dehydroretinal) chromophore in the proportion depending on the species and cell type. In all cases, A2 was dominant. However, in C. orientalis rods the fraction of A1 could reach 45%, while in P. waltl and L. vulgaris cones it did not exceed 5%. Remarkably, the absorbance of the newt blue-sensitive visual pigment was shifted by up to 45 nm toward the longer wavelength, as compared with all other amphibian SWS2-pigments. We found no "green" rods typical of retinas of Anura and some Caudata (ambystomas) in the three newt species studied. PMID:24459859

  12. [Photoreceptors and visual pigments in three species of newts].

    PubMed

    Koremiak, D A; Govardovskiĭ, V I

    2013-01-01

    Photoreceptor complement and retinal visual pigments in three newt (Caudata, Salamandridae, Pleurodelinae) species (Pleurodeles waltl, Lissotriton (Triturus) vulgaris and Cynops orientalis) were studied by light mucroscopy and microspectrophotometry. Retinas of all three species contain "red" (rhodopsin/porphyropsin) rods, large and small single cones, and double cones. Large single cones and both components of double cones contain red-sensitive (presumably LWS) visual pigment whose absorbance spectrum peaks between 593 and 611 nm. Small single cones are either blue- (SWS2, maximum absorbance between 470 and 489 nm) or UV-sensitive (SWS1, maximum absorbance between 340 and 359 nm). Chromophore composition of visual pigments (A1 vs. A2) was assessed both from template fitting of absorption spectra and by the method of selective bleaching. All pigments contained a mixture of A1 (11-cis retinal) and A2 (11-cis-3,4-dehydroretinal) chromophore in the proportion depending on the species and cell type. In all cases, A2 was dominant. However, in C. orientalis rods the fraction of A1 could reach 45%, while in P. waltl and L. vulgaris cones it did not exceed 5%. Remarkably, the absorbance of the newt blue-sensitive visual pigment was shifted by up to 45 nm toward the longer wavelength, as compared with all other amphibian SWS2-pigments. We found no "green" rods typical of retinas of Anura and some Caudata (ambystomas) in the three newt species studied.

  13. Photoreceptor cell fate specification in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Brzezinski, Joseph A.; Reh, Thomas A.

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptors – the light-sensitive cells in the vertebrate retina – have been extremely well-characterized with regards to their biochemistry, cell biology and physiology. They therefore provide an excellent model for exploring the factors and mechanisms that drive neural progenitors into a differentiated cell fate in the nervous system. As a result, great progress in understanding the transcriptional network that controls photoreceptor specification and differentiation has been made over the last 20 years. This progress has also enabled the production of photoreceptors from pluripotent stem cells, thereby aiding the development of regenerative medical approaches to eye disease. In this Review, we outline the signaling and transcription factors that drive vertebrate photoreceptor development and discuss how these function together in gene regulatory networks to control photoreceptor cell fate specification. PMID:26443631

  14. Quantifying the metabolic contribution to photoreceptor death in retinitis pigmentosa via a mathematical model.

    PubMed

    Camacho, Erika T; Punzo, Claudio; Wirkus, Stephen A

    2016-11-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a family of inherited retinal degenerative diseases that leads to blindness. In many cases the disease-causing allele encodes for a gene exclusively expressed in the night active rod photoreceptors. However, because rod death always leads to cone death affected individuals eventually lose their sight. Many theories have been proposed to explain the secondary loss of cones in RP; however, most fail to fully explain the different pathological transition stages seen in humans. Incorporating experimental data of rod and cone death kinetics from two mouse models of RP, we use a mathematical model to investigate the interplay and role of energy consumption and uptake of the photoreceptors as well as nutrient availability supplied through the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) throughout the progression of RP. Our data driven mathematical model predicts that the system requires a total reduction of approximately 27-31% in nutrients available to result in the complete demise of all cones. Simulations utilizing retinal degeneration 1 (rd1) mouse cell count data in which cone death was delayed by altering cell metabolism in cones show that preventing a 1-2% decrease in nutrients available can permanently halt cone death even when 90% have already died. Our results also indicate that the ratio of energy consumption to uptake of cones, Dc, is mainly disrupted during the death wave of the rods with negligible changes thereafter and that the subsequent nutrient decrease is mainly responsible for the demise of the cones. The change in this ratio Dc highlights the compensation that the cones must undergo during rod death to meet the high metabolic demands of the entire photoreceptor population. Global sensitivity analysis confirms the results and suggests areas of focus for halting RP, even at later stages of the disease, through feasible therapeutic interventions.

  15. Retbindin Is an Extracellular Riboflavin-binding Protein Found at the Photoreceptor/Retinal Pigment Epithelium Interface*

    PubMed Central

    Kelley, Ryan A.; Al-Ubaidi, Muayyad R.; Naash, Muna I.

    2015-01-01

    Retbindin is a novel retina-specific protein of unknown function. In this study, we have used various approaches to evaluate protein expression, localization, biochemical properties, and function. We find that retbindin is secreted by the rod photoreceptors into the inter-photoreceptor matrix where it is maintained via electrostatic forces. Retbindin is predominantly localized at the interface between photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium microvilli, a region critical for retinal function and homeostasis. Interestingly, although it is associated with photoreceptor outer segments, retbindin's expression is not dependent on their presence. In vitro, retbindin is capable of binding riboflavin, thus implicating the protein as a metabolite carrier between the retina and the retinal pigment epithelium. Altogether, our data show that retbindin is a novel photoreceptor-specific protein with a unique localization and function. We hypothesize that retbindin is an excellent candidate for binding retinal flavins and possibly participating in their transport from the extracellular space to the photoreceptors. Further investigations are warranted to determine the exact function of retbindin in retinal homeostasis and disease. PMID:25542898

  16. DNA methylation and differential gene regulation in photoreceptor cell death

    PubMed Central

    Farinelli, P; Perera, A; Arango-Gonzalez, B; Trifunovic, D; Wagner, M; Carell, T; Biel, M; Zrenner, E; Michalakis, S; Paquet-Durand, F; Ekström, P A R

    2014-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) defines a group of inherited degenerative retinal diseases causing progressive loss of photoreceptors. To this day, RP is still untreatable and rational treatment development will require a thorough understanding of the underlying cell death mechanisms. Methylation of the DNA base cytosine by DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) is an important epigenetic factor regulating gene expression, cell differentiation, cell death, and survival. Previous studies suggested an involvement of epigenetic mechanisms in RP, and in this study, increased cytosine methylation was detected in dying photoreceptors in the rd1, rd2, P23H, and S334ter rodent models for RP. Ultrastructural analysis of photoreceptor nuclear morphology in the rd1 mouse model for RP revealed a severely altered chromatin structure during retinal degeneration that coincided with an increased expression of the DNMT isozyme DNMT3a. To identify disease-specific differentially methylated DNA regions (DMRs) on a genomic level, we immunoprecipitated methylated DNA fragments and subsequently analyzed them with a targeted microarray. Genome-wide comparison of DMRs between rd1 and wild-type retina revealed hypermethylation of genes involved in cell death and survival as well as cell morphology and nervous system development. When correlating DMRs with gene expression data, we found that hypermethylation occurred alongside transcriptional repression. Consistently, motif analysis showed that binding sites of several important transcription factors for retinal physiology were hypermethylated in the mutant model, which also correlated with transcriptional silencing of their respective target genes. Finally, inhibition of DNMTs in rd1 organotypic retinal explants using decitabine resulted in a substantial reduction of photoreceptor cell death, suggesting inhibition of DNA methylation as a potential novel treatment in RP. PMID:25476906

  17. Simple photoreceptors in Limulus polyphemus.

    PubMed

    Millecchia, R; Bradbury, J; Mauro, A

    1966-12-01

    The "olfactory nerve," the endoparietal eye, and the rudimentary lateral eyes of Limulus (polyphemus) contain simple photoreceptor cells that duplicate many of the electrical responses of the retinular cells of the lateral eye; the responses are a receptor potential consisting of aninitial transient phase and a subsequent steady phase,low-amplitude fluctuations, and a small locally regenerative response to pulses of both light and current. Photic stimulation does not induce conducted action potentials, but does increase the membrane conductance. The receptor potentialrequires the presence of sodium ions in the external medium. Measurements of action and absorption spectra indicate a photopigment whose maximum absorption is of light with wavelength of 535 nanometers. The functional significance of these cells has not been ascertained. PMID:5921383

  18. Rod phototransduction determines the trade-off of temporal integration and speed of vision in dark-adapted toads.

    PubMed

    Haldin, Charlotte; Nymark, Soile; Aho, Ann-Christine; Koskelainen, Ari; Donner, Kristian

    2009-05-01

    Human vision is approximately 10 times less sensitive than toad vision on a cool night. Here, we investigate (1) how far differences in the capacity for temporal integration underlie such differences in sensitivity and (2) whether the response kinetics of the rod photoreceptors can explain temporal integration at the behavioral level. The toad was studied as a model that allows experimentation at different body temperatures. Sensitivity, integration time, and temporal accuracy of vision were measured psychophysically by recording snapping at worm dummies moving at different velocities. Rod photoresponses were studied by ERG recording across the isolated retina. In both types of experiments, the general timescale of vision was varied by using two temperatures, 15 and 25 degrees C. Behavioral integration times were 4.3 s at 15 degrees C and 0.9 s at 25 degrees C, and rod integration times were 4.2-4.3 s at 15 degrees C and 1.0-1.3 s at 25 degrees C. Maximal behavioral sensitivity was fivefold lower at 25 degrees C than at 15 degrees C, which can be accounted for by inability of the "warm" toads to integrate light over longer times than the rods. However, the long integration time at 15 degrees C, allowing high sensitivity, degraded the accuracy of snapping toward quickly moving worms. We conclude that temporal integration explains a considerable part of all variation in absolute visual sensitivity. The strong correlation between rods and behavior suggests that the integration time of dark-adapted vision is set by rod phototransduction at the input to the visual system. This implies that there is an inexorable trade-off between temporal integration and resolution.

  19. Progenitor cells of the rod-free area centralis originate in the anterior dorsal optic vesicle

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Nervous system development is dependent on early regional specification to create functionally distinct tissues within an initially undifferentiated zone. Within the retina, photoreceptors are topographically organized with rod free area centrales faithfully generated at the centre of gaze. How does the developing eye regulate this placement? Conventional wisdom indicates that the distal tip of the growing optic vesicle (OV) gives rise to the area centralis/fovea. Ectopic expression and ablation studies do not fully support this view, creating a controversy as to the origin of this region. In this study, the lineage of cells in the chicken OV was traced using DiI. The location of labelled cells was mapped onto the retina in relation to the rod-free zone at embryonic (E) 7 and E17.5. The ability to regenerate a rod free area after OV ablation was determined in conjunction with lineage tracing. Results Anterior OV gave rise to cells in nasal retina and posterior OV became temporal retina. The OV distal tip gave rise to cells above the optic nerve head. A dorsal and anterior region of the OV correlated with cells in the developing rod free area centralis. Only ablations including the dorsal anterior region gave rise to a retina lacking a rod free zone. DiI application after ablation indicated that cells movements were greater along the anterior/posterior axis compared with the dorsal/ventral axis. Conclusion Our data support the idea that the chicken rod free area centralis originates from cells located near, but not at the distal tip of the developing OV. Therefore, the hypothesis that the area centralis is derived from cells at the distal tip of the OV is not supported; rather, a region anterior and dorsal to the distal tip gives rise to the rod free region. When compared with other studies of retinal development, our results are supported on molecular, morphological and functional levels. Our data will lead to a better understanding of the mechanisms

  20. Abnormal photoreceptor outer segment development and early retinal degeneration in kif3a mutant zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Raghupathy, Rakesh K; Zhang, Xun; Alhasani, Reem H; Zhou, Xinzhi; Mullin, Margaret; Reilly, James; Li, Wenchang; Liu, Mugen; Shu, Xinhua

    2016-08-01

    Photoreceptors are highly specialized sensory neurons that possess a modified primary cilium called the outer segment. Photoreceptor outer segment formation and maintenance require highly active protein transport via a process known as intraflagellar transport. Anterograde transport in outer segments is powered by the heterotrimeric kinesin II and coordinated by intraflagellar transport proteins. Here, we describe a new zebrafish model carrying a nonsense mutation in the kinesin II family member 3A (kif3a) gene. Kif3a mutant zebrafish exhibited curved body axes and kidney cysts. Outer segments were not formed in most parts of the mutant retina, and rhodopsin was mislocalized, suggesting KIF3A has a role in rhodopsin trafficking. Both rod and cone photoreceptors degenerated rapidly between 4 and 9 days post fertilization, and electroretinography response was not detected in 7 days post fertilization mutant larvae. Loss of KIF3A in zebrafish also resulted in an intracellular transport defect affecting anterograde but not retrograde transport of organelles. Our results indicate KIF3A plays a conserved role in photoreceptor outer segment formation and intracellular transport. PMID:27470972

  1. Association of Shank 1A Scaffolding Protein with Cone Photoreceptor Terminals in the Mammalian Retina

    PubMed Central

    Stella, Salvatore L.; Vila, Alejandro; Hung, Albert Y.; Rome, Michael E.; Huynh, Uyenchi; Sheng, Morgan; Kreienkamp, Hans-Juergen; Brecha, Nicholas C.

    2012-01-01

    Photoreceptor terminals contain post-synaptic density (PSD) proteins e.g., PSD-95/PSD-93, but their role at photoreceptor synapses is not known. PSDs are generally restricted to post-synaptic boutons in central neurons and form scaffolding with multiple proteins that have structural and functional roles in neuronal signaling. The Shank family of proteins (Shank 1–3) functions as putative anchoring proteins for PSDs and is involved in the organization of cytoskeletal/signaling complexes in neurons. Specifically, Shank 1 is restricted to neurons and interacts with both receptors and signaling molecules at central neurons to regulate plasticity. However, it is not known whether Shank 1 is expressed at photoreceptor terminals. In this study we have investigated Shank 1A localization in the outer retina at photoreceptor terminals. We find that Shank 1A is expressed presynaptically in cone pedicles, but not rod spherules, and it is absent from mice in which the Shank 1 gene is deleted. Shank 1A co-localizes with PSD-95, peanut agglutinin, a marker of cone terminals, and glycogen phosphorylase, a cone specific marker. These findings provide convincing evidence for Shank 1A expression in both the inner and outer plexiform layers, and indicate a potential role for PSD-95/Shank 1 complexes at cone synapses in the outer retina. PMID:22984429

  2. Förster resonance energy transfer as a tool to study photoreceptor biology.

    PubMed

    Hovan, Stephanie C; Howell, Scott; Park, Paul S-H

    2010-01-01

    Vision is initiated in photoreceptor cells of the retina by a set of biochemical events called phototransduction. These events occur via coordinated dynamic processes that include changes in secondary messenger concentrations, conformational changes and post-translational modifications of signaling proteins, and protein-protein interactions between signaling partners. A complete description of the orchestration of these dynamic processes is still unavailable. Described in this work is the first step in the development of tools combining fluorescent protein technology, Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), and transgenic animals that have the potential to reveal important molecular insights about the dynamic processes occurring in photoreceptor cells. We characterize the fluorescent proteins SCFP3A and SYFP2 for use as a donor-acceptor pair in FRET assays, which will facilitate the visualization of dynamic processes in living cells. We also demonstrate the targeted expression of these fluorescent proteins to the rod photoreceptor cells of Xenopus laevis, and describe a general method for detecting FRET in these cells. The general approaches described here can address numerous types of questions related to phototransduction and photoreceptor biology by providing a platform to visualize dynamic processes in molecular detail within a native context.

  3. Förster resonance energy transfer as a tool to study photoreceptor biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hovan, Stephanie C.; Howell, Scott; Park, Paul S.-H.

    2010-11-01

    Vision is initiated in photoreceptor cells of the retina by a set of biochemical events called phototransduction. These events occur via coordinated dynamic processes that include changes in secondary messenger concentrations, conformational changes and post-translational modifications of signaling proteins, and protein-protein interactions between signaling partners. A complete description of the orchestration of these dynamic processes is still unavailable. Described in this work is the first step in the development of tools combining fluorescent protein technology, Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), and transgenic animals that have the potential to reveal important molecular insights about the dynamic processes occurring in photoreceptor cells. We characterize the fluorescent proteins SCFP3A and SYFP2 for use as a donor-acceptor pair in FRET assays, which will facilitate the visualization of dynamic processes in living cells. We also demonstrate the targeted expression of these fluorescent proteins to the rod photoreceptor cells of Xenopus laevis, and describe a general method for detecting FRET in these cells. The general approaches described here can address numerous types of questions related to phototransduction and photoreceptor biology by providing a platform to visualize dynamic processes in molecular detail within a native context.

  4. RP cone-rod degeneration.

    PubMed Central

    Heckenlively, J R

    1987-01-01

    A group of patients with progressive retinal degeneration and visual field loss, who meet the basic definition of RP were investigated to better define the relationship of the findings on the ERG with clinical characteristics such as visual field size, presence or absence of scotomata or pseudo-altitudinal defects on visual field, amount of night blindness; and presence or absence of macular or optic nerve changes. These studies suggest that cone-rod degeneration patients of the RP type go through the following stages; early, the ERG has a definite cone-rod pattern where the rod ERG is larger than the cone ERG while both are abnormal. As the disease advances, there is more of a reduction in the scotopic ERG such that both the rod and cone ERGs become nearly equal. As the disease further progresses the ERG becomes non-recordable on single-flash technique, but there is good residual rod function and the final rod threshold remains good until the visual field is reduced, typically less than 10 degrees with the IV-4 isopter. Finally with advanced disease the patient becomes night blind and generally becomes very difficult to distinguished from patients who have advanced rod-cone degeneration. While it may seem logical to find that visual field size correlates with various ERG parameters; this has not been as consistent a finding in patients with rod-cone degeneration in the author's experience. The analysis shows several new pieces of information about visual field changes in cone-rod degeneration; enlarged blind spots are seen earlier in cases which have recordable cone-rod patterns (group I), and pseudo-altitudinal changes are more likely to occur in autosomal recessive patients. Patients with macular lesions and central scotomata had larger amplitudes than patients with normal appearing maculae and no central scotomata. Patients with temporal optic atrophy had an earlier onset of symptoms and significant correlation with both photopic a- and b-waves and bright flash

  5. Redistribution of insoluble interphotoreceptor matrix components during photoreceptor differentiation in the mouse retina.

    PubMed

    Mieziewska, K; Szél, A; Van Veen, T; Aguirre, G D; Philp, N

    1994-07-01

    The development of the nervous system is largely influenced by the extracellular matrix (ECM). In the neural retina, the photoreceptors are surrounded by a unique ECM, the interphotoreceptor matrix (IPM). The IPM plays a central and possibly crucial role in the development, maintenance and specific function of the photoreceptors. Therefore, the characterization of IPM components is necessary to understand the mechanisms regulating photoreceptor differentiation. The IPM in the mouse retina was examined during photoreceptor morphogenesis with the monoclonal antibody (MAb) F22, which recognizes a 250 kDa component of the interphotoreceptor matrix. The binding pattern of MAb F22 revealed a striking redistribution in the expression of the 250 kDa F22 antigen in late stage of postnatal photoreceptor differentiation in the mouse retina. The F22 staining was detectable in the IPM around the inner segments on the third postnatal day (P3). The MAb F22 initially labeled the region around inner segments, but as the outer segments elongated, the F22 distribution became concentrated to the matrix around the rod and cone outer segments until P16-17. At P17, the F22 label around rods began to disappear, while the label around cones became more defined. The shift in label distribution was largely completed by P20. Residual rod-associated label disappeared within a few days. In the adult animal, the F22 antibody labeled the cone-associated matrix only, and this labeling pattern remained stationary. The change in the distribution of MAb F22 demonstrated by immunolabeling was not accompanied by changes in the size of the molecule; F22 antigen isolated from the IPM of P13-15, and from adult IPM migrated with the same molecular weight on SDS gels. The distribution of MAb F22 was compared to that of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans which are abundant in the IPM. The labeling patterns of MAbs CS-56, C6-S and C4-S were distinct from that of MAb F22. A general decrease of the label

  6. Cone-like rectification properties of cGMP-gated channels in transmutated retinal photoreceptors of nocturnal geckoes.

    PubMed

    Vellani, Vittorio; Giacomoni, Chiara

    2014-01-01

    Photoreceptors of nocturnal geckoes are scotopic, with rod-shaped outer segments, and sensitivities to light similar to the one of retinal rods from other species of lower vertebrates. However, these cells are not rods, but they originated from cones of ancestral diurnal geckoes with pure-cone retinas, after being forced to adapt to a nocturnal behavior. Several interesting adaptations of these rod-like cones have been studied to date; molecular biology and functional studies confirmed that several proteins of the phototransductive cascade display structural and functional properties that indicate their origin from cones rather than from rods. In this paper, we investigate, with whole cell voltage clamp in the photoreceptor detached outer segment preparation, the voltage rectification properties of cGMP-gated channels in three species, Gekko gecko, Tarentola mauritanica, and Hemidactylus frenatus. We show that the current-voltage properties in the physiological voltage range are reminiscent of the ones of cGMP-gated channels from cones rather than from rods of other cold-blooded vertebrates. The origin and the relevance of the mechanisms investigated are discussed. PMID:25506076

  7. Cone-Like Rectification Properties of cGMP-Gated Channels in Transmutated Retinal Photoreceptors of Nocturnal Geckoes

    PubMed Central

    Giacomoni, Chiara

    2014-01-01

    Photoreceptors of nocturnal geckoes are scotopic, with rod-shaped outer segments, and sensitivities to light similar to the one of retinal rods from other species of lower vertebrates. However, these cells are not rods, but they originated from cones of ancestral diurnal geckoes with pure-cone retinas, after being forced to adapt to a nocturnal behavior. Several interesting adaptations of these rod-like cones have been studied to date; molecular biology and functional studies confirmed that several proteins of the phototransductive cascade display structural and functional properties that indicate their origin from cones rather than from rods. In this paper, we investigate, with whole cell voltage clamp in the photoreceptor detached outer segment preparation, the voltage rectification properties of cGMP-gated channels in three species, Gekko gecko, Tarentola mauritanica, and Hemidactylus frenatus. We show that the current-voltage properties in the physiological voltage range are reminiscent of the ones of cGMP-gated channels from cones rather than from rods of other cold-blooded vertebrates. The origin and the relevance of the mechanisms investigated are discussed. PMID:25506076

  8. Raman Spectroscopic Imaging of Cholesterol and Docosahexaenoic Acid Distribution in the Retinal Rod Outer Segment

    PubMed Central

    Schultz, Zachary D.

    2011-01-01

    Raman vibrational spectroscopic imaging was performed on retinal rod cells isolated from bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana). The Raman spectra enable determination of the lipid and protein rich rod outer segment (ROS) from the nucleus and inner segment of the cell. Peak fitting analysis of spectra obtained from individual rod photoreceptor cells show characteristic vibrational modes that can be associated with cholesterol and docosahexaenoic acid containing lipids. These results provide direct observations of biomolecular gradients in the rod photoreceptor cells, which, thus far, have been based on indirect detergent extracts and histochemical analysis with indicators such as filipin. The detected biomolecules are associated with regulation of the integral membrane protein rhodopsin, and methods capable direct observation of these biomolecules offer new routes to exploring their role in the regulation of cellular processes. PMID:21799539

  9. Damage to the photoreceptor cells of the rabbit retina from 56Fe ions: effect of age at exposure, 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, G. R.; Lett, J. T.; Chatterjee, A. (Principal Investigator)

    1996-01-01

    Optic and proximate tissues of New Zealand white (NZW) rabbits at ages (approximately 3.5 years) near the middle of their median lifespan (5-7 years) were given 0.5-3.5 Gy of 465 MeV u-1 56Fe ions in the Bragg plateau region of energy deposition at a linear energy transfer (LET infinity) of 220 +/- 31 keV micrometer-1. Dose-dependent losses of retinal photoreceptor cells (rods) occurred until 1-2 years after irradiation, the period of this interim report. Similar cumulative losses of photoreceptor cells were seen during the period 1-2 years post-irradiation for rabbits given comparable exposures when young (6-9 weeks old). Since losses of photoreceptor cells at early times had not been determined previously, the current experiment, which was designed to simulate the responses of mature astronauts, redressed that deficiency.

  10. Damage to the photoreceptor cells of the rabbit retina from 56Fe ions: effect of age at exposure, 1.

    PubMed

    Williams, G R; Lett, J T

    1996-01-01

    Optic and proximate tissues of New Zealand white (NZW) rabbits at ages (approximately 3.5 years) near the middle of their median lifespan (5-7 years) were given 0.5-3.5 Gy of 465 MeV u-1 56Fe ions in the Bragg plateau region of energy deposition at a linear energy transfer (LET infinity) of 220 +/- 31 keV micrometer-1. Dose-dependent losses of retinal photoreceptor cells (rods) occurred until 1-2 years after irradiation, the period of this interim report. Similar cumulative losses of photoreceptor cells were seen during the period 1-2 years post-irradiation for rabbits given comparable exposures when young (6-9 weeks old). Since losses of photoreceptor cells at early times had not been determined previously, the current experiment, which was designed to simulate the responses of mature astronauts, redressed that deficiency. PMID:11538988

  11. Rod transduction parameters from the a wave of local receptor populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nusinowitz, Steven; Hood, Donald C.; Birch, David G.

    1995-10-01

    The analysis of electroretinogram a waves from locally stimulated populations of rods is complicated by the presence of scattered light within the eye. Scattered-light and cone contributions can be assessed after brief flashes of light designed to saturate only rods in the locally stimulated area. Subtracting the scattered-light and the cone responses from the local electroretinogram gives a pure rod a wave that can be fitted with models of photoreceptor activity. We demonstrate the feasibility of this technique by recording local rod a waves from a group of five normal subjects and by fitting the a waves with the rod model to derive transduction parameters. The local rod a waves are compared with expected responses derived from simulations in which the response of the entire retina to heterogeneous illumination is mimicked. electroretinography, rods, scattered light.

  12. Photoreceptor Sensory Cilium: Traversing the Ciliary Gate.

    PubMed

    Khanna, Hemant

    2015-01-01

    Cilia are antenna-like extensions of the plasma membrane found in nearly all cell types. In the retina of the eye, photoreceptors develop unique sensory cilia. Not much was known about the mechanisms underlying the formation and function of photoreceptor cilia, largely because of technical limitations and the specific structural and functional modifications that cannot be modeled in vitro. With recent advances in microscopy techniques and molecular and biochemical approaches, we are now beginning to understand the molecular basis of photoreceptor ciliary architecture, ciliary function and its involvement in human diseases. Here, I will discuss the studies that have revealed new knowledge of how photoreceptor cilia regulate their identity and function while coping with high metabolic and trafficking demands associated with processing light signal. PMID:26501325

  13. Dendrites of rod bipolar cells sprout in normal aging retina

    PubMed Central

    Liets, Lauren C.; Eliasieh, Kasra; van der List, Deborah A.; Chalupa, Leo M.

    2006-01-01

    The aging nervous system is known to manifest a variety of degenerative and regressive events. Here we report the unexpected growth of dendrites in the retinas of normal old mice. The dendrites of many rod bipolar cells in aging mice were observed to extend well beyond their normal strata within the outer plexiform layer to innervate the outer nuclear layer where they appeared to form contacts with the spherules of rod photoreceptors. Such dendritic sprouting increased with age and was evident at all retinal eccentricities. These results provide evidence of retinal plasticity associated with normal aging. PMID:16880381

  14. Primate Short-Wavelength Cones Share Molecular Markers with Rods

    PubMed Central

    Craft, Cheryl M.; Huang, Jing; Possin, Daniel E.; Hendrickson, Anita

    2015-01-01

    Macaca, Callithrix jacchus marmoset monkey, Pan troglodytes chim- panzee and human retinas were examined to define if short wavelength (S) cones share molecular markers with L&M cone or rod photoreceptors. S cones showed consistent differences in their immunohistochemical staining and expression levels compared to L&M cones for “rod” Arrestin1 (S-Antigen), “cone” Arrestin4, cone alpha transducin, and Calbindin. Our data verify a similar pattern of expression in these primate retinas and provide clues to the structural divergence of rods and S cones versus L&M cones, suggesting S cone retinal function is “intermediate” between them. PMID:24664680

  15. Light-Dependent Phosphorylation of Bardet Biedl Syndrome 5 in Photoreceptor Cells Modulates its Interaction with Arrestin1

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Tyler S.; Spitzbarth, Benjamin; Li, Jian; Dugger, Donald R.; Stern-Schneider, Gabi; Sehn, Elisabeth; Bolch, Susan N.; McDowell, J. Hugh; Tipton, Jeremiah; Wolfrum, Uwe; Smith, W. Clay

    2013-01-01

    Arrestins are dynamic proteins which move between cell compartments triggered by stimulation of G-protein-coupled receptors. Even more dynamically in vertebrate photoreceptors, arrestin1 (Arr1) moves between the inner and outer segments according to the lighting conditions. Previous studies have shown that the light-driven translocation of Arr1 in rod photoreceptors is initiated by rhodopsin through a phospholipase C/protein kinase C (PKC) signaling cascade. The purpose of this study is to identify the PKC substrate that regulates the translocation of Arr1. Mass spectrometry was used to identify the primary phosphorylated proteins in extracts prepared from PKC-stimulated mouse eye cups, confirming the finding with in vitro phosphorylation assays. Our results show that BBS5 is the principal protein phosphorylated either by phorbol ester stimulation or by light stimulation of PKC. Via immunoprecipitation of BBS5 in rod outer segments, Arr1 was pulled down; phosphorylation of BBS5 reduced this co-precipitation of Arr1. Immunofluorescence and immunoelectron microscopy showed that BBS5 principally localizes along the axonemes of rods and cones, but also in photoreceptor inner segments, and synaptic regions. Our principal findings in this study are three-fold. First, we demonstrate that BBS5 is post-translationally regulated by phosphorylation via PKC, an event that is triggered by light in photoreceptor cells. Second, we find a direct interaction between BBS5 and Arr1, an interaction that is modulated by phosphorylation of BBS5. Finally, we show that BBS5 is distributed along the photoreceptor axoneme, co-localizing with Arr1 in the dark. These findings suggest a role for BBS5 in regulating light-dependent translocation of Arr1 and a model describing its role in Arr1 translocation is proposed. PMID:23817741

  16. Bicarbonate Modulates Photoreceptor Guanylate Cyclase (ROS-GC) Catalytic Activity.

    PubMed

    Duda, Teresa; Wen, Xiao-Hong; Isayama, Tomoki; Sharma, Rameshwar K; Makino, Clint L

    2015-04-24

    By generating the second messenger cGMP in retinal rods and cones, ROS-GC plays a central role in visual transduction. Guanylate cyclase-activating proteins (GCAPs) link cGMP synthesis to the light-induced fall in [Ca(2+)]i to help set absolute sensitivity and assure prompt recovery of the response to light. The present report discloses a surprising feature of this system: ROS-GC is a sensor of bicarbonate. Recombinant ROS-GCs synthesized cGMP from GTP at faster rates in the presence of bicarbonate with an ED50 of 27 mM for ROS-GC1 and 39 mM for ROS-GC2. The effect required neither Ca(2+) nor use of the GCAPs domains; however, stimulation of ROS-GC1 was more powerful in the presence of GCAP1 or GCAP2 at low [Ca(2+)]. When applied to retinal photoreceptors, bicarbonate enhanced the circulating current, decreased sensitivity to flashes, and accelerated flash response kinetics. Bicarbonate was effective when applied either to the outer or inner segment of red-sensitive cones. In contrast, bicarbonate exerted an effect when applied to the inner segment of rods but had little efficacy when applied to the outer segment. The findings define a new regulatory mechanism of the ROS-GC system that affects visual transduction and is likely to affect the course of retinal diseases caused by cGMP toxicity. PMID:25767116

  17. Orientation behavior of retinal photoreceptors in alternating electric fields.

    PubMed

    Radu, M; Ionescu, M; Irimescu, N; Iliescu, K; Pologea-Moraru, R; Kovacs, E

    2005-11-01

    In alternating electric (AC) fields, particles experience polarizing effects that induce dipoles that orient elongated specimens either parallel or perpendicular to the field lines. In this work we studied the behavior of photoreceptor cells' rod outer segments (ROS) in AC fields of different frequencies. We showed that at low frequencies, ROS orient parallel to the field, whereas at higher frequencies they orient perpendicular to the field lines (in the frequency range from 100 Hz to 10 MHz). We found this behavior to be dependent on the physiological state of cells (due to modifications in their electrical properties). To simulate cell damage, the membrane conductivity was changed by treating the cell with gramicidin A, which resulted in a decrease of cytosol conductivity and, consequently, in a change of the orientation behavior of the treated cells. The change of cell orientation with cytosol conductivity is rather sharp, suggesting the potential of the method for accurate evaluation of the cell physiological status. We modeled the interaction between ROS and AC fields approximating the rod cell by a prolate spheroid with a very long axis. The internal compartment of the ellipsoid was considered to be filled with an inhomogeneous medium consisting of alternating layers of membrane and cytoplasm as media modeling the disks. This theoretical model proved to be in good agreement with the experimental results and enabled the derivation (by fitting with the experimental results) of the membrane and cytosol parameters for normal and damaged cells.

  18. In vitro characterization of micropatterned PLGA-PHBV8 blend films as temporary scaffolds for photoreceptor cells.

    PubMed

    Tezcaner, A; Hicks, D

    2008-07-01

    In developed countries the aging population faces increasing risks of blinding retinal diseases, for which there are few effective treatments available. Photoreceptor transplantation represents one approach, but generally results have been disappointing. We hypothesize that micropatterned biodegradable poly(L-lactic acid-co-glycolic acid)/poly(hydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvaleric acid) (PLGA-PHBV8) blend films could deliver photoreceptor cells in a more organized manner than bolus injections. Blending of PLGA and PHBV8 was used to optimize the degradation rate of the temporary template. At the end of 8 weeks, for both thin and thick films of PLGA-PHBV8 a 50% decrease of their initial weight with increasing water uptake was observed. When photoreceptor cells were seeded onto micropatterned PLGA-PHBV8 films with parallel grooves (21- and 42-microm-wide grooves and 20 microm ridge width and depth), the cells preferred laminin-deposited grooves to ridges and expressed rod- and cone-specific markers such as rhodopsin and arrestin. A loss in photoreceptor viability of 50% was observed after 7 days in culture. The effects of either retinal pigment epithelium (RPE)-derived or Muller glial cell-derived conditioned media or bFGF on the survival of photoreceptor cells seeded on PLGA-PHBV8 films were investigated. Addition of either RPE- and Muller-conditioned media increased statistically (p < 0.01) the viability of photoreceptor cells after 7 days of incubation. Our results suggest that such biodegradable micropatterned PLGA-PHBV8 blend films have a potential to deliver photoreceptor cells to the subretinal space and ensure laminar organization and maintenance of differentiation, and that incorporation of intrinsic factors within the scaffold would enhance the survival rate of transplanted cells.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Dosage Thresholds for AAV2 and AAV8 Photoreceptor Gene Therapy in Monkey

    PubMed Central

    Vandenberghe, Luk H.; Bell, Peter; Maguire, Albert M.; Cearley, Cassia N.; Xiao, Ru; Calcedo, Roberto; Wang, Lili; Castle, Michael J.; Maguire, Alexandra C.; Grant, Rebecca; Wolfe, John H.; Wilson, James M.; Bennett, Jean

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy is emerging as a therapeutic modality for treating disorders of the retina. Photoreceptor cells are the primary cell type affected in many inherited diseases of retinal degeneration. Successfully treating these diseases with gene therapy requires the identification of efficient and safe targeting vectors that can transduce photoreceptor cells. One serotype of adeno-associated virus, AAV2, has been used successfully in clinical trials to treat a form of congenital blindness that requires transduction of the supporting cells of the retina in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Here, we determined the dose required to achieve targeting of AAV2 and AAV8 vectors to photoreceptors in nonhuman primates. Transgene expression in animals injected subretinally with various doses of AAV2 or AAV8 vectors carrying a green fluorescent protein transgene was correlated with surgical, clinical, and immunological observations. Both AAV2 and AAV8 demonstrated efficient transduction of RPE, but AAV8 was markedly better at targeting photoreceptor cells. These preclinical results provide guidance for optimal vector and dose selection in future human gene therapy trials to treat retinal diseases caused by loss of photoreceptors. PMID:21697530

  2. TrkB/BDNF Signaling Regulates Photoreceptor Progenitor Cell Fate Decisions

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Brian A.; Sparrow, Janet; Cai, Bolin; Monroe, Julie; Mikawa, Takashi; Hempstead, Barbara L.

    2008-01-01

    Neurotrophins, via activation of Trk receptor tyrosine kinases, serve as mitogens, survival factors and regulators of arborization during retinal development. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and TrkB regulate neuronal arborization and survival in late retinal development. However, TrkB is expressed during early retinal developmet where its functions are unclear. To assess TrkB/BDNF actions in the early chick retina, replication-incompetent retroviruses were utilized to over-express a dominant negative truncated form of TrkB (trunc TrkB), or BDNF and effects were assessed at E15. Clones expressing trunc TrkB were smaller than controls, and proliferation and apoptosis assays suggest that decreased clone size correlated with increased cell death when BDNF/TrkB signaling was impaired. Analysis of clonal composition revealed that trunc TrkB over-expression decreased photoreceptor numbers (41%) and increased cell numbers in the middle third of the inner nuclear layer (INL) (23%). Conversely, BDNF over-expression increased photoreceptor numbers (25%) and decreased INL numbers (17%). Photoreceptors over-expressing trunc TrkB demonstrated no increase in apoptosis nor abnormalities in lamination suggesting that TrkB activation is not required for photoreceptor cell survival or migration. These studies suggest that TrkB signaling regulates commitment to and/or differentiation of photoreceptor cells from retinal progenitor cells, identifying a novel role for TrkB/BDNF in regulating cell fate decisions. PMID:17005175

  3. Topographical characterization of cone photoreceptors and the area centralis of the canine retina

    PubMed Central

    Mowat, Freya M.; Petersen-Jones, Simon M.; Williamson, Helen; Williams, David L.; Luthert, Philip J.; Ali, Robin R.

