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Sample records for rod photoreceptor cell

  1. Deafferented Adult Rod Bipolar Cells Create New Synapses with Photoreceptors to Restore Vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beier, Corinne; Hovhannisyan, Anahit; Weiser, Sydney; Kung, Jennifer; Lee, Seungjun; Lee, Dae Yeong; Huie, Philip; Dalal, Roopa; Palanker, Daniel; Sher, Alexander

    2017-04-26

    Upon degeneration of photoreceptors in the adult retina, interneurons, including bipolar cells, exhibit a plastic response leading to their aberrant rewiring. Photoreceptor reintroduction has been suggested as a potential approach to sight restoration, but the ability of deafferented bipolar cells to establish functional synapses with photoreceptors is poorly understood. Here we use photocoagulation to selectively destroy photoreceptors in adult rabbits while preserving the inner retina. We find that rods and cones shift into the ablation zone over several weeks, reducing the blind spot at scotopic and photopic luminances. During recovery, rod and cone bipolar cells exhibit markedly different responses to deafferentation. Rod bipolar cells extend their dendrites to form new synapses with healthy photoreceptors outside the lesion, thereby restoring visual function in the deafferented retina. Secretagogin-positive cone bipolar cells did not exhibit such obvious dendritic restructuring. These findings are encouraging to the idea of photoreceptor reintroduction for vision restoration in patients blinded by retinal degeneration. At the same time, they draw attention to the postsynaptic side of photoreceptor reintroduction; various bipolar cell types, representing different visual pathways, vary in their response to the photoreceptor loss and in their consequent dendritic restructuring.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Loss of photoreceptors during retinal degeneration results in permanent visual impairment. Strategies for vision restoration based on the reintroduction of photoreceptors inherently rely on the ability of the remaining retinal neurons to correctly synapse with new photoreceptors. We show that deafferented bipolar cells in the adult mammalian retina can reconnect to rods and cones and restore retinal sensitivity at scotopic and photopic luminances. Rod bipolar cells extend their dendrites to form new synapses with healthy rod photoreceptors. These findings support the

  2. Notch and Wnt signaling mediated rod photoreceptor regeneration by Muller cells in adult mammalian retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Beltrame Del Debbio

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Evidence emerging from a variety of approaches used in different species suggests that Müller cell function may extend beyond its role of maintaining retinal homeostasis to that of progenitors in the adult retina. Enriched Müller cells in vitro or those that re-enter cell cycle in response to neurotoxin-damage to retina in vivo display multipotential and self-renewing capacities, the cardinal features of stem cells. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We demonstrate that Notch and Wnt signaling activate Müller cells through their canonical pathways and that a rare subset of activated Müller cells differentiates along rod photoreceptor lineage in the outer nuclear layer. The differentiation of activated Müller cells along photoreceptor lineage is confirmed by multiple approaches that included Hoechst dye efflux analysis, genetic analysis using retina from Nrl-GFP mice, and lineage tracing using GS-GFP lentivirus in wild type and rd mice in vitro and S334ter rats in vivo. Examination of S334ter rats for head-neck tracking of visual stimuli, a behavioral measure of light perception, demonstrates a significant improvement in light perception in animals treated to activate Müller cells. The number of activated Müller cells with rod photoreceptor phenotype in treated animals correlates with the improvement in their light perception. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: In summary, our results provide a proof of principle for non-neurotoxin-mediated activation of Müller cells through Notch and Wnt signaling toward the regeneration of rod photoreceptors.

  3. Patterns of cell proliferation and rod photoreceptor differentiation in shark retinas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreiro-Galve, Susana; Rodríguez-Moldes, Isabel; Anadón, Ramón; Candal, Eva

    2010-01-01

    We studied the pattern of cell proliferation and its relation with photoreceptor differentiation in the embryonic and postembryonic retina of two elasmobranchs, the lesser spotted dogfish (Scyliorhinus canicula) and the brown shyshark (Haploblepharus fuscus). Cell proliferation was studied with antibodies raised against proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) and phospho-histone-H3, and early photoreceptor differentiation with an antibody raised against rod opsin. As regards the spatiotemporal distribution of PCNA-immunoreactive cells, our results reveal a gradual loss of PCNA that coincides in a spatiotemporal sequence with the gradient of layer maturation. The presence of a peripheral growth zone containing pure-proliferating retinal progenitors (the ciliary marginal zone) in the adult retina matches with the general pattern observed in other groups of gnathostomous fishes. However, in the shark retina the generation of new cells is not restricted to the ciliary marginal zone but also occurs in retinal areas that contain differentiated cells: (1) in a transition zone that lies between the pure-proliferating ciliary marginal zone and the central (layered) retina; (2) in the differentiating central area up to prehatching embryos where large amounts of PCNA-positive cells were observed even in the inner and outer nuclear layers; (3) and in the retinal pigment epithelium of prehatching embryos. Rod opsin immunoreactivity was observed in both species when the outer plexiform layer begins to be recognized in the central retina and, as we previously observed in trout, coincided temporally with the weakening in PCNA labelling.

  4. Differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells of swine into rod photoreceptors and their integration into the retina.

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    Zhou, Liang; Wang, Wei; Liu, Yongqing; Fernandez de Castro, Juan; Ezashi, Toshihiko; Telugu, Bhanu Prakash V L; Roberts, R Michael; Kaplan, Henry J; Dean, Douglas C

    2011-06-01

    Absence of a regenerative pathway for damaged retina following injury or disease has led to experiments using stem cell transplantation for retinal repair, and encouraging results have been obtained in rodents. The swine eye is a closer anatomical and physiological match to the human eye, but embryonic stem cells have not been isolated from pig, and photoreceptor differentiation has not been demonstrated with induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) of swine. Here, we subjected iPSCs of swine to a rod photoreceptor differentiation protocol consisting of floating culture as embryoid bodies followed by differentiation in adherent culture. Real-time PCR and immunostaining of differentiated cells demonstrated loss of expression of the pluripotent genes POU5F1, NANOG, and SOX2 and induction of rod photoreceptor genes RCVRN, NRL, RHO, and ROM1. While these differentiated cells displayed neuronal morphology, culturing on a Matrigel substratum triggered a further morphological change resulting in concentration of rhodopsin (RHO) and rod outer segment-specific membrane protein 1 in outer segment-like projections resembling those on primary cultures of rod photoreceptors. The differentiated cells were transplanted into the subretinal space of pigs treated with iodoacetic acid to eliminate rod photoreceptors. Three weeks after transplantation, engrafted RHO+ cells were evident in the outer nuclear layer where photoreceptors normally reside. A portion of these transplanted cells had generated projections resembling outer segments. These results demonstrate that iPSCs of swine can differentiate into photoreceptors in culture, and these cells can integrate into the damaged swine neural retina, thus, laying a foundation for future studies using the pig as a model for retinal stem cell transplantation.

  5. Nrl is required for rod photoreceptor development.

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    Mears, A J; Kondo, M; Swain, P K; Takada, Y; Bush, R A; Saunders, T L; Sieving, P A; Swaroop, A

    2001-12-01

    The protein neural retina leucine zipper (Nrl) is a basic motif-leucine zipper transcription factor that is preferentially expressed in rod photoreceptors. It acts synergistically with Crx to regulate rhodopsin transcription. Missense mutations in human NRL have been associated with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. Here we report that deletion of Nrl in mice results in the complete loss of rod function and super-normal cone function, mediated by S cones. The photoreceptors in the Nrl-/- retina have cone-like nuclear morphology and short, sparse outer segments with abnormal disks. Analysis of retinal gene expression confirms the apparent functional transformation of rods into S cones in the Nrl-/- retina. On the basis of these findings, we postulate that Nrl acts as a 'molecular switch' during rod-cell development by directly modulating rod-specific genes while simultaneously inhibiting the S-cone pathway through the activation of Nr2e3.

  6. The translocation of signaling molecules in dark adapting mammalian rod photoreceptor cells is dependent on the cytoskeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reidel, Boris; Goldmann, Tobias; Giessl, Andreas; Wolfrum, Uwe

    2008-10-01

    In vertebrate rod photoreceptor cells, arrestin and the visual G-protein transducin move between the inner segment and outer segment in response to changes in light. This stimulus dependent translocation of signalling molecules is assumed to participate in long term light adaptation of photoreceptors. So far the cellular basis for the transport mechanisms underlying these intracellular movements remains largely elusive. Here we investigated the dependency of these movements on actin filaments and the microtubule cytoskeleton of photoreceptor cells. Co-cultures of mouse retina and retinal pigment epithelium were incubated with drugs stabilizing and destabilizing the cytoskeleton. The actin and microtubule cytoskeleton and the light dependent distribution of signaling molecules were subsequently analyzed by light and electron microscopy. The application of cytoskeletal drugs differentially affected the cytoskeleton in photoreceptor compartments. During dark adaptation the depolymerization of microtubules as well as actin filaments disrupted the translocation of arrestin and transducin in rod photoreceptor cells. During light adaptation only the delivery of arrestin within the outer segment was impaired after destabilization of microtubules. Movements of transducin and arrestin required intact cytoskeletal elements in dark adapting cells. However, diffusion might be sufficient for the fast molecular movements observed as cells adapt to light. These findings indicate that different molecular translocation mechanisms are responsible for the dark and light associated translocations of arrestin and transducin in rod photoreceptor cells.

  7. Niflumic acid reduces the hyperpolarization-activated current (I(h)) in rod photoreceptor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satoh, T O; Yamada, M

    2001-08-01

    We examined the effects of niflumic acid (NFA), a chloride channel blocker, on the hyperpolarization-activated current (I(h)) in newt rod photoreceptors. At 100 microM, NFA delayed the activation of I(h) induced by hyperpolarizing voltage pulses to -83 mV from a holding potential of -43 mV, and reduced the steady-state current. However, reduction by NFA was weakened when I(h) was activated by hyperpolarizing steps to -123 mV, suggesting that these effects were voltage-dependent. The suppressive effects of NFA on I(h) were accompanied by a negative shift in activation voltage. NFA also delayed the relaxation of I(h) tail currents, showing that this drug also inhibited deactivation of the current. The reversal potential and the fully activated conductance were not affected. These observations suggest that NFA reduces I(h) by modifying the gating kinetics of the underlying channels. The suppressive actions of NFA remained when intracellular Ca2+ was strongly chelated, and the failure of suppression by NFA in inside-out patches suggests that the agent may act on the I(h) channel from the extracellular side. These results, obtained in rod photoreceptors, are consistent with similar effects of NFA on I(f) in cardiac myocytes, suggesting that both currents share similar pharmacological properties.

  8. Rod and cone photoreceptor cells produce ROS in response to stress in a live retinal explant system.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Bhatt, Lavinia

    2010-01-01

    PURPOSE: The production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) can lead to oxidative stress, which is a strong contributory factor to many ocular diseases. In this study, the removal of trophic factors is used as a model system to investigate the effects of stress in the retina. The aims were to determine if both rod and cone photoreceptor cells produce ROS when they are deprived of trophic factor support and to demonstrate if the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidase (Nox) enzymes are responsible for this ROS production. METHODS: Retinas were explanted from mice aged between postnatal days 8-10 and cultured overnight. The following morning, confocal microscopy combined with various fluorescent probes was used to detect the production of ROS. Each time peanut agglutinin (PNA), a cone photoreceptor marker, was used to facilitate orientation of the retina. Dihydroethidium and dihydrorhodamine 123 (DHR123) were used to determine which cells produce ROS. Subsequently, western blots of retinal serial sections were used to detect the presence of Noxs in the different retinal layers. The Nox inhibitor apocynin was then tested to determine if it altered the production of ROS within these cells. RESULTS: Live retinal explants, viewed at high magnifications using confocal microscopy, displayed an increase in the fluorescent products of dihydroethidium and DHR123 upon serum removal when compared to controls. DHR123 fluorescence, once oxidized, localized to mitochondria and was found in the same focal plane as the PNA staining. This showed that cones and rods produced ROS when stressed. Retinal serial sectioning established that the photoreceptor layer expressed Nox4, dual oxidase (Duox) 1, and Duox2 at varying levels. Finally, the Nox inhibitor apocynin decreased the burst stimulated by the stress of serum removal. CONCLUSIONS: Confocal microscopy and PNA staining allowed differentiation of cell types within the outermost layers of the retina, demonstrating

  9. NRL-Regulated Transcriptome Dynamics of Developing Rod Photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jung-Woong; Yang, Hyun-Jin; Brooks, Matthew John; Zelinger, Lina; Karakülah, Gökhan; Gotoh, Norimoto; Boleda, Alexis; Gieser, Linn; Giuste, Felipe; Whitaker, Dustin Thad; Walton, Ashley; Villasmil, Rafael; Barb, Jennifer Joanna; Munson, Peter Jonathan; Kaya, Koray Dogan; Chaitankar, Vijender; Cogliati, Tiziana; Swaroop, Anand

    2016-11-22

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) guiding differentiation of cell types and cell assemblies in the nervous system are poorly understood because of inherent complexities and interdependence of signaling pathways. Here, we report transcriptome dynamics of differentiating rod photoreceptors in the mammalian retina. Given that the transcription factor NRL determines rod cell fate, we performed expression profiling of developing NRL-positive (rods) and NRL-negative (S-cone-like) mouse photoreceptors. We identified a large-scale, sharp transition in the transcriptome landscape between postnatal days 6 and 10 concordant with rod morphogenesis. Rod-specific temporal DNA methylation corroborated gene expression patterns. De novo assembly and alternative splicing analyses revealed previously unannotated rod-enriched transcripts and the role of NRL in transcript maturation. Furthermore, we defined the relationship of NRL with other transcriptional regulators and downstream cognate effectors. Our studies provide the framework for comprehensive system-level analysis of the GRN underlying the development of a single sensory neuron, the rod photoreceptor. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  10. 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.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  11. Adaptive potentiation in rod photoreceptors after light exposure.

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    McKeown, Alex S; Kraft, Timothy W

    2014-06-01

    Photoreceptors adapt to changes in illumination by altering transduction kinetics and sensitivity, thereby extending their working range. We describe a previously unknown form of rod photoreceptor adaptation in wild-type (WT) mice that manifests as a potentiation of the light response after periods of conditioning light exposure. We characterize the stimulus conditions that evoke this graded hypersensitivity and examine the molecular mechanisms of adaptation underlying the phenomenon. After exposure to periods of saturating illumination, rods show a 10-35% increase in circulating dark current, an adaptive potentiation (AP) to light exposure. This potentiation grows as exposure to light is extended up to 3 min and decreases with longer exposures. Cells return to their initial dark-adapted sensitivity with a time constant of recovery of ∼7 s. Halving the extracellular Mg concentration prolongs the adaptation, increasing the time constant of recovery to 13.3 s, but does not affect the magnitude of potentiation. In rods lacking guanylate cyclase activating proteins 1 and 2 (GCAP(-/-)), AP is more than doubled compared with WT rods, and halving the extracellular Mg concentration does not affect the recovery time constant. Rods from a mouse expressing cyclic nucleotide-gated channels incapable of binding calmodulin also showed a marked increase in the amplitude of AP. Application of an insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R) kinase inhibitor (Tyrphostin AG1024) blocked AP, whereas application of an insulin receptor kinase inhibitor (HNMPA(AM)3) failed to do so. A broad-acting tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor (orthovanadate) also blocked AP. Our findings identify a unique form of adaptation in photoreceptors, so that they show transient hypersensitivity to light, and are consistent with a model in which light history, acting via the IGF-1R, can increase the sensitivity of rod photoreceptors, whereas the photocurrent overshoot is regulated by Ca-calmodulin and Ca(2

  12. Visual transduction in human rod photoreceptors.

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

    1993-05-01

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

  13. Biophysical mechanism of transient retinal phototropism in rod photoreceptors

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    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.

  14. Mouse ganglion-cell photoreceptors are driven by the most sensitive rod pathway and by both types of cones.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shijun Weng

    Full Text Available Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (iprgcs are depolarized by light by two mechanisms: directly, through activation of their photopigment melanopsin; and indirectly through synaptic circuits driven by rods and cones. To learn more about the rod and cone circuits driving ipRGCs, we made multielectrode array (MEA and patch-clamp recordings in wildtype and genetically modified mice. Rod-driven ON inputs to ipRGCs proved to be as sensitive as any reaching the conventional ganglion cells. These signals presumably pass in part through the primary rod pathway, involving rod bipolar cells and AII amacrine cells coupled to ON cone bipolar cells through gap junctions. Consistent with this interpretation, the sensitive rod ON input to ipRGCs was eliminated by pharmacological or genetic disruption of gap junctions, as previously reported for conventional ganglion cells. A presumptive cone input was also detectable as a brisk, synaptically mediated ON response that persisted after disruption of rod ON pathways. This was roughly three log units less sensitive than the rod input. Spectral analysis revealed that both types of cones, the M- and S-cones, contribute to this response and that both cone types drive ON responses. This contrasts with the blue-OFF, yellow-ON chromatic opponency reported in primate ipRGCs. The cone-mediated response was surprisingly persistent during steady illumination, echoing the tonic nature of both the rod input to ipRGCs and their intrinsic, melanopsin-based phototransduction. These synaptic inputs greatly expand the dynamic range and spectral bandpass of the non-image-forming visual functions for which ipRGCs provide the principal retinal input.

  15. Stimulus-evoked outer segment changes in rod photoreceptors

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    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.

  16. Adaptive potentiation in rod photoreceptors after light exposure

    OpenAIRE

    McKeown, Alex S; Kraft, Timothy W.

    2014-01-01

    Photoreceptors adapt to changes in illumination by altering transduction kinetics and sensitivity, thereby extending their working range. We describe a previously unknown form of rod photoreceptor adaptation in wild-type (WT) mice that manifests as a potentiation of the light response after periods of conditioning light exposure. We characterize the stimulus conditions that evoke this graded hypersensitivity and examine the molecular mechanisms of adaptation underlying the phenomenon. After e...

  17. miR Cluster 143/145 Directly Targets Nrl and Regulates Rod Photoreceptor Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sreekanth, Sreekumaran; Rasheed, Vazhanthodi A; Soundararajan, Lalitha; Antony, Jayesh; Saikia, Minakshi; Sivakumar, Krishnankutty Chandrika; Das, Ani V

    2016-11-23

    Retinal histogenesis requires coordinated and temporal functioning of factors by which different cell types are generated from multipotent progenitors. Development of rod photoreceptors is regulated by multiple transcription factors, and Nrl is one of the major factors involved in their fate specification. Presence or absence of Nrl at the postnatal stages decides the generation of cone photoreceptors or other later retinal cells. This suggests the need for regulated expression of Nrl in order to accelerate the generation of other cell types during retinal development. We found that miR cluster 143/145, comprising miR-143 and miR-145, targets and imparts a posttranscriptional inhibition of Nrl. Expression of both miRNAs was differentially regulated during retinal development and showed least expression at PN1 stage in which most of the rod photoreceptors are generated. Downregulation of rod photoreceptor regulators and markers upon miR cluster 143/145 overexpression demonstrated that this cluster indeed negatively regulates rod photoreceptors. Further, we prove that Nrl positively regulates miR cluster 143/145, thus establishing a feedback loop regulatory mechanism. This may be one possible mechanism by which Nrl is posttranscriptionally regulated to facilitate the generation of other cell types in retina.

  18. Direct cell fate conversion of human somatic stem cells into cone and rod photoreceptor-like cells by inhibition of microRNA-203

    OpenAIRE

    Choi, Soon Won; Shin, Ji-Hee; Kim, Jae-Jun; Shin, Tae-Hoon; Seo, Yoojin; Kim, Hyung-Sik; Kang, Kyung-Sun

    2016-01-01

    Stem cell-based photoreceptor differentiation strategies have been the recent focus of therapies for retinal degenerative diseases. Previous studies utilized embryonic stem (ES) cells and neural retina differentiation cocktails, including DKK1 and Noggin. Here, we show a novel microRNA-mediated strategy of retina differentiation from somatic stem cells, which are potential allogeneic cell sources. Human amniotic epithelial stem cells (AESCs) and umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem c...

  19. Transformation of cone precursors to functional rod photoreceptors by bZIP transcription factor NRL.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Edwin C T; Khan, Naheed; Novelli, Elena; Khanna, Hemant; Strettoi, Enrica; Swaroop, Anand

    2007-01-30

    Networks of transcriptional regulatory proteins dictate specification of neural lineages from multipotent retinal progenitors. Rod photoreceptor differentiation requires the basic motif-leucine zipper (bZIP) transcription factor NRL, because loss of Nrl in mice (Nrl-/-) results in complete transformation of rods to functional cones. To examine the role of NRL in cell fate determination, we generated transgenic mice that express Nrl under the control of Crx promoter in postmitotic photoreceptor precursors of WT and Nrl-/- retina. We show that NRL expression, in both genetic backgrounds, leads to a functional retina with only rod photoreceptors. The absence of cones does not alter retinal lamination, although cone synaptic circuitry is now recruited by rods. Ectopic expression of NRL in developing cones can also induce rod-like characteristics and partially suppress cone-specific gene expression. We show that NRL is associated with specific promoter sequences in Thrb (encoding TRbeta2 transcription factor required for M-cone differentiation) and S-opsin and may, therefore, directly participate in transcriptional suppression of cone development. Our studies establish that NRL is not only essential but is sufficient for rod differentiation and that postmitotic photoreceptor precursors are competent to make binary decisions during early retinogenesis.

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

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    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.

  1. 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.

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    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 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.

  2. Direct cell fate conversion of human somatic stem cells into cone and rod photoreceptor-like cells by inhibition of microRNA-203.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Soon Won; Shin, Ji-Hee; Kim, Jae-Jun; Shin, Tae-Hoon; Seo, Yoojin; Kim, Hyung-Sik; Kang, Kyung-Sun

    2016-07-05

    Stem cell-based photoreceptor differentiation strategies have been the recent focus of therapies for retinal degenerative diseases. Previous studies utilized embryonic stem (ES) cells and neural retina differentiation cocktails, including DKK1 and Noggin. Here, we show a novel microRNA-mediated strategy of retina differentiation from somatic stem cells, which are potential allogeneic cell sources. Human amniotic epithelial stem cells (AESCs) and umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem cells (UCB-MSCs) treated with a retina differentiation cocktail induced gene expressions of retina development-relevant genes. Furthermore, microRNA-203 (miR-203) is abundantly expressed in human AESCs and human UCB-MSCs. This miR-203 is predicted to target multiple retina development-relevant genes, particularly DKK1, CRX, RORβ, NEUROD1, NRL and THRB. The inhibition of miR-203 induced a retina differentiation of AESCs and UCB-MSCs. Moreover, successive treatments of anti-miR-203 led to the expression of both mature photoreceptor (PR) markers, rhodopsin and opsin. In addition, we determined that CRX, NRL and DKK1 are direct targets of miR-203 using a luciferase assay. Thus, the work presented here suggests that somatic stem cells can potentially differentiate into neural retina cell types when treated with anti-miR-203. They may prove to be a source of both PR subtypes for future allogeneic stem cell-based therapies of non-regenerative retina diseases.

  3. Photoreceptor cell dysplasia in two Tippler pigeons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, P A; Munnell, J F; Martin, C L; Prasse, K W; Carmichael, K P

    2004-01-01

    Two 12-week-old Tippler pigeons were evaluated for ocular abnormalities associated with congenital blindness. The pigeons were emaciated and blind. Biomicroscopy and direct and indirect ophthalmoscopy findings of the Tippler pigeons were normal with the exception of partially dilated pupils at rest. Scotopic (blue stimuli) and photopic monocular electroretinograms were extinguished in the blind Tippler pigeons. Histological and electron microscopy studies revealed reduced numbers of rods and cones, and an absence of the double cone complex. The photoreceptor cells' outer segments were absent, and the inner segments were short and broad. The number of cell nuclei in the outer and inner nuclear layers was decreased, and the internal and external plexiform layers were reduced in width. Photoreceptor cell endfeet with developing synaptic ribbons were present in the external plexiform layer. Inflammatory cell and subretinal debris was not seen. The electroretinographic, histopathological, and ultrastructural findings of the blind Tippler pigeons support the diagnosis of a photoreceptor cell dysplasia.

  4. Transcriptional regulation of rod photoreceptor homeostasis revealed by in vivo NRL targetome analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong Hao

    Full Text Available 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.

  5. Transcriptional regulation of rod photoreceptor homeostasis revealed by in vivo NRL targetome analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  6. Transcriptional regulation of rod photoreceptor homeostasis revealed by in vivo NRL targetome analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong Hao

    Full Text Available 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.

  7. Rod photoreceptors express GPR55 in the adult vervet monkey retina

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bouskila, Joseph; Javadi, Pasha; Casanova, Christian

    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...... 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...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. The role of mislocalized phototransduction in photoreceptor cell death of retinitis pigmentosa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takeshi Nakao

    Full Text Available Most of inherited retinal diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP cause photoreceptor cell death resulting in blindness. RP is a large family of diseases in which the photoreceptor cell death can be caused by a number of pathways. Among them, light exposure has been reported to induce photoreceptor cell death. However, the detailed mechanism by which photoreceptor cell death is caused by light exposure is unclear. In this study, we have shown that even a mild light exposure can induce ectopic phototransduction and result in the acceleration of rod photoreceptor cell death in some vertebrate models. In ovl, a zebrafish model of outer segment deficiency, photoreceptor cell death is associated with light exposure. The ovl larvae show ectopic accumulation of rhodopsin and knockdown of ectopic rhodopsin and transducin rescue rod photoreceptor cell death. However, knockdown of phosphodiesterase, the enzyme that mediates the next step of phototransduction, does not. So, ectopic phototransduction activated by light exposure, which leads to rod photoreceptor cell death, is through the action of transducin. Furthermore, we have demonstrated that forced activation of adenylyl cyclase in the inner segment leads to rod photoreceptor cell death. For further confirmation, we have also generated a transgenic fish which possesses a human rhodopsin mutation, Q344X. This fish and rd10 model mice show photoreceptor cell death caused by adenylyl cyclase. In short, our study indicates that in some RP, adenylyl cyclase is involved in photoreceptor cell death pathway; its inhibition is potentially a logical approach for a novel RP therapy.

  10. Rod photoreceptors express GPR55 in the adult vervet monkey retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Bouskila

    Full Text Available 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrow, Andrew J; Wu, Samuel M

    2009-05-06

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng-Yu Wang

    Full Text Available 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. Derivation of Traceable and Transplantable Photoreceptors from Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Decembrini

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Retinal degenerative diseases resulting in the loss of photoreceptors are one of the major causes of blindness. Photoreceptor replacement therapy is a promising treatment because the transplantation of retina-derived photoreceptors can be applied now to different murine retinopathies to restore visual function. To have an unlimited source of photoreceptors, we derived a transgenic embryonic stem cell (ESC line in which the Crx-GFP transgene is expressed in photoreceptors and assessed the capacity of a 3D culture protocol to produce integration-competent photoreceptors. This culture system allows the production of a large number of photoreceptors recapitulating the in vivo development. After transplantation, integrated cells showed the typical morphology of mature rods bearing external segments and ribbon synapses. We conclude that a 3D protocol coupled with ESCs provides a safe and renewable source of photoreceptors displaying a development and transplantation competence comparable to photoreceptors from age-matched retinas.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  16. Feedback Induction of a Photoreceptor-specific Isoform of Retinoid-related Orphan Nuclear Receptor β by the Rod Transcription Factor NRL*

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

    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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Hook, Matthew J; Thoreson, Wallace B

    2015-09-01

    Differences in synaptic transmission between rod and cone photoreceptors contribute to different response kinetics in rod- versus cone-dominated visual pathways. We examined Ca(2+) 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 IC l(Ca) confirmed that endogenous Ca(2+) 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 [Ca(2+)] 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 Ca(2+) 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 Ca(2+) buffering. However, weak Ca(2+) buffering speeded Ca(2+)/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent replenishment of vesicles to ribbons in both rods and cones, thereby enhancing sustained release. In rods, weak Ca(2+) buffering also amplified sustained release by enhancing CICR and CICR-stimulated release of vesicles at nonribbon sites. By contrast, elevating [Ca(2+)] at nonribbon sites in cones with weak Ca(2+) buffering and by inhibiting Ca(2+) extrusion did not trigger additional release, consistent with the notion that exocytosis from cones occurs exclusively at ribbons. The presence of weak endogenous Ca(2+) buffering in rods and cones facilitates slow, sustained exocytosis by enhancing Ca(2+)/CaM-dependent replenishment of ribbons in both rods and cones and by stimulating nonribbon release triggered by CICR in rods.

  19. Measurement of Photon Statistics with Live Photoreceptor Cells

    CERN Document Server

    Sim, Nigel; Bessarab, Dmitri; Jones, C Michael; Krivitsky, Leonid

    2012-01-01

    We analyzed the electrophysiological response of an isolated rod photoreceptor of Xenopus laevis under stimulation by coherent and pseudo-thermal 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 pseudo-thermal 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 in applications of quantum optics in biology.

  20. Growth Factor Receptor-Bound Protein 14 Undergoes Light-Dependent Intracellular Translocation in Rod Photoreceptors: Functional Role on Retinal Insulin Receptor Activation

    OpenAIRE

    Rajala, Ammaji; Roger J. Daly; Tanito, Masaki; Allen, Dustin T.; Lowenna J Holt; Lobanova, Ekaterina; Arshavsky, Vadim Y; Rajala, Raju V.S.

    2009-01-01

    Growth factor receptor-bound protein 14 (Grb14) is involved in growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase signaling. Here we report that light causes a major redistribution of Grb14 among the individual subcellular compartments of the retinal rod photoreceptor. Grb14 is localized predominantly to the inner segment, nuclear layer and synapse in dark-adapted rods, whereas in the light-adapted rods, Grb14 redistributed throughout the entire cell, including the outer segment. The translocation of Grb...

  1. Programming Retinal Stem Cells into Cone Photoreceptors

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-01

    this grant, we sought to investigate the mechanisms that regulate the earliest events in cone photoreceptor development and to exploit this knowledge...the mRNA for three transcription factors promoted cone photoreceptor formation in retinal stem cells derived from human embryonic stem cells. These...reverse vision loss. 15. SUBJECT TERMS Cone photoreceptor, retina, retinal stem cell, Otx2, Onecut1, Blimp1, RNA-seq., transcription factors, and

  2. Generation of a genetically encoded marker of rod photoreceptor outer segment growth and renewal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John J. Willoughby

    2011-10-01

    Vertebrate photoreceptors are specialized light sensing neurons. The photoreceptor outer segment is a highly modified cilium where photons of light are transduced into a chemical and electrical signal. The outer segment has the typical cilary axoneme but, in addition, it has a large number of densely packed, stacked, intramembranous discs. The molecular and cellular mechanisms that contribute to vertebrate photoreceptor outer segment morphogenesis are still largely unknown. Unlike typical cilia, the outer segment is continuously regenerated or renewed throughout the life of the animal through the combined process of distal outer segment shedding and proximal outer segment growth. The process of outer segment renewal was discovered over forty years ago, but we still lack an understanding of how photoreceptors renew their outer segments and few, if any, molecular mechanisms that regulate outer segment growth or shedding have been described. Our lack of progress in understanding how photoreceptors renew their outer segments has been hampered by the difficulty in measuring rates of renewal. We have created a new method that uses heat-shock induction of a fluorescent protein that can be used to rapidly measure outer segment growth rates. We describe this method, the stable transgenic line we created, and the growth rates observed in larval and adult rod photoreceptors using this new method. This new method will allow us to begin to define the genetic and molecular mechanisms that regulate rod outer segment renewal, a crucial aspect of photoreceptor function and, possibly, viability.

  3. Flash responses of mouse rod photoreceptors in the isolated retina and corneal electroretinogram: comparison of gain and kinetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heikkinen, Hanna; Vinberg, Frans; Pitkänen, Marja; Kommonen, Bertel; Koskelainen, Ari

    2012-08-17

    To examine the amplification and kinetics of murine rod photoresponses by recording ERG flash responses in vivo and ex vivo from the same retina. We also aimed to evaluate the two available methods for isolating the rod signal from the ERG flash response, that is, pharmacology and paired flash method on the isolated retina. Dark-adapted ERG responses to full-field flashes of green light were recorded from anesthetized (ketamine/xylazine) C57BL/6N mice. ERG flash responses to homogenous light stimuli arriving from the photoreceptor side were then recorded transretinally from the same retinas, isolated and perfused with Ringer's or Ames' solution at 37°C. The responses were analyzed to determine the a-wave kinetics as well as the estimated flash sensitivity and kinetics of the full rod responses derived with the paired flash protocol. The analysis was complemented with pharmacologic blockade of glutamatergic transmission in the isolated retina. The a-waves were of comparable size, sensitivity and kinetics in vivo and in the isolated retina, but the onset of the b-wave was delayed in the isolated retina. The Lamb-Pugh activation constants determined for the a-waves were similar in both preparations. The kinetics of the derived photoreceptor responses were similar in both conditions, although the responses were consistently slightly slower ex vivo. This was not explicable as a direct effect of ketamine or xylazine on the photoreceptors or as their indirect effect through hyperglycemia, as tested on the isolated retina. Through comparison to the corneal ERG, the transretinal ERG is a valuable tool for assaying the physiologic state of isolated retinal tissue. The rod photoreceptor responses of the intact isolated retina correspond well to those recorded in vivo. The origin of their faster kinetics compared to single cell recordings remains to be determined.

  4. A hybrid photoreceptor expressing both rod and cone genes in a mouse model of enhanced S-cone syndrome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph C Corbo

    2005-08-01

    Full Text Available Rod and cone photoreceptors subserve vision under dim and bright light conditions, respectively. The differences in their function are thought to stem from their different gene expression patterns, morphologies, and synaptic connectivities. In this study, we have examined the photoreceptor cells of the retinal degeneration 7(rd7 mutant mouse, a model for the human enhanced S-cone syndrome (ESCS. This mutant carries a spontaneous deletion in the mouse ortholog of NR2E3, an orphan nuclear receptor transcription factor mutated in ESCS. Employing microarray and in situ hybridization analysis we have found that the rd7 retina contains a modestly increased number of S-opsin-expressing cells that ultrastructurally appear to be normal cones. Strikingly, the majority of the photoreceptors in the rd7 retina represent a morphologically hybrid cell type that expresses both rod- and cone-specific genes. In addition, in situ hybridization screening of genes shown to be up-regulated in the rd7 mutant retina by microarray identified ten new cone-specific or cone-enriched genes with a wide range of biochemical functions, including two genes specifically involved in glucose/glycogen metabolism. We suggest that the abnormal electroretinograms, slow retinal degeneration, and retinal dysmorphology seen in humans with ESCS may, in part, be attributable to the aberrant function of a hybrid photoreceptor cell type similar to that identified in this study. The functional diversity of the novel cone-specific genes identified here indicates molecular differences between rods and cones extending far beyond those previously discovered.

  5. Irradiance encoding in the suprachiasmatic nuclei by rod and cone photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Diepen, Hester C; Ramkisoensing, Ashna; Peirson, Stuart N; Foster, Russell G; Meijer, Johanna H

    2013-10-01

    Light information is transmitted to the central clock of the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) for daily synchronization to the external solar cycle. Essential for synchronization is the capacity of SCN neurons to respond in a sustained and irradiance-dependent manner to light. Melanopsin has been considered to mediate this photosensory task of irradiance detection. By contrast, the contribution of the classical photoreceptors in irradiance encoding is less clear. Here we investigate the role of classical photoreceptors by in vivo electrophysiological responses in freely moving animals to specific wavelengths of light (UV, λmax 365 nm; blue, λmax 467 nm; and green, λmax 505 nm) in both melanopsin-deficient (Opn4(-/-)) mice and mice lacking rods and cones (rd/rd cl). Short- and long-wavelength light induced sustained irradiance-dependent responses in congenic wild-type mice (+19.6%). Unexpectedly, sustained responses to light persisted in Opn4(-/-) mice (+18.4%). These results provide unambiguous evidence that classical photoreceptors can transmit irradiance information to the SCN. In addition, at light intensities that would stimulate rod and cone photoreceptors, the SCN of rd/rd cl mice showed greatly reduced sustained responses to light (+7.8%). Collectively, our data demonstrate a role for classical photoreceptors in illuminance detection by the SCN.

  6. Distinct and atypical intrinsic and extrinsic cell death pathways between photoreceptor cell types upon specific ablation of Ranbp2 in cone photoreceptors.

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    Kyoung-In Cho

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Non-autonomous cell-death is a cardinal feature of the disintegration of neural networks in neurodegenerative diseases, but the molecular bases of this process are poorly understood. The neural retina comprises a mosaic of rod and cone photoreceptors. Cone and rod photoreceptors degenerate upon rod-specific expression of heterogeneous mutations in functionally distinct genes, whereas cone-specific mutations are thought to cause only cone demise. Here we show that conditional ablation in cone photoreceptors of Ran-binding protein-2 (Ranbp2, a cell context-dependent pleiotropic protein linked to neuroprotection, familial necrotic encephalopathies, acute transverse myelitis and tumor-suppression, promotes early electrophysiological deficits, subcellular erosive destruction and non-apoptotic death of cones, whereas rod photoreceptors undergo cone-dependent non-autonomous apoptosis. Cone-specific Ranbp2 ablation causes the temporal activation of a cone-intrinsic molecular cascade highlighted by the early activation of metalloproteinase 11/stromelysin-3 and up-regulation of Crx and CoREST, followed by the down-modulation of cone-specific phototransduction genes, transient up-regulation of regulatory/survival genes and activation of caspase-7 without apoptosis. Conversely, PARP1+ -apoptotic rods develop upon sequential activation of caspase-9 and caspase-3 and loss of membrane permeability. Rod photoreceptor demise ceases upon cone degeneration. These findings reveal novel roles of Ranbp2 in the modulation of intrinsic and extrinsic cell death mechanisms and pathways. They also unveil a novel spatiotemporal paradigm of progression of neurodegeneration upon cell-specific genetic damage whereby a cone to rod non-autonomous death pathway with intrinsically distinct cell-type death manifestations is triggered by cell-specific loss of Ranbp2. Finally, this study casts new light onto cell-death mechanisms that may be shared by human dystrophies with distinct

  7. Rod differentiation factor NRL activates the expression of nuclear receptor NR2E3 to suppress the development of cone photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Edwin C T; Cheng, Hong; Hao, Hong; Jia, Lin; Khan, Naheed Wali; Swaroop, Anand

    2008-10-21

    Neural developmental programs require a high level of coordination between the decision to exit cell cycle and acquisition of cell fate. The Maf-family transcription factor NRL is essential for rod photoreceptor specification in the mammalian retina as its loss of function converts rod precursors to functional cones. Ectopic expression of NRL or a photoreceptor-specific orphan nuclear receptor NR2E3 completely suppresses cone development while concurrently directing the post-mitotic photoreceptor precursors towards rod cell fate. Given that NRL and NR2E3 have overlapping functions and NR2E3 expression is abolished in the Nrl(-/-) retina, we wanted to clarify the distinct roles of NRL and NR2E3 during retinal differentiation. Here, we demonstrate that NRL binds to a sequence element in the Nr2e3 promoter and enhances its activity synergistically with the homeodomain protein CRX. Using transgenic mice, we show that NRL can only partially suppress cone development in the absence of NR2E3. Gene profiling of retinas from transgenic mice that ectopically express NR2E3 or NRL in cone precursors reveals overlapping and unique targets of these two transcription factors. Together with previous reports, our findings establish the hierarchy of transcriptional regulators in determining rod versus cone cell fate in photoreceptor precursors during the development of mammalian retina.

  8. Regulation of Noncoding Transcriptome in Developing Photoreceptors by Rod Differentiation Factor NRL.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelinger, Lina; Karakülah, Gökhan; Chaitankar, Vijender; Kim, Jung-Woong; Yang, Hyun-Jin; Brooks, Matthew J; Swaroop, Anand

    2017-09-01

    Transcriptome analysis by next generation sequencing allows qualitative and quantitative profiling of expression patterns associated with development and disease. However, most transcribed sequences do not encode proteins, and little is known about the functional relevance of noncoding (nc) transcriptome in neuronal subtypes. The goal of this study was to perform a comprehensive analysis of long noncoding (lncRNAs) and antisense (asRNAs) RNAs expressed in mouse retinal photoreceptors. Transcriptomic profiles were generated at six developmental time points from flow-sorted Nrlp-GFP (rods) and Nrlp-GFP;Nrl-/- (S-cone like) mouse photoreceptors. Bioinformatic analysis was performed to identify novel noncoding transcripts and assess their regulation by rod differentiation factor neural retina leucine zipper (NRL). In situ hybridization (ISH) was used for validation and cellular localization. NcRNA profiles demonstrated dynamic yet specific expression signature and coexpression clusters during rod development. In addition to currently annotated 586 lncRNAs and 454 asRNAs, we identified 1037 lncRNAs and 243 asRNAs by de novo assembly. Of these, 119 lncRNAs showed altered expression in the absence of NRL and included NRL binding sites in their promoter/enhancer regions. ISH studies validated the expression of 24 lncRNAs (including 12 previously unannotated) and 4 asRNAs in photoreceptors. Coexpression analysis demonstrated 63 functional modules and 209 significant antisense-gene correlations, allowing us to predict possible role of these lncRNAs in rods. Our studies reveal coregulation of coding and noncoding transcripts in rod photoreceptors by NRL and establish the framework for deciphering the function of ncRNAs during retinal development.

  9. Pineal photoreceptor cells are required for maintaining the circadian rhythms of behavioral visual sensitivity in zebrafish.

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    Xinle Li

    Full Text Available In non-mammalian vertebrates, the pineal gland functions as the central pacemaker that regulates the circadian rhythms of animal behavior and physiology. We generated a transgenic zebrafish line [Tg(Gnat2:gal4-VP16/UAS:nfsB-mCherry] in which the E. coli nitroreductase is expressed in pineal photoreceptor cells. In developing embryos and young adults, the transgene is expressed in both retinal and pineal photoreceptor cells. During aging, the expression of the transgene in retinal photoreceptor cells gradually diminishes. By 8 months of age, the Gnat2 promoter-driven nitroreductase is no longer expressed in retinal photoreceptor cells, but its expression in pineal photoreceptor cells persists. This provides a tool for selective ablation of pineal photoreceptor cells, i.e., by treatments with metronidazole. In the absence of pineal photoreceptor cells, the behavioral visual sensitivity of the fish remains unchanged; however, the circadian rhythms of rod and cone sensitivity are diminished. Brief light exposures restore the circadian rhythms of behavioral visual sensitivity. Together, the data suggest that retinal photoreceptor cells respond to environmental cues and are capable of entraining the circadian rhythms of visual sensitivity; however, they are insufficient for maintaining the rhythms. Cellular signals from the pineal photoreceptor cells may be required for maintaining the circadian rhythms of visual sensitivity.

  10. Special characteristics of the transcription and splicing machinery in photoreceptor cells of the mammalian retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derlig, Kristin; Giessl, Andreas; Brandstätter, Johann Helmut; Enz, Ralf; Dahlhaus, Regina

    2015-11-01

    Chromatin organization and the management of transcription and splicing are fundamental to the correct functioning of every cell but, in particular, for highly active cells such as photoreceptors, the sensory neurons of the retina. Rod photoreceptor cells of nocturnal animals have recently been shown to have an inverted chromatin architecture compared with rod photoreceptor cells of diurnal animals. The heterochromatin is concentrated in the center of the nucleus, whereas the genetically active euchromatin is positioned close to the nuclear membrane. This unique chromatin architecture suggests that the transcription and splicing machinery is also subject to specific adaptations in these cells. Recently, we described the protein Simiate, which is enriched in nuclear speckles and seems to be involved in transcription and splicing processes. Here, we examine the distribution of Simiate and nuclear speckles in neurons of mouse retinae. In retinal neurons of the inner nuclear and ganglion cell layer, Simiate is concentrated in a clustered pattern in the nuclear interior, whereas in rod and cone photoreceptor cells, Simiate is present at the nuclear periphery. Further staining with markers for the transcription and splicing machinery has confirmed the localization of nuclear speckle components at the periphery. Comparing the distribution of nuclear speckles in retinae of the nocturnal mouse with the diurnal degu, we found no differences in the arrangement of the transcription and splicing machinery in their photoreceptor cells, thus suggesting that the organization of these machineries is not related to the animal's lifestyle but rather represents a general characteristic of photoreceptor organization and function.

  11. Protein and signaling networks in vertebrate photoreceptor cells

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    Karl-Wilhelm eKoch

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available 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 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 and is regulated by specific neuronal Ca2+-sensor proteins called GCAPs. At least one guanylate cyclase (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 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.

  12. Overexpression of guanylate cyclase activating protein 2 in rod photoreceptors in vivo leads to morphological changes at the synaptic ribbon.

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    Natalia López-del Hoyo

    Full Text Available 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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Asteriti, Sabrina [Dept. of Translational Research, University of Pisa, Pisa (Italy); Dal Cortivo, Giuditta [Dept. of Life Sciences and Reproduction, University of Verona, Strada Le Grazie 8, Verona (Italy); Pontelli, Valeria [Dept. of Neurological and Movement Sciences, University of Verona, Strada Le Grazie 8, Verona (Italy); Cangiano, Lorenzo [Dept. of Translational Research, University of Pisa, Pisa (Italy); Buffelli, Mario, E-mail: mario.buffelli@univr.it [Dept. of Neurological and Movement Sciences, University of Verona, Strada Le Grazie 8, Verona (Italy); Center for Biomedical Computing, University of Verona, Strada le Grazie 8, 37134 Verona (Italy); Dell’Orco, Daniele, E-mail: daniele.dellorco@univr.it [Dept. of Life Sciences and Reproduction, University of Verona, Strada Le Grazie 8, Verona (Italy); Center for Biomedical Computing, University of Verona, Strada le Grazie 8, 37134 Verona (Italy)

    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.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2012-01-01

    In vitro generation of photoreceptors from stem cells is of great interest for the development of regenerative medicine approaches for patients affected by retinal degeneration and for high throughput drug screens for these diseases. In this study, we show unprecedented high percentages of rod-fated cells from retinal stem cells of the adult ciliary epithelium. Molecular characterization of rod-like cells demonstrates that they lose ciliary epithelial characteristics but acquire photoreceptor...

  15. Control of ligand specificity in cyclic nucleotide-gated channels from rod photoreceptors and olfactory epithelium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altenhofen, W; Ludwig, J; Eismann, E; Kraus, W; Bönigk, W; Kaupp, U B

    1991-11-01

    Cyclic nucleotide-gated ionic channels in photoreceptors and olfactory sensory neurons are activated by binding of cGMP or cAMP to a receptor site on the channel polypeptide. By site-directed mutagenesis and functional expression of bovine wild-type and mutant channels in Xenopus oocytes, we have tested the hypothesis that an alanine/threonine difference in the cyclic nucleotide-binding site determines the specificity of ligand binding, as has been proposed for cyclic nucleotide-dependent protein kinases [Weber, I.T., Shabb, J.B. & Corbin, J.D. (1989) Biochemistry 28, 6122-6127]. The wild-type olfactory channel is approximately 25-fold more sensitive to both cAMP and cGMP than the wild-type rod photoreceptor channel, and both channels are 30- to 40-fold more sensitive to cGMP than to cAMP. Substitution of the respective threonine by alanine in the rod photoreceptor and olfactory channels decreases the cGMP sensitivity of channel activation 30-fold but little affects activation by cAMP. Substitution of threonine by serine, an amino acid that also carries a hydroxyl group, even improves cGMP sensitivity of the wild-type channels 2- to 5-fold. We conclude that the hydroxyl group of Thr-560 (rod) and Thr-537 (olfactory) forms an additional hydrogen bond with cGMP, but not cAMP, and thereby provides the structural basis for ligand discrimination in cyclic nucleotide-gated channels.

  16. Calcium homeostasis in fly photoreceptor cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oberwinkler, J

    2002-01-01

    In fly photoreceptor cells, two processes dominate the Ca2+ homeostasis: light-induced Ca2+ influx through members of the TRP family of ion channels, and Ca2+ extrusion by Na+/Ca2+ exchange.Ca2+ release from intracellular stores is quantitatively insignificant. Both, the light-activated channels and

  17. Fasudil, a Clinically Used ROCK Inhibitor, Stabilizes Rod Photoreceptor Synapses after Retinal Detachment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Townes-Anderson, Ellen; Wang, Jianfeng; Halász, Éva; Sugino, Ilene; Pitler, Amy; Whitehead, Ian; Zarbin, Marco

    2017-06-01

    Retinal detachment disrupts the rod-bipolar synapse in the outer plexiform layer by retraction of rod axons. We showed that breakage is due to RhoA activation whereas inhibition of Rho kinase (ROCK), using Y27632, reduces synaptic damage. We test whether the ROCK inhibitor fasudil, used for other clinical applications, can prevent synaptic injury after detachment. Detachments were made in pigs by subretinal injection of balanced salt solution (BSS) or fasudil (1, 10 mM). In some animals, fasudil was injected intravitreally after BSS-induced detachment. After 2 to 4 hours, retinae were fixed for immunocytochemistry and confocal microscopy. Axon retraction was quantified by imaging synaptic vesicle label in the outer nuclear layer. Apoptosis was analyzed using propidium iodide staining. For biochemical analysis by Western blotting, retinal explants, detached from retinal pigmented epithelium, were cultured for 2 hours. Subretinal injection of fasudil (10 mM) reduced retraction of rod spherules by 51.3% compared to control detachments (n = 3 pigs, P = 0.002). Intravitreal injection of 10 mM fasudil, a more clinically feasible route of administration, also reduced retraction (28.7%, n = 5, P ROCK, was decreased with 30 μM fasudil (n = 8-10 explants, P ROCK signaling with fasudil reduced photoreceptor degeneration and preserved the rod-bipolar synapse after retinal detachment. These results support the possibility, previously tested with Y27632, that ROCK inhibition may attenuate synaptic damage in iatrogenic detachments.

  18. Bipolar Cell-Photoreceptor Connectivity in the Zebrafish (Danio rerio) Retina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yong N.; Tsujimura, Taro; Kawamura, Shoji; Dowling, John E.

    2013-01-01

    Bipolar cells convey luminance, spatial and color information from photoreceptors to amacrine and ganglion cells. We studied the photoreceptor connectivity of 321 bipolar cells in the adult zebrafish retina. 1,1'-Dioctadecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate (DiI) was inserted into whole-mounted transgenic zebrafish retinas to label bipolar cells. The photoreceptors that connect to these DiI-labeled cells were identified by transgenic fluorescence or their positions relative to the fluorescent cones, as cones are arranged in a highly-ordered mosaic: rows of alternating blue- (B) and ultraviolet-sensitive (UV) single cones alternate with rows of red- (R) and green-sensitive (G) double cones. Rod terminals intersperse among cone terminals. As many as 18 connectivity subtypes were observed, 9 of which – G, GBUV, RG, RGB, RGBUV, RGRod, RGBRod, RGBUVRod and RRod bipolar cells – accounted for 96% of the population. Based on their axon terminal stratification, these bipolar cells could be further sub-divided into ON, OFF, and ON-OFF cells. The dendritic spread size, soma depth and size, and photoreceptor connections of the 308 bipolar cells within the 9 common connectivity subtypes were determined, and their dendritic tree morphologies and axonal stratification patterns compared. We found that bipolar cells with the same axonal stratification patterns could have heterogeneous photoreceptor connectivity whereas bipolar cells with the same dendritic tree morphology usually had the same photoreceptor connectivity, although their axons might stratify on different levels. PMID:22907678

  19. STEREOLOGY AND SOME STRUCTURAL CORRELATES OF RETINAL AND PHOTORECEPTOR CELL FUNCTION

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    Terry M Mayhew

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available The retina is the part of the eye which detects light, transduces it into nerve impulses and plays a significant role in visual perception. Sensitivity to light is multi-factorial and depends on the properties of photopigment molecules, their synthesis and incorporation into photoreceptor membranes and the neural circuitry between photoreceptor cells, bipolar neurons and ganglion neurons. In addition, it depends on structural factors such as the absolute and relative numbers of different types of photoreceptor neurons, their subcellular morphology, their distribution across the retina and the physical dimensions (especially surface areas and spatial arrangements of their photoreceptor membranes. At the molecular level, these membranes harbour photosensitive pigment molecules comprising transmembrane glycoproteins (opsins, which vary between photoreceptor cells and a non-protein chromophore. Phototransduction involves a conformational change in the chromophore and activation of an opsin. A transducer G protein, transducin, lowers levels of cGMP and triggers changes in membrane ion permeability including the closure of Na+ channels. This causes the plasmalemma to become less depolarized and the relative hyperpolarization stimulates ganglion cells whose axons form the optic nerve. Phosducin is a light-regulated phosphoprotein located in inner and outer segments of rod photoreceptor cells. It modulates phototransduction by binding to beta and gamma subunits of transducin. This review briefly illustrates ways in which stereology can contribute to our understanding of these processes by providing quantitative data on photoreceptor number, disk membrane surface area and the subcellular immunolocalisation of key molecules.

  20. Ca sup 2+ binding capacity of cytoplasmic proteins from rod photoreceptors is mainly due to arrestin

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    Huppertz, B.; Weyand, I.; Bauer, P.J. (Institut fuer Biologische Informationsverarbeitung, Forschungszentrum Juelich GmbH (Germany, F.R.))

    1990-06-05

    Arrestin (also called S-antigen or 48-kDa protein) binds to photoexcited and phosphorylated rhodopsin and, thereby, blocks competitively the activation of transducin. Using Ca{sup 2+} titration in the presence of the indicator arsenazo III and {sup 45}Ca{sup 2+} autoradiography, we show that arrestin is a Ca2(+)-binding protein. The Ca{sup 2+} binding capacity of arresting-containing protein extracts from bovine rod outer segments is about twice as high as that of arrestin-depleted extracts. The difference in the Ca{sup 2+} binding of arrestin-containing and arrestin-depleted protein extracts was attributed to arrestin. Both, these difference-measurements of protein extracts and the measurements of purified arrestin yield dissociation constants for the Ca{sup 2+} binding of arrestin between 2 and 4 microM. The titration curves are consistent with a molar ratio of one Ca{sup 2+} binding site per arrestin. No Ca{sup 2+} binding in the micromolar range was found in extracts containing mainly transducin and cGMP-phosphodiesterase. Since arrestin is one of the most abundant proteins in rod photoreceptors occurring presumably up to millimolar concentrations in rod outer segments, we suggest that aside from its function to prevent the activation of transducin, arrestin acts probably as an intracellular Ca{sup 2+} buffer.

  1. Rpr- and hid-driven cell death in Drosophila photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Cheng Da; Adams, Sheila M; O'Tousa, Joseph E

    2002-02-01

    The reaper (rpr) and head involution defective (hid) genes mediate programmed cell death (PCD) during Drosophila development. We show that expression of either rpr or hid under control of a rhodopsin promoter induces rapid cell death of adult photoreceptor cells. Ultrastructural analysis revealed that the dying photoreceptor cells share morphological features with other cells undergoing PCD. The anti-apoptotic baculoviral P35 protein acts downstream of hid activity to suppress the photoreceptor cell death driven by rpr and hid. These results establish that the Drosophila photoreceptors are sensitive to the rpr- and hid-driven cell death pathways.

  2. Two types of Tet-On transgenic lines for doxycycline-inducible gene expression in zebrafish rod photoreceptors and a gateway-based tet-on toolkit.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leah J Campbell

    Full Text Available The ability to control transgene expression within specific tissues is an important tool for studying the molecular and cellular mechanisms of development, physiology, and disease. We developed a Tet-On system for spatial and temporal control of transgene expression in zebrafish rod photoreceptors. We generated two transgenic lines using the Xenopus rhodopsin promoter to drive the reverse tetracycline-controlled transcriptional transactivator (rtTA, one with self-reporting GFP activity and one with an epitope tagged rtTA. The self-reporting line includes a tetracycline response element (TRE-driven GFP and, in the presence of doxycycline, expresses GFP in larval and adult rods. A time-course of doxycycline treatment demonstrates that maximal induction of GFP expression, as determined by the number of GFP-positive rods, is reached within approximately 24 hours of drug treatment. The epitope-tagged transgenic line eliminates the need for the self-reporting GFP activity by expressing a FLAG-tagged rtTA protein. Both lines demonstrate strong induction of TRE-driven transgenes from plasmids microinjected into one-cell embryos. These results show that spatial and temporal control of transgene expression can be achieved in rod photoreceptors. Additionally, system components are constructed in Gateway compatible vectors for the rapid cloning of doxycycline-inducible transgenes and use in other areas of zebrafish research.

  3. Knocking Down Snrnp200 Initiates Demorphogenesis of Rod Photoreceptors in Zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yuan; Chen, Xue; Qin, Bing; Zhao, Kanxing; Zhao, Qingshun; Staley, Jonathan P; Zhao, Chen

    2015-01-01

    Purpose. The small nuclear ribonucleoprotein 200 kDa (SNRNP200) gene is a fundamental component for precursor message RNA (pre-mRNA) splicing and has been implicated in the etiology of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP). This study aims to determine the consequences of knocking down Snrnp200 in zebrafish. Methods. Expression of the Snrnp200 transcript in zebrafish was determined via whole mount in situ hybridization. Morpholino oligonucleotide (MO) aiming to knock down the expression of Snrnp200 was injected into zebrafish embryos, followed by analyses of aberrant splicing and expression of the U4/U6-U5 tri-small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs) components and retina-specific transcripts. Systemic changes and retinal phenotypes were further characterized by histological study and immunofluorescence staining. Results. Snrnp200 was ubiquitously expressed in zebrafish. Knocking down Snrnp200 in zebrafish triggered aberrant splicing of the cbln1 gene, upregulation of other U4/U6-U5 tri-snRNP components, and downregulation of a panel of retina-specific transcripts. Systemic defects were found correlated with knockdown of Snrnp200 in zebrafish. Only demorphogenesis of rod photoreceptors was detected in the initial stage, mimicking the disease characteristics of RP. Conclusions. We conclude that knocking down Snrnp200 in zebrafish could alter regular splicing and expression of a panel of genes, which may eventually trigger rod defects.

  4. Knocking Down Snrnp200 Initiates Demorphogenesis of Rod Photoreceptors in Zebrafish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan Liu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. The small nuclear ribonucleoprotein 200 kDa (SNRNP200 gene is a fundamental component for precursor message RNA (pre-mRNA splicing and has been implicated in the etiology of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP. This study aims to determine the consequences of knocking down Snrnp200 in zebrafish. Methods. Expression of the Snrnp200 transcript in zebrafish was determined via whole mount in situ hybridization. Morpholino oligonucleotide (MO aiming to knock down the expression of Snrnp200 was injected into zebrafish embryos, followed by analyses of aberrant splicing and expression of the U4/U6-U5 tri-small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs components and retina-specific transcripts. Systemic changes and retinal phenotypes were further characterized by histological study and immunofluorescence staining. Results. Snrnp200 was ubiquitously expressed in zebrafish. Knocking down Snrnp200 in zebrafish triggered aberrant splicing of the cbln1 gene, upregulation of other U4/U6-U5 tri-snRNP components, and downregulation of a panel of retina-specific transcripts. Systemic defects were found correlated with knockdown of Snrnp200 in zebrafish. Only demorphogenesis of rod photoreceptors was detected in the initial stage, mimicking the disease characteristics of RP. Conclusions. We conclude that knocking down Snrnp200 in zebrafish could alter regular splicing and expression of a panel of genes, which may eventually trigger rod defects.

  5. Regulation of a novel isoform of Receptor Expression Enhancing Protein REEP6 in rod photoreceptors by bZIP transcription factor NRL.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Hong; Veleri, Shobi; Sun, Bo; Kim, Douglas S; Keeley, Patrick W; Kim, Jung-Woong; Yang, Hyun-Jin; Yadav, Sharda P; Manjunath, Souparnika H; Sood, Raman; Liu, Paul; Reese, Benjamin E; Swaroop, Anand

    2014-08-15

    The Maf-family leucine zipper transcription factor NRL is essential for rod photoreceptor development and functional maintenance in the mammalian retina. Mutations in NRL are associated with human retinopathies, and loss of Nrl in mice leads to a cone-only retina with the complete absence of rods. Among the highly down-regulated genes in the Nrl(-/-) retina, we identified receptor expression enhancing protein 6 (Reep6), which encodes a member of a family of proteins involved in shaping of membrane tubules and transport of G-protein coupled receptors. Here, we demonstrate the expression of a novel Reep6 isoform (termed Reep6.1) in the retina by exon-specific Taqman assay and rapid analysis of complementary deoxyribonucleic acid (cDNA) ends (5'-RACE). The REEP6.1 protein includes 27 additional amino acids encoded by exon 5 and is specifically expressed in rod photoreceptors of developing and mature retina. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assay identified NRL binding within the Reep6 intron 1. Reporter assays in cultured cells and transfections in retinal explants mapped an intronic enhancer sequence that mediated NRL-directed Reep6.1 expression. We also demonstrate that knockdown of Reep6 in mouse and zebrafish resulted in death of retinal cells. Our studies implicate REEP6.1 as a key functional target of NRL-centered transcriptional regulatory network in rod photoreceptors. Published by Oxford University Press 2014. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

  6. Photoreceptor Differentiation following Transplantation of Allogeneic Retinal Progenitor Cells to the Dystrophic Rhodopsin Pro347Leu Transgenic Pig

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klassen, H; Kiilgaard, Jens Folke; Warfvinge, K;

    2012-01-01

    Purpose. Transplantation of stem, progenitor, or precursor cells has resulted in photoreceptor replacement and evidence of functional efficacy in rodent models of retinal degeneration. Ongoing work has been directed toward the replication of these results in a large animal model, namely, the pig....... Methods. Retinal progenitor cells were derived from the neural retina of GFP-transgenic pigs and transplanted to the subretinal space of rhodopsin Pro347Leu-transgenic allorecipients, in the early stage of the degeneration and the absence of immune suppression. Results. Results confirm the survival...... of allogeneic porcine RPCs without immune suppression in the setting of photoreceptor dystrophy. The expression of multiple photoreceptor markers by grafted cells included the rod outer segment-specific marker ROM-1. Further evidence of photoreceptor differentiation included the presence of numerous...

  7. Retinoic Acid Protects and Rescues the Development of Zebrafish Embryonic Retinal Photoreceptor Cells from Exposure to Paclobutrazol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wen-Der Wang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Paclobutrazol (PBZ is a widely used fungicide that shows toxicity to aquatic embryos, probably through rain-wash. Here, we specifically focus on its toxic effect on eye development in zebrafish, as well as the role of retinoic acid (RA, a metabolite of vitamin A that controls proliferation and differentiation of retinal photoreceptor cells, in this toxicity. Embryos were exposed to PBZ with or without RA from 2 to 72 h post-fertilization (hpf, and PBZ-treated embryos (2–72 hpf were exposed to RA for additional hours until 120 hpf. Eye size and histology were examined. Expression levels of gnat1 (rod photoreceptor marker, gnat2 (cone photoreceptor marker, aldehyde dehydrogenases (encoding key enzymes for RA synthesis, and phospho-histone H3 (an M-phase marker in the eyes of control and treated embryos were examined. PBZ exposure dramatically reduces photoreceptor proliferation, thus resulting in a thinning of the photoreceptor cell layer and leading to a small eye. Co-treatment of PBZ with RA, or post-treatment of PBZ-treated embryos with RA, partially rescues photoreceptor cells, revealed by expression levels of marker proteins and by retinal cell proliferation. PBZ has strong embryonic toxicity to retinal photoreceptors, probably via suppressing the production of RA, with effects including impaired retinal cell division.

  8. Photoreceptor precursors derived from three-dimensional embryonic stem cell cultures integrate and mature within adult degenerate retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez-Cordero, Anai; West, Emma L; Pearson, Rachael A; Duran, Yanai; Carvalho, Livia S; Chu, Colin J; Naeem, Arifa; Blackford, Samuel J I; Georgiadis, Anastasios; Lakowski, Jorn; Hubank, Mike; Smith, Alexander J; Bainbridge, James W B; Sowden, Jane C; Ali, Robin R

    2013-08-01

    Irreversible blindness caused by loss of photoreceptors may be amenable to cell therapy. We previously demonstrated retinal repair and restoration of vision through transplantation of photoreceptor precursors obtained from postnatal retinas into visually impaired adult mice. Considerable progress has been made in differentiating embryonic stem cells (ESCs) in vitro toward photoreceptor lineages. However, the capability of ESC-derived photoreceptors to integrate after transplantation has not been demonstrated unequivocally. Here, to isolate photoreceptor precursors fit for transplantation, we adapted a recently reported three-dimensional (3D) differentiation protocol that generates neuroretina from mouse ESCs. We show that rod precursors derived by this protocol and selected via a GFP reporter under the control of a Rhodopsin promoter integrate within degenerate retinas of adult mice and mature into outer segment-bearing photoreceptors. Notably, ESC-derived precursors at a developmental stage similar to postnatal days 4-8 integrate more efficiently compared with cells at other stages. This study shows conclusively that ESCs can provide a source of photoreceptors for retinal cell transplantation.

  9. Human retinal disease from AIPL1 gene mutations: foveal cone loss with minimal macular photoreceptors and rod function remaining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Samuel G; Cideciyan, Artur V; Aleman, Tomas S; Sumaroka, Alexander; Roman, Alejandro J; Swider, Malgorzata; Schwartz, Sharon B; Banin, Eyal; Stone, Edwin M

    2011-01-05

    To determine the human retinal phenotype caused by mutations in the gene encoding AIPL1 (Aryl hydrocarbon receptor-interacting protein-like 1) now that there are proof-of-concept results for gene therapy success in Aipl1-deficient mice. Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA) patients (n = 10) and one patient with a later-onset retinal degeneration (RD) and AIPL1 mutations were studied by ocular examination, retinal imaging, perimetry, full-field sensitivity testing, and pupillometry. The LCA patients had severe visual acuity loss early in life, nondetectable electroretinograms (ERGs), and little or no detectable visual fields. Hallmarks of retinal degeneration were present in a wide region, including the macula and midperiphery; there was some apparent peripheral retinal sparing. Cross-sectional imaging showed foveal cone photoreceptor loss with a ring of minimally preserved paracentral photoreceptor nuclear layer. Features of retinal remodeling were present eccentric to the region of detectable photoreceptors. Full-field sensitivity was reduced by at least 2 log units, and chromatic stimuli, by psychophysics and pupillometry, revealed retained but impaired rod function. The RD patient, examined serially over two decades (ages, 45-67 years), retained an ERG in the fifth decade of life with abnormal rod and cone signals; and there was progressive loss of central and peripheral function. AIPL1-LCA, unlike some other forms of LCA with equally severe visual disturbance, shows profound loss of foveal as well as extrafoveal photoreceptors. The more unusual late-onset and slower form of AIPL1 disease may be better suited to gene augmentation therapy and is worthy of detection and further study.

  10. Derivation of neurons with functional properties from adult limbal epithelium: implications in autologous cell therapy for photoreceptor degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xing; Das, Ani V; Bhattacharya, Sumitra; Thoreson, Wallace B; Sierra, Jorge Rodriguez; Mallya, Kavita B; Ahmad, Iqbal

    2008-04-01

    The limbal epithelium (LE), a circular and narrow epithelium that separates cornea from conjunctiva, harbors stem cells/progenitors in its basal layer that regenerate cornea. We have previously demonstrated that cells in the basal LE, when removed from their niche and cultured in reduced bond morphogenetic protein signaling, acquire properties of neural progenitors. Here, we demonstrate that LE-derived neural progenitors generate neurons with functional properties and can be directly differentiated along rod photoreceptor lineage in vitro and in vivo. These observations posit the LE as a potential source of neural progenitors for autologous cell therapy to treat photoreceptor degeneration in age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa.

  11. Transplantation of Photoreceptor Precursors Isolated via a Cell Surface Biomarker Panel From Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Self-Forming Retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakowski, Jorn; Gonzalez-Cordero, Anai; West, Emma L; Han, Ya-Ting; Welby, Emily; Naeem, Arifa; Blackford, Samuel J I; Bainbridge, James W B; Pearson, Rachael A; Ali, Robin R; Sowden, Jane C

    2015-08-01

    Loss of photoreceptors due to retinal degeneration is a major cause of untreatable blindness. Cell replacement therapy, using pluripotent stem cell-derived photoreceptor cells, may be a feasible future treatment. Achieving safe and effective cell replacement is critically dependent on the stringent selection and purification of optimal cells for transplantation. Previously, we demonstrated effective transplantation of post-mitotic photoreceptor precursor cells labelled by fluorescent reporter genes. As genetically labelled cells are not desirable for therapy, here we developed a surface biomarker cell selection strategy for application to complex pluripotent stem cell differentiation cultures. We show that a five cell surface biomarker panel CD73(+)CD24(+)CD133(+)CD47(+)CD15(-) facilitates the isolation of photoreceptor precursors from three-dimensional self-forming retina differentiated from mouse embryonic stem cells. Importantly, stem cell-derived cells isolated using the biomarker panel successfully integrate and mature into new rod photoreceptors in the adult mouse retinae after subretinal transplantation. Conversely, unsorted or negatively selected cells do not give rise to newly integrated rods after transplantation. The biomarker panel also removes detrimental proliferating cells prior to transplantation. Notably, we demonstrate how expression of the biomarker panel is conserved in the human retina and propose that a similar selection strategy will facilitate isolation of human transplantation-competent cells for therapeutic application.

  12. Human neural progenitor cells promote photoreceptor survival in retinal explants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Englund-Johansson, Ulrica; Mohlin, Camilla; Liljekvist-Soltic, Ingela; Ekström, Per; Johansson, Kjell

    2010-02-01

    Different types of progenitor and stem cells have been shown to provide neuroprotection in animal models of photoreceptor degeneration. The present study was conducted to investigate whether human neural progenitor cells (HNPCs) have neuroprotective properties on retinal explants models with calpain- and caspase-3-dependent photoreceptor cell death. In the first experiments, HNPCs in a feeder layer were co-cultured for 6 days either with postnatal rd1 mouse or normal rat retinas. Retinal histological sections were used to determine outer nuclear layer (ONL) thickness, and to detect the number of photoreceptors with labeling for calpain activity, cleaved caspase-3 and TUNEL. The ONL thickness of co-cultured rat and rd1 retinas was found to be almost 10% and 40% thicker, respectively, compared to controls. Cell counts of calpain activity, cleaved caspase-3 and TUNEL labeled photoreceptors in both models revealed a 30-50% decrease when co-cultured with HNPCs. The results represent significant increases of photoreceptor survival in the co-cultured retinas. In the second experiments, for an identification of putative survival factors, or a combination of them, a growth factor profile was performed on conditioned medium. The relative levels of various growth factors were analyzed by densitometric measurements of growth factor array membranes. Following growth factors were identified as most potential survival factors; granulocyte colony stimulating factor (G-CSF), granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GMCSF), insulin-like growth factor II (IGF-II), neurotrophic factor 3 (NT-3), placental growth factor (PIGF), transforming growth factors (TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta2) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF-D). HNPCs protect both against calpain- and caspase-3-dependent photoreceptor cell death in the rd1 mouse and against caspase-3-dependent photoreceptor cell death in normal rat retinas in vitro. The protective effect is possibly achieved by a variety of

  13. Multipotent stem cells isolated from the adult mouse retina are capable of producing functional photoreceptor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Tianqing; Lewallen, Michelle; Chen, Shuyi; Yu, Wei; Zhang, Nian; Xie, Ting

    2013-06-01

    Various stem cell types have been tested for their potential application in treating photoreceptor degenerative diseases, such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Only embryonic stem cells (ESCs) have so far been shown to generate functional photoreceptor cells restoring light response of photoreceptor-deficient mice, but there is still some concern of tumor formation. In this study, we have successfully cultured Nestin(+)Sox2(+)Pax6(+) multipotent retinal stem cells (RSCs) from the adult mouse retina, which are capable of producing functional photoreceptor cells that restore the light response of photoreceptor-deficient rd1 mutant mice following transplantation. After they have been expanded for over 35 passages in the presence of FGF and EGF, the cultured RSCs still maintain stable proliferation and differentiation potential. Under proper differentiation conditions, they can differentiate into all the major retinal cell types found in the adult retina. More importantly, they can efficiently differentiate into photoreceptor cells under optimized differentiation conditions. Following transplantation into the subretinal space of slowly degenerating rd7 mutant eyes, RSC-derived photoreceptor cells integrate into the retina, morphologically resembling endogenous photoreceptors and forming synapases with resident retinal neurons. When transplanted into eyes of photoreceptor-deficient rd1 mutant mice, a RP model, RSC-derived photoreceptors can partially restore light response, indicating that those RSC-derived photoreceptors are functional. Finally, there is no evidence for tumor formation in the photoreceptor-transplanted eyes. Therefore, this study has demonstrated that RSCs isolated from the adult retina have the potential of producing functional photoreceptor cells that can potentially restore lost vision caused by loss of photoreceptor cells in RP and AMD.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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 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.

  15. THE STRUCTURE AND CONCENTRATION OF SOLIDS IN PHOTORECEPTOR CELLS STUDIED BY REFRACTOMETRY AND INTERFERENCE MICROSCOPY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidman, Richard L.

    1957-01-01

    Fragments of freshly obtained retinas of several vertebrate species were studied by refractometry, with reference to the structure of the rods and cones. The findings allowed a reassessment of previous descriptions based mainly on fixed material. The refractometric method was used also to measure the refractice indices and to calculate the concentrations of solids and water in the various cell segments. The main quantitative data were confirmed by interference microscopy. When examined by the method of refractometry the outer segments of freshly prepared retinal rods appear homogeneous. Within a few minutes a single eccentric longitudinal fiber appears, and transverse striations may develop. These changes are attributed to imbibition of water and swelling in structures normally too small for detection by light microscopy. The central "core" of outer segments and the chromophobic disc between outer and inner segments appear to be artifacts resulting from shrinkage during dehydration. The fresh outer segments of cones, and the inner segments of rods and cones also are described and illustrated. The volumes, refractive indices, concentrations of solids, and wet and dry weights of various segments of the photoreceptor cells were tabulated. Rod outer segments of the different species vary more than 100-fold in volume and mass but all have concentrations of solids of 40 to 43 per cent. Cone outer segments contain only about 30 per cent solids. The myoids, paraboloids, and ellipsoids of the inner segments likewise have characteristic refractive indices and concentrations of solids. Some of the limitations and particular virtues of refractometry as a method for quantitative analysis of living cells are discussed in comparison with more conventional biochemical techniques. Also the shapes and refractive indices of the various segments of photoreceptor cells are considered in relation to the absorption and transmission of light. The Stiles-Crawford effect can be accounted

  16. Multipotent stem cells isolated from the adult mouse retina are capable of producing functional photoreceptor cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Tianqing Li; Michelle Lewallen; Shuyi Chen; Wei Yu; Nian Zhang; Ting Xie

    2013-01-01

    Various stem cell types have been tested for their potential application in treating photoreceptor degenerative diseases,such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).Only embryonic stem cells (ESCs) have so far been shown to generate functional photoreceptor cells restoring light response of photoreceptordeficient mice,but there is still some concern of tumor formation.In this study,we have successfully cultured Nestin+Sox2+Pax6+ multipotent retinal stem cells (RSCs) from the adult mouse retina,which are capable of producing functional photoreceptor cells that restore the light response of photoreceptor-deficient rd1 mutant mice following transplantation.After they have been expanded for over 35 passages in the presence of FGF and EGF,the cultured RSCs still maintain stable proliferation and differentiation potential.Under proper differentiation conditions,they can differentiate into all the major retinal cell types found in the adult retina.More importantly,they can efficiently differentiate into photoreceptor cells under optimized differentiation conditions.Following transplantation into the subretinal space of slowly degenerating rd7 mutant eyes,RSC-derived photoreceptor cells integrate into the retina,morphologically resembling endogenous photoreceptors and forming synapases with resident retinal neurons.When transplanted into eyes of photoreceptor-deficient rd1 mutant mice,a RP model,RSC-derived photoreceptors can partially restore light response,indicating that those RSC-derived photoreceptors are functional.Finally,there is no evidence for tumor formation in the photoreceptor-transplanted eyes.Therefore,this study has demonstrated that RSCs isolated from the adult retina have the potential of producing functional photoreceptor cells that can potentially restore lost vision caused by loss of photoreceptor cells in RP and AMD.

  17. Understanding Cone Photoreceptor Cell Death in Achromatopsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  18. Nrl-Cre transgenic mouse mediates loxP recombination in developing rod photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brightman, Diana S; Razafsky, David; Potter, Chloe; Hodzic, Didier; Chen, Shiming

    2016-03-01

    The developing mouse retina is a tractable model for studying neurogenesis and differentiation. Although transgenic Cre mouse lines exist to mediate conditional genetic manipulations in developing mouse retinas, none of them act specifically in early developing rods. For conditional genetic manipulations of developing retinas, a Nrl-Cre mouse line in which the Nrl promoter drives expression of Cre in rod precursors was created. The results showed that Nrl-Cre expression was specific to the retina where it drives rod-specific recombination with a temporal pattern similar to endogenous Nrl expression during retinal development. This Nrl-Cre transgene does not negatively impact retinal structure and function. Taken together, the data suggested that the Nrl-Cre mouse line was a valuable tool to drive Cre-mediated recombination specifically in developing rods. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Overexpression of guanylate cyclase activating protein 2 in rod photoreceptors in vivo leads to morphological changes at the synaptic ribbon

    OpenAIRE

    Natalia López-del Hoyo; Lucrezia Fazioli; Santiago López-Begines; Laura Fernández-Sánchez; Nicolás Cuenca; Jordi Llorens; Pedro de la Villa; Ana Méndez

    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 o...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  1. Functional and molecular characterization of rod-like cells from retinal stem cells derived from the adult ciliary epithelium.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gian Carlo Demontis

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

  2. Pias3 is necessary for dorso-ventral patterning and visual response of retinal cones but is not required for rod photoreceptor differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christie K. Campla

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Protein inhibitor of activated Stat 3 (Pias3 is implicated in guiding specification of rod and cone photoreceptors through post-translational modification of key retinal transcription factors. To investigate its role during retinal development, we deleted exon 2-5 of the mouse Pias3 gene, which resulted in complete loss of the Pias3 protein. Pias3−/− mice did not show any overt phenotype, and retinal lamination appeared normal even at 18 months. We detected reduced photopic b-wave amplitude by electroretinography following green light stimulation of postnatal day (P21 Pias3−/− retina, suggesting a compromised visual response of medium wavelength (M cones. No change was evident in response of short wavelength (S cones or rod photoreceptors until 7 months. Increased S-opsin expression in the M-cone dominant dorsal retina suggested altered distribution of cone photoreceptors. Transcriptome profiling of P21 and 18-month-old Pias3−/− retina revealed aberrant expression of a subset of photoreceptor genes. Our studies demonstrate functional redundancy in SUMOylation-associated transcriptional control mechanisms and identify a specific, though limited, role of Pias3 in modulating spatial patterning and optimal function of cone photoreceptor subtypes in the mouse retina.