    2008-01-01

    Purpose The canine is an important large animal model of human retinal genetic disorders. Studies of ganglion cell distribution in the canine retina have identified a visual streak of high density superior to the optic disc with a temporal area of peak density known as the area centralis. The topography of cone photoreceptors in the canine retina has not been characterized in detail, and in contrast to the macula in humans, the position of the area centralis in dogs is not apparent on clinical funduscopic examination. The purpose of this study was to define the location of the area centralis in the dog and to characterize in detail the topography of rod and cone photoreceptors within the area centralis. This will facilitate the investigation and treatment of retinal disease in the canine. Methods We used peanut agglutinin, which labels cone matrix sheaths and antibodies against long/medium wavelength (L/M)- and short wavelength (S)-cone opsins, to stain retinal cryosections and flatmounts from beagle dogs. Retinas were imaged using differential interference contrast imaging, fluorescence, and confocal microscopy. Within the area centralis, rod and cone size and density were quantified, and the proportion of cones expressing each cone opsin subtype was calculated. Using a grid pattern of sampling in 9 retinal flatmounts, we investigated the distribution of cones throughout the retina to predict the location of the area centralis. Results We identified the area centralis as the site of maximal density of rod and cone photoreceptor cells, which have a smaller inner segment cross-sectional area in this region. L/M opsin was expressed by the majority of cones in the retina, both within the area centralis and in the peripheral retina. Using the mean of cone density distribution from 9 retinas, we calculated that the area centralis is likely to be centered at a point 1.5 mm temporal and 0.6 mm superior to the optic disc. For clinical funduscopic examination, this

  4. Restoration of Vision with Ectopic Expression of Human Rod Opsin.

    PubMed

    Cehajic-Kapetanovic, Jasmina; Eleftheriou, Cyril; Allen, Annette E; Milosavljevic, Nina; Pienaar, Abigail; Bedford, Robert; Davis, Katherine E; Bishop, Paul N; Lucas, Robert J

    2015-08-17

    Many retinal dystrophies result in photoreceptor loss, but the inner retinal neurons can survive, making them potentially amenable to emerging optogenetic therapies. Here, we show that ectopically expressed human rod opsin, driven by either a non-selective or ON-bipolar cell-specific promoter, can function outside native photoreceptors and restore visual function in a mouse model of advanced retinal degeneration. Electrophysiological recordings from retinal explants and the visual thalamus revealed changes in firing (increases and decreases) induced by simple light pulses, luminance increases, and naturalistic movies in treated mice. These responses could be elicited at light intensities within the physiological range and substantially below those required by other optogenetic strategies. Mice with rod opsin expression driven by the ON-bipolar specific promoter displayed behavioral responses to increases in luminance, flicker, coarse spatial patterns, and elements of a natural movie at levels of contrast and illuminance (≈50-100 lux) typical of natural indoor environments. These data reveal that virally mediated ectopic expression of human rod opsin can restore vision under natural viewing conditions and at moderate light intensities. Given the inherent advantages in employing a human protein, the simplicity of this intervention, and the quality of vision restored, we suggest that rod opsin merits consideration as an optogenetic actuator for treating patients with advanced retinal degeneration. PMID:26234216

  5. Restoration of Vision with Ectopic Expression of Human Rod Opsin.

    PubMed

    Cehajic-Kapetanovic, Jasmina; Eleftheriou, Cyril; Allen, Annette E; Milosavljevic, Nina; Pienaar, Abigail; Bedford, Robert; Davis, Katherine E; Bishop, Paul N; Lucas, Robert J

    2015-08-17

    Many retinal dystrophies result in photoreceptor loss, but the inner retinal neurons can survive, making them potentially amenable to emerging optogenetic therapies. Here, we show that ectopically expressed human rod opsin, driven by either a non-selective or ON-bipolar cell-specific promoter, can function outside native photoreceptors and restore visual function in a mouse model of advanced retinal degeneration. Electrophysiological recordings from retinal explants and the visual thalamus revealed changes in firing (increases and decreases) induced by simple light pulses, luminance increases, and naturalistic movies in treated mice. These responses could be elicited at light intensities within the physiological range and substantially below those required by other optogenetic strategies. Mice with rod opsin expression driven by the ON-bipolar specific promoter displayed behavioral responses to increases in luminance, flicker, coarse spatial patterns, and elements of a natural movie at levels of contrast and illuminance (≈50-100 lux) typical of natural indoor environments. These data reveal that virally mediated ectopic expression of human rod opsin can restore vision under natural viewing conditions and at moderate light intensities. Given the inherent advantages in employing a human protein, the simplicity of this intervention, and the quality of vision restored, we suggest that rod opsin merits consideration as an optogenetic actuator for treating patients with advanced retinal degeneration.

  6. Mouse rods signal through gap junctions with cones

    PubMed Central

    Asteriti, Sabrina; Gargini, Claudia; Cangiano, Lorenzo

    2014-01-01

    Rod and cone photoreceptors are coupled by gap junctions (GJs), relatively large channels able to mediate both electrical and molecular communication. Despite their critical location in our visual system and evidence that they are dynamically gated for dark/light adaptation, the full impact that rod–cone GJs can have on cone function is not known. We recorded the photovoltage of mouse cones and found that the initial level of rod input increased spontaneously after obtaining intracellular access. This process allowed us to explore the underlying coupling capacity to rods, revealing that fully coupled cones acquire a striking rod-like phenotype. Calcium, a candidate mediator of the coupling process, does not appear to be involved on the cone side of the junctional channels. Our findings show that the anatomical substrate is adequate for rod–cone coupling to play an important role in vision and, possibly, in biochemical signaling among photoreceptors. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01386.001 PMID:24399457

  7. 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

  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.

  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. 3',5'-cyclic adenosine monophosphate and adenylate cyclase in phototransduction by limulus ventral photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Brown, J E; Kaupp, U B; Malbon, C C

    1984-01-01

    Biochemical and electrophysiological measurements were made on photoreceptor cells from Limulus ventral eyes to investigate the possible role of cyclic AMP and adenylate cyclase in the visual transduction mechanism. Cyclic AMP content in a photoreceptor-enriched fraction (the end organs) of Limulus ventral eyes was approximately 15 pmol/mg protein. The cyclic AMP content was increased by bathing eyes in 1-methyl-3-isobutyl xanthine or forskolin and was increased almost 100-fold when bathed in both. Illumination did not change cyclic AMP content significantly in any of these conditions. Discrete events that can be recorded electrophysiologically occur spontaneously in darkness. An increase in the frequency of discrete events is evoked by dim illumination. The discrete events are a sign of excitation of Limulus photoreceptor cells. Drug-induced changes in the rate of occurrence of discrete events recorded electrophysiologically in darkness were not correlated with changes in cyclic AMP content. Adenylate cyclase activity measured from a small number of pooled photoreceptor clusters was stimulated by fluoride and vanadate ions, hydrolysis-resistant analogues of GTP, cholera toxin and forskolin. The Limulus enzyme is similar pharmacologically to mammalian and avian adenylate cyclases. Activation of adenylate cyclase by drugs was not correlated with changes in the rate of occurrence of discrete events recorded electrophysiologically in darkness. A heat-treated Lubrol extract of membranes from Limulus ventral eyes reconstituted the adenylate cyclase activity of membranes from S49 mouse lymphoma cyc- mutant cells which lack a functional regulatory protein. These findings suggest that Limulus ventral eye photoreceptors contain a regulatory protein that mediates the activation of adenylate cyclase by guanine nucleotides, fluoride or cholera toxin. This regulatory protein is homologous with that found in mammalian and avian adenylate cyclases. Our findings suggest that

  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. Pax6a and Pax6b are required at different points in neuronal progenitor cell proliferation during zebrafish photoreceptor regeneration.

    PubMed

    Thummel, Ryan; Enright, Jennifer M; Kassen, Sean C; Montgomery, Jacob E; Bailey, Travis J; Hyde, David R

    2010-05-01

    The light-damaged zebrafish retina results in the death of photoreceptor cells and the subsequent regeneration of the missing rod and cone cells. Photoreceptor regeneration initiates with asymmetric Müller glial cell division to produce neuronal progenitor cells, which amplify, migrate to the outer nuclear layer (ONL), and differentiate into both classes of photoreceptor cells. In this study, we examined the role of the Pax6 protein in regeneration. In zebrafish, there are two Pax6 proteins, one encoded by the pax6a gene and the other encoded by the pax6b gene. We intravitreally injected and electroporated morpholinos that were complementary to either the pax6a or pax6b mRNA to knockdown the translation of the corresponding protein. Loss of Pax6b expression did not affect Müller glial cell division, but blocked the subsequent first cell division of the neuronal progenitors. In contrast, the paralogous Pax6a protein was required for later neuronal progenitor cell divisions, which maximized the number of neuronal progenitors. Without neuronal progenitor cell amplification, proliferation of resident ONL rod precursor cells, which can only regenerate rods, increased inversely proportional to the number of INL neuronal progenitor cells. This confirmed that Müller glial-derived neuronal progenitor cells are necessary to regenerate cones and that distinct mechanisms selectively regenerate rod and cone photoreceptors. This work also defines distinct roles for Pax6a and Pax6b in regulating neuronal progenitor cell proliferation in the adult zebrafish retina and increases our understanding of the molecular pathways required for photoreceptor cell regeneration. PMID:20152834

  13. Control rod drive

    DOEpatents

    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.

  14. The transcription factor GTF2IRD1 regulates the topology and function of photoreceptors by modulating photoreceptor gene expression across the retina.

    PubMed

    Masuda, Tomohiro; Zhang, Xiaodong; Berlinicke, Cindy; Wan, Jun; Yerrabelli, Anitha; Conner, Elizabeth A; Kjellstrom, Sten; Bush, Ronald; Thorgeirsson, Snorri S; Swaroop, Anand; Chen, Shiming; Zack, Donald J

    2014-11-12

    The mechanisms that specify photoreceptor cell-fate determination, especially as regards to short-wave-sensitive (S) versus medium-wave-sensitive (M) cone identity, and maintain their nature and function, are not fully understood. Here we report the importance of general transcription factor II-I repeat domain-containing protein 1 (GTF2IRD1) in maintaining M cone cell identity and function as well as rod function. In the mouse, GTF2IRD1 is expressed in cell-fate determined photoreceptors at postnatal day 10. GTF2IRD1 binds to enhancer and promoter regions in the mouse rhodopsin, M- and S-opsin genes, but regulates their expression differentially. Through interaction with the transcription factors CRX and thyroid hormone receptor β 2, it enhances M-opsin expression, whereas it suppresses S-opsin expression; and with CRX and NRL, it enhances rhodopsin expression. In an apparent paradox, although GTF2IRD1 is widely expressed in multiple cell types across the retina, knock-out of GTF2IRD1 alters the retinal expression of only a limited number of annotated genes. Interestingly, however, the null mutation leads to altered topology of cone opsin expression in the retina, with aberrant S-opsin overexpression and M-opsin underexpression in M cones. Gtf2ird1-null mice also demonstrate abnormal M cone and rod electrophysiological responses. These findings suggest an important role for GTF2IRD1 in regulating the level and topology of rod and cone gene expression, and in maintaining normal retinal function. PMID:25392503

  15. The Transcription Factor GTF2IRD1 Regulates the Topology and Function of Photoreceptors by Modulating Photoreceptor Gene Expression across the Retina

    PubMed Central

    Masuda, Tomohiro; Zhang, Xiaodong; Berlinicke, Cindy; Wan, Jun; Yerrabelli, Anitha; Conner, Elizabeth A.; Kjellstrom, Sten; Bush, Ronald; Thorgeirsson, Snorri S.; Swaroop, Anand; Chen, Shiming

    2014-01-01

    The mechanisms that specify photoreceptor cell-fate determination, especially as regards to short-wave-sensitive (S) versus medium-wave-sensitive (M) cone identity, and maintain their nature and function, are not fully understood. Here we report the importance of general transcription factor II-I repeat domain-containing protein 1 (GTF2IRD1) in maintaining M cone cell identity and function as well as rod function. In the mouse, GTF2IRD1 is expressed in cell-fate determined photoreceptors at postnatal day 10. GTF2IRD1 binds to enhancer and promoter regions in the mouse rhodopsin, M- and S-opsin genes, but regulates their expression differentially. Through interaction with the transcription factors CRX and thyroid hormone receptor β 2, it enhances M-opsin expression, whereas it suppresses S-opsin expression; and with CRX and NRL, it enhances rhodopsin expression. In an apparent paradox, although GTF2IRD1 is widely expressed in multiple cell types across the retina, knock-out of GTF2IRD1 alters the retinal expression of only a limited number of annotated genes. Interestingly, however, the null mutation leads to altered topology of cone opsin expression in the retina, with aberrant S-opsin overexpression and M-opsin underexpression in M cones. Gtf2ird1-null mice also demonstrate abnormal M cone and rod electrophysiological responses. These findings suggest an important role for GTF2IRD1 in regulating the level and topology of rod and cone gene expression, and in maintaining normal retinal function. PMID:25392503

  16. Photoreceptor phagocytosis is mediated by phosphoinositide signaling.

    PubMed

    Mustafi, Debarshi; Kevany, Brian M; Genoud, Christel; Bai, Xiaodong; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2013-11-01

    Circadian oscillations in peripheral tissues, such as the retinal compartment of the eye, are critical to anticipating changing metabolic demands. Circadian shedding of retinal photoreceptor cell discs with subsequent phagocytosis by the neighboring retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) is essential for removal of toxic metabolites and lifelong survival of these postmitotic neurons. Defects in photoreceptor phagocytosis can lead to severe retinal pathology, but the biochemical mechanisms remain poorly defined. By first documenting a 2.8-fold burst of photoreceptor phagocytosis events in the mouse eye in the morning compared with the afternoon by serial block face imaging, we established time points to assess transcriptional readouts by RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq). We identified 365 oscillating protein-coding transcripts that implicated the phosphoinositide lipid signaling network mediating the discrete steps of photoreceptor phagocytosis. Moreover, examination of overlapping cistromic sites by core clock transcription factors and promoter elements of these effector genes provided a functional basis for the circadian cycling of these transcripts. RNA-Seq also revealed oscillating expression of 16 long intergenic noncoding RNAs and key histone modifying enzymes critical for circadian gene expression. Our phenotypic and genotypic characterization reveals a complex global landscape of overlapping and temporally controlled networks driving the essential circadian process in the eye.

  17. Photoreceptors mapping from past history till date.

    PubMed

    Parihar, Parul; Singh, Rachana; Singh, Samiksha; Tripathi, Durgesh Kumar; Chauhan, Devendra Kumar; Singh, Vijay Pratap; Prasad, Sheo Mohan

    2016-09-01

    The critical source of information in plants is light, which is perceived by receptors present in plants and animals. Receptors present in plant and animal system regulate important processes, and knowing the chromophores and signalling domains for each receptor could pave a way to trace out links between these receptors. The signalling mechanism for each receptor will give insight knowledge. This review has focussed on the photoreceptors from past history till date, that have evolved in the plant as well as in the animal system (to lesser extent). We have also focussed our attention on finding the links between the receptors by showing the commonalities as well as the differences between them, and also tried to trace out the links with the help of chromophores and signalling domain. Several photoreceptors have been traced out, which share similarity in the chromophore as well as in the signalling domain, which indicate towards the evolution of photoreceptors from one another. For instance, cryptochrome has been found to evolve three times from CPD photolyase as well as evolution of different types of phytochrome is a result of duplication and divergence. In addition, similarity between the photoreceptors suggested towards evolution from one another. This review has also discussed possible mechanism for each receptor i.e. how they regulate developmental processes and involve what kinds of regulators and also gives an insight on signalling mechanisms by these receptors. This review could also be a new initiative in the study of UVR8 associated studies.

  18. Transcriptional co-regulation of evolutionarily conserved microRNA/cone opsin gene pairs: implications for photoreceptor subtype specification.

    PubMed

    Daido, Yutaka; Hamanishi, Sakurako; Kusakabe, Takehiro G

    2014-08-01

    The vertebrate retina contains two types of photoreceptor cells, rods and cones, which use distinct types of opsins and phototransduction proteins. Cones can be further divided into several subtypes with differing wavelength sensitivity and morphology. Although photoreceptor development has been extensively studied in a variety of vertebrate species, the mechanism by which photoreceptor subtypes are established is still largely unknown. Here we report two microRNAs (miRNAs), miR-726 and miR-729, which are potentially involved in photoreceptor subtype specification. In the medaka Oryzias latipes, the genes encoding miR-726 and miR-729 are located upstream of the red-sensitive opsin gene LWS-A and the UV-sensitive opsin gene SWS1, respectively, and are transcribed in the opposite direction from the respective opsin genes. The miR-726/LWS pair is conserved between teleosts and tetrapods, and the miR-729/SWS1 pair is conserved among teleosts. in situ hybridization analyses and fluorescence reporter assays suggest that these miRNAs are co-expressed with the respective opsins in specific cone subtypes. Potential targets of miR-726 and miR-729 predicted in silico include several transcription factors that regulate photoreceptor development. Functional analyses of cis-regulatory sequences in vivo suggest that transcription of the paired microRNA and opsin genes is co-regulated by common cis-regulatory modules. We propose an evolutionarily conserved mechanism that controls photoreceptor subtype identity through coupling between transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulations.

  19. 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.

  20. 1987 Sucker rod tables

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-03-01

    This reference identifies manufacturers qualified to produce API sucker rods and related equipment, lists chemical and mechanical properties of the various types of rods and provides dimensional characteristics. In addition, similar information is given for non-API products such as fiberglass and hollow rods.

  1. Circadian clock control of connexin36 phosphorylation in retinal photoreceptors of the CBA/CaJ mouse strain.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhijing; Li, Hongyan; Liu, Xiaoqin; O'Brien, John; Ribelayga, Christophe P

    2015-01-01

    The gap-junction-forming protein connexin36 (Cx36) represents the anatomical substrate of photoreceptor electrical coupling in mammals. The strength of coupling is directly correlated to the phosphorylation of Cx36 at two regulatory sites: Ser110 and Ser293. Our previous work demonstrated that the extent of biotinylated tracer coupling between photoreceptor cells, which provides an index of the extent of electrical coupling, depends on the mouse strain. In the C57Bl/6J strain, light or dopamine reduces tracer coupling and Cx36 phosphorylation in photoreceptors. Conversely, darkness or a dopaminergic antagonist increases tracer coupling and Cx36 phosphorylation, regardless of the daytime. In the CBA/CaJ strain, photoreceptor tracer coupling is not only regulated by light and dopamine, but also by a circadian clock, a type of oscillator with a period close to 24 h and intrinsic to the retina, so that under prolonged dark-adapted conditions tracer coupling is broader at night compared to daytime. In the current study, we examined whether the modulation of photoreceptor coupling by a circadian clock in the CBA/CaJ mouse photoreceptors reflected a change in Cx36 protein expression and/or phosphorylation. We found no significant change in Cx36 expression or in the number of Cx36 gap junction among the conditions examined. However, we found that Cx36 phosphorylation is higher under dark-adapted conditions at night than in the daytime, and is the lowest under prolonged illumination at any time of the day/night cycle. Our observations are consistent with the view that the circadian clock regulation of photoreceptor electrical coupling is mouse strain-dependent and highlights the critical position of Cx36 phosphorylation in the control of photoreceptor coupling.

  2. What determines the relationship between color naming, unique hues, and sensory singularities: Illuminations, surfaces, or photoreceptors?

    PubMed

    Witzel, Christoph; Cinotti, François; O'Regan, J Kevin

    2015-01-01

    The relationship between the sensory signal of the photoreceptors on one hand and color appearance and language on the other hand is completely unclear. A recent finding established a surprisingly accurate correlation between focal colors, unique hues, and so-called singularities in the laws governing how sensory signals for different surfaces change across illuminations. This article examines how this correlation with singularities depends on reflectances, illuminants, and cone sensitivities. Results show that this correlation holds for a large range of illuminants and for a large range of sensors, including sensors that are fundamentally different from human photoreceptors. In contrast, the spectral characteristics of the reflectance spectra turned out to be the key factor that determines the correlation between focal colors, unique hues, and sensory singularities. These findings suggest that the origins of color appearance and color language may be found in particular characteristics of the reflectance spectra that correspond to focal colors and unique hues.

  3. 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.

  4. Response Function of the Crayfish Caudal Photoreceptor to Hydrodynamic Stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breite, Sally; Bahar, Sonya; Neiman, Alexander; Moss, Frank

    2002-03-01

    In its abdominal 6th ganglion the crayfish houses 2 light-sensitive neurons (caudal photoreceptors, or CPRs). It is known that these neurons work in tandem with a mechanosensory system of tiny hairs spread across the tailfan, which make synaptic contact with the photoreceptors. A stochastic resonance effect has been shown in this system in which light enhances the transduction of a weak, periodic mechanosensory (hydrodynamic) stimulus. It is not known, however, whether an optimal response from the CPR is induced by a single sine wave cycle or some other waveform. We have experimentally investigated this favorable waveform by driving a tailfan preparation with mechanical 10 Hz correlated Ornstein-Uhlenbeck noise and calculating the response function from the spike-triggered average of the applied noise waveform. We will discuss differences in the shape of the optimal waveform under dark and light conditions, as well as what seems to be a noticeable difference in the magnitude of the animals' response to a noisy stimulus in comparison with a periodic stimulus.

  5. Void Fraction and Pressure Drop in Two-Phase Equilibrium Flows in a Vertical 2 × 3 Rod Bundle Channel ─ Assessment of Correlations against the Present Subchannel Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sadatomi, Michio; Kano, Keiko; Kawahara, Akimaro; Mori, Naoki

    In order to increase void fraction and pressure drop data in a multi-subchannel system like an actual fuel rod bundle, air-water experiments have been conducted using a vertical 2 × 3 rod bundle channel made up of two central and four side subchannels as the test channel. Void fraction and pressure drop in each subchannel were measured and the frictional pressure drop was determined mainly for slug and churn flows. The results show that both the void fraction and the frictional pressure drop are higher in the central subchannel than the side one. In order to analyze the data, the data on gas and liquid flow rates in each subchannel under the same flow condition have been used. In the analysis, the calculations by various correlations reported in literatures have been compared with the present data for validation. The recommended correlations respectively for the void fraction and the frictional pressure drop have been clarified. Results of such experiments and analyses are presented and discussed in this paper.

  6. Sucker rod construction

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, R.A.; Goodman, J.L.; Tickle, J.D.; Liskey, A.K.

    1987-03-31

    A sucker rod construction is described comprising: a connector member being formed to define a rod receptacle having a closed axially inner end and an open axially outer end, the rod receptacle having axially spaced, tapered annular surfaces, a cylindrical fiberglass rod having an end having an outer surface being received within the rod receptacle through the outer end and cooperating therewith to define an annular chamber between the outer surface of the end of the rod and the tapered annular surfaces, and a bonding means positioned in the annular chamber for bonding to the outer surface of the end of the rod to confront the tapered annular surfaces, each annular surface having an angle of taper with respect to the outer surface of the fiberglass rod, and each angle of taper being progressively and uniformly less toward the open end by an amount between one and one-half degrees and two degrees, inclusive, and a collet connected to the connector member adjacent the open axially outer end of the rod receptacle and having an axial bore therethrough retaining the end of the rod in coaxial position within the rod receptacle.

  7. Photoreceptor dysplasia (pd) in miniature schnauzer dogs: evaluation of candidate genes by molecular genetic analysis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Q; Baldwin, V J; Acland, G M; Parshall, C J; Haskel, J; Aguirre, G D; Ray, K

    1999-01-01

    Photoreceptor dysplasia (pd) is one of a group of at least six distinct autosomal and one X-linked retinal disorders identified in dogs which are collectively known as progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). It is an early onset retinal disease identified in miniature schnauzer dogs, and pedigree analysis and breeding studies have established autosomal recessive inheritance of the disease. Using a gene-based approach, a number of retina-expressed genes, including some members of the phototransduction pathway, have been causally implicated in retinal diseases of humans and other animals. Here we examined seven such potential candidate genes (opsin, RDS/peripherin, ROM1, rod cGMP-gated cation channel alpha-subunit, and three subunits of transducin) for their causal association with the pd locus by testing segregation of intragenic markers with the disease locus, or, in the absence of informative polymorphisms, sequencing of the coding regions of the genes. Based on these results, we have conclusively excluded four photoreceptor-specific genes as candidates for pd by linkage analysis. For three other photoreceptor-specific genes, we did not find any mutation in the coding sequences of the genes and have excluded them provisionally. Formal exclusion would require investigation of the levels of expression of the candidate genes in pd-affected dogs relative to age-matched controls. At present we are building suitable informative pedigrees for the disease locus with a sufficient number of meiosis to be useful for genomewide screening. This should identify markers linked to the disease locus and eventually permit progress toward the identification of the photoreceptor dysplasia gene and the disease-causing mutation.

  8. Wear resistant rod guide

    SciTech Connect

    Gray, K.W.

    1991-12-03

    This paper describes a sucker rod guide. It comprises: a series of sucker rods connected end to end forming a sucker rod string, the sucker rod string extending down into a tubing string of a producing oil well from a pump jack located on the surface of the ground above the tubing string to a pump located at a bottom end of the tubing string, the pump forces produced fluid collected at the bottom end of the tubing string up to the ground's surface, the produced fluid occupies a space between the rod string and the tubing string through which the fluid is channeled from the bottom end of the tubing string to the ground's surface, the pump jack raises and lowers the rod string in the fluid being pumped up the tubing string while the fluid bathes the rod string within the tubing string, wherein the improvement comprises the following structure in combination with the above.

  9. Sucker rod guide

    SciTech Connect

    Edwards, B.J.; Starks, J.A.

    1989-08-22

    This patent describes a sucker rod guide for mounting on a sucker rod and spacing the sucker rod from the tubing in an oil well. The guide comprising a generally cylindrically-shaped, extruded, ultra-high density polyethylene body having a substantially smooth outside surface; a longitudinal bore provided centrally of the body. The bore having a smaller diameter than the diameter of the sucker rod; a plurality of grooves provided in circumferential relationship in the bore; and a tapered slot extending longitudinally through the body from the outside surface to the bore. The tapered slot further comprising a slot mouth located at the outside surface and a slot throat spaced from the slot mouth. The slot throat lying adjacent to the sucker rod bore and wherein the slot throat is wider than the slot mouth for mounting the sucker rod guide on the sucker rod.

  10. Low turbulence rod guide

    SciTech Connect

    Olinger, E.L.

    1992-05-26

    This patent describes an improved sucker rod guide for fixedly engaging around a sucker rod at a selected location along the length of the rod. It comprises a substantially cylindrical polymeric body having a longitudinal axis, a terminal end substantially continually tapered to the rod, a radially-inward surface and a radially outward surface, the radially inward surface of the body adjacent to and in tripping engagement with the rod when the rod guide is fixedly engaged around the rod; and a plurality of substantially continuous, longitudinal vanes carried by the body, a vane having a selected length and width, and longitudinally disposed along the radially outward surface of the guide body, extending radially away from the guide body and having a radially outside wear surface.

  11. 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)

  12. Intracellular recordings of rod responses during dark-adaptation.

    PubMed Central

    Grabowski, S R; Pak, W L

    1975-01-01

    1. Dark-adaptation of rod photoreceptors has been studied in the isolated axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) retina by intracellular recordings. Rod responsiveness was greatly reduced immediately after a 30 sec partial bleach, but partially recovered with time in the dark. 2. In parallel spectrophotometric measurements using isolated retinas, regeneration of the rod pigment could not be detected after a 30 sec bleach. 3. During rod dark-adaptation, the response of a rod to a given stimulus increased in amplitude, duration, and rate of rise but did not recover completely to the dark-adapted values. Response latency was lengthened immediately after a bleach but ultimately returned to the dark-adapted level. 4. The time courses of dark-adaptation determined on the basis of the intensity of a stimulus needed to evoke a response having a criterion amplitude, a criterion duration, or a criterion rate of rise were similar. On the other hand changes in latency of the response and magnitude of the saturated amplitude followed different time courses. Change in log threshold was found to be related to change in saturated amplitude by an exponential function during dark-adaptation. 5. After bleaching 10% or less of the rod pigment, the kinetics of both recovery of log threshold and decrease in absorbance at 400 nm (metarhodopsin II+free retinal) could be described by two concurrent first-order processes having similar time constants. However, after bleaching more than 10% of the rod pigment, changes in sensitivity and absorbance did not follow parallel time courses. 6. Metarhodopsin III cannot be solely responsible for setting the axolotl rod sensitivity since rod thresholds decrease monotonically during dark-adaptation whereas meta III concentration reaches a peak 3 min after the bleach and decreases thereafter. PMID:1151778

  13. myosin 7aa−/− mutant zebrafish show mild photoreceptor degeneration and reduced electroretinographic responses

    PubMed Central

    Wasfy, Meagan M.; Matsui, Jonathan I.; Miller, Jessica; Dowling, John E.; Perkins, Brian D.

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in myosin VIIa (MYO7A) cause Usher syndrome 1B (USH1B), a disease characterized by the combination of sensorineural hearing loss and visual impairment termed retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Although the shaker-1 mouse model of USH1B exists, only minor defects in the retina have been observed during its lifespan. Previous studies of the zebrafish mariner mutant, which also carries a mutation in myo7aa, revealed balance and hearing defects in the mutants but the retinal phenotype has not been described. We found elevated cell death in the outer nuclear layer (ONL) of myo7aa−/− mutants. While myo7aa−/− mutants retained visual behaviors in the optokinetic reflex (OKR) assay, electroretinogram (ERG) recordings revealed a significant decrease in both a- and b-wave amplitudes in mutant animals, but not a change in ERG threshold sensitivity. Immunohistochemistry showed mislocalization of rod and blue cone opsins and reduced expression of rod-specific markers in the myo7aa−/− ONL, providing further evidence that the photoreceptor degeneration observed represents the initial stages of the RP. Further, constant light exposure resulted in widespread photoreceptor degeneration and the appearance of large holes in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). No differences were observed in the retinomotor movements of the photoreceptors or in melanosome migration within the RPE, suggesting that myo7aa−/− does not function in these processes in teleosts. These results indicate that the zebrafish myo7aa−/− mutant is a useful animal model for the RP seen in humans with USH1B. PMID:24698764

  14. Cloning and expression of a second photoreceptor-specific membrane retina guanylyl cyclase (RetGC), RetGC-2.

    PubMed Central

    Lowe, D G; Dizhoor, A M; Liu, K; Gu, Q; Spencer, M; Laura, R; Lu, L; Hurley, J B

    1995-01-01

    One of the membrane guanylyl cyclases (GCs), RetGC, is expressed predominantly in photoreceptors. No extracellular ligand has been described for RetGC, but it is sensitive to activation by a soluble 24-kDa protein (p24) and is inhibited by Ca2+. This enzyme is, therefore, thought to play a role in resynthesizing cGMP for photoreceptor recovery or adaptation. By screening a human retinal cDNA library at low stringency with the cytoplasmic domains from four cyclases, we cloned cDNAs encoding a membrane CG that is most closely related to RetGC. We have named this GC RetGC-2, and now term the initially described RetGC RetGC-1. By in situ hybridization, mRNA encoding RetGC-2 is found only in the outer nuclear layer and inner segments of photoreceptor cells. By using synthetic peptide antiserum specific for each RetGC subtype, RetGC-2 can be distinguished from RetGC-1 as a slightly smaller protein in immunoblots of bovine rod outer segments. Membrane GC activity of recombinant RetGC-2 expressed in human embryonic kidney 293 cells is stimulated by the activator p24 and is inhibited by Ca2+ with an EC50 value of 50-100 nM. Our data reveal a previously unappreciated diversity of photoreceptor GCs. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 PMID:7777544

  15. Retinal signal transmission in Duchenne muscular dystrophy: evidence for dysfunction in the photoreceptor/depolarizing bipolar cell pathway.

    PubMed Central

    Fitzgerald, K M; Cibis, G W; Giambrone, S A; Harris, D J

    1994-01-01

    There have been reports of abnormal retinal neurotransmission determined by electroretinography in boys with Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy. Dystrophin may play a role in transmitting signals between photoreceptors and the excitatory synapse of the ON-bipolar cell. These electroretinographic changes appeared to be limited to the rod ON-pathway but we felt there was also similar abnormality in the cone ON-pathway. We used long-duration stimuli to separate ON-(depolarizing bipolar cell) and OFF (hyperpolarizing bipolar cell) contributions to the cone-dominated ERG to better understand how the retina functions in boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. We recorded the electroretinograms of 11 boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy and found abnormal signal transmission at the level of the photoreceptor and ON-bipolar cell in both the rod and cone generated responses. The OFF-bipolar cell that responds to the offset of the stimulus continues to function normally. The results support our hypothesis that retinal dystrophin plays a role in receptor function or controlling ion channels at the level of the photoreceptor and depolarizing bipolar cell. PMID:8200977

  16. A single valine residue plays an essential role in peripherin/rds targeting to photoreceptor outer segments.

    PubMed

    Salinas, Raquel Y; Baker, Sheila A; Gospe, Sidney M; Arshavsky, Vadim Y

    2013-01-01

    Peripherin/retinal degeneration slow (rds) is an integral membrane protein specifically localized to the light-sensing organelle of the photoreceptor cell, the outer segment. Within the outer segment, peripherin is found at the edges of photoreceptor discs, where it plays a critical role in disc morphogenesis and maintenance. Peripherin loss or mutations are often associated with severe forms of visual impairments. Like all other resident outer segment proteins, peripherin is synthesized in the photoreceptor cell body and subsequently transported to the outer segment. In an effort to further examine peripherin's delivery to outer segments, we undertook a careful examination of its targeting sequence. Using a fluorescently labeled reporter expressed in the rods of transgenic tadpoles, we narrowed peripherin's targeting sequence to ten amino acids within its C-terminal tail. This small stretch of amino acid residues is both necessary and sufficient for outer segment targeting. We also conducted alanine scanning of all residues within this sequence and found that only a single residue, valine at position 332, is essential for outer segment targeting. This valine is conserved in all species and its mutation is sufficient to completely abrogate the targeting of full-length peripherin in mouse rods.

  17. Beta-ionone activates and bleaches visual pigment in salamander photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Isayama, Tomoki; McCabe England, S L; Crouch, R K; Zimmerman, A L; Makino, C L

    2009-01-01

    Vision begins with photoisomerization of 11-cis retinal to the all-trans conformation within the chromophore-binding pocket of opsin, leading to activation of a biochemical cascade. Release of all-trans retinal from the binding pocket curtails but does not fully quench the ability of opsin to activate transducin. All-trans retinal and some other analogs, such as beta-ionone, enhance opsin's activity, presumably on binding the empty chromophore-binding pocket. By recording from isolated salamander photoreceptors and from patches of rod outer segment membrane, we now show that high concentrations of beta-ionone suppressed circulating current in dark-adapted green-sensitive rods by inhibiting the cyclic nucleotide-gated channels. There were also decreases in circulating current and flash sensitivity, and accelerated flash response kinetics in dark-adapted blue-sensitive (BS) rods and cones, and in ultraviolet-sensitive cones, at concentrations too low to inhibit the channels. These effects persisted in BS rods even after incubation with 9-cis retinal to ensure complete regeneration of their visual pigment. After long exposures to high concentrations of beta-ionone, recovery was incomplete unless 9-cis retinal was given, indicating that visual pigment had been bleached. Therefore, we propose that beta-ionone activates and bleaches some types of visual pigments, mimicking the effects of light.

  18. Essential Role of the Chaperonin CCT in Rod Outer Segment Biogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Sinha, Satyabrata; Belcastro, Marycharmain; Datta, Poppy; Seo, Seongjin; Sokolov, Maxim

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. While some evidence suggests an essential role for the chaperonin containing t-complex protein 1 (CCT) in ciliogenesis, this function remains poorly understood mechanistically. We used transgenic mice, previously generated in our lab, and characterized by a genetically-induced suppression of CCT in rod photoreceptors as well as a malformation of the rod sensory cilia, the outer segments, to gain new insights into this underlying molecular mechanism. Methods. The CCT activity in rod photoreceptors of mice was suppressed by overexpressing the chaperonin inhibitor, phosducin-like protein short, and the ensuing changes of cellular morphology were analyzed by light and electron microscopy. Protein expression levels were studied by fluorescent microscopy and Western blotting. Results. Suppressing the chaperonin made the photoreceptors incompetent to build their outer segments. Specifically, the CCT-deficient rods appeared unable to expand the outer segment plasma membrane, and accommodate growth of this compartment. Seeking the molecular mechanisms underlying such a shortcoming, we found that the affected rods could not express normal levels of Bardet-Biedl Syndrome (BBS) proteins 2, 5, and 7 and, owing to that deficiency, were unable to assemble the BBSome, a multisubunit complex responsible for ciliary trafficking. A similar effect in response to the chaperonin suppression was also observed in cultured ciliated cells. Conclusions. Our data provide new evidence indicating the essential role of the chaperonin CCT in the biogenesis of vertebrate photoreceptor sensory cilia, and suggest that it may be due to the direct participation of the chaperonin in the posttranslational processing of selected BBS proteins and assembly of the BBSome. PMID:24854858

  19. Developmental changes in biophysical properties of photoreceptors in the common water strider (Gerris lacustris): better performance at higher cost.

    PubMed

    Frolov, Roman; Weckström, Matti

    2014-08-15

    Although the dependence of invertebrate photoreceptor biophysical properties on visual ecology has already been investigated in some cases, developmental aspects have largely been ignored due to the general research emphasis on holometabolous insects. Here, using the patch-clamp method, we examined changes in biophysical properties and performance of photoreceptors in the common water strider Gerris lacustris during postembryonic development. We identified two types of peripheral photoreceptors, green and blue sensitive. Whole cell capacitance (a measure of cell size) of blue photoreceptors was significantly higher than the capacitance of green photoreceptors (69 ± 20 vs. 43 ± 12 pF, respectively). Most of the measured morphological and biophysical parameters changed with development. Photoreceptor capacitance increased progressively and was positively correlated with sensitivity to light, magnitudes and densities of light-induced (LIC) and delayed rectifier K(+) (IDR) currents, membrane corner frequency, and maximal information rate [Spearman rank correlation coefficients: 0.70 (sensitivity), 0.79 (LIC magnitude), 0.79 (IDR magnitude), 0.48 (corner frequency), and 0.57 (information rate)]. Transient K(+) current increased to a smaller extent, while its density decreased. We found no significant changes in the properties of single photon responses or levels of light-induced depolarization, the latter indicating a balanced channelome expansion associated with IDR expression. However, the dramatic ∼7.6-fold increase in IDR from first instars to adults indicated a development-related rise in the metabolic cost of information. In conclusion, this study provides novel insights into functional photoreceptor adaptations with development and illustrates remarkable variability in patterns of postembryonic retinal development in hemimetabolous insects with dissimilar visual ecologies and behaviors.

  20. Donor and host photoreceptors engage in material transfer following transplantation of post-mitotic photoreceptor precursors

    PubMed Central

    Pearson, R. A.; Gonzalez-Cordero, A.; West, E. L.; Ribeiro, J. R.; Aghaizu, N.; Goh, D.; Sampson, R. D.; Georgiadis, A.; Waldron, P. V.; Duran, Y.; Naeem, A.; Kloc, M.; Cristante, E.; Kruczek, K.; Warre-Cornish, K.; Sowden, J. C.; Smith, A. J.; Ali, R. R.

    2016-01-01

    Photoreceptor replacement by transplantation is proposed as a treatment for blindness. Transplantation of healthy photoreceptor precursor cells into diseased murine eyes leads to the presence of functional photoreceptors within host retinae that express an array of donor-specific proteins. The resulting improvement in visual function was understood to be due to donor cells integrating within host retinae. Here, however, we show that while integration occurs the majority of donor-reporter-labelled cells in the host arises as a result of material transfer between donor and host photoreceptors. Material transfer does not involve permanent donor–host nuclear or cell–cell fusion, or the uptake of free protein or nucleic acid from the extracellular environment. Instead, RNA and/or protein are exchanged between donor and host cells in vivo. These data require a re-evaluation of the mechanisms underlying rescue by photoreceptor transplantation and raise the possibility of material transfer as a strategy for the treatment of retinal disorders. PMID:27701378

  1. Mfsd2a Is a Transporter for the Essential ω-3 Fatty Acid Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) in Eye and Is Important for Photoreceptor Cell Development.