  3. Synaptogenesis and synaptic protein localization in the postnatal development of rod bipolar cell dendrites in mouse retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anastassov, Ivan A; Wang, Weiwei; Dunn, Felice A

    2017-05-25

    Retinal responses to photons originate in rod photoreceptors and are transmitted to the ganglion cell output of the retina through the primary rod bipolar pathway. At the first synapse of this pathway, input from multiple rods is pooled into individual rod bipolar cells. This architecture is called convergence. Convergence serves to improve sensitivity of rod vision when photons are sparse. Establishment of convergence depends on the development of a proper complement of dendritic tips and transduction proteins in rod bipolar cells. How the dendrites of rod bipolar cells develop and contact the appropriate number of rods is unknown. To answer this question we visualized individual rod bipolar cells in mouse retina during postnatal development and quantified the number of dendritic tips, as well as the expression of transduction proteins within dendrites. Our findings show that the number of dendritic tips in rod bipolar cells increases monotonically during development. The number of tips at P21, P30, and P82 exceeds the previously reported rod convergence ratios, and the majority of these tips are proximal to a presynaptic rod release site, suggesting more rods provide input to a rod bipolar cell. We also show that dendritic transduction cascade members mGluR6 and TRPM1 appear in tips with different timelines. These finding suggest that (a) rod bipolar cell dendrites elaborate without pruning during development, (b) the convergence ratio between rods and rod bipolar cells may be higher than previously reported, and (c) mGluR6 and TRPM1 are trafficked independently during development. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Transcriptional Regulation of Neural Retina Leucine Zipper (Nrl), a Photoreceptor Cell Fate Determinant*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montana, Cynthia L.; Lawrence, Karen A.; Williams, Natecia L.; Tran, Nicholas M.; Peng, Guang-Hua; Chen, Shiming; Corbo, Joseph C.

    2011-01-01

    The transcription factor neural retina leucine zipper (Nrl) is a critical determinant of rod photoreceptor cell fate and a key regulator of rod differentiation. Nrl−/− rod precursors fail to turn on rod genes and instead differentiate as cones. Furthermore, NRL mutations in humans cause retinitis pigmentosa. Despite the developmental and clinical significance of this gene, little is known about the transcriptional regulation of Nrl itself. In this study, we sought to define the cis- and trans-acting factors responsible for initiation and maintenance of Nrl transcription in the mouse retina. Utilizing a quantitative mouse retinal explant electroporation assay, we discovered a phylogenetically conserved, 30-base pair region immediately upstream of the transcription start site that is required for Nrl promoter activity. This region contains binding sites for the retinal transcription factors CRX, OTX2, and RORβ, and point mutations in these sites completely abolish promoter activity in living retinas. Gel-shift experiments show that CRX, OTX2, and RORβ can bind to the critical region in vitro, whereas ChIP experiments demonstrate binding of CRX and OTX2 to the critical region in vivo. Thus, our results indicate that CRX, OTX2, and RORβ directly regulate Nrl transcription by binding to critical sites within the Nrl promoter. We propose a model in which Nrl expression is primarily initiated by OTX2 and RORβ and later maintained at high levels by CRX and RORβ. PMID:21865162

  5. Transcriptional regulation of neural retina leucine zipper (Nrl), a photoreceptor cell fate determinant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montana, Cynthia L; Lawrence, Karen A; Williams, Natecia L; Tran, Nicholas M; Peng, Guang-Hua; Chen, Shiming; Corbo, Joseph C

    2011-10-21

    The transcription factor neural retina leucine zipper (Nrl) is a critical determinant of rod photoreceptor cell fate and a key regulator of rod differentiation. Nrl(-/-) rod precursors fail to turn on rod genes and instead differentiate as cones. Furthermore, NRL mutations in humans cause retinitis pigmentosa. Despite the developmental and clinical significance of this gene, little is known about the transcriptional regulation of Nrl itself. In this study, we sought to define the cis- and trans-acting factors responsible for initiation and maintenance of Nrl transcription in the mouse retina. Utilizing a quantitative mouse retinal explant electroporation assay, we discovered a phylogenetically conserved, 30-base pair region immediately upstream of the transcription start site that is required for Nrl promoter activity. This region contains binding sites for the retinal transcription factors CRX, OTX2, and RORβ, and point mutations in these sites completely abolish promoter activity in living retinas. Gel-shift experiments show that CRX, OTX2, and RORβ can bind to the critical region in vitro, whereas ChIP experiments demonstrate binding of CRX and OTX2 to the critical region in vivo. Thus, our results indicate that CRX, OTX2, and RORβ directly regulate Nrl transcription by binding to critical sites within the Nrl promoter. We propose a model in which Nrl expression is primarily initiated by OTX2 and RORβ and later maintained at high levels by CRX and RORβ.

  6. The Retinal Pigment Epithelium: a Convenient Source of New Photoreceptor cells?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shu-Zhen Wang

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent success in restoring visual function through photoreceptor replacement in mouse models of photoreceptor degeneration intensifies the need to generate or regenerate photoreceptor cells for the ultimate goal of using cell replacement therapy for blindness caused by photoreceptor degeneration. Current research on deriving new photoreceptors for replacement, as regenerative medicine in general, focuses on the use of embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells to generate transplantable cells. Nonetheless, naturally occurring regeneration, such as wound healing, involves awakening cells at or near a wound site to produce new cells needed to heal the wound. Here we discuss the possibility of tweaking an ocular tissue, the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE, to produce photoreceptor cells in situ in the eye. Unlike the neural retina, the RPE in adult mammals maintains cell proliferation capability. Furthermore, progeny cells from RPE proliferation may differentiate into cells other than RPE. The combination of proliferation and plasticity opens a question of whether they could be channeled by a regulatory gene with pro-photoreceptor activity towards photoreceptor production. Studies using embryonic chick and transgenic mouse showed that indeed photoreceptor-like cells were produced in culture and in vivo in the eye using genedirected reprogramming of RPE cells, supporting the feasibility of using the RPE as a convenient source of new photoreceptor cells for in situ retinal repair without involving cell transplantation.

  7. Small Molecules that Protect Mitochondrial Function from Metabolic Stress Decelerate Loss of Photoreceptor Cells in Murine Retinal Degeneration Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beeson, Craig; Lindsey, Chris; Nasarre, Cecile; Bandyopadhyay, Mausumi; Perron, Nathan; Rohrer, Bärbel

    2016-01-01

    One feature common to many of the pathways implicated in retinal degeneration is increased metabolic stress leading to impaired mitochondrial function. We found that exposure of cells to calcium ionophores or oxidants as metabolic stressors diminish maximal mitochondrial capacity. A library of 50,000 structurally diverse "drug-like" molecules was screened for protection against loss of calcium-induced loss of mitochondrial capacity in 661W rod-derived cells and C6 glioblastomas. Initial protective hits were then tested for protection against IBMX-induced loss of mitochondrial capacity as measured via respirometry. Molecules that protected mitochondria were then evaluated for protection of rod photoreceptor cells in retinal explants from rd1 mice. Two of the molecules attenuated loss of photoreceptor cells in the rd1 model. In the 661W cells, exposure to calcium ionophore or tert-butylhydroperoxide caused mitochondrial fragmentation that was blocked with the both compounds. Our studies have identified molecules that protect mitochondria and attenuate loss of photoreceptors in models of retinal degeneration suggesting that they could be good leads for development of therapeutic drugs for treatment of a wide variety of retinal dystrophies.

  8. Control of the light-regulated current in rod photoreceptors by cyclic GMP, calcium, and l-cis-diltiazem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, J H; Kaupp, U B; MacLeish, P R

    1986-02-01

    The effect of calcium ions on the cGMP-activated current of outer segment membrane was examined by the excised-patch technique. Changes in the extracellular calcium concentration had marked effects on the cGMP-activated current, while changes in intracellular calcium concentration were ineffective. Changes in calcium concentration in the absence of cGMP had little, if any, effect on membrane conductance. These results suggest that both intracellular cGMP and extracellular calcium can directly affect the conductance underlying the light response in rod cells. The pharmacological agent l-cis-diltiazem reversibly inhibited the cGMP-activated current when applied to the intracellular side of an excised patch. When superfused over intact rod cells, l-cis-diltiazem reversibly blocked much of the normal light response. The isomer, d-cis-diltiazem, did not significantly affect either patches or intact rod cells. Thus, the light-regulated conductance has binding sites for both calcium and cGMP that may interact during the normal light response in rod cells and a site specific for l-cis-diltiazem that can be used to identify and further study the conductance mechanism.

  9. Hypoxia increases the yield of photoreceptors differentiating from mouse embryonic stem cells and improves the modeling of retinogenesis in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garita-Hernández, Marcela; Diaz-Corrales, Francisco; Lukovic, Dunja; González-Guede, Irene; Diez-Lloret, Andrea; Valdés-Sánchez, M Lourdes; Massalini, Simone; Erceg, Slaven; Bhattacharya, Shomi S

    2013-05-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a genetically heterogeneous group of diseases together with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), are the leading causes of permanent blindness and are characterized by the progressive dysfunction and death of the light sensing photoreceptors of the retina. Due to the limited regeneration capacity of the mammalian retina, the scientific community has invested significantly in trying to obtain retinal progenitor cells from embryonic stem cells (ESC). These represent an unlimited source of retinal cells, but it has not yet been possible to achieve specific populations, such as photoreceptors, efficiently enough to allow them to be used safely in the future as cell therapy of RP or AMD. In this study, we generated a high yield of photoreceptors from directed differentiation of mouse ESC (mESC) by recapitulating crucial phases of retinal development. We present a new protocol of differentiation, involving hypoxia and taking into account extrinsic and intrinsic cues. These include niche-specific conditions as well as the manipulation of the signaling pathways involved in retinal development. Our results show that hypoxia promotes and improves the differentiation of mESC toward photoreceptors. Different populations of retinal cells are increased in number under the hypoxic conditions applied, such as Crx-positive cells, S-Opsin-positive cells, and double positive cells for Rhodopsin and Recoverin, as shown by immunofluorescence analysis. For the first time, this manuscript reports the high efficiency of differentiation in vivo and the expression of mature rod photoreceptor markers in a large number of differentiated cells, transplanted in the subretinal space of wild-type mice.

  10. Structure and function of the interphotoreceptor matrix surrounding retinal photoreceptor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishikawa, Makoto; Sawada, Yu; Yoshitomi, Takeshi

    2015-04-01

    The interphotoreceptor matrix (IPM) is a highly organized structure with interconnected domains surrounding cone and rod photoreceptor cells and extends throughout the subretinal space. Based on known roles of the extracellular matrix in other tissues, the IPM is thought to have several prominent functions including serving as a receptor for growth factors, regulating retinoid transport, participating in cytoskeletal organization in surrounding cells, and regulation of oxygen and nutrient transport. In addition, a number of studies suggest that the IPM also may play a significant role in the etiology of retinal degenerative disorders. In this review, we describe the present knowledge concerning the structure and function of the IPM under physiological and pathological conditions. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. The adult retinal stem cell is a rare cell in the ciliary epithelium whose progeny can differentiate into photoreceptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian G. Ballios

    2012-02-01

    Self-renewing, multipotential retinal stem cells (RSCs reside in the pigmented ciliary epithelium of the peripheral retina in adult mammals. RSCs can give rise to rhodopsin positive-cells, which can integrate into early postnatal retina, and represent a potentially useful option for cellular therapy. The ability to purify a stem cell population and direct the differentiation toward a particular cell lineage is a challenge facing the application of stem cells in regenerative medicine. Here we use cell sorting to prospectively enrich mouse RSCs based on size, granularity and low expression of P-cadherin and demonstrate that only rare cells with defined properties proliferate to form colonies. We show that clonally-derived mouse and human RSC progeny are multipotent and can differentiate into mature rhodopsin-positive cells with high efficiency using combinations of exogenous culture additives known to influence neural retinal development, including taurine and retinoic acid. This directed RSC differentiation follows the temporal sequence of photoreceptor differentiation in vivo, and the cells exhibit morphology, protein and gene expression consistent with primary cultures of rods in vitro. These results demonstrate that the RSC, an adult stem cell, can be enriched and directed to produce photoreceptors as a first step toward a targeted cell replacement strategy to treat retinal degenerative disease.

  12. Rhodopsin gene expression determines rod outer segment size and rod cell resistance to a dominant-negative neurodegeneration mutant.

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    Brandee A Price

    Full Text Available Two outstanding unknowns in the biology of photoreceptors are the molecular determinants of cell size, which is remarkably uniform among mammalian species, and the mechanisms of rod cell death associated with inherited neurodegenerative blinding diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa. We have addressed both questions by performing an in vivo titration with rhodopsin gene copies in genetically engineered mice that express only normal rhodopsin or an autosomal dominant allele, encoding rhodopsin with a disease-causing P23H substitution. The results reveal that the volume of the rod outer segment is proportional to rhodopsin gene expression; that P23H-rhodopsin, the most common rhodopsin gene disease allele, causes cell death via a dominant-negative mechanism; and that long term survival of rod cells carrying P23H-rhodopsin can be achieved by increasing the levels of wild type rhodopsin. These results point to promising directions in gene therapy for autosomal dominant neurodegenerative diseases caused by dominant-negative mutations.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. Lack of effect of microfilament or microtubule cytoskeleton-disrupting agents on restriction of externalized phosphatidylserine to rod photoreceptor outer segment tips.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruggiero, Linda; Finnemann, Silvia C

    2014-01-01

    In the mammalian retina, life-long renewal of rod photoreceptor outer segments involves circadian shedding of distal outer segment tips and their prompt phagocytosis by the adjacent retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) every morning after light onset. Failure of this process causes retinal dystrophy in animal models and its decline likely contributes to retinal aging and some forms of degeneration of the human retina. We previously found that surface exposure of the membrane phospholipid phosphatidylserine (PS) is restricted to outer segment tips with discrete boundaries in mouse retina and that both frequency and length of tips exposing PS peak after light onset. Here, we sought to test mechanisms photoreceptors use to restrict PS specifically to their outer segment tips. To this end, we tested whether nocodazole or cytochalasin D, perturbing microtubule or F-actin microfilament cytoskeleton, respectively, affect localization of externalized PS at outer segment tips. Fluorescence imaging of PS exposed by rods in freshly dissected, live mouse retina showed normal PS demarcation of outer segment tips regardless of drug treatment. These results suggest that the mechanism that restricts externalized PS to rod tips is independent of F-actin and microtubule cytoskeletal systems.

  16. Usherin is required for maintenance of retinal photoreceptors and normal development of cochlear hair cells

    OpenAIRE

    2007-01-01

    Usher syndrome type IIA (USH2A), characterized by progressive photoreceptor degeneration and congenital moderate hearing loss, is the most common subtype of Usher syndrome. In this article, we show that the USH2A protein, also known as usherin, is an exceptionally large (≈600-kDa) matrix protein expressed specifically in retinal photoreceptors and developing cochlear hair cells. In mammalian photoreceptors, usherin is localized to a spatially restricted membrane microdomain at the apical inne...

  17. Antagonistic functions of two stardust isoforms in Drosophila photoreceptor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulgakova, Natalia A; Rentsch, Michaela; Knust, Elisabeth

    2010-11-15

    Membrane-associated guanylate kinases (MAGUKs) are scaffolding proteins that organize supramolecular protein complexes, thereby partitioning the plasma membrane into spatially and functionally distinct subdomains. Their modular organization is ideally suited to organize protein complexes with cell type- or stage-specific composition, or both. Often more than one MAGUK isoform is expressed by one gene in the same cell, yet very little is known about their individual in vivo functions. Here, we show that two isoforms of Drosophila stardust, Sdt-H (formerly called Sdt-B2) and Sdt-D, which differ in their N terminus, are expressed in adult photoreceptors. Both isoforms associate with Crumbs and PATJ, constituents of the conserved Crumbs-Stardust complex. However, they form distinct complexes, localized at the stalk, a restricted region of the apical plasma membrane. Strikingly, Sdt-H and Sdt-D have antagonistic functions. While Sdt-H overexpression increases stalk membrane length and prevents light-dependent retinal degeneration, Sdt-D overexpression reduces stalk length and enhances light-dependent retinal degeneration. These results suggest that a fine-tuned balance of different Crumbs complexes regulates photoreceptor homeostasis.

  18. Electrical coupling of neuro-ommatidial photoreceptor cells in the blowfly

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hateren, J.H. van

    1986-01-01

    A new method of microstimulation of the blowfly eye using corneal neutralization was applied to the 6 peripheral photoreceptor cells (R1-R6) connected to one neuro-ommatidium (and thus looking into the same direction), whilst the receptor potential of a dark-adapted photoreceptor cell was recorded b

  19. In vitro transdifferentiation of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells to photoreceptor-like cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yukari Komuta

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Direct reprogramming is a promising, simple and low-cost approach to generate target cells from somatic cells without using induced pluripotent stem cells. Recently, peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs have attracted considerable attention as a somatic cell source for reprogramming. As a cell source, PBMCs have an advantage over dermal fibroblasts with respect to the ease of collecting tissues. Based on our studies involving generation of photosensitive photoreceptor cells from human iris cells and human dermal fibroblasts by transduction of photoreceptor-related transcription factors via retrovirus vectors, we transduced these transcription factors into PBMCs via Sendai virus vectors. We found that retinal disease-related genes were efficiently detected in CRX-transduced cells, most of which are crucial to photoreceptor functions. In functional studies, a light-induced inward current was detected in some CRX-transduced cells. Moreover, by modification of the culture conditions including additional transduction of RAX1 and NEUROD1, we found a greater variety of retinal disease-related genes than that observed in CRX-transduced PBMCs. These data suggest that CRX acts as a master control gene for reprogramming PBMCs into photoreceptor-like cells and that our induced photoreceptor-like cells might contribute to individualized drug screening and disease modeling of inherited retinal degeneration.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Cloning and characterization of mr-s, a novel SAM domain protein, predominantly expressed in retinal photoreceptor cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koike Chieko

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sterile alpha motif (SAM domains are ~70 residues long and have been reported as common protein-protein interaction modules. This domain is found in a large number of proteins, including Polycomb group (PcG proteins and ETS family transcription factors. In this work, we report the cloning and functional characterization of a novel SAM domain-containing protein, which is predominantly expressed in retinal photoreceptors and the pineal gland and is designated mouse mr-s (major retinal SAM domain protein. Results mr-s is evolutionarily conserved from zebrafish through human, organisms through which the mechanism of photoreceptor development is also highly conserved. Phylogenetic analysis suggests that the SAM domain of mr-s is most closely related to a mouse polyhomeotic (ph ortholog, Mph1/Rae28, which is known as an epigenetic molecule involved in chromatin modifications. These findings provide the possibility that mr-s may play a critical role by regulating gene expression in photoreceptor development. mr-s is preferentially expressed in the photoreceptors at postnatal day 3–6 (P3-6, when photoreceptors undergo terminal differentiation, and in the adult pineal gland. Transcription of mr-s is directly regulated by the cone-rod homeodomain protein Crx. Immunoprecipitation assay showed that the mr-s protein self-associates mainly through the SAM domain-containing region as well as ph. The mr-s protein localizes mainly in the nucleus, when mr-s is overexpressed in HEK293T cells. Moreover, in the luciferase assays, we found that mr-s protein fused to GAL4 DNA-binding domain functions as a transcriptional repressor. We revealed that the repression activity of mr-s is not due to a homophilic interaction through its SAM domain but to the C-terminal region. Conclusion We identified a novel gene, mr-s, which is predominantly expressed in retinal photoreceptors and pineal gland. Based on its expression pattern and biochemical analysis

  2. Generation, purification and transplantation of photoreceptors derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deepak A Lamba

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Inherited and acquired retinal degenerations are frequent causes of visual impairment and photoreceptor cell replacement therapy may restore visual function to these individuals. To provide a source of new retinal neurons for cell based therapies, we developed methods to derive retinal progenitors from human ES cells. METHODOLOGY/PHYSICAL FINDINGS: In this report we have used a similar method to direct induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS from human fibroblasts to a retinal progenitor fate, competent to generate photoreceptors. We also found we could purify the photoreceptors derived from the iPS cells using fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS after labeling photoreceptors with a lentivirus driving GFP from the IRBP cis-regulatory sequences. Moreover, we found that when we transplanted the FACS purified iPSC derived photoreceptors, they were able to integrate into a normal mouse retina and express photoreceptor markers. CONCLUSIONS: This report provides evidence that enriched populations of human photoreceptors can be derived from iPS cells.

  3. Anatomy of the Hesse photoreceptor cell axonal system in the central nervous system of amphioxus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Antonio; Becerra, Manuela; Manso, María Jesús; Sherwood, Nancy M; Anadón, Ramón

    2006-01-01

    The present study reports the organization of the Hesse cell axonal system in the central nervous system of the amphioxus, with the use of a polyclonal antiserum raised against lamprey gonadotropin-releasing hormone-I (GnRH-I). In the spinal cord, the rhabdomeric photoreceptor cells of the bicellular organs were well labeled with this antibody. These cells sent smooth, straight, lateral processes that bent and became beaded as they passed ventrally and crossed to the contralateral side of the cord. There, the processes of several cells aggregated to give rise to a longitudinal fiber bundle. Beaded collaterals of these processes were directed to ventral neuropil and did not appear to contact giant Rohde cell axons. The crossed projections of the Hesse photoreceptors are compared with those of vertebrate retinal ganglion cells. Other antisera raised against GnRH weakly labeled rhabdomeric photoreceptors located dorsally in the brain, the Joseph cells. The finding that GnRH antibodies label amphioxus photoreceptor cells and axons is not definitive proof that the photoreceptors contain GnRH. Regardless of whether the antibody recognizes amphioxus GnRH, which has not yet been identified by structure, the antibody has revealed the processes of the Hesse photoreceptor cells.

  4. Retinal bipolar cells: temporal filtering of signals from cone photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkhardt, Dwight A; Fahey, Patrick K; Sikora, Michael A

    2007-01-01

    The temporal dynamics of the response of neurons in the outer retina were investigated by intracellular recording from cones, bipolar, and horizontal cells in the intact, light-adapted retina of the tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum), with special emphasis on comparing the two major classes of bipolars cells, the ON depolarizing bipolars (Bd) and the OFF hyperpolarizing bipolars (Bh). Transfer functions were computed from impulse responses evoked by a brief light flash on a steady background of 20 cd/m(2). Phase delays ranged from about 89 ms for cones to 170 ms for Bd cells, yielding delays relative to that of cones of about 49 ms for Bh cells and 81 ms for Bd cells. The difference between Bd and Bh cells, which may be due to a delay introduced by the second messenger G-protein pathway unique to Bd cells, was further quantified by latency measurements and responses to white noise. The amplitude transfer functions of the outer retinal neurons varied with light adaptation in qualitative agreement with results for other vertebrates and human vision. The transfer functions at 20 cd/m(2) were predominantly low pass with 10-fold attenuation at about 13, 14, 9.1, and 7.7 Hz for cones, horizontal, Bh, and Bd cells, respectively. The transfer function from the cone voltage to the bipolar voltage response, as computed from the above measurements, was low pass and approximated by a cascade of three low pass RC filters ("leaky integrators"). These results for cone-->bipolar transmission are surprisingly similar to recent results for rod-->bipolar transmission in salamander slice preparations. These and other findings suggest that the rate of vesicle replenishment rather than the rate of release may be a common factor shaping synaptic signal transmission from rods and cones to bipolar cells.

  5. Carbenoxolone blocks the light-evoked rise in intracellular calcium in isolated melanopsin ganglion cell photoreceptors.

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    Jayne R Bramley

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Retinal ganglion cells expressing the photopigment melanopsin are intrinsically photosensitive (ipRGCs. These ganglion cell photoreceptors send axons to several central targets involved in a variety of functions. Within the retina ipRGCs provide excitatory drive to dopaminergic amacrine cells via glutamatergic signals and ipRGCs are coupled to wide-field GABAergic amacrine cells via gap junctions. However, the extent to which ipRGCs are coupled to other retinal neurons in the ganglion cell layer via gap junctions is unclear. Carbenoxolone, a widely employed gap junction inhibitor, greatly reduces the number of retinal neurons exhibiting non-rod, non-cone mediated light-evoked Ca(2+ signals suggesting extensive intercellular coupling between ipRGCs and non-ipRGCs in the ganglion cell layer. However, carbenoxolone may directly inhibit light-evoked Ca(2+ signals in ipRGCs independent of gap junction blockade. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To test the possibility that carbenoxolone directly inhibits light-evoked Ca(2+ responses in ipRGCs, the light-evoked rise in intracellular Ca(2+ ([Ca(2+](i was examined using fura-2 imaging in isolated rat ipRGCs maintained in short-term culture in the absence and presence of carbenoxolone. Carbenoxolone at 50 and 100 µM concentrations completely abolished the light-evoked rise in [Ca(2+](i in isolated ipRGCs. Recovery from carbenoxolone inhibition was variable. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We demonstrate that the light-evoked rise in [Ca(2+](i in isolated mammalian ganglion cell photoreceptors is inhibited by carbenoxolone. Since the light-evoked increase in [Ca(2+](i in isolated ipRGCs is almost entirely due to Ca(2+ entry via L-type voltage-gated calcium channels and carbenoxolone does not inhibit light-evoked action potential firing in ipRGCs in situ, carbenoxolone may block the light-evoked increase in [Ca(2+](i in ipRGCs by blocking L-type voltage-gated Ca(2+ channels. The ability of

  6. Contribution of calpains to photoreceptor cell death in N-methyl-N-nitrosourea-treated rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oka, Takayuki; Nakajima, Takeshi; Tamada, Yoshiyuki; Shearer, Thomas R; Azuma, Mitsuyoshi

    2007-03-01

    The purpose of the present study was to determine if proteolysis by the calcium-dependent enzyme calpains (EC 3.4.22.17) contributed to retinal cell death in a rat model of photoreceptor degeneration induced by intraperitoneal injection of N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU). Retinal degeneration was evaluated by H&E staining, and cell death was determined by TUNEL assay. Total calcium in retina was measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Activation of calpains was determined by casein zymography and immunoblotting. Proteolysis of alpha-spectrin and p35 (regulator of Cdk5) were evaluated by immunoblotting. Calpain inhibitor SNJ-1945 was orally administrated to MNU-treated rats to test drug efficacy. MNU decreased the thickness of photoreceptor cell layer, composed of the outer nuclear layer (ONL) and outer segment (OS). Numerous cells in the ONL showed positive TUNEL staining. Total calcium was increased in retina after MNU. Activation of calpains and calpain-specific proteolysis of alpha-spectrin were observed after MNU injection. Oral administration of SNJ-1945 to MNU-treated rats showed a significant protective effect against photoreceptor cell loss, confirming involvement of calpains in photoreceptor degeneration. Conversion of p35 to p25 was well correlated with calpain activation, suggesting prolonged activation of Cdk5/p25 as a possible downstream mechanism for MNU-induced photoreceptor cell death. SNJ-1945 reduced photoreceptor cells death, even though MNU is one of the most severe models of photoreceptor cell degeneration. Oral calpain inhibitor SNJ-1945 may be a candidate for testing as a medication against retinal degeneration in retinitis pigmentosa.

  7. Effects of Ranibizumab and Aflibercept on Human Müller Cells and Photoreceptors under Stress Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Weiyong; Yau, Belinda; Lee, So-Ra; Zhu, Ling; Yam, Michelle; Gillies, Mark C.

    2017-01-01

    Anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) therapy has revolutionized the treatment of retinal vascular diseases. However, constitutive VEGF also acts as a trophic factor on retinal non-vascular cells. We have studied the effects of aflibercept and ranibizumab on human Müller cells and photoreceptors exposed to starvation media containing various concentrations of glucose, with or without CoCl2-induced hypoxia. Cell survival was assessed by calcein-AM cell viability assays. Expression of heat shock proteins (Hsp) and redox proteins thioredoxin 1 and 2 (TRX1, TRX2) was studied by Western blots. The production of neurotrophic factors in Müller cells and interphotoreceptor retinoid-binding protein (IRBP) in photoreceptors was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Aflibercept and ranibizumab did not affect the viability of both types of cells. Neither aflibercept nor ranibizumab affected the production of neurotrophic factors or expression of Hsp60 and Hsp90 in Müller cells. However, aflibercept but not ranibizumab affected the expression of Hsp60, Hsp9, TRX1 and TRX2 in photoreceptors. Aflibercept and ranibizumab both inhibited the production of IRBP in photoreceptors, aflibercept more so than ranibizumab. Our data indicates that the potential influence of aflibercept and ranibizumab on photoreceptors should be specifically monitored in clinical studies. PMID:28257068

  8. Nrf2 protects photoreceptor cells from photo-oxidative stress induced by blue light.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Wan-Ju; Wu, Caiying; Xu, Zhenhua; Kuse, Yoshiki; Hara, Hideaki; Duh, Elia J

    2017-01-01

    Oxidative stress plays a key role in age-related macular degeneration and hereditary retinal degenerations. Light damage in rodents has been used extensively to model oxidative stress-induced photoreceptor degeneration, and photo-oxidative injury from blue light is particularly damaging to photoreceptors. The endogenous factors protecting photoreceptors from oxidative stress, including photo-oxidative stress, are continuing to be elucidated. In this study, we evaluated the effect of blue light exposure on photoreceptors and its relationship to Nrf2 using cultured murine photoreceptor (661W) cells. 661W cells were exposed to blue light at 2500 lux. Exposure to blue light for 6-24 h resulted in a significant increase in intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) and death of 661W cells in a time-dependent fashion. Blue light exposure resulted in activation of Nrf2, as indicated by an increase in nuclear translocation of Nrf2. This was associated with a significant induction of expression of Nrf2 as well as an array of Nrf2 target genes, including antioxidant genes, as indicated by quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR). In order to determine the functional role of Nrf2, siRNA-mediated knockdown studies were performed. Nrf2-knockdown in 661W cells resulted in significant exacerbation of blue light-induced reactive oxygen species levels as well as cell death. Taken together, these findings indicate that Nrf2 is an important endogenous protective factor against oxidative stress in photoreceptor cells. This suggests that drugs targeting Nrf2 could be considered as a neuroprotective strategy for photoreceptors in AMD and other retinal conditions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Controllable single photon stimulation of retinal rod cells

    CERN Document Server

    Phan, Nam Mai; Bessarab, Dmitri A; Krivitsky, Leonid A

    2013-01-01

    Retinal rod cells are commonly assumed to be sensitive to single photons [1, 2, 3]. Light sources used in prior experiments exhibit unavoidable fluctuations in the number of emitted photons [4]. This leaves doubt about the exact number of photons used to stimulate the rod cell. In this letter, we interface rod cells of Xenopus laevis with a light source based on Spontaneous Parametric Down Conversion (SPDC) [5], which provides one photon at a time. Precise control of generation of single photons and directional delivery enables us to provide unambiguous proof of single photon sensitivity of rod cells without relying on the statistical assumptions. Quantum correlations between single photons in the SPDC enable us to determine quantum efficiency of the rod cell without pre-calibrated reference detectors [6, 7, 8]. These results provide the path for exploiting resources offered by quantum optics in generation and manipulation of light in visual studies. From a more general perspective, this method offers the ult...

  10. Clinical characteristics of rod and cone photoreceptor dystrophies in patients with mutations in the C8orf37 gene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huet, R.A.C. van; Estrada-Cuzcano, A.; Banin, E.; Rotenstreich, Y.; Hipp, S.; Kohl, S.; Hoyng, C.B.; Hollander, A.I. den; Collin, R.W.J.; Klevering, B.J.

    2013-01-01

    PURPOSE: To provide the clinical features in patients with retinal disease caused by C8orf37 gene mutations. METHODS: Eight patients--four diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and four with cone-rod dystrophy (CRD), carrying causal C8orf37 mutations--were clinically evaluated, including

  11. Gene therapy into photoreceptors and Müller glial cells restores retinal structure and function in CRB1 retinitis pigmentosa mouse models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. Optical properties of photoreceptor and retinal pigment epithelium cells investigated with adaptive optics optical coherence tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhuolin

    Human vision starts when photoreceptors collect and respond to light. Photoreceptors do not function in isolation though, but share close interdependence with neighboring photoreceptors and underlying retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells. These cellular interactions are essential for normal function of the photoreceptor-RPE complex, but methods to assess these in the living human eye are limited. One approach that has gained increased promise is high-resolution retinal imaging that has undergone tremendous technological advances over the last two decades to probe the living retina at the cellular level. Pivotal in these advances has been adaptive optics (AO) and optical coherence tomography (OCT) that together allow unprecedented spatial resolution of retinal structures in all three dimensions. Using these high-resolution systems, cone photoreceptor are now routinely imaged in healthy and diseased retina enabling fundamental structural properties of cones to be studied such as cell spacing, packing arrangement, and alignment. Other important cell properties, however, have remained elusive to investigation as even better imaging performance is required and thus has resulted in an incomplete understanding of how cells in the photoreceptor-RPE complex interact with light. To address this technical bottleneck, we expanded the imaging capability of AO-OCT to detect and quantify more accurately and completely the optical properties of cone photoreceptor and RPE cells at the cellular level in the living human retina. The first objective of this thesis was development of a new AO-OCT method that is more precise and sensitive, thus enabling a more detailed view of the 3D optical signature of the photoreceptor-RPE complex than was previously possible (Chapter 2). Using this new system, the second objective was quantifying the waveguide properties of individual cone photoreceptor inner and outer segments across the macula (Chapter 3). The third objective extended the AO

  13. Cobalamin C Deficiency Shows a Rapidly Progressing Maculopathy With Severe Photoreceptor and Ganglion Cell Loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonafede, Lucas; Ficicioglu, Can H; Serrano, Leona; Han, Grace; Morgan, Jessica I W; Mills, Monte D; Forbes, Brian J; Davidson, Stefanie L; Binenbaum, Gil; Kaplan, Paige B; Nichols, Charles W; Verloo, Patrick; Leroy, Bart P; Maguire, Albert M; Aleman, Tomas S

    2015-12-01

    To describe in detail the retinal structure and function of a group of patients with cobalamin C (cblC) disease. Patients (n = 11, age 4 months to 15 years) with cblC disease (9/11, early onset) diagnosed by newborn screening underwent complete ophthalmic examinations, fundus photography, near-infrared reflectance imaging, and spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT). Electroretinograms (ERGs) were performed in a subset of patients. Patients carried homozygous or compound heterozygote mutations in the methylmalonic aciduria and homocystinuria type C (MMACHC) gene. Late-onset patients had a normal exam. All early-onset patients showed a maculopathy; older subjects had a retina-wide degeneration (n = 4; >7 years of age). In general, retinal changes were first observed before 1 year of age and progressed within months to a well-established maculopathy. Pseudocolobomas were documented in three patients. Measurable visual acuities ranged from 20/200 to 20/540. Nystagmus was present in 8/11 patients; 5/6 patients had normal ERGs; 1/6 had reduced rod-mediated responses. Spectral-domain OCT showed macular thinning, with severe ganglion cell layer (GCL) and outer nuclear layer (ONL) loss. Inner retinal thickening was observed in areas of total GCL/ONL loss. A normal lamination pattern in the peripapillary nasal retina was often seen despite severe central and/or retina-wide disease. Patients with early-onset cblC and MMACHC mutations showed an early-onset, unusually fast-progressing maculopathy with severe central ONL and GCL loss. An abnormally thickened inner retina supports a remodeling response to both photoreceptor and ganglion cell degeneration and/or an interference with normal development in early-onset cblC.

  14. Migration, integration and maturation of photoreceptor precursors following transplantation in the mouse retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warre-Cornish, Katherine; Barber, Amanda C; Sowden, Jane C; Ali, Robin R; Pearson, Rachael A

    2014-05-01

    Retinal degeneration leading to loss of photoreceptors is a major cause of untreatable blindness. Recent research has yielded definitive evidence for restoration of vision following the transplantation of rod photoreceptors in murine models of blindness, while advances in stem cell biology have enabled the generation of transplantable photoreceptors from embryonic stem cells. Importantly, the amount of visual function restored is dependent upon the number of photoreceptors that migrate correctly into the recipient retina. The developmental stage of the donor cells is important for their ability to migrate; they must be immature photoreceptor precursors. Little is known about how and when donor cell migration, integration, and maturation occurs. Here, we have performed a comprehensive histological analysis of the 6-week period following rod transplantation in mice. Donor cells migrate predominately as single entities during the first week undergoing a stereotyped sequence of morphological changes in their translocation from the site of transplantation, through the interphotoreceptor matrix and into the recipient retina. This includes initial polarization toward the outer nuclear layer (ONL), followed by formation of an apical attachment and rudimentary segment during migration into the ONL. Strikingly, acquisition of a nuclear architecture typical of mature rods was accelerated compared with normal development and a feature of migrating cells. Once within the ONL, precursors formed synaptic-like structures and outer segments in accordance with normal maturation. The restoration of visual function mediated by transplanted photoreceptors correlated with the later expression of rod α-transducin, achieving maximal function by 5 weeks.

  15. Predicted molecular signaling guiding photoreceptor cell migration following transplantation into damaged retina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unachukwu, Uchenna John; Warren, Alice; Li, Ze; Mishra, Shawn; Zhou, Jing; Sauane, Moira; Lim, Hyungsik; Vazquez, Maribel; Redenti, Stephen

    2016-03-01

    To replace photoreceptors lost to disease or trauma and restore vision, laboratories around the world are investigating photoreceptor replacement strategies using subretinal transplantation of photoreceptor precursor cells (PPCs) and retinal progenitor cells (RPCs). Significant obstacles to advancement of photoreceptor cell-replacement include low migration rates of transplanted cells into host retina and an absence of data describing chemotactic signaling guiding migration of transplanted cells in the damaged retinal microenvironment. To elucidate chemotactic signaling guiding transplanted cell migration, bioinformatics modeling of PPC transplantation into light-damaged retina was performed. The bioinformatics modeling analyzed whole-genome expression data and matched PPC chemotactic cell-surface receptors to cognate ligands expressed in the light-damaged retinal microenvironment. A library of significantly predicted chemotactic ligand-receptor pairs, as well as downstream signaling networks was generated. PPC and RPC migration in microfluidic ligand gradients were analyzed using a highly predicted ligand-receptor pair, SDF-1α - CXCR4, and both PPCs and RPCs exhibited significant chemotaxis. This work present a systems level model and begins to elucidate molecular mechanisms involved in PPC and RPC migration within the damaged retinal microenvironment.

  16. Induction of Neuronal Morphology in the 661W Cone Photoreceptor Cell Line with Staurosporine.

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    Alex F Thompson

    Full Text Available RGC-5 cells undergo differentiation into a neuronal phenotype with low concentrations of staurosporine. Although the RGC-5 cell line was initially thought to be of retinal ganglion cell origin, recent evidence suggests that the RGC-5 line could have been the result of contamination with 661W mouse cone photoreceptor cells. This raised the possibility that a cone photoreceptor cell line could be multipotent and could be differentiated to a neuronal phenotype.661W and RGC-5 cells, non-neuronal retinal astrocytes, retinal endothelial cells, retinal pericytes, M21 melanoma cells, K562 chronic myelogenous leukemia cells, and Daudi Burkitt lymphoma cells, were differentiated with staurosporine. The resulting morphology was quantitated using NeuronJ with respect to neurite counts and topology.Treatment with staurosporine induced similar-appearing morphological differentiation in both 661W and RGC-5 cells. The following measures were not significantly different between 661W and RGC-5 cells: number of neurites per cell, total neurite field length, number of neurite branch points, and cell viability. Neuronal-like differentiation was not observed in the other cell lines tested.661W and RGC-5 cells have virtually identical and distinctive morphology when differentiated with low concentrations of staurosporine. This result demonstrates that a retinal neuronal precursor cell with cone photoreceptor lineage can be differentiated to express a neuronal morphology.

  17. The Drosophila DOCK family protein sponge is involved in differentiation of R7 photoreceptor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eguchi, Koichi; Yoshioka, Yasuhide; Yoshida, Hideki; Morishita, Kazushige; Miyata, Seiji; Hiai, Hiroshi; Yamaguchi, Masamitsu

    2013-08-15

    The Drosophila sponge (spg)/CG31048 gene belongs to the dedicator of cytokinesis (DOCK) family genes that are conserved in a wide variety of species. DOCK family members are known as DOCK1-DOCK11 in mammals. Although DOCK1 and DOCK2 involve neurite elongation and immunocyte differentiation, respectively, the functions of other DOCK family members are not fully understood. Spg is a Drosophila homolog of mammalian DOCK3 and DOCK4. Specific knockdown of spg by the GMR-GAL4 driver in eye imaginal discs induced abnormal eye morphology in adults. To mark the photoreceptor cells in eye imaginal discs, we used a set of enhancer trap strains that express lacZ in various sets of photoreceptor cells. Immunostaining with anti-Spg antibodies and anti-lacZ antibodies revealed that Spg is localized mainly in R7 photoreceptor cells. Knockdown of spg by the GMR-GAL4 driver reduced signals of R7 photoreceptor cells, suggesting involvement of Spg in R7 cell differentiation. Furthermore, immunostaining with anti-dpERK antibodies showed the level of activated ERK signal was reduced extensively by knockdown of spg in eye discs, and both the defects in eye morphology and dpERK signals were rescued by over-expression of the Drosophila raf gene, a component of the ERK signaling pathway. Furthermore, the Duolink in situ Proximity Ligation Assay method detected interaction signals between Spg and Rap1 in and around the plasma membrane of the eye disc cells. Together, these results indicate Spg positively regulates the ERK pathway that is required for R7 photoreceptor cell differentiation and the regulation is mediated by interaction with Rap1 during development of the compound eye. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Calcium transients in the rhabdomeres of dark- and light-adapted fly photoreceptor cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oberwinkler, J; Stavenga, DG

    2000-01-01

    The light response of fly photoreceptor cells is modulated by changes in free Ca2+ concentration. Fly phototransduction and most processes regulating it take place in or very close to the rhabdomere. We therefore measured the kinetics and the absolute values of the free Ca2+ concentration in the

  19. The Hippo pathway controls a switch between retinal progenitor cell proliferation and photoreceptor cell differentiation in zebrafish.

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    Asaoka, Yoichi; Hata, Shoji; Namae, Misako; Furutani-Seiki, Makoto; Nishina, Hiroshi

    2014-01-01

    The precise regulation of numbers and types of neurons through control of cell cycle exit and terminal differentiation is an essential aspect of neurogenesis. The Hippo signaling pathway has recently been identified as playing a crucial role in promoting cell cycle exit and terminal differentiation in multiple types of stem cells, including in retinal progenitor cells. When Hippo signaling is activated, the core Mst1/2 kinases activate the Lats1/2 kinases, which in turn phosphorylate and inhibit the transcriptional cofactor Yap. During mouse retinogenesis, overexpression of Yap prolongs progenitor cell proliferation, whereas inhibition of Yap decreases this proliferation and promotes retinal cell differentiation. However, to date, it remains unknown how the Hippo pathway affects the differentiation of distinct neuronal cell types such as photoreceptor cells. In this study, we investigated whether Hippo signaling regulates retinogenesis during early zebrafish development. Knockdown of zebrafish mst2 induced early embryonic defects, including altered retinal pigmentation and morphogenesis. Similar abnormal retinal phenotypes were observed in zebrafish embryos injected with a constitutively active form of yap [(yap (5SA)]. Loss of Yap's TEAD-binding domain, two WW domains, or transcription activation domain attenuated the retinal abnormalities induced by yap (5SA), indicating that all of these domains contribute to normal retinal development. Remarkably, yap (5SA)-expressing zebrafish embryos displayed decreased expression of transcription factors such as otx5 and crx, which orchestrate photoreceptor cell differentiation by activating the expression of rhodopsin and other photoreceptor cell genes. Co-immunoprecipitation experiments revealed that Rx1 is a novel interacting partner of Yap that regulates photoreceptor cell differentiation. Our results suggest that Yap suppresses the differentiation of photoreceptor cells from retinal progenitor cells by repressing Rx1

  20. The Hippo pathway controls a switch between retinal progenitor cell proliferation and photoreceptor cell differentiation in zebrafish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoichi Asaoka

    Full Text Available The precise regulation of numbers and types of neurons through control of cell cycle exit and terminal differentiation is an essential aspect of neurogenesis. The Hippo signaling pathway has recently been identified as playing a crucial role in promoting cell cycle exit and terminal differentiation in multiple types of stem cells, including in retinal progenitor cells. When Hippo signaling is activated, the core Mst1/2 kinases activate the Lats1/2 kinases, which in turn phosphorylate and inhibit the transcriptional cofactor Yap. During mouse retinogenesis, overexpression of Yap prolongs progenitor cell proliferation, whereas inhibition of Yap decreases this proliferation and promotes retinal cell differentiation. However, to date, it remains unknown how the Hippo pathway affects the differentiation of distinct neuronal cell types such as photoreceptor cells. In this study, we investigated whether Hippo signaling regulates retinogenesis during early zebrafish development. Knockdown of zebrafish mst2 induced early embryonic defects, including altered retinal pigmentation and morphogenesis. Similar abnormal retinal phenotypes were observed in zebrafish embryos injected with a constitutively active form of yap [(yap (5SA]. Loss of Yap's TEAD-binding domain, two WW domains, or transcription activation domain attenuated the retinal abnormalities induced by yap (5SA, indicating that all of these domains contribute to normal retinal development. Remarkably, yap (5SA-expressing zebrafish embryos displayed decreased expression of transcription factors such as otx5 and crx, which orchestrate photoreceptor cell differentiation by activating the expression of rhodopsin and other photoreceptor cell genes. Co-immunoprecipitation experiments revealed that Rx1 is a novel interacting partner of Yap that regulates photoreceptor cell differentiation. Our results suggest that Yap suppresses the differentiation of photoreceptor cells from retinal progenitor cells by

  1. p75(NTR) antagonists attenuate photoreceptor cell loss in murine models of retinitis pigmentosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platón-Corchado, María; Barcelona, Pablo F; Jmaeff, Sean; Marchena, Miguel; Hernández-Pinto, Alberto M; Hernández-Sánchez, Catalina; Saragovi, H Uri; de la Rosa, Enrique J

    2017-07-13

    ProNGF signaling through p75(NTR) has been associated with neurodegenerative disorders. Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) comprises a group of inherited retinal dystrophies that causes progressive photoreceptor cell degeneration and death, at a rate dependent on the genetic mutation. There are more than 300 mutations causing RP, and this is a challenge to therapy. Our study was designed to explore a common mechanism for p75(NTR) in the progression of RP, and assess its potential value as a therapeutic target. The proNGF/p75(NTR) system is present in the dystrophic retina of the rd10 RP mouse model. Compared with wild-type (WT) retina, the levels of unprocessed proNGF were increased in the rd10 retina at early degenerative stages, before the peak of photoreceptor cell death. Conversely, processed NGF levels were similar in rd10 and WT retinas. ProNGF remained elevated throughout the period of photoreceptor cell loss, correlating with increased expression of α2-macroglobulin, an inhibitor of proNGF processing. The neuroprotective effect of blocking p75(NTR) was assessed in organotypic retinal cultures from rd10 and RhoP mouse models. Retinal explants treated with p75(NTR) antagonists showed significantly reduced photoreceptor cell death, as determined by the terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) assay and by preservation of the thickness of the outer nuclear layer (ONL), where photoreceptor nuclei are located. This effect was accompanied by decreased retinal-reactive gliosis and reduced TNFα secretion. Use of p75(NTR) antagonist THX-B (1,3-diisopropyl-1-[2-(1,3-dimethyl-2,6-dioxo-1,2,3,6-tetrahydro-purin-7-yl)-acetyl]-urea) in vivo in the rd10 and RhoP mouse models, by a single intravitreal or subconjunctival injection, afforded neuroprotection to photoreceptor cells, with preservation of the ONL. This study demonstrates a role of the p75(NTR)/proNGF axis in the progression of RP, and validates these proteins as therapeutic targets

  2. A positive feedback synapse from retinal horizontal cells to cone photoreceptors.

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    Skyler L Jackman

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Cone photoreceptors and horizontal cells (HCs have a reciprocal synapse that underlies lateral inhibition and establishes the antagonistic center-surround organization of the visual system. Cones transmit to HCs through an excitatory synapse and HCs feed back to cones through an inhibitory synapse. Here we report that HCs also transmit to cone terminals a positive feedback signal that elevates intracellular Ca(2+ and accelerates neurotransmitter release. Positive and negative feedback are both initiated by AMPA receptors on HCs, but positive feedback appears to be mediated by a change in HC Ca(2+, whereas negative feedback is mediated by a change in HC membrane potential. Local uncaging of AMPA receptor agonists suggests that positive feedback is spatially constrained to active HC-cone synapses, whereas the negative feedback signal spreads through HCs to affect release from surrounding cones. By locally offsetting the effects of negative feedback, positive feedback may amplify photoreceptor synaptic release without sacrificing HC-mediated contrast enhancement.

  3. Muller cell reactivity in response to photoreceptor degeneration in rats with defective polycystin-2.

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    Stefanie Vogler

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Retinal degeneration in transgenic rats that express a mutant cilia gene polycystin-2 (CMV-PKD2(1/703HA is characterized by initial photoreceptor degeneration and glial activation, followed by vasoregression and neuronal degeneration (Feng et al., 2009, PLoS One 4: e7328. It is unknown whether glial activation contributes to neurovascular degeneration after photoreceptor degeneration. We characterized the reactivity of Müller glial cells in retinas of rats that express defective polycystin-2. METHODS: Age-matched Sprague-Dawley rats served as control. Retinal slices were immunostained for intermediate filaments, the potassium channel Kir4.1, and aquaporins 1 and 4. The potassium conductance of isolated Müller cells was recorded by whole-cell patch clamping. The osmotic swelling characteristics of Müller cells were determined by superfusion of retinal slices with a hypoosmotic solution. FINDINGS: Müller cells in retinas of transgenic rats displayed upregulation of GFAP and nestin which was not observed in control cells. Whereas aquaporin-1 labeling of photoreceptor cells disappeared along with the degeneration of the cells, aquaporin-1 emerged in glial cells in the inner retina of transgenic rats. Aquaporin-4 was upregulated around degenerating photoreceptor cells. There was an age-dependent redistribution of Kir4.1 in retinas of transgenic rats, with a more even distribution along glial membranes and a downregulation of perivascular Kir4.1. Müller cells of transgenic rats displayed a slight decrease in their Kir conductance as compared to control. Müller cells in retinal tissues from transgenic rats swelled immediately under hypoosmotic stress; this was not observed in control cells. Osmotic swelling was induced by oxidative-nitrosative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, and inflammatory lipid mediators. INTERPRETATION: Cellular swelling suggests that the rapid water transport through Müller cells in response to osmotic stress

  4. Transcriptional analysis of rat photoreceptor cells reveals daily regulation of genes important for visual signaling and light damage susceptibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunst, Stefanie; Wolloscheck, Tanja; Hölter, Philip; Wengert, Alexander; Grether, Markus; Sticht, Carsten; Weyer, Veronika; Wolfrum, Uwe; Spessert, Rainer

    2013-03-01

    Photoreceptor cells face the challenge of adjusting their function and, possibly, their susceptibility to light damage to the marked daily changes in ambient light intensity. To achieve a better understanding of photoreceptor adaptation at the transcriptional level, this study aimed to identify genes which are under daily regulation in photoreceptor cells using microarray analysis and quantitative PCR. Included in the gene set obtained were a number of genes which up until now have not been shown to be expressed in photoreceptor cells, such as Atf3 (activating transcription factor 3) and Pde8a (phosphodiesterase 8A), and others with a known impact on phototransduction and/or photoreceptor survival, such as Grk1 (G protein-coupled receptor kinase 1) and Pgc-1α (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ, coactivator 1alpha). According to their daily dynamics, the genes identified could be clustered in two groups: those with peak expression during the second part of the day which are uniformly promoted to cycle by light/dark transitions and those with peak expression during the second part of the night which are predominantly driven by a clock. Since Grk1 and Pgc-1α belong in the first group, the present results support a concept in which transcriptional regulation of genes by ambient light contributes to the functional adjustment of photoreceptor cells over the 24-h period.

  5. Hydroxyl radicals cause fluctuation in intracellular ferrous ion levels upon light exposure during photoreceptor cell death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imamura, Tomoyo; Hirayama, Tasuku; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Nagasawa, Hideko; Hara, Hideaki

    2014-12-01

    Iron accumulation is a potential pathogenic event often seen in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) patients. In this study, we focused on the relationship between AMD pathology and concentrations of ferrous ion, which is a highly reactive oxygen generator in biological systems. Murine cone-cells-derived 661 W cells were exposed to white fluorescence light at 2500 lx for 1, 3, 6, or 12 h. Levels of ferrous ions, reactive oxygen species (ROS), and hydroxyl radicals were detected by RhoNox-1, a novel fluorescent probe for the selective detection of ferrous ion, 5-(and-6)-chloromethyl-2',7'-dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate, acetyl ester (CM-H2DCFDA), and 3'-p-(aminophenyl) fluorescein, respectively. Reduced glutathione, total iron levels and photoreceptor cell death were also measured. Two genes related to iron metabolism, transferrin receptor 1 (TfR1) and H ferritin (HFt), were quantified by RT-PCR. The effects of ferrous ion on cell death and hydroxyl radical production were determined by treatment with a ferrous ion chelating agent, 2,2'-bipyridyl. We found that the ferrous ion level decreased with light exposure in the short time frame, whereas it was upregulated during a 6-h light exposure. Total iron, ROS, cell death rate, and expression of TfR and HFt genes were significantly increased in a time-dependent manner in 661 W cells exposed to light. Chelation with 2,2'-bipyridyl reduced the level of hydroxyl radicals and protected against light-induced cell death. These results suggest that light exposure decreases ferrous ion levels and enhances iron uptake in photoreceptor cells. Ferrous ion may be involved in light-induced photoreceptor cell death through production of hydroxyl radicals. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Retinoic acid regulates the expression of photoreceptor transcription factor NRL.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khanna, Hemant; Akimoto, Masayuki; Siffroi-Fernandez, Sandrine; Friedman, James S; Hicks, David; Swaroop, Anand

    2006-09-15

    NRL (neural retina leucine zipper) is a key basic motif-leucine zipper (bZIP) transcription factor, which orchestrates rod photoreceptor differentiation by activating the expression of rod-specific genes. The deletion of Nrl in mice results in functional cones that are derived from rod precursors. However, signaling pathways modulating the expression or activity of NRL have not been elucidated. Here, we show that retinoic acid (RA), a diffusible factor implicated in rod development, activates the expression of NRL in serum-deprived Y79 human retinoblastoma cells and in primary cultures of rat and porcine photoreceptors. The effect of RA is mimicked by TTNPB, a RA receptor agonist, and requires new protein synthesis. DNaseI footprinting and electrophoretic mobility shift assays (EMSA) using bovine retinal nuclear extract demonstrate that RA response elements (RAREs) identified within the Nrl promoter bind to RA receptors. Furthermore, in transiently transfected Y79 and HEK293 cells the activity of Nrl-promoter driving a luciferase reporter gene is induced by RA, and this activation is mediated by RAREs. Our data suggest that signaling by RA via RA receptors regulates the expression of NRL, providing a framework for delineating early steps in photoreceptor cell fate determination.

  7. Dynamic increase in extracellular ATP accelerates photoreceptor cell apoptosis via ligation of P2RX7 in subretinal hemorrhage.

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    Shoji Notomi

    Full Text Available Photoreceptor degeneration is the most critical cause of visual impairment in age-related macular degeneration (AMD. In neovascular form of AMD, severe photoreceptor loss develops with subretinal hemorrhage due to choroidal neovascularization (CNV, growth of abnormal blood vessels from choroidal circulation. However, the detailed mechanisms of this process remain elusive. Here we demonstrate that neovascular AMD with subretinal hemorrhage accompanies a significant increase in extracellular ATP, and that extracellular ATP initiates neurodegenerative processes through specific ligation of Purinergic receptor P2X, ligand-gated ion channel, 7 (P2RX7; P2X7 receptor. Increased extracellular ATP levels were found in the vitreous samples of AMD patients with subretinal hemorrhage compared to control vitreous samples. Extravascular blood induced a massive release of ATP and photoreceptor cell apoptosis in co-culture with primary retinal cells. Photoreceptor cell apoptosis accompanied mitochondrial apoptotic pathways, namely activation of caspase-9 and translocation of apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF from mitochondria to nuclei, as well as TUNEL-detectable DNA fragmentation. These hallmarks of photoreceptor cell apoptosis were prevented by brilliant blue G (BBG, a selective P2RX7 antagonist, which is an approved adjuvant in ocular surgery. Finally, in a mouse model of subretinal hemorrhage, photoreceptor cells degenerated through BBG-inhibitable apoptosis, suggesting that ligation of P2RX7 by extracellular ATP may accelerate photoreceptor cell apoptosis in AMD with subretinal hemorrhage. Our results indicate a novel mechanism that could involve neuronal cell death not only in AMD but also in hemorrhagic disorders in the CNS and encourage the potential application of BBG as a neuroprotective therapy.

  8. Inhibitory Smads and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) modulate anterior photoreceptor cell number during planarian eye regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Sastre, Alejandro; Molina, Ma Dolores; Saló, Emili

    2012-01-01

    Planarians represent an excellent model to study the processes of body axis and organ re-specification during regeneration. Previous studies have revealed a conserved role for the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) pathway and its intracellular mediators Smad1/5/8 and Smad4 in planarian dorsoventral (DV) axis re-establishment. In an attempt to gain further insight into the role of this signalling pathway in planarians, we have isolated and functionally characte-rized the inhibitory Smads (I-Smads) in Schmidtea mediterranea. Two I-Smad homologues have been identified: Smed-smad6/7-1 and Smed-smad6/7-2. Expression of smad6/7-1 was detected in the parenchyma, while smad6/7-2 was found to be ex-pressed in the central nervous system and the eyes. Neither single smad6/7-1 and smad6/7-2 nor double smad6/7-1,-2 silencing gave rise to any apparent disruption of the DV axis. However, both regenerating and intact smad6/7-2 (RNAi) planarians showed defects in eye morphogenesis and displayed small, rounded eyes that lacked the anterior subpopulation of photoreceptor cells. The number of pigment cells was also reduced in these animals at later stages of regeneration. In contrast, after low doses of Smed-bmp(RNAi), planarians regenerated larger eyes in which the anterior subpopulation of photoreceptor cells was expanded. Our results suggest that Smed-smad6/7-2 and Smed-bmp control the re-specification and maintenance of anterior photoreceptor cell number in S. mediterranea.

  9. Morphologic evidence for differentiation of pinealocytes from photoreceptor cells in the adult noctule bat (Nyctalus noctula, Schreber).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pevet, P; Ariëns Kappers, J; Voûte, A M

    1977-07-26

    An electron microscopical investigation of the pineal gland of the adult noctule bat revealed the presence of some peculiar ciliary derivatives, similar to the club-shaped outer segment of rudimentary photoreceptor cells in the pineal organ of nonmammalian vertebrates. The pinealocytes of population I can be classified in several morphological types, one of them displaying morphological features resembling those of rudimentary photoreceptor cells. These results reconfirm the concept of the sensory cell line in the vertebrate pineal organ. The question whether the pinealocytes of population II belong to the same sensory cell line is discussed.

  10. In vitro expanded stem cells from the developing retina fail to generate photoreceptors but differentiate into myelinating oligodendrocytes.

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    Magdalena Czekaj

    Full Text Available Cell transplantation to treat retinal degenerative diseases represents an option for the replacement of lost photoreceptor cells. In vitro expandable cells isolated from the developing mammalian retina have been suggested as a potential source for the generation of high numbers of donor photoreceptors. In this study we used standardized culture conditions based on the presence of the mitogens FGF-2 and EGF to generate high numbers of cells in vitro from the developing mouse retina. These presumptive 'retinal stem cells' ('RSCs' can be propagated as monolayer cultures over multiple passages, express markers of undifferentiated neural cells, and generate neuronal and glial cell types upon withdrawal of mitogens in vitro or following transplantation into the adult mouse retina. The proportion of neuronal differentiation can be significantly increased by stepwise removal of mitogens and inhibition of the notch signaling pathway. However, 'RSCs', by contrast to their primary counterparts in vivo, i.e. retinal progenitor cells, loose the expression of retina-specific progenitor markers like Rax and Chx10 after passaging and fail to differentiate into photoreceptors both in vitro or after intraretinal transplantation. Notably, 'RSCs' can be induced to differentiate into myelinating oligodendrocytes, a cell type not generated by primary retinal progenitor cells. Based on these findings we conclude that 'RSCs' expanded in high concentrations of FGF-2 and EGF loose their retinal identity and acquire features of in vitro expandable neural stem-like cells making them an inappropriate cell source for strategies aimed at replacing photoreceptor cells in the degenerated retina.

  11. In vitro expanded stem cells from the developing retina fail to generate photoreceptors but differentiate into myelinating oligodendrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czekaj, Magdalena; Haas, Jochen; Gebhardt, Marlen; Müller-Reichert, Thomas; Humphries, Peter; Farrar, Jane; Bartsch, Udo; Ader, Marius

    2012-01-01

    Cell transplantation to treat retinal degenerative diseases represents an option for the replacement of lost photoreceptor cells. In vitro expandable cells isolated from the developing mammalian retina have been suggested as a potential source for the generation of high numbers of donor photoreceptors. In this study we used standardized culture conditions based on the presence of the mitogens FGF-2 and EGF to generate high numbers of cells in vitro from the developing mouse retina. These presumptive 'retinal stem cells' ('RSCs') can be propagated as monolayer cultures over multiple passages, express markers of undifferentiated neural cells, and generate neuronal and glial cell types upon withdrawal of mitogens in vitro or following transplantation into the adult mouse retina. The proportion of neuronal differentiation can be significantly increased by stepwise removal of mitogens and inhibition of the notch signaling pathway. However, 'RSCs', by contrast to their primary counterparts in vivo, i.e. retinal progenitor cells, loose the expression of retina-specific progenitor markers like Rax and Chx10 after passaging and fail to differentiate into photoreceptors both in vitro or after intraretinal transplantation. Notably, 'RSCs' can be induced to differentiate into myelinating oligodendrocytes, a cell type not generated by primary retinal progenitor cells. Based on these findings we conclude that 'RSCs' expanded in high concentrations of FGF-2 and EGF loose their retinal identity and acquire features of in vitro expandable neural stem-like cells making them an inappropriate cell source for strategies aimed at replacing photoreceptor cells in the degenerated retina.

  12. The transcription factor neural retina leucine zipper (NRL) controls photoreceptor-specific expression of myocyte enhancer factor Mef2c from an alternative promoter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Hong; Tummala, Padmaja; Guzman, Eduardo; Mali, Raghuveer S; Gregorski, Janina; Swaroop, Anand; Mitton, Kenneth P

    2011-10-07

    Neural retina leucine zipper (NRL) is an essential transcription factor for cell fate specification and functional maintenance of rod photoreceptors in the mammalian retina. In the Nrl(-/-) mouse retina, photoreceptor precursors fail to produce rods and generate functional cone photoreceptors that predominantly express S-opsin. Previous global expression analysis using microarrays revealed dramatically reduced expression of myocyte enhancer factor Mef2c in the adult Nrl(-/-) retina. We undertook this study to examine the biological relevance of Mef2c expression in retinal rod photoreceptors. Bioinformatics analysis, rapid analysis of cDNA ends (5'-RACE), and reverse transcription coupled with qPCR using splice site-specific oligonucleotides suggested that Mef2c is expressed in the mature retina from an alternative promoter. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) studies showed the association of active RNA polymerase II and acetylated histone H3 just upstream of Mef2c exon 4, providing additional evidence for the utilization of an alternative promoter in the retina. In concordance, we observed the binding of NRL to a putative NRL-response element (NRE) at this location by ChIP-seq and electrophoretic mobility shift assays. NRL also activated the Mef2c alternative promoter in vitro and in vivo. Notably, MEF2C could support Rhodopsin promoter activity in rod photoreceptors. We conclude that Mef2c expression from an alternative promoter in the retina is regulated by NRL. Our studies also implicate MEF2C as a transcriptional regulator of homeostasis in rod photoreceptor cells.

  13. Overlap of abnormal photoreceptor development and progressive degeneration in Leber congenital amaurosis caused by NPHP5 mutation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Downs, Louise M; Scott, Erin M; Cideciyan, Artur V; Iwabe, Simone; Dufour, Valerie; Gardiner, Kristin L; Genini, Sem; Marinho, Luis Felipe; Sumaroka, Alexander; Kosyk, Mychajlo S; Swider, Malgorzata; Aguirre, Geoffrey K; Jacobson, Samuel G; Beltran, William A; Aguirre, Gustavo D

    2016-10-01

    Ciliary defects can result in severe disorders called ciliopathies. Mutations in NPHP5 cause a ciliopathy characterized by severe childhood onset retinal blindness, Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), and renal disease. Using the canine NPHP5-LCA model we compared human and canine retinal phenotypes, and examined the early stages of photoreceptor development and degeneration, the kinetics of photoreceptor loss, the progression of degeneration and the expression profiles of selected genes. NPHP5-mutant dogs recapitulate the human phenotype of very early loss of rods, and relative retention of the central retinal cone photoreceptors that lack function. In mutant dogs, rod and cone photoreceptors have a sensory cilium, but develop and function abnormally and then rapidly degenerate; L/M cones are more severely affected than S-cones. The lack of outer segments in mutant cones indicates a ciliary dysfunction. Genes expressed in mutant rod or both rod and cone photoreceptors show significant downregulation, while those expressed only in cones are unchanged. Many genes in cell-death and -survival pathways also are downregulated. The canine disease is a non-syndromic LCA-ciliopathy, with normal renal structures and no CNS abnormalities. Our results identify the critical time points in the pathogenesis of the photoreceptor disease, and bring us closer to defining a potential time window for testing novel therapies for translation to patients.

  14. Targeted RP9 ablation and mutagenesis in mouse photoreceptor cells by CRISPR-Cas9

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lv, Ji-Neng; Zhou, Gao-Hui; Chen, Xuejiao; Chen, Hui; Wu, Kun-Chao; Xiang, Lue; Lei, Xin-Lan; Zhang, Xiao; Wu, Rong-Han; Jin, Zi-Bing

    2017-01-01

    Precursor messenger RNA (Pre-mRNA) splicing is an essential biological process in eukaryotic cells. Genetic mutations in many spliceosome genes confer human eye diseases. Mutations in the pre-mRNA splicing factor, RP9 (also known as PAP1), predispose autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP) with an early onset and severe vision loss. However, underlying molecular mechanisms of the RP9 mutation causing photoreceptor degeneration remains fully unknown. Here, we utilize the CRISPR/Cas9 system to generate both the Rp9 gene knockout (KO) and point mutation knock in (KI) (Rp9, c.A386T, P.H129L) which is analogous to the reported one in the retinitis pigmentosa patients (RP9, c.A410T, P.H137L) in 661 W retinal photoreceptor cells in vitro. We found that proliferation and migration were significantly decreased in the mutated cells. Gene expression profiling by RNA-Seq demonstrated that RP associated genes, Fscn2 and Bbs2, were down-regulated in the mutated cells. Furthermore, pre-mRNA splicing of the Fscn2 gene was markedly affected. Our findings reveal a functional relationship between the ubiquitously expressing RP9 and the disease-specific gene, thereafter provide a new insight of disease mechanism in RP9-related retinitis pigmentosa. PMID:28216641

  15. IGF-I maintains calpastatin expression and attenuates apoptosis in several models of photoreceptor cell death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arroba, Ana I; Wallace, Deborah; Mackey, Ashley; de la Rosa, Enrique J; Cotter, Thomas G

    2009-09-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa is a heterogeneous group of inherited retinal dystrophies in which the loss of photoreceptor cells via apoptosis leads to blindness. In this study we have experimentally mimicked this condition by treating 661W cells and wild-type mouse retinal explants with a Ca(2+) ionophore. Ca(2+) overload induced apoptosis, which was correlated with calpain-2 activation, loss of calpastatin, its endogenous inhibitor, as well as the loss of its transcriptional activator, phospho-cAMP response element binding (CREB). All are similar changes to those observed in the rd1 mouse model of retinitis pigmentosa. Insulin like-growth factor-I (IGF-I) attenuated this Ca(2+)-induced apoptosis, as well as decreased the activation of calpain-2 and maintained calpastatin levels through the activation of the Akt-CREB pathway. Similarly, IGF-I decreased photoreceptor apoptosis in rd1 mouse retinal explants in parallel with reduced activation of calpain-2 and increased levels of calpastatin and activation of phospho-CREB. In conclusion, IGF-I seems to protect neural cells following a physiopathological or an experimental increase in intracellular Ca(2+), an observation that may have therapeutic consequences in neurodegenerative diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa.

  16. A role for the extracellular domain of Crumbs in morphogenesis of Drosophila photoreceptor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard, Mélisande; Muschalik, Nadine; Grawe, Ferdi; Ozüyaman, Susann; Knust, Elisabeth

    2009-12-01

    Morphogenesis of Drosophila photoreceptor cells includes the subdivision of the apical membrane into the photosensitive rhabdomere and the associated stalk membrane, as well as a considerable elongation of the cell. Drosophila Crumbs (Crb), an evolutionarily conserved transmembrane protein, organizes an apical protein scaffold, which is required for elongation of the photoreceptor cell and extension of the stalk membrane. To further elucidate the role played by different Crb domains during eye morphogenesis, we performed a structure-function analysis in the eye. The analysis showed that the three variants tested, namely full-length Crb, the membrane-bound intracellular domain and the extracellular domain were able to rescue the elongation defects of crb mutant rhabdomeres. However, only full-length Crb and the membrane-bound intracellular domain could partially restore the length of the stalk membrane, while the extracellular domain failed to do so. This failure was associated with the inability of the extracellular domain to recruit beta(Heavy)-spectrin to the stalk membrane. These results highlight the functional importance of the extracellular domain of Crb in the Drosophila eye. They are in line with previous observations, which showed that mutations in the extracellular domain of human CRB1 are associated with retinitis pigmentosa 12 and Leber congenital amaurosis, two severe forms of retinal dystrophy.

  17. Crumbs limits oxidase-dependent signaling to maintain epithelial integrity and prevent photoreceptor cell death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chartier, François J-M; Hardy, Émilie J-L; Laprise, Patrick

    2012-09-17

    Drosophila melanogaster Crumbs (Crb) and its mammalian orthologues (CRB1-3) share evolutionarily conserved but poorly defined roles in regulating epithelial polarity and, in photoreceptor cells, morphogenesis and stability. Elucidating the molecular mechanisms of Crb function is vital, as mutations in the human CRB1 gene cause retinal dystrophies. Here, we report that Crb restricts Rac1-NADPH oxidase-dependent superoxide production in epithelia and photoreceptor cells. Reduction of superoxide levels rescued epithelial defects in crb mutant embryos, demonstrating that limitation of superoxide production is a crucial function of Crb and that NADPH oxidase and superoxide contribute to the molecular network regulating epithelial tissue organization. We further show that reduction of Rac1 or NADPH oxidase activity or quenching of reactive oxygen species prevented degeneration of Crb-deficient retinas. Thus, Crb fulfills a protective role during light exposure by limiting oxidative damage resulting from Rac1-NADPH oxidase complex activity. Collectively, our results elucidate an important mechanism by which Crb functions in epithelial organization and the prevention of retinal degeneration.

  18. Novel Methodology for Creating Macaque Retinas with Sortable Photoreceptors and Ganglion Cells

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    Shreyasi Choudhury

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The ability to generate macaque retinas with sortable cell populations would be of great benefit to both basic and translational studies of the primate retina. The purpose of our study was therefore to develop methods to achieve this goal by selectively labeling, in life, photoreceptors (PRs and retinal ganglion cells (RGCs with separate fluorescent markers. Methods: Labeling of macaque (Macaca fascicularis PRs and RGCs was accomplished by subretinal delivery of AAV5-hGRK1-GFP, and retrograde transport of micro-ruby™ from the lateral geniculate nucleus, respectively. Retinas were anatomically separated into different regions. Dissociation conditions were optimized, and cells from each region underwent fluorescent activated cell sorting (FACS. Expression of retinal cell type- specific genes was assessed by quantitative real-time PCR to characterize isolated cell populations. Results: We show that macaque PRs and RGCs can be simultaneously labeled in-life and enriched populations isolated by FACS. Recovery from different retinal regions indicated efficient isolation/enrichment for PRs and RGCs, with the macula being particularly amendable to this technique. Conclusions: The methods and materials presented here allow for the identification of novel reagents designed to target retinal ganglion cells and/or photoreceptors in a species that is phylogenetically and anatomically similar to human. These techniques will enable screening of intravitreally- delivered AAV capsid libraries for variants with increased tropism for PRs and/or RGCs and the evaluation of vector tropism and/or cellular promoter activity of gene therapy vectors in a clinically relevant species.

  19. Photoreceptor engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thea eZiegler

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  20. Pupillary Light Reflexes in Severe Photoreceptor Blindness Isolate the Melanopic Component of Intrinsically Photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charng, Jason; Jacobson, Samuel G.; Heon, Elise; Roman, Alejandro J.; McGuigan, David B.; Sheplock, Rebecca; Kosyk, Mychajlo S.; Swider, Malgorzata; Cideciyan, Artur V.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose Pupillary light reflex (PLR) is driven by outer retinal photoreceptors and by melanopsin-expressing intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells of the inner retina. To isolate the melanopic component, we studied patients with severe vision loss due to Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA) caused by gene mutations acting on the outer retina. Methods Direct PLR was recorded in LCA patients (n = 21) with known molecular causation and severe vision loss. Standard stimuli (2.5 log scot-cd.m−2; ∼13 log quanta.cm−2.s−1; achromatic full-field) with 0.1- or 5-second duration were used in all patients. Additional recordings were performed with higher luminance (3.9 log scot-cd.m−2) in a subset of patients. Results The LCA patients showed no detectable PLR to the standard stimulus with short duration. With longer-duration stimuli, a PLR was detectable in the majority (18/21) of patients. The latency of the PLR was 2.8 ± 1.3 seconds, whereas normal latency was 0.19 ± 0.02 seconds. Peak contraction amplitude in patients was 1.1 ± 0.9 mm at 6.2 ± 2.3 seconds, considerably different from normal amplitude of 4.2 ± 0.4 mm at 3.0 ± 0.4 seconds. Recordings with higher luminance demonstrated that PLRs in severe LCA could also be evoked with short-duration stimuli. Conclusions The PLR in severe LCA patients likely represents the activation of the melanopic circuit in isolation from rod and cone input. Knowledge of the properties of the human melanopic PLR allows not only comparison to those in animal models but also serves to define the fidelity of postretinal transmission in clinical trials targeting patients with no outer retinal function. PMID:28660274

  1. Midkine-a protein localization in the developing and adult retina of the zebrafish and its function during photoreceptor regeneration.

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    Esther Gramage

    Full Text Available Midkine is a heparin binding growth factor with important functions in neuronal development and survival, but little is known about its function in the retina. Previous studies show that in the developing zebrafish, Midkine-a (Mdka regulates cell cycle kinetics in retinal progenitors, and following injury to the adult zebrafish retina, mdka is strongly upregulated in Müller glia and the injury-induced photoreceptor progenitors. Here we provide the first data describing Mdka protein localization during different stages of retinal development and during the regeneration of photoreceptors in adults. We also experimentally test the role of Mdka during photoreceptor regeneration. The immuno-localization of Mdka reflects the complex spatiotemporal pattern of gene expression and also reveals the apparent secretion and extracellular trafficking of this protein. During embryonic retinal development the Mdka antibodies label all mitotically active cells, but at the onset of neuronal differentiation, immunostaining is also localized to the nascent inner plexiform layer. Starting at five days post fertilization through the juvenile stage, Mdka immunostaining labels the cytoplasm of horizontal cells and the overlying somata of rod photoreceptors. Double immunolabeling shows that in adult horizontal cells, Mdka co-localizes with markers of the Golgi complex. Together, these data are interpreted to show that Mdka is synthesized in horizontal cells and secreted into the outer nuclear layer. In adults, Mdka is also present in the end feet of Müller glia. Similar to mdka gene expression, Mdka in horizontal cells is regulated by circadian rhythms. After the light-induced death of photoreceptors, Mdka immuonolabeling is localized to Müller glia, the intrinsic stem cells of the zebrafish retina, and proliferating photoreceptor progenitors. Knockdown of Mdka during photoreceptor regeneration results in less proliferation and diminished regeneration of rod

  2. Knockout of Ccr2 alleviates photoreceptor cell death in rodent retina exposed to chronic blue light.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Zizhong; Zhang, Yi; Wang, Junling; Mao, Pingan; Lv, Xuehua; Yuan, Songtao; Huang, Zhengru; Ding, Yuzhi; Xie, Ping; Liu, Qinghuai

    2016-11-10

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of visual loss after the age of 60 years, is a degenerative retinal disease involving a variety of environmental and hereditary factors. Although it has been implicated that immune system is involved in the disease progression, the exact role that microglia has is still unclear. Here we demonstrated that knockout of Ccr2 gene could alleviate photoreceptor cell death in mice retinas exposed to chronic blue light. In Ccr2(-/-) mice, a damaged microglia recruitment was shown in retina and this could protect the visual function in electroretinogram and alleviate the photoreceptor apoptosis, which thus helped attenuate the blue light-induced retinopathy. We further found an increased co-location of NLRP3, Iba-1, and IL-1β in fluorescence and a concomitant increased protein expression of NLRP3, caspase-1, and IL-1β in western blotting in chronic blue light-induced retinopathy. Moreover, the activation of microglia and their cellular NLRP3 inflammasomes occurred as an earlier step before the structural and functional damage of the mice retinas, which collectively supported that microglial NLRP3 inflammasome might be the key to the chronic blue light-induced retinopathy.

  3. Protective gene expression changes elicited by an inherited defect in photoreceptor structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yagya V Sharma

    Full Text Available Inherited defects in retinal photoreceptor structure impair visual transduction, disrupt relationship with the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE, and compromise cell viability. A variety of progressive retinal degenerative diseases can result, and knowledge of disease etiology remains incomplete. To investigate pathogenic mechanisms in such instances, we have characterized rod photoreceptor and retinal gene expression changes in response to a defined insult to photoreceptor structure, using the retinal degeneration slow (rds mouse model. Global gene expression profiling was performed on flow-sorted rds and wild-type rod photoreceptors immediately prior and subsequent to times at which OSs are normally elaborated. Dysregulated genes were identified via microarray hybridization, and selected candidates were validated using quantitative PCR analyses. Both the array and qPCR data revealed that gene expression changes were generally modest and dispersed amongst a variety of known functional networks. Although genes showing major (>5-fold differential expression were identified in a few instances, nearly all displayed transient temporal profiles, returning to WT levels by postnatal day (P 21. These observations suggest that major defects in photoreceptor cell structure may induce early homeostatic responses, which function in a protective manner to promote cell viability. We identified a single key gene, Egr1, that was dysregulated in a sustained fashion in rds rod photoreceptors and retina. Egr1 upregulation was associated with microglial activation and migration into the outer retina at times subsequent to the major peak of photoreceptor cell death. Interestingly, this response was accompanied by neurotrophic factor upregulation. We hypothesize that activation of Egr1 and neurotrophic factors may represent a protective immune mechanism which contributes to the characteristically slow retinal degeneration of the rds mouse model.