    PubMed

    Wong, Bernice H; Chan, Jia Pei; Cazenave-Gassiot, Amaury; Poh, Rebecca W; Foo, Juat Chin; Galam, Dwight L A; Ghosh, Sujoy; Nguyen, Long N; Barathi, Veluchamy A; Yeo, Sia W; Luu, Chi D; Wenk, Markus R; Silver, David L

    2016-05-13

    Eye photoreceptor membrane discs in outer rod segments are highly enriched in the visual pigment rhodopsin and the ω-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The eye acquires DHA from blood, but transporters for DHA uptake across the blood-retinal barrier or retinal pigment epithelium have not been identified. Mfsd2a is a newly described sodium-dependent lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) symporter expressed at the blood-brain barrier that transports LPCs containing DHA and other long-chain fatty acids. LPC transport via Mfsd2a has been shown to be necessary for human brain growth. Here we demonstrate that Mfsd2a is highly expressed in retinal pigment epithelium in embryonic eye, before the development of photoreceptors, and is the primary site of Mfsd2a expression in the eye. Eyes from whole body Mfsd2a-deficient (KO) mice, but not endothelium-specific Mfsd2a-deficient mice, were DHA-deficient and had significantly reduced LPC/DHA transport in vivo Fluorescein angiography indicated normal blood-retinal barrier function. Histological and electron microscopic analysis indicated that Mfsd2a KO mice exhibited a specific reduction in outer rod segment length, disorganized outer rod segment discs, and mislocalization of and reduction in rhodopsin early in postnatal development without loss of photoreceptors. Minor photoreceptor cell loss occurred in adult Mfsd2a KO mice, but electroretinography indicated visual function was normal. The developing eyes of Mfsd2a KO mice had activated microglia and up-regulation of lipogenic and cholesterogenic genes, likely adaptations to loss of LPC transport. These findings identify LPC transport via Mfsd2a as an important pathway for DHA uptake in eye and for development of photoreceptor membrane discs. PMID:27008858

  2. Mfsd2a Is a Transporter for the Essential ω-3 Fatty Acid Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) in Eye and Is Important for Photoreceptor Cell Development.

    PubMed

    Wong, Bernice H; Chan, Jia Pei; Cazenave-Gassiot, Amaury; Poh, Rebecca W; Foo, Juat Chin; Galam, Dwight L A; Ghosh, Sujoy; Nguyen, Long N; Barathi, Veluchamy A; Yeo, Sia W; Luu, Chi D; Wenk, Markus R; Silver, David L

    2016-05-13

    Eye photoreceptor membrane discs in outer rod segments are highly enriched in the visual pigment rhodopsin and the ω-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The eye acquires DHA from blood, but transporters for DHA uptake across the blood-retinal barrier or retinal pigment epithelium have not been identified. Mfsd2a is a newly described sodium-dependent lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) symporter expressed at the blood-brain barrier that transports LPCs containing DHA and other long-chain fatty acids. LPC transport via Mfsd2a has been shown to be necessary for human brain growth. Here we demonstrate that Mfsd2a is highly expressed in retinal pigment epithelium in embryonic eye, before the development of photoreceptors, and is the primary site of Mfsd2a expression in the eye. Eyes from whole body Mfsd2a-deficient (KO) mice, but not endothelium-specific Mfsd2a-deficient mice, were DHA-deficient and had significantly reduced LPC/DHA transport in vivo Fluorescein angiography indicated normal blood-retinal barrier function. Histological and electron microscopic analysis indicated that Mfsd2a KO mice exhibited a specific reduction in outer rod segment length, disorganized outer rod segment discs, and mislocalization of and reduction in rhodopsin early in postnatal development without loss of photoreceptors. Minor photoreceptor cell loss occurred in adult Mfsd2a KO mice, but electroretinography indicated visual function was normal. The developing eyes of Mfsd2a KO mice had activated microglia and up-regulation of lipogenic and cholesterogenic genes, likely adaptations to loss of LPC transport. These findings identify LPC transport via Mfsd2a as an important pathway for DHA uptake in eye and for development of photoreceptor membrane discs.

  3. Fine structure of the retinal photoreceptors of the great horned owl (Bubo virginianus).

    PubMed

    Braekevelt, C R

    1993-01-01

    The retinal photoreceptors of the great horned owl (Bubo virginianus) consist of rods, single cones and unequal double cones present in a ratio of about 30:1.2. In the light-adapted state the rods are stout cells which are not felt to undergo retinomotor movements. The rod outer segment consists of a stack of scalloped membranous discs enclosed by the cell membrane. The rod inner segment shows an ellipsoid of mitochondria and a wealth of rough endoplasmic reticulum (RER) and polysomes, Golgi zones and autophagic vacuoles but not hyperboloid of glycogen. Single cones show a slightly tapered outer segment, a heterogenous oil droplet and an ellipsoid of mitochondria at the apex of the inner segment. Double cones consist of a larger chief member which also displays an oil droplet and a slightly smaller accessory member which does not. Both members of the double cone as well as the single cone show a prominent ellipsoid, plentiful polysomes and RER and Golgi zones in the inner segment. Neither single nor double cones possess a condensed paraboloid of glycogen but instead show plentiful scattered glycogen particles. Along the contiguous membranes between accessory and chief cones a few presumed junctional complexes are seen near the external limiting membrane. Judging by their morphology in light-adaptation the cones of this species do not undergo photomechanical movements. Rods and cones (both types) have both invaginated (ribbon) and numerous superficial (conventional) synaptic sites. Rods are more numerous in this nocturnally active bird than is usually noted in avian species. PMID:8443432

  4. Spontaneous Regeneration of Human Photoreceptor Outer Segments.

    PubMed

    Horton, Jonathan C; Parker, Alicia B; Botelho, James V; Duncan, Jacque L

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptors are damaged in many common eye diseases, such as macular degeneration, retinal detachment, and retinitis pigmentosa. The development of methods to promote the repair or replacement of affected photoreceptors is a major goal of vision research. In this context, it would be useful to know whether photoreceptors are capable of undergoing some degree of spontaneous regeneration after injury. We report a subject who lost retinal function in a wide zone around the optic disc, giving rise to massive enlargement of the physiological blind spot. Imaging with an adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscope (AOSLO) showed depletion of cone outer segments in the affected retina. A year later visual function had improved, with shrinkage of the enlarged blind spot. AOSLO imaging showed repopulation of cone outer segments, although their density remained below normal. There was a one-to-one match between sites of formerly missing outer segments and new outer segments that had appeared over the course of the year's recovery. This correspondence provided direct morphological evidence that damaged cones are capable, under some circumstances, of generating new outer segments. PMID:26213154

  5. Breakdown analysis of multilayer amorphous silicon photoreceptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Jian

    1993-06-01

    The breakdown mechanism of hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) has been investigated. It has been shown that the acceptance of the surface potential of an a-Si:H photoreceptor is very sensitive to the micro-roughness of the substrate surface. This is because the junction between the metal substrate (usually aluminum) and the blocking layer (p+ or n+ a-Si:H) is strongly affected by the micro-roughness of the substrate surface. A model is proposed to expound this phenomenon, which indicates that the existence of micro- defects on the substrate surface results in the bending of the metal-semiconductor junction at these defect positions; that is, the original parallel plane junction changes into a spherical abrupt junction. Compared to the former, the curved junction has a lower breakdown voltage, therefore, it will more easily break down at these defect positions during charging. An a-Si:H photoreceptor was prepared on the drum substrate half covered with a thin aluminum film to confirm the model. The experiment result was qualitatively in agreement with the analysis mentioned above. In addition, the effects of PVD-like deposition processes (e.g., high power or high argon diluted silane deposition) on the microstructure and breakdown of a-Si:H photoreceptors are reviewed.

  6. Spontaneous Regeneration of Human Photoreceptor Outer Segments

    PubMed Central

    Horton, Jonathan C.; Parker, Alicia B.; Botelho, James V.; Duncan, Jacque L.

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptors are damaged in many common eye diseases, such as macular degeneration, retinal detachment, and retinitis pigmentosa. The development of methods to promote the repair or replacement of affected photoreceptors is a major goal of vision research. In this context, it would be useful to know whether photoreceptors are capable of undergoing some degree of spontaneous regeneration after injury. We report a subject who lost retinal function in a wide zone around the optic disc, giving rise to massive enlargement of the physiological blind spot. Imaging with an adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscope (AOSLO) showed depletion of cone outer segments in the affected retina. A year later visual function had improved, with shrinkage of the enlarged blind spot. AOSLO imaging showed repopulation of cone outer segments, although their density remained below normal. There was a one-to-one match between sites of formerly missing outer segments and new outer segments that had appeared over the course of the year’s recovery. This correspondence provided direct morphological evidence that damaged cones are capable, under some circumstances, of generating new outer segments. PMID:26213154

  7. 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.

  8. Pull rod assembly

    DOEpatents

    Cioletti, Olisse C.

    1990-01-01

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. Pull rod assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Cioletti, O.C.

    1990-05-22

    This patent describes a pull rod assembly. It comprises: a pull rod having three peripheral grooves, a piston device including an adaptor ring and a seal ring. The piston device is 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.

  11. BRAIN PHOTORECEPTOR PATHWAYS CONTRIBUTING TO CIRCADIAN RHYTHMICITY IN CRAYFISH

    PubMed Central

    Sullivan, Jeremy M.; Genco, Maria C.; Marlow, Elizabeth D.; Benton, Jeanne L.; Beltz, Barbara S.; Sandeman, David C.

    2011-01-01

    Freshwater crayfish have three known photoreceptive systems: the compound eyes, extraretinal brain photoreceptors, and caudal photoreceptors. The primary goal of the work described here was to explore the contribution of the brain photoreceptors to circadian locomotory activity and define some of the underlying neural pathways. Immunocytochemical studies of the brain photoreceptors in the parastacid (southern hemisphere) crayfish Cherax destructor reveal their expression of the blue light-sensitive photopigment cryptochrome and the neurotransmitter histamine. The brain photo-receptors project to two small protocerebral neuropils, the brain photoreceptor neuropils (BPNs), where they terminate among fibers expressing the neuropeptide pigment-dispersing hormone (PDH), a signaling molecule in arthropod circadian systems. Comparable pathways are also described in the astacid (northern hemisphere) crayfish Procambarus clarkii. Despite exhibiting markedly different diurnal locomotor activity rhythms, removal of the compound eyes and caudal photoreceptors in both C. destructor and P. clarkii (leaving the brain photoreceptors intact) does not abolish the normal light/dark activity cycle in either species, nor prevent the entrainment of their activity cycles to phase shifts of the light/dark period. These results suggest, therefore, that crayfish brain photoreceptors are sufficient for the entrainment of loco-motor activity rhythms to photic stimuli, and that they can act in the absence of the compound eyes and caudal photoreceptors. We also demonstrate that the intensity of PDH expression in the BPNs varies in phase with the locomotor activity rhythm of both crayfish species. Together, these findings suggest that the brain photoreceptor cells can function as extraretinal circadian photoreceptors and that the BPN represents part of an entrainment pathway synchronizing locomotor activity to environmental light/dark cycles, and implicating the neuropeptide PDH in these

  12. Differential targeting of feline photoreceptors by recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors: implications for preclinical gene therapy trials.

    PubMed

    Minella, A L; Mowat, F M; Willett, K L; Sledge, D; Bartoe, J T; Bennett, J; Petersen-Jones, S M

    2014-10-01

    The cat is emerging as a promising large animal model for preclinical testing of retinal dystrophy therapies, for example, by gene therapy. However, there is a paucity of studies investigating viral vector gene transfer to the feline retina. We therefore sought to study the tropism of recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) vectors for the feline outer retina. We delivered four rAAV serotypes: rAAV2/2, rAAV2/5, rAAV2/8 and rAAV2/9, each expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of a cytomegalovirus promoter, to the subretinal space in cats and, for comparison, mice. Cats were monitored for gene expression by in vivo imaging and cellular tropism was determined using immunohistochemistry. In cats, rAAV2/2, rAAV2/8 and rAAV2/9 vectors induced faster and stronger GFP expression than rAAV2/5 and all vectors transduced the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and photoreceptors. Unlike in mice, cone photoreceptors in the cat retina were more efficiently transduced than rod photoreceptors. In mice, rAAV2/2 only transduced the RPE whereas the other vectors also transduced rods and cones. These results highlight species differences in cellular tropism of rAAV vectors in the outer retina. We conclude that rAAV serotypes are suitable for use for retinal gene therapy in feline models, particularly when cone photoreceptors are the target cell.

  13. Kinesin-2 Family Motors in the Unusual Photoreceptor Cilium

    PubMed Central

    Malicki, Jarema; Besharse, Joseph C.

    2012-01-01

    This review focuses on recent advances in the understanding of kinesin-2 family motors in vertebrate photoreceptor development. Zebrafish photoreceptors develop by the 3rd day of embryogenesis, making it possible to study mutant phenotypes without the use of conditional alleles. Recent work using a zebrafish kif3b mutant allele validates the concept that the heterotrimeric kinesin II motor is generally required for ciliogenesis. In zebrafish photoreceptors, however, loss of kif3b function delays but does not block cilium formation. This is thought to occur because both kif3b or kif3c can dimerize with kif3a and function redundantly. The second ciliary kinesin thought to function in photoreceptor cells is kif17. Prior work has shown that either morpholino knockdown of this gene or the overexpression of its dominant negative form can reduce or delay photoreceptor cilium development without any evident impact on ciliogenesis in general. This has led to the idea that kif17 may play an important role only in some specialized cilium types, such the one in photoreceptor cells. In a recently identified kif17 mutant, however, photoreceptor outer segments are formed by 5 dpf and an obvious delay of outer segment formation is seen only at the earliest stage analyzed (3 dpf). This work suggests that kif17 plays a significant role mainly at an early stage of photoreceptor development. Taken together, these studies lead to an intriguing concept that as they differentiate photoreceptors alter their kinesin repertoire. PMID:23123805

  14. Differentiation of human embryonic stem cells into cone photoreceptors through simultaneous inhibition of BMP, TGFβ and Wnt signaling.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Shufeng; Flamier, Anthony; Abdouh, Mohamed; Tétreault, Nicolas; Barabino, Andrea; Wadhwa, Shashi; Bernier, Gilbert

    2015-10-01

    Cone photoreceptors are required for color discrimination and high-resolution central vision and are lost in macular degenerations, cone and cone/rod dystrophies. Cone transplantation could represent a therapeutic solution. However, an abundant source of human cones remains difficult to obtain. Work performed in model organisms suggests that anterior neural cell fate is induced 'by default' if BMP, TGFβ and Wnt activities are blocked, and that photoreceptor genesis operates through an S-cone default pathway. We report here that Coco (Dand5), a member of the Cerberus gene family, is expressed in the developing and adult mouse retina. Upon exposure to recombinant COCO, human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) differentiated into S-cone photoreceptors, developed an inner segment-like protrusion, and could degrade cGMP when exposed to light. Addition of thyroid hormone resulted in a transition from a unique S-cone population toward a mixed M/S-cone population. When cultured at confluence for a prolonged period of time, COCO-exposed hESCs spontaneously developed into a cellular sheet composed of polarized cone photoreceptors. COCO showed dose-dependent and synergistic activity with IGF1 at blocking BMP/TGFβ/Wnt signaling, while its cone-inducing activity was blocked in a dose-dependent manner by exposure to BMP, TGFβ or Wnt-related proteins. Our work thus provides a unique platform to produce human cones for developmental, biochemical and therapeutic studies and supports the hypothesis that photoreceptor differentiation operates through an S-cone default pathway during human retinal development. PMID:26443633

  15. Differentiation of human embryonic stem cells into cone photoreceptors through simultaneous inhibition of BMP, TGFβ and Wnt signaling.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Shufeng; Flamier, Anthony; Abdouh, Mohamed; Tétreault, Nicolas; Barabino, Andrea; Wadhwa, Shashi; Bernier, Gilbert

    2015-10-01

    Cone photoreceptors are required for color discrimination and high-resolution central vision and are lost in macular degenerations, cone and cone/rod dystrophies. Cone transplantation could represent a therapeutic solution. However, an abundant source of human cones remains difficult to obtain. Work performed in model organisms suggests that anterior neural cell fate is induced 'by default' if BMP, TGFβ and Wnt activities are blocked, and that photoreceptor genesis operates through an S-cone default pathway. We report here that Coco (Dand5), a member of the Cerberus gene family, is expressed in the developing and adult mouse retina. Upon exposure to recombinant COCO, human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) differentiated into S-cone photoreceptors, developed an inner segment-like protrusion, and could degrade cGMP when exposed to light. Addition of thyroid hormone resulted in a transition from a unique S-cone population toward a mixed M/S-cone population. When cultured at confluence for a prolonged period of time, COCO-exposed hESCs spontaneously developed into a cellular sheet composed of polarized cone photoreceptors. COCO showed dose-dependent and synergistic activity with IGF1 at blocking BMP/TGFβ/Wnt signaling, while its cone-inducing activity was blocked in a dose-dependent manner by exposure to BMP, TGFβ or Wnt-related proteins. Our work thus provides a unique platform to produce human cones for developmental, biochemical and therapeutic studies and supports the hypothesis that photoreceptor differentiation operates through an S-cone default pathway during human retinal development.

  16. Adaptation to background light enables contrast coding at rod bipolar cell synapses.

    PubMed

    Ke, Jiang-Bin; Wang, Yanbin V; Borghuis, Bart G; Cembrowski, Mark S; Riecke, Hermann; Kath, William L; Demb, Jonathan B; Singer, Joshua H

    2014-01-22

    Rod photoreceptors contribute to vision over an ∼ 6-log-unit range of light intensities. The wide dynamic range of rod vision is thought to depend upon light intensity-dependent switching between two parallel pathways linking rods to ganglion cells: a rodrod bipolar (RB) cell pathway that operates at dim backgrounds and a rod → cone → cone bipolar cell pathway that operates at brighter backgrounds. We evaluated this conventional model of rod vision by recording rod-mediated light responses from ganglion and AII amacrine cells and by recording RB-mediated synaptic currents from AII amacrine cells in mouse retina. Contrary to the conventional model, we found that the RB pathway functioned at backgrounds sufficient to activate the rod → cone pathway. As background light intensity increased, the RB's role changed from encoding the absorption of single photons to encoding contrast modulations around mean luminance. This transition is explained by the intrinsic dynamics of transmission from RB synapses.

  17. 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.

  18. Rod sequence advisor

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, R.M. ); Lu, Yi ); Furia, R.V.; Thompson, R.J. ); Lin, Ching-lu )

    1992-01-01

    During startup and power shaping maneuvers of boiling water reactors (BWR's), control rods are sequentially withdrawn from the reactor core. The withdrawal sequences determine the overall reactor power and the local core power density and are based on the knowledge of station engineers. It is important that the control rods are withdrawn in such a manner that the local power level does not become excessive while the desired reactor power is generated. Rules that constrain the relative positions of control rod groups have been developed to do this. While these rules are relatively simple, applying them to all possible movements of the 17 control rod groups in a typical BWR is complex and time consuming. SMARTRODS, is a rule based pilot expert system, was developed in LISP for the determination of the rod sequences.

  19. Postembryonic developmental changes in photoreceptors of the stick insect Carausius morosus enhance the shift to an adult nocturnal life-style.

    PubMed

    Frolov, Roman; Immonen, Esa-Ville; Vähäsöyrinki, Mikko; Weckström, Matti

    2012-11-21

    Optimization of sensory processing during development can be studied by using photoreceptors of hemimetabolous insects (with incomplete metamorphosis) as a research model. We have addressed this topic in the stick insect Carausius morosus, where retinal growth after hatching is accompanied by a diurnal-to-nocturnal shift in behavior, by recording from photoreceptors of first instar nymphs and adult animals using the patch-clamp method. In the nymphs, ommatidia were smaller and photoreceptors were on average 15-fold less sensitive to light than in adults. The magnitude of A-type K(+) current did not increase but the delayed rectifier doubled in adults compared with nymphs, the K(+) current densities being greater in the nymphs. By contrast, the density of light-induced current did not increase, although its magnitude increased 8.6-fold, probably due to the growth of microvilli. Nymph photoreceptors performed poorly, demonstrating a peak information rate (IR) of 2.9 ± 0.7 bits/s versus 34.1 ± 5.0 bits/s in adults in response to white-noise stimulation. Strong correlations were found between photoreceptor capacitance (a proxy for cell size) and IR, and between light sensitivity and IR, with larger and more sensitive photoreceptors performing better. In adults, IR peaked at light intensities matching irradiation from the evening sky. Our results indicate that biophysical properties of photoreceptors at each age stage and visual behavior are interdependent and that developmental improvement in photoreceptor performance may facilitate the switch from the diurnal to the safer nocturnal lifestyle. This also has implications for how photoreceptors achieve optimal performance. PMID:23175835

  20. Modal content of living human cone photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhuolin; Kocaoglu, Omer P.; Turner, Timothy L.; Miller, Donald T.

    2015-01-01

    Decades of experimental and theoretical investigations have established that photoreceptors capture light based on the principles of optical waveguiding. Yet considerable uncertainty remains, even for the most basic prediction as to whether photoreceptors support more than a single waveguide mode. To test for modal behavior in human cone photoreceptors in the near infrared, we took advantage of adaptive-optics optical coherence tomography (AO-OCT, λc = 785 nm) to noninvasively image in three dimensions the reflectance profile of cones. Modal content of reflections generated at the cone inner segment and outer segment junction (IS/OS) and cone outer segment tip (COST) was examined over a range of cone diameters in 1,802 cones from 0.6° to 10° retinal eccentricity. Second moment analysis in conjunction with theoretical predictions indicate cone IS and OS have optical properties consistent of waveguides, which depend on segment diameter and refractive index. Cone IS was found to support a single mode near the fovea (≤3°) and multiple modes further away (>4°). In contrast, no evidence of multiple modes was found in the cone OSs. The IS/OS and COST reflections share a common optical aperture, are most circular near the fovea, show no orientation preference, and are temporally stable. We tested mode predictions of a conventional step-index fiber model and found that in order to fit our AO-OCT results required a lower estimate of the IS refractive index and introduction of an IS focusing/tapering effect. PMID:26417509

  1. Topographical regulation of cone and rod opsin genes: parallel, position dependent levels of transcription.

    PubMed

    van Ginkel, P R; Timmers, A M; Szél, A; Hauswirth, W W

    1995-10-27

    RNase protection assays were used to follow rhodopsin and red cone opsin mRNA levels during bovine fetal development as a function of retinal position. Following induction, an equivalent radial gradient of rod and cone opsin mRNA is present in the fetal retina. This gradient is maintained in the adult retina even though no corresponding gradient in rod or cone cell density is present. Since the mRNA expression gradient does not progress radially, position dependent levels of photoreceptor-specific transcription is suggested.

  2. Understanding Cone Photoreceptor Cell Death in Achromatopsia.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Livia S; Vandenberghe, Luk H

    2016-01-01

    Colour vision is only achieved in the presence of healthy and functional cone photoreceptors found in the retina. It is an essential component of human vision and usually the first complaint patients undergoing vision degeneration have is the loss of daylight colour vision. Therefore, an understanding of the biology and basic mechanisms behind cone death under the degenerative state of retinal dystrophies and how the activation of the apoptotic pathway is triggered will provide valuable knowledge. It will also have broader applications for a spectrum of visual disorders and will be critical for future advances in translational research. PMID:26427416

  3. A neuronal circuit for colour vision based on rod-cone opponency.

    PubMed

    Joesch, Maximilian; Meister, Markus

    2016-04-14

    In bright light, cone-photoreceptors are active and colour vision derives from a comparison of signals in cones with different visual pigments. This comparison begins in the retina, where certain retinal ganglion cells have 'colour-opponent' visual responses-excited by light of one colour and suppressed by another colour. In dim light, rod-photoreceptors are active, but colour vision is impossible because they all use the same visual pigment. Instead, the rod signals are thought to splice into retinal circuits at various points, in synergy with the cone signals. Here we report a new circuit for colour vision that challenges these expectations. A genetically identified type of mouse retinal ganglion cell called JAMB (J-RGC), was found to have colour-opponent responses, OFF to ultraviolet (UV) light and ON to green light. Although the mouse retina contains a green-sensitive cone, the ON response instead originates in rods. Rods and cones both contribute to the response over several decades of light intensity. Remarkably, the rod signal in this circuit is antagonistic to that from cones. For rodents, this UV-green channel may play a role in social communication, as suggested by spectral measurements from the environment. In the human retina, all of the components for this circuit exist as well, and its function can explain certain experiences of colour in dim lights, such as a 'blue shift' in twilight. The discovery of this genetically defined pathway will enable new targeted studies of colour processing in the brain.

  4. The Role of Intraflagellar Transport in the Photoreceptor Sensory Cilium.

    PubMed

    Taub, Daniel G; Liu, Qin

    2016-01-01

    The photoreceptor is a complex specialized cell in which a major component responsible for visual transduction is the photoreceptor sensory cilium (PSC). Building and maintenance of the PSC requires the transport of large proteins along microtubules that extend from the inner segments to the outer segments. A key process, termed intraflagellar transport (IFT), has been recognized as an essential phenomenon for photoreceptor development and maintenance, and exciting new studies have highlighted its importance in retinal and cilia related diseases. This review focuses on the important roles of IFT players, including motor proteins, IFT proteins, and photoreceptor-specific cargos in photoreceptor sensory cilium. In addition, specific IFT components that are involved in inherited human diseases are discussed.

  5. Long-term preservation of cone photoreceptors and visual acuity in rd10 mutant mice exposed to continuous environmental enrichment

    PubMed Central

    Strettoi, Enrica

    2014-01-01

    Purpose In human patients and animal models of retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a gradual loss of rod photoreceptors and decline in scotopic vision are the primary manifestations of the disease. Secondary death of cones and gradual, regressive remodeling of the inner retina follow and progress at different speeds according to the underlying genetic defect. In any case, the final outcome is near-blindness without a conclusive cure yet. We recently reported that environmental enrichment (EE), an experimental manipulation based on exposure to enhanced motor, sensory, and social stimulation, when started at birth, exerts clear beneficial effects on a mouse model of RP, by slowing vision loss. The purpose of this study was to investigate in the same mouse the long-term effects of chronic exposure to an EE and assess the outcome of this manipulation on cone survival, inner retinal preservation, and visual behavior. Methods Two groups of rd10 mutant mice were maintained in an EE or standard (ST) laboratory conditions up to 1 year of age. Then, retinal preservation was assessed with immunocytochemistry, confocal microscopy examination, cone counts, and electron microscopy of the photoreceptor layer, while visual acuity was tested behaviorally with a Prusky water maze. Results rd10 mice are a model of autosomal recessive RP with a typical rod-cone, center to the periphery pattern of photoreceptor degeneration. They carry a mutation of the rod-specific phosphodiesterase gene and undergo rod death that peaks at around P24, while cone electroretinogram (ERG) is extinct by P60. We previously showed that early exposure to an EE efficiently delays photoreceptor degeneration in these mutants, extending the time window of cone viability and cone-mediated vision well beyond the phase of maximum rod death. Here we find that a maintained EE can delay the degeneration of cones even in the long term. Confocal and electron microscopy examination of the retinas of the rd10 EE and ST mice at 1

  6. HCN1 Channels Enhance Rod System Responsivity in the Retina under Conditions of Light Exposure

    PubMed Central

    Sothilingam, Vithiyanjali; Michalakis, Stylianos; Garcia Garrido, Marina; Biel, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Vision originates in rods and cones at the outer retina. Already at these early stages, diverse processing schemes shape and enhance image information to permit perception over a wide range of lighting conditions. In this work, we address the role of hyperpolarization-activated and cyclic nucleotide-gated channels 1 (HCN1) in rod photoreceptors for the enhancement of rod system responsivity under conditions of light exposure. Methods To isolate HCN1 channel actions in rod system responses, we generated double mutant mice by crossbreeding Hcn1-/- mice with Cnga3-/- mice in which cones are non-functional. Retinal function in the resulting Hcn1-/- Cnga3-/- animals was followed by means of electroretinography (ERG) up to the age of four month. Retinal imaging via scanning laser ophthalmoscopy (SLO) and optical coherence tomography (OCT) was also performed to exclude potential morphological alterations. Results This study on Hcn1-/- Cnga3-/- mutant mice complements our previous work on HCN1 channel function in the retina. We show here in a functional rod-only setting that rod responses following bright light exposure terminate without the counteraction of HCN channels much later than normal. The resulting sustained signal elevation does saturate the retinal network due to an intensity-dependent reduction in the dynamic range. In addition, the lack of rapid adaptational feedback modulation of rod photoreceptor output via HCN1 in this double mutant limits the ability to follow repetitive (flicker) stimuli, particularly under mesopic conditions. Conclusions This work corroborates the hypothesis that, in the absence of HCN1-mediated feedback, the amplitude of rod signals remains at high levels for a prolonged period of time, leading to saturation of the retinal pathways. Our results demonstrate the importance of HCN1 channels for regular vision. PMID:26807953

  7. Co-expression of three opsins in cone photoreceptors of the salamander, Ambystoma tigrinum

    PubMed Central

    Isayama, Tomoki; Chen, Ying; Kono, Masahiro; Fabre, Eduard; Slavsky, Michael; DeGrip, Willem J.; Ma, Jian-Xing; Crouch, Rosalie K.; Makino, Clint L.

    2014-01-01

    Whereas more than one type of visual opsin is present in the retina of most vertebrates, it was thought that each type of photoreceptor expressed only one opsin. However, evidence has accumulated that some photoreceptors contain more than one opsin, in many cases as a result of a developmental transition from the expression of one opsin to another. The salamander UV-sensitive (UV) cone is particularly notable because it contains three opsins (Makino and Dodd, 1996; J Gen Physiol 108:27–34). Two opsin types are expressed at levels more than a hundred times lower than that of the primary opsin. Here, immunohistochemical experiments identified the primary component as a UV cone opsin and the two minor components as the short wavelength-sensitive (S) and long wavelength-sensitive (L) cone opsins. Based on single cell recordings of 156 photoreceptors, the presence of three components in UV cones of hatchlings and terrestrial adults ruled out a developmental transition. There was no evidence for multiple opsin types within rods or S cones. But immunohistochemistry and partial bleaching in conjunction with single cell recording revealed that both single and double L cones contained low levels of short wavelength-sensitive pigments in addition to the main L visual pigment. These results raise the possibility that co-expression of multiple opsins in other vertebrates was overlooked because a minor component absorbing at short wavelengths was masked by the main visual pigment or because the expression level of a component absorbing at long wavelengths was exceedingly low. PMID:24374736

  8. Coexpression of three opsins in cone photoreceptors of the salamander Ambystoma tigrinum.

    PubMed

    Isayama, Tomoki; Chen, Ying; Kono, Masahiro; Fabre, Eduard; Slavsky, Michael; DeGrip, Willem J; Ma, Jian-Xing; Crouch, Rosalie K; Makino, Clint L

    2014-07-01

    Although more than one type of visual opsin is present in the retina of most vertebrates, it was thought that each type of photoreceptor expresses only one opsin. However, evidence has accumulated that some photoreceptors contain more than one opsin, in many cases as a result of a developmental transition from the expression of one opsin to another. The salamander UV-sensitive (UV) cone is particularly notable because it contains three opsins (Makino and Dodd [1996] J Gen Physiol 108:27-34). Two opsin types are expressed at levels more than 100 times lower than the level of the primary opsin. Here, immunohistochemical experiments identified the primary component as a UV cone opsin and the two minor components as the short wavelength-sensitive (S) and long wavelength-sensitive (L) cone opsins. Based on single-cell recordings of 156 photoreceptors, the presence of three components in UV cones of hatchlings and terrestrial adults ruled out a developmental transition. There was no evidence for multiple opsin types within rods or S cones, but immunohistochemistry and partial bleaching in conjunction with single-cell recording revealed that both single and double L cones contained low levels of short wavelength-sensitive pigments in addition to the main L visual pigment. These results raise the possibility that coexpression of multiple opsins in other vertebrates was overlooked because a minor component absorbing at short wavelengths was masked by the main visual pigment or because the expression level of a component absorbing at long wavelengths was exceedingly low. PMID:24374736

  9. Thyroid Hormone Signaling and Cone Photoreceptor Viability.

    PubMed

    Ma, Hongwei; Ding, Xi-Qin

    2016-01-01

    Thyroid hormone (TH) signaling regulates cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. In the retina, TH signaling plays a central role in cone opsin expression. TH signaling inhibits S opsin expression, stimulates M opsin expression, and promotes dorsal-ventral opsin patterning. TH signaling has also been associated with cone photoreceptor viability. Treatment with thyroid hormone triiodothyronine (T3) or induction of high T3 by deleting the hormone-inactivating enzyme type 3 iodothyronine deiodinase (DIO3) causes cone death in mice. This effect is reversed by deletion of the TH receptor (TR) gene. Consistent with the T3 treatment effect, suppressing TH signaling preserves cones in mouse models of retinal degeneration. The regulation of cone survival by TH signaling appears to be independent of its regulatory role in cone opsin expression. The mechanism by which TH signaling regulates cone viability remains to be identified. The current understanding of TH signaling regulation in photoreceptor viability suggests that suppressing TH signaling locally in the retina may represent a novel strategy for retinal degeneration management. PMID:26427466

  10. Internal dialysis of Limulus ventral photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Stern, J H; Lisman, J E

    1982-01-01

    The internal dialysis technique has been applied to Limulus ventral photoreceptors. This method potentially allows quantitative control of the concentration of diffusible molecules within living cells. During dialysis, Limulus photoreceptors retained their ability to respond to light. Under conditions of dim illumination, responses were normal for close to an hour. In bright light, abnormalities developed more rapidly. The reversible effects of raising the dialysate Mg2+ concentration and the entrance of rhodamine-labeled albumin into cells shows that the dialysis method is useful for assaying the effects of small or large molecules on visual transduction. This method has been used to examine the effects of nucleotide triphosphates and cyclic nucleotides. The results show that nucleotide triphosphates (5-10 mM) are required to maintain a low rate of spontaneous quantum bumps. The importance of cyclic nucleotides in transduction is less clear; the light response was reduced by either cGMP or cAMP but only at very high concentrations (10 mM). Images PMID:6961434

  11. 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.

  12. Transition of differential histone H3 methylation in photoreceptors and other retinal cells during retinal differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Ueno, Kazuko; Iwagawa, Toshiro; Kuribayashi, Hiroshi; Baba, Yukihiro; Nakauchi, Hiromitsu; Murakami, Akira; Nagasaki, Masao; Suzuki, Yutaka; Watanabe, Sumiko

    2016-01-01

    To analyze cell lineage-specific transitions in global transcriptional and epigenetic changes during retinogenesis, we purified retinal cells from normal mice during postnatal development into two fractions, namely, photoreceptors and other retinal cells, based on Cd73 expression, and performed RNA sequencing and ChIP sequencing of H3K27me3 and H3K4me3. Genes expressed in the photoreceptor lineage were marked with H3K4me3 in the Cd73-positive cell fraction; however, the level of H3K27me3 was very low in both Cd73-positive and -negative populations. H3K27me3 may be involved in spatio-temporal onset of a subset of bipolar-related genes. Subsets of genes expressed in amacrine and retinal ganglion cells, which are early-born retinal cell types, were suggested to be maintained in a silent state by H3K27me3 during late-stage retinogenesis. In the outer nuclear layer, upregulation of Rho and rod-related genes were observed in Ezh2-ablated retina, suggesting a role for H3K27me3 in the maintenance of proper expression levels. Taken together, our data on the transition of lineage-specific molecular signatures during development suggest that histone methylation is involved in retinal differentiation and maintenance through cell lineage-specific mechanisms. PMID:27377164

  13. Targeted inactivation of synaptic HRG4(UNC119) causes dysfunction in the distal photoreceptor and slow retinal degeneration, revealing a new function

    PubMed Central

    Ishiba, Yasutsugu; Higashide, Tomomi; Mori, Naoki; Kobayashi, Akira; Kutobta, Shinya; McLaren, Margaret J.; Satoh, Hiromasa; Wong, Fulton; Inana, George

    2007-01-01

    HRG4(UNC119) is a photoreceptor protein predominantly localized to the photoreceptor synapses and to the inner segments to a lesser degree. A heterozygous truncation mutation in HRG4 was found in a patient with late onset cone-rod dystrophy, and a transgenic (TG) mouse expressing the identical mutant protein developed late onset retinal degeneration, confirming the pathogenic potential of HRG4. Recently, the dominant negative pathogenic mechanism in the TG model was shown to involve increased affinity of the truncated mutant HRG4 for its target, ARL2, which leads to a delayed decrease in its downstream target, mitochondrial ANT1, mitochondrial stress, synaptic degeneration, trans-synaptic degeneration, and whole photoreceptor degeneration by apoptosis. In this study, the mouse HRG4 (MRG4) gene was cloned and targeted to construct a knock-out (KO) mouse model of HRG4 in order to study the effects of completely inactivating this protein. The KO model was examined by genomic Southern blotting, western blotting, immunofluorescence, funduscopy, LM and EM histopathology, ERG, and TUNEL analyses. The KO model developed a slowly progressive retinal degeneration, characterized by mottling in the fundus, mild thinning of the photoreceptor layer, and increase in apoptosis as early as 6 months, dramatic acceleration at ~17 months, and virtual obliteration of the photoreceptors by 20 months. When compared to retinal degeneration in the TG model, significant differences existed in the KO consisting of more severe and early photoreceptor death without evidence of early synaptic and trans-synaptic degeneration as seen in the TG, confirmed by LM and EM histopathology, ERG, and western blotting of synaptic proteins. The results indicated a dysfunction in the KO outside the synapses in the distal end of photoreceptors where MRG4 is also localized. Differences in the phenotypes of retinal degeneration in the KO and TG models reflect a dysfunction in the two opposite ends of

  14. Sustained protection against photoreceptor degeneration in tubby mice by intravitreal injection of nanoceria.

    PubMed

    Cai, Xue; Sezate, Steven A; Seal, Sudipta; McGinnis, James F

    2012-12-01

    We previously reported that nanoceria can slow retinal degeneration in the tubby mouse for two weeks by multiple systemic injections. However, the long-term protection of retinal structure and function by directly deliver of nanoceria to the eye had not been explored. In this study, 172 ng of nanoceria in 1 μl saline (1 mm) were intravitreally injected into tubby P7 pups and assays were performed at P28, P49, P80 and P120. The expression of antioxidant associated genes and photoreceptor-specific genes was significantly up regulated, the mislocalization of rod and cone opsins was decreased, and retinal structure and function were protected. These findings demonstrate that nanoceria can function as catalytic antioxidants in vivo and may be broad spectrum therapeutic agents for multiple types of ocular diseases.

  15. Understanding photoreceptor outer segment phagocytosis: use and utility of RPE cells in culture.

    PubMed

    Mazzoni, Francesca; Safa, Hussein; Finnemann, Silvia C

    2014-09-01

    RPE cells are the most actively phagocytic cells in the human body. In the eye, RPE cells face rod and cone photoreceptor outer segments at all times but contribute to shedding and clearance phagocytosis of distal outer segment tips only once a day. Analysis of RPE phagocytosis in situ has succeeded in identifying key players of the RPE phagocytic mechanism. Phagocytic processes comprise three distinct phases, recognition/binding, internalization, and digestion, each of which is regulated separately by phagocytes. Studies of phagocytosis by RPE cells in culture allow specifically analyzing and manipulating these distinct phases to identify their molecular mechanisms. Here, we compare similarities and differences of primary, immortalized, and stem cell-derived RPE cells in culture to RPE cells in situ with respect to phagocytic function. We discuss in particular potential pitfalls of RPE cell culture phagocytosis assays. Finally, we point out considerations for phagocytosis assay development for future studies.

  16. A simple retinal mechanism contributes to perceptual interactions between rod- and cone-mediated responses in primates.

    PubMed

    Grimes, William N; Graves, Logan R; Summers, Mathew T; Rieke, Fred

    2015-01-01

    Visual perception across a broad range of light levels is shaped by interactions between rod- and cone-mediated signals. Because responses of retinal ganglion cells, the output cells of the retina, depend on signals from both rod and cone photoreceptors, interactions occurring in retinal circuits provide an opportunity to link the mechanistic operation of parallel pathways and perception. Here we show that rod- and cone-mediated responses interact nonlinearly to control the responses of primate retinal ganglion cells; these nonlinear interactions, surprisingly, were asymmetric, with rod responses strongly suppressing subsequent cone responses but not vice-versa. Human psychophysical experiments revealed a similar perceptual asymmetry. Nonlinear interactions in the retinal output cells were well-predicted by linear summation of kinetically-distinct rod- and cone-mediated signals followed by a synaptic nonlinearity. These experiments thus reveal how a simple mechanism controlling interactions between parallel pathways shapes circuit output and perception. PMID:26098124

  17. Flexible sucker rod unit

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, L.F.