  4. Damage of photoreceptor-derived cells in culture induced by light emitting diode-derived blue light.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuse, Yoshiki; Ogawa, Kenjiro; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Hara, Hideaki

    2014-06-09

    Our eyes are increasingly exposed to light from the emitting diode (LED) light of video display terminals (VDT) which contain much blue light. VDTs are equipped with televisions, personal computers, and smart phones. The present study aims to clarify the mechanism underlying blue LED light-induced photoreceptor cell damage. Murine cone photoreceptor-derived cells (661 W) were exposed to blue, white, or green LED light (0.38 mW/cm(2)). In the present study, blue LED light increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, altered the protein expression level, induced the aggregation of short-wavelength opsins (S-opsin), resulting in severe cell damage. While, blue LED light damaged the primary retinal cells and the damage was photoreceptor specific. N-Acetylcysteine (NAC), an antioxidant, protected against the cellular damage induced by blue LED light. Overall, the LED light induced cell damage was wavelength-, but not energy-dependent and may cause more severe retinal photoreceptor cell damage than the other LED light.

  5. Revised lineage of larval photoreceptor cells in Ciona reveals archetypal collaboration between neural tube and neural crest in sensory organ formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oonuma, Kouhei; Tanaka, Moeko; Nishitsuji, Koki; Kato, Yumiko; Shimai, Kotaro; Kusakabe, Takehiro G

    2016-12-01

    The Ciona intestinalis larva has two distinct photoreceptor organs, a conventional pigmented ocellus and a nonpigmented ocellus, that are asymmetrically situated in the brain. The ciliary photoreceptor cells of these ocelli resemble visual cells of the vertebrate retina. Precise elucidation of the lineage of the photoreceptor cells will be key to understanding the developmental mechanisms of these cells as well as the evolutionary relationships between the photoreceptor organs of ascidians and vertebrates. Photoreceptor cells of the pigmented ocellus have been thought to develop from anterior animal (a-lineage) blastomeres, whereas the developmental origin of the nonpigmented ocellus has not been determined. Here, we show that the photoreceptor cells of both ocelli develop from the right anterior vegetal hemisphere: those of the pigmented ocellus from the right A9.14 cell and those of the nonpigmented ocellus from the right A9.16 cell. The pigmented ocellus is formed by a combination of two lineages of cells with distinct embryonic origins: the photoreceptor cells originate from a medial portion of the A-lineage neural plate, while the pigment cell originates from the lateral edge of the a-lineage neural plate. In light of the recently proposed close evolutionary relationship between the ocellus pigment cell of ascidians and the cephalic neural crest of vertebrates, the ascidian ocellus may represent a prototypic contribution of the neural crest to a cranial sensory organ.

  6. Müller glial cells induce stem cell properties in retinal progenitors in vitro and promote their further differentiation into photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simón, María V; De Genaro, Pablo; Abrahan, Carolina E; de los Santos, Beatriz; Rotstein, Nora P; Politi, Luis E

    2012-02-01

    Using stem cells to replace lost neurons is a promising strategy for treating retinal neurodegenerative diseases. Among their multiple functions, Müller glial cells are retina stem cells, with a robust regenerative potential in lower vertebrates, which is much more restricted in mammals. In rodents, most retina progenitors exit the cell cycle immediately after birth, differentiate as neurons, and then cannot reenter the cell cycle. Here we demonstrate that, in mixed cultures with Müller glial cells, rat retina progenitor cells expressed stem cell properties, maintained their proliferative potential, and were able to preserve these properties and remain mitotically active after several consecutive passages. Notably, these progenitors retained the capacity to differentiate as photoreceptors, even after successive reseedings. Müller glial cells markedly stimulated differentiation of retina progenitors; these cells initially expressed Crx and then developed as mature photoreceptors that expressed characteristic markers, such as opsin and peripherin. Moreover, they were light responsive, insofar as they decreased their cGMP levels when exposed to light, and they also showed high-affinity glutamate uptake, a characteristic of mature photoreceptors. Our present findings indicate that, in addition to giving rise to new photoreceptors, Müller glial cells might instruct a pool of undifferentiated cells to develop and preserve stem cell characteristics, even after successive reseedings, and then stimulate their differentiation as functional photoreceptors. This complementary mechanism might contribute to enlarge the limited regenerative capacity of mammalian Müller cells.

  7. Gene therapy rescues photoreceptor blindness in dogs and paves the way for treating human X-linked retinitis pigmentosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltran, William A; Cideciyan, Artur V; Lewin, Alfred S; Iwabe, Simone; Khanna, Hemant; Sumaroka, Alexander; Chiodo, Vince A; Fajardo, Diego S; Román, Alejandro J; Deng, Wen-Tao; Swider, Malgorzata; Alemán, Tomas S; Boye, Sanford L; Genini, Sem; Swaroop, Anand; Hauswirth, William W; Jacobson, Samuel G; Aguirre, Gustavo D

    2012-02-07

    Hereditary retinal blindness is caused by mutations in genes expressed in photoreceptors or retinal pigment epithelium. Gene therapy in mouse and dog models of a primary retinal pigment epithelium disease has already been translated to human clinical trials with encouraging results. Treatment for common primary photoreceptor blindness, however, has not yet moved from proof of concept to the clinic. We evaluated gene augmentation therapy in two blinding canine photoreceptor diseases that model the common X-linked form of retinitis pigmentosa caused by mutations in the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator (RPGR) gene, which encodes a photoreceptor ciliary protein, and provide evidence that the therapy is effective. After subretinal injections of adeno-associated virus-2/5-vectored human RPGR with human IRBP or GRK1 promoters, in vivo imaging showed preserved photoreceptor nuclei and inner/outer segments that were limited to treated areas. Both rod and cone photoreceptor function were greater in treated (three of four) than in control eyes. Histopathology indicated normal photoreceptor structure and reversal of opsin mislocalization in treated areas expressing human RPGR protein in rods and cones. Postreceptoral remodeling was also corrected: there was reversal of bipolar cell dendrite retraction evident with bipolar cell markers and preservation of outer plexiform layer thickness. Efficacy of gene therapy in these large animal models of X-linked retinitis pigmentosa provides a path for translation to human treatment.

  8. cGMP production of patient-specific iPSCs and photoreceptor precursor cells to treat retinal degenerative blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiley, Luke A; Burnight, Erin R; DeLuca, Adam P; Anfinson, Kristin R; Cranston, Cathryn M; Kaalberg, Emily E; Penticoff, Jessica A; Affatigato, Louisa M; Mullins, Robert F; Stone, Edwin M; Tucker, Budd A

    2016-07-29

    Immunologically-matched, induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived photoreceptor precursor cells have the potential to restore vision to patients with retinal degenerative diseases like retinitis pigmentosa. The purpose of this study was to develop clinically-compatible methods for manufacturing photoreceptor precursor cells from adult skin in a non-profit cGMP environment. Biopsies were obtained from 35 adult patients with inherited retinal degeneration and fibroblast lines were established under ISO class 5 cGMP conditions. Patient-specific iPSCs were then generated, clonally expanded and validated. Post-mitotic photoreceptor precursor cells were generated using a stepwise cGMP-compliant 3D differentiation protocol. The recapitulation of the enhanced S-cone phenotype in retinal organoids generated from a patient with NR2E3 mutations demonstrated the fidelity of these protocols. Transplantation into immune compromised animals revealed no evidence of abnormal proliferation or tumor formation. These studies will enable clinical trials to test the safety and efficiency of patient-specific photoreceptor cell replacement in humans.

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

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    Passamaneck Yale J

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract 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

  10. Blockage of NOX2/MAPK/NF-κB Pathway Protects Photoreceptors against Glucose Deprivation-Induced Cell Death

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    Bin Fan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Acute energy failure is one of the critical factors contributing to the pathogenic mechanisms of retinal ischemia. Our previous study demonstrated that glucose deprivation can lead to a caspase-dependent cell death of photoreceptors. The aim of this study was to decipher the upstream signal pathway in glucose deprivation- (GD- induced cell death. We mimicked acute energy failure by using glucose deprivation in photoreceptor cells (661W cells. GD-induced oxidative stress was evaluated by measuring ROS with the DCFH-DA assay and HO-1 expression by Western blot analysis. The activation of NOX2/MAPK/NF-κB signal was assessed by Western blot and immunohistochemical assays. The roles of these signals in GD-induced cell death were measured by using their specific inhibitors. Inhibition of Rac-1 and NOX2 suppressed GD-induced oxidative stress and protected photoreceptors against GD-induced cell death. NOX2 was an upstream signal in the caspase-dependent cell death cascade, yet the downstream MAPK pathways were activated and blocking MAPK signals rescued 661W cells from GD-induced death. In addition, GD caused the activation of NF-κB signal and inhibiting NF-κB significantly protected 661W cells. These observations may provide insights for treating retinal ischemic diseases and protecting retinal neurons from ischemia-induced cell death.

  11. Loss of Responses to Visual But Not Electrical Stimulation in Ganglion Cells of Rats With Severe Photoreceptor Degeneration

    OpenAIRE

    2009-01-01

    Retinal implants are intended to help patients with degenerative conditions by electrically stimulating surviving cells to produce artificial vision. However, little is known about how individual retinal ganglion cells respond to direct electrical stimulation in degenerating retina. Here we used a transgenic rat model to characterize ganglion cell responses to light and electrical stimulation during photoreceptor degeneration. Retinas from pigmented P23H-1 rats were compared with wild-type re...

  12. Whole-cell clamp of dissociated photoreceptors from the eye of Lima scabra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nasi, E

    1991-01-01

    Voltage-dependent membrane currents were investigated in enzymatically dissociated photoreceptors of Lima scabra using the whole-cell clamp technique. Depolarizing steps to voltages more positive than -10 mV elicit a transient inward current followed by a delayed, sustained outward current. The outward current is insensitive to replacement of a large fraction of extracellular Cl- with the impermeant anion glucuronate. Superfusion with tetraethylammonium and 4-aminopyridine reversibly abolishes the outward current, and internal perfusion with cesium also suppresses it, indicating that it is mediated by potassium channels. Isolation of the inward current reveals a fast activation kinetics, the peak amplitude occurring as early as 4-5 ms after stimulus onset, and a relatively rapid, though incomplete inactivation. Within the range of voltages examined, spanning up to +90 mV, reversal was not observed. The inward current is not sensitive to tetrodotoxin at concentrations up to 10 microM, and survives replacement of extracellular Na with tetramethylammonium. On the other hand, it is completely eliminated by calcium removal from the perfusing solution, and it is partially blocked by submillimolar concentrations of cadmium, suggesting that it is entirely due to voltage-dependent calcium channels. Analysis of the kinetics and voltage dependence of the isolated calcium current indicates the presence of two components, possibly reflecting the existence of separate populations of channels. Barium and strontium can pass through these channels, though less easily than calcium. Both the activation and the inactivation become significantly more sluggish when these ions serve as the charge carrier. A large fraction of the outward current is activated by preceding calcium influx. Suppression of this calcium-dependent potassium current shows a small residual component resembling the delayed rectifier. In addition, a transient outward current sensitive to 4-aminopyridine (Ia) could

  13. The Comparative Protective Effects of Ganoderma Spores Lipid and Fish Oil on N-Methyl-N-Nitrosourea-Induced Photoreceptor Cell Lesion in Rats

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    Yang Gao

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. To compare Ganoderma spores lipid (GSL and fish oil (FO in inhibiting retinal photoreceptor cell lesions induced by N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU in rats. Methods. 120 rats were untreated (normal control, NC group or treated with a single intraperitoneal injection of 40 mg/kg MNU (MNU group then treated with GSL (GSL group or FO (FO group. Eyes were obtained at 1, 3, 5, 7, and 10 days. Results. Light microscopy assay demonstrated that GSL and FO alleviated rat retinal photoreceptor cell damage (GSL and FO versus MNU group P.05. Conclusion. GSL, like FO, alleviates rat retinal photoreceptor cell damage induced by MNU.

  14. Age-related decrease in rod bipolar cell density of the human retina: an immunohistochemical study

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    P Aggarwal; T C Nag; S Wadhwa

    2007-03-01

    During normal ageing, the rods (and other neurones) undergo a significant decrease in density in the human retina from the fourth decade of life onward. Since the rods synapse with the rod bipolar cells in the outer plexiform layer, a decline in rod density (mainly due to death) may ultimately cause an associated decline of the neurones which, like the rod bipolar cells, are connected to them. The rod bipolar cells are selectively stained with antibodies to protein kinase C-. This study examined if rod bipolar cell density changes with ageing of the retina, utilizing donor human eyes (age: 6–91 years). The retinas were fixed and their temporal parts from the macula to the mid-periphery sectioned and processed for protein kinase C- immunohistochemistry. The density of the immunopositive rod bipolar cells was estimated in the mid-peripheral retina (eccentricity: 3–5 mm) along the horizontal temporal axis. The results show that while there is little change in the density of the rod bipolar cells from 6 to 35 years (2.2%), the decline during the period from 35 to 62 years is about 21% and between seventh and tenth decades, it is approximately 27%.

  15. Specialized photoreceptor composition in the raptor fovea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitkus, Mindaugas; Olsson, Peter; Toomey, Matthew B; Corbo, Joseph C; Kelber, Almut

    2017-02-15

    The retinae of many bird species contain a depression with high photoreceptor density known as the fovea. Many species of raptors have two foveae, a deep central fovea and a shallower temporal fovea. Birds have six types of photoreceptors: rods, active in dim light, double cones that are thought to mediate achromatic discrimination, and four types of single cones mediating color vision. To maximize visual acuity, the fovea should only contain photoreceptors contributing to high-resolution vision. Interestingly, it has been suggested that raptors might lack double cones in the fovea. We used transmission electron microscopy and immunohistochemistry to evaluate this claim in five raptor species: the common buzzard (Buteo buteo), the honey buzzard (Pernis apivorus), the Eurasian sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus), the red kite (Milvus milvus) and the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus). We found that all species, except the Eurasian sparrowhawk, lack double cones in the center of the central fovea. The size of the double cone-free zone differed between species. Only the common buzzard had a double cone-free zone in the temporal fovea. In three species, we examined opsin expression in the central fovea and found evidence that rod opsin positive cells were absent and violet-sensitive cone and green-sensitive cone opsin positive cells were present. We conclude that not only double cones, but also single cones may contribute to high-resolution vision in birds, and that raptors may in fact possess high-resolution tetrachromatic vision in the central fovea. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  16. Cav1.4 L-Type Calcium Channels Contribute to Calpain Activation in Degenerating Photoreceptors of rd1 Mice.

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    Christian Schön

    Full Text Available Retinitis pigmentosa is an inherited blinding disorder characterized by progressive degeneration and loss of photoreceptors. The exact mechanism of degeneration and cell death of photoreceptors is not known, but is thought to involve disturbed Ca2+-signaling. Ca2+ can enter the photoreceptor cell via outer segment cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG channels or synaptic Cav1.4 L-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCC. Previously, we have shown that genetic ablation of the Cngb1 gene encoding the B subunit of the rod CNG channel delays the fast progressing degeneration in the rd1 mutant mouse model of retinitis pigmentosa. In this study, we crossbred rd1 mice with the Cacna1f-deficient mouse lacking the Cav1.4 α1 subunit of the L-type VGCC. Longitudinal in vivo examinations of photoreceptor layer thickness by optical coherence tomography revealed a significant, but not sustained delay of retinal degeneration in Cacna1f x rd1 double mutant mice compared to rd1 mice. This was accompanied by a reduction of TUNEL positive cells in the early phase of rod degeneration. Remarkably, Cacna1f x rd1 double mutant mice displayed a strong decrease in the activation of the Ca2+-dependent protease calpain during photoreceptor loss. Our results show that genetic deletion of the synaptic Cav1.4 L-type VGCCs impairs calpain activation and leads to a short-term preservation of photoreceptors in the rd1 mouse.

  17. Requirement of histone deacetylase activity for the expression of critical photoreceptor genes

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    Cepko Constance L

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Histone deacetylases (HDACs play a major role in the regulation of gene transcription, often leading to transcriptional repression, as well as other effects following deacetylation of non-histone proteins. Results To investigate the role of HDACs in the developing mammalian retina, a general inhibitor of HDACs, trichostatin-A (TSA, was used to treat newborn murine retinae in explant cultures. Inhibition of HDAC activity resulted in a reduction in RNA levels for genes that regulate retinal development, as well as cell cycle regulators. Several of the genes encode transcription factors essential for rod photoreceptor development, Otx2, Nrl, and Crx. Using luciferase reporter assays, the promoter activity of both Nrl and Crx was found to be compromised by HDAC inhibition. Furthermore, downregulation of gene expression by HDAC inhibition didn't require de novo protein synthesis, and was associated with hyperacetylation of histones and non-histone proteins. Finally, HDAC inhibition in retinal explant cultures resulted in increased cell death, reduction in proliferation, a complete loss of rod photoreceptors and Müller glial cells, and an increase in bipolar cells. Conclusion HDAC activity is required for the expression of critical pro-rod transcription factors and the development of rod photoreceptor cells.

  18. Cone-like morphological, molecular, and electrophysiological features of the photoreceptors of the Nrl knockout mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniele, Lauren L; Lillo, Concepcion; Lyubarsky, Arkady L; Nikonov, Sergei S; Philp, Nancy; Mears, Alan J; Swaroop, Anand; Williams, David S; Pugh, Edward N

    2005-06-01

    To test the hypothesis that Nrl(-)(/)(-) photoreceptors are cones, by comparing them with WT rods and cones using morphological, molecular, histochemical, and electrophysiological criteria. The photoreceptor layer of fixed retinal tissue of 4- to 6-week-old mice was examined in plastic sections by electron microscopy, and by confocal microscopy in frozen sections immunolabeled for the mouse UV-cone pigment and colabeled with PNA. Quantitative immunoblot analysis was used to determine the levels of expression of key cone-specific proteins. Single- and paired-flash methods were used to extract the spectral sensitivity, kinetics, and amplification of the a-wave of the ERG. Outer segments of Nrl(-/-) photoreceptors ( approximately 7 mum) are shorter than those of wild-type (WT) rods ( approximately 25 mum) and cones ( approximately 15 mum); but, like WT cones, they have 25 or more basal discs open to the extracellular space, extracellular matrix sheaths stained by PNA, chromatin "clumping" in their nuclei, and mitochondria two times shorter than rods. Nrl(-/-) photoreceptors express the mouse UV cone pigment, cone transducin, and cone arrestin in amounts expected, given the relative size and density of cones in the two retinas. The ERG a-wave was used to assay the properties of the photocurrent response. The sensitivity of the Nrl(-/-) a-wave is at its maximum at 360 nm, with a secondary mode at 510 nm having approximately one-tenth the maximum sensitivity. These wavelengths are the lambda(max) of the two mouse cone pigments. The time to peak of the dim-flash photocurrent response was approximately 50 ms, more than two times faster than that of rods. Many morphological, molecular, and electrophysiological features of the Nrl(-/-) photoreceptors are cone-like, and strongly distinguish these cells from rods. This retina provides a model for the investigation of cone function and cone-specific genetic disease.

  19. Rb deficiency during Drosophila eye development deregulates EMC, causing defects in the development of photoreceptors and cone cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popova, Milena K; He, Wei; Korenjak, Michael; Dyson, Nicholas J; Moon, Nam-Sung

    2011-12-15

    Retinoblastoma tumor suppressor protein (pRb) regulates various biological processes during development and tumorigenesis. Although the molecular mechanism by which pRb controls cell cycle progression is well characterized, how pRb promotes cell-type specification and differentiation is less understood. Here, we report that Extra Macrochaetae (EMC), the Drosophila homolog of inhibitor of DNA binding/differentiation (ID), is an important protein contributing to the developmental defects caused by Rb deficiency. An emc allele was identified from a genetic screen designed to identify factors that, when overexpressed, cooperate with mutations in rbf1, which encodes one of the two Rb proteins found in Drosophila. EMC overexpression in an rbf1 hypomorphic mutant background induces cone cell and photoreceptor defects but has negligible effects in the wild-type background. Interestingly, a substantial fraction of the rbf1-null ommatidia normally exhibit similar cone cell and photoreceptor defects in the absence of ectopic EMC expression. Detailed EMC expression analyses revealed that RBF1 suppresses expression of both endogenous and ectopic EMC protein in photoreceptors, thus explaining the synergistic effect between EMC overexpression and rbf1 mutations, and the developmental defect observed in rbf1-null ommatidia. Our findings demonstrate that ID family proteins are an evolutionarily conserved determinant of Rb-deficient cells, and play an important role during development.

  20. Reprogramming amacrine and photoreceptor progenitors into retinal ganglion cells by replacing Neurod1 with Atoh7.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Chai-An; Cho, Jang-Hyeon; Wang, Jing; Gao, Zhiguang; Pan, Ping; Tsai, Wen-Wei; Frishman, Laura J; Klein, William H

    2013-02-01

    The specification of the seven retinal cell types from a common pool of retina progenitor cells (RPCs) involves complex interactions between the intrinsic program and the environment. The proneural basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcriptional regulators are key components for the intrinsic programming of RPCs and are essential for the formation of the diverse retinal cell types. However, the extent to which an RPC can re-adjust its inherent program and the mechanisms through which the expression of a particular bHLH factor influences RPC fate is unclear. Previously, we have shown that Neurod1 inserted into the Atoh7 locus activates the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) program in Atoh7-expressing RPCs but not in Neurod1-expressing RPCs, suggesting that Atoh7-expressing RPCs are not able to adopt the cell fate determined by Neurod1, but rather are pre-programmed to produce RGCs. Here, we show that Neurod1-expressing RPCs, which are destined to produce amacrine and photoreceptor cells, can be re-programmed into RGCs when Atoh7 is inserted into the Neurod1 locus. These results suggest that Atoh7 acts dominantly to convert a RPC subpopulation not destined for an RGC fate to adopt that fate. Thus, Atoh7-expressing and Neurod1-expressing RPCs are intrinsically different in their behavior. Additionally, ChIP-Seq analysis identified an Atoh7-dependent enhancer within the intronic region of Nrxn3. The enhancer recognized and used Atoh7 in the developing retina to regulate expression of Nrxn3, but could be forced to use Neurod1 when placed in a different regulatory context. The results indicate that Atoh7 and Neurod1 activate distinct sets of genes in vivo, despite their common DNA-binding element.

  1. Drosophila Lin-7 is a component of the Crumbs complex in epithelia and photoreceptor cells and prevents light-induced retinal degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachmann, André; Grawe, Ferdi; Johnson, Kevin; Knust, Elisabeth

    2008-03-01

    The Drosophila Crumbs protein complex is required to maintain epithelial cell polarity in the embryo, to ensure proper morphogenesis of photoreceptor cells and to prevent light-dependent retinal degeneration. In Drosophila, the core components of the complex are the transmembrane protein Crumbs, the membrane-associated guanylate kinase (MAGUK) Stardust and the scaffolding protein DPATJ. The composition of the complex and some of its functions are conserved in mammalian epithelial and photoreceptor cells. Here, we report that Drosophila Lin-7, a scaffolding protein with one Lin-2/Lin-7 (L27) domain and one PSD-95/Dlg/ZO-1 (PDZ) domain, is associated with the Crumbs complex in the subapical region of embryonic and follicle epithelia and at the stalk membrane of adult photoreceptor cells. DLin-7 loss-of-function mutants are viable and fertile. While DLin-7 localization depends on Crumbs, neither Crumbs, Stardust nor DPATJ require DLin-7 for proper accumulation in the subapical region. Unlike other components of the Crumbs complex, DLin-7 is also enriched in the first optic ganglion, the lamina, where it co-localizes with Discs large, another member of the MAGUK family. In contrast to crumbs mutant photoreceptor cells, those mutant for DLin-7 do not display any morphogenetic abnormalities. Similar to crumbs mutant eyes, however, DLin-7 mutant photoreceptors undergo progressive, light-dependent degeneration. These results support the previous conclusions that the function of the Crumbs complex in cell survival is independent from its function in photoreceptor morphogenesis.

  2. A role for prenylated rab acceptor 1 in vertebrate photoreceptor development

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    Dickison Virginia M

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The rd1 mouse retina is a well-studied model of retinal degeneration where rod photoreceptors undergo cell death beginning at postnatal day (P 10 until P21. This period coincides with photoreceptor terminal differentiation in a normal retina. We have used the rd1 retina as a model to investigate early molecular defects in developing rod photoreceptors prior to the onset of degeneration. Results Using a microarray approach, we performed gene profiling comparing rd1 and wild type (wt retinas at four time points starting at P2, prior to any obvious biochemical or morphological differences, and concluding at P8, prior to the initiation of cell death. Of the 143 identified differentially expressed genes, we focused on Rab acceptor 1 (Rabac1, which codes for the protein Prenylated rab acceptor 1 (PRA1 and plays an important role in vesicular trafficking. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis confirmed reduced expression of PRA1 in rd1 retina at all time points examined. Immunohistochemical observation showed that PRA1-like immunoreactivity (LIR co-localized with the cis-Golgi marker GM-130 in the photoreceptor as the Golgi translocated from the perikarya to the inner segment during photoreceptor differentiation in wt retinas. Diffuse PRA1-LIR, distinct from the Golgi marker, was seen in the distal inner segment of wt photoreceptors starting at P8. Both plexiform layers contained PRA1 positive punctae independent of GM-130 staining during postnatal development. In the inner retina, PRA1-LIR also colocalized with the Golgi marker in the perinuclear region of most cells. A similar pattern was seen in the rd1 mouse inner retina. However, punctate and significantly reduced PRA1-LIR was present throughout the developing rd1 inner segment, consistent with delayed photoreceptor development and abnormalities in Golgi sorting and vesicular trafficking. Conclusions We have identified genes that are differentially regulated in the rd1 retina at early

  3. Protective effects of naringenin eye drops on N-methyl-N-nitrosourea-induced photoreceptor cell death in rats

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    Jun-Li Lin

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available AIM: To investigate the effects of naringenin eye drops on N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU-induced photoreceptor cell death in rats.METHODS: Photoreceptor cell death was induced by single intraperitoneal injection of MNU (60 mg/kg in rats. Both eyes of all animals were instilled with one drop of vehicle, 0.5% or 1.0% naringenin eye drops three times per day from 7d before to 17d after MNU injection. Effects of naringenin on MNU-induced photoreceptor cell death were evaluated by electrophysiological and histological analysis.RESULTS:Flash electroretinography (FERG and oscillatory potentials (OPs recordings showed that the vehicle control group had remarkable reduction of amplitudes and prolongation of latency times. FERG and OPs responses were significantly reversed in MNU-induced rats treated with 0.5% or 1.0% naringenin eye drops compared with the vehicle control. The retinal morphological results showed that naringenin dose-dependently preserved the outer nuclear layer, outer retina and total retina.CONCLUSION:These results indicate that topical treatment with naringenin eye drops prevented retinal neurons from MNU-induced structural and functional damages.

  4. Erythropoietin Slows Photoreceptor Cell Death in a Mouse Model of Autosomal Dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa.

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    Tonia S Rex

    Full Text Available To test the efficacy of systemic gene delivery of a mutant form of erythropoietin (EPO-R76E that has attenuated erythropoietic activity, in a mouse model of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa.Ten-day old mice carrying one copy of human rhodopsin with the P23H mutation and both copies of wild-type mouse rhodopsin (hP23H RHO+/-,mRHO+/+ were injected into the quadriceps with recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV carrying either enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP or EpoR76E. Visual function (electroretinogram and retina structure (optical coherence tomography, histology, and immunohistochemistry were assessed at 7 and 12 months of age.The outer nuclear layer thickness decreased over time at a slower rate in rAAV.EpoR76E treated as compared to the rAAV.eGFP injected mice. There was a statistically significant preservation of the electroretinogram at 7, but not 12 months of age.Systemic EPO-R76E slows death of the photoreceptors and vision loss in hP23H RHO+/-,mRHO+/+ mice. Treatment with EPO-R76E may widen the therapeutic window for retinal degeneration patients by increasing the number of viable cells. Future studies might investigate if co-treatment with EPO-R76E and gene replacement therapy is more effective than gene replacement therapy alone.

  5. Drosophila photoreceptor cells exploited for the production of eukaryotic membrane proteins: receptors, transporters and channels.

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    Valérie Panneels

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Membrane proteins (MPs play key roles in signal transduction. However, understanding their function at a molecular level is mostly hampered by the lack of protein in suitable amount and quality. Despite impressive developments in the expression of prokaryotic MPs, eukaryotic MP production has lagged behind and there is a need for new expression strategies. In a pilot study, we produced a Drosophila glutamate receptor specifically in the eyes of transgenic flies, exploiting the naturally abundant membrane stacks in the photoreceptor cells (PRCs. Now we address the question whether the PRCs also process different classes of medically relevant target MPs which were so far notoriously difficult to handle with conventional expression strategies. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We describe the homologous and heterologous expression of 10 different targets from the three major MP classes--G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs, transporters and channels in Drosophila eyes. PRCs offered an extraordinary capacity to produce, fold and accommodate massive amounts of MPs. The expression of some MPs reached similar levels as the endogenous rhodopsin, indicating that the PRC membranes were almost unsaturable. Expression of endogenous rhodopsin was not affected by the target MPs and both could coexist in the membrane stacks. Heterologous expression levels reached about 270 to 500 pmol/mg total MP, resulting in 0.2-0.4 mg purified target MP from 1 g of fly heads. The metabotropic glutamate receptor and human serotonin transporter--both involved in synaptic transmission--showed native pharmacological characteristics and could be purified to homogeneity as a prerequisite for further studies. SIGNIFICANCE: We demonstrate expression in Drosophila PRCs as an efficient and inexpensive tool for the large scale production of functional eukaryotic MPs. The fly eye system offers a number of advantages over conventional expression systems and paves the way for in

  6. Quantitative and Topographical Analysis of the Losses of Cone Photoreceptors and Retinal Ganglion Cells Under Taurine Depletion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadj-Saïd, Wahiba; Froger, Nicolas; Ivkovic, Ivana; Jiménez-López, Manuel; Dubus, Élisabeth; Dégardin-Chicaud, Julie; Simonutti, Manuel; Quénol, César; Neveux, Nathalie; Villegas-Pérez, María Paz; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Sahel, Jose-Alain; Picaud, Serge; García-Ayuso, Diego

    2016-09-01

    Taurine depletion is known to induce photoreceptor degeneration and was recently found to also trigger retinal ganglion cell (RGC) loss similar to the retinal toxicity of vigabatrin. Our objective was to study the topographical loss of RGCs and cone photoreceptors, with a distinction between the two cone types (S- and L- cones) in an animal model of induced taurine depletion. We used the taurine transporter (Tau-T) inhibitor, guanidoethane sulfonate (GES), to induce taurine depletion at a concentration of 1% in the drinking water. Spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) and electroretinograms (ERG) were performed on animals after 2 months of GES treatment administered through the drinking water. Retinas were dissected as wholemounts and immunodetection of Brn3a (RGC), S-opsin (S-cones), and L-opsin (L-cones) was performed. The number of Brn3a+ RGCs, and L- and S-opsin+ cones was automatically quantified and their retinal distribution studied using isodensity maps. The treatment resulted in a significant reduction in plasma taurine levels and a profound dysfunction of visual performance as shown by ERG recordings. Optical coherence tomography analysis revealed that the retina was thinner in the taurine-depleted group. S-opsin+cones were more affected (36%) than L-opsin+cones (27%) with greater cone cell loss in the dorsal area whereas RGC loss (12%) was uniformly distributed. This study confirms that taurine depletion causes RGC and cone loss. Electroretinograms results show that taurine depletion induces retinal dysfunction in photoreceptors and in the inner retina. It establishes a gradient of cell loss depending on the cell type from S-opsin+cones, L-opsin+cones, to RGCs. The greater cell loss in the dorsal retina and of the S-cone population may underline different cellular mechanisms of cellular degeneration and suggests that S-cones may be more sensitive to light-induced retinal toxicity enhanced by the taurine depletion.

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

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    Mailin Sotolongo-Lopez

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-04-01

    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.

  9. Control of cell morphogenesis in bacteria: two distinct ways to make a rod-shaped cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniel, Richard A; Errington, Jeff

    2003-06-13

    Cell shape in most eubacteria is maintained by a tough external peptidoglycan cell wall. Recently, cell shape determining proteins of the MreB family were shown to form helical, actin-like cables in the cell. We used a fluorescent derivative of the antibiotic vancomycin as a probe for nascent peptidoglycan synthesis in unfixed cells of various Gram-positive bacteria. In the rod-shaped bacterium B. subtilis, synthesis of the cylindrical part of the cell wall occurs in a helical pattern governed by an MreB homolog, Mbl. However, a few rod-shaped bacteria have no MreB system. Here, a rod-like shape can be achieved by a completely different mechanism based on use of polar growth zones derived from the division machinery. These results provide insights into the diverse molecular strategies used by bacteria to control their cellular morphology, as well as suggesting ways in which these strategies may impact on growth rates and cell envelope structure.

  10. Temperature Dependence of Receptor Potential and Noise in Fly (Calliphora erythrocephala) Photoreceptor Cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roebroek, J.G.H.; Tjonger, M. van; Stavenga, D.G.

    1990-01-01

    We investigated the effect of temperature on the response to light of photoreceptors of the blowfly Calliphora erythrocephala. The latency and the time-to-peak of the responses become shorter as the temperature increases; Q10 = 2.8 ± 0.6. The response amplitude is independent of the temperature in t

  11. The Transcription Factor Neural Retina Leucine Zipper (NRL) Controls Photoreceptor-specific Expression of Myocyte Enhancer Factor Mef2c from an Alternative Promoter*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Hong; Tummala, Padmaja; Guzman, Eduardo; Mali, Raghuveer S.; Gregorski, Janina; Swaroop, Anand; Mitton, Kenneth P.

    2011-01-01

    Neural retina leucine zipper (NRL) is an essential transcription factor for cell fate specification and functional maintenance of rod photoreceptors in the mammalian retina. In the Nrl−/− mouse retina, photoreceptor precursors fail to produce rods and generate functional cone photoreceptors that predominantly express S-opsin. Previous global expression analysis using microarrays revealed dramatically reduced expression of myocyte enhancer factor Mef2c in the adult Nrl−/− retina. We undertook this study to examine the biological relevance of Mef2c expression in retinal rod photoreceptors. Bioinformatics analysis, rapid analysis of cDNA ends (5′-RACE), and reverse transcription coupled with qPCR using splice site-specific oligonucleotides suggested that Mef2c is expressed in the mature retina from an alternative promoter. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) studies showed the association of active RNA polymerase II and acetylated histone H3 just upstream of Mef2c exon 4, providing additional evidence for the utilization of an alternative promoter in the retina. In concordance, we observed the binding of NRL to a putative NRL-response element (NRE) at this location by ChIP-seq and electrophoretic mobility shift assays. NRL also activated the Mef2c alternative promoter in vitro and in vivo. Notably, MEF2C could support Rhodopsin promoter activity in rod photoreceptors. We conclude that Mef2c expression from an alternative promoter in the retina is regulated by NRL. Our studies also implicate MEF2C as a transcriptional regulator of homeostasis in rod photoreceptor cells. PMID:21849497

  12. Insights into the role of RD3 in guanylate cyclase trafficking, photoreceptor degeneration and Leber Congenital Amaurosis

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    Robert S. Molday

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available RD3 is an evolutionarily conserved 23 kDa protein expressed in rod and cone photoreceptor cells. Mutations in the gene encoding RD3 resulting in unstable non-functional C-terminal truncated proteins are responsible for early onset photoreceptor degeneration in Leber Congenital Amaurosis 12 (LCA12 patients, the rd3 mice, and the rcd2 collies. Recent studies have shown that RD3 interacts with guanylate cyclases GC1 and GC2 in retinal cell extracts and HEK293 cells co-expressing GC and RD3. This interaction inhibits GC catalytic activity and promotes the exit of GC1 and GC2 from the endoplasmic reticulum and their trafficking to photoreceptor outer segments. Adeno-associated viral vector delivery of the normal RD3 gene to photoreceptors of the Rd3 mouse restores GC1 and GC2 expression and outer segment localization and leads to the long-term recovery of visual function and photoreceptor cell survival. This review focuses on the genetic and biochemical studies that have provided insight into the role of RD3 in photoreceptor function and survival.

  13. The influence of photoreceptor size and distribution on optical sensitivity in the eyes of lanternfishes (Myctophidae.

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    Fanny de Busserolles

    Full Text Available 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

  14. The influence of photoreceptor size and distribution on optical sensitivity in the eyes of lanternfishes (Myctophidae)

    KAUST Repository

    de Busserolles, Fanny

    2014-06-13

    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

  15. Differentiation of retinal ganglion cells and photoreceptor precursors from mouse induced pluripotent stem cells carrying an Atoh7/Math5 lineage reporter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Bin-Bin; Zhang, Xiang-Mei; Hashimoto, Takao; Tien, Amy H; Chen, Andrew; Ge, Jian; Yang, Xian-Jie

    2014-01-01

    The neural retina is a critical component of the visual system, which provides the majority of sensory input in humans. Various retinal degenerative diseases can result in the permanent loss of retinal neurons, especially the light-sensing photoreceptors and the centrally projecting retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). The replenishment of lost RGCs and the repair of optic nerve damage are particularly challenging, as both RGC specification and their subsequent axonal growth and projection involve complex and precise regulation. To explore the developmental potential of pluripotent stem cell-derived neural progenitors, we have established mouse iPS cells that allow cell lineage tracing of progenitors that have expressed Atoh7/Math5, a bHLH transcription factor required for RGC production. These Atoh7 lineage reporter iPS cells encode Cre to replace one copy of the endogenous Atoh7 gene and a Cre-dependent YFP reporter in the ROSA locus. In addition, they express pluripotent markers and are capable of generating teratomas in vivo. Under anterior neural induction and neurogenic conditions in vitro, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells differentiate into neurons that co-express various RGC markers and YFP, indicating that these neurons are derived from Atoh7-expressing progenitors. Consistent with previous in vivo cell lineage studies, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells also give rise to a subset of Crx-positive photoreceptor precursors. Furthermore, inhibition of Notch signaling in the iPSC cultures results in a significant increase of YFP-positive RGCs and photoreceptor precursors. Together, these results show that Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells can be used to monitor the development and survival of RGCs and photoreceptors from pluripotent stem cells.

  16. Differentiation of retinal ganglion cells and photoreceptor precursors from mouse induced pluripotent stem cells carrying an Atoh7/Math5 lineage reporter.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bin-Bin Xie

    Full Text Available The neural retina is a critical component of the visual system, which provides the majority of sensory input in humans. Various retinal degenerative diseases can result in the permanent loss of retinal neurons, especially the light-sensing photoreceptors and the centrally projecting retinal ganglion cells (RGCs. The replenishment of lost RGCs and the repair of optic nerve damage are particularly challenging, as both RGC specification and their subsequent axonal growth and projection involve complex and precise regulation. To explore the developmental potential of pluripotent stem cell-derived neural progenitors, we have established mouse iPS cells that allow cell lineage tracing of progenitors that have expressed Atoh7/Math5, a bHLH transcription factor required for RGC production. These Atoh7 lineage reporter iPS cells encode Cre to replace one copy of the endogenous Atoh7 gene and a Cre-dependent YFP reporter in the ROSA locus. In addition, they express pluripotent markers and are capable of generating teratomas in vivo. Under anterior neural induction and neurogenic conditions in vitro, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells differentiate into neurons that co-express various RGC markers and YFP, indicating that these neurons are derived from Atoh7-expressing progenitors. Consistent with previous in vivo cell lineage studies, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells also give rise to a subset of Crx-positive photoreceptor precursors. Furthermore, inhibition of Notch signaling in the iPSC cultures results in a significant increase of YFP-positive RGCs and photoreceptor precursors. Together, these results show that Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells can be used to monitor the development and survival of RGCs and photoreceptors from pluripotent stem cells.