    1987-02-03

    This patent describes a deep well having: a. an education tube with an inside diameter extending from the surface of the earth to far below the surface, b. a reciprocating pump housing attached to the bottom of the education tube, c. pump jack means at the surface for reciprocating the pump, d. a light sucker rod connected to the pump jack means and extending into the education tube, and e. a series of heavy sinker bars having a large cross sectional area in the education tube connecting the light sucker rod to the pump; f. an improved integral metal flexible rod unit interconnecting the sinker bars comprising in combination with the above: g. a coupling on each end of the integral metal flexible rod unit connecting the flexible rod unit to the contiguous sinker bar, h. a segment which is flexible as compared to the sinker bars connecting one of the couplings to i. an integral metal bearing adjacent to the other of the couplings, the bearing having j. a cylindrical surface with k. a diameter i. only slightly smaller than the inside diameter of the education tube thereby forming a sliding fit therewith, and ii. greater than the diameter of any other portion of the flexible rod unit and the sinker bar, and l. grooves in the cylindrical surface for the passage of fluid between in the education tube around the bearing.

  18. Identification of the Photoreceptor Transcriptional Co-Repressor SAMD11 as Novel Cause of Autosomal Recessive Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Corton, M.; Avila-Fernández, A.; Campello, L.; Sánchez, M.; Benavides, B.; López-Molina, M. I.; Fernández-Sánchez, L.; Sánchez-Alcudia, R.; da Silva, L. R. J.; Reyes, N.; Martín-Garrido, E.; Zurita, O.; Fernández-San José, P.; Pérez-Carro, R.; García-García, F.; Dopazo, J.; García-Sandoval, B.; Cuenca, N.; Ayuso, C.

    2016-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP), the most frequent form of inherited retinal dystrophy is characterized by progressive photoreceptor degeneration. Many genes have been implicated in RP development, but several others remain to be identified. Using a combination of homozygosity mapping, whole-exome and targeted next-generation sequencing, we found a novel homozygous nonsense mutation in SAMD11 in five individuals diagnosed with adult-onset RP from two unrelated consanguineous Spanish families. SAMD11 is ortholog to the mouse major retinal SAM domain (mr-s) protein that is implicated in CRX-mediated transcriptional regulation in the retina. Accordingly, protein-protein network analysis revealed a significant interaction of SAMD11 with CRX. Immunoblotting analysis confirmed strong expression of SAMD11 in human retina. Immunolocalization studies revealed SAMD11 was detected in the three nuclear layers of the human retina and interestingly differential expression between cone and rod photoreceptors was observed. Our study strongly implicates SAMD11 as novel cause of RP playing an important role in the pathogenesis of human degeneration of photoreceptors. PMID:27734943

  19. Luminescence- and nanoparticle-mediated increase of light absorption by photoreceptor cells: Converting UV light to visible light

    PubMed Central

    Li, Lei; Sahi, Sunil K.; Peng, Mingying; Lee, Eric B.; Ma, Lun; Wojtowicz, Jennifer L.; Malin, John H.; Chen, Wei

    2016-01-01

    We developed new optic devices – singly-doped luminescence glasses and nanoparticle-coated lenses that convert UV light to visible light – for improvement of visual system functions. Tb3+ or Eu3+ singly-doped borate glasses or CdS-quantum dot (CdS-QD) coated lenses efficiently convert UV light to 542 nm or 613 nm wavelength narrow-band green or red light, or wide-spectrum white light, and thereby provide extra visible light to the eye. In zebrafish (wild-type larvae and adult control animals, retinal degeneration mutants, and light-induced photoreceptor cell degeneration models), the use of Tb3+ or Eu3+ doped luminescence glass or CdS-QD coated glass lenses provide additional visible light to the rod and cone photoreceptor cells, and thereby improve the visual system functions. The data provide proof-of-concept for the future development of optic devices for improvement of visual system functions in patients who suffer from photoreceptor cell degeneration or related retinal diseases. PMID:26860393

  20. Luminescence- and nanoparticle-mediated increase of light absorption by photoreceptor cells: Converting UV light to visible light.

    PubMed

    Li, Lei; Sahi, Sunil K; Peng, Mingying; Lee, Eric B; Ma, Lun; Wojtowicz, Jennifer L; Malin, John H; Chen, Wei

    2016-02-10

    We developed new optic devices - singly-doped luminescence glasses and nanoparticle-coated lenses that convert UV light to visible light - for improvement of visual system functions. Tb(3+) or Eu(3+) singly-doped borate glasses or CdS-quantum dot (CdS-QD) coated lenses efficiently convert UV light to 542 nm or 613 nm wavelength narrow-band green or red light, or wide-spectrum white light, and thereby provide extra visible light to the eye. In zebrafish (wild-type larvae and adult control animals, retinal degeneration mutants, and light-induced photoreceptor cell degeneration models), the use of Tb(3+) or Eu(3+) doped luminescence glass or CdS-QD coated glass lenses provide additional visible light to the rod and cone photoreceptor cells, and thereby improve the visual system functions. The data provide proof-of-concept for the future development of optic devices for improvement of visual system functions in patients who suffer from photoreceptor cell degeneration or related retinal diseases.

  1. CNTF-mediated protection of photoreceptors requires initial activation of the cytokine receptor gp130 in Müller glial cells

    PubMed Central

    Rhee, Kun Do; Nusinowitz, Steven; Chao, Kevin; Yu, Fei; Bok, Dean; Yang, Xian-Jie

    2013-01-01

    Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) acts as a potent neuroprotective agent in multiple retinal degeneration animal models. Recently, CNTF has been evaluated in clinical trials for the inherited degenerative disease retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and for dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Despite its potential as a broad-spectrum therapeutic treatment for blinding diseases, the target cells of exogenous CNTF and its mechanism of action remain poorly understood. We have shown previously that constitutive expression of CNTF prevents photoreceptor death but alters the retinal transcriptome and suppresses visual function. Here, we use a lentivirus to deliver the same secreted human CNTF used in clinical trials to a mouse model of RP. We found that low levels of CNTF halt photoreceptor death, improve photoreceptor morphology, and correct opsin mislocalization. However, we did not detect corresponding improvement of retinal function as measured by the electroretinogram. Disruption of the cytokine receptor gp130 gene in Müller glia reduces CNTF-dependent photoreceptor survival and prevents phosphorylation of STAT3 and ERK in Müller glia and the rest of the retina. Targeted deletion of gp130 in rods also demolishes neuroprotection by CNTF and prevents further activation of Müller glia. Moreover, CNTF elevates the expression of LIF and endothelin 2, thus positively promoting Müller and photoreceptor interactions. We propose that exogenous CNTF initially targets Müller glia, and subsequently induces cytokines acting through gp130 in photoreceptors to promote neuronal survival. These results elucidate a cellular mechanism for exogenous CNTF-triggered neuroprotection and provide insight into the complex cellular responses induced by CNTF in diseased retinas. PMID:24191003

  2. Limited ATF4 Expression in Degenerating Retinas with Ongoing ER Stress Promotes Photoreceptor Survival in a Mouse Model of Autosomal Dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Bhootada, Yogesh; Kotla, Pravallika; Zolotukhin, Sergei; Gorbatyuk, Oleg; Bebok, Zsuzsanna; Athar, Mohammad; Gorbatyuk, Marina

    2016-01-01

    T17M rhodopsin expression in rod photoreceptors leads to severe retinal degeneration and is associated with the activation of ER stress related Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) signaling. Here, we show a novel role of a UPR transcription factor, ATF4, in photoreceptor cellular pathology. We demonstrated a pro-death role for ATF4 overexpression during autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (ADRP). Based on our results in ATF4 knockout mice and adeno-associated viral (AAV) delivery of ATF4 to the retina, we validated a novel therapeutic approach targeting ATF4 over the course of retinal degeneration. In T17M rhodopsin retinas, we observed ATF4 overexpression concomitantly with reduction of p62 and elevation of p53 levels. These molecular alterations, together with increased CHOP and caspase-3/7 activity, possibly contributed to the mechanism of photoreceptor cell loss. Conversely, ATF4 knockdown retarded retinal degeneration in 1-month-old T17M Rhodopsin mice and promoted photoreceptor survival, as measured by scotopic and photopic ERGs and photoreceptor nuclei row counts. Similarly, ATF4 knockdown also markedly delayed retinal degeneration in 3-month-old ADRP animals. This delay was accompanied by a dramatic decrease in UPR signaling, the launching of anti-oxidant defense, initiation of autophagy, and improvement of rhodopsin biosynthesis which together perhaps combat the cellular stress associated with T17M rhodopsin. Our data indicate that augmented ATF4 signals during retinal degeneration plays a cytotoxic role by triggering photoreceptor cell death. Future ADRP therapy regulating ATF4 expression can be developed to treat retinal degenerative disorders associated with activated UPR. PMID:27144303

  3. Polished rod liner puller assmbly

    SciTech Connect

    Baxter, B.V.

    1990-01-02

    This patent describes a polished rod liner puller assembly operable with a well casing head assembly to remove a polished rod liner member of a polished rod liner assembly from a well. It comprises: a work table assembly operable to be placed around the well casing head assembly and enclose the polished rod liner assembly; a base plate assembly mounted on the work table assembly; a piston and cylinder jack assembly mounted on the base plate assembly and extended upwardly therefrom; and a winged rod clamp assembly connectable to the piston and cylinder jack assembly and to a polished rod member of the polished rod liner assembly and operable on actuation of the piston and cylinder jack assembly to axially move the polished rod member and the polished rod liner member to remove the polished rod liner member from the well.

  4. Photoreceptor cell death and rescue in retinal detachment and degenerations

    PubMed Central

    Murakami, Yusuke; Notomi, Shoji; Hisatomi, Toshio; Nakazawa, Toru; Ishibashi, Tatsuro; Miller, Joan W.; Vavvas, Demetrios G.

    2013-01-01

    Photoreceptor cell death is the ultimate cause of vision loss in various retinal disorders, including retinal detachment (RD). Photoreceptor cell death has been thought to occur mainly through apoptosis, which is the most characterized form of programmed cell death. The caspase family of cysteine proteases plays a central role for inducing apoptosis, and in experimental models of RD, dying photoreceptor cells exhibit caspase activation; however, there is a paradox that caspase inhibition alone does not provide a sufficient protection against photoreceptor cell loss, suggesting that other mechanisms of cell death are involved. Recent accumulating evidence demonstrates that non-apoptotic forms of cell death, such as autophagy and necrosis, are also regulated by specific molecular machinery, such as those mediated by autophagy-related proteins and receptor-interacting protein kinases, respectively. Here we summarize the current knowledge of cell death signaling and its roles in photoreceptor cell death after RD and other retinal degenerative diseases. A body of studies indicate that not only apoptotic but also autophagic and necrotic signaling are involved in photoreceptor cell death, and that combined targeting of these pathways may be an effective neuroprotective strategy for retinal diseases associated with photoreceptor cell loss. PMID:23994436

  5. Ablation of Chop Transiently Enhances Photoreceptor Survival but Does Not Prevent Retinal Degeneration in Transgenic Mice Expressing Human P23H Rhodopsin

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, Wei-Chieh; Joseph, Victory; Matthes, Michael T.; Lewin, Alfred S.; Gorbatyuk, Marina S.; Ahern, Kelly; LaVail, Matthew M.

    2016-01-01

    RHO (Rod opsin) encodes a G-protein coupled receptor that is expressed exclusively by rod photoreceptors of the retina and forms the essential photopigment, rhodopsin, when coupled with 11-cis-retinal. Many rod opsin disease mutations cause rod opsin protein misfolding and trigger endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, leading to activation of the Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) signal transduction network. Chop is a transcriptional activator that is induced by ER stress and promotes cell death in response to chronic ER stress. Here, we examined the role of Chop in transgenic mice expressing human P23H rhodopsin (hP23H Rho Tg) that undergo retinal degeneration. With the exception of one time point, we found no significant induction of Chop in these animals and no significant change in retinal degeneration by histology and electrophysiology when hP23H Rho Tg animals were bred into a Chop−/− background. Our results indicate that Chop does not play a significant causal role during retinal degeneration in these animals. We suggest that other modules of the ER stress-induced UPR signaling network may be involved photoreceptor disease induced by P23H rhodopsin. PMID:26427410

  6. Regulatory perspective on incomplete control rod insertions

    SciTech Connect

    Chatterton, M.

    1997-01-01

    The incomplete control rod insertions experienced at South Texas Unit 1 and Wolf Creek are of safety concern to the NRC staff because they represent potential precursors to loss of shutdown margin. Even before it was determined if these events were caused by the control rods or by the fuel there was an apparent correlation of the problem with high burnup fuel. It was determined that there was also a correlation between high burnup and high drag forces as well as with rod drop time histories and lack of rod recoil. The NRC staff initial actions were aimed at getting a perspective on the magnitude of the problem as far as the number of plants and the amount of fuel that could be involved, as well as the safety significance in terms of shutdown margin. As tests have been performed and data has been analyzed the focus has shifted more toward understanding the problem and the ways to eliminate it. At this time the staff`s understanding of the phenomena is that it was a combination of factors including burnup, power history and temperature. The problem appears to be very sensitive to these factors, the interaction of which is not clearly understood. The model developed by Westinghouse provides a possible explanation but there is not sufficient data to establish confidence levels and sensitivity studies involving the key parameters have not been done. While several fixes to the problem have been discussed, no definitive fixes have been proposed. Without complete understanding of the phenomena, or fixes that clearly eliminate the problem the safety concern remains. The safety significance depends on the amount of shutdown margin lost due to incomplete insertion of the control rods. Were the control rods to stick high in the core, the reactor could not be shutdown by the control rods and other means such as emergency boration would be required.

  7. Successful gene therapy in the RPGRIP1-deficient dog: a large model of cone-rod dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Lhériteau, Elsa; Petit, Lolita; Weber, Michel; Le Meur, Guylène; Deschamps, Jack-Yves; Libeau, Lyse; Mendes-Madeira, Alexandra; Guihal, Caroline; François, Achille; Guyon, Richard; Provost, Nathalie; Lemoine, Françoise; Papal, Samantha; El-Amraoui, Aziz; Colle, Marie-Anne; Moullier, Philippe; Rolling, Fabienne

    2014-02-01

    For the development of new therapies, proof-of-concept studies in large animal models that share clinical features with their human counterparts represent a pivotal step. For inherited retinal dystrophies primarily involving photoreceptor cells, the efficacy of gene therapy has been demonstrated in canine models of stationary cone dystrophies and progressive rod-cone dystrophies but not in large models of progressive cone-rod dystrophies, another important cause of blindness. To address the last issue, we evaluated gene therapy in the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator interacting protein 1 (RPGRIP1)-deficient dog, a model exhibiting a severe cone-rod dystrophy similar to that seen in humans. Subretinal injection of AAV5 (n = 5) or AAV8 (n = 2) encoding the canine Rpgrip1 improved photoreceptor survival in transduced areas of treated retinas. Cone function was significantly and stably rescued in all treated eyes (18-72% of those recorded in normal eyes) up to 24 months postinjection. Rod function was also preserved (22-29% of baseline function) in four of the five treated dogs up to 24 months postinjection. No detectable rod function remained in untreated contralateral eyes. More importantly, treatment preserved bright- and dim-light vision. Efficacy of gene therapy in this large animal model of cone-rod dystrophy provides great promise for human treatment.

  8. Spectral information coding by infrared photoreceptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coon, D. D.; Perera, A. G. U.

    1986-10-01

    Spontaneous pulsing has been observed in circuits containing cryogenically cooled silicon p-i-n (p+-n-n+) diodes under dc forward bias. The intensity of infrared radiation incident on the diodes controls the pulse rate with no appreciable effect on the shape or size of the pulses. A strong similarity is noted between these properties and the nearly universal means of coding of visual information by animal photoreceptors and neural networks. It is proposed that exploitation of this remarkable analogy could lead to radically new approaches to acquisition and processing of infrared optical information. Infrared analogs of neural color coding and color vision are proposed based on analysis of p-i-n spectral response measurements.

  9. Early Retinal Neuronal Dysfunction in Diabetic Mice: Reduced Light-Evoked Inhibition Increases Rod Pathway Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Moore-Dotson, Johnnie M.; Beckman, Jamie J.; Mazade, Reece E.; Hoon, Mrinalini; Bernstein, Adam S.; Romero-Aleshire, Melissa J.; Brooks, Heddwen L.; Eggers, Erika D.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Recent studies suggest that the neural retinal response to light is compromised in diabetes. Electroretinogram studies suggest that the dim light retinal rod pathway is especially susceptible to diabetic damage. The purpose of this study was to determine whether diabetes alters rod pathway signaling. Methods Diabetes was induced in C57BL/6J mice by three intraperitoneal injections of streptozotocin (STZ; 75 mg/kg), and confirmed by blood glucose levels > 200 mg/dL. Six weeks after the first injection, whole-cell voltage clamp recordings of spontaneous and light-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents from rod bipolar cells were made in dark-adapted retinal slices. Light-evoked excitatory currents from rod bipolar and AII amacrine cells, and spontaneous excitatory currents from AII amacrine cells were also measured. Receptor inputs were pharmacologically isolated. Immunohistochemistry was performed on whole mounted retinas. Results Rod bipolar cells had reduced light-evoked inhibitory input from amacrine cells but no change in excitatory input from rod photoreceptors. Reduced light-evoked inhibition, mediated by both GABAA and GABAC receptors, increased rod bipolar cell output onto AII amacrine cells. Spontaneous release of GABA onto rod bipolar cells was increased, which may limit GABA availability for light-evoked release. These physiological changes occurred in the absence of retinal cell loss or changes in GABAA receptor expression levels. Conclusions Our results indicate that early diabetes causes deficits in the rod pathway leading to decreased light-evoked rod bipolar cell inhibition and increased rod pathway output that provide a basis for the development of early diabetic visual deficits. PMID:27028063

  10. UV-B photoreceptor-mediated signalling in plants.

    PubMed

    Heijde, Marc; Ulm, Roman

    2012-04-01

    Ultraviolet-B radiation (UV-B) is a key environmental signal that is specifically perceived by plants to promote UV acclimation and survival in sunlight. Whereas the plant photoreceptors for visible light are rather well characterised, the UV-B photoreceptor UVR8 was only recently described at the molecular level. Here, we review the current understanding of the UVR8 photoreceptor-mediated pathway in the context of UV-B perception mechanism, early signalling components and physiological responses. We further outline the commonalities in UV-B and visible light signalling as well as highlight differences between these pathways.

  11. Local adaptation in the ventral photoreceptors of Limulus

    PubMed Central

    1975-01-01

    Local adaptation was demonstrated in the ventral photoreceptors of Lumulus using either flashes or continuous illumination. Spots of light locally desensitized the region of the photoreceptor on which they were focused. In dark-adapted photoreceptors where "quantum bumps" were clearly discernible, local adaptation of the quantum bumps was observed. Local adaptation could induce differences of threshold of 1 decade over distances of 50-80 mum. With continuous local illumination these gradients could be maintained from 2 s to 30 min. In addition, the decrease in time scale associated with light adaptation was also found to be localized to the region of illumination. PMID:1194890

  12. Nonlinearity and noise at the rod - rod bipolar cell synapse

    PubMed Central

    Trexler, E. Brady; Casti, Alexander R.R.; Zhang, Yu

    2010-01-01

    In the retina, rod bipolar (RBP) cells synapse with many rods, and suppression of rod outer segment and synaptic noise is necessary for their detection of rod single photon responses (SPRs). Depending on the rods’ signal to noise ratio (SNR), the suppression mechanism will likely eliminate some SPRs as well, resulting in decreased quantum efficiency. We examined this synapse in rabbit, where 100 rods converge onto each RBP. Suction electrode recordings showed that rabbit rod SPRs were difficult to distinguish from noise (independent SNR estimates were 2.3 and 2.8). Nonlinear transmission from rods to RBPs improved response detection (SNR = 8.7), but a large portion of the rod SPRs were discarded. For the dimmest flashes, the loss approached 90%. Despite the high rejection ratio, noise of two distinct types were apparent in the RBP traces: low amplitude rumblings and discrete events that resembled the SPR. The SPR-like event frequency suggests they result from thermal isomerizations of rhodopsin, which occured at the rate 0.033 s−1rod−1. The presence of low amplitude noise is explained by a sigmoidal input-output relationship at the rod - RBP synapse and the input of noisy rods. The rabbit rod SNR and RBP quantum efficiency are the lowest yet reported, suggesting that the quantum efficiency of the rod - RBP synapse may depend on the SNR in rods. These results point to the possibility that fewer photoisomerizations are discarded for species such as primate, which has a higher rod SNR. PMID:21047445

  13. Light Adaptation in Pecten Hyperpolarizing Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Gomez, Maria del Pilar; Nasi, Enrico

    1997-01-01

    The ability of scallop hyperpolarizing photoreceptors to respond without attenuation to repetitive flashes, together with their low light sensitivity, lack of resolvable quantum bumps and fast photoresponse kinetics, had prompted the suggestion that these cells may be constitutively in a state akin to light adaptation. We here demonstrate that their photocurrent displays all manifestations of sensory adaptation: (a) The response amplitude to a test flash is decreased in a graded way by background or conditioning lights. This attenuation of the response develops with a time constant of 200–800 ms, inversely related to background intensity. (b) Adapting stimuli shift the stimulus-response curve and reduce the size of the saturating photocurrent. (c) The fall kinetics of the photoresponse are accelerated by light adaptation, and the roll-off of the modulation transfer function is displaced to higher frequencies. This light-induced desensitization exhibits a rapid recovery, on the order of a few seconds. Based on the notion that Ca mediates light adaptation in other cells, we examined the consequences of manipulating this ion. Removal of external Ca reversibly increased the photocurrent amplitude, without affecting light sensitivity, photoresponse kinetics, or susceptibility to background adaptation; the effect, therefore, concerns ion permeation, rather than the regulation of the visual response. Intracellular dialysis with 10 mM BAPTA did not reduce the peak-to-plateau decay of the photocurrent elicited by prolonged light steps, not the background-induced compression of the response amplitude range and the acceleration of its kinetics. Conversely, high levels of buffered free [Ca]i (10 μM) only marginally shifted the sensitivity curve (Δσ = 0.3 log) and spared all manifestations of light adaptation. These results indicate that hyperpolarizing invertebrate photoreceptors adapt to light, but the underlying mechanisms must utilize pathways that are largely

  14. Cloning, sequencing, and expression of a 24-kDa Ca(2+)-binding protein activating photoreceptor guanylyl cyclase.

    PubMed

    Dizhoor, A M; Olshevskaya, E V; Henzel, W J; Wong, S C; Stults, J T; Ankoudinova, I; Hurley, J B

    1995-10-20

    Two vertebrate photoreceptor-specific membrane guanylyl cyclases, RetGC-1 and RetGC-2, are activated by a soluble 24-kDa retinal protein, p24, in a Ca(2+)-sensitive manner (Dizhoor, A.M., Lowe, D.G., Olshevskaya, E.V., Laura, R.P., and Hurley, J.B. (1994) Neuron 12, 1345-1352; Lowe, D.G., Dizhoor, A.M., Liu, K., Gu, O., Laura, R., Lu, L., and Hurley, J.B. (1995) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 92, 5535-5539). The primary structure of bovine p24 has been derived from peptide sequencing and from its cDNA. p24 is a new EF-hand-type Ca(2+)-binding protein, related but not identical to another guanylyl cyclase-activating protein, GCAP (Palczewski, K., Subbaraya, I., Gorczyca, W.A., Helekar, B.S., Ruiz, C.C., Ohguro, H. Huang, J., Zhao, X., Crabb, J.W., Johnson, R.S., Walsh, K.A., Gray-Keller, M.P., Detwiler, P.B., and Baehr, W. (1994) Neuron 13, 395-404) and other members of the recovering family of Ca(2+)-binding proteins. Antibodies against a truncated fusion protein and against a p24-specific synthetic peptide specifically recognize retinal p24 on immunoblot. Both antibodies inhibit activation of photoreceptor membrane guanylyl cyclase by purified p24. p24 is found only in retina, and it copurifies with outer segment membranes. Immunocytochemical analysis shows that it is present in rod photoreceptor cells. An immobilized antibody column was used to purify p24 from a heat-treated retinal extract. Purified p24 appears on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis as a homogeneous protein not contaminated with GCAP, and it activates photoreceptor guanylyl cyclase in vitro at submicromolar concentrations. Ca2+ inhibits this activation with an EC50 near 200 nM and a Hill coefficient of 1.7. Recombinant p24 expressed in 293 cells effectively stimulates photoreceptor guanylyl cyclase. These findings demonstrate that p24, like GCAP, imparts Ca2+ sensitivity to photoreceptor membrane guanylyl cyclase. We propose that p24 be referred to as GCAP-2 and that GCAP be referred to as

  15. Silencing of Tuberin Enhances Photoreceptor Survival and Function in a Preclinical Model of Retinitis Pigmentosa (An American Ophthalmological Society Thesis)

    PubMed Central

    Tsang, Stephen H.; Chan, Lawrence; Tsai, Yi-Ting; Wu, Wen-Hsuan; Hsu, Chun-Wei; Yang, Jin; Tosi, Joaquin; Wert, Katherine J.; Davis, Richard J.; Mahajan, Vinit B.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: To assess the functional consequences of silencing of tuberin, an inhibitor of the mTOR signaling pathway, in a preclinical model of retinitis pigmentosa (RP) in order to test the hypothesis that insufficient induction of the protein kinase B (PKB)-regulated tuberin/mTOR self-survival pathway initiates apoptosis. Methods: In an unbiased genome-scale approach, kinase peptide substrate arrays were used to analyze self-survival pathways at the onset of photoreceptor degeneration. The mutant Pde6bH620Q/Pde6bH620Q at P14 and P18 photoreceptor outer segment (OS) lysates were labeled with P-ATP and hybridized to an array of 1,164 different synthetic peptide substrates. At this stage, OS of Pde6bH620Q/Pde6bH620Q rods are morphologically normal. In vitro kinase assays and immunohistochemistry were used to validate phosphorylation. Short hairpin RNA (shRNA) gene silencing was used to validate tuberin’s role in regulating survival. Results: At the onset of degeneration, 162 peptides were differentially phosphorylated. Protein kinases A, G, C (AGC kinases), and B exhibited increased activity in both peptide array and in vitro kinase assays. Immunohistochemical data confirmed altered phosphorylation patterns for phosphoinositide-dependent kinase-1 (PDK1), ribosomal protein S6 (RPS6), and tuberin. Tuberin gene silencing rescued photoreceptors from degeneration. Conclusions: Phosphorylation of tuberin and RPS6 is due to the upregulated activity of PKB. PKB/tuberin cell growth/survival signaling is activated before the onset of degeneration. Substrates of the AGC kinases in the PKB/tuberin pathway are phosphorylated to promote cell survival. Knockdown of tuberin, the inhibitor of the mTOR pathway, increased photoreceptor survival and function in a preclinical model of RP. PMID:25646031

  16. 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.

  17. Using Zinc Finger Nuclease Technology to Generate CRX‐Reporter Human Embryonic Stem Cells as a Tool to Identify and Study the Emergence of Photoreceptors Precursors During Pluripotent Stem Cell Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Collin, Joseph; Mellough, Carla B; Dorgau, Birthe; Przyborski, Stefan; Moreno‐Gimeno, Inmaculada

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The purpose of this study was to generate human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines harboring the green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter at the endogenous loci of the Cone‐Rod Homeobox (CRX) gene, a key transcription factor in retinal development. Zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs) designed to cleave in the 3′ UTR of CRX were transfected into hESCs along with a donor construct containing homology to the target region, eGFP reporter, and a puromycin selection cassette. Following selection, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing analysis of antibiotic resistant clones indicated targeted integration of the reporter cassette at the 3′ of the CRX gene, generating a CRX‐GFP fusion. Further analysis of a clone exhibiting homozygote integration of the GFP reporter was conducted suggesting genomic stability was preserved and no other copies of the targeting cassette were inserted elsewhere within the genome. This clone was selected for differentiation towards the retinal lineage. Immunocytochemistry of sections obtained from embryoid bodies and quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR of GFP positive and negative subpopulations purified by fluorescence activated cell sorting during the differentiation indicated a significant correlation between GFP and endogenous CRX expression. Furthermore, GFP expression was found in photoreceptor precursors emerging during hESC differentiation, but not in the retinal pigmented epithelium, retinal ganglion cells, or neurons of the developing inner nuclear layer. Together our data demonstrate the successful application of ZFN technology to generate CRX‐GFP labeled hESC lines, which can be used to study and isolate photoreceptor precursors during hESC differentiation. Stem Cells 2016;34:311–321 PMID:26608863

  18. Using Zinc Finger Nuclease Technology to Generate CRX-Reporter Human Embryonic Stem Cells as a Tool to Identify and Study the Emergence of Photoreceptors Precursors During Pluripotent Stem Cell Differentiation.

    PubMed

    Collin, Joseph; Mellough, Carla B; Dorgau, Birthe; Przyborski, Stefan; Moreno-Gimeno, Inmaculada; Lako, Majlinda

    2016-02-01

    The purpose of this study was to generate human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines harboring the green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter at the endogenous loci of the Cone-Rod Homeobox (CRX) gene, a key transcription factor in retinal development. Zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs) designed to cleave in the 3' UTR of CRX were transfected into hESCs along with a donor construct containing homology to the target region, eGFP reporter, and a puromycin selection cassette. Following selection, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing analysis of antibiotic resistant clones indicated targeted integration of the reporter cassette at the 3' of the CRX gene, generating a CRX-GFP fusion. Further analysis of a clone exhibiting homozygote integration of the GFP reporter was conducted suggesting genomic stability was preserved and no other copies of the targeting cassette were inserted elsewhere within the genome. This clone was selected for differentiation towards the retinal lineage. Immunocytochemistry of sections obtained from embryoid bodies and quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR of GFP positive and negative subpopulations purified by fluorescence activated cell sorting during the differentiation indicated a significant correlation between GFP and endogenous CRX expression. Furthermore, GFP expression was found in photoreceptor precursors emerging during hESC differentiation, but not in the retinal pigmented epithelium, retinal ganglion cells, or neurons of the developing inner nuclear layer. Together our data demonstrate the successful application of ZFN technology to generate CRX-GFP labeled hESC lines, which can be used to study and isolate photoreceptor precursors during hESC differentiation.

  19. Asymmetric properties of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii cytoskeleton direct rhodopsin photoreceptor localization.

    PubMed

    Mittelmeier, Telsa M; Boyd, Joseph S; Lamb, Mary Rose; Dieckmann, Carol L

    2011-05-16

    The eyespot of the unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is a photoreceptive organelle required for phototaxis. Relative to the anterior flagella, the eyespot is asymmetrically positioned adjacent to the daughter four-membered rootlet (D4), a unique bundle of acetylated microtubules extending from the daughter basal body toward the posterior of the cell. Here, we detail the relationship between the rhodopsin eyespot photoreceptor Channelrhodopsin 1 (ChR1) and acetylated microtubules. In wild-type cells, ChR1 was observed in an equatorial patch adjacent to D4 near the end of the acetylated microtubules and along the D4 rootlet. In cells with cytoskeletal protein mutations, supernumerary ChR1 patches remained adjacent to acetylated microtubules. In mlt1 (multieyed) mutant cells, supernumerary photoreceptor patches were not restricted to the D4 rootlet, and more anterior eyespots correlated with shorter acetylated microtubule rootlets. The data suggest a model in which photoreceptor localization is dependent on microtubule-based trafficking selective for the D4 rootlet, which is perturbed in mlt1 mutant cells. PMID:21555459

  20. Functional expression of electron transport chain complexes in mouse rod outer segments.

    PubMed

    Calzia, Daniela; Garbarino, Greta; Caicci, Federico; Manni, Lucia; Candiani, Simona; Ravera, Silvia; Morelli, Alessandro; Traverso, Carlo Enrico; Panfoli, Isabella

    2014-07-01

    Rod photoreceptors efficiently carry out phototransduction cascade, an energetically costly process. Our recent data in bovine rod outer segment (OS) demonstrated that ATP for phototransduction is produced by an extramitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation, thanks to the expression of the Electron Transport Chain (ETC) complexes and of F1Fo ATP synthase in disks. Here we have focused on mouse retinas, reporting the activity of ETC complexes I, II, IV assayed directly on unfixed mouse eye sections, as well as immunogold TEM analysis of fixed mouse eye sections to verify the presence of ND4L subunit of ETC complex I and subunit IV of ETC complex IV in rod OS. Data suggest the presence of functional ETC in mouse rod OS, like their bovine counterpart. The protocol here developed for in situ assay of the ETC complexes activity represents a reliable method for the detection of ETC dysfunction in mice models of retinal pathologies. In fact, the ETC is a major source of reactive oxygen intermediates, and oxidative stress, especially when ectopically expressed in the OS. In turn, oxidative stress contributes to many retinal pathologies, such as diabetic retinopathy, age related macular degeneration, photoreceptor death after retinal detachment and some forms of retinitis pigmentosa.

  1. Rod electrical coupling is controlled by a circadian clock and dopamine in mouse retina.

    PubMed

    Jin, Nan Ge; Chuang, Alice Z; Masson, Philippe J; Ribelayga, Christophe P

    2015-04-01

    Rod single-photon responses are critical for vision in dim light. Electrical coupling via gap junction channels shapes the light response properties of vertebrate photoreceptors, but the regulation of rod coupling and its impact on the single-photon response have remained unclear. To directly address these questions, we developed a perforated patch-clamp recording technique and recorded from single rod inner segments in isolated intact neural mouse retinae, maintained by superfusion. Experiments were conducted at different times of the day or under constant environmental conditions, at different times across the circadian cycle. We show that rod electrical coupling is regulated by a circadian clock and dopamine, so that coupling is weak during the day and strong at night. Altogether, patch-clamp recordings of single-photon responses in mouse rods, tracer coupling, receptive field measurements and pharmacological manipulations of gap junction and dopamine receptor activity provide compelling evidence that rod coupling is modulated in a circadian manner. These data are consistent with computer modelling. At night, single-photon responses are smaller due to coupling, but the signal-to-noise ratio for a dim (multiphoton) light response is increased at night because of signal averaging between coupled rods. PMID:25616058

  2. 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.

  3. Phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate is light-regulated and essential for survival in retinal rods

    PubMed Central

    He, Feng; Agosto, Melina A.; Anastassov, Ivan A.; Tse, Dennis Y.; Wu, Samuel M.; Wensel, Theodore G.

    2016-01-01

    Phosphoinositides play important roles in numerous intracellular membrane pathways. Little is known about the regulation or function of these lipids in rod photoreceptor cells, which have highly active membrane dynamics. Using new assays with femtomole sensitivity, we determined that whereas levels of phosphatidylinositol-3,4-bisphosphate and phosphatidylinositol-3,4,5-trisphosphate were below detection limits, phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate (PI(3)P) levels in rod inner/outer segments increased more than 30-fold after light exposure. This increase was blocked in a rod-specific knockout of the PI-3 kinase Vps34, resulting in failure of endosomal and autophagy-related membranes to fuse with lysosomes, and accumulation of abnormal membrane structures. At early ages, rods displayed normal morphology, rhodopsin trafficking, and light responses, but underwent progressive neurodegeneration with eventual loss of both rods and cones by twelve weeks. The degeneration is considerably faster than in rod knockouts of autophagy genes, indicating defects in endosome recycling or other PI(3)P-dependent membrane trafficking pathways are also essential for rod survival. PMID:27245220

  4. Proton release from Stentor photoreceptors in the excited states.

    PubMed Central

    Song, P S; Walker, E B; Auerbach, R A; Robinson, G W

    1981-01-01

    Steady-state and picosecond pulse excitations of the photophobic-phototactic receptors isolated from Stentor coeruleus produced anionic species predominantly in the excited singlet state, although neutral photoreceptors in the ground state were exclusively excited. The same photoreceptor in vivo also emits fluorescence from the excited state of its anionic species, with an excitation spectrum identical to the absorption spectrum of the neutral species in the ground state. The excited state dissociation of protons from the photoreceptor chromophore (stentorin; hypericin covalently linked to protein) efficiently occurs in less than 10 ps. A possible role of the transient-proton release from the photoreceptor, in the signal transduction photoresponse of Stentor, is briefly discussed. PMID:6791722

  5. 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)

  6. The ultrastructure of monkey foveal photoreceptors, with special reference to the structure, shape, size, and spacing of the foveal cones.

    PubMed

    Borwein, B; Borwein, D; Medeiros, J; McGowan, J W

    1980-10-01

    A systematic electron microscopic study was made of the structure of foveal cones of Macaca spp. Transverse sections of inner (IS) and outer segments (OS) were made in sequence, from the pigment epithelial zone (PEZ) to the outer limiting membrane (OLM). The smallest diameters of hundreds of cone sections were measured from electron micrographs with a Zeiss particle-size analyzer, and analyzed statistically. Some details are also included about Cebus photoreceptors. It is claimed in the literature that foveal cones are rod-like (cylindrical) and untapered. Our study shows the foveolar cone to be a tapered structure. There has been some confusion between the foveola, which is rod-free, and the fovea, which has a high concentration of cones, but is not rod-free. Within the fovea, as the ratio of cones to rods falls from infinity to 1, with distance from the central bouquet of cones, the cone center-to-center distances increase, the inner segment diameters increase, and the number of cones/sq mm decreases. The tapered calycal processes are more massive in M. irus than M. mulatta, and the lateral fins are better developed. Lateral fins are not present in the foveola. The cones are arranged in straight lines. PMID:7446444

  7. Morphological and physiological characteristics of dermal photoreceptors in Lymnaea stagnalis

    PubMed Central

    Takigami, Satoshi; Sunada, Hiroshi; Horikoshi, Tetsuro; Sakakibara, Manabu

    2014-01-01

    Dermal photoreceptors located in the mantle of Lymnaea stagnalis were histologically and physiologically characterized. Our previous study demonstrated that the shadow response from dermal photoreceptors induces the whole-body withdrawal response. Through the interneuron, RPeD11, we detected that the light-off response indirectly originated from a dermal photoreceptor. Previous observations, based on behavioral pharmacology, revealed that cyclic guanosine monophosphate acts as a second messenger in the dermal photoreceptor. Furthermore, gastropods possess dermal photoreceptors containing rhodopsin, as a photopigment, and another photo-sensitive protein, arrestin, responsible for terminating the light response. Thus, we chose three antibodies, anti-cGMP, anti-rhodopsin, and anti-β-arrestin, to identify the dermal photoreceptor molecules in Lymnaea mantle. Extracellular recording, using a suction electrode on the mantle, revealed a light off-response from the right parietal nerve. Overlapping structures, positive against each of the antibodies, were also observed. Numerous round, granular particles of 3–47 μm in diameter with one nucleus were distributed around pneumostome and/or inside the mantle. The cells surrounding the pneumostome area, located 10 μm beneath the surface, tended to have smaller cell soma ranging from 3 to 25 μm in diameter, while cells located in other areas were distributed uniformly inside the mantle, with a larger diameter ranging from 12 to 47 μm. The histological examination using back-filing Lucifer Yellow staining of the right parietal nerve with the three dermal photoreceptor antibodies confirmed that these overlapping-stained structures were dermal photoreceptors in Lymnaea. PMID:27493502

  8. Photoreceptor avascular privilege is shielded by soluble VEGF receptor-1

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Ling; Uehara, Hironori; Zhang, Xiaohui; Das, Subrata K; Olsen, Thomas; Holt, Derick; Simonis, Jacquelyn M; Jackman, Kyle; Singh, Nirbhai; Miya, Tadashi R; Huang, Wei; Ahmed, Faisal; Bastos-Carvalho, Ana; Le, Yun Zheng; Mamalis, Christina; Chiodo, Vince A; Hauswirth, William W; Baffi, Judit; Lacal, Pedro M; Orecchia, Angela; Ferrara, Napoleone; Gao, Guangping; Young-hee, Kim; Fu, Yingbin; Owen, Leah; Albuquerque, Romulo; Baehr, Wolfgang; Thomas, Kirk; Li, Dean Y; Chalam, Kakarla V; Shibuya, Masabumi; Grisanti, Salvatore; Wilson, David J; Ambati, Jayakrishna; Ambati, Balamurali K

    2013-01-01

    Optimal phototransduction requires separation of the avascular photoreceptor layer from the adjacent vascularized inner retina and choroid. Breakdown of peri-photoreceptor vascular demarcation leads to retinal angiomatous proliferation or choroidal neovascularization, two variants of vascular invasion of the photoreceptor layer in age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of irreversible blindness in industrialized nations. Here we show that sFLT-1, an endogenous inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A), is synthesized by photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), and is decreased in human AMD. Suppression of sFLT-1 by antibodies, adeno-associated virus-mediated RNA interference, or Cre/lox-mediated gene ablation either in the photoreceptor layer or RPE frees VEGF-A and abolishes photoreceptor avascularity. These findings help explain the vascular zoning of the retina, which is critical for vision, and advance two transgenic murine models of AMD with spontaneous vascular invasion early in life. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00324.001 PMID:23795287

  9. Welded oil well pump rod

    SciTech Connect

    Hughes, R.F.