  17. Antibodies against Pax6 immunostain amacrine and ganglion cells and neuronal progenitors, but not rod precursors, in the normal and regenerating retina of the goldfish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hitchcock, P F; Macdonald, R E; VanDeRyt, J T; Wilson, S W

    1996-03-01

    Pax6 is a developmental regulatory gene that plays a key role in the development of the embryonic brain, eye, and retina. This gene is also expressed in discrete groups of neurons within the adult brain. In this study, antibodies raised against a fusion protein from a zebra fish pax6 cDNA were used to investigate the expression of the pax6 gene in the mature, growing, and regenerating retina of the goldfish. On western blots of retinal proteins, the pax6 antibodies recognize a single band at the approximate size of the zebra fish pax6 protein. In retinal sections, the antibodies label the nuclei of mature amacrine and some ganglion cells. At the retinal margin, where neurogenesis and cellular differentiation continually occur in goldfish, the antibodies label neuronal progenitors and the newly postmitotic neurons. Following injury and during neuronal regeneration, the antibodies label mitotically active progenitors of regenerating neurons. Rod precursors, proliferating cells that normally give rise solely to rod photoreceptors and are the presumed antecedents of the injury-stimulated neuronal progenitors, are not immunostained by antibodies to the pax6 protein. The results of this study document the identity of pax6-expressing cells in the mature retina and demonstrate that in the goldfish pax6 is expressed in neuronal progenitors during both retinal growth and regeneration.

  18. Photoreceptors of Nrl -/- mice coexpress functional S- and M-cone opsins having distinct inactivation mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikonov, Sergei S; Daniele, Lauren L; Zhu, Xuemei; Craft, Cheryl M; Swaroop, Anand; Pugh, Edward N

    2005-03-01

    The retinas of mice null for the neural retina leucine zipper transcription factor (Nrl-/-) contain no rods but are populated instead with photoreceptors that on ultrastructural, histochemical, and molecular criteria appear cone like. To characterize these photoreceptors functionally, responses of single photoreceptors of Nrl-/- mice were recorded with suction pipettes at 35-37 degrees C and compared with the responses of rods of WT mice. Recordings were made either in the conventional manner, with the outer segment (OS) drawn into the pipette ("OS in"), or in a novel configuration with a portion of the inner segment drawn in ("OS out"). Nrl-/- photoreceptor responses recorded in the OS-out configuration were much faster than those of WT rods: for dim-flash responses tpeak = 91 ms vs. 215 ms; for saturating flashes, dominant recovery time constants, tau(D) = 110 ms vs. 240 ms, respectively. Nrl-/- photoreceptors in the OS-in configuration had reduced amplification, sensitivity, and slowed recovery kinetics, but the recording configuration had no effect on rod response properties, suggesting Nrl-/- outer segments to be more susceptible to damage. Functional coexpression of two cone pigments in a single mammalian photoreceptor was established for the first time; the responses of every Nrl-/- cell were driven by both the short-wave (S, lambda(max) approximately 360 nm) and the mid-wave (M, lambda(max) approximately 510 nm) mouse cone pigment; the apparent ratio of coexpressed M-pigment varied from 1:1 to 1:3,000 in a manner reflecting a dorso-ventral retinal position gradient. The role of the G-protein receptor kinase Grk1 in cone pigment inactivation was investigated in recordings from Nrl-/-/Grk1-/- photoreceptors. Dim-flash responses of cells driven by either the S- or the M-cone pigment were slowed 2.8-fold and 7.5-fold, respectively, in the absence of Grk1; the inactivation of the M-pigment response was much more seriously retarded. Thus, Grk1 is essential to

  19. Structure and function of the retinal pigment epithelium, photoreceptors and cornea in the eye of Sardinella aurita (Clupeidae, Teleostei

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    Mostafa Ali Salem

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The structure of the pigment epithelium, photoreceptors and the cornea in the eye of a teleost, Sardinella aurita was examined by light and electron microscopy. The retinal pigment epithelium forms a single layer of cells joined laterally by cell junctions. Centrally in the retina these cells are columnar, while more peripherally they become cuboidal in shape. The basal (scleral border of the pigment epithelial cells is not infolded but is relatively smooth. Phagosomes containing lysosome-like bodies are also common features of the retinal pigment epithelium. Numerous melanosomes (pigment granules are abundant throughout the epithelial cells. These melanosomes probably absorb light which has passed through the photoreceptor layer. Four photoreceptor cells were identified; rods, long single cones, short single cones and double cones. The presence of these types suggests a diversity of photoreceptor function. Square mosaic pattern of cones and well-developed choroid gland are also main features of the eye. The inner segment of rods and cones were rich in organelles indicating much synthetic activity. Calycal processes projecting from cone outer segments are also observed. The cornea includes an epithelium with a complex pattern of surface microplicae, a basement membrane, dermal stroma, an iridescent layer, scleral stroma, Descemet’s membrane and endothelium. The autochthonous layer which is seen in some teleosts has not been observed in the cornea of this species. These and other observations were discussed in relation to the photic environment and habits of this fish.

  20. Birth of cone bipolar cells, but not rod bipolar cells, is associated with existing RGCs.

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    Ling Bai

    Full Text Available Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs play important roles in retinogenesis. They are required for normal retinal histogenesis and retinal cell number balance. Developmental RGC loss is typically characterized by initial retinal neuronal number imbalance and subsequent loss of retinal neurons. However, it is not clear whether loss of a specific non-RGC cell type in the RGC-depleted retina is due to reduced cell production or subsequent degeneration. Taking advantage of three knockout mice with varying degrees of RGC depletion, we re-examined bipolar cell production in these retinas from various aspects. Results show that generation of the cone bipolar cells is correlated with the existing number of RGCs. However, generation of the rod bipolar cells is unaffected by RGC shortage. Results report the first observation that RGCs selectively influence the genesis of subsequent retinal cell types.

  1. Birth of cone bipolar cells, but not rod bipolar cells, is associated with existing RGCs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Ling; Kiyama, Takae; Li, Hongyan; Wang, Steven W

    2014-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) play important roles in retinogenesis. They are required for normal retinal histogenesis and retinal cell number balance. Developmental RGC loss is typically characterized by initial retinal neuronal number imbalance and subsequent loss of retinal neurons. However, it is not clear whether loss of a specific non-RGC cell type in the RGC-depleted retina is due to reduced cell production or subsequent degeneration. Taking advantage of three knockout mice with varying degrees of RGC depletion, we re-examined bipolar cell production in these retinas from various aspects. Results show that generation of the cone bipolar cells is correlated with the existing number of RGCs. However, generation of the rod bipolar cells is unaffected by RGC shortage. Results report the first observation that RGCs selectively influence the genesis of subsequent retinal cell types.

  2. Rate equation model of phototransduction into the membranous disks of mouse rod cells

    CERN Document Server

    Takamoto, Rei; Awazu, Akinori

    2015-01-01

    A theoretical model was developed to investigate the rod phototransduction process in the mouse. In particular, we explored the biochemical reactions of several chemical components that contribute to the signaling process into/around the membranous disks in the outer segments of the rod cells. We constructed a rate equation model incorporating the molecular crowding effects of rhodopsin according to experimental results, which may hinder the diffusion of molecules on the disk mem- brane. The present model could effectively reproduce and explain the mechanisms of the following phenomena observed in experiments. First, the activations and relaxation of the wild-type mouse rod cell progressed more slowly than those of mutant cells containing half the amount of rhodopsin on the disk membrane. Second, the strong photoactivated state of the cell was sustained for a longer period when the light stimuli were strong. Finally, the lifetime of photoactivation exhibited a logarithmic increase with increasing light streng...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  4. Analysis of the light-sensitivity of the photoreceptor cells of the ataxia and male sterility (AMS) mouse, an Nna1 mutant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araki, Asuka; Maruyama, Riruke; Harada, Yuji; Ishikawa, Noriyoshi; Harada, Takayuki

    2012-11-01

    We confirmed retinal degeneration in the ataxia and male sterility (AMS) mouse, a mutant of the Nna1 gene, and examined the photosensitivity of the photoreceptors to determine how closely related the intrinsic and extrinsic factors were in triggering photoreceptor cell death. The AMS mice reared in a dark environment did not show atrophy of the outer nuclear layer (ONL) before 4 weeks of age, but in the older mice, retinal atrophy progressed in the same manner as in the AMS mice housed under normal light conditions. Examining the sensitivity to intentional light stimulation revealed the atrophy of the AMS retina to be exacerbated by a weak light. After administering strong light irradiation, equally severe ONL atrophy occurred in both the wild-type and AMS mice. These results indicate that in addition to functional loss of Nna1, another injurious stimulation is necessary to trigger death signals in photoreceptor cells during the postnatal period, but the cells die gradually and autonomously in older age, and that the mutation makes the cells vulnerable to a weak light, but does not increase the number of cells sensitive to strong light stimulation. Thus, these two factors are mutually independent death triggers in AMS photoreceptor cells.

  5. An essential role for RAX homeoprotein and NOTCH-HES signaling in Otx2 expression in embryonic retinal photoreceptor cell fate determination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muranishi, Yuki; Terada, Koji; Inoue, Tatsuya; Katoh, Kimiko; Tsujii, Toshinori; Sanuki, Rikako; Kurokawa, Daisuke; Aizawa, Shinichi; Tamaki, Yasuhiro; Furukawa, Takahisa

    2011-11-16

    The molecular mechanisms underlying cell fate determination from common progenitors in the vertebrate CNS remain elusive. We previously reported that the OTX2 homeoprotein regulates retinal photoreceptor cell fate determination. While Otx2 transactivation is a pivotal process for photoreceptor cell fate determination, its transactivation mechanism in the retina is unknown. Here, we identified an evolutionarily conserved Otx2 enhancer of ∼500 bp, named embryonic enhancer locus for photoreceptor Otx2 transcription (EELPOT), which can recapitulate initial Otx2 expression in the embryonic mouse retina. We found that the RAX homeoprotein interacts with EELPOT to transactivate Otx2, mainly in the final cell cycle of retinal progenitors. Conditional inactivation of Rax results in downregulation of Otx2 expression in vivo. We also showed that NOTCH-HES signaling negatively regulates EELPOT to suppress Otx2 expression. These results suggest that the integrated activity of cell-intrinsic and -extrinsic factors on EELPOT underlies the molecular basis of photoreceptor cell fate determination in the embryonic retina.

  6. Large-scale purification of porcine or bovine photoreceptor outer segments for phagocytosis assays on retinal pigment epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parinot, Célia; Rieu, Quentin; Chatagnon, Jonathan; Finnemann, Silvia C; Nandrot, Emeline F

    2014-12-12

    Analysis of one of the vital functions of retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells, the phagocytosis of spent aged distal fragments of photoreceptor outer segments (POS) can be performed in vitro. Photoreceptor outer segments with stacks of membranous discs containing the phototransduction machinery are continuously renewed in the retina. Spent POS are eliminated daily by RPE cells. Rodent, porcine/bovine and human RPE cells recognize POS from various species in a similar manner. To facilitate performing large series of experiments with little variability, a large stock of POS can be isolated from porcine eyes and stored frozen in aliquots. This protocol takes advantage of the characteristic of photopigments that display an orange color when kept in the dark. Under dim red light, retinae are collected in a buffer from opened eyecups cut in halves. The retinal cell suspension is homogenized, filtered and loaded onto a continuous sucrose gradient. After centrifugation, POS are located in a discrete band in the upper part of the gradient that has a characteristic orange color. POS are then collected, spun, resuspended sequentially in wash buffers, counted and aliquoted. POS obtained this way can be used for phagocytosis assays and analysis of protein activation, localization or interaction at various times after POS challenge. Alternatively, POS can be labeled with fluorophores, e.g., FITC, before aliquoting for subsequent fluorescence quantification of POS binding or engulfment. Other possible applications include the use of modified POS or POS challenge combined with stress conditions to study the effect of oxidative stress or aging on RPE cells.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emerling, Christopher A; Springer, Mark S

    2015-02-07

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  10. Transcription coactivators p300 and CBP are necessary for photoreceptor-specific chromatin organization and gene expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne K Hennig

    Full Text Available Rod and cone photoreceptor neurons in the mammalian retina possess specialized cellular architecture and functional features for converting light to a neuronal signal. Establishing and maintaining these characteristics requires appropriate expression of a specific set of genes, which is tightly regulated by a network of photoreceptor transcription factors centered on the cone-rod homeobox protein CRX. CRX recruits transcription coactivators p300 and CBP to acetylate promoter-bound histones and activate transcription of target genes. To further elucidate the role of these two coactivators, we conditionally knocked out Ep300 and/or CrebBP in differentiating rods or cones, using opsin-driven Cre recombinase. Knockout of either factor alone exerted minimal effects, but loss of both factors severely disrupted target cell morphology and function: the unique nuclear chromatin organization seen in mouse rods was reversed, accompanied by redistribution of nuclear territories associated with repressive and active histone marks. Transcription of many genes including CRX targets was severely impaired, correlating with reduced histone H3/H4 acetylation (the products of p300/CBP on target gene promoters. Interestingly, the presence of a single wild-type allele of either coactivator prevented many of these defects, with Ep300 more effective than Cbp. These results suggest that p300 and CBP play essential roles in maintaining photoreceptor-specific structure, function and gene expression.

  11. High irradiance responses involving photoreversible multiple photoreceptors as related to photoperiodic induction of cell division in Euglena.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolige, Aoen; Goto, Ken

    2007-02-01

    Little is known about the photoreceptors involved in the photoperiodism of unicellular organisms, which we elucidated by deriving their action spectra. The flagellated alga Euglena gracilis exhibits photoperiodism, with a long-day response in cell reproduction. The underlying clock is a circadian rhythm with photoinductive capability, peaking at subjective dusk and occurring at the 26th hour in continuous darkness (DD) when transferred from continuous light (LL); it regulates photoinduction, a high-irradiance response (HIR), of a dark-capability of progressing through cell division. We derived the action spectra by irradiating E. gracilis with monochromatic light for 3h at around the 26th hour; the action maxima occurred at 380, 450-460, 480, 610, 640, 660, 680, and 740nm. Except for the maximum at 450-460nm, which was always a major maximum, the maxima greatly depended on the red (R)/far-red (FR) ratio of the prior LL. The high R/FR ratio resulted in a dominant major peak at 640nm and minor peaks at 480 and 680nm, whereas the low ratio resulted in dominant major peaks at 610 and 740nm and minor peaks at 380 and 660nm; the critical fluence was minimally about 60mmolm(-2). These HIRs resulted from the accumulation of corresponding low-fluence responses (LFRs) because we found that repetition of a 3-min light/dark cycle, with critical fluences of 1mmolm(-2), lasting for 3h resulted in the same photoinduction as the continuous 3-h irradiation. Moreover, these LFRs expressed photoreversibility. Thus, photoperiodic photoinduction involves Euglena-phytochrome (640 and 740nm) and blue photoreceptor (460nm). Although 380, 480, 610, 660, and 680nm may also represent Euglena-phytochrome, a definite conclusion awaits further study.

  12. Stereotypical cell division orientation controls neural rod midline formation in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quesada-Hernández, Elena; Caneparo, Luca; Schneider, Sylvia; Winkler, Sylke; Liebling, Michael; Fraser, Scott E; Heisenberg, Carl-Philipp

    2010-11-09

    The development of multicellular organisms is dependent on the tight coordination between tissue growth and morphogenesis. The stereotypical orientation of cell divisions has been proposed to be a fundamental mechanism by which proliferating and growing tissues take shape. However, the actual contribution of stereotypical division orientation (SDO) to tissue morphogenesis is unclear. In zebrafish, cell divisions with stereotypical orientation have been implicated in both body-axis elongation and neural rod formation, although there is little direct evidence for a critical function of SDO in either of these processes. Here we show that SDO is required for formation of the neural rod midline during neurulation but dispensable for elongation of the body axis during gastrulation. Our data indicate that SDO during both gastrulation and neurulation is dependent on the noncanonical Wnt receptor Frizzled 7 (Fz7) and that interfering with cell division orientation leads to severe defects in neural rod midline formation but not body-axis elongation. These findings suggest a novel function for Fz7-controlled cell division orientation in neural rod midline formation during neurulation.

  13. Downregulation of the Canonical WNT Signaling Pathway by TGFβ1 Inhibits Photoreceptor Differentiation of Adult Human Müller Glia with Stem Cell Characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angbohang, Angshumonik; Wu, Na; Charalambous, Thalis; Eastlake, Karen; Lei, Yuan; Kim, Yung Su; Sun, Xinghuai H.

    2016-01-01

    Müller glia are responsible for the retina regeneration observed in zebrafish. Although the human retina harbors Müller glia with stem cell characteristics, there is no evidence that they regenerate the retina after disease or injury. Transforming growth factor-β (TGFβ) and Wnt signaling regulate retinal neurogenesis and inflammation, but their roles in the neural differentiation of human Müller stem cells (hMSC) are not known. We examined hMSC lines in vitro for the expression of various Wnt signaling components and for their modulation by TGFβ1, as well as the effect of this cytokine on the photoreceptor differentiation of these cells. Culture of hMSC with a combination of factors that induce photoreceptor differentiation of hMSC (FGF2, taurine, retinoic acid, and insulin-like growth factor type1; FTRI), markedly upregulated the expression of components of the canonical Wnt signaling pathway, including WNT2B, DKK1, and active β-CATENIN. Although FTRI did not modify mRNA expression of WNT5B, a component of the noncanonical/planar cell polarity Wnt pathway, it upregulated its secretion. Furthermore, TGFβ1 not only decreased WNT2B expression, but also inhibited FTRI-induced photoreceptor differentiation of hMSC, as determined by expression of the photoreceptor markers NR2E3, RHODOPSIN, and RECOVERIN. Inhibition of TGFβ1 signaling by an ALK5 inhibitor prevented TGFβ1-induced changes in the expression of the two Wnt ligands examined. More importantly, inhibition of the canonical WNT signaling by XAV-939 prevented FTRI-induced photoreceptor differentiation. These observations suggest that TGFβ may play a key role in preventing neural differentiation of hMSC and may constitute a potential target for induction of endogenous regeneration of the human retina. PMID:26456050

  14. Bax-induced apoptosis in Leber's congenital amaurosis: a dual role in rod and cone degeneration.

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    Séverine Hamann

    Full Text Available Pathogenesis in the Rpe65(-/- mouse model of Leber's congenital amaurosis (LCA is characterized by a slow and progressive degeneration of the rod photoreceptors. On the opposite, cones degenerate rapidly at early ages. Retinal degeneration in Rpe65(-/- mice, showing a null mutation in the gene encoding the retinal pigment epithelium 65-kDa protein (Rpe65, was previously reported to depend on continuous activation of a residual transduction cascade by unliganded opsin. However, the mechanisms of apoptotic signals triggered by abnormal phototransduction remain elusive. We previously reported that activation of a Bcl-2-dependent pathway was associated with apoptosis of rod photoreceptors in Rpe65(-/- mice during the course of the disease. In this study we first assessed whether activation of Bcl-2-mediated apoptotic pathway was dependent on constitutive activation of the visual cascade through opsin apoprotein. We then challenged the direct role of pro-apoptotic Bax protein in triggering apoptosis of rod and cone photoreceptors.Quantitative PCR analysis showed that increased expression of pro-apoptotic Bax and decreased level of anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 were restored in Rpe65(-/-/Gnat1(-/- mice lacking the Gnat1 gene encoding rod transducin. Moreover, photoreceptor apoptosis was prevented as assessed by TUNEL assay. These data indicate that abnormal activity of opsin apoprotein induces retinal cell apoptosis through the Bcl-2-mediated pathway. Following immunohistological and real-time PCR analyses, we further observed that decreased expression of rod genes in Rpe65-deficient mice was rescued in Rpe65(-/-/Bax(-/- mice. Histological and TUNEL studies confirmed that rod cell demise and apoptosis in diseased Rpe65(-/- mice were dependent on Bax-induced pathway. Surprisingly, early loss of cones was not prevented in Rpe65(-/-/Bax(-/- mice, indicating that pro-apoptotic Bax was not involved in the pathogenesis of cone cell death in Rpe65-deficient mice

  15. Meckelin 3 is necessary for photoreceptor outer segment development in rat Meckel syndrome.

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    Sarika Tiwari

    Full Text Available Ciliopathies lead to multiorgan pathologies that include renal cysts, deafness, obesity and retinal degeneration. Retinal photoreceptors have connecting cilia joining the inner and outer segment that are responsible for transport of molecules to develop and maintain the outer segment process. The present study evaluated meckelin (MKS3 expression during outer segment genesis and determined the consequences of mutant meckelin on photoreceptor development and survival in Wistar polycystic kidney disease Wpk/Wpk rat using immunohistochemistry, analysis of cell death and electron microscopy. MKS3 was ubiquitously expressed throughout the retina at postnatal day 10 (P10 and P21. However, in the mature retina, MKS3 expression was restricted to photoreceptors and the retinal ganglion cell layer. At P10, both the wild type and homozygous Wpk mutant retina had all retinal cell types. In contrast, by P21, cells expressing rod- and cone-specific markers were fewer in number and expression of opsins appeared to be abnormally localized to the cell body. Cell death analyses were consistent with the disappearance of photoreceptor-specific markers and showed that the cells were undergoing caspase-dependent cell death. By electron microscopy, P10 photoreceptors showed rudimentary outer segments with an axoneme, but did not develop outer segment discs that were clearly present in the wild type counterpart. At p21 the mutant outer segments appeared much the same as the P10 mutant outer segments with only a short axoneme, while the wild-type controls had developed outer segments with many well-organized discs. We conclude that MKS3 is not important for formation of connecting cilium and rudimentary outer segments, but is critical for the maturation of outer segment processes.

  16. Up-regulation of tumor necrosis factor superfamily genes in early phases of photoreceptor degeneration.

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    Sem Genini

    Full Text Available We used quantitative real-time PCR to examine the expression of 112 genes related to retinal function and/or belonging to known pro-apoptotic, cell survival, and autophagy pathways during photoreceptor degeneration in three early-onset canine models of human photoreceptor degeneration, rod cone dysplasia 1 (rcd1, X-linked progressive retinal atrophy 2 (xlpra2, and early retinal degeneration (erd, caused respectively, by mutations in PDE6B, RPGRORF15, and STK38L. Notably, we found that expression and timing of differentially expressed (DE genes correlated with the cell death kinetics. Gene expression profiles of rcd1 and xlpra2 were similar; however rcd1 was more severe as demonstrated by the results of the TUNEL and ONL thickness analyses, a greater number of genes that were DE, and the identification of altered expression that occurred at earlier time points. Both diseases differed from erd, where a smaller number of genes were DE. Our studies did not highlight the potential involvement of mitochondrial or autophagy pathways, but all three diseases were accompanied by the down-regulation of photoreceptor genes, and up-regulation of several genes that belong to the TNF superfamily, the extrinsic apoptotic pathway, and pro-survival pathways. These proteins were expressed by different retinal cells, including horizontal, amacrine, ON bipolar, and Müller cells, and suggest an interplay between the dying photoreceptors and inner retinal cells. Western blot and immunohistochemistry results supported the transcriptional regulation for selected proteins. This study highlights a potential role for signaling through the extrinsic apoptotic pathway in early cell death events and suggests that retinal cells other than photoreceptors might play a primary or bystander role in the degenerative process.

  17. Circadian and Dopaminergic Regulation of Fatty Acid Oxidation Pathway Genes in Retina and Photoreceptor Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vancura, Patrick; Wolloscheck, Tanja; Baba, Kenkichi; Tosini, Gianluca; Iuvone, P. Michael; Spessert, Rainer

    2016-01-01

    The energy metabolism of the retina might comply with daily changes in energy demand and is impaired in diabetic retinopathy—one of the most common causes of blindness in Europe and the USA. The aim of this study was to investigate putative adaptation of energy metabolism in healthy and diabetic retina. Hence expression analysis of metabolic pathway genes was performed using quantitative polymerase chain reaction, semi-quantitative western blot and immunohistochemistry. Transcriptional profiling of key enzymes of energy metabolism identified transcripts of mitochondrial fatty acid β-oxidation enzymes, i.e. carnitine palmitoyltransferase-1α (Cpt-1α) and medium chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (Acadm) to display daily rhythms with peak values during daytime in preparations of the whole retina and microdissected photoreceptors. The cycling of both enzymes persisted in constant darkness, was dampened in mice deficient for dopamine D4 (D4) receptors and was altered in db/db mice—a model of diabetic retinopathy. The data of the present study are consistent with circadian clock-dependent and dopaminergic regulation of fatty acid oxidation in retina and its putative disturbance in diabetic retina. PMID:27727308

  18. FIZ1 is part of the regulatory protein complex on active photoreceptor-specific gene promoters in vivo

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    Chen Shiming

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background FIZ1 (Flt-3 Interacting Zinc-finger is a broadly expressed protein of unknown function. We reported previously that in the mammalian retina, FIZ1 interacts with NRL (Neural-Retina Leucine-zipper, an essential transcriptional activator of rod photoreceptor-specific genes. The concentration of FIZ1 in the retina increases during photoreceptor terminal maturation, when two key transcription factors NRL and CRX (Cone-Rod Homeobox become detectable on the promoters of photoreceptor-specific genes (i.e. Rhodopsin, Pde6b. To determine if FIZ1 is involved in regulating CRX-mediated transcriptional activation, we examined FIZ1 subcellular location in mouse neural retina, its ability to interact with CRX, and its association with CRX/NRL target genes. Results FIZ1 is present in the nucleus of adult photoreceptors as well as other retinal neurons as shown by transmission electron microscopy with nano-gold labeling. FIZ1 and CRX were co-precipitated from retinal nuclear extracts with antibodies to either protein. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP assays revealed that FIZ1 is part of the protein complex on several rod and cone gene promoters, within photoreceptor cells of the mouse retina. FIZ1 complexes with CRX or NRL on known NRL- and CRX-responsive elements, as shown by electrophoretic mobility shift assays with FIZ1 antibody. FIZ1 can directly bind to CRX, as demonstrated using yeast two-hybrid and GST pull-down assays. Co-transfection assays demonstrated that FIZ1 increases CRX-mediated activation of Opsin test promoters. Quantitative ChIP analysis revealed an increased association of FIZ1 with the Rhodopsin promoter in adult (P-25 neural retina versus immature (P-3 neural retina. The quantity of transcriptionally active RNA Polymerase-II within the Rhodopsin gene (Rho was significantly increased in the adult neural retina, compared to the immature retina. Conclusion FIZ1 directly interacts with CRX to enhance CRX

  19. Machine learning approaches to supporting the identification of photoreceptor-enriched genes based on expression data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simpson David

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Retinal photoreceptors are highly specialised cells, which detect light and are central to mammalian vision. Many retinal diseases occur as a result of inherited dysfunction of the rod and cone photoreceptor cells. Development and maintenance of photoreceptors requires appropriate regulation of the many genes specifically or highly expressed in these cells. Over the last decades, different experimental approaches have been developed to identify photoreceptor enriched genes. Recent progress in RNA analysis technology has generated large amounts of gene expression data relevant to retinal development. This paper assesses a machine learning methodology for supporting the identification of photoreceptor enriched genes based on expression data. Results Based on the analysis of publicly-available gene expression data from the developing mouse retina generated by serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE, this paper presents a predictive methodology comprising several in silico models for detecting key complex features and relationships encoded in the data, which may be useful to distinguish genes in terms of their functional roles. In order to understand temporal patterns of photoreceptor gene expression during retinal development, a two-way cluster analysis was firstly performed. By clustering SAGE libraries, a hierarchical tree reflecting relationships between developmental stages was obtained. By clustering SAGE tags, a more comprehensive expression profile for photoreceptor cells was revealed. To demonstrate the usefulness of machine learning-based models in predicting functional associations from the SAGE data, three supervised classification models were compared. The results indicated that a relatively simple instance-based model (KStar model performed significantly better than relatively more complex algorithms, e.g. neural networks. To deal with the problem of functional class imbalance occurring in the dataset, two data re

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  1. Harmonin (Ush1c is required in zebrafish Müller glial cells for photoreceptor synaptic development and function

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    Jennifer B. Phillips

    2011-11-01

    Usher syndrome is the most prevalent cause of hereditary deaf-blindness, characterized by congenital sensorineural hearing impairment and progressive photoreceptor degeneration beginning in childhood or adolescence. Diagnosis and management of this disease are complex, and the molecular changes underlying sensory cell impairment remain poorly understood. Here we characterize two zebrafish models for a severe form of Usher syndrome, Usher syndrome type 1C (USH1C: one model is a mutant with a newly identified ush1c nonsense mutation, and the other is a morpholino knockdown of ush1c. Both have defects in hearing, balance and visual function from the first week of life. Histological analyses reveal specific defects in sensory cell structure that are consistent with these behavioral phenotypes and could implicate Müller glia in the retinal pathology of Usher syndrome. This study shows that visual defects associated with loss of ush1c function in zebrafish can be detected from the onset of vision, and thus could be applicable to early diagnosis for USH1C patients.

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

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    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.

  3. Retinal photoreceptor fine structure in the red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis).

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    Braekevelt, C R

    1993-09-01

    The retinal photoreceptors of the red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) consist of rods, single cones and double (unequal) cones present in a ratio of about 2:1:5. In the light-adapted state, the rods are slender elongated cells with outer segments that reach to the retinal epithelial (RPE) cells. The inner segment displays an ellipsoid of mitochondria, plentiful polysomes, some rough ER and Golgi zones. The rod nucleus is located deep within the outer nuclear layer and the synaptic spherule displays both invaginated (ribbon) and superficial (conventional) synaptic sites. Single cones show a thin tapering outer segment, a large electron lucent oil droplet at the apex of the inner segment and an ellipsoid of mitochondria. Double cones consist of a larger chief member which displays a thin tapering outer segment and an electron dense oil droplet as well as a smaller accessory cone which shows no oil droplet, an ellipsoid and a paraboloid of glycogen. As in the single cone, polysomes, RER and Golgi zones are also noted in the inner segments of both members of the double cone. Near the external limiting membrane the chief and accessory cones show membrane specializations indicative of junctions on their contiguous surfaces. All cone photoreceptors are of a smaller diameter than is normally reported for avian species. Both single and double cones display several invaginated synapses as well as numerous superficial synaptic sites.

  4. The co-chaperone and reductase ERdj5 facilitates rod opsin biogenesis and quality control.

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    Athanasiou, Dimitra; Bevilacqua, Dalila; Aguila, Monica; McCulley, Caroline; Kanuga, Naheed; Iwawaki, Takao; Chapple, J Paul; Cheetham, Michael E

    2014-12-15

    Mutations in rhodopsin, the light-sensitive protein of rod cells, are the most common cause of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (ADRP). Many rod opsin mutations, such as P23H, lead to misfolding of rod opsin with detrimental effects on photoreceptor function and viability. Misfolded P23H rod opsin and other mutations in the intradiscal domain are characterized by the formation of an incorrect disulphide bond between C185 and C187, as opposed to the correct and highly conserved C110-C187 disulphide bond. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that incorrect disulphide bond formation might be a factor that affects the biogenesis of rod opsin by studying wild-type (WT) or P23H rod opsin in combination with amino acid substitutions that prevent the formation of incorrect disulphide bonds involving C185. These mutants had altered traffic dynamics, suggesting a requirement for regulation of disulphide bond formation/reduction during rod opsin biogenesis. Here, we show that the BiP co-chaperone and reductase protein ERdj5 (DNAJC10) regulates this process. ERdj5 overexpression promoted the degradation, improved the endoplasmic reticulum mobility and prevented the aggregation of P23H rod opsin. ERdj5 reduction by shRNA delayed rod opsin degradation and promoted aggregation. The reductase and co-chaperone activity of ERdj5 were both required for these effects on P23H rod opsin. Furthermore, mutations in these functional domains acted as dominant negatives that affected WT rod opsin biogenesis. Collectively, these data identify ERdj5 as a member of the proteostasis network that regulates rod opsin biogenesis and supports a role for disulphide bond formation/reduction in rod opsin biogenesis and disease.

  5. Role of spectraplakin in Drosophila photoreceptor morphogenesis.

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    Uyen Ngoc Mui

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Crumbs (Crb, a cell polarity gene, has been shown to provide a positional cue for the apical membrane domain and adherens junction during Drosophila photoreceptor morphogenesis. It has recently been found that stable microtubules in developing Drosophila photoreceptors were linked to Crb localization. Coordinated interactions between microtubule and actin cytoskeletons are involved in many polarized cellular processes. Since Spectraplakin is able to bind both microtubule and actin cytoskeletons, the role of Spectraplakin was analyzed in the regulations of apical Crb domain in developing Drosophila photoreceptors. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The localization pattern of Spectraplakin in developing pupal photoreceptors showed a unique intracellular distribution. Spectraplakin localized at rhabdomere terminal web which is at the basal side of the apical Crb or rhabdomere, and in between the adherens junctions. The spectraplakin mutant photoreceptors showed dramatic mislocalizations of Crb, adherens junctions, and the stable microtubules. This role of Spectraplakin in Crb and adherens junction regulation was further supported by spectraplakin's gain-of-function phenotype. Spectraplakin overexpression in photoreceptors caused a cell polarity defect including dramatic mislocalization of Crb, adherens junctions and the stable microtubules in the developing photoreceptors. Furthermore, a strong genetic interaction between spectraplakin and crb was found using a genetic modifier test. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: In summary, we found a unique localization of Spectraplakin in photoreceptors, and identified the role of spectraplakin in the regulation of the apical Crb domain and adherens junctions through genetic mutational analysis. Our data suggest that Spectraplakin, an actin-microtubule cross-linker, is essential in the apical and adherens junction controls during the photoreceptors morphogenesis.

  6. Combinatorial Regulation of Photoreceptor Differentiation Factor, Neural Retina Leucine Zipper Gene Nrl, Revealed by in Vivo Promoter Analysis*

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    Kautzmann, Marie-Audrey I.; Kim, Douglas S.; Felder-Schmittbuhl, Marie-Paule; Swaroop, Anand

    2011-01-01

    Development and homeostasis require stringent spatiotemporal control of gene expression patterns that are established, to a large extent, by combinatorial action of transcription regulatory proteins. The bZIP transcription factor NRL (neural retina leucine zipper) is critical for rod versus cone photoreceptor cell fate choice during retinal development and acts as a molecular switch to produce rods from postmitotic precursors. Loss of Nrl in mouse leads to a cone-only retina, whereas ectopic expression of Nrl in photoreceptor precursors generates rods. To decipher the transcriptional regulatory mechanisms upstream of Nrl, we identified putative cis-control elements in the Nrl promoter/enhancer region by examining cross-species sequence conservation. Using in vivo transfection of promoter-reporter constructs into the mouse retina, we show that a 0.9-kb sequence upstream of the Nrl transcription initiation site is sufficient to drive reporter gene expression in photoreceptors. We further define a 0.3-kb sequence including a proximal promoter (cluster A1) and an enhancer (cluster B) that can direct rod-specific expression in vivo. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays using mouse retinal nuclear extracts, in combination with specific antibodies, demonstrate the binding of retinoid-related orphan nuclear receptor β (RORβ), cone rod homeobox, orthodenticle homolog 2, and cyclic AMP response element-binding protein to predicted consensus elements within clusters A and B. Our studies demonstrate Nrl as a direct transcriptional target of RORβ and suggest that combinatorial action of multiple regulatory factors modulates the expression of Nrl in developing and mature retina. PMID:21673114

  7. Combinatorial regulation of photoreceptor differentiation factor, neural retina leucine zipper gene NRL, revealed by in vivo promoter analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kautzmann, Marie-Audrey I; Kim, Douglas S; Felder-Schmittbuhl, Marie-Paule; Swaroop, Anand

    2011-08-12

    Development and homeostasis require stringent spatiotemporal control of gene expression patterns that are established, to a large extent, by combinatorial action of transcription regulatory proteins. The bZIP transcription factor NRL (neural retina leucine zipper) is critical for rod versus cone photoreceptor cell fate choice during retinal development and acts as a molecular switch to produce rods from postmitotic precursors. Loss of Nrl in mouse leads to a cone-only retina, whereas ectopic expression of Nrl in photoreceptor precursors generates rods. To decipher the transcriptional regulatory mechanisms upstream of Nrl, we identified putative cis-control elements in the Nrl promoter/enhancer region by examining cross-species sequence conservation. Using in vivo transfection of promoter-reporter constructs into the mouse retina, we show that a 0.9-kb sequence upstream of the Nrl transcription initiation site is sufficient to drive reporter gene expression in photoreceptors. We further define a 0.3-kb sequence including a proximal promoter (cluster A1) and an enhancer (cluster B) that can direct rod-specific expression in vivo. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays using mouse retinal nuclear extracts, in combination with specific antibodies, demonstrate the binding of retinoid-related orphan nuclear receptor β (RORβ), cone rod homeobox, orthodenticle homolog 2, and cyclic AMP response element-binding protein to predicted consensus elements within clusters A and B. Our studies demonstrate Nrl as a direct transcriptional target of RORβ and suggest that combinatorial action of multiple regulatory factors modulates the expression of Nrl in developing and mature retina.

  8. Photoreceptor types, visual pigments, and topographic specializations in the retinas of hydrophiid sea snakes.

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    Hart, Nathan S; Coimbra, João Paulo; Collin, Shaun P; Westhoff, Guido

    2012-04-15

    Sea snakes have evolved numerous anatomical, physiological, and behavioral adaptations to suit their wholly aquatic lifestyle. However, although sea snakes use vision for foraging and mate selection, little is known about their visual abilities. We used microspectrophotometry, light microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy to characterize the retinal photoreceptors of spine-bellied (Lapemis curtus) and horned (Acalyptophis peronii) sea snakes. Both species have three types of visual pigment sensitive to short (SWS; wavelength of maximum absorbance, λmax 428-430 nm), medium (MWS; λmax 496 nm), and long wavelengths of light (LWS; λmax 555-559 nm) in each of three different subtypes of cone-like single photoreceptor. They also possess a cone-like double photoreceptor subtype, both the principal and accessory member of which contain the LWS visual pigment. Conventional rods were not observed, although the MWS photoreceptor may be a "transmuted" rod. We also used stereology to measure the total number and topographic distribution of neurons in the ganglion cell layer of L. curtus, the olive sea snake (Aipysurus laevis), and the olive-headed sea snake (Disteira major). All species have a horizontal visual streak with specialized areas in the nasal and temporal retina. Both L. curtus and D. major also have a specialized area in the ventral retina, which may reflect differences in habitat usage and/or foraging behavior compared to A. laevis. Maximal spatial resolution was estimated at 1.1, 1.6, and 2.3 cycles deg⁻¹ in D. major, L. curtus, and A. laevis, respectively; the superior value for A. laevis may reflect its specialized crevice-foraging hunting technique.