    1986-06-10

    A friction welded multiple component oil well sucker rod is described which consists of an elongated cylindrical rod section and apposed coupling end portions welded to opposite ends of the rod section, the coupling end portions being of a nominal maximum diameter at least 1.5 times greater than the rod section and including means for connecting the sucker rod to an adjacent rod in end to end relationship. The couplings end portions each include an axial tapered portion between the connecting means and an end face adapted to be butted to the rod section, the coupling end portions being butted against the opposed end portions of the rod section during a friction welding operation to form a radially outward projecting bulge of displaced material on the rod section and the coupling end portions, respectively. A greater cross-sectional area is formed at the transition of the rod section to the coupling end portion to reduce the unit tensile stress on the sucker rod in the vicinity of the weld, wherein the displaced material is machined to form a tapered surface between the rod section and the axial tapered portion of the coupling end portion, the tapered surface having an angle of taper with respect to the longitudinal axis of the sucker rod less than the angle of taper of the coupling end portion.

  10. Class D sucker rods

    SciTech Connect

    Woodings, R. T.

    1984-10-23

    It has been found that API Class D sucker rods can be made inexpensively from low-alloy, low-cost steel by following a suitable induction-normalizing process and using a suitable steel to which there has been added 0.07 to 0.15 percent of vanadium.

  11. Effects of Ar-40 and Fe-56 ions on retinal photoreceptor cells of the rabbit: Implications for manned missions to Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, G. R.; Lett, J. T.

    1994-01-01

    Losses of photoreceptor cells (rods) from the retinas of New Zealand white (NZW) rabbits were detectable within 2 years after localized acute irradiation of optic and proximal tissues with greater than or equal to 7 Gy of 530 MeV u(exp -1) Ar-40 ions or greater than or equal to 2 Gy of 465 MeV u(exp -1) Fe-56 ions in the Bragg plateau region of energy deposition. Those limits were determined only from an analysis of variance of dose groups because the shapes of the dose response curves at early post-irradiation times are not known, a concern being addressed by experiments in progress. Losses of photoreceptor cells for the period 0.5-2.5 years post-irradiation, determined by provisional linear regression analysis, were approxiamtely 1.7% Gy(exp -1) and 2.5% Gy(exp.-1) for Ar-40 and Fe-56 ions, respectively.

  12. Effects of 40Ar and 56Fe ions on retinal photoreceptor cells of the rabbit: implications for manned missions to Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, G. R.; Lett, J. T.

    1994-01-01

    Losses of photoreceptor cells (rods) from the retinas of New Zealand white (NZW) rabbits were detectable within 2 years after localized acute irradiation of optic and proximal tissues with > or = 7 Gy of 530 MeV u-1 40Ar ions or > or = 2 Gy of 465 MeV u-1 56Fe ions in the Bragg plateau region of energy deposition. Those limits were determined only from an analysis of variance of dose groups because the shapes of the dose response curves at early post-irradiation times are not known, a concern being addressed by experiments in progress. Losses of photoreceptor cells for the period 0.5-2.5 years post-irradiation, determined by provisional linear regression analysis, were approximately 1.7% Gy-1 and 2.5% Gy-1 for 40Ar and 56Fe ions, respectively.

  13. In the Limelight: Photoreceptors in Cyanobacteria

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Certain cyanobacteria look green if grown in red light and vice versa. This dramatic color change, called complementary chromatic adaptation (CCA), is caused by alterations of the major colored light-harvesting proteins. A major controller of CCA is the cyanobacteriochrome (CBCR) RcaE, a red-green reversible photoreceptor that triggers a complex signal transduction pathway. Now, a new study demonstrates that CCA is also modulated by DpxA, a CBCR that senses yellow and teal (greenish blue) light. DpxA acts to expand the range of wavelengths that can impact CCA, by fine-tuning the process. This dual control of CCA might positively impact the fitness of cells growing in the shade of competing algae or in a water column where light levels and spectral quality change gradually with depth. This discovery adds to the growing number of light-responsive phenomena controlled by multiple CBCRs. Furthermore, the diverse CBCRs which are exclusively found in cyanobacteria have significant biotechnological potential. PMID:27353763

  14. In the Limelight: Photoreceptors in Cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Bhaya, Devaki

    2016-01-01

    Certain cyanobacteria look green if grown in red light and vice versa. This dramatic color change, called complementary chromatic adaptation (CCA), is caused by alterations of the major colored light-harvesting proteins. A major controller of CCA is the cyanobacteriochrome (CBCR) RcaE, a red-green reversible photoreceptor that triggers a complex signal transduction pathway. Now, a new study demonstrates that CCA is also modulated by DpxA, a CBCR that senses yellow and teal (greenish blue) light. DpxA acts to expand the range of wavelengths that can impact CCA, by fine-tuning the process. This dual control of CCA might positively impact the fitness of cells growing in the shade of competing algae or in a water column where light levels and spectral quality change gradually with depth. This discovery adds to the growing number of light-responsive phenomena controlled by multiple CBCRs. Furthermore, the diverse CBCRs which are exclusively found in cyanobacteria have significant biotechnological potential. PMID:27353763

  15. Retinal dysfunction, photoreceptor protein dysregulation and neuronal remodelling in the R6/1 mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    PubMed

    Batcha, Abrez Hussain; Greferath, Una; Jobling, Andrew I; Vessey, Kirstan A; Ward, Michelle M; Nithianantharajah, Jess; Hannan, Anthony J; Kalloniatis, Michael; Fletcher, Erica L

    2012-03-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive neurological disease characterised by motor dysfunction, cognitive impairment and personality changes. Previous work in HD patients and animal models of the disease has also highlighted retinal involvement. This study characterised the changes in retinal structure and function early within the progression of disease using the R6/1 mouse model of HD. The retinal phenotype was observed to occur at the same time in the disease process as other neurological deficits such as motor dysfunction (by 13 weeks of age). There was a specific functional deficit in cone response to the electroretinogram and using immunocytochemical techniques, this dysfunction was found to be likely due to a progressive and complete loss of cone opsin and transducin protein expression by 20 weeks of age. In addition, there was an increase in Müller cell gliosis and the presence of ectopic rod photoreceptor terminals. This retinal remodelling is also observed in downstream neurons, namely the rod and cone bipolar cells. While R6/1 mice exhibit significant retinal pathology simultaneously with other more classical HD alterations, this doesn't lead to extensive cell loss. These findings suggest that in HD, cone photoreceptors are initially targeted, possibly via dysregulation of protein expression or trafficking and that this process is subsequently accompanied by increased retinal stress and neuronal remodelling also involving the rod pathway. As retinal structure and connectivity are well characterised, the retina may provide a useful model tissue in which to characterise the mechanisms important in the development of neuronal pathology in HD.

  16. 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)

  17. Therapeutic strategy for handling inherited retinal degenerations in a gene-independent manner using rod-derived cone viability factors.

    PubMed

    Léveillard, Thierry; Fridlich, Ram; Clérin, Emmanuelle; Aït-Ali, Najate; Millet-Puel, Géraldine; Jaillard, Céline; Yang, Ying; Zack, Donald; van-Dorsselaer, Alain; Sahel, José-Alain

    2014-03-01

    The most common hereditary retinal degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa (RP), leads to blindness by degeneration of cone photoreceptors. Meanwhile, genetic studies have shown that a significant proportion of RP genes is expressed only by rods, which raises the question of the mechanism leading to the degeneration of cones. Following the concept of sustainability factor cones, rods secrete survival factors that are necessary to maintain the cones, named Rod-derived Cone Viability Factors (RdCVFs). In patients suffering from RP, loss of rods results in the loss of RdCVFs expression and followed by cone degeneration. We have identified the bifunctional genes nucleoredoxin-like 1 and 2 that encode for, by differential splicing, a thioredoxin enzyme and a cone survival factor, respectively RdCVF and RdCVF2. The administration of these survival factors would maintain cones and central vision in most patients suffering from RP.

  18. Successful Gene Therapy in the RPGRIP1-deficient Dog: a Large Model of Cone–Rod Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Lhériteau, Elsa; Petit, Lolita; Weber, Michel; Le Meur, Guylène; Deschamps, Jack-Yves; Libeau, Lyse; Mendes-Madeira, Alexandra; Guihal, Caroline; François, Achille; Guyon, Richard; Provost, Nathalie; Lemoine, Françoise; Papal, Samantha; El-Amraoui, Aziz; Colle, Marie-Anne; Moullier, Philippe; Rolling, Fabienne

    2014-01-01

    For the development of new therapies, proof-of-concept studies in large animal models that share clinical features with their human counterparts represent a pivotal step. For inherited retinal dystrophies primarily involving photoreceptor cells, the efficacy of gene therapy has been demonstrated in canine models of stationary cone dystrophies and progressive rod–cone dystrophies but not in large models of progressive cone–rod dystrophies, another important cause of blindness. To address the last issue, we evaluated gene therapy in the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator interacting protein 1 (RPGRIP1)-deficient dog, a model exhibiting a severe cone–rod dystrophy similar to that seen in humans. Subretinal injection of AAV5 (n = 5) or AAV8 (n = 2) encoding the canine Rpgrip1 improved photoreceptor survival in transduced areas of treated retinas. Cone function was significantly and stably rescued in all treated eyes (18–72% of those recorded in normal eyes) up to 24 months postinjection. Rod function was also preserved (22–29% of baseline function) in four of the five treated dogs up to 24 months postinjection. No detectable rod function remained in untreated contralateral eyes. More importantly, treatment preserved bright- and dim-light vision. Efficacy of gene therapy in this large animal model of cone–rod dystrophy provides great promise for human treatment. PMID:24091916

  19. Ontogenetic changes in photoreceptor opsin gene expression in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch, Walbaum).

    PubMed

    Temple, S E; Veldhoen, K M; Phelan, J T; Veldhoen, N J; Hawryshyn, C W

    2008-12-01

    Pacific salmonids start life in fresh water then migrate to the sea, after a metamorphic event called smoltification, later returning to their natal freshwater streams to spawn and die. To accommodate changes in visual environments throughout life history, salmon may adjust their spectral sensitivity. We investigated this possibility by examining ontogenetic and thyroid hormone (TH)-induced changes in visual pigments in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch, Walbaum). Using microspectrophotometry, we measured the spectral absorbance (quantified by lambda(max)) of rods, and middle and long wavelength-sensitive (MWS and LWS) cones in three age classes of coho, representing both freshwater and marine phases. The lambda(max) of MWS and LWS cones differed among freshwater (alevin and parr) and ocean (smolt) phases. The lambda(max) of rods, on the other hand, did not vary, which is evidence that vitamin A(1)/A(2) visual pigment chromophore ratios were similar among freshwater and ocean phases when sampled at the same time of year. Exogenous TH treatment long wavelength shifted the lambda(max) of rods, consistent with an increase in A(2). However, shifts in cones were greater than predicted for a change in chromophore ratio. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR demonstrated that at least two RH2 opsin subtypes were expressed in MWS cones, and these were differentially expressed among alevin, parr and TH-treated alevin groups. Combined with changes in A(1)/A(2) ratio, differential expression of opsin subtypes allows coho to alter the spectral absorbance of their MWS and LWS cones by as much as 60 and 90 nm, respectively. To our knowledge, this is the largest spectral shift reported in a vertebrate photoreceptor.

  20. Calcium content and calcium exchange in dark-adapted toad rods.

    PubMed Central

    Fain, G L; Schröder, W H

    1985-01-01

    We have used laser-activated micro mass analysis (l.a.m.m.a.) and energy-dispersive X-ray analysis (e.d.x.) to measure Ca content and Ca movements in 'red' rod photoreceptors in the dark-adapted retina of the toad, Bufo marinus. Measurements with both l.a.m.m.a. and e.d.x. show that intact rod outer segments contain 4-5 mmol total Ca/l wet tissue volume, or 1-2 Ca per rhodopsin. We could detect no significant variation in the total Ca as a function of distance across or up and down the outer segment. In the inner segment, Ca could be detected only within the mitochondria-rich ellipsoid body, where the total Ca concentration was of the order of 100-400 mumol/l wet tissue volume. To measure the exchange of Ca in outer segments from intact photoreceptors, we exposed the dark-adapted retina to Ringer containing the stable isotope 44Ca. Since l.a.m.m.a. can measure separately the concentrations of each of the isotopes of the elements, and since native rods contain almost exclusively 40Ca, the increase in 44Ca and decrease in 40Ca could be used as a measure of Ca influx and efflux. Ca exchange in intact rod outer segments in darkness is very slow. The rate of accumulation of 44Ca was only 10(5) Ca/rod.s, or about 10% of the total outer segment Ca/h. This slow rate of exchange is apparently not the result of restricted movement of Ca across the plasma membrane. Ca exchange was also measured in outer segments which were either partially or entirely detached from the rest of the photoreceptor. In broken-off outer segments, Ca exchange is faster than in the intact organelles, and in 1 h, half of the 44Ca exchanges for 40Ca. When the retina was incubated in Ringer for which all of the Na was substituted with Li or choline, there was an increase in the rate of 44Ca accumulation in intact outer segments, probably due to an inhibition of Na-Ca counter transport across the plasma membrane. Our measurements indicate that the great majority of the Ca in the rod appears to be

  1. 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)

  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. Not just signal shutoff: the protective role of arrestin-1 in rod cells.

    PubMed

    Sommer, Martha E; Hofmann, Klaus Peter; Heck, Martin

    2014-01-01

    The retinal rod cell is an exquisitely sensitive single-photon detector that primarily functions in dim light (e.g., moonlight). However, rod cells must routinely survive light intensities more than a billion times greater (e.g., bright daylight). One serious challenge to rod cell survival in daylight is the massive amount of all-trans-retinal that is released by Meta II, the light-activated form of the photoreceptor rhodopsin. All-trans-retinal is toxic, and its condensation products have been implicated in disease. Our recent work has developed the concept that rod arrestin (arrestin-1), which terminates Meta II signaling, has an additional role in protecting rod cells from the consequences of bright light by limiting free all-trans-retinal. In this chapter we will elaborate upon the molecular mechanisms by which arrestin-1 serves as both a single-photon response quencher as well as an instrument of rod cell survival in bright light. This discussion will take place within the framework of three distinct functional modules of vision: signal transduction, the retinoid cycle, and protein translocation.

  4. Protein Kinase C Activity and Light Sensitivity of Single Amphibian Rods

    PubMed Central

    Xiong, W.-H.; Nakatani, K.; Ye, B.; Yau, K.-W.

    1997-01-01

    Biochemical experiments by others have indicated that protein kinase C activity is present in the rod outer segment, with potential or demonstrated targets including rhodopsin, transducin, cGMP-phosphodiesterase (PDE), guanylate cyclase, and arrestin, all of which are components of the phototransduction cascade. In particular, PKC phosphorylations of rhodopsin and the inhibitory subunit of PDE (PDE γ) have been studied in some detail, and suggested to have roles in downregulating the sensitivity of rod photoreceptors to light during illumination. We have examined this question under physiological conditions by recording from a single, dissociated salamander rod with a suction pipette while exposing its outer segment to the PKC activators phorbol-12-myristate,13-acetate (PMA) or phorbol-12,13-dibutyrate (PDBu), or to the PKC-inhibitor GF109203X. No significant effect of any of these agents on rod sensitivity was detected, whether in the absence or presence of a background light, or after a low bleach. These results suggest that PKC probably does not produce any acute downregulation of rod sensitivity as a mechanism of light adaptation, at least for isolated amphibian rods. PMID:9379174

  5. Switch in rod opsin gene expression in the European eel, Anguilla anguilla (L.).

    PubMed Central

    Hope, A J; Partridge, J C; Hayes, P K

    1998-01-01

    The rod photoreceptors of the European eel, Anguilla anguilla (L.), alter their wavelength of maximum sensitivity (lambda max) from c.a. 523 nm to c.a. 482 nm at maturation, a switch involving the synthesis of a new visual pigment protein (opsin) that is inserted into the outer segments of existing rods. We artificially induced the switch in rod opsin production by the administration of hormones, and monitored the switch at the level of mRNA accumulation using radiolabelled oligonuleotides that hybridized differently to the two forms of eel rod opsin. The production of the deep-sea form of rod opsin was detected 6 h after the first hormone injection, and the switch in rod opsin expression was complete within four weeks, at which time only the mRNA for the deep-sea opsin was detectable in the retinal cells. It is suggested that this system could be used as a tractable model for studying the regulatory control of opsin gene expression. PMID:9633112

  6. Adaptation to background light enables contrast coding at rod bipolar cell synapses

    PubMed Central

    Ke, Jiang-Bin; Wang, Yanbin V.; Borghuis, Bart G.; Cembrowski, Mark S.; Riecke, Hermann; Kath, William L.; Demb, Jonathan B.; Singer, Joshua H.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Rod photoreceptors contribute to vision over a ~6 log-unit range of light intensities. The wide dynamic range of rod vision is thought to depend upon light intensity-dependent switching between two parallel pathways linking rods to ganglion cells: a rod→rod bipolar (RB) cell pathway that operates at dim backgrounds and a rod→cone→cone bipolar cell pathway that operates at brighter backgrounds. We evaluated this conventional model of rod vision by recording rod-mediated light responses from ganglion and AII amacrine cells and by recording RB-mediated synaptic currents from AII amacrine cells in mouse retina. Contrary to the conventional model, we found that the RB pathway functioned at backgrounds sufficient to activate the rod→cone pathway. As background light intensity increased, the RB’s role changed from encoding the absorption of single photons to encoding contrast modulations around mean luminance. This transition is explained by the intrinsic dynamics of transmission from RB synapses. PMID:24373883

  7. Sucker rod centralizer

    SciTech Connect

    Rivas, O.; Newski, A.

    1989-10-03

    This patent describes a device for centralizing at least one sucker rod within a production pipe downhole in a well and for reducing frictional forces between the pipe and at least one sucker rod. It comprises an elongate, substantially cylindrical body member having a longitudinal axis, a plurality of slots within the member and a rotatable member mounted within each slot, each of the plurality of slots has its major dimension along a first axis parallel to the longitudinal axis of the body member and is oriented with respect to the other seats so as to form a helicoidal array for maximizing the total surface contact area between the rotatable members and the pipe and for decreasing the forces acting on each rotatable member.

  8. Sucker rod guide

    SciTech Connect

    White, R.C.

    1988-10-25

    This patent describes an improved guide for use in a string of sucker rods for reciprocation in a tubing string in a borehole, the sucker rods having threaded male ends, the guide comprising: an elongated upright cylindrical member of external diameter less than the internal diameter of tubing in which it is to be used, the member having sucker rod receiving female threaded openings at the upper and lower ends, the threaded openings being coaxial of the member cylindrical axis whereby the member may be positioned in a string of sucker rods, and including a plurality of spaced-apart parallel sided slots within the member, each slot being of semi-circular configuration and of depth greater than the radius and less than the diameter of the cylindrical member, the sidewalls of each slot being parallel to and equally spaced from a plane of the member cylindrical axis; the member having an axle bore therein for each of the slots, the axle bores being parallel and spaced apart from each other, a plane of the axis of each bore being perpendicular the member cylindrical axis and the axis of each bore being displaced away from the member cylindrical axis; an axle received in each axle bore; and a wheel received on each axle the diameter of each wheel being approximately the diameter of the cylindrical member, the periphery of each wheel extending beyond the member cylindrical wall whereby the wheels are positioned to engage and roll on the internal cylindrical surface of tubing, the planes of adjacent slots in the member being rotationally displaced from each other, a portion of each wheel extending beyond the cylindrical surface of the member, the opposed portion of each wheel being within the confines of the member cylindrical surface whereby each wheel can contact a tubing wall at only one point on its cylindrical surface.

  9. 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)

  10. Sucker rod coupling

    SciTech Connect

    Klyne, A.A.

    1986-11-11

    An anti-friction sucker rod coupling is described for connecting a pair of sucker rods and centralizing them in a tubing string, comprising: an elongate, rigid, substantially cylindrical body member, each end of the body member forming means for threadably connecting the body member with a sucker rod. The body member further forms a transversely extending, substantially diametric, generally vertical slot extending therethrough. The body member further forms a pin bore, such pin bore extending transversely through the body member so as to intersect the slot substantially perpendicularly; a wheel member positioned within the slot to rotate in a generally vertical plane. The wheel member has a portion thereof extending beyond the periphery of the body member to engage the inner surface of the tubing string and centralize the coupling; and a pin mounted in the pin bore and supporting member thereon, whereby the wheel member is rotatable within the slot; the wheel member having sufficient clearance between its side surfaces and the wall surfaces of the slot, when the wheel member is centered in the slot on the pin, whereby the wheel member may shift along the pin to assist in ejecting sand and oil from the slot.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Rod locking device

    SciTech Connect

    Troxell, J.N. Jr.

    1986-07-22

    A ram locking apparatus used on a blowout preventer is described having a housing, a ram, ram actuating means having a closing side and a retracted side and a tail rod having its inner end connected to the ram actuating means and its outer end engaged by the apparatus to lock the ram. The apparatus consists of: a lock housing having a closed end and a hollow interior connected to the exterior of the preventer housing in which the tail rod is positioned, a body positioned within the lock housing, a primary piston, a lost motion connection between the primary piston and the body, a lock piston associated with the primary piston and movable axially with respect to the primary piston, a tapered split locking ring interconnected to the lock piston, wedging means with the split locking ring, and means for supplying fluid under pressure into the lock housing for movement of the pistons, the initial pressure on the primary pistons causing movement of the body to engage the ram tail rod and subsequently moving the lock piston relative to the wedging means and to thereby wedge the split locking ring against the interior of the lock housing to lock the body therein against movement in the lock housing.

  14. Biological photoreceptors of light-dependent regulatory processes.

    PubMed

    Fraikin, G Ya; Strakhovskaya, M G; Rubin, A B

    2013-11-01

    Progress in understanding primary mechanisms of light reception in photoregulatory processes is achieved through discovering new biological photoreceptors, chiefly the regulatory sensors of blue/UV-A light. Among them are LOV domain-containing proteins and DNA photolyase-like cryptochromes, which constitute two widespread groups of photoreceptors that use flavin cofactors (FMN or FAD) as the photoactive chromophores. Bacterial LOV domain modules are connected in photoreceptor proteins with regulatory domains such as diguanylate cyclases/phosphodiesterases, histidine kinases, and DNA-binding domains that are activated by photoconversions of flavin. Identification of red/far-red light sensors in chemotrophic bacteria (bacteriophytochromes) and crystal structures of their photosensor module with bilin chromophore are significant for decoding the mechanisms of phytochrome receptor photoconversion and early step mechanisms of phytochrome-mediated signaling. The only UV-B regulatory photon sensor, UVR8, recently identified in plants, unlike other photoreceptors functions without a prosthetic chromophore: tryptophans of the unique UVR8 protein structure provide a "UV-B antenna". Our analysis of new data on photosensory properties of the identified photoreceptors in conjunction with their structure opens insight on the influence of the molecular microenvironment on light-induced chromophore reactions, the mechanisms by which the photoactivated chromophores trigger conformational changes in the surrounding protein structure, and structural bases of propagation of these changes to the interacting effector domains/proteins.

  15. Ih channels control feedback regulation from amacrine cells to photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Hu, Wen; Wang, Tingting; Wang, Xiao; Han, Junhai

    2015-04-01

    In both vertebrates and invertebrates, photoreceptors' output is regulated by feedback signals from interneurons that contribute to several important visual functions. Although synaptic feedback regulation of photoreceptors is known to occur in Drosophila, many questions about the underlying molecular mechanisms and physiological implementation remain unclear. Here, we systematically investigated these questions using a broad range of experimental methods. We isolated two Ih mutant fly lines that exhibit rhythmic photoreceptor depolarization without light stimulation. We discovered that Ih channels regulate glutamate release from amacrine cells by modulating calcium channel activity. Moreover, we showed that the eye-enriched kainate receptor (EKAR) is expressed in photoreceptors and receives the glutamate signal released from amacrine cells. Finally, we presented evidence that amacrine cell feedback regulation helps maintain light sensitivity in ambient light. Our findings suggest plausible molecular underpinnings and physiological effects of feedback regulation from amacrine cells to photoreceptors. These results provide new mechanistic insight into how synaptic feedback regulation can participate in network processing by modulating neural information transfer and circuit excitability.

  16. Apoptotic photoreceptor cell death in mouse models of retinitis pigmentosa.

    PubMed Central

    Portera-Cailliau, C; Sung, C H; Nathans, J; Adler, R

    1994-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a group of inherited human diseases in which photoreceptor degeneration leads to visual loss and eventually to blindness. Although mutations in the rhodopsin, peripherin, and cGMP phosphodiesterase genes have been identified in some forms of RP, it remains to be determined whether these mutations lead to photoreceptor cell death through necrotic or apoptotic mechanisms. In this paper, we report a test of the hypothesis that photoreceptor cell death occurs by an apoptotic mechanism in three mouse models of RP: retinal degeneration slow (rds) caused by a peripherin mutation, retinal degeneration (rd) caused by a defect in cGMP phosphodiesterase, and transgenic mice carrying a rhodopsin Q344ter mutation responsible for autosomal dominant RP. Two complementary techniques were used to detect apoptosis-specific internucleosomal DNA fragmentation: agarose gel electrophoresis and in situ labeling of apoptotic cells by terminal dUTP nick end labeling. Both methods showed extensive apoptosis of photoreceptors in all three mouse models of retinal degeneration. We also show that apoptotic death occurs in the retina during normal development, suggesting that different mechanisms can cause photoreceptor death by activating an intrinsic death program in these cells. These findings raise the possibility that retinal degenerations may be slowed by interfering with the apoptotic mechanism itself. Images PMID:8302876

  17. Distinct lobes of Limulus ventral photoreceptors. II. Structure and ultrastructure

    PubMed Central

    1982-01-01

    The structure of Limulus ventral photoreceptors fixed in situ has been investigated using light and electron microscopy and computer-assisted reconstruction and planimetry. Photoreceptors occur singly and in clusters. All photoreceptors have two types of lobes. The rhabdomeral lobe (R lobe) appears to be specialized for light sensitivity, containing the rhabdomere, which completely covers its external surface and forms infoldings into the lobe. The structure of the external rhabdom differs from that within infoldings. The other main structures of the R lobe are the palisades along the rhabdom, multivesicular bodies, lamellar bodies, and mitochondria. The arhabdomeral lobe (A lobe) bears the axon and contains the nucleus, clusters of residual bodies, lamellar arrays of endoplasmic reticulum, masses of glycogen, lipid droplets, and Golgi complexes. The R lobe and A lobe are analogous to the outer and inner segments of vertebrae photoreceptors. In single photoreceptors A and R lobes are separated by an indentation filled with glial processes. Computer reconstructions of cell clusters reveal that each cell has both types of lobes and an axon. Most of the rhabdom is formed from abutting arrays of external rhabdom from the R lobes of different members of the cluster. Efferent fibers containing characteristic angular granules penetrate single cells and clusters in glial invaginations. The main, if not exclusive, target of the efferent fibers is the internal rhabdom. PMID:7175491

  18. The ventral photoreceptor cells of Limulus. I. The microanatomy.

    PubMed

    Clark, A W; Millecchia, R; Mauro, A

    1969-09-01

    The ventral photoreceptor cells of Limulus polyphemus resemble the retinular cells of the lateral eyes both in electrical behavior and in morphology. Because of the great size of the ventral photoreceptor cells they are easy to impale with glass capillary micropipettes. Their location along the length of the ventral eye nerve makes them easy to dissect out and fix for electron microscopy. Each cell has a large, ellipsoidal soma that tapers into an axon whose length depends upon the distance of the cell from the brain. The cell body contains a rich variety of cytoplasmic organelles with an especially abundant endoplasmic reticulum. The most prominent structural feature is the microvillous rhabdomere, a highly modified infolding of the plasmalemma. The microvilli are tightly packed together within the rhabdomere, and quintuple-layered junctions are encountered wherever microvillar membranes touch each other. Glial cells cover the surface of the photoreceptor cell and send long, sheet-like projections of their cytoplasm into the cell body of the photoreceptor cell. Some of these projections penetrate the rhabdomere deep within the cell and form quintuple-layered junctions with the microvilli. Junctions between glial cells and the photoreceptor cell and between adjacent glial cells are rarely encountered elsewhere, indicating that there is an open pathway between the intermicrovillous space and the extracellular medium. The axon has a normal morphology but it is electrically inexcitable. PMID:5806591

  19. A quantitative account of the activation steps involved in phototransduction in amphibian photoreceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, T D; Pugh, E N

    1992-01-01

    1. We have undertaken a theoretical analysis of the steps contributing to the phototransduction cascade in vertebrate photoreceptors. We have explicitly considered only the activation steps, i.e. we have not dealt with the inactivation reactions. 2. From the theoretical analysis we conclude that a single photoisomerization leads to activation of the phosphodiesterase (PDE) with a time course which approximates a delayed ramp; the delay is contributed by several short first-order delay stages. 3. We derive a method for extracting the time course of PDE activation from the measured electrical response, and we apply this method to recordings of the photoresponse from salamander rods. The results confirm the prediction that the time course of PDE activation is a delayed ramp, with slope proportional to light intensity; the initial delay is about 10-20 ms. 4. We derive approximate analytical solutions for the electrical response of the photoreceptor to light, both for bright flashes (isotropic conditions) and for single photons (involving longitudinal diffusion of cyclic GMP in the outer segment). The response to a brief flash is predicted to follow a delayed Gaussian function of time, i.e. after an initial short delay the response should begin rising in proportion to t2. Further, the response-intensity relation is predicted to obey an exponential saturation. 5. These predictions are compared with experiment, and it is shown that the rising phase of the flash response is accurately described over a very wide range of intensities. We conclude that the model provides a comprehensive description of the activation steps of phototransduction at a molecular level. Images Fig. 1 PMID:1326052

  20. Glial-, neuronal- and photoreceptor-specific cell markers in rosettes of retinoblastoma and retinal dysplasia.

    PubMed

    Ohira, A; Yamamoto, M; Honda, O; Ohnishi, Y; Inomata, H; Honda, Y

    1994-11-01

    Previous studies have shown that a rosette formation represents an attempt to form embryonic retinal tissue, primarily rods and cones. To test the theories as to the origin and characteristics of retinoblastoma cells, we compared the characteristics of tumor rosettes with those of dysplastic rosettes seen in retinal dysplasia using the glial, neuronal and photoreceptor markers. Forty-four retinoblastoma and one retinal dysplasia specimens were analyzed by indirect immunohistochemistry, using specific antibodies against glial fibrillary acidic protein, S-100 protein, myelin basic protein, neuron-specific enolase, neurofilament, retinal S-antigen and retinal pigment epithelial antigen. In human retinoblastoma, all the glial, neuronal, retinal pigment epithelial, and photoreceptor cell markers, except for the neurofilament, were present in parts of rosette-forming tumor cells. However, their localization was different for each antigen and it was not clear whether each tumor cell possesses several antigens. These immuno-positive tumor cells were cytologically indistinguishable from other rosette-forming cells at the light microscopic level. In retinal dysplasia, neuron specific enolase and retinal S-antigen were diffusely expressed in the dysplastic rosettes, however, other antigen were not seen in those rosettes. The staining pattern by immunocytochemistry is totally different in tumor rosettes from dysplastic ones. We found varying localizations of different immunoreactivities within tumor rosettes. These results led us to suggest that tumor cells in the rosettes of retinoblastoma may have the ability to differentiate into neural and glial cells. To prove the theory that retinoblastoma cells may have originated from a primitive neuroectodermal cell capable of multipotentiality, further investigation is needed.

  1. Phosphoinositides, Ezrin/Moesin, and rac1 Regulate Fusion of Rhodopsin Transport Carriers in Retinal Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Deretic, Dusanka; Traverso, Valerie; Parkins, Nilda; Jackson, Fannie; de Turco, Elena B. Rodriguez; Ransom, Nancy

    2004-01-01

    The post-Golgi trafficking of rhodopsin in photoreceptor cells is mediated by rhodopsin-bearing transport carriers (RTCs) and regulated by the small GTPase rab8. In this work, we took a combined pharmacological-proteomic approach to uncover new regulators of RTC trafficking toward the specialized light-sensitive organelle, the rod outer segment (ROS). We perturbed phospholipid synthesis by activating phospholipase D with sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) or inhibiting phosphatidic acid phosphohydrolase by propranolol (Ppl). S1P stimulated the overall rate of membrane trafficking toward the ROS. Ppl stimulated budding of RTCs, but blocked membrane delivery to the ROS. Ppl caused accumulation of RTCs in the vicinity of the fusion sites, suggesting a defect in tethering, similar to the previously described phenotype of the rab8T22N mutant. Proteomic analysis of RTCs accumulated upon Ppl treatment showed a significant decrease in phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate–binding proteins ezrin and/or moesin. Ppl induced redistribution of moesin, actin and the small GTPase rac1 from RTCs into the cytosol. By confocal microscopy, ezrin/moesin and rac1 colocalized with rab8 on RTCs at the sites of their fusion with the plasma membrane; however, this distribution was lost upon Ppl treatment. Our data suggest that in photoreceptors phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate, moesin, actin, and rac1 act in concert with rab8 to regulate tethering and fusion of RTCs. Consequentially, they are necessary for rhodopsin-laden membrane delivery to the ROS, thus controlling the critical steps in the biogenesis of the light-detecting organelle. PMID:13679519

  2. Photoreceptor topography and spectral sensitivity in the common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula).

    PubMed

    Vlahos, Lisa M; Knott, Ben; Valter, Krisztina; Hemmi, Jan M

    2014-10-15

    Marsupials are believed to be the only non-primate mammals with both trichromatic and dichromatic color vision. The diversity of color vision systems present in marsupials remains mostly unexplored. Marsupials occupy a diverse range of habitats, which may have led to considerable variation in the presence, density, distribution, and spectral sensitivity of retinal photoreceptors. In this study we analyzed the distribution of photoreceptors in the common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula). Immunohistochemistry in wholemounts revealed three cone subpopulations recognized within two spectrally distinct cone classes. Long-wavelength sensitive (LWS) single cones were the largest cone subgroup (67-86%), and formed a weak horizontal visual streak (peak density 2,106 ± 435/mm2) across the central retina. LWS double cones were strongly concentrated ventrally (569 ± 66/mm2), and created a "negative" visual streak (134 ± 45/mm2) in the central retina. The strong regionalization between LWS cone topographies suggests differing visual functions. Short-wavelength sensitive (SWS) cones were present in much lower densities (3-10%), mostly located ventrally (179 ± 101/mm2). A minority population of cones (0-2.4%) remained unlabeled by both SWS- and LWS-specific antibodies, and may represent another cone population. Microspectrophotometry of LWS cone and rod visual pigments shows peak spectral sensitivities at 544 nm and 500 nm, respectively. Cone to ganglion cell convergences remain low and constant across the retina, thereby maintaining good visual acuity, but poor contrast sensitivity during photopic vision. Given that brushtail possums are so strongly nocturnal, we hypothesize that their acuity is set by the scotopic visual system, and have minimized the number of cones necessary to serve the ganglion cells for photopic vision. PMID:24737644

  3. CNGB3-Achromatopsia Clinical Trial With CNTF: Diminished Rod Pathway Responses With No Evidence of Improvement in Cone Function

    PubMed Central

    Zein, Wadih M.; Jeffrey, Brett G.; Wiley, Henry E.; Turriff, Amy E.; Tumminia, Santa J.; Tao, Weng; Bush, Ronald A.; Marangoni, Dario; Wen, Rong; Wei, Lisa L.; Sieving, Paul A.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) protects rod photoreceptors from retinal degenerative disease in multiple nonhuman models. Thus far, CNTF has failed to demonstrate rod protection in trials for human retinitis pigmentosa. Recently, CNTF was found to improve cone photoreceptor function in a canine CNGB3 achromatopsia model. This study explores whether this finding translates to humans with CNGB3 achromatopsia. Methods. A five-subject, open-label Phase I/II study was initiated by implanting intraocular microcapsules releasing CNTF (nominally 20 ng/d) into one eye each of CNGB3 achromat participants. Fellow eyes served as untreated controls. Subjects were followed for 1 year. Results. Pupil constriction in treated eyes gave evidence of intraocular CNTF release. Additionally, scotopic ERG responses were reduced, and dark-adapted psychophysical absolute thresholds were increased, attributable to diminished rod or rod pathway activity. Optical coherence tomography revealed that the cone-rich fovea underwent structural changes as the foveal hyporeflective zone (HRZ) became diminished in CNTF-treated eyes. No objectively measurable enhancement of cone function was found by assessments of visual acuity, mesopic increment sensitivity threshold, or the photopic ERG. Careful measurements of color hue discrimination showed no change. Nonetheless, subjects reported beneficial changes of visual function in the treated eyes, including reduced light sensitivity and aversion to bright light, which may trace to decreased effective ambient light from the pupillary constriction; further they noted slowed adaptation to darkness, consistent with CNTF action on rod photoreceptors. Conclusions. Ciliary neurotrophic factor did not measurably enhance cone function, which reveals a species difference between human and canine CNGB3 cones in response to CNTF. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01648452.) PMID:25205868

  4. Drosophila Fatty Acid Transport Protein Regulates Rhodopsin-1 Metabolism and Is Required for Photoreceptor Neuron Survival

    PubMed Central

    Dourlen, Pierre; Bertin, Benjamin; Chatelain, Gilles; Robin, Marion; Napoletano, Francesco; Roux, Michel J.; Mollereau, Bertrand

    2012-01-01

    Tight regulation of the visual response is essential for photoreceptor function and survival. Visual response dysregulation often leads to photoreceptor cell degeneration, but the causes of such cell death are not well understood. In this study, we investigated a fatty acid transport protein (fatp) null mutation that caused adult-onset and progressive photoreceptor cell death. Consistent with fatp having a role in the retina, we showed that fatp is expressed in adult photoreceptors and accessory cells and that its re-expression in photoreceptors rescued photoreceptor viability in fatp mutants. The visual response in young fatp-mutant flies was abnormal with elevated electroretinogram amplitudes associated with high levels of Rhodopsin-1 (Rh1). Reducing Rh1 levels in rh1 mutants or depriving flies of vitamin A rescued photoreceptor cell death in fatp mutant flies. Our results indicate that fatp promotes photoreceptor survival by regulating Rh1 abundance. PMID:22844251

  5. Accumulation of Rhodopsin in Late Endosomes Triggers Photoreceptor Cell Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Chinchore, Yashodhan; Mitra, Amitavo; Dolph, Patrick J.