  9. Mitosis in neurons: Roughex and APC/C maintain cell cycle exit to prevent cytokinetic and axonal defects in Drosophila photoreceptor neurons.

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    Robert Ruggiero

    Full Text Available The mechanisms of cell cycle exit by neurons remain poorly understood. Through genetic and developmental analysis of Drosophila eye development, we found that the cyclin-dependent kinase-inhibitor Roughex maintains G1 cell cycle exit during differentiation of the R8 class of photoreceptor neurons. The roughex mutant neurons re-enter the mitotic cell cycle and progress without executing cytokinesis, unlike non-neuronal cells in the roughex mutant that perform complete cell divisions. After mitosis, the binucleated R8 neurons usually transport one daughter nucleus away from the cell body into the developing axon towards the brain in a kinesin-dependent manner resembling anterograde axonal trafficking. Similar cell cycle and photoreceptor neuron defects occurred in mutants for components of the Anaphase Promoting Complex/Cyclosome. These findings indicate a neuron-specific defect in cytokinesis and demonstrate a critical role for mitotic cyclin downregulation both to maintain cell cycle exit during neuronal differentiation and to prevent axonal defects following failed cytokinesis.

  10. Mitosis in neurons: Roughex and APC/C maintain cell cycle exit to prevent cytokinetic and axonal defects in Drosophila photoreceptor neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruggiero, Robert; Kale, Abhijit; Thomas, Barbara; Baker, Nicholas E

    2012-01-01

    The mechanisms of cell cycle exit by neurons remain poorly understood. Through genetic and developmental analysis of Drosophila eye development, we found that the cyclin-dependent kinase-inhibitor Roughex maintains G1 cell cycle exit during differentiation of the R8 class of photoreceptor neurons. The roughex mutant neurons re-enter the mitotic cell cycle and progress without executing cytokinesis, unlike non-neuronal cells in the roughex mutant that perform complete cell divisions. After mitosis, the binucleated R8 neurons usually transport one daughter nucleus away from the cell body into the developing axon towards the brain in a kinesin-dependent manner resembling anterograde axonal trafficking. Similar cell cycle and photoreceptor neuron defects occurred in mutants for components of the Anaphase Promoting Complex/Cyclosome. These findings indicate a neuron-specific defect in cytokinesis and demonstrate a critical role for mitotic cyclin downregulation both to maintain cell cycle exit during neuronal differentiation and to prevent axonal defects following failed cytokinesis.

  11. Sustained Delivery of Bioactive GDNF from Collagen and Alginate-Based Cell-Encapsulating Gel Promoted Photoreceptor Survival in an Inherited Retinal Degeneration Model.

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    Francisca S Y Wong

    Full Text Available Encapsulated-cell therapy (ECT is an attractive approach for continuously delivering freshly synthesized therapeutics to treat sight-threatening posterior eye diseases, circumventing repeated invasive intravitreal injections and improving local drug availability clinically. Composite collagen-alginate (CAC scaffold contains an interpenetrating network that integrates the physical and biological merits of its constituents, including biocompatibility, mild gelling properties and availability. However, CAC ECT properties and performance in the eye are not well-understood. Previously, we reported a cultured 3D CAC system that supported the growth of GDNF-secreting HEK293 cells with sustainable GDNF delivery. Here, the system was further developed into an intravitreally injectable gel with 1x104 or 2x105 cells encapsulated in 2mg/ml type I collagen and 1% alginate. Gels with lower alginate concentration yielded higher initial cell viability but faster spheroid formation while increasing initial cell density encouraged cell growth. Continuous GDNF delivery was detected in culture and in healthy rat eyes for at least 14 days. The gels were well-tolerated with no host tissue attachment and contained living cell colonies. Most importantly, gel-implanted in dystrophic Royal College of Surgeons rat eyes for 28 days retained photoreceptors while those containing higher initial cell number yielded better photoreceptor survival. CAC ECT gels offers flexible system design and is a potential treatment option for posterior eye diseases.

  12. RS9, a novel Nrf2 activator, attenuates light-induced death of cells of photoreceptor cells and Müller glia cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inoue, Yuki; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Noda, Yasuhiro; Nagano, Ryota; Otsuka, Tomohiro; Kuse, Yoshiki; Nakano, Yukimichi; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Nakagami, Yasuhiro; Hara, Hideaki

    2017-06-01

    The retina is highly sensitive to oxidative stress because of its high consumption of oxygen associated with the phototransductional processes. Recent findings have suggested that oxidative stress is involved in the pathology of age-related macular degeneration, a progressive degeneration of the central retina. A well-known environmental risk factor is light exposure, as excessive and continuous light exposure can damage photoreceptors. Nuclear factor-erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a transcriptional factor that controls antioxidative responses and phase 2 enzymes. Thus, we hypothesized that RS9, a specific activator of Nrf2, decreases light-induced retinal cell death in vivo and in vitro. Nrf2 was detected in the nucleus of the 661W cells exposed to RS9 and also after light exposure, and the Nrf2-antioxidant response element binding was increased in 661W cells after exposure to RS9. Consequentially, the expression of the phase 2 enzyme's mRNAs of Ho-1, Nqo-1, and Gclm genes was increased in 661W cells after exposure to RS9. Furthermore, RS9 decreased the light-induced death of 661W cells (2500 lux, 24 h), and also reduced the functional damages and the histological degeneration of the nuclei in the outer nuclear layer or the retina in the in vivo studies (8000 lux, 3 h). Heme oxygenase-1 was increased after light exposure, and Nrf2 was translocated into the nucleus after light exposure in vivo. Silencing of Ho-1 reduced the protective effects of RS9 against light-induced death of 661W cells. These findings indicate that RS9 has therapeutic potential for retinal diseases that are aggravated by light exposure. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  13. Absorption spectra and linear dichroism of some amphibian photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hárosi, F I

    1975-09-01

    Absorption spectra and linear dichroism of dark-adapted, isolated photoreceptors of mudpuppies, larval and adult tiger salamanders, and tropical toads were measured microspectrophotometrically. Spectral half-band width, dichroic ratio, and transverse specific density were determined using averaged polarized absorptance spectra and photomicrographs of seven types of rod outer segments. Two classes of cells were found, one with higher specific density and dichroic ratio, associable with the presence of rhodopsins, the other, lower in both quantities, associable with porphyropsins. Relationships were derived to calculate the product of molar concentration and extinction coefficient (CEmax) from specific density and dichroic ratio. By utilizing the hypothesis of invariance of oscillator strengths and measured half-band widths, Emax values were independently determined, permitting the calculation of C. The pigment concentration for all cells tested was about 3.5 mM. The broadness of green rod pigment spectra is correlated with reduced molar absorptivity and reduced cellular specific density. Estimation of physiological spectral sensitivities is discussed. Based on dichroic ratio considerations, a model is proposed for the orientation of retinals in situ which could account for the apparent degree of alignment of transition moments. In the chosen orientation, the ring portion of conjugation becomes primarily responsible for axial extinction. Reduced dichroism of dehydroretinal-bearing cells can thus result from the extended ring conjugation of chromophores. Some inferences derivable from the model are discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. Molecular cell biology and immunobiology of mammalian rod/ring structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carcamo, Wendy C; Calise, S John; von Mühlen, Carlos A; Satoh, Minoru; Chan, Edward K L

    2014-01-01

    Nucleotide biosynthesis is a highly regulated process necessary for cell growth and replication. Cytoplasmic structures in mammalian cells, provisionally described as rods and rings (RR), were identified by human autoantibodies and recently shown to include two key enzymes of the CTP/GTP biosynthetic pathways, cytidine triphosphate synthetase (CTPS) and inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH). Several studies have described CTPS filaments in mammalian cells, Drosophila, yeast, and bacteria. Other studies have identified IMPDH filaments in mammalian cells. Similarities among these studies point to a common evolutionarily conserved cytoplasmic structure composed of a subset of nucleotide biosynthetic enzymes. These structures appear to be a conserved metabolic response to decreased intracellular GTP and/or CTP pools. Antibodies to RR were found to develop in some hepatitis C patients treated with interferon-α and ribavirin. Additionally, the presence of anti-RR antibodies was correlated with poor treatment outcome.

  16. Hyperpolarization-activated current (I(h in ganglion-cell photoreceptors.

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    Matthew J Van Hook

    Full Text Available Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs express the photopigment melanopsin and serve as the primary retinal drivers of non-image-forming visual functions such as circadian photoentrainment, the pupillary light reflex, and suppression of melatonin production in the pineal. Past electrophysiological studies of these cells have focused on their intrinsic photosensitivity and synaptic inputs. Much less is known about their voltage-gated channels and how these might shape their output to non-image-forming visual centers. Here, we show that rat ipRGCs retrolabeled from the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN express a hyperpolarization-activated inwardly-rectifying current (I(h. This current is blocked by the known I(h blockers ZD7288 and extracellular cesium. As in other systems, including other retinal ganglion cells, I(h in ipRGCs is characterized by slow kinetics and a slightly greater permeability for K(+ than for Na(+. Unlike in other systems, however, I(h in ipRGCs apparently does not actively contribute to resting membrane potential. We also explore non-specific effects of the common I(h blocker ZD7288 on rebound depolarization and evoked spiking and discuss possible functional roles of I(h in non-image-forming vision. This study is the first to characterize I(h in a well-defined population of retinal ganglion cells, namely SCN-projecting ipRGCs.

  17. Proteomics of photoreceptor outer segments identifies a subset of SNARE and Rab proteins implicated in membrane vesicle trafficking and fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, Michael C M; Holopainen, Juha M; Molday, Laurie L; Foster, Leonard J; Molday, Robert S

    2008-06-01

    The outer segment is a specialized compartment of vertebrate rod and cone photoreceptor cells where phototransduction takes place. In rod cells it consists of an organized stack of disks enclosed by a separate plasma membrane. Although most proteins involved in phototransduction have been identified and characterized, little is known about the proteins that are responsible for outer segment structure and renewal. In this study we used a tandem mass spectrometry-based proteomics approach to identify proteins in rod outer segment preparations as an initial step in defining their roles in photoreceptor structure, function, renewal, and degeneration. Five hundred and sixteen proteins were identified including 41 proteins that function in rod and cone phototransduction and the visual cycle and most proteins previously shown to be involved in outer segment structure and metabolic pathways. In addition, numerous proteins were detected that have not been previously reported to be present in outer segments including a subset of Rab and SNARE proteins implicated in vesicle trafficking and membrane fusion. Western blotting and immunofluorescence microscopy confirmed the presence of Rab 11b, Rab 18, Rab 1b, and Rab GDP dissociation inhibitor in outer segments. The SNARE proteins, VAMP2/3, syntaxin 3, N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor, and Munc 18 detected in outer segment preparations by mass spectrometry and Western blotting were also observed in outer segments by immunofluorescence microscopy. Syntaxin 3 and N-ethylmaleimide- sensitive factor had a restricted localization at the base of the outer segments, whereas VAMP2/3 and Munc 18 were distributed throughout the outer segments. These results suggest that Rab and SNARE proteins play a role in vesicle trafficking and membrane fusion as part of the outer segment renewal process. The data set generated in this study is a valuable resource for further analysis of photoreceptor outer segment structure and function.

  18. Eyes shut homolog is required for maintaining the ciliary pocket and survival of photoreceptors in zebrafish

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    Miao Yu

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Mutations in the extracellular matrix protein eyes shut homolog (EYS cause photoreceptor degeneration in patients with retinitis pigmentosa 25 (RP25. Functions of EYS remain poorly understood, due in part to the lack of an EYS gene in mouse. We investigated the localization of vertebrate EYS proteins and engineered loss-of-function alleles in zebrafish. Immunostaining indicated that EYS localized near the connecting cilium/transition zone in photoreceptors. EYS also strongly localized to the cone outer segments and weakly to the rod outer segments and cone terminals in primate retinas. Analysis of mutant EYS zebrafish revealed disruption of the ciliary pocket in cone photoreceptors, indicating that EYS is required for maintaining the integrity of the ciliary pocket lumen. Mutant zebrafish exhibited progressive loss of cone and rod photoreceptors. Our results indicate that EYS protein localization is species-dependent and that EYS is required for maintaining ciliary pocket morphology and survival of photoreceptors in zebrafish.

  19. Characterizing and modeling the intrinsic light response of rat ganglion-cell photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walch, Olivia J; Zhang, L Samantha; Reifler, Aaron N; Dolikian, Michael E; Forger, Daniel B; Wong, Kwoon Y

    2015-11-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) mediate both image-forming vision and non-image-forming visual responses such as pupillary constriction and circadian photoentrainment. Five types of ipRGCs, named M1-M5, have been discovered in rodents. To further investigate their photoresponse properties, we made multielectrode array spike recordings from rat ipRGCs, classified them into M1, M2/M4, and M3/M5 clusters, and measured their intrinsic, melanopsin-based responses to single and flickering light pulses. Results showed that ipRGC spiking can track flickers up to ∼0.2 Hz in frequency and that flicker intervals between 5 and 14 s evoke the most spikes. We also learned that melanopsin's integration time is intensity and cluster dependent. Using these data, we constructed a mathematical model for each cluster's intrinsic photoresponse. We found that the data for the M1 cluster are best fit by a model that assumes a large photoresponse, causing the cell to enter depolarization block. Our models also led us to hypothesize that the M2/M4 and M3/M5 clusters experience comparable photoexcitation but that the M3/M5 cascade decays significantly faster than the M2/M4 cascade, resulting in different response waveforms between these clusters. These mathematical models will help predict how each ipRGC cluster might respond to stimuli of any waveform and could inform the invention of lighting technologies that promote health through melanopsin stimulation.

  20. Magnetic engineering of stable rod-shaped stem cell aggregates: circumventing the pitfall of self-bending.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, V; Fayol, D; Reffay, M; Luciani, N; Bacri, J-C; Gay, C; Wilhelm, C

    2015-02-01

    A current challenge for tissue engineering while restoring the function of diseased or damaged tissue is to customize the tissue according to the target area. Scaffold-free approaches usually yield spheroid shapes with the risk of necrosis at the center due to poor nutrient and oxygen diffusion. Here, we used magnetic forces developed at the cellular scale by miniaturized magnets to create rod-shaped aggregates of stem cells that subsequently matured into a tissue-like structure. However, during the maturation process, the tissue-rods spontaneously bent and coiled into sphere-like structures, triggered by the increasing cell-cell adhesion within the initially non-homogeneous tissue. Optimisation of the intra-tissular magnetic forces successfully hindered the transition, in order to produce stable rod-shaped stem cells aggregates.

  1. Efficacy of 670 nm Light Therapy to Protect against Photoreceptor Cell Death Is Dependent on the Severity of Damage

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    Joshua A. Chu-Tan

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Photobiomodulation at a wavelength of 670 nm has been shown to be effective in preventing photoreceptor cell death in the retina. We treated Sprague-Dawley (SD rats with varying doses of 670 nm light (9; 18; 36; 90 J/cm2 before exposing them to different intensities of damaging white light (750; 1000; 1500 lux. 670 nm light exhibited a biphasic response in its amelioration of cell death in light-induced degeneration in vivo. Lower light damage intensities required lower doses of 670 nm light to reduce TUNEL cell death. At higher damage intensities, the highest dose of 670 nm light showed protection. In vitro, the Seahorse XFe96 Extracellular Flux Analyzer revealed that 670 nm light directly influences mitochondrial metabolism by increasing the spare respiratory capacity of mitochondria in 661 W photoreceptor-like cells in light damaged conditions. Our findings further support the use of 670 nm light as an effective treatment against retinal degeneration as well as shedding light on the mechanism of protection through the increase of the mitochondrial spare respiratory capacity.

  2. Functional ectopic neuritogenesis by retinal rod bipolar cells is regulated by miR-125b-5p during retinal remodeling in RCS rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Yan; Hou, Baoke; Weng, Chuanhuang; Liu, Weiping; Dai, Jiaman; Zhao, Congjian; Yin, Zheng Qin

    2017-04-21

    Following retinal degeneration, retinal remodeling can cause neuronal microcircuits to undergo structural alterations, which particularly affect the dendrites of bipolar cells. However, the mechanisms and functional consequences of such changes remain unclear. Here, we used Royal College of Surgeon (RCS) rats as a model of retinal degeneration, to study structural changes in rod bipolar cells (RBCs) and the underlying mechanisms of these changes. We found that, with retinal degeneration, RBC dendrites extended into the outer nuclear layer (ONL) of the retina, and the ectopic dendrites formed synapses with the remaining photoreceptors. This ectopic neuritogenesis was associated with brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) - expression of which was negatively regulated by miR-125b-5p. Overexpression of miR-125b-5p in the retinae of RCS rats diminished RBC ectopic dendrites, and compromised the b-wave of the flash electroretinogram (ERG). In contrast, down-regulation of miR-125b-5p (or exogenous BDNF treatment) increased RBC ectopic dendrites, and improved b-wave. Furthermore, we showed that the regulation of ectopic neuritogenesis by BDNF occurred via the downstream modulation of the TrkB-CREB signaling pathway. Based on these findings, we conclude that ectopic dendrites are likely to be providing functional benefits and that, in RCS rats, miR-125b-5p regulates ectopic neuritogenesis by RBCs through modulation of the BDNF-TrkB-CREB pathway. This suggests that therapies that reduce miR-125b-5p expression could be beneficial in human retinal degenerative disease.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Loss of the metalloprotease ADAM9 leads to cone-rod dystrophy in humans and retinal degeneration in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parry, David A; Toomes, Carmel; Bida, Lina; Danciger, Michael; Towns, Katherine V; McKibbin, Martin; Jacobson, Samuel G; Logan, Clare V; Ali, Manir; Bond, Jacquelyn; Chance, Rebecca; Swendeman, Steven; Daniele, Lauren L; Springell, Kelly; Adams, Matthew; Johnson, Colin A; Booth, Adam P; Jafri, Hussain; Rashid, Yasmin; Banin, Eyal; Strom, Tim M; Farber, Debora B; Sharon, Dror; Blobel, Carl P; Pugh, Edward N; Pierce, Eric A; Inglehearn, Chris F

    2009-05-01

    Cone-rod dystrophy (CRD) is an inherited progressive retinal dystrophy affecting the function of cone and rod photoreceptors. By autozygosity mapping, we identified null mutations in the ADAM metallopeptidase domain 9 (ADAM9) gene in four consanguineous families with recessively inherited early-onset CRD. We also found reduced photoreceptor responses in Adam9 knockout mice, previously reported to be asymptomatic. In 12-month-old knockout mice, photoreceptors appear normal, but the apical processes of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells are disorganized and contact between photoreceptor outer segments (POSs) and the RPE apical surface is compromised. In 20-month-old mice, there is clear evidence of progressive retinal degeneration with disorganized POS and thinning of the outer nuclear layer (ONL) in addition to the anomaly at the POS-RPE junction. RPE basal deposits and macrophages were also apparent in older mice. These findings therefore not only identify ADAM9 as a CRD gene but also identify a form of pathology wherein retinal disease first manifests at the POS-RPE junction.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  6. [The role of the glial cells in the maintenance of the ionic environment of the photoreceptors of the retina of the drone (author's transl)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsacopoulos, M; Coles, J A

    1978-04-01

    A double-barrelled potassium sensitive microelectrode was used to record electrical potentials and K+ activities in the retina of the drone Apis Mellifera during stimulation with trains of flashes, 1 per sec, intense enough to produce receptor potentials of near maximal amplitude. During the stimulation photoreceptors lose about 25% of their intracellular potassium concentration. During stimulation the potassium activity in the extracellular space increased transitorily up to 20 mM and then fell to a plateau. By this time the potassium concentration increased by about 20% in the glial cells. These results suggest that the glial cells may participate in the regulation of K+ activity in the extracellular space. The increase of potassium activity in the glial cells may be a stimulus for activation of cellular metabolism.

  7. Protective effects of bilberry and lingonberry extracts against blue light-emitting diode light-induced retinal photoreceptor cell damage in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogawa, Kenjirou; Kuse, Yoshiki; Tsuruma, Kazuhiro; Kobayashi, Saori; Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Hara, Hideaki

    2014-04-02

    Blue light is a high-energy or short-wavelength visible light, which induces retinal diseases such as age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa. Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) and lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea) contain high amounts of polyphenols (anthocyanins, resveratrol, and proanthocyanidins) and thus confer health benefits. This study aimed to determine the protective effects and mechanism of action of bilberry extract (B-ext) and lingonberry extract (L-ext) and their active components against blue light-emitting diode (LED) light-induced retinal photoreceptor cell damage. Cultured murine photoreceptor (661 W) cells were exposed to blue LED light following treatment with B-ext, L-ext, or their constituents (cyanidin, delphinidin, malvidin, trans-resveratrol, and procyanidin B2). 661 W cell viability was assessed using a tetrazolium salt (WST-8) assay and Hoechst 33342 nuclear staining, and intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) production was determined using CM-H2DCFDA after blue LED light exposure. Activation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38 MAPK), nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB), and LC3, an ubiquitin-like protein that is necessary for the formation of autophagosomes, were analyzed using Western blotting. Caspase-3/7 activation caused by blue LED light exposure in 661 W cells was determined using a caspase-3/7 assay kit. B-ext, L-ext, NAC, and their active components improved the viability of 661 W cells and inhibited the generation of intracellular ROS induced by blue LED light irradiation. Furthermore, B-ext and L-ext inhibited the activation of p38 MAPK and NF-κB induced by blue LED light exposure. Finally, B-ext, L-ext, and NAC inhibited caspase-3/7 activation and autophagy. These findings suggest that B-ext and L-ext containing high amounts of polyphenols exert protective effects against blue LED light-induced retinal photoreceptor cell damage mainly through inhibition of ROS production and activation of

  8. Control of Ca2+ in rod outer segment disks by light and cyclic GMP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, J S; Hagins, W A

    1983-05-26

    Photons absorbed in vertebrate rods and cones probably cause electrochemical changes at the photoreceptor plasma membrane by changing the cytoplasmic concentration of a diffusible transmitter substance, reducing the Na+ current flowing into the outer segment of the cell in the dark, to produce the observed membrane hyperpolarization that is the initial excitatory response. Cyclic GMP has been proposed as the transmitter because a light-activated cyclic GMP phosphodiesterase (PDE) has been found in rod disk membranes and because intracellularly injected cyclic GMP reduces rod membrane potentials. Free Ca2+ has also been proposed because increasing external [Ca2+] quickly and reversibly reduces the dark current and divalent cationophores increase the Ca2+ sensitivity. Ca2+ efflux from rod outer segments (ROS) of intact retinas occurs simultaneously with light responses. Vesicles prepared from ROS disk membranes become more permeable on illumination, releasing trapped ions or molecules, but intact outer segment disks have not previously been found to store sufficient Ca2+ in darkness and to release enough in light to meet the theoretical requirements for control of the dark current by varying cytoplasmic Ca2+ (refs 14-18). We now report experiments that show the required Ca2+ storage and release from rod disk membranes suspended in media containing high-energy phosphate esters and electrolytes approximating the cytoplasmic composition of live rod cells. Cyclic GMP stimulates Ca2+ uptake by ROS disks in such media.

  9. Method to Remove Photoreceptors from Wholemount Retina in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walston, Steven T; Chang, Yao-Chuan; Weiland, James D; Chow, Robert H

    2017-08-30

    Patch clamp recordings of neurons in the inner nuclear layer of the retina are difficult to conduct in a wholemount retina preparation because surrounding neurons block the path of the patch pipette. Vertical slice preparations or dissociated retina cell cultures provide access to bipolar cells at the cost of severing lateral connection between neurons. We have developed a technique to remove photoreceptors from the rodent retina that exposes inner nuclear layer neurons, allowing access for patch clamp recording. Repeated application and removal of filter paper to the photoreceptor side of an isolated retina effectively and efficiently removes photoreceptor cells and, in degenerate retina, hypertrophied Müller cell endfeet. Live-dead assays applied to neurons remaining after photoreceptor removal demonstrated mostly viable cells. Patch clamp recordings from bipolar cells reveal responses similar to those recorded in traditional slice and dissociated cell preparations. An advantage of the photoreceptor peel technique is that it exposes inner retinal neurons in a wholemount retina preparation for investigation of signal processing. A disadvantage is that photoreceptor removal alters input to remaining retinal neurons. The technique may be useful for investigations of extracellular electrical stimulation, photoreceptor DNA analysis, and non-pharmacological removal of light input. Copyright © 2017, Journal of Neurophysiology.

  10. Light adaptation and the evolution of vertebrate photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morshedian, Ala; Fain, Gordon L

    2017-07-15

    Lamprey are cyclostomes, a group of vertebrates that diverged from lines leading to jawed vertebrates (including mammals) in the late Cambrian, 500 million years ago. It may therefore be possible to infer properties of photoreceptors in early vertebrate progenitors by comparing lamprey to other vertebrates. We show that lamprey rods and cones respond to light much like rods and cones in amphibians and mammals. They operate over a similar range of light intensities and adapt to backgrounds and bleaches nearly identically. These correspondences are pervasive and detailed; they argue for the presence of rods and cones very early in the evolution of vertebrates with properties much like those of rods and cones in existing vertebrate species. The earliest vertebrates were agnathans - fish-like organisms without jaws, which first appeared near the end of the Cambrian radiation. One group of agnathans became cyclostomes, which include lamprey and hagfish. Other agnathans gave rise to jawed vertebrates or gnathostomes, the group including all other existing vertebrate species. Because cyclostomes diverged from other vertebrates 500 million years ago, it may be possible to infer some of the properties of the retina of early vertebrate progenitors by comparing lamprey to other vertebrates. We have previously shown that rods and cones in lamprey respond to light much like photoreceptors in other vertebrates and have a similar sensitivity. We now show that these affinities are even closer. Both rods and cones adapt to background light and to bleaches in a manner almost identical to other vertebrate photoreceptors. The operating range in darkness is nearly the same in lamprey and in amphibian or mammalian rods and cones; moreover background light shifts response-intensity curves downward and to the right over a similar range of ambient intensities. Rods show increment saturation at about the same intensity as mammalian rods, and cones never saturate. Bleaches decrease

  11. Cone rod dystrophies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamel Christian P

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract 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

  12. Overexpressed or intraperitoneally injected human transferrin prevents photoreceptor degeneration in rd10 mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, Emilie; Jonet, Laurent; Sergeant, Claire; Vesvres, Marie-Hélène; Behar-Cohen, Francine; Courtois, Yves; Jeanny, Jean-Claude

    2010-12-08

    Retinal degeneration has been associated with iron accumulation in age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and in several rodent models that had one or several iron regulating protein impairments. We investigated the iron concentration and the protective role of human transferrin (hTf) in rd10 mice, a model of retinal degeneration. The proton-induced X-ray emission (PIXE) method was used to quantify iron in rd10 mice 2, 3, and 4 weeks after birth. We generated mice with the β-phosphodiesterase mutation and hTf expression by crossbreeding rd10 mice with TghTf mice (rd10/hTf mice). The photoreceptor loss and apoptosis were evaluated by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling in 3-week-old rd10/hTf mice and compared with 3-week-old rd10 mice. The neuroprotective effect of hTf was analyzed in 5-day-old rd10 mice treated by intraperitoneal administration with hTf for up to 25 days. The retinal hTf concentrations and the thickness of the outer nuclear layer were quantified in all treated mice at 25 days postnatally. PIXE analysis demonstrated an age-dependent iron accumulation in the photoreceptors of rd10 mice. The rd10/hTf mice had the rd10 mutation, expressed high levels of hTf, and showed a significant decrease in photoreceptor death. In addition, rd10 mice intraperitoneally treated with hTf resulted in the retinal presence of hTf and a dose-dependent reduction in photoreceptor degeneration. Our results suggest that iron accumulation in the retinas of rd10 mutant mice is associated with photoreceptor degeneration. For the first time, the enhanced survival of cones and rods in the retina of this model has been demonstrated through overexpression or systemic administration of hTf. This study highlights the therapeutic potential of Tf to inhibit iron-induced photoreceptor cell death observed in degenerative diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration.

  13. Rod and cone pathway signalling is altered in the P2X7 receptor knock out mouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirstan A Vessey

    Full Text Available The P2X7 receptor (P2X7-R is expressed in the retina and brain and has been implicated in neurodegenerative diseases. However, whether it is expressed by neurons and plays a role as a neurotransmitter receptor has been the subject of controversy. In this study, we first show that the novel vesicular transporter for ATP, VNUT, is expressed in the retina, verifying the presence of the molecular machinery for ATP to act as neurotransmitter at P2X7-Rs. Secondly we show the presence of P2X7-R mRNA and protein in the retina and cortex and absence of the full length variant 1 of the receptor in the P2X7-R knock out (P2X7-KO mouse. The role of the P2X7-R in neuronal function of the retina was assessed by comparing the electroretinogram response of P2X7-KO with WT mice. The rod photoreceptor response was found to be similar, while both rod and cone pathway post-photoreceptor responses were significantly larger in P2X7-KO mice. This suggests that activation of P2X7-Rs modulates output of second order retinal neurons. In line with this finding, P2X7-Rs were found in the outer plexiform layer and on inner retinal cell classes, including horizontal, amacrine and ganglion cells. The receptor co-localized with conventional synapses in the IPL and was expressed on amacrine cells post-synaptic to rod bipolar ribbon synapses. In view of the changes in visual function in the P2X7-KO mouse and the immunocytochemical location of the receptor in the normal retina, it is likely the P2X7-R provides excitatory input to photoreceptor terminals or to inhibitory cells that shape both the rod and cone pathway response.

  14. Control of guanylate cyclase activity in the rod outer segment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pannbacker, R G

    1973-12-14

    Mammalian photoreceptors contain a guanylate cyclase which has a high specific activity and is inhibited by exposure of the rod outer segment to light. Several minutes are required for this inhibition to take effect, indicating that it is not a step in visual excitation. The activity of the enzyme is sensitive to the concentration of calcium ion in the medium, suggesting that light-induced changes in calcium distribution in the photoreceptor could control guanylate cyclase activity.

  15. Double-labeling techniques demonstrate that rod bipolar cells are under GABAergic control in the inner plexiform layer of the rat retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, I B; Lee, M Y; Oh, S; Kim, K Y; Chun, M

    1998-04-01

    The synaptic connectivity between rod bipolar cells and GABAergic neurons in the inner plexiform layer (IPL) of the rat retina was studied using two immunocytochemical markers. Rod bipolar cells were stained with an antibody specific for protein kinase C (PKC, alpha isoenzyme), and GABAergic neurons were stained with an antiserum specific for glutamic-acid decarboxylase (GAD). Some amacrine cells were also labeled with the anti-PKC antiserum. All PKC-labeled amacrine cells examined showed GABA immunoreactivity, indicating that PKC-labeled amacrine cells constitute a subpopulation of GABAergic amacrine cells in the rat retina. A total of 150 ribbon synapses established by rod bipolar cells were observed in the IPL. One member of the postsynaptic dyads was always an unlabeled AII amacrine cell process, and the other belonged to an amacrine-cell process showing GAD immunoreactivity. The majority (n=92) (61.3%) of these processes made reciprocal synapses back to the axon terminals of rod bipolar cells. In addition, 78 conventional synapses onto rod bipolar axons were observed, and among them 52 (66.7%) were GAD-immunoreactive. Thus GABA provides the major inhibitory input to rod bipolar cells.

  16. Integrity of the cone photoreceptor mosaic in oligocone trichromacy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Michaelides, Michel; Rha, Jungtae; Dees, Elise W;

    2011-01-01

    Oligocone trichromacy (OT) is an unusual cone dysfunction syndrome characterized by reduced visual acuity, mild photophobia, reduced amplitude of the cone electroretinogram with normal rod responses, normal fundus appearance, and normal or near-normal color vision. It has been proposed that these...... that these patients have a reduced number of normal functioning cones (oligocone). This paper has sought to evaluate the integrity of the cone photoreceptor mosaic in four patients previously described as having OT....

  17. Investigating photoreceptor densities, potential visual acuity, and cone mosaics of shallow water, temperate fish species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, D E; Rawlinson, N J F; Thomas, G A; Cobcroft, J M

    2015-06-01

    The eye is an important sense organ for teleost species but can vary greatly depending on the adaption to the habitat, environment during ontogeny and developmental stage of the fish. The eye and retinal morphology of eight commonly caught trawl bycatch species were described: Lepidotrigla mulhalli; Lophonectes gallus; Platycephalus bassensis; Sillago flindersi; Neoplatycephalus richardsoni; Thamnaconus degeni; Parequula melbournensis; and Trachurus declivis. The cone densities ranged from 38 cones per 0.01 mm(2) for S. flindersi to 235 cones per 0.01 mm(2) for P. melbournensis. The rod densities ranged from 22800 cells per 0.01 mm(2) for L. mulhalli to 76634 cells per 0.01 mm(2) for T. declivis and potential visual acuity (based on anatomical measures) ranged from 0.08 in L. gallus to 0.31 in P. melbournensis. Higher rod densities were correlated with maximum habitat depths. Six species had the regular pattern of four double cones arranged around a single cone in the photoreceptor mosaic, while T. declivis had only rows of double cones. P. melbournensis had the greatest potential ability for detecting fine detail based on eye anatomy. The potential visual acuity estimates and rod densities can be applied to suggest the relative detection ability of different species in a commercial fishing context, since vision is a critical sense in an illuminated environment for perceiving an oncoming trawl.

  18. Rod and Rod-driven Function in Achromatopsia and Blue Cone Monochromatism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moskowitz, Anne; Hansen, Ronald M.; Akula, James D.; Eklund, Susan E.; Fulton, Anne B.

    2008-01-01

    Purpose To evaluate rod photoreceptor and postreceptor retinal function in pediatric patients with achromatopsia (ACHR) and blue cone monochromatism (BCM) using contemporary electroretinographic (ERG) procedures. Methods Fifteen patients (age 1 to 20 years) with ACHR and six patients (age 4 to 22 years) with BCM were studied. ERG responses to full-field stimuli were obtained in scotopic and photopic conditions. Rod photoreceptor (Srod, Rrod) and rod-driven postreceptor (log σ, Vmax) response parameters were calculated from the a-wave and b-wave. The ERG records were digitally filtered to demonstrate the oscillatory potentials (OPs); a sensitivity parameter, log SOPA1/2, and an amplitude parameter, SOPAmax, were used to characterize the OP response. Response parameters were compared to those of 12 normal control subjects. Results As expected, photopic responses were non-detectable in patients with ACHR and BCM. In addition, mean scotopic photoreceptor (Rrod) and postreceptor (Vmax and SOPAmax) amplitude parameters were significantly reduced compared to those in normal controls. The flash intensity required to evoke a half maximum b-wave amplitude (log σ) was significantly increased. Conclusions The results of this study provide evidence that deficits in rod and rod mediated function occur in the primary cone dysfunction syndromes, achromatopsia and blue cone monochromatism. PMID:18824728

  19. Identifying photoreceptors in blind eyes caused by RPE65 mutations: Prerequisite for human gene therapy success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Samuel G; Aleman, Tomas S; Cideciyan, Artur V; Sumaroka, Alexander; Schwartz, Sharon B; Windsor, Elizabeth A M; Traboulsi, Elias I; Heon, Elise; Pittler, Steven J; Milam, Ann H; Maguire, Albert M; Palczewski, Krzysztof; Stone, Edwin M; Bennett, Jean

    2005-04-26

    Mutations in RPE65, a gene essential to normal operation of the visual (retinoid) cycle, cause the childhood blindness known as Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA). Retinal gene therapy restores vision to blind canine and murine models of LCA. Gene therapy in blind humans with LCA from RPE65 mutations may also have potential for success but only if the retinal photoreceptor layer is intact, as in the early-disease stage-treated animals. Here, we use high-resolution in vivo microscopy to quantify photoreceptor layer thickness in the human disease to define the relationship of retinal structure to vision and determine the potential for gene therapy success. The normally cone photoreceptor-rich central retina and rod-rich regions were studied. Despite severely reduced cone vision, many RPE65-mutant retinas had near-normal central microstructure. Absent rod vision was associated with a detectable but thinned photoreceptor layer. We asked whether abnormally thinned RPE65-mutant retina with photoreceptor loss would respond to treatment. Gene therapy in Rpe65(-/-) mice at advanced-disease stages, a more faithful mimic of the humans we studied, showed success but only in animals with better-preserved photoreceptor structure. The results indicate that identifying and then targeting retinal locations with retained photoreceptors will be a prerequisite for successful gene therapy in humans with RPE65 mutations and in other retinal degenerative disorders now moving from proof-of-concept studies toward clinical trials.

  20. Coupling ex vivo electroporation of mouse retinas and luciferase reporter assays to assess rod-specific promoter activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boulling, Arnaud; Escher, Pascal

    2016-07-01

    Ex vivo electroporation of mouse retinas is an established tool to modulate gene expression and to study cell type-specific gene expression. Here we coupled ex vivo electroporation to luciferase reporter assays to facilitate the study of rod-photoreceptor-specific gene promoters. The activity of the rod-specific proximal bovine rhodopsin promoter was significantly increased in C57BL/6J wild-type retinas at postnatal days 1 and 7 by 3.4-fold and 8.7-fold respectively. In C57BL/6J Nr2e3(rd7/rd7) retinas, where the rod photoreceptor-specific nuclear receptor Nr2e3 is not expressed, a significant increase by 2.5-fold was only observed at postnatal day 7. Cone-specific S-opsin promoter activity was not modulated in C57BL/6J wild-type and Nr2e3(rd7/rd7) retinas. Taken together, we describe an easily implementable protocol to assess rod-specific promoter activity in a physiological context resembling that of the developing postnatal mouse retina.

  1. Abrupt onset of mutations in a developmentally regulated gene during terminal differentiation of post-mitotic photoreceptor neurons in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivette M Sandoval

    Full Text Available For sensitive detection of rare gene repair events in terminally differentiated photoreceptors, we generated a knockin mouse model by replacing one mouse rhodopsin allele with a form of the human rhodopsin gene that causes a severe, early-onset form of retinitis pigmentosa. The human gene contains a premature stop codon at position 344 (Q344X, cDNA encoding the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP at its 3' end, and a modified 5' untranslated region to reduce translation rate so that the mutant protein does not induce retinal degeneration. Mutations that eliminate the stop codon express a human rhodopsin-EGFP fusion protein (hRho-GFP, which can be readily detected by fluorescence microscopy. Spontaneous mutations were observed at a frequency of about one per retina; in every case, they gave rise to single fluorescent rod cells, indicating that each mutation occurred during or after the last mitotic division. Additionally, the number of fluorescent rods did not increase with age, suggesting that the rhodopsin gene in mature rod cells is less sensitive to mutation than it is in developing rods. Thus, there is a brief developmental window, coinciding with the transcriptional activation of the rhodopsin locus, in which somatic mutations of the rhodopsin gene abruptly begin to appear.

  2. Acute Zonal Cone Photoreceptor Outer Segment Loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aleman, Tomas S; Sandhu, Harpal S; Serrano, Leona W; Traband, Anastasia; Lau, Marisa K; Adamus, Grazyna; Avery, Robert A

    2017-05-01

    The diagnostic path presented narrows down the cause of acute vision loss to the cone photoreceptor outer segment and will refocus the search for the cause of similar currently idiopathic conditions. To describe the structural and functional associations found in a patient with acute zonal occult photoreceptor loss. A case report of an adolescent boy with acute visual field loss despite a normal fundus examination performed at a university teaching hospital. Results of a complete ophthalmic examination, full-field flash electroretinography (ERG) and multifocal ERG, light-adapted achromatic and 2-color dark-adapted perimetry, and microperimetry. Imaging was performed with spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT), near-infrared (NIR) and short-wavelength (SW) fundus autofluorescence (FAF), and NIR reflectance (REF). The patient was evaluated within a week of the onset of a scotoma in the nasal field of his left eye. Visual acuity was 20/20 OU, and color vision was normal in both eyes. Results of the fundus examination and of SW-FAF and NIR-FAF imaging were normal in both eyes, whereas NIR-REF imaging showed a region of hyporeflectance temporal to the fovea that corresponded with a dense relative scotoma noted on light-adapted static perimetry in the left eye. Loss in the photoreceptor outer segment detected by SD-OCT co-localized with an area of dense cone dysfunction detected on light-adapted perimetry and multifocal ERG but with near-normal rod-mediated vision according to results of 2-color dark-adapted perimetry. Full-field flash ERG findings were normal in both eyes. The outer nuclear layer and inner retinal thicknesses were normal. Localized, isolated cone dysfunction may represent the earliest photoreceptor abnormality or a distinct entity within the acute zonal occult outer retinopathy complex. Acute zonal occult outer retinopathy should be considered in patients with acute vision loss and abnormalities on NIR-REF imaging, especially if

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barone, Ilaria; Novelli, Elena; Strettoi, Enrica

    2014-01-01

    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. 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. 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 year of age showed major

  4. Electrostatics of cell membrane recognition: structure and activity of neutral and cationic rigid push-pull rods in isoelectric, anionic, and polarized lipid bilayer membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakai, N; Gerard, D; Matile, S

    2001-03-21

    Design, synthesis, and structural and functional studies of rigid-rod ionophores of different axial electrostatic asymmetry are reported. The employed design strategy emphasized presence of (a) a rigid scaffold to minimize the conformational complexity, (b) a unimolecular ion-conducting pathway to minimize the suprastructural complexity and monitor the function, (c) an extended fluorophore to monitor structure, (d) variable axial rod dipole, and (e) variable terminal charges to create axial asymmetry. Studies in isoelectric, anionic, and polarized bilayer membranes confirmed a general increase in activity of uncharged rigid push-pull rods in polarized bilayers. The similarly increased activity of cationic rigid push-pull rods with an electrostatic asymmetry comparable to that of alpha-helical bee toxin melittin (positive charge near negative axial dipole terminus) is shown by fluorescence-depth quenching experiments to originate from the stabilization of transmembrane rod orientation by the membrane potential. The reduced activity of rigid push-pull rods having an electrostatic asymmetry comparable to that in alpha-helical natural antibiotics (a positive charge near the positive axial dipole terminus) is shown by structural studies to originate from rod "ejection" by membrane potentials comparable to that found in mammalian plasma membranes. This structural evidence for cell membrane recognition by asymmetric rods is unprecedented and of possible practical importance with regard to antibiotic resistance.

  5. Protection of mice against Trypanosoma cruzi by immunization with paraflagellar rod proteins requires T cell, but not B cell, function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, M J; Wrightsman, R A; Stryker, G A; Manning, J E

    1997-06-01

    Previous studies have shown that immunization of mice with the paraflagellar rod proteins (PAR) of Trypanosoma cruzi induces an immune response capable of protecting mice against an otherwise lethal challenge with this parasite. Herein, we define immunologic responses that do or do not play a critical role in PAR-mediated protection. Firstly, PAR-immunized Ab-deficient (muMT) strain mice survived an otherwise lethal T. cruzi challenge, indicating that a B cell response is not required for PAR-induced immunity. However, beta2m -/- mice, which are severely deficient in MHC class I and TCR alphabeta+ CD8+ CD4- T cells, did not survive challenge infection following PAR immunization, indicating that MHC class I/CD8+ T cell function is necessary for protection induced by PAR immunization. Surprisingly, PAR-immunized mice depleted of CD4+ T cells survived a T. cruzi challenge for >84 days postinfection while maintaining a parasitemia that is generally thought to be lethal (i.e., >10(6) trypomastigotes/ml), thus associating CD4+ T cell function with the process of parasite clearance. Consistent with this association, CD4+ T cells from PAR-immunized mice released INF-gamma and stimulated T. cruzi-infected macrophages to release nitric oxide. The importance of IFN-gamma in PAR-induced protective immunity is further indicated by the observation that PAR-immunized INF-gamma knockout mice developed an extremely high parasitemia and did not survive a challenge infection. Thus, while Ab-mediated immune mechanisms are not required for protection induced by PAR immunization, T cell responses are necessary for both elimination of bloodstream parasites and survival.

  6. Freeze-fracture studies of photoreceptor membranes: new observations bearing upon the distribution of cholesterol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, L D; Cohen, A I

    1983-09-01

    We performed electron microscopy of replicas from freeze-fractured retinas exposed during or after fixation to the cholesterol-binding antibiotic, filipin. We observed characteristic filipin-induced perturbations throughout the disk and plasma membranes of retinal rod outer segments of various species. It is evident that a prolonged exposure to filipin in fixative enhances rather than reduces presumptive cholesterol detection in the vertebrate photoreceptor cell. In agreement with the pattern seen in our previous study (Andrews, L.D., and A. I. Cohen, 1979, J. Cell Biol., 81:215-228), filipin-binding in membranes exhibiting particle-free patches seemed largely confined to these patches. Favorably fractured photoreceptors exhibited marked filipin-binding in apical inner segment plasma membrane topologically confluent with and proximate to the outer segment plasma membrane, which was comparatively free of filipin binding. A possible boundary between these differing membrane domains was suggested in a number of replicas exhibiting lower filipin binding to the apical plasma membrane of the inner segment in the area surrounding the cilium. This area contains a structure (Andrews, L. D., 1982, Freeze-fracture studies of vertebrate photoreceptors, In Structure of the Eye, J. G. Hollyfield and E. Acosta Vidrio, editors, Elsevier/North-Holland, New York, 11-23) that resembles the active zones of the nerve terminals for the frog neuromuscular junction. These observations lead us to hypothesize that these structures may function to direct vesicle fusion to occur near them, in a domain of membrane more closely resembling outer than inner segment plasma membrane. The above evidence supports the views that (a) all disk membranes contain cholesterol, but the particle-free patches present in some disks trap cholesterol from contiguous particulate membrane regions; (b) contiguous inner and outer segment membranes may greatly differ in cholesterol content; and (c) the suggested

  7. Effect of Purified Murine NGF on Isolated Photoreceptors of a Rodent Developing Retinitis Pigmentosa

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatini Rakshit

    Full Text Available 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.

  9. Technical Development of Gamma Scanning for Irradiated Fuel Rod after Upgrade of System in Hot-cell

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ryu, Woo Seog; Kim, Hee Moon; Baik, Seung Je; Yoo, Byung Ok; Choo, Yong Sun

    2007-06-15

    Non-destructive test system was installed at hot-cell(M1) in IMEF(Irradiated Materials Examination Facility) more than 10 years ago for the diametric measurement and gamma scanning of fuel rod. But this system must be needed to be remodeled for the effective operations. In 2006, the system was upgraded for 3 months. The collimator bench can be movable with horizontal direction(x-direction) by motorized system for sectional gamma scanning and 3-dimensional tomography of fuel rod. So, gamma scanning for fuel rod can be detectable by x, y and rotation directions. It may be possible to obtain the radioactivities with radial and axial directions of pellet. This system is good for the series experiments with several positions. Operation of fuel bench and gamma detection program were linked each other by new program tools. It can control detection and bench moving automatically when gamma inspection of fuel rod is carried out with axial or radial positions. Some of electronic parts were added in PLC panel, and operating panel was re-designed for the remote control. To operate the fuel bench by computer, AD converter and some I/O cards were installed in computer. All of software were developed in Windows-XP system instead of DOS system. Control programs were made by visual-C language. After upgrade of system, DUPIC fuel which was irradiated in HANARO research reactor was detected by gamma scanning. The results were good and operation of gamma scanning showed reduced inspection time and easy control of data on series of detection with axial positions. With consideration of ECT(Eddy Current Test) installation, the computer program and hardware were set up as well. But ECT is not installed yet, so we have to check abnormal situation of program and hardware system. It is planned to install ECT in 2007.

  10. Comparative investigation of stimulus-evoked rod outer segment movement and retinal electrophysiological activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yiming; Wang, Benquan; Yao, Xincheng

    2017-02-01

    Transient retinal phototropism (TRP) has been observed in rod photoreceptors activated by oblique visible light flashes. Time-lapse confocal microscopy and optical coherence tomography (OCT) revealed rod outer segment (ROS) movements as the physical source of TRP. However, the physiological source of TRP is still not well understood. In this study, concurrent TRP and electroretinogram (ERG) measurements disclosed a remarkably earlier onset time of the ROS movements (low sodium treatment reversibly blocked the photoreceptor ERG a-wave, which is known to reflect hyperpolarization of retinal photoreceptors, but preserved the TRP associated rod OS movements well. Our experimental results and theoretical analysis suggested that the physiological source of TRP might be attributed to early stages of phototransduction, before the hyperpolarization of retinal photoreceptors.

  11. Localization of Core Planar Cell Polarity Proteins, PRICKLEs, in Ameloblasts of Rat Incisors: Possible Regulation of Enamel Rod Decussation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishikawa, Sumio; Kawamoto, Tadafumi

    2015-04-28

    To confirm the possible involvement of planar cell polarity proteins in odontogenesis, one group of core proteins, PRICKLE1, PRICKLE2, PRICKLE3, and PRICKLE4, was examined in enamel epithelial cells and ameloblasts by immunofluorescence microscopy. PRICKLE1 and PRICKLE2 showed similar localization in the proliferation and secretory zones of the incisor. Immunoreactive dots and short rods in ameloblasts and stratum intermedium cells were evident in the proliferation to differentiation zone, but in the secretion zone, cytoplasmic dots decreased and the distal terminal web was positive for PRICKLE1 and PRICKLE2. PRICKLE3 and PRICKLE4 showed cytoplasmic labeling in ameloblasts and other enamel epithelial cells. Double labeling of PRICKLE2 with VANGL1, which is another planar cell polarity protein, showed partial co-localization. To examine the transport route of PRICKLE proteins, PRICKLE1 localization was examined after injection of a microtubule-disrupting reagent, colchicine, and was compared with CX43, which is a membrane protein transported as vesicles via microtubules. The results confirmed the retention of immunoreactive dots for PRICKLE1 in the cytoplasm of secretory ameloblasts of colchicine-injected animals, but fewer dots were observed in control animals. These results suggest that PRICKLE1 and PRICKLE2 are transported as vesicles to the junctional area, and are involved in pattern formation of distal junctional complexes and terminal webs of ameloblasts, further implying a role in the formed enamel rod arrangement.

  12. Induction of cytoplasmic rods and rings structures by inhibition of the CTP and GTP synthetic pathway in mammalian cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wendy C Carcamo

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cytoplasmic filamentous rods and rings (RR structures were identified using human autoantibodies as probes. In the present study, the formation of these conserved structures in mammalian cells and functions linked to these structures were examined. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Distinct cytoplasmic rods (∼3-10 µm in length and rings (∼2-5 µm in diameter in HEp-2 cells were initially observed in immunofluorescence using human autoantibodies. Co-localization studies revealed that, although RR had filament-like features, they were not enriched in actin, tubulin, or vimentin, and not associated with centrosomes or other known cytoplasmic structures. Further independent studies revealed that two key enzymes in the nucleotide synthetic pathway cytidine triphosphate synthase 1 (CTPS1 and inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase 2 (IMPDH2 were highly enriched in RR. CTPS1 enzyme inhibitors 6-diazo-5-oxo-L-norleucine and Acivicin as well as the IMPDH2 inhibitor Ribavirin exhibited dose-dependent induction of RR in >95% of cells in all cancer cell lines tested as well as mouse primary cells. RR formation by lower concentration of Ribavirin was enhanced in IMPDH2-knockdown HeLa cells whereas it was inhibited in GFP-IMPDH2 overexpressed HeLa cells. Interestingly, RR were detected readily in untreated mouse embryonic stem cells (>95%; upon retinoic acid differentiation, RR disassembled in these cells but reformed when treated with Acivicin. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: RR formation represented response to disturbances in the CTP or GTP synthetic pathways in cancer cell lines and mouse primary cells and RR are the convergence physical structures in these pathways. The availability of specific markers for these conserved structures and the ability to induce formation in vitro will allow further investigations in structure and function of RR in many biological systems in health and diseases.

  13. Morphoelastic rods

    CERN Document Server

    Tiero, Alessandro

    2014-01-01

    We propose a mechanical theory describing elastic rods which, like plant organs, can grow and can change their intrinsic curvature and torsion. The equations ruling accretion and remodeling are obtained by combining balance laws involving non-standard forces with constitutive prescriptions filtered by a dissipation principle that takes into account both standard and non-standard working.

  14. Protective Effects of Human iPS-Derived Retinal Pigmented Epithelial Cells in Comparison with Human Mesenchymal Stromal Cells and Human Neural Stem Cells on the Degenerating Retina in rd1 mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Jianan; Mandai, Michiko; Kamao, Hiroyuki; Hashiguchi, Tomoyo; Shikamura, Masayuki; Kawamata, Shin; Sugita, Sunao; Takahashi, Masayo

    2015-05-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a group of visual impairments characterized by progressive rod photoreceptor cell loss due to a genetic background. Pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) predominantly secreted by the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) has been reported to protect photoreceptors in retinal degeneration models, including rd1. In addition, clinical trials are currently underway outside Japan using human mesenchymal stromal cells and human neural stem cells to protect photoreceptors in RP and dry age-related macular degeneration, respectively. Thus, this study aimed to investigate the rescue effects of induced pluripotent stem (iPS)-RPE cells in comparison with those types of cells used in clinical trials on photoreceptor degeneration in rd1 mice. Cells were injected into the subretinal space of immune-suppressed 2-week-old rd1 mice. The results demonstrated that human iPS-RPE cells significantly attenuated photoreceptor degeneration on postoperative days (PODs) 14 and 21 and survived longer up to at least 12 weeks after operation than the other two types of graft cells with less immune responses and apoptosis. The mean PEDF concentration in the intraocular fluid in RPE-transplanted eyes was more than 1 µg/ml at PODs 14 and 21, and this may have contributed to the protective effect of RPE transplantation. Our findings suggest that iPS-RPE cells serve as a competent source to delay photoreceptor degeneration through stable survival in degenerating ocular environment and by releasing neuroprotective factors such as PEDF.

  15. Further assessment of neuropathology in retinal explants and neuroprotection by human neural progenitor cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohlin, Camilla; Liljekvist-Soltic, Ingela; Johansson, Kjell

    2011-10-01

    Explanted rat retinas show progressive photoreceptor degeneration that appears to be caspase-12-dependent. Decrease in photoreceptor density eventually affects the inner retina, particularly in the bipolar cell population. Explantation and the induced photoreceptor degeneration are accompanied by activation of Müller and microglia cells. The goal of this study was to determine whether the presence of a feeder layer of human neural progenitor cells (hNPCs) could suppress the degenerative and reactive changes in the explants. Immunohistochemical analyses showed considerable sprouting of rod photoreceptor axon terminals into the inner retina and reduced densities of cone and rod bipolar cells. Both sprouting and bipolar cell degenerations were significantly lower in retinas cultured with feeder layer cells compared to cultured controls. A tendency toward reduced microglia activation in the retinal layers was also noted in the presence of feeder layer cells. These results indicate that hNPCs or factors produced by them can limit the loss of photoreceptors and secondary injuries in the inner retina. The latter may be a consequence of disrupted synaptic arrangement.

  16. CONTROL ROD

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1958-11-18

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

  17. Photoreceptor processing speed and input resistance changes during light adaptation correlate with spectral class in the bumblebee, Bombus impatiens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Skorupski

    Full Text Available 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

  18. Progenitor cells from the porcine neural retina express photoreceptor markers after transplantation to the subretinal space of allorecipients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klassen, Henry; Kiilgaard, Jens Folke; Zahir, Tasneem

    2007-01-01

    and rhodopsin. In addition, reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction showed expression of the transcription factors Dach1, Hes1, Lhx2, Pax6, Six3, and Six6. Progenitor cells prelabeled with vital dyes survived as allografts in the subretinal space for up to 5 weeks (11 of 12 recipients) without exogenous......Work in rodents has shown that cultured retinal progenitor cells (RPCs) integrate into the degenerating retina, thus suggesting a potential strategy for treatment of similar degenerative conditions in humans. To demonstrate the relevance of the rodent work to large animals, we derived progenitor...... cells from the neural retina of the domestic pig and transplanted them to the laser-injured retina of allorecipients. Prior to grafting, immunocytochemical analysis showed that cultured porcine RPCs widely expressed neural cell adhesion molecule, as well as markers consistent with immature neural cells...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  20. Modeling retinal degeneration using patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zi-Bing Jin

    Full Text Available Retinitis pigmentosa (RP is the most common inherited human eye disease resulting in night blindness and visual defects. It is well known that the disease is caused by rod photoreceptor degeneration; however, it remains incurable, due to the unavailability of disease-specific human photoreceptor cells for use in mechanistic studies and drug screening. We obtained fibroblast cells from five RP patients with distinct mutations in the RP1, RP9, PRPH2 or RHO gene, and generated patient-specific induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells by ectopic expression of four key reprogramming factors. We differentiated the iPS cells into rod photoreceptor cells, which had been lost in the patients, and found that they exhibited suitable immunocytochemical features and electrophysiological properties. Interestingly, the number of the patient-derived rod cells with distinct mutations decreased in vitro; cells derived from patients with a specific mutation expressed markers for oxidation or endoplasmic reticulum stress, and exhibited different responses to vitamin E than had been observed in clinical trials. Overall, patient-derived rod cells recapitulated the disease phenotype and expressed markers of cellular stresses. Our results demonstrate that the use of patient-derived iPS cells will help to elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms caused by genetic mutations in RP.

  1. Angular sensitivity of blowfly photoreceptors : broadening by artificial electrical coupling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smakman, J.G.J.; Stavenga, D.G.

    1987-01-01

    1. Electrical coupling between R1-6 photoreceptors was investigated by measuring angular sensitivities and quantum bumps. 2. Recordings were made from two extreme types of cells: Type a: cells with a diffraction-like angular sensitivity profile. Only large bumps could be obtained from these cells. T

  2. Cut-off analysis of 19-cell Yb-doped double-cladding rod-type photonic crystal fibers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poli, F; Coscelli, E; Alkeskjold, T T; Passaro, D; Cucinotta, A; Leick, L; Broeng, J; Selleri, S

    2011-05-09

    Yb-doped double-cladding large mode area rod-type photonic crystal fibers are a key component for power scaling in fiber laser systems. Recently, designs with 19-cell core defect, that is with 19 missing air-holes in the center of the photonic crystal cladding, have been proposed, with reported core diameter up to 100 μm. In this paper an analysis of the cut-off wavelength of the first high-order mode in such low-NA fibers is reported, accounting for different approaches for the definition of the cladding effective index. Results have shown that taking into account the finite fiber cross-section and considering the first cladding mode of the actual fiber is mandatory to obtain a correct estimate of the cut-off wavelength.

  3. Paraflagellar rod protein-specific CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes target Trypanosoma cruzi-infected host cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wrightsman, Ruth A; Luhrs, Keith A; Fouts, David; Manning, Jerry E

    2002-08-01

    Our previous studies show that in mice immunized with the paraflagellar rod (PFR) proteins of Trypanosoma cruzi protective immunity against this protozoan parasite requires MHC class I-restricted T cell function. To determine whether PFR-specific CD8+ T cell subsets are generated during T. cruzi infection, potential CTL targets in the PFR proteins were identified by scanning the amino acid sequences of the four PFR proteins for regions of 8-10 amino acids that conform to predicted MHC class I H-2b binding motifs. A subset of the peptide sequences identified were synthesized and tested as target antigen in 51Cr-release assays with effector cells from chronically infected T. cruzi mice. Short-term cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) lines specific for two of the peptides, PFR-1(164-171) and PFR-3(123-130), showed high levels of lytic activity against peptide-pulsed target cells, secreted interferon (IFN)-gamma in response to parasite-infected target cells, and were found to be CD8+, CD4-, CD3+, TCRalphabeta+ cells of the Tc1 subset. Challenge of PFR immunized CD8-/- and perforin-deficient (PKO) mice confirmed that while CD8+ cells are required for survival of T. cruzi challenge infection, perforin activity is not required. Furthermore, while lytic activity of PFR-specific CD8+ T cell lines derived from PKO mice was severely impaired, the IFN-gamma levels secreted by CTLs from PKO mice were equivalent to that of normal mice, suggesting that the critical role played by CD8+ T cells in immunity to the parasite may be secretion of type 1 cytokines rather than lysis of parasite infected host cells.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  5. Centrosomal-ciliary gene CEP290/NPHP6 mutations result in blindness with unexpected sparing of photoreceptors and visual brain: implications for therapy of Leber congenital amaurosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cideciyan, Artur V; Aleman, Tomas S; Jacobson, Samuel G; Khanna, Hemant; Sumaroka, Alexander; Aguirre, Geoffrey K; Schwartz, Sharon B; Windsor, Elizabeth A M; He, Shirley; Chang, Bo; Stone, Edwin M; Swaroop, Anand

    2007-11-01

    Mutations in the centrosomal-ciliary gene CEP290/NPHP6 are associated with Joubert syndrome and are the most common cause of the childhood recessive blindness known as Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA). An in-frame deletion in Cep290 shows rapid degeneration in the rod-rich mouse retina. To explore the mechanisms of the human retinal disease, we studied CEP290-LCA in patients of different ages (7-48 years) and compared results to Cep290-mutant mice. Unexpectedly, blind CEP290-mutant human retinas retained photoreceptor and inner laminar architecture in the cone-rich central retina, independent of severity of visual loss. Surrounding the cone-rich island was photoreceptor loss and distorted retina, suggesting neural-glial remodeling. The mutant mouse retina at 4-6 weeks of age showed similar features of retinal remodeling, with altered neural and synaptic laminae and Muller glial activation. The visual brain pathways in CEP290-LCA were anatomically intact. Our findings of preserved foveal cones and visual brain anatomy in LCA with CEP290 mutations, despite severe blindness and rapid rod cell death, suggest an opportunity for visual restoration of central vision in this common form of inherited blindness.

  6. Amyloid precursor protein is required for normal function of the rod and cone pathways in the mouse retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tracy Ho

    Full Text Available Amyloid precursor protein (APP is a transmembrane glycoprotein frequently studied for its role in Alzheimer's disease. Our recent study in APP knockout (KO mice identified an important role for APP in modulating normal neuronal development in the retina. However the role APP plays in the adult retina and whether it is required for vision is unknown. In this study we evaluated the role of APP in retinal function and morphology comparing adult wildtype (WT and APP-KO mice. APP was expressed on neuronal cells of the inner retina, including horizontal, cone bipolar, amacrine and ganglion cells in WT mice. The function of the retina was assessed using the electroretinogram and although the rod photoreceptor responses were similar in APP-KO and WT mice, the post-photoreceptor, inner retinal responses of both the rod and cone pathways were reduced in APP-KO mice. These changes in inner retinal function did not translate to a substantial change in visual acuity as assessed using the optokinetic response or to changes in the gross cellular structure of the retina. These findings indicate that APP is not required for basic visual function, but that it is involved in modulating inner retinal circuitry.

  7. Nr2e3 and Nrl can reprogram retinal precursors to the rod fate in Xenopus retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McIlvain, Vera A; Knox, Barry E

    2007-07-01

    Transformation of undifferentiated progenitors into specific cell types is largely dependent on temporal and spatial expression of a complex network of transcription factors. Here, we examined whether neural retina leucine zipper (Nrl) and photoreceptor-specific nuclear receptor Nr2e3 transcription factors contribute to cell fate determination. We cloned the Xenopus Nr2e3 gene and showed that its temporal and spatial expression is similar to its mammalian ortholog. We tested its in vivo function by misexpressing these transcription factors in Xenopus eye primordia, demonstrating that either human Nr2e3 or Nrl directed photoreceptor precursors to become rods at the expense of cones. Furthermore, overexpression of Xenopus Nrl dramatically increased the number of lens fibers, whereas human Nrl did not, suggesting evolutionary divergence of function of the Nrl gene family. Misexpression of Nrl and Nr2e3 together were more effective than either transcription factor alone in directing precursors to the rod fate. Copyright 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  8. Calcium channel-dependent molecular maturation of photoreceptor synapses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nawal Zabouri

    Full Text Available Several studies have shown the importance of calcium channels in the development and/or maturation of synapses. The Ca(V1.4(α(1F knockout mouse is a unique model to study the role of calcium channels in photoreceptor synapse formation. It features abnormal ribbon synapses and aberrant cone morphology. We investigated the expression and targeting of several key elements of ribbon synapses and analyzed the cone morphology in the Ca(V1.4(α(1F knockout retina. Our data demonstrate that most abnormalities occur after eye opening. Indeed, scaffolding proteins such as Bassoon and RIM2 are properly targeted at first, but their expression and localization are not maintained in adulthood. This indicates that either calcium or the Ca(V1.4 channel, or both are necessary for the maintenance of their normal expression and distribution in photoreceptors. Other proteins, such as Veli3 and PSD-95, also display abnormal expression in rods prior to eye opening. Conversely, vesicle related proteins appear normal. Our data demonstrate that the Ca(V1.4 channel is important for maintaining scaffolding proteins in the ribbon synapse but less vital for proteins related to vesicular release. This study also confirms that in adult retinae, cones show developmental features such as sprouting and synaptogenesis. Overall we present evidence that in the absence of the Ca(V1.4 channel, photoreceptor synapses remain immature and are unable to stabilize.

  9. Bat eyes have ultraviolet-sensitive cone photoreceptors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brigitte Müller

    Full Text Available Mammalian retinae have rod photoreceptors for night vision and cone photoreceptors for daylight and colour vision. For colour discrimination, most mammals possess two cone populations with two visual pigments (opsins that have absorption maxima at short wavelengths (blue or ultraviolet light and long wavelengths (green or red light. Microchiropteran bats, which use echolocation to navigate and forage in complete darkness, have long been considered to have pure rod retinae. Here we use opsin immunohistochemistry to show that two phyllostomid microbats, Glossophaga soricina and Carollia perspicillata, possess a significant population of cones and express two cone opsins, a shortwave-sensitive (S opsin and a longwave-sensitive (L opsin. A substantial population of cones expresses S opsin exclusively, whereas the other cones mostly coexpress L and S opsin. S opsin gene analysis suggests ultraviolet (UV, wavelengths <400 nm sensitivity, and corneal electroretinogram recordings reveal an elevated sensitivity to UV light which is mediated by an S cone visual pigment. Therefore bats have retained the ancestral UV tuning of the S cone pigment. We conclude that bats have the prerequisite for daylight vision, dichromatic colour vision, and UV vision. For bats, the UV-sensitive cones may be advantageous for visual orientation at twilight, predator avoidance, and detection of UV-reflecting flowers for those that feed on nectar.

  10. Cellular elements for seeing in the dark: voltage-dependent conductances in cockroach photoreceptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salmela Iikka

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The importance of voltage-dependent conductances in sensory information processing is well-established in insect photoreceptors. Here we present the characterization of electrical properties in photoreceptors of the cockroach (Periplaneta americana, a nocturnal insect with a visual system adapted for dim light. Results Whole-cell patch-clamped photoreceptors had high capacitances and input resistances, indicating large photosensitive rhabdomeres suitable for efficient photon capture and amplification of small photocurrents at low light levels. Two voltage-dependent potassium conductances were found in the photoreceptors: a delayed rectifier type (KDR and a fast transient inactivating type (KA. Activation of KDR occurred during physiological voltage responses induced by light stimulation, whereas KA was nearly fully inactivated already at the dark resting potential. In addition, hyperpolarization of photoreceptors activated a small-amplitude inward-rectifying (IR current mediated at least partially by chloride. Computer simulations showed that KDR shapes light responses by opposing the light-induced depolarization and speeding up the membrane time constant, whereas KA and IR have a negligible role in the majority of cells. However, larger KA conductances were found in smaller and rapidly adapting photoreceptors, where KA could have a functional role. Conclusions The relative expression of KA and KDR in cockroach photoreceptors was opposite to the previously hypothesized framework for dark-active insects, necessitating further comparative work on the conductances. In general, the varying deployment of stereotypical K+ conductances in insect photoreceptors highlights their functional flexibility in neural coding.

  11. On Dispersion in Visual Photoreceptors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stavenga, D.G.; Barneveld, H.H. van

    1975-01-01

    An idealized visual pigment absorbance spectrum is used together with a Kramers-Kronig dispersion relation to calculate the contribution of the visual pigment to the refractive index of the fly photoreceptor. It appears that an absorption coefficient of 0.010 µm-1 results in a refractive index varia

  12. Photoreceptors: unconventional ways of seeing

    OpenAIRE

    Diaz, Naryttza N.; Sprecher, Simon G.

    2011-01-01

    Animals perceive light typically by photoreceptor neurons assembled in eyes, but some also use non-eye photosensory neurons. Multidendritic neurons in the body wall of Drosophila larvae have now been shown to use an unconventional phototransduction mechanism to sense light.

  13. Photoreceptor proteins from purple bacteria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hendriks, J.; van der Horst, M.A.; Chua, T.K.; Ávila Pérez, M.; van Wilderen, L.J.; Alexandre, M.T.A.; Groot, M.-L.; Kennis, J.T.M.; Hellingwerf, K.J.; Hunter, C.N.; Daldal, F.; Thurnauer, M.C.; Beatty, J.T.

    2009-01-01

    Purple bacteria contain representatives of four of the six main families of photoreceptor proteins: phytochromes, BLUF domain containing proteins, xanthopsins (i.e., photoactive yellow proteins), and phototropins (containing one or more light, oxygen, or voltage (LOV) domains). Most of them have a

  14. Role of kinesin heavy chain in Crumbs localization along the rhabdomere elongation in Drosophila photoreceptor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garrett P League

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Crumbs (Crb, a cell polarity gene, has been shown to provide a positional cue for the extension of the apical membrane domain, adherens junction (AJ, and rhabdomere along the growing proximal-distal axis during Drosophila photoreceptor morphogenesis. In developing Drosophila photoreceptors, a stabilized microtubule structure was discovered and its presence was linked to polarity protein localization. It was therefore hypothesized that the microtubules may provide trafficking routes for the polarity proteins during photoreceptor morphogenesis. This study has examined whether Kinesin heavy chain (Khc, a subunit of the microtubule-based motor Kinesin-1, is essential in polarity protein localization in developing photoreceptors. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Because a genetic interaction was found between crb and khc, Crb localization was examined in the developing photoreceptors of khc mutants. khc was dispensable during early eye differentiation and development. However, khc mutant photoreceptors showed a range of abnormalities in the apical membrane domain depending on the position along the proximal-distal axis in pupal photoreceptors. The khc mutant showed a progressive mislocalization in the apical domain along the distal-proximal axis during rhabdomere elongation. The khc mutation also led to a similar progressive defect in the stabilized microtubule structures, strongly suggesting that Khc is essential for microtubule structure and Crb localization during distal to proximal rhabdomere elongation in pupal morphogenesis. This role of Khc in apical domain control was further supported by khc's gain-of-function phenotype. Khc overexpression in photoreceptors caused disruption of the apical membrane domain and the stabilized microtubules in the developing photoreceptors. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: In summary, we examined the role of khc in the regulation of the apical Crb domain in developing photoreceptors. Since the rhabdomeres in

  15. Defects in RGS9 or its anchor protein R9AP in patients with slow photoreceptor deactivation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nishiguchi, KM; Sandberg, MA; Kooijman, AC; Martemyanov, KA; Pott, JWR; Hagstrom, SA; Arshavsky, VY; Berson, EL; Dryja, TP

    2004-01-01

    The RGS proteins are GTPase activating proteins that accelerate the deactivation of G proteins in a variety of signalling pathways in eukaryotes(1-6). RGS9 deactivates the G proteins (transducins) in the rod and cone phototransduction cascades(7,8). It is anchored to photoreceptor membranes by the t

  16. C-opsin expressing photoreceptors in echinoderms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ullrich-Lüter, Esther M; D'Aniello, Salvatore; Arnone, Maria I

    2013-07-01

    Today's progress in molecular analysis and, in particular, the increased availability of genome sequences have enabled us to investigate photoreceptor cells (PRCs) in organisms that were formerly inaccessible to experimental manipulation. Our studies of marine non-chordate deuterostomes thus aim to bridge a gap of knowledge regarding the evolution of deuterostome PRCs prior to the emergence of vertebrates' eyes. In this contribution, we will show evidence for expression of a c-opsin photopigment, which, according to our phylogenetic analysis, is closely related to an assemblage of chordate visual c-opsins. An antibody raised against sea urchins' c-opsin protein (Sp-Opsin1) recognizes epitopes in a variety of tissues of different echinoderms. While in sea urchins this c-opsin is expressed in locomotory and buccal tube feet, spines, pedicellaria, and epidermis, in brittlestars and starfish we found the immuno-reaction to be located exclusively in cells within the animals' spines. Structural characteristics of these c-opsin+ PRC types include the close vicinity/connection to nerve strands and a, so far unexplored, conspicuous association with the animals' calcite skeleton, which previously has been hypothesized to play a role in echinoderm photobiology. These features are discussed within the context of the evolution of photoreceptors in echinoderms and in deuterostomes generally.

  17. Chloroplasts continuously monitor photoreceptor signals during accumulation movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  18. Sumoylation of bZIP transcription factor NRL modulates target gene expression during photoreceptor differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger, Jerome E; Nellissery, Jacob; Kim, Douglas S; Swaroop, Anand

    2010-08-13

    Development of rod photoreceptors in the mammalian retina is critically dependent on the basic motif-leucine zipper transcription factor NRL (neural retina leucine zipper). In the absence of NRL, photoreceptor precursors in mouse retina produce only cones that primarily express S-opsin. Conversely, ectopic expression of NRL in post-mitotic precursors leads to a rod-only retina. To explore the role of signaling molecules in modulating NRL function, we identified putative sites of post-translational modification in the NRL protein by in silico analysis. Here, we demonstrate the sumoylation of NRL in vivo and in vitro, with two small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) molecules attached to the Lys-20 residue. NRL-K20R and NRL-K20R/K24R sumoylation mutants show reduced transcriptional activation of Nr2e3 and rhodopsin promoters (two direct targets of NRL) in reporter assays when compared with wild-type NRL. Consistent with this, in vivo electroporation of the NRL-K20R/K24R mutant into newborn Nrl(-/-) mouse retina leads to reduced Nr2e3 activation and only a partial rescue of the Nrl(-/-) phenotype in contrast to the wild-type NRL that is able to convert cones to rod photoreceptors. Although PIAS3 (protein inhibitor of activated STAT3), an E3-SUMO ligase implicated in photoreceptor differentiation, can be immunoprecipitated with NRL, there appears to be redundancy in E3 ligases, and PIAS3 does not seem to be essential for NRL sumoylation. Our studies suggest an important role of sumoylation in fine-tuning the activity of NRL and thereby incorporating yet another layer of control in gene regulatory networks involved in photoreceptor development and homeostasis.

  19. Sumoylation of bZIP Transcription Factor NRL Modulates Target Gene Expression during Photoreceptor Differentiation*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger, Jerome E.; Nellissery, Jacob; Kim, Douglas S.; Swaroop, Anand

    2010-01-01

    Development of rod photoreceptors in the mammalian retina is critically dependent on the basic motif-leucine zipper transcription factor NRL (neural retina leucine zipper). In the absence of NRL, photoreceptor precursors in mouse retina produce only cones that primarily express S-opsin. Conversely, ectopic expression of NRL in post-mitotic precursors leads to a rod-only retina. To explore the role of signaling molecules in modulating NRL function, we identified putative sites of post-translational modification in the NRL protein by in silico analysis. Here, we demonstrate the sumoylation of NRL in vivo and in vitro, with two small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) molecules attached to the Lys-20 residue. NRL-K20R and NRL-K20R/K24R sumoylation mutants show reduced transcriptional activation of Nr2e3 and rhodopsin promoters (two direct targets of NRL) in reporter assays when compared with wild-type NRL. Consistent with this, in vivo electroporation of the NRL-K20R/K24R mutant into newborn Nrl−/− mouse retina leads to reduced Nr2e3 activation and only a partial rescue of the Nrl−/− phenotype in contrast to the wild-type NRL that is able to convert cones to rod photoreceptors. Although PIAS3 (protein inhibitor of activated STAT3), an E3-SUMO ligase implicated in photoreceptor differentiation, can be immunoprecipitated with NRL, there appears to be redundancy in E3 ligases, and PIAS3 does not seem to be essential for NRL sumoylation. Our studies suggest an important role of sumoylation in fine-tuning the activity of NRL and thereby incorporating yet another layer of control in gene regulatory networks involved in photoreceptor development and homeostasis. PMID:20551322

  20. Developmental and daily expression of the Pax4 and Pax6 homeobox genes in the rat retina: localization of Pax4 in photoreceptor cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rath, Martin F; Bailey, Michael J; Kim, Jong-So;

    2009-01-01

    discovered that Pax4 is strongly expressed in retinal photoreceptors of the rat. Pax4 expression is not detectable in the foetal eye; however, postnatal Pax4 transcript levels rapidly increase. In contrast, Pax6 exhibits an inverse developmental pattern of expression being more strongly expressed......Pax4 is a homeobox gene encoding Pax4, a transcription factor that is essential for embryonic development of the endocrine pancreas. In the pancreas, Pax4 counters the effects of the related transcription factor, Pax6, which is known to be essential for eye morphogenesis. In this study, we have...

  1. Histamine Recycling Is Mediated by CarT, a Carcinine Transporter in Drosophila Photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Ying; An, Futing; Borycz, Jolanta A; Borycz, Janusz; Meinertzhagen, Ian A; Wang, Tao

    2015-12-01

    Histamine is an important chemical messenger that regulates multiple physiological processes in both vertebrate and invertebrate animals. Even so, how glial cells and neurons recycle histamine remains to be elucidated. Drosophila photoreceptor neurons use histamine as a neurotransmitter, and the released histamine is recycled through neighboring glia, where it is conjugated to β-alanine to form carcinine. However, how carcinine is then returned to the photoreceptor remains unclear. In an mRNA-seq screen for photoreceptor cell-enriched transporters, we identified CG9317, an SLC22 transporter family protein, and named it CarT (Carcinine Transporter). S2 cells that express CarT are able to take up carcinine in vitro. In the compound eye, CarT is exclusively localized to photoreceptor terminals. Null mutations of cart alter the content of histamine and its metabolites. Moreover, null cart mutants are defective in photoreceptor synaptic transmission and lack phototaxis. These findings reveal that CarT is required for histamine recycling at histaminergic photoreceptors and provide evidence for a CarT-dependent neurotransmitter trafficking pathway between glial cells and photoreceptor terminals.

  2. Photocurrents of cone photoreceptors of the golden-mantled ground squirrel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraft, T W

    1988-10-01

    1. Visual transduction in photoreceptors of the ground squirrel, Citellus lateralis, was studied by recording membrane current from individual cones in small pieces of retina. 2. Brief flashes of light produced transient reductions of the dark current; saturating response amplitudes were up to 67 pA. A flash strength of about 11,000 photons microns-2 at lambda max was required to give a half-saturating response. The stimulus-response relation was well fitted by an exponential saturation curve. Responses below 20% of maximum behaved linearly. 3. The response to a dim flash in most cells had a time to peak of 20-30 ms and resembled the impulse response of a series of five low-pass filters. 4. The variance of the dim-flash response amplitude put an upper limit of 80 fA on the size of the single photon response. Estimates based on the effective collecting area suggest the single photon response to be of the order of 10 fA. 