    2009-01-01

    Progressive retinal degeneration is the underlying feature of many human retinal dystrophies. Previous work using Drosophila as a model system and analysis of specific mutations in human rhodopsin have uncovered a connection between rhodopsin endocytosis and retinal degeneration. In these mutants, rhodopsin and its regulatory protein arrestin form stable complexes, and endocytosis of these complexes causes photoreceptor cell death. In this study we show that the internalized rhodopsin is not degraded in the lysosome but instead accumulates in the late endosomes. Using mutants that are defective in late endosome to lysosome trafficking, we were able to show that rhodopsin accumulates in endosomal compartments in these mutants and leads to light-dependent retinal degeneration. Moreover, we also show that in dying photoreceptors the internalized rhodopsin is not degraded but instead shows characteristics of insoluble proteins. Together these data implicate buildup of rhodopsin in the late endosomal system as a novel trigger of death of photoreceptor neurons. PMID:19214218

  6. Extra-mitochondrial aerobic metabolism in retinal rod outer segments: new perspectives in retinopathies.

    PubMed

    Panfoli, I; Calzia, D; Ravera, S; Morelli, A M; Traverso, C E

    2012-04-01

    Vertebrate retinal rods are photoreceptors for dim-light vision. They display extreme sensitivity to light thanks to a specialized subcellular organelle, the rod outer segment. This is filled with a stack of membranous disks, expressing the proteins involved in visual transduction, a very energy demanding process. Our previous proteomic and biochemical studies have shed new light on the chemical energy processes that supply ATP to the outer segment, suggesting the presence of an extra-mitochondrial aerobic metabolism in rod outer segment, devoid of mitochondria, which would account for a quantitatively adequate ATP supply for phototransduction. Here the functional presence of an oxidative phosphorylation in the rod outer limb is examined for its relationship to many physiological and pathological data on the rod outer segment. We hypothesize that the rod outer limb is at risk of oxidative stress, in any case of impairment in the respiratory chain functioning, or of blood supply. In fact, the electron transfer chain is a major source of reactive O(2) species, known to produce severe alteration to the membrane lipids, especially those of the outer segment that are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids. We propose that the disk membrane may become the target of reactive oxygen species that may be released by the electron transport chain under pathologic conditions. For example, during aging reactive oxygen species production increases, while cellular antioxidant capacity decreases. Also the apoptosis of the rod observed after exposure to bright or continuous illumination can be explained considering that an overfunctioning of phototransduction may damage the disk membrane to a point at which cytochrome c escapes from the intradiskal space, where it is presently supposed to be, activating a putative caspase 9 and the apoptosome. A pathogenic mechanism for many inherited and acquired retinal degenerations, representing a major problem in clinical ophthalmology, is

  7. Assessing Photoreceptor Structure in Retinitis Pigmentosa and Usher Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Lynn W.; Johnson, Ryan D.; Langlo, Christopher S.; Cooper, Robert F.; Razeen, Moataz M.; Russillo, Madia C.; Dubra, Alfredo; Connor, Thomas B.; Han, Dennis P.; Pennesi, Mark E.; Kay, Christine N.; Weinberg, David V.; Stepien, Kimberly E.; Carroll, Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study was to examine cone photoreceptor structure in retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and Usher syndrome using confocal and nonconfocal split-detector adaptive optics scanning light ophthalmoscopy (AOSLO). Methods Nineteen subjects (11 RP, 8 Usher syndrome) underwent ophthalmic and genetic testing, spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT), and AOSLO imaging. Split-detector images obtained in 11 subjects (7 RP, 4 Usher syndrome) were used to assess remnant cone structure in areas of altered cone reflectivity on confocal AOSLO. Results Despite normal interdigitation zone and ellipsoid zone appearance on OCT, foveal and parafoveal cone densities derived from confocal AOSLO images were significantly lower in Usher syndrome compared with RP. This was due in large part to an increased prevalence of non-waveguiding cones in the Usher syndrome retina. Although significantly correlated to best-corrected visual acuity and foveal sensitivity, cone density can decrease by nearly 38% before visual acuity becomes abnormal. Aberrantly waveguiding cones were noted within the transition zone of all eyes and corresponded to intact inner segment structures. These remnant cones decreased in density and increased in diameter across the transition zone and disappeared with external limiting membrane collapse. Conclusions Foveal cone density can be decreased in RP and Usher syndrome before visible changes on OCT or a decline in visual function. Thus, AOSLO imaging may allow more sensitive monitoring of disease than current methods. However, confocal AOSLO is limited by dependence on cone waveguiding, whereas split-detector AOSLO offers unambiguous and quantifiable visualization of remnant cone inner segment structure. Confocal and split-detector thus offer complementary insights into retinal pathology. PMID:27145477

  8. A neuronal circuit for colour vision based on rod-cone opponency.

    PubMed

    Joesch, Maximilian; Meister, Markus

    2016-04-14

    In bright light, cone-photoreceptors are active and colour vision derives from a comparison of signals in cones with different visual pigments. This comparison begins in the retina, where certain retinal ganglion cells have 'colour-opponent' visual responses-excited by light of one colour and suppressed by another colour. In dim light, rod-photoreceptors are active, but colour vision is impossible because they all use the same visual pigment. Instead, the rod signals are thought to splice into retinal circuits at various points, in synergy with the cone signals. Here we report a new circuit for colour vision that challenges these expectations. A genetically identified type of mouse retinal ganglion cell called JAMB (J-RGC), was found to have colour-opponent responses, OFF to ultraviolet (UV) light and ON to green light. Although the mouse retina contains a green-sensitive cone, the ON response instead originates in rods. Rods and cones both contribute to the response over several decades of light intensity. Remarkably, the rod signal in this circuit is antagonistic to that from cones. For rodents, this UV-green channel may play a role in social communication, as suggested by spectral measurements from the environment. In the human retina, all of the components for this circuit exist as well, and its function can explain certain experiences of colour in dim lights, such as a 'blue shift' in twilight. The discovery of this genetically defined pathway will enable new targeted studies of colour processing in the brain. PMID:27049951

  9. Optical Coherence Tomography and Visual Acuity: Photoreceptor Loss

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salam, Adzura; Wolf-Schnurrbusch, Ute Ellen Kathrin; Wolf, Sebastian

    SD-OCT has improved the visualization of intraretinal morphologic features quantitatively and qualitatively. SD-OCT allows the retinal physician to evaluate the integrity of each retinal layer such as the external limiting membrane (ELM) and the junction between the inner and outer segments (IS/OS junction) of the photoreceptors The presence and integrity of the external limiting membrane (ELM), the photoreceptor inner segment(IS), the outer segment(OS), and the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) appears to be a good prognostic feature for visual improvement after treatment for various macular diseases.

  10. Algal photoreceptors: in vivo functions and potential applications.

    PubMed

    Kianianmomeni, Arash; Hallmann, Armin

    2014-01-01

    Many algae, particularly microalgae, possess a sophisticated light-sensing system including photoreceptors and light-modulated signaling pathways to sense environmental information and secure the survival in a rapidly changing environment. Over the last couple of years, the multifaceted world of algal photobiology has enriched our understanding of the light absorption mechanisms and in vivo function of photoreceptors. Moreover, specific light-sensitive modules have already paved the way for the development of optogenetic tools to generate light switches for precise and spatial control of signaling pathways in individual cells and even in complex biological systems. PMID:24081482

  11. Light-dependent phosphorylation of the gamma subunit of cGMP-Phophodiesterase (PDE6γ) at residue threonine 22 in intact photoreceptor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Janisch, Kerstin M; Kasanuki, J. Mie; Naumann, Matthew C; Davis, Richard J; Lin, Chyuan-Sheng; Semple-Rowland, Susan; Tsang, Stephen H

    2009-01-01

    The γ subunit of rod-specific cGMP phosphodiesterase 6 (PDE6γ), an effector of the G-protein GNAT1, is a key regulator of phototransduction. The results of several in vitro biochemical reconstitution experiments conducted to examine the effects of phosphorylation of PDE6γ on its ability to regulate the PDE6 catalytic core have been inconsistent, showing that phosphorylation of PDE6γ may increase or decrease the ability of PDE6γ to deactivate phototransduction. To resolve role of phosphorylation of PDE6γ in living photoreceptors, we generated transgenic mice in which either one or both Threonine (T) sites in PDE6γ (T22 and T35), which are candidates for putative regulatory phosphorylation, were substituted with alanine (A). Phosphorylation of these sites was examined as a function of light exposure. We found that phosphorylation of T22 increases with light exposure in intact mouse rods while constitutive phosphorylation of T35 is unaffected by light in intact mouse rods and cones. Phosphorylation of the cone isoform of PDE6γ, PDE6H, is constitutively phosphorylated at the T20 residue. Light-induced T22 phosphorylation was lost in T35A transgenic rods, and T35 phosphorylation was extinguished in T22A transgenic rods. The interdependency of phosphorylation of T22 and T35 suggests that light-induced, post-translational modification of PDE6γ is essential for the regulation of G-protein signaling. PMID:19878658

  12. 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.

  13. cGMP is tightly bound to bovine retinal rod phosphodiesterase.

    PubMed Central

    Gillespie, P G; Beavo, J A

    1989-01-01

    Although the total concentration of cGMP in rod outer segments is thought to be substantially greater than the free concentration, no quantitatively relevant site for the bound cGMP has been described in mammalian photoreceptors. We have found that preparations of purified bovine rod photoreceptor cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase (PDE) contain 1.8 +/- 0.3 mol of tightly bound cGMP per mol of PDE. When subunits of the purified PDE were separated by reverse-phase HPLC in 0.1% trifluoroacetic acid and acetonitrile, a peak of material having spectral properties characteristic of a guanine ring was seen. This material was identified as cGMP by comigration with authentic cGMP on HPLC, conversion to 5-GMP by trypsin-activated rod PDE, and conversion to guanosine by a combination of trypsin-activated PDE and 5'-nucleotidase-containing snake venom. When incubated with 1 microM [3H]cGMP, only 0.1 mol of [3H]cGMP bound per mol of purified PDE, presumably because nearly all binding sites were occupied by tightly bound endogenous cGMP carried through the purification. Scatchard plots of [3H]cGMP binding have indicated that two classes of binding sites are present on the rod PDE. The off-rate of cGMP from the slowly dissociating site is extremely slow; it has a t1/2 of approximately 4 hr at 37 degrees C. At lower temperatures, very little cGMP dissociates; the amount of [3H]cGMP bound to rod PDE after 2 hr at 4 degrees C was essentially the same as at the beginning of the incubation. The observation that stoichiometric amounts of cGMP are tightly bound to PDE accounts for the inability to purify the bovine rod PDE on cGMP affinity columns or to demonstrate stoichiometric high-affinity binding sites with [3H]cGMP. More significantly, the tightly bound cGMP may resolve the apparent discrepancy between the free and total cGMP concentrations of photoreceptor outer segments. PMID:2542968

  14. Two types of transgenic lines for doxycycline-inducible, cell-specific gene expression in zebrafish ultraviolet cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    West, Megan C; Campbell, Leah J; Willoughby, John J; Jensen, Abbie M

    2014-03-01

    Temporal and spatial control of gene expression is important for studying the molecular and cellular mechanisms of development, physiology, and disease. We used the doxycycline (Dox)-inducible, Tet-On system to develop transgenic zebrafish for inducible, cell specific control of gene expression in the ultraviolet (UV) cone photoreceptors. Two constructs containing the reverse tetracycline-controlled transcriptional transactivator (rtTA) gene driven by the UV opsin-specific promoter (opn1sw1) were used to generate stable transgenic zebrafish lines using the Tol2-based transgenesis method. One construct included a self-reporting GFP (opn1sw1:rtTA, TRE:GFP) and the other incorporated an epitope tag on the rtTA protein (opn1sw1:rtTA(flag)). UV cone-specific expression of TRE-controlled transgenes was induced by Dox treatment in larvae and adults. Induction of gene expression was observed in 96% of all larval UV cones within 16 h of Dox treatment. UV cone-specific expression of two genes from a bidirectional TRE construct injected into one-cell Tg(opn1sw1:rtTA(flag)) embryos were also induced by Dox treatment. In addition, UV cone-specific expression of Crb2a(IntraWT) was induced by Dox treatment in progeny from crosses of the TRE-response transgenic line, Tg(TRE:HA-Crb2a(IntraWT)), to the Tg(opn1sw1:rtTA, TRE:GFP) line and the Tg(opn1sw1:rtTA(flag)) line. These lines can be used in addition to the inducible, rod-specific gene expression system from the Tet-On Toolkit to elucidate the photoreceptor-specific effects of genes of interest in photoreceptor cell biology and retinal disease.

  15. Location of Release Sites and Calcium-Activated Chloride Channels Relative to Calcium Channels at the Photoreceptor Ribbon Synapse

    PubMed Central

    Mercer, A. J.; Rabl, K.; Riccardi, G. E.; Brecha, N. C.; Stella, S. L.

    2011-01-01

    Vesicle release from photoreceptor ribbon synapses is regulated by L-type Ca2+ channels, which are in turn regulated by Cl− moving through calcium-activated chloride [Cl(Ca)] channels. We assessed the proximity of Ca2+ channels to release sites and Cl(Ca) channels in synaptic terminals of salamander photoreceptors by comparing fast (BAPTA) and slow (EGTA) intracellular Ca2+ buffers. BAPTA did not fully block synaptic release, indicating some release sites are <100 nm from Ca2+ channels. Comparing Cl(Ca) currents with predicted Ca2+ diffusion profiles suggested that Cl(Ca) and Ca2+ channels average a few hundred nanometers apart, but the inability of BAPTA to block Cl(Ca) currents completely suggested some channels are much closer together. Diffuse immunolabeling of terminals with an antibody to the putative Cl(Ca) channel TMEM16A supports the idea that Cl(Ca) channels are dispersed throughout the presynaptic terminal, in contrast with clustering of Ca2+ channels near ribbons. Cl(Ca) currents evoked by intracellular calcium ion concentration ([Ca2+]i) elevation through flash photolysis of DM-nitrophen exhibited EC50 values of 556 and 377 nM with Hill slopes of 1.8 and 2.4 in rods and cones, respectively. These relationships were used to estimate average submembrane [Ca2+]i in photoreceptor terminals. Consistent with control of exocytosis by [Ca2+] nanodomains near Ca2+ channels, average submembrane [Ca2+]i remained below the vesicle release threshold (∼400 nM) over much of the physiological voltage range for cones. Positioning Ca2+ channels near release sites may improve fidelity in converting voltage changes to synaptic release. A diffuse distribution of Cl(Ca) channels may allow Ca2+ influx at one site to influence relatively distant Ca2+ channels. PMID:21084687

  16. Defining the Catalytic Activity of Nanoceria in the P23H-1 Rat, a Photoreceptor Degeneration Model

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Lily L.; Pye, Quentin N.; Chen, Lijuan; Seal, Sudipta; McGinnis, James F.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Inorganic catalytic nanoceria or cerium oxide nanoparticles (CeNPs) are bona fide antioxidants that possess regenerative radical scavenging activities in vitro. Previously, we demonstrated that CeNPs had neuroprotective and anti-angiogenic properties in rodent retinal degeneration and neovascularization models. However, the cellular mechanisms and duration of the catalytic activity of CeNPs in preventing photoreceptor cell loss are still unknown. In this study, we sought to answer these questions using the P23H-1 rat, an autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP) model. Methods A single dose of either saline or CeNPs was delivered intravitreally into the eyes of P23H-1 rats at 2–3 weeks of age. Retinal functions were examined at 3 to 7 weeks post injection. We quantified retinal proteins by Western blot analyses and counted the number of apoptotic (TUNEL+) profiles in the outer nuclear layer (ONL) of retinal sections. We measured free 8-isoprostanes to quantify lipid peroxidation in retinal tissues. Results We observed increased rod and cone cell functions up to three weeks post injection. Apoptotic cells were reduced by 46%, 56%, 21%, and 24% at 3, 7, 14, 21 days, respectively, after CeNPs injection compared to saline. Additionally, reduction of lipid peroxidation in the retinas of CeNPs-treated vs saline-treated animals was detected 14 days post injection. Conclusions We validated that CeNPs were effective in delaying loss of photoreceptor cell function in an adRP rat model. This represents the fourth rodent retinal disease model that shows delay in disease progression after a single application of CeNPs. We further demonstrated that CeNPs slowed the rate of photoreceptor cell death. We deduced that the catalytic activity of CeNPs in vivo in this rat model to be undiminished for at least 7 days and then declined over the next 14 days after CeNPs administration. PMID:25822196

  17. Successful arrest of photoreceptor and vision loss expands the therapeutic window of retinal gene therapy to later stages of disease.

    PubMed

    Beltran, William A; Cideciyan, Artur V; Iwabe, Simone; Swider, Malgorzata; Kosyk, Mychajlo S; McDaid, Kendra; Martynyuk, Inna; Ying, Gui-Shuang; Shaffer, James; Deng, Wen-Tao; Boye, Sanford L; Lewin, Alfred S; Hauswirth, William W; Jacobson, Samuel G; Aguirre, Gustavo D

    2015-10-27

    Inherited retinal degenerations cause progressive loss of photoreceptor neurons with eventual blindness. Corrective or neuroprotective gene therapies under development could be delivered at a predegeneration stage to prevent the onset of disease, as well as at intermediate-degeneration stages to slow the rate of progression. Most preclinical gene therapy successes to date have been as predegeneration interventions. In many animal models, as well as in human studies, to date, retinal gene therapy administered well after the onset of degeneration was not able to modify the rate of progression even when successfully reversing dysfunction. We evaluated consequences of gene therapy delivered at intermediate stages of disease in a canine model of X-linked retinitis pigmentosa (XLRP) caused by a mutation in the Retinitis Pigmentosa GTPase Regulator (RPGR) gene. Spatiotemporal natural history of disease was defined and therapeutic dose selected based on predegeneration results. Then interventions were timed at earlier and later phases of intermediate-stage disease, and photoreceptor degeneration monitored with noninvasive imaging, electrophysiological function, and visual behavior for more than 2 y. All parameters showed substantial and significant arrest of the progressive time course of disease with treatment, which resulted in long-term improved retinal function and visual behavior compared with control eyes. Histology confirmed that the human RPGR transgene was stably expressed in photoreceptors and associated with improved structural preservation of rods, cones, and ON bipolar cells together with correction of opsin mislocalization. These findings in a clinically relevant large animal model demonstrate the long-term efficacy of RPGR gene augmentation and substantially broaden the therapeutic window for intervention in patients with RPGR-XLRP.

  18. Successful arrest of photoreceptor and vision loss expands the therapeutic window of retinal gene therapy to later stages of disease

    PubMed Central

    Beltran, William A.; Cideciyan, Artur V.; Iwabe, Simone; Swider, Malgorzata; Kosyk, Mychajlo S.; McDaid, Kendra; Martynyuk, Inna; Ying, Gui-Shuang; Shaffer, James; Deng, Wen-Tao; Boye, Sanford L.; Lewin, Alfred S.; Hauswirth, William W.; Jacobson, Samuel G.; Aguirre, Gustavo D.

    2015-01-01

    Inherited retinal degenerations cause progressive loss of photoreceptor neurons with eventual blindness. Corrective or neuroprotective gene therapies under development could be delivered at a predegeneration stage to prevent the onset of disease, as well as at intermediate-degeneration stages to slow the rate of progression. Most preclinical gene therapy successes to date have been as predegeneration interventions. In many animal models, as well as in human studies, to date, retinal gene therapy administered well after the onset of degeneration was not able to modify the rate of progression even when successfully reversing dysfunction. We evaluated consequences of gene therapy delivered at intermediate stages of disease in a canine model of X-linked retinitis pigmentosa (XLRP) caused by a mutation in the Retinitis Pigmentosa GTPase Regulator (RPGR) gene. Spatiotemporal natural history of disease was defined and therapeutic dose selected based on predegeneration results. Then interventions were timed at earlier and later phases of intermediate-stage disease, and photoreceptor degeneration monitored with noninvasive imaging, electrophysiological function, and visual behavior for more than 2 y. All parameters showed substantial and significant arrest of the progressive time course of disease with treatment, which resulted in long-term improved retinal function and visual behavior compared with control eyes. Histology confirmed that the human RPGR transgene was stably expressed in photoreceptors and associated with improved structural preservation of rods, cones, and ON bipolar cells together with correction of opsin mislocalization. These findings in a clinically relevant large animal model demonstrate the long-term efficacy of RPGR gene augmentation and substantially broaden the therapeutic window for intervention in patients with RPGR-XLRP. PMID:26460017

  19. 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.

  20. Reactor control rod timing system

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, P.T.

    1982-02-09

    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.

  1. Relief of Mg²⁺-dependent inhibition of TRPM1 by PKCα at the rod bipolar cell synapse.

    PubMed

    Rampino, Melissa Ann F; Nawy, Scott A

    2011-09-21

    In the retina, light onset hyperpolarizes photoreceptors and depolarizes ON bipolar cells at the sign inverting photoreceptor-ON bipolar cell synapse. Transmission at this synapse is mediated by a signaling cascade comprised of mGluR6, a G-protein containing G(αo), and the cation channel TRP melastatin 1 (TRPM1). This system is thought to be common to both the rod- and ON-cone-driven pathways, which control vision under scotopic and photopic conditions, respectively. In this study, we present evidence that the rod pathway is uniquely susceptible to modulation by PKCα at the rod-rod bipolar cell synapse. Decreased production of DAG (an activator of PKC) by inhibition of PIP₂ (phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate) hydrolysis caused depression of the TRPM1 current. Conversely, addition of a DAG analog, 2-acetyl-1-oleoyl-sn-glycerol (OAG), potentiated the current in rod bipolar cells but not in ON-cone bipolar cells. The potentiating effects of OAG were absent both in mutant mice that lack PKCα expression and in wild-type mice in which enzymatic activity of PKCα was pharmacologically inhibited. In addition, we found that, like other members of the TRPM subfamily, TRPM1 current is susceptible to voltage-independent inhibition by intracellular magnesium, and that modulation by PKCα relieves this inhibition, as the potentiating effects of OAG are absent in low intracellular magnesium. We conclude that activation of PKCα initiates a modulatory mechanism at the rod-rod bipolar cell synapse whose function is to reduce inhibition of the TRPM1 current by magnesium, thereby increasing the gain of transmission at this synapse. PMID:21940450

  2. Countercurrent flow-limiting characteristics of a Savannah River Plant control rod septifoil

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, J.L.

    1992-07-01

    Experiments were performed at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory to investigate the counter-current flow limiting characteristics of a Savannah River Plant control rod septifoil assembly. These experiments were unheated, using air and water as the working fluids. Results are presented in terms of the Wallis flooding correlation for several different control rod configurations. Flooding was observed to occur in the vicinity of the inlet slots/holes of the septifoil, rather than within the rod bundle at the location of the minimum flow area. Nearly identical flooding characteristics of the septifoil were observed for configurations with zero, three, and four rods inserted, but significantly different results occurred with 5 rods inserted.

  3. 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.

  4. Bead-rod-spring models in random flows.

    PubMed

    Plan, Emmanuel Lance Christopher Vi Medillo; Ali, Aamir; Vincenzi, Dario

    2016-08-01

    Bead-rod-spring models are the foundation of the kinetic theory of polymer solutions. We derive the diffusion equation for the probability density function of the configuration of a general bead-rod-spring model in short-correlated Gaussian random flows. Under isotropic conditions, we solve this equation analytically for the elastic rhombus model introduced by Curtiss, Bird, and Hassager [Adv. Chem. Phys. 35, 31 (1976)]. PMID:27627227

  5. Bead-rod-spring models in random flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plan, Emmanuel Lance Christopher Medillo, VI; Ali, Aamir; Vincenzi, Dario

    2016-08-01

    Bead-rod-spring models are the foundation of the kinetic theory of polymer solutions. We derive the diffusion equation for the probability density function of the configuration of a general bead-rod-spring model in short-correlated Gaussian random flows. Under isotropic conditions, we solve this equation analytically for the elastic rhombus model introduced by Curtiss, Bird, and Hassager [Adv. Chem. Phys. 35, 31 (1976)].

  6. Alcohol intoxication impairs mesopic rod and cone temporal processing in social drinkers

    PubMed Central

    Zhuang, Xiaohua; Kang, Para; King, Andrea; Cao, Dingcai

    2015-01-01

    Background Alcohol-related driving accidents and fatalities occur most frequently at nighttime and at dawn, i.e. a mesopic lighting condition in which visual processing depends on both rod and cone photoreceptors. The temporal functions of the rod and cone pathways are critical for driving in this lighting condition. However, how alcohol influences the temporal functions in the rod and cone pathways at mesopic light levels is inconclusive. To address this, the present study investigated whether an acute intoxicating dose of alcohol impairs rod- and/or cone-mediated critical fusion frequency (CFF, the lowest frequency of which an intermittent or flickering light stimulus is perceived as steady). Methods In Experiment I, we measured the CFFs for three types of visual stimuli (rod stimulus alone, cone stimulus alone, and the mixture of both stimuli types), under three illuminant light levels (dim illuminance: 2Td; low illuminance: 20Td; and medium illuminance 80Td) in moderate-heavy social drinkers before and after they consumed an intoxicating dose of alcohol (0.8g/kg) compared with a placebo beverage. In Experiment II, we examined if the illuminance level (dark versus light) of the visual area surrounding the test stimuli alters alcohol’s effect on the temporal processing of rods and cones. Results The results showed that compared with placebo, alcohol significantly reduced CFFs of all stimulus types at all illuminance levels. Furthermore, alcohol intoxication produced a larger impairment on rod-pathway-mediated CFFs under light versus dark surround. Conclusions These results indicate that alcohol intake slows down rod and cone-pathway-mediated temporal processing. Further research may elucidate if this effect may play a role in alcohol-related injury and accidents, which often occur under low light conditions. PMID:26247196

  7. 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.

  8. Sucker rod assembly and method

    SciTech Connect

    Pagan, A.J.

    1986-07-01

    An improved sucker rod assembly is described comprising, in combination: a. a sucker rod; and b. a pair of fittings secured to opposite ends of the rod, each fitting including: i. a rigid elongated casing having interior surfaces defining an open front end and cavity extending rearwardly from the open front end in which cavity one end of the sucker rod is disposed, the side portions of the interior surfaces being contoured to define, with the side portions of the sucker rod end a single, annular elongated tapered wedge-shaped space; and ii. anchoring means filling the space and bonding to the side portions of the rod end to lock the rod end in place, the anchoring means having a narrower diameter at the front end thereof than at about the rear end thereof and being generally frusto-conical, the anchoring means comprising a plurality of separate rigid inserts, the interior surfaces of which collectively define a central elongated passageway in which the rod end is received, the interior surfaces of the inserts being tightly bonded to the side portions of the rod, and the inserts being bonded to each other along the contact lines therebetween to form a unitary structure.

  9. Light- and GTP-activated hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol bisphosphate in squid photoreceptor membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Baer, K.M.; Saibil, H.R.

    1988-01-05

    Light stimulates the hydrolysis of exogenous, (/sup 3/H)inositol-labeled phosphatidylinositol bisphosphate (PtdInsP2) added to squid photoreceptor membranes, releasing inositol trisphosphate (InsP3). At free calcium levels of 0.05 microM or greater, hydrolysis of the labeled lipid is stimulated up to 4-fold by GTP and light together, but not separately. This activity is the biochemical counterpart of observations on intact retina showing that a rhodopsin-activated GTP-binding protein is involved in visual transduction in invertebrates, and that InsP3 release is correlated with visual excitation and adaptation. Using an in vitro assay, we investigated the calcium and GTP dependence of the phospholipase activity. At calcium concentrations between 0.1 and 0.5 microM, some hydrolysis occurs independently of GTP and light, with a light- and GTP-activated component superimposed. At 1 microM calcium there is no background activity, and hydrolysis absolutely requires both GTP and light. Ion exchange chromatography on Dowex 1 (formate form) of the water-soluble products released at 1 microM calcium reveals that the product is almost entirely InsP3. Invertebrate rhodopsin is homologous in sequence and function to vertebrate visual pigment, which modulates the concentration of cyclic GMP through the mediation of the GTP-binding protein transducin. While there is some evidence that light also modulates PtdInsP2 content in vertebrate photoreceptors, the case for its involvement in phototransduction is stronger for the invertebrate systems. The results reported here support the scheme of rhodopsin----GTP-binding protein----phospholipase C activation in invertebrate photoreceptors.

  10. Optical Imaging of Human Cone Photoreceptors Directly Following the Capture of Light

    PubMed Central

    Bedggood, Phillip; Metha, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    Capture of light in the photoreceptor outer segment initiates a cascade of chemical events that inhibit neurotransmitter release, ultimately resulting in vision. The massed response of the photoreceptor population can be measured non-invasively by electrical recordings, but responses from individual cells cannot be measured without dissecting the retina. Here we used optical imaging to observe individual human cones in the living eye as they underwent bleaching of photopigment and associated phototransduction. The retina was simultaneously stimulated and observed with high intensity visible light at 1 kHz, using adaptive optics. There was marked variability between individual cones in both photosensitivity and pigment optical density, challenging the conventional assumption that photoreceptors act as identical subunits (coefficient of variation in rate of photoisomerization = 23%). There was also a pronounced inverse correlation between these two parameters (p<10−7); the temporal evolution of image statistics revealed this to be a dynamic relationship, with cone waveguiding efficiency beginning a dramatic increase within 3 ms of light onset. Beginning as early as 2 ms after light onset and including half of cells by ∼7 ms, cone intensity showed reversals characteristic of interference phenomena, with greater delays in reversal corresponding to cones with more photopigment (p<10−3). The timing of these changes is argued to best correspond with either the cessation of dark current, or to related events such as changes in intracellular cGMP. Cone intensity also showed fluctuations of high frequency (332±25 Hz) and low amplitude (3.0±0.85%). Other groups have shown similar fluctuations that were directly evoked by light; if this corresponds to the same phenomenon, we propose that the amplitude of fluctuation may be increased by the use of a bright flash followed by a brief pause, to allow recovery of cone circulating current. PMID:24260177

  11. Pharmacological inhibitions of glutamate transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2 compromise glutamate transport in photoreceptor to ON- bipolar cell synapses

    PubMed Central

    Tse, Dennis Y.; Chung, Inyoung; Wu, Samuel M.

    2015-01-01

    To maintain reliable signal transmission across a synapse, free synaptic neurotransmitters must be removed from the cleft in a timely manner. In the first visual synapse, this critical task is mainly undertaken by glutamate transporters (EAATs). Here we study the differential roles of the EAAT1, EAAT2 and EAAT5 subtypes in glutamate (GLU) uptake at the photoreceptor-to-depolarizing bipolar cell synapse in intact dark-adapted retina. Various doses of EAAT blockers and/or GLU were injected into the eye before the electroretinogram (ERG) was measured. Their effectiveness and potency in inhibiting the ERG b-wave were studied to determine their relative contributions to the GLU clearing activity at the synapse. The results showed that EAAT1 and EAAT2 plays different roles. Selectively blocking glial EAAT1 alone using UCPH101 inhibited the b-wave 2–24 hours following injection, suggesting a dominating role of EAAT1 in the overall GLU clearing capacity in the synaptic cleft. Selectively blocking EAAT2 on photoreceptor terminals had no significant effect on the b-wave, but increased the potency of exogenous GLU in inhibiting the b-wave. These suggest that EAAT2 play a secondary yet significant role in the GLU reuptake activity at the rod and the cone output synapses. Additionally, we have verified our electrophysiological findings with double-label immunohistochemistry, and extend the literature on the spatial distribution of EAAT2 splice variants in the mouse retina. PMID:25152321

  12. Proteomic identification of unique photoreceptor disc components reveals the presence of PRCD, a protein linked to retinal degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Skiba, Nikolai P.; Spencer, William J.; Salinas, Raquel Y.; Lieu, Eric C.; Thompson, J. Will; Arshavsky, Vadim Y.

    2013-01-01

    Visual signal transduction takes place on the surface of flat membrane vesicles called photoreceptor discs, which reside inside the light-sensitive outer segment organelle of vertebrate photoreceptor cells. While biochemical studies have indicated that discs are built with a handful of highly specialized proteins, proteomic studies have yielded databases consisting of hundreds of entries. We addressed this controversy by employing protein correlation profiling which allows identification of unique components of organelles that can be fractionated but not purified to absolute homogeneity. We subjected discs to sequential steps of fractionation and identified the relative amounts of proteins in each fraction by label-free quantitative mass spectrometry. This analysis demonstrated that the photoreceptor disc proteome contains only eleven components, which satisfy the hallmark criterion for being unique disc-resident components: the retention of a constant molar ratio among themselves across fractionation steps. Remarkably, one of them is PRCD, a protein whose mutations have been shown to cause blindness, yet cellular localization remained completely unknown. Identification of PRCD as a novel disc-specific protein facilitates understanding its functional role and the pathobiological significance of its mutations. Our study provides a striking example how protein correlation profiling allows a distinction between constitutive components of cellular organelles and their inevitable contaminants. PMID:23672200

  13. Morphological and biochemical studies of canine progressive rod-cone degeneration. /sup 3/H-fucose autoradiography

    SciTech Connect

    Aguirre, G.; O'Brien, P.

    1986-05-01

    Visual cell pathology and rod outer segment renewal were investigated in normal and PRCD-affected miniature poodles using /sup 3/H-fucose autoradiography. Twenty-four hours following the intravitreal injection of /sup 3/H-fucose, label accumulated diffusely over cone OS and in a banded pattern at the rod OS base. In normal rods, the band of /sup 3/H-label was displaced sclerad with time. PRCD-affected rods in the early stages of the disease (stages 0-1) also showed a similar /sup 3/H-label pattern but a significantly (P less than 0.001) reduced renewal rate (control = 2.35 +/- 0.43 mu/24 hr; affected = 0.99 +/- mu/24 hr). This abnormal renewal rate was present in central, equatorial, and peripheral visual cells and was not associated with the presence or density of pigment in the RPE cell layer. Biochemical studies indicated that the /sup 3/H-label was present as an integral membrane component in the rod OS and confirmed that canine rhodopsin is a fucosylated glycoprotein. The /sup 3/H-band in the rod OS layer disappeared in stage 2 of the disease; diffuse label now was present over rod OS that had decreased length and were reduced in number. At this stage of the disease, interphotoreceptor space was invaded by phagocytic cells, and photoreceptor nuclei were lost from the outer nuclear layer. These late degenerative changes were more extensive in the superior and inferior retinal meridians.

  14. Localization, Purification, and Functional Reconstitution of the P4-ATPase Atp8a2, a Phosphatidylserine Flippase in Photoreceptor Disc Membranes*

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Jonathan A.; Kwok, Michael C. M.; Molday, Robert S.

    2009-01-01

    P4-ATPases comprise a relatively new subfamily of P-type ATPases implicated in the energy-dependent translocation of aminophospholipids across cell membranes. In this study, we report on the localization and functional properties of Atp8a2, a member of the P4-ATPase subfamily that has not been studied previously. Reverse transcription-PCR revealed high expression of atp8a2 mRNA in the retina and testis. Within the retina, immunofluorescence microscopy and subcellular fractionation studies localized Atp8a2 to outer segment disc membranes of rod and cone photoreceptor cells. Atp8a2 purified from photoreceptor outer segments by immunoaffinity chromatography exhibited ATPase activity that was stimulated by phosphatidylserine and to a lesser degree phosphatidylethanolamine but not by phosphatidylcholine or other membrane lipids. Purified Atp8a2 was reconstituted into liposomes containing fluorescent-labeled phosphatidylserine to measure the ability of Atp8a2 to flip phosphatidylserine across the lipid bilayer. Fluorescence measurements showed that Atp8a2 flipped fluorescent-labeled phosphatidylserine from the inner leaflet of liposomes (equivalent to the exocytoplasmic leaflet of cell membranes) to the outer leaflet (equivalent to cytoplasmic leaflet) in an ATP-dependent manner. Our studies provide the first direct biochemical evidence that purified P4-ATPases can translocate aminophospholipids across membranes and further implicates Atp8a2 in the generation and maintenance of phosphatidylserine asymmetry in photoreceptor disc membranes. PMID:19778899

  15. Gene therapy into photoreceptors and Müller glial cells restores retinal structure and function in CRB1 retinitis pigmentosa mouse models.

    PubMed

    Pellissier, Lucie P; Quinn, Peter M; Alves, C Henrique; Vos, Rogier M; Klooster, Jan; Flannery, John G; Heimel, J Alexander; Wijnholds, Jan

    2015-06-01

    Mutations in the Crumbs-homologue-1 (CRB1) gene lead to severe recessive inherited retinal dystrophies. Gene transfer therapy is the most promising cure for retinal dystrophies and has primarily been applied for recessive null conditions via a viral gene expression vector transferring a cDNA encoding an enzyme or channel protein, and targeting expression to one cell type. Therapy for the human CRB1 disease will be more complex, as CRB1 is a structural and signaling transmembrane protein present in three cell classes: Müller glia, cone and rod photoreceptors. In this study, we applied CRB1 and CRB2 gene therapy vectors in Crb1-retinitis pigmentosa mouse models at mid-stage disease. We tested if CRB expression restricted to Müller glial cells or photoreceptors or co-expression in both is required to recover retinal function. We show that targeting both Müller glial cells and photoreceptors with CRB2 ameliorated retinal function and structure in Crb1 mouse models. Surprisingly, targeting a single cell type or all cell types with CRB1 reduced retinal function. We show here the first pre-clinical studies for CRB1-related eye disorders using CRB2 vectors and initial elucidation of the cellular mechanisms underlying CRB1 function.

  16. Novel form of adaptation in mouse retinal rods speeds recovery of phototransduction.

    PubMed

    Krispel, Claudia M; Chen, Ching-Kang; Simon, Melvin I; Burns, Marie E

    2003-12-01

    Photoreceptors of the retina adapt to ambient light in a manner that allows them to detect changes in illumination over an enormous range of intensities. We have discovered a novel form of adaptation in mouse rods that persists long after the light has been extinguished and the rod's circulating dark current has returned. Electrophysiological recordings from individual rods showed that the time that a bright flash response remained in saturation was significantly shorter if the rod had been previously exposed to bright light. This persistent adaptation did not decrease the rate of rise of the response and therefore cannot be attributed to a decrease in the gain of transduction. Instead, this adaptation was accompanied by a marked speeding of the recovery of the response, suggesting that the step that rate-limits recovery had been accelerated. Experiments on knockout rods in which the identity of the rate-limiting step is known suggest that this adaptive acceleration results from a speeding of G protein/effector deactivation.

  17. Optics of cone photoreceptors in the chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus).

    PubMed

    Wilby, David; Toomey, Matthew B; Olsson, Peter; Frederiksen, Rikard; Cornwall, M Carter; Oulton, Ruth; Kelber, Almut; Corbo, Joseph C; Roberts, Nicholas W

    2015-10-01

    Vision is the primary sensory modality of birds, and its importance is evident in the sophistication of their visual systems. Coloured oil droplets in the cone photoreceptors represent an adaptation in the avian retina, acting as long-pass colour filters. However, we currently lack understanding of how the optical properties and morphology of component structures (e.g. oil droplet, mitochondrial ellipsoid and outer segment) of the cone photoreceptor influence the transmission of light into the outer segment and the ultimate effect they have on receptor sensitivity. In this study, we use data from microspectrophotometry, digital holographic microscopy and electron microscopy to inform electromagnetic models of avian cone photoreceptors to quantitatively investigate the integrated optical function of the cell. We find that pigmented oil droplets primarily function as spectral filters, not light collection devices, although the mitochondrial ellipsoid improves optical coupling between the inner segment and oil droplet. In contrast, unpigmented droplets found in violet-sensitive cones double sensitivity at its peak relative to other cone types. Oil droplets and ellipsoids both narrow the angular sensitivity of single cone photoreceptors, but not as strongly as those in human cones. PMID:26423439

  18. Light, lipids and photoreceptor survival: live or let die?

    PubMed

    German, Olga Lorena; Agnolazza, Daniela L; Politi, Luis E; Rotstein, Nora P

    2015-09-26

    Due to its constant exposure to light and its high oxygen consumption the retina is highly sensitive to oxidative damage, which is a common factor in inducing the death of photoreceptors after light damage or in inherited retinal degenerations. The high content of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), the major polyunsaturated fatty acid in the retina, has been suggested to contribute to this sensitivity. DHA is crucial for developing and preserving normal visual function. However, further roles of DHA in the retina are still controversial. Current data support that it can tilt the scale either towards degeneration or survival of retinal cells. DHA peroxidation products can be deleterious to the retina and might lead to retinal degeneration. However, DHA has also been shown to act as, or to be the source of, a survival molecule that protects photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium cells from oxidative damage. We have established that DHA protects photoreceptors from oxidative stress-induced apoptosis and promotes their differentiation in vitro. DHA activates the retinoid X receptor (RXR) and the ERK/MAPK pathway, thus regulating the expression of anti and pro-apoptotic proteins. It also orchestrates a diversity of signaling pathways, modulating enzymatic pathways that control the sphingolipid metabolism and activate antioxidant defense mechanisms to promote photoreceptor survival and development. A deeper comprehension of DHA signaling pathways and context-dependent behavior is required to understand its dual functions in retinal physiology.

  19. Optics of cone photoreceptors in the chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus).

    PubMed

    Wilby, David; Toomey, Matthew B; Olsson, Peter; Frederiksen, Rikard; Cornwall, M Carter; Oulton, Ruth; Kelber, Almut; Corbo, Joseph C; Roberts, Nicholas W

    2015-10-01

    Vision is the primary sensory modality of birds, and its importance is evident in the sophistication of their visual systems. Coloured oil droplets in the cone photoreceptors represent an adaptation in the avian retina, acting as long-pass colour filters. However, we currently lack understanding of how the optical properties and morphology of component structures (e.g. oil droplet, mitochondrial ellipsoid and outer segment) of the cone photoreceptor influence the transmission of light into the outer segment and the ultimate effect they have on receptor sensitivity. In this study, we use data from microspectrophotometry, digital holographic microscopy and electron microscopy to inform electromagnetic models of avian cone photoreceptors to quantitatively investigate the integrated optical function of the cell. We find that pigmented oil droplets primarily function as spectral filters, not light collection devices, although the mitochondrial ellipsoid improves optical coupling between the inner segment and oil droplet. In contrast, unpigmented droplets found in violet-sensitive cones double sensitivity at its peak relative to other cone types. Oil droplets and ellipsoids both narrow the angular sensitivity of single cone photoreceptors, but not as strongly as those in human cones.

  20. Chloroplasts continuously monitor photoreceptor signals during accumulation movement.

    PubMed

    Tsuboi, Hidenori; Wada, Masamitsu

    2013-07-01

    Under low light conditions, chloroplasts gather at a cell surface to maximize light absorption for efficient photosynthesis, which is called the accumulation response. Phototropin1 (phot1) and phototropin2 (phot2) were identified as blue light photoreceptors in the accumulation response that occurs in Arabidopsis thaliana and Adiantum capillus-veneris with neochrome1 (neo1) as a red light photoreceptor in A. capillus-veneris. However, the signal molecule that is emitted from the photoreceptors and transmitted to the chloroplasts is not known. To investigate this topic, the accumulation response was induced by partial cell irradiation with a microbeam of red, blue and far-red light in A. capillus-veneris gametophyte cells. Chloroplasts moved towards the irradiated region and were able to sense the signal as long as its signal flowed. The signal from neo1 had a longer life than the signal that came from phototropins. When two microbeams with the same wavelength and the same fluence rate were placed 20 μm apart from each other and were applied to a dark-adapted cell, chloroplasts at an equidistant position always moved towards the center (midpoint) of the two microbeams, but not towards either one. This result indicates that chloroplasts are detecting the concentration of the signal but not the direction of signal flow. Chloroplasts repeatedly move and stop at roughly 10 s intervals during the accumulation response, suggesting that they monitor the intermittent signal waves from photoreceptors.

  1. Three spectrally distinct photoreceptors in diurnal and nocturnal Australian ants

    PubMed Central

    Ogawa, Yuri; Falkowski, Marcin; Narendra, Ajay; Zeil, Jochen; Hemmi, Jan M.

    2015-01-01

    Ants are thought to be special among Hymenopterans in having only dichromatic colour vision based on two spectrally distinct photoreceptors. Many ants are highly visual animals, however, and use vision extensively for navigation. We show here that two congeneric day- and night-active Australian ants have three spectrally distinct photoreceptor types, potentially supporting trichromatic colour vision. Electroretinogram recordings show the presence of three spectral sensitivities with peaks (λmax) at 370, 450 and 550 nm in the night-active Myrmecia vindex and peaks at 370, 470 and 510 nm in the day-active Myrmecia croslandi. Intracellular electrophysiology on individual photoreceptors confirmed that the night-active M. vindex has three spectral sensitivities with peaks (λmax) at 370, 430 and 550 nm. A large number of the intracellular recordings in the night-active M. vindex show unusually broad-band spectral sensitivities, suggesting that photoreceptors may be coupled. Spectral measurements at different temporal frequencies revealed that the ultraviolet receptors are comparatively slow. We discuss the adaptive significance and the probability of trichromacy in Myrmecia ants in the context of dim light vision and visual navigation. PMID:25994678

  2. Three spectrally distinct photoreceptors in diurnal and nocturnal Australian ants.

    PubMed

    Ogawa, Yuri; Falkowski, Marcin; Narendra, Ajay; Zeil, Jochen; Hemmi, Jan M

    2015-06-01

    Ants are thought to be special among Hymenopterans in having only dichromatic colour vision based on two spectrally distinct photoreceptors. Many ants are highly visual animals, however, and use vision extensively for navigation. We show here that two congeneric day- and night-active Australian ants have three spectrally distinct photoreceptor types, potentially supporting trichromatic colour vision. Electroretinogram recordings show the presence of three spectral sensitivities with peaks (λmax) at 370, 450 and 550 nm in the night-active Myrmecia vindex and peaks at 370, 470 and 510 nm in the day-active Myrmecia croslandi. Intracellular electrophysiology on individual photoreceptors confirmed that the night-active M. vindex has three spectral sensitivities with peaks (λmax) at 370, 430 and 550 nm. A large number of the intracellular recordings in the night-active M. vindex show unusually broad-band spectral sensitivities, suggesting that photoreceptors may be coupled. Spectral measurements at different temporal frequencies revealed that the ultraviolet receptors are comparatively slow. We discuss the adaptive significance and the probability of trichromacy in Myrmecia ants in the context of dim light vision and visual navigation.

  3. Photoreceptor twist: a solution to the false-color problem.

    PubMed Central

    Wehner, R; Bernard, G D

    1993-01-01

    In bees and many other insects the majority of photoreceptors are twisted like a corkscrew. Here we show that this structural feature of insect eyes-whose very existence was a source of dispute for several years-is necessary for reliable encoding of information about color. Light reflected from waxy plant surfaces is partially linearly polarized. Moreover, insect photoreceptor membranes are dichroic and thus sensitive to the polarized glare originating from plant surfaces. Taken together, these two phenomena create a serious false-color problem: in the bee's trichromatic color vision system, the color values of a particular part of a plant could be affected not only by the spectral but also by the polarization properties of the reflecting surface. As demonstrated by spectroscopic measurements and optical analyses, the hue of color of a given surface of a plant would change dramatically with the direction of illumination and the bee's line of sight, if the bee possessed straight and thus highly "polarization-sensitive" photoreceptors. However, this false-color problem is overcome completely in photoreceptors that are twisted by exactly the amount we have found to occur in the worker-bee's eye. PMID:11607379

  4. Three spectrally distinct photoreceptors in diurnal and nocturnal Australian ants.

    PubMed

    Ogawa, Yuri; Falkowski, Marcin; Narendra, Ajay; Zeil, Jochen; Hemmi, Jan M

    2015-06-01

    Ants are thought to be special among Hymenopterans in having only dichromatic colour vision based on two spectrally distinct photoreceptors. Many ants are highly visual animals, however, and use vision extensively for navigation. We show here that two congeneric day- and night-active Australian ants have three spectrally distinct photoreceptor types, potentially supporting trichromatic colour vision. Electroretinogram recordings show the presence of three spectral sensitivities with peaks (λmax) at 370, 450 and 550 nm in the night-active Myrmecia vindex and peaks at 370, 470 and 510 nm in the day-active Myrmecia croslandi. Intracellular electrophysiology on individual photoreceptors confirmed that the night-active M. vindex has three spectral sensitivities with peaks (λmax) at 370, 430 and 550 nm. A large number of the intracellular recordings in the night-active M. vindex show unusually broad-band spectral sensitivities, suggesting that photoreceptors may be coupled. Spectral measurements at different temporal frequencies revealed that the ultraviolet receptors are comparatively slow. We discuss the adaptive significance and the probability of trichromacy in Myrmecia ants in the context of dim light vision and visual navigation. PMID:25994678

  5. Optics of cone photoreceptors in the chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus)

    PubMed Central

    Wilby, David; Toomey, Matthew B.; Olsson, Peter; Frederiksen, Rikard; Cornwall, M. Carter; Oulton, Ruth; Kelber, Almut; Corbo, Joseph C.; Roberts, Nicholas W.

    2015-01-01

    Vision is the primary sensory modality of birds, and its importance is evident in the sophistication of their visual systems. Coloured oil droplets in the cone photoreceptors represent an adaptation in the avian retina, acting as long-pass colour filters. However, we currently lack understanding of how the optical properties and morphology of component structures (e.g. oil droplet, mitochondrial ellipsoid and outer segment) of the cone photoreceptor influence the transmission of light into the outer segment and the ultimate effect they have on receptor sensitivity. In this study, we use data from microspectrophotometry, digital holographic microscopy and electron microscopy to inform electromagnetic models of avian cone photoreceptors to quantitatively investigate the integrated optical function of the cell. We find that pigmented oil droplets primarily function as spectral filters, not light collection devices, although the mitochondrial ellipsoid improves optical coupling between the inner segment and oil droplet. In contrast, unpigmented droplets found in violet-sensitive cones double sensitivity at its peak relative to other cone types. Oil droplets and ellipsoids both narrow the angular sensitivity of single cone photoreceptors, but not as strongly as those in human cones. PMID:26423439

  6. Cubozoan genome illuminates functional diversification of opsins and photoreceptor evolution.

    PubMed

    Liegertová, Michaela; Pergner, Jiří; Kozmiková, Iryna; Fabian, Peter; Pombinho, Antonio R; Strnad, Hynek; Pačes, Jan; Vlček, Čestmír; Bartůněk, Petr; Kozmik, Zbyněk

    2015-07-08

    Animals sense light primarily by an opsin-based photopigment present in a photoreceptor cell. Cnidaria are arguably the most basal phylum containing a well-developed visual system. The evolutionary history of opsins in the animal kingdom has not yet been resolved. Here, we study the evolution of animal opsins by genome-wide analysis of the cubozoan jellyfish Tripedalia cystophora, a cnidarian possessing complex lens-containing eyes and minor photoreceptors. A large number of opsin genes with distinct tissue- and stage-specific expression were identified. Our phylogenetic analysis unequivocally classifies cubozoan opsins as a sister group to c-opsins and documents lineage-specific expansion of the opsin gene repertoire in the cubozoan genome. Functional analyses provided evidence for the use of the Gs-cAMP signaling pathway in a small set of cubozoan opsins, indicating the possibility that the majority of other cubozoan opsins signal via distinct pathways. Additionally, these tests uncovered subtle differences among individual opsins, suggesting possible fine-tuning for specific photoreceptor tasks. Based on phylogenetic, expression and biochemical analysis we propose that rapid lineage- and species-specific duplications of the intron-less opsin genes and their subsequent functional diversification promoted evolution of a large repertoire of both visual and extraocular photoreceptors in cubozoans.

  7. Multiple domains of Stardust differentially mediate localisation of the Crumbs-Stardust complex during photoreceptor development in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Bulgakova, Natalia A; Kempkens, Ozlem; Knust, Elisabeth

    2008-06-15

    Drosophila Stardust (Sdt), a member of the MAGUK family of scaffolding proteins, is a constituent of the evolutionarily conserved Crumbs-Stardust (Crb-Sdt) complex that controls epithelial cell polarity in the embryo and morphogenesis of photoreceptor cells. Although apical localisation is a hallmark of the complex in all cell types and in all organisms analysed, only little is known about how individual components are targeted to the apical membrane. We have performed a structure-function analysis of Sdt by constructing transgenic flies that express altered forms of Sdt to determine the roles of individual domains for localisation and function in photoreceptor cells. The results corroborate the observation that the organisation of the Crb-Sdt complex is differentially regulated in pupal and adult photoreceptors. In pupal photoreceptors, only the PDZ domain of Sdt - the binding site of Crb - is required for apical targeting. In adult photoreceptors, by contrast, targeting of Sdt to the stalk membrane, a distinct compartment of the apical membrane between the rhabdomere and the zonula adherens, depends on several domains, and seems to be a two-step process. The N-terminus, including the two ECR domains and a divergent N-terminal L27 domain that binds the multi-PDZ domain protein PATJ in vitro, is necessary for targeting the protein to the apical pole of the cell. The PDZ-, the SH3- and the GUK-domains are required to restrict the protein to the stalk membrane. Drosophila PATJ or Drosophila Lin-7 are stabilised whenever a Sdt variant that contains the respective binding site is present, independently of where the variant is localised. By contrast, only full-length Sdt, confined to the stalk membrane, stabilises and localises Crb, although only in reduced amounts. The amount of Crumbs recruited to the stalk membrane correlates with its length. Our results highlight the importance of the different Sdt domains and point to a more intricate regulation of the Crb

  8. Light-regulated translocation of signaling proteins in Drosophila photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Frechter, Shahar; Minke, Baruch

    2007-01-01

    Illumination of Drosophila photoreceptor cells induces multi-facet responses, which include generation of the photoreceptor potential, screening pigment migration and translocation of signaling proteins which is the focus of recent extensive research. Translocation of three signaling molecules is covered in this review: (1) Light-dependent translocation of arrestin from the cytosol to the signaling membrane, the rhabdomere, determines the lifetime of activated rhodopsin. Arrestin translocates in PIP3 and NINAC myosin III dependent manner, and specific mutations which disrupt the interaction between arrestin and PIP3 or NINAC also impair the light-dependant translocation of arrestin and the termination of the response to light. (2) Activation of Drosophila visual G protein, DGq, causes a massive and reversible, translocation of the α subunit from the signaling membrane to the cytosol, accompanied by activity-dependent architectural changes. Analysis of the translocation and the recovery kinetics of DGqα in wild-type flies and specific visual mutants indicated that DGqα is necessary but not sufficient for the architectural changes. (3) The TRP-like (TRPL) but not TRP channels translocate in a light-dependent manner between the rhabdomere and the cell body. As a physiological consequence of this light-dependent modulation of the TRP/TRPL ratio, the photoreceptors of dark-adapted flies operate at a wider dynamic range, which allows the photoreceptors enriched with TRPL to function better in darkness and dim background illumination. Altogether, signal-dependent movement of signaling proteins plays a major role in the maintenance and function of photoreceptor cells. PMID:16458490

  9. Measurement of the photoreceptor pointing in the living chick eye.

    PubMed

    Walker, Maria K; Blanco, Leonardo; Kivlin, Rebecca; Choi, Stacey S; Doble, Nathan

    2015-04-01

    The chick eye is used in the study of ocular growth and emmetropization; however optical aberrations in the lens and cornea limit the ability to visualize fine retinal structure in living eyes. These aberrations can be corrected using adaptive optics (AO) allowing for cellular level imaging in vivo. Here, this capability is extended to measure the angular tuning properties of individual photoreceptors. The left eyes from two White Leghorn chicks (Gallus gallus domesticus) labeled chick A and chick B, were imaged using an AO flood illuminated fundus camera. By translating the entrance pupil position, the same retinal location was illuminated with light of varying angles allowing for the measurement of individual photoreceptor pointing. At 30° nasal from the pecten tip, the pointing direction for both chicks was towards the pupil center with a narrow distribution. These particular chicks were found to have a temporal (T) and inferior (I) bias in the alignment with peak positions of (0.81 T, 0.23 I) and (0.57 T, 0.18 I) mm from the pupil center for chicks A and B respectively. The rho, ρ, values for the major, ρL, and minor, ρs, axes were 0.14 and 0.17mm(-2) for chick A and 0.09 and 0.20mm(-2) for chick B. The small disarray in the alignment of the chick photoreceptors implies that the photoreceptors are aligned to optimize the light entering the eye through the central portion of the pupil aperture. The ability to measure pointing properties of individual photoreceptors will have application in the study of eye growth and various retinal disorders.

  10. Stochastic, Adaptive Sampling of Information by Microvilli in Fly Photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Song, Zhuoyi; Postma, Marten; Billings, Stephen A.; Coca, Daniel; Hardie, Roger C.; Juusola, Mikko

    2012-01-01

    Summary Background In fly photoreceptors, light is focused onto a photosensitive waveguide, the rhabdomere, consisting of tens of thousands of microvilli. Each microvillus is capable of generating elementary responses, quantum bumps, in response to single photons using a stochastically operating phototransduction cascade. Whereas much is known about the cascade reactions, less is known about how the concerted action of the microvilli population encodes light changes into neural information and how the ultrastructure and biochemical machinery of photoreceptors of flies and other insects evolved in relation to the information sampling and processing they perform. Results We generated biophysically realistic fly photoreceptor models, which accurately simulate the encoding of visual information. By comparing stochastic simulations with single cell recordings from Drosophila photoreceptors, we show how adaptive sampling by 30,000 microvilli captures the temporal structure of natural contrast changes. Following each bump, individual microvilli are rendered briefly (∼100–200 ms) refractory, thereby reducing quantum efficiency with increasing intensity. The refractory period opposes saturation, dynamically and stochastically adjusting availability of microvilli (bump production rate: sample rate), whereas intracellular calcium and voltage adapt bump amplitude and waveform (sample size). These adapting sampling principles result in robust encoding of natural light changes, which both approximates perceptual contrast constancy and enhances novel events under different light conditions, and predict information processing across a range of species with different visual ecologies. Conclusions These results clarify why fly photoreceptors are structured the way they are and function as they do, linking sensory information to sensory evolution and revealing benefits of stochasticity for neural information processing. PMID:22704990

  11. 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.

  12. Sucker rod pump

    SciTech Connect

    Brewer, J.R.

    1992-04-14

    This patent describes a subsurface well pump, it comprises: a working barrel; a plunger which reciprocates along the vertical axis within the working barrel between an upper and lower position; a rod connected to the plunger and extending to a means for providing reciprocating force; a well string extending from the top of the working barrel to the surface; an outlet check valve which permits flow to exit the working barrel into the well string and does not permit flow to exit the well string into the working barrel; and an inlet check valve which permits flow into the working barrel from outside of the subsurface pump, the inlet check valve being above the top position of the plunger, the inlet check valve having a cross sectional flow area about equal to or greater than the horizontal cross sectional area of the working barrel, and the inlet check valve being a hinged flapper valve.

  13. Human gene therapy for RPE65 isomerase deficiency activates the retinoid cycle of vision but with slow rod kinetics.

    PubMed

    Cideciyan, Artur V; Aleman, Tomas S; Boye, Sanford L; Schwartz, Sharon B; Kaushal, Shalesh; Roman, Alejandro J; Pang, Ji-Jing; Sumaroka, Alexander; Windsor, Elizabeth A M; Wilson, James M; Flotte, Terence R; Fishman, Gerald A; Heon, Elise; Stone, Edwin M; Byrne, Barry J; Jacobson, Samuel G; Hauswirth, William W

    2008-09-30

    The RPE65 gene encodes the isomerase of the retinoid cycle, the enzymatic pathway that underlies mammalian vision. Mutations in RPE65 disrupt the retinoid cycle and cause a congenital human blindness known as Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA). We used adeno-associated virus-2-based RPE65 gene replacement therapy to treat three young adults with RPE65-LCA and measured their vision before and up to 90 days after the intervention. All three patients showed a statistically significant increase in visual sensitivity at 30 days after treatment localized to retinal areas that had received the vector. There were no changes in the effect between 30 and 90 days. Both cone- and rod-photoreceptor-based vision could be demonstrated in treated areas. For cones, there were increases of up to 1.7 log units (i.e., 50 fold); and for rods, there were gains of up to 4.8 log units (i.e., 63,000 fold). To assess what fraction of full vision potential was restored by gene therapy, we related the degree of light sensitivity to the level of remaining photoreceptors within the treatment area. We found that the intervention could overcome nearly all of the loss of light sensitivity resulting from the biochemical blockade. However, this reconstituted retinoid cycle was not completely normal. Resensitization kinetics of the newly treated rods were remarkably slow and required 8 h or more for the attainment of full sensitivity, compared with <1 h in normal eyes. Cone-sensitivity recovery time was rapid. These results demonstrate dramatic, albeit imperfect, recovery of rod- and cone-photoreceptor-based vision after RPE65 gene therapy.

  14. 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

  15. Photoreceptor Cells Influence Retinal Vascular Degeneration in Mouse Models of Retinal Degeneration and Diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Haitao; Tang, Jie; Du, Yunpeng; Saadane, Aicha; Tonade, Deoye; Samuels, Ivy; Veenstra, Alex; Palczewski, Krzysztof; Kern, Timothy S.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Loss of photoreceptor cells is associated with retinal vascular degeneration in retinitis pigmentosa, whereas the presence of photoreceptor cells is implicated in vascular degeneration in diabetic retinopathy. To investigate how both the absence and presence of photoreceptors could damage the retinal vasculature, we compared two mouse models of photoreceptor degeneration (opsin−/− and RhoP23H/P23H ) and control C57Bl/5J mice, each with and without diabetes. Methods Retinal thickness, superoxide, expression of inflammatory proteins, ERG and optokinetic responses, leukocyte cytotoxicity, and capillary degeneration were evaluated at 1 to 10 months of age using published methods. Results Retinal photoreceptor cells degenerated completely in the opsin mutants by 2 to 4 months of age, and visual function subsided correspondingly. Retinal capillary degeneration was substantial while photoreceptors were still present, but slowed after the photoreceptors degenerated. Diabetes did not further exacerbate capillary degeneration in these models of photoreceptor degeneration, but did cause capillary degeneration in wild-type animals. Photoreceptor cells, however, did not degenerate in wild-type diabetic mice, presumably because the stress responses in these cells were less than in the opsin mutants. Retinal superoxide and leukocyte damage to retinal endothelium contributed to the degeneration of retinal capillaries in diabetes, and leukocyte-mediated damage was increased in both opsin mutants during photoreceptor cell degeneration. Conclusions Photoreceptor cells affect the integrity of the retinal microvasculature. Deterioration of retinal capillaries in opsin mutants was appreciable while photoreceptor cells were present and stressed, but was less after photoreceptors degenerated. This finding proves relevant to diabetes, where persistent stress in photoreceptors likewise contributes to capillary degeneration. PMID:27548901

  16. Biophysical properties of photoreceptors in Corixa punctata facilitate diurnal life-style.

    PubMed

    Frolov, Roman V

    2015-06-01

    Measurement of evolutionary adaptations of a visual system to its visual and operational ecology requires comparison of visual function in different species with similar morphologies and visual ecologies, occupying the same habitats but displaying differences in visually-guided behavior. The goal here was to document the biophysical properties of photoreceptors in the lesser water boatman Corixa punctata, which shares many features with the previously studied aquatic predator water boatman backswimmer Notonecta glauca. However, unlike the backswimmer, which heavily relies on vision to catch its prey, Corixa is a detritivore. Using the patch-clamp method, I found that the average whole-cell capacitance of Corixa photoreceptors was 441±206 pF, higher than in any other insect studied so far, and that absolute sensitivity was positively correlated with capacitance (Spearman rank correlation coefficient, 0.73). Interestingly, both the sensitivity distribution median and variation in Corixa were similar to the corresponding values in the diurnal water strider Gerris lacustris and were substantially smaller than in the noctidial N. glauca or the nocturnal/crepuscular cockroach Periplaneta americana. Furthermore, capacitance was correlated with the amplitudes of light-induced (0.70) and delayed rectifier K(+) (0.46) currents, membrane corner frequency (0.68) and maximal information rate (IRmax, 0.74). No correlation was observed between capacitance and transient K(+) current. Average IRmax in Corixa was 36.0±21.3 bits s(-1), much higher than in G. lacustris but smaller than in N. glauca. These findings support the hypothesis that Corixa's retinal function is adapted to its diurnal life-style, which is also consistent with field observations.

  17. Retinal phosphenes and discrete dark noises in rods: a new biophysical framework.

    PubMed

    Bókkon, István; Vimal, Ram Lakhan Pandey

    2009-09-01

    Spontaneous rhodopsin activation produces discrete noises indistinguishable from single-photon responses. However, there is a serious discrepancy between the apparent energy barrier of thermal events compared with that of the photon-driven process. Current estimates of the activation energies of discrete dark noises in vertebrate rod and cone pigments are approximately 40-50 cal/mol for activation by photon and approximately 20-25 kcal/mol for activation by heat. To reconcile this discrepancy, it was assumed that thermal activation and photon activation of rhodopsin follow different molecular mechanisms. The most convincing hypothesis for a separate low-energy thermal pathway is that the discrete dark noises of rods arise in a small subpopulation of rhodopsins, where the Schiff base linking the chromophore to the protein part has been deprotonated. According to Narici et al.' experiments (2009, Radiation Measurements), phosphene perception in space travel is due to the ionizing radiation-induced free radicals that generate chemiluminescent photons from lipid peroxidation. These photons are absorbed by the photoreceptors chromophores, which modify the rhodopsin molecules (bleaching) and start the photo-transduction cascade resulting in the perception of phosphenes. Here, we point out that not only retinal phosphenes but also the discrete dark noise of rods can be due to the natural redox related (free radical) bioluminescent photons in the retina. In other words, under regulated conditions, lipid peroxidation is a natural process in cells and also in retinal membranes. Since the natural lipid peroxidation is one of the main sources of bioluminescent photons and the photoreceptors have the highest oxygen demand and polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) concentration, there is a continuous, low level bioluminescent photon emission in the retina without any external photonic stimulation. During photopic or scotopic vision, evanescent bioluminescent photon emission is

  18. Colored lenses suppress blue light-emitting diode light-induced damage in photoreceptor-derived cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiromoto, Kaho; Kuse, Yoshiki; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Tadokoro, Nobuyuki; Kaneko, Nobuyuki; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Hara, Hideaki

    2016-03-01

    Blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs) in liquid crystal displays emit high levels of blue light, exposure to which is harmful to the retina. Here, we investigated the protective effects of colored lenses in blue LED light-induced damage to 661W photoreceptor-derived cells. We used eight kinds of colored lenses and one lens that reflects blue light. Moreover, we evaluated the relationship between the protective effects of the lens and the transmittance of lens at 464 nm. Lenses of six colors, except for the SY, PN, and reflective coating lenses, strongly decreased the reduction in cell damage induced by blue LED light exposure. The deep yellow lens showed the most protective effect from all the lenses, but the reflective coating lens and pink lens did not show any effects on photoreceptor-derived cell damage. Moreover, these results were correlated with the lens transmittance of blue LED light (464 nm). These results suggest that lenses of various colors, especially deep yellow lenses, may protect retinal photoreceptor cells from blue LED light in proportion to the transmittance for the wavelength of blue LED and the suppression of reactive oxygen species production and cell damage.

  19. Colored lenses suppress blue light-emitting diode light-induced damage in photoreceptor-derived cells.

    PubMed

    Hiromoto, Kaho; Kuse, Yoshiki; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Tadokoro, Nobuyuki; Kaneko, Nobuyuki; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Hara, Hideaki

    2016-03-01

    Blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs) in liquid crystal displays emit high levels of blue light, exposure to which is harmful to the retina. Here, we investigated the protective effects of colored lenses in blue LED light-induced damage to 661W photoreceptor-derived cells. We used eight kinds of colored lenses and one lens that reflects blue light. Moreover, we evaluated the relationship between the protective effects of the lens and the transmittance of lens at 464 nm. Lenses of six colors, except for the SY, PN, and reflective coating lenses, strongly decreased the reduction in cell damage induced by blue LED light exposure. The deep yellow lens showed the most protective effect from all the lenses, but the reflective coating lens and pink lens did not show any effects on photoreceptor-derived cell damage. Moreover, these results were correlated with the lens transmittance of blue LED light (464 nm). These results suggest that lenses of various colors, especially deep yellow lenses, may protect retinal photoreceptor cells from blue LED light in proportion to the transmittance for the wavelength of blue LED and the suppression of reactive oxygen species production and cell damage.

  20. Phloroglucinol protects retinal pigment epithelium and photoreceptor against all-trans-retinal-induced toxicity and inhibits A2E formation.

    PubMed

    Cia, David; Cubizolle, Aurélie; Crauste, Céline; Jacquemot, Nathalie; Guillou, Laurent; Vigor, Claire; Angebault, Claire; Hamel, Christian P; Vercauteren, Joseph; Brabet, Philippe

    2016-09-01

    Among retinal macular diseases, the juvenile recessive Stargardt disease and the age-related degenerative disease arise from carbonyl and oxidative stresses (COS). Both stresses originate from an accumulation of all-trans-retinal (atRAL) and are involved in bisretinoid formation by condensation of atRAL with phosphatidylethanolamine (carbonyl stress) in the photoreceptor and its transformation into lipofuscin bisretinoids (oxidative stress) in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). As atRAL and bisretinoid accumulation contribute to RPE and photoreceptor cell death, our goal is to select powerful chemical inhibitors of COS. Here, we describe that phloroglucinol, a natural phenolic compound having anti-COS properties, protects both rat RPE and mouse photoreceptor primary cultures from atRAL-induced cell death and reduces hydrogen peroxide (H2 O2 )-induced damage in RPE in a dose-dependent manner. Mechanistic analyses demonstrate that the protective effect encompasses decrease in atRAL-induced intracellular reactive oxygen species and free atRAL levels. Moreover, we show that phloroglucinol reacts with atRAL to form a chromene adduct which prevents bisretinoid A2E synthesis in vitro. Taken together, these data show that the protective effect of phloroglucinol correlates with its ability to trap atRAL and to prevent its further transformation into deleterious bisretinoids. Phloroglucinol might be a good basis to develop efficient therapeutic derivatives in the treatment of retinal macular diseases.

  1. Phloroglucinol protects retinal pigment epithelium and photoreceptor against all-trans-retinal-induced toxicity and inhibits A2E formation.

    PubMed

    Cia, David; Cubizolle, Aurélie; Crauste, Céline; Jacquemot, Nathalie; Guillou, Laurent; Vigor, Claire; Angebault, Claire; Hamel, Christian P; Vercauteren, Joseph; Brabet, Philippe

    2016-09-01

    Among retinal macular diseases, the juvenile recessive Stargardt disease and the age-related degenerative disease arise from carbonyl and oxidative stresses (COS). Both stresses originate from an accumulation of all-trans-retinal (atRAL) and are involved in bisretinoid formation by condensation of atRAL with phosphatidylethanolamine (carbonyl stress) in the photoreceptor and its transformation into lipofuscin bisretinoids (oxidative stress) in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). As atRAL and bisretinoid accumulation contribute to RPE and photoreceptor cell death, our goal is to select powerful chemical inhibitors of COS. Here, we describe that phloroglucinol, a natural phenolic compound having anti-COS properties, protects both rat RPE and mouse photoreceptor primary cultures from atRAL-induced cell death and reduces hydrogen peroxide (H2 O2 )-induced damage in RPE in a dose-dependent manner. Mechanistic analyses demonstrate that the protective effect encompasses decrease in atRAL-induced intracellular reactive oxygen species and free atRAL levels. Moreover, we show that phloroglucinol reacts with atRAL to form a chromene adduct which prevents bisretinoid A2E synthesis in vitro. Taken together, these data show that the protective effect of phloroglucinol correlates with its ability to trap atRAL and to prevent its further transformation into deleterious bisretinoids. Phloroglucinol might be a good basis to develop efficient therapeutic derivatives in the treatment of retinal macular diseases. PMID:27072643

  2. Detection and resolution of visual stimuli by turtle photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Baylor, D. A.; Hodgkin, A. L.

    1973-01-01

    1. Hyperpolarizing responses up to 30 mV in amplitude were recorded from cones and from certain cells believed to be rods in the isolated retina of the swamp turtle, Pseudemys scripta elegans. 2. The responses evoked by weak flashes of light reach their maximum in 100-140 msec in red-sensitive cones, 140-180 msec in green-sensitive cones, and 300-600 msec in the rod-like cells (20° C). 3. The cone response evoked by weak flashes of light is linearly related to light intensity and obeys the superposition principle in that the response to a very weak step of light is the integral of the response to a very weak flash. 4. On the basis of their spectral sensitivities cones can be divided into three distinct classes, namely red-sensitive cones whose relative quantum sensitivity is maximal at 630 nm, green-sensitive cones with a maximal sensitivity at 550 nm and blue-sensitive cones with a maximum at 460 nm. 5. The difference between the spectral sensitivity of rods with a maximum at about 520 nm and green-sensitive cones (λmax = 550 nm) is consistent with the view that both receptors contain a 5182 retinal pigment as reported by Liebman & Granda, but that light is filtered by an orange oil droplet in green-sensitive cones. 6. The spectral sensitivities of both red- and green-sensitive cones agree well amongst themselves at long wave-lengths but differ markedly in the extent of the reduction at short wave-lengths. This variation is attributed to differences in the extent to which light is filtered through the coloured oil droplets. 7. There is a significant positive correlation between the absolute sensitivity of red- and green-sensitive cones and the reduction in sensitivity at short wave-lengths. This would be explained if a greater fraction of the light passes through the oil droplet in the most sensitive cells. 8. The absolute flash sensitivities of the most sensitive receptors were about 250 μV photon-1 μm2 in red- and green-sensitive cones, 120 μV photon-1 μm2

  3. 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

  4. Eulerian formulation of elastic rods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huynen, Alexandre; Detournay, Emmanuel; Denoël, Vincent

    2016-06-01

    In numerous biological, medical and engineering applications, elastic rods are constrained to deform inside or around tube-like surfaces. To solve efficiently this class of problems, the equations governing the deflection of elastic rods are reformulated within the Eulerian framework of this generic tubular constraint defined as a perfectly stiff normal ringed surface. This reformulation hinges on describing the rod-deformed configuration by means of its relative position with respect to a reference curve, defined as the axis or spine curve of the constraint, and on restating the rod local equilibrium in terms of the curvilinear coordinate parametrizing this curve. Associated with a segmentation strategy, which partitions the global problem into a sequence of rod segments either in continuous contact with the constraint or free of contact (except for their extremities), this re-parametrization not only trivializes the detection of new contacts but also transforms these free boundary problems into classic two-points boundary-value problems and suppresses the isoperimetric constraints resulting from the imposition of the rod position at the extremities of each rod segment.

  5. Retinal transplantation of photoreceptors results in donor–host cytoplasmic exchange

    PubMed Central

    Santos-Ferreira, Tiago; Llonch, Sílvia; Borsch, Oliver; Postel, Kai; Haas, Jochen; Ader, Marius

    2016-01-01

    Pre-clinical studies provided evidence for successful photoreceptor cell replacement therapy. Migration and integration of donor photoreceptors into the retina has been proposed as the underlying mechanism for restored visual function. Here we reveal that donor photoreceptors do not structurally integrate into the retinal tissue but instead reside between the photoreceptor layer and the retinal pigment epithelium, the so-called sub-retinal space, and exchange intracellular material with host photoreceptors. By combining single-cell analysis, Cre/lox technology and independent labelling of the cytoplasm and nucleus, we reliably track allogeneic transplants demonstrating cellular content transfer between graft and host photoreceptors without nuclear translocation. Our results contradict the common view that transplanted photoreceptors migrate and integrate into the photoreceptor layer of recipients and therefore imply a re-interpretation of previous photoreceptor transplantation studies. Furthermore, the observed interaction of donor with host photoreceptors may represent an unexpected mechanism for the treatment of blinding diseases in future cell therapy approaches. PMID:27701381

  6. Binding of Ca2+ to Glutamic Acid-Rich Polypeptides from the Rod Outer Segment

    PubMed Central

    Haber-Pohlmeier, S.; Abarca-Heidemann, K.; Körschen, H. G.; Dhiman, H. Kaur; Heberle, J.; Schwalbe, H.; Klein-Seetharaman, J.; Kaupp, U. B.; Pohlmeier, A.

    2007-01-01

    Rod photoreceptors contain three different glutamic acid-rich proteins (GARPs) that have been proposed to control the propagation of Ca2+ from the site of its entry at the cyclic nucleotide-gated channel to the cytosol of the outer segment. We tested this hypothesis by measuring the binding of Ca2+ to the following five constructs related to GARPs of rod photoreceptors: a 32-mer peptide containing 22 carboxylate groups, polyglutamic acid, a recombinant segment comprising 73 carboxylate groups (GLU), GARP1, and GARP2. Ca2+ binding was investigated by means of a Ca2+-sensitive electrode. In all cases, Ca2+ binds with low affinity; the half-maximum binding constant K1/2 ranges from 6 to 16 mM. The binding stoichiometry between Ca2+ ions and carboxylic groups is ∼1:1; an exception is GARP2, where a binding stoichiometry of ∼1:2 was found. Hydrodynamic radii of 1.6, 2.8, 3.3, 5.7, and 6.7 nm were determined by dynamic light scattering for the 32-mer, polyglutamic acid, GLU, GARP2, and GARP1 constructs, respectively. These results suggest that the peptides as well as GARP1 and GARP2 do not adopt compact globular structures. We conclude that the structures should be regarded as loose coils with low-affinity, high-capacity Ca2+ binding. PMID:17218469

  7. Rod coupling for oil well sucker rods and the like

    SciTech Connect

    Bowers, R.

    1986-07-29

    A coupling is described for joining solid reciprocating sucker rods to form a rod string in a well pump or the like comprising a unitary metal sleeve having an axial threaded bore and an irregular outer surface, and a homogeneous and non-fibrous coating on the sleeve over the outer surface providing an externally substantially cylindrical coupling, the coating comprising a flexible and abrasive resistant thermoplastic hydrourethane polymer formed on the irregular outer surface of the sleeve while in the molten state.

  8. Light Induces Ultrastructural Changes in Rod Outer and Inner Segments, Including Autophagy, in a Transgenic Xenopus laevis P23H Rhodopsin Model of Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Bogéa, Tami H.; Wen, Runxia H.; Moritz, Orson L.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose We previously reported a transgenic Xenopus laevis model of retinitis pigmentosa in which tadpoles express the bovine form of P23H rhodopsin (bP23H) in rod photoreceptors. In this model, retinal degeneration was dependent on light exposure. Here, we investigated ultrastructural changes that occurred in the rod photoreceptors of these retinas when exposed to light. Methods Tadpoles expressing bP23H in rods were transferred from constant darkness to a 12-hour light:12-hour dark (12L:12D) regimen. For comparison, transgenic tadpoles expressing an inducible form of caspase 9 (iCasp9) were reared in a 12L:12D regimen, and retinal degeneration was induced by administration of the drug AP20187. Tadpoles were euthanized at various time points, and eyes were processed for confocal light and transmission electron microscopy. Results We observed defects in outer and inner segments of rods expressing bP23H that were aggravated by light exposure. Rod outer segments exhibited vesiculations throughout and were rapidly phagocytosed by the retinal pigment epithelium. In rod inner segments, we observed autophagic compartments adjacent to the endoplasmic reticulum and extensive vesiculation at later time points. These defects were not found in rods expressing iCasp9, which completely degenerated within 36 hours after drug administration. Conclusions Our results indicate that ultrastructural defects in outer and inner segment membranes of bP23H expressing rods differ from those observed in drug-induced apoptosis. We suggest that light-induced retinal degeneration caused by P23H rhodopsin occurs via cell death with autophagy, which may represent an attempt to eliminate the mutant rhodopsin and/or damaged cellular compartments from the secretory pathway. PMID:26720441

  9. An ADAM9 mutation in canine cone-rod dystrophy 3 establishes homology with human cone-rod dystrophy 9

    PubMed Central

    Goldstein, Orly; Mezey, Jason G.; Boyko, Adam R.; Gao, Chuan; Wang, Wei; Bustamante, Carlos D.; Anguish, Lynne J.; Jordan, Julie Ann; Pearce-Kelling, Susan E.; Aguirre, Gustavo D.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose To identify the causative mutation in a canine cone-rod dystrophy (crd3) that segregates as an adult onset disorder in the Glen of Imaal Terrier breed of dog. Methods Glen of Imaal Terriers were ascertained for crd3 phenotype by clinical ophthalmoscopic examination, and in selected cases by electroretinography. Blood samples from affected cases and non-affected controls were collected and used, after DNA extraction, to undertake a genome-wide association study using Affymetrix Version 2 Canine single nucleotide polymorphism chips and 250K Sty Assay protocol. Positional candidate gene analysis was undertaken for genes identified within the peak-association signal region. Retinal morphology of selected crd3-affected dogs was evaluated by light and electron microscopy. Results A peak association signal exceeding genome-wide significance was identified on canine chromosome 16. Evaluation of genes in this region suggested A Disintegrin And Metalloprotease domain, family member 9 (ADAM9), identified concurrently elsewhere as the cause of human cone-rod dystrophy 9 (CORD9), as a strong positional candidate for canine crd3. Sequence analysis identified a large genomic deletion (over 20 kb) that removed exons 15 and 16 from the ADAM9 transcript, introduced a premature stop, and would remove critical domains from the encoded protein. Light and electron microscopy established that, as in ADAM9 knockout mice, the primary lesion in crd3 appears to be a failure of the apical microvilli of the retinal pigment epithelium to appropriately invest photoreceptor outer segments. By electroretinography, retinal function appears normal in very young crd3-affected dogs, but by 15 months of age, cone dysfunction is present. Subsequently, both rod and cone function degenerate. Conclusions Identification of this ADAM9 deletion in crd3-affected dogs establishes this canine disease as orthologous to CORD9 in humans, and offers opportunities for further characterization of the disease

  10. Renewal of opsin in the photoreceptor cells of the mosquito

    PubMed Central

    1979-01-01

    Mosquito rhodopsin is a digitonin-soluble membrane protein of molecular weight 39,000 daltons, as determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate gel electrophoresis. The rhodopsin undergoes a spectral transition from R515-520 to M480 after orange illumination. The visual pigment apoprotein, opsin, is the major membrane protein in the eye. Protein synthesis in the photoreceptor cells occurs in the perinuclear cytoplasm and the newly made protein is transported to the rhabdom. Light adaptation increases the rate of turnover of this rhabdomal protein. The turnover of electrophoretically isolated opsin is also stimulated by light adaptation. The changes observed in protein metabolism biochemically, are consistent with previous morphological observations of photoreceptor membrane turnover. The results agree with the hypothesis that the newly synthesized rhabdomal protein is opsin. PMID:512631

  11. Photoreceptor-mediated bending towards UV-B in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Vandenbussche, Filip; Tilbrook, Kimberley; Fierro, Ana Carolina; Marchal, Kathleen; Poelman, Dirk; Van Der Straeten, Dominique; Ulm, Roman

    2014-06-01

    Plants reorient their growth towards light to optimize photosynthetic light capture--a process known as phototropism. Phototropins are the photoreceptors essential for phototropic growth towards blue and ultraviolet-A (UV-A) light. Here we detail a phototropic response towards UV-B in etiolated Arabidopsis seedlings. We report that early differential growth is mediated by phototropins but clear phototropic bending to UV-B is maintained in phot1 phot2 double mutants. We further show that this phototropin-independent phototropic response to UV-B requires the UV-B photoreceptor UVR8. Broad UV-B-mediated repression of auxin-responsive genes suggests that UVR8 regulates directional bending by affecting auxin signaling. Kinetic analysis shows that UVR8-dependent directional bending occurs later than the phototropin response. We conclude that plants may use the full short-wavelength spectrum of sunlight to efficiently reorient photosynthetic tissue with incoming light.

  12. Necrotic enlargement of cone photoreceptor cells and the release of high-mobility group box-1 in retinitis pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Murakami, Y; Ikeda, Y; Nakatake, S; Tachibana, T; Fujiwara, K; Yoshida, N; Notomi, S; Nakao, S; Hisatomi, T; Miller, J W; Vavvas, DG; Sonoda, KH; Ishibashi, T

    2015-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) refers to a group of inherited retinal degenerations resulting form rod and cone photoreceptor cell death. The rod cell death due to deleterious genetic mutations has been shown to occur mainly through apoptosis, whereas the mechanisms and features of the secondary cone cell death have not been fully elucidated. Our previous study showed that the cone cell death in rd10 mice, an animal model of RP, involves necrotic features and is partly mediated by the receptor interacting protein kinase. However, the relevancy of necrotic cone cell death in human RP patients remains unknown. In the present study, we showed that dying cone cells in rd10 mice exhibited cellular enlargement, along with necrotic changes such as cellular swelling and mitochondrial rupture. In human eyes, live imaging of cone cells by adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscopy revealed significantly increased percentages of enlarged cone cells in the RP patients compared with the control subjects. The vitreous of the RP patients contained significantly higher levels of high-mobility group box-1, which is released extracellularly associated with necrotic cell death. These findings suggest that necrotic enlargement of cone cells is involved in the process of cone degeneration, and that necrosis may be a novel target to prevent or delay the loss of cone-mediated central vision in RP. PMID:27551484

  13. Flash photolysis of caged compounds in Limulus ventral photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    Rapid concentration jumps of Ins(1,4,5)P3 or ATP were made inside Limulus ventral photoreceptors by flash photolysis of the parent caged compounds. In intact ventral photoreceptors, the photolysis flash evokes a maximum amplitude light-activated current; therefore, a procedure was developed for uncoupling phototransduction by blocking two of the initial reactions in the cascade, rhodopsin excitation and G protein activation. Rhodopsin was inactivated by exposure to hydroxylamine and bright light. This procedure abolished the early receptor potential and reduced the quantum efficiency by 325 +/- 90- fold (mean +/- SD). G protein activation was blocked by injection of guanosine-5'-O-(2-thiodiphosphate) (GDP beta S). GDP beta S injection reduced the quantum efficiency by 1,881 +/- 1,153-fold (mean +/- SD). Together hydroxylamine exposure and GDP beta S injection reduced the quantum efficiency by 870,000 +/- 650,000-fold (mean +/- SD). After the combined treatment, photoreceptors produced quantum bumps to light that was approximately 10(6) times brighter than the intensity that produced quantum bumps before treatment. Experiments were performed with caged compounds injected into photoreceptors in which phototransduction was largely uncoupled. Photolysis of one compound, myo-inositol 1,4,5- triphosphate P4(5)-1-(2-nitrophenyl)ethyl ester (caged IP3), increased the voltage clamp current in response to the flashlamp by more than twofold without changing the latency of the response. The effect was not seen with photolysis of either adenosine-5'-triphosphate P3-1-(2- nitrophenyl)ethyl ester (caged ATP) or caged IP3 in cells preloaded with either heparin or (1,2-bis-(o-amino-phenoxy)ethane-N-N-N'-N' tetraacetic acid tetrapotassium salt (BAPTA). The results suggest that photoreleased IP3 releases calcium ions from intracellular stores and the resulting increase in [Ca2+]i enhances the amplification of the phototransduction cascade. PMID:1431805

  14. Rod coupling with mounted guide

    SciTech Connect

    Bair, M.L.

    1987-05-26

    This patent describes a well sucker rod string, in a well bore, the combination comprising: an axially elongated coupling section having threads at axially opposite ends thereof for coupling to and between successive sucker rods in the rod string, to transmit string loading. The section has first and second exposed surfaces adjacent an end of the section, and a third surface located between the first and second exposed surfaces; a rod guide consisting of molded plastic material extending about and bonded to the section third surface to project outwardly therefrom for engagement with the well bore during up and down stroking of the string; and one annular groove sunk in the section between the first and third surfaces, and another annular groove sunk in the section between the second and third surfaces. The depth of the one groove is less than about 15% of the radius of the section at the first surface.

  15. Photoreceptor current and photoorientation in chlamydomonas mediated by 9-demethylchlamyrhodopsin.

    PubMed Central

    Govorunova, E G; Sineshchekov, O A; Gärtner, W; Chunaev, A S; Hegemann, P

    2001-01-01

    Green flagellates possess rhodopsin-like photoreceptors involved in control of their behavior via generation of photocurrents across the plasma membrane. Chlamydomonas mutants blocked in retinal biosynthesis are "blind," but they can be rescued by the addition of exogenous retinoids. Photosignaling by chlamyrhodopsin regenerated with 9-demethylretinal was investigated by recording photocurrents from single cells and cell suspensions, and by measuring phototactic orientation. The addition of a saturating concentration of this analog led to reconstitution of all receptor molecules. However, sensitivity of the photoreceptor current in cells reconstituted with the analog was smaller compared with retinal-reconstituted cells, indicating a decreased signaling efficiency of the analog receptor protein. Suppression of the photoreceptor current in double-flash experiments was smaller and its recovery faster with 9-demethylretinal than with retinal, as it would be expected from a decreased PC amplitude in the analog-reconstituted cells. Cells reconstituted with either retinal or the analog displayed negative phototaxis at low light and switched to positive one upon an increase in stimulus intensity, as opposed to the wild type. The reversal of the phototaxis direction in analog-reconstituted cells was shifted to a higher fluence rate compared with cells reconstituted with retinal, which corresponded to the decreased signaling efficiency of 9-demethylchlamyrhodopsin. PMID:11606300

  16. 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

  17. Effect of Purified Murine NGF on Isolated Photoreceptors of a Rodent Developing Retinitis Pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Rocco, Maria Luisa; Balzamino, Bijorn Omar; Petrocchi Passeri, Pamela; Micera, Alessandra; Aloe, Luigi

    2015-01-01

    A number of different studies have shown that neurotrophins, including nerve growth factor (NGF) support the survival of retinal ganglion neurons during a variety if insults. Recently, we have reported that that eye NGF administration can protect also photoreceptor degeneration in a mice and rat with inherited retinitis pigmentosa. However, the evidence that NGF acts directly on photoreceptors and that other retinal cells mediate the NGF effect could not be excluded. In the present study we have isolated retinal cells from rats with inherited retinitis pigmentosa (RP) during the post-natal stage of photoreceptor degenerative. In presence of NGF, these cells are characterized by enhanced expression of NGF-receptors and rhodopsin, the specific marker of photoreceptor and better cell survival, as well as neuritis outgrowth. Together these observations support the hypothesis that NGF that NGF acts directly on photoreceptors survival and prevents photoreceptor degeneration as previously suggested by in vivo studies. PMID:25897972

  18. The presynaptic active zone protein bassoon is essential for photoreceptor ribbon synapse formation in the retina.

    PubMed

    Dick, Oliver; tom Dieck, Susanne; Altrock, Wilko Detlef; Ammermüller, Josef; Weiler, Reto; Garner, Craig Curtis; Gundelfinger, Eckart Dieter; Brandstätter, Johann Helmut

    2003-03-01

    The photoreceptor ribbon synapse is a highly specialized glutamatergic synapse designed for the continuous flow of synaptic vesicles to the neurotransmitter release site. The molecular mechanisms underlying ribbon synapse formation are poorly understood. We have investigated the role of the presynaptic cytomatrix protein Bassoon, a major component of the photoreceptor ribbon, in a mouse retina deficient of functional Bassoon protein. Photoreceptor ribbons lacking Bassoon are not anchored to the presynaptic active zones. This results in an impaired photoreceptor synaptic transmission, an abnormal dendritic branching of neurons postsynaptic to photoreceptors, and the formation of ectopic synapses. These findings suggest a critical role of Bassoon in the formation and the function of photoreceptor ribbon synapses of the mammalian retina.

  19. 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)

  20. [Regeneration of photoreceptor organs in freshwater planarians at different levels of accumulation of natural methylmercury compounds].

    PubMed

    Medvedev, I V; Gremiachikh, V A; Zheltov, S V; Bogdanenko, O V; Aksenova, I A

    2006-01-01

    The effects of natural methylmercury compounds on regeneration of photoreceptor organs were studied in three freshwater planarians: Polycelis tenuis, Dugesia lugubris, and D. tigrina. Accumulation of methyl mercury in the planarian body suppressed regeneration of P. tenuis with numerous photoreceptor organs to a greater extent than in two other planarians that have only two eyes. High methyl mercury concentrations inhibited the restoration of photoreceptor organs in asexual and sexual D. tigrina races.

  1. Photoreceptor-based magnetoreception: optimal design of receptor molecules, cells, and neuronal processing

    PubMed Central

    Ritz, Thorsten; Ahmad, Margaret; Mouritsen, Henrik; Wiltschko, Roswitha; Wiltschko, Wolfgang

    2010-01-01

    The sensory basis of magnetoreception in animals still remains a mystery. One hypothesis of magnetoreception is that photochemical radical pair reactions can transduce magnetic information in specialized photoreceptor cells, possibly involving the photoreceptor molecule cryptochrome. This hypothesis triggered a considerable amount of research in the past decade. Here, we present an updated picture of the radical-pair photoreceptor hypothesis. In our review, we will focus on insights that can assist biologists in their search for the elusive magnetoreceptors. PMID:20129953

  2. Structure and function of the photoreceptor stentorins in Stentor coeruleus. I. Partial characterization of the photoreceptor organelle and stentorins.

    PubMed

    Kim, I H; Rhee, J S; Huh, J W; Florell, S; Faure, B; Lee, K W; Kahsai, T; Song, P S; Tamai, N; Yamazaki, T

    1990-08-01

    The unicellular ciliary protozoan, Stentor coeruleus, exhibits photophobic and phototactic responses to visible light stimuli. The pigment granule contains the photoreceptor chromoproteins (stentorins). Stentorin localized in the pigment granules of the cell serves as the primary photoreceptor for the photophobic and phototactic responses in this organism. An initial characterization of the pigment granules has been described in terms of size, absorbance spectra and ATPase activity. Two forms of the stentorin pigments have been isolated from the pigment granules. Stentorin I has an apparent molecular weight of 68,600 and 52,000 by SDS-PAGE (at 10 and 13% gel, respectively) or 102,000 by steric exclusion HPLC, whereas stentorin II is a larger molecular assembly probably composed of several proteins (mol. wt. greater than 500,000). Stentorin I is composed of at least two heterologous subunits corresponding to apparent mol. wts. of 46,000 (fluorescent, Coomassie blue negative) and 52,000 (fluorescent, Coomassie blue positive) on SDS-PAGE (13% gel). However, these values were found to be strongly dependent on the degree of crosslinking in the acrylamide gel. Stentorin II appears to be the primary photoreceptor whose absorption and fluorescence properties are consistent with the action spectra for the photoresponses of the ciliate to visible light. PMID:2378901

  3. Forced convection of water in rod-bundles

    SciTech Connect

    Su, Bingjing; El-Genk, M.S. )

    1993-03-01

    Heat transfer of water in rod-bundles is of particular importance in many engineering applications. Although numerous experimental studies have been conducted to develop heat transfer correlations for forced convection in rod-bundles, with either a square or a triangular lattice, most data was taken at high Reynolds numbers (Re > 6,000); only a few data points had been reported at lower Reynolds number [1-5]. Recently, El Genk and co-workers have performed a series of heat transfer experiments of forced convection of water at the low and high Reynolds numbers as well as of natural and combined convection in uniformly heated, triangularly and square arrayed rod-bundles with P/D = 1.25, 1.38, and 1.5 [6-10]. Like all other investigators, they correlated the heat transfer data for square lattice and triangular lattice separately, with P/D as a parameter. This paper shows that forced convection data for both square and triangularly arrayed rod-bundles, when expressed in terms of the bundle porosity, can be represented by a single correlation, one each for forced turbulent convection land forced laminar convection. Also, the experimental values of the Reynolds number at the transition between these two convection regimes is expressed in terms of the bundle porosity, regardless of the lattice type and rod diameter. This approach reduces the number and simplifies the form of the forced convection correlations, making them easy to use in potential engineering applications. Although the effect of the rod diameter and the type of lattice in the bundles is implicit in the expressions of the bundle porosity, it is explicit in the definition of the heated equivalent diameter in both Re and Nu, and hence will influence the heat transfer coefficient.

  4. 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.

  5. Moire modulation transfer function of alexandrite rods and their thresholds as lasers

    SciTech Connect

    Kafri, O.; Samelson, H.; Chin, T.; Heller, D.F.

    1986-04-01

    We show that there is a simple correlation between the modulation transfer function (MTF) of alexandrite laser rods and the thresholds of these rods as cw lasers. Thus the MTF provides a novel and important way to evaluate material (before or after fabrication) for use in solid-state lasers. This approach should be generally applicable to all solid-state laser materials.

  6. A Novel In Vivo Model of Focal Light Emitting Diode-Induced Cone-Photoreceptor Phototoxicity: Neuroprotection Afforded by Brimonidine, BDNF, PEDF or bFGF

    PubMed Central

    García-Ayuso, Diego; Alarcón-Martínez, Luis; Jiménez-López, Manuel; Bernal-Garro, José Manuel; Nieto-López, Leticia; Nadal-Nicolás, Francisco Manuel; Villegas-Pérez, María Paz; Wheeler, Larry A.; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    We have investigated the effects of light-emitting diode (LED)-induced phototoxicity (LIP) on cone-photoreceptors and their protection with brimonidine (BMD), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) or basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF). In anesthetized, dark adapted, adult albino rats a blue (400 nm) LED was placed perpendicular to the cornea (10 sec, 200 lux) and the effects were investigated using Spectral Domain Optical Coherence Tomography (SD-OCT) and/or analysing the retina in oriented cross-sections or wholemounts immune-labelled for L- and S-opsin and counterstained with the nuclear stain DAPI. The effects of topical BMD (1%) or, intravitreally injected BDNF (5 µg), PEDF (2 µg), CNTF (0.4 µg) or bFGF (1 µg) after LIP were examined on wholemounts at 7 days. SD-OCT showed damage in a circular region of the superotemporal retina, whose diameter varied from 1,842.4±84.5 µm (at 24 hours) to 1,407.7±52.8 µm (at 7 days). This region had a progressive thickness diminution from 183.4±5 µm (at 12 h) to 114.6±6 µm (at 7 d). Oriented cross-sections showed within the light-damaged region of the retina massive loss of rods and cone-photoreceptors. Wholemounts documented a circular region containing lower numbers of L- and S-cones. Within a circular area (1 mm or 1.3 mm radius, respectively) in the left and in its corresponding region of the contralateral-fellow-retina, total L- or S-cones were 7,118±842 or 661±125 for the LED exposed retinas (n = 7) and 14,040±1,860 or 2,255±193 for the fellow retinas (n = 7), respectively. BMD, BDNF, PEDF and bFGF but not CNTF showed significant neuroprotective effects on L- or S-cones. We conclude that LIP results in rod and cone-photoreceptor loss, and is a reliable, quantifiable model to study cone-photoreceptor degeneration. Intravitreal BDNF, PEDF or bFGF, or topical BMD afford significant cone neuroprotection in this model

  7. Structural Integrity Testing Method for PRSEUS Rod-Wrap Stringer Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, John T.; Grenoble, Ray W.; Pickell, Robert D.

    2012-01-01

    NASA Langley Research Center and The Boeing Company are developing an innovative composite structural concept, called PRSEUS, for the flat center section of a future environmentally friendly hybrid wing body (HWB) aircraft. The PRSEUS (Pultruded Rod Stitched Efficient Unitized Structure) concept uses dry textile preforms for the skins, frames, and stiffener webs. The highly loaded stiffeners are made from precured unidirectional carbon/epoxy rods and dry fiber preforms. The rods are wrapped with the dry fiber preforms and a resin infusion process is used to form the rod-wrap stiffeners. The structural integrity of the rod-wrap interface is critical for maintaining the panel s high strength and bending rigidity. No standard testing method exists for testing the strength of the rod-wrap bondline. Recently, Boeing proposed a rod push-out testing method and conducted some preliminary tests using this method. This paper details an analytical study of the rod-wrap bondline. The rod-wrap interface is modeled as a cohesive zone for studying the initiation and growth of interfacial debonding during push-out testing. Based on the correlations of analysis results and Boeing s test data, the adequacy of the rod-wrap testing method is evaluated, and potential approaches for improvement of the test method are proposed.

  8. Reprogramming Progeny Cells of Embryonic RPE to Produce Photoreceptors: Development of Advanced Photoreceptor Traits under the Induction of neuroD

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Lina; Yan, Run-Tao; Li, Xiumei; Chimento, Melissa; Wang, Shu-Zhen

    2008-01-01

    PURPOSE In examining the prospect of producing functional photoreceptors by reprogramming the differentiation of RPE progeny cells, this study was conducted to investigate whether reprogrammed cells can develop highly specialized ultrastructural and physiological traits that characterize retinal photoreceptors. METHODS Cultured chick RPE cells were reprogrammed to differentiate along the photoreceptor pathway by ectopic expression of neuroD. Cellular ultrastructure was examined with electron microscopy. Cellular physiology was studied by monitoring cellular free calcium (Ca2+) levels in dark-adapted cells in response to light and in light-bleached cells in response to 9-cis-retinal. RESULTS Reprogrammed cells were found to localize red opsin protein appropriately to the apex. These cells developed inner segments rich in mitochondria, and while in culture, some formed rudimentary outer segments, analogous to those of developing photoreceptors in the retina. In response to light, reprogrammed cells reduced their Ca2+ levels, as observed with developing retinal photoreceptors in culture. Further, on exposure to 9-cis-retinal, the light-bleached, reprogrammed cells increased their Ca2+ levels, reminiscent of visual cycle recovery. CONCLUSIONS These results indicate the potential of reprogrammed cells to develop advanced ultrastructural and physiological traits of photoreceptors and point to reprogramming progeny cells of embryonic RPE as a possible alternative in producing developing photoreceptors. PMID:18469196

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. Random Packings Of Rod-Sphere Mixtures Simulated By Mechanical Contraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kyrylyuk, Andriy V.; Wouterse, Alan; Philipse, Albert P.

    2009-06-01

    We study the random close packing of a binary mixture of spheres and rod-like particles (spherocylinders) by the mechanical contraction computer simulation. We investigate the universality in packing of near-spheres by monitoring the position and the value of the maximum in the mixture packing density as a function of the mixture composition and the rod aspect ratio. We find that independently of the mixture composition the particles pack more efficiently/densely as the rod aspect ratio is perturbed slightly from zero and the maximum density is always reached at one unique rod aspect ratio of about 0.45. The dependence of the value of the maximum packing fraction on the mixture composition (the relative rod volume fraction) is linear, exhibiting some ideality in packing of near-spheres. This counter-intuitive finding suggests that even for high rod concentrations in a rod-sphere mixture the packing is governed by local contacts between the neighboring particles, which is usually observed for dilute colloidal suspensions and granular gases, where there is no correlation between the particles. The plausible explanation for this intriguing behavior is that the correlations between the particles are completely lost in the range of distances of several particle diameters, which can be originated from the decoupling of the orientational and translational degrees of freedom of the nearly spherical rods. This gives rise to the universality and locality of random close packing of the rod-sphere mixtures.

  12. Rod guide/paraffin scraper

    SciTech Connect

    Mabry, J.F.

    1991-02-26

    This patent describes improvement in a rod guide and paraffin scraper. It comprises: a body including longitudinal ribs spaced radially and extending out from the body; having two identical halves with the body surrounding a bore to accept a sucker rod, and each of the identical halves having a locking and tightening feature using a tongue and groove concept for interfitting the halves together over the sucker rod. This improvement comprises a rod guide and paraffin scraper with two identical halves comprising; a cylindrical central body including, at each end, three longitudinal ribs radially spaced to form a triad leaving three flow channels, at each end of the body, of essentially the same size and spacing as the ribs; and an angular wedge with opposingly ramped sides at the inside end of each of the ribs for scraping and directing material into the flow channels; and a set of triangular shaped tongues that interfit with a set of triangular shaped grooves for tightening the identical halves together and over the sucker rod; and a pair of cone-shaped male locks at one end of the identical half to mate with a pair of cone-shaped female locks at the opposite end of the other identical half.

  13. Photoreceptor Cells Produce Inflammatory Mediators That Contribute to Endothelial Cell Death in Diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Tonade, Deoye; Liu, Haitao; Kern, Timothy S.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Recent studies suggest that photoreceptor cells regulate local inflammation in the retina in diabetes. The purpose of this study was to determine if photoreceptor cells themselves produce inflammatory proteins in diabetes and if soluble factors released by photoreceptors in elevated glucose induce inflammatory changes in nearby cells. Methods Laser capture microdissection was used to isolate the outer retina (photoreceptors) from the inner retina in nondiabetic and diabetic mice. Diabetes-induced changes in the expression of inflammatory targets were assessed by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction and immunohistochemistry. Cell culture experiments were carried out to determine if photoreceptors in vitro and ex vivo release soluble mediators that can stimulate nearby cells. Photoreceptor contribution to leukocyte-mediated endothelial cell death was tested using coculture models. Results Messenger ribonucleic acid and protein expression levels for inflammatory proteins intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM1), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), and cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2) were increased in photoreceptors cells in diabetes. In vitro and ex vivo studies show that photoreceptor cells in elevated glucose release mediators that can induce tumor necrosis factor-α in leukocytes and endothelial cells, but not in glia. The soluble mediators released by photoreceptor cells in elevated glucose are regulated by transforming growth factor β-activated kinase 1 and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase (NADPH oxidase) signaling. In contrast to enhanced leukocyte-mediated killing of endothelial cells by leukocytes from wild-type diabetic mice, leukocytes from diabetic mice lacking photoreceptor cells (opsin−/−) did not kill endothelial cells. Conclusions These data indicate that photoreceptor cells are a source of inflammatory proteins in diabetes, and their release of soluble mediators can contribute to the death of retinal capillaries

  14. Transduction of Photoreceptors With Equine Infectious Anemia Virus Lentiviral Vectors: Safety and Biodistribution of StarGen for Stargardt Disease

    PubMed Central

    Binley, Katie; Widdowson, Peter; Loader, Julie; Kelleher, Michelle; Iqball, Sharifah; Ferrige, Georgina; de Belin, Jackie; Carlucci, Marie; Angell-Manning, Diana; Hurst, Felicity; Ellis, Scott; Miskin, James; Fernandes, Alcides; Wong, Paul; Allikmets, Rando; Bergstrom, Christopher; Aaberg, Thomas; Yan, Jiong; Kong, Jian; Gouras, Peter; Prefontaine, Annick; Vezina, Mark; Bussieres, Martin; Naylor, Stuart; Mitrophanous, Kyriacos A.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose. StarGen is an equine infectious anemia virus (EIAV)-based lentiviral vector that expresses the photoreceptor-specific adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-binding cassette transporter (ABCA4) protein that is mutated in Stargardt disease (STGD1), a juvenile macular dystrophy. EIAV vectors are able to efficiently transduce rod and cone photoreceptors in addition to retinal pigment epithelium in the adult macaque and rabbit retina following subretinal delivery. The safety and biodistribution of StarGen following subretinal delivery in macaques and rabbits was assessed. Methods. Regular ophthalmic examinations, IOP measurements, ERG responses, and histopathology were carried out in both species to compare control and vector-treated eyes. Tissue and fluid samples were obtained to evaluate the persistence, biodistribution, and shedding of the vector following subretinal delivery. Results. Ophthalmic examinations revealed a slightly higher level of inflammation in StarGen compared with control treated eyes in both species. However, inflammation was transient and no overt toxicity was observed in StarGen treated eyes and there were no abnormal clinical findings. There was no StarGen-associated rise in IOP or abnormal ERG response in either rabbits or macaques. Histopathologic examination of the eyes did not reveal any detrimental changes resulting from subretinal administration of StarGen. Although antibodies to StarGen vector components were detected in rabbit but not macaque serum, this immunologic response did not result in any long-term toxicity. Biodistribution analysis demonstrated that the StarGen vector was restricted to the ocular compartment. Conclusions. In summary, these studies demonstrate StarGen to be well tolerated and localized following subretinal administration. PMID:23620430

  15. Regulation of cyclic GMP metabolism in toad photoreceptors. Definition of the metabolic events subserving photoexcited and attenuated states

    SciTech Connect

    Dawis, S.M.; Graeff, R.M.; Heyman, R.A.; Walseth, T.F.; Goldberg, N.D.

    1988-06-25

    Photoreceptor metabolism of cGMP and its regulation were characterized in isolated toad retinas by determining the intensity and time dependence of light-induced changes in the following metabolic parameters: cGMP hydrolytic flux determined by the rate of 18O incorporation from 18O-water into retinal guanine nucleotide alpha-phosphoryls; changes in the total concentrations of the guanine nucleotide metabolic intermediates; and changes in the concentration of metabolic GDP calculated from the fraction of the alpha-GDP that undergoes labeling with 18O. With narrow band 500 nm light that preferentially stimulates red rod photoreceptors, a range of intensities covering approximately 5 log units produced increases of over 10-fold in cGMP metabolic flux. However, the characteristics of the cGMP metabolic response over the first 2.5 log units of intensity are readily distinguishable from those at higher intensities which exhibit progressive attenuation by an intensity- and time-dependent process. Over the range of low intensities the metabolic response is characterized by 1) increases in cGMP hydrolytic flux of up to 8-fold as a logarithmic function of intensity of photic stimulation that are sustained for at least 200 s; 2) small increases or no change in the concentration of total cGMP; 3) large increases of up to 10-fold in the concentration of metabolically active GDP as a linear function of intensity with no significant change in the tissue concentrations of total GDP or GTP; and 4) amplification of the photosignal by the metabolism of approximately 10,000 molecules of cGMP per photoisomerization with the major site of amplification at the level of the interaction of bleached rhodopsin with G-protein.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Retinal and lenticular ultrastructure in the aestivating salamanderfish, Lepidogalaxias salamandroides (Galaxiidae, Teleostei) with special reference to a new type of photoreceptor mosaic.

    PubMed

    Collin, S P; Collin, H B

    1998-10-01

    The salamanderfish, Lepidogalaxias salamandroides (Galaxiidae, Teleostei) is endemic to southwestern Australia and inhabits shallow, freshwater pools which evaporate during the hot summer months. Burrowing into the substrate in response to falling water levels allows these fish to aestivate for extended periods of time while encapsulated in a mucous cocoon even when the pools contain no water. Only a few minutes after a major rainfall, these fish emerge into relatively clear water which subsequently becomes laden with tannin, turning the water black and reducing the pH to approximately 4.3. As part of a large study of the visual adaptations of this unique species, the retinal and lenticular morphology of the aestivating salamanderfish is examined at the level of the light and electron microscopes. The inner retina is highly vascularised by a complex system of vitreal blood vessels, while the outer retina receives a blood supply by diffusion from a choriocapillaris. This increased retinal blood supply may be an adaptation for reducing the oxygen tension during critical periods of aestivation. Large numbers of Müller cells traverse the thickness of the retina from the inner to the outer limiting membranes. The ganglion cells are arranged in two ill-defined layers, separated from a thick inner nuclear layer containing two layers of horizontal cells by a soma-free inner plexiform layer. The photoreceptors can be divided into three types typical of many early actinopterygian representatives; equal double cones, small single cones and large rods (2:1:1). These photoreceptors are arranged into a unique regular square mosaic comprising a large rod bordered by four equal double cones with a small single cone located at the corner of each repeating unit. The double cones may optimise perception of mobile prey which it tracks by flexion of its head and "neck" and the large rods may increase sensitivity in the dark tannin-rich waters in which it lives. Each single cone also

  19. Regulation of cGMP levels by guanylate cyclase in truncated frog rod outer segments

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    Cyclic GMP is the second messenger in phototransduction and regulates the photoreceptor current. In the present work, we tried to understand the regulation mechanism of cytoplasmic cGMP levels in frog photoreceptors by measuring the photoreceptor current using a truncated rod outer segment (tROS) preparation. Since exogenously applied substance diffuses into tROS from the truncated end, we could examine the biochemical reactions relating to the cGMP metabolism by manipulating the cytoplasmic chemical condition. In tROS, exogenously applied GTP produced a dark current whose amplitude was half-maximal at approximately 0.4 mM GTP. The conductance for this current was suppressed by light in a fashion similar to when it is activated by cGMP. In addition, no current was produced in the absence of Mg2+, which is known to be necessary for the guanylate cyclase activity. These results indicate that guanylate cyclase was present in tROS and synthesized cGMP from exogenously applied GTP. The enzyme activity was distributed throughout the rod outer segment. The amount of synthesized cGMP increased as the cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration of tROS decreased, which indicated the activation of guanylate cyclase at low Ca2+ concentrations. Half-maximal effect of Ca2+ was observed at approximately 100 nM. tROS contained the proteins involved in the phototransduction mechanism and therefore, we could examine the regulation of the light response waveform by Ca2+. At low Ca2+ concentrations, the time course of the light response was speeded up probably because cGMP recovery was facilitated by activation of the cyclase. Then, if the cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration of a photoreceptor decreases during light stimulation, the Ca2+ decrease may explain the acceleration of the light response during light adaptation. In tROS, however, we did observe an acceleration during repetitive light flashes when the cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration increased during the stimulation. This result suggests the

  20. Conjunctivally Applied BDNF Protects Photoreceptors from Light-Induced Damage

    PubMed Central

    Cerri, Elisa; Origlia, Nicola; Falsini, Benedetto; Barloscio, Davide; Fabiani, Carlotta; Sansò, Marco; Ottino, Sara; Giovannini, Luca; Domenici, Luciano

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To test whether the topical eye treatment with BDNF prevents the effects of continuous light exposure (LE) in the albino rat retina. Methods Two groups of albino rats were used. The first group of rats received an intraocular injection of BDNF (2 μL, 1 μg/μL) before LE, while the second group was treated with one single drop of BDNF (10 μL, 12 μg/μL) dissolved in different types of solutions (physiological solution, the polysaccharide fraction of Tamarind gum, TSP, and sodium carboxy methyl cellulose), at the level of conjunctival fornix before LE. The level of BDNF in the retina and optic nerve was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. We recorded the flash electroretinogram (fERG) in dark adapted rats 1 week after LE. At the end of the recording session, the retinas were removed and labeled so that the number of photoreceptors nuclear rows and thickness of the outer nuclear layer was analyzed. Results Intravitreal injection of BDNF before LE prevented fERG impairment. Different ophthalmic preparations were used for topical eye application; the TSP resulted the most suitable vehicle to increase BDNF level in the retina and optic nerve. Topical eye application with BDNF/TSP before LE partially preserved both fERG response and photoreceptors. Conclusions Topical eye treatment with BDNF represents a suitable, noninvasive tool to increase the retinal content of BDNF up to a level capable of exerting neuroprotection toward photoreceptors injured by prolonged LE. Translational Relevance A collyrium containing BDNF may serve as an effective, clinically translational treatment against retinal degeneration. PMID:27190697

  1. Directionality of individual cone photoreceptors in the parafoveal region.

    PubMed

    Morris, Hugh J; Blanco, Leonardo; Codona, Johanan L; Li, Simone L; Choi, Stacey S; Doble, Nathan

    2015-12-01

    The pointing direction of cone photoreceptors can be inferred from the Stiles-Crawford Effect of the First Kind (SCE-I) measurement. Healthy retinas have tightly packed cones with a SCE-I function peak either centered in the pupil or with a slight nasal bias. Various retinal pathologies can change the profile of the SCE-I function implying that the arrangement or the light capturing properties of the cone photoreceptors are affected. Measuring the SCE-I may reveal early signs of photoreceptor change before actual cell apoptosis occurs. In vivo retinal imaging with adaptive optics (AO) was used to measure the pointing direction of individual cones at eight retinal locations in four control human subjects. Retinal images were acquired by translating an aperture in the light delivery arm through 19 different locations across a subject's entrance pupil. Angular tuning properties of individual cones were calculated by fitting a Gaussian to the reflected intensity profile of each cone projected onto the pupil. Results were compared to those from an accepted psychophysical SCE-I measurement technique. The maximal difference in cone directionality of an ensemble of cones, ρ¯, between the major and minor axes of the Gaussian fit was 0.05 versus 0.29mm(-2) in one subject. All four subjects were found to have a mean nasal bias of 0.81mm with a standard deviation of ±0.30mm in the peak position at all retinal locations with mean ρ¯ value decreasing by 23% with increasing retinal eccentricity. Results show that cones in the parafoveal region converge towards the center of the pupillary aperture, confirming the anterior pointing alignment hypothesis. PMID:26494187

  2. Light-driven calcium signals in mouse cone photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Wei, Tao; Schubert, Timm; Paquet-Durand, François; Tanimoto, Naoyuki; Chang, Le; Koeppen, Katja; Ott, Thomas; Griesbeck, Oliver; Seeliger, Mathias W; Euler, Thomas; Wissinger, Bernd

    2012-05-16

    Calcium mediates various neuronal functions. The complexity of neuronal Ca²⁺ signaling is well exemplified by retinal cone photoreceptors, which, with their distinct compartmentalization, offer unique possibilities for studying the diversity of Ca²⁺ functions in a single cell. Measuring subcellular Ca²⁺ signals in cones under physiological conditions is not only fundamental for understanding cone function, it also bears important insights into pathophysiological processes governing retinal neurodegeneration. However, due to the proximity of light-sensitive outer segments to other cellular compartments, optical measurements of light-evoked Ca²⁺ responses in cones are challenging. We addressed this problem by generating a transgenic mouse (HR2.1:TN-XL) in which both short- and middle-wavelength-sensitive cones selectively express the genetically encoded ratiometric Ca²⁺ biosensor TN-XL. We show that HR2.1:TN-XL allows recording of light-evoked Ca²⁺ responses using two-photon imaging in individual cone photoreceptor terminals and to probe phototransduction and its diverse regulatory mechanisms with pharmacology at subcellular resolution. To further test this system, we asked whether the classical, nitric oxide (NO)-soluble guanylyl-cyclase (sGC)-cGMP pathway could modulate Ca²⁺ in cone terminals. Surprisingly, NO reduced Ca²⁺ resting levels in mouse cones, without evidence for direct sGC involvement. In conclusion, HR2.1:TN-XL mice offer unprecedented opportunities to elucidate light-driven Ca²⁺ dynamics and their (dys)regulation in cone photoreceptors.

  3. Retinal Hypercholesterolemia Triggers Cholesterol Accumulation and Esterification in Photoreceptor Cells.

    PubMed

    Saadane, Aicha; Mast, Natalia; Dao, Tung; Ahmad, Baseer; Pikuleva, Irina A

    2016-09-23

    The process of vision is impossible without the photoreceptor cells, which have a unique structure and specific maintenance of cholesterol. Herein we report on the previously unrecognized cholesterol-related pathway in the retina discovered during follow-up characterizations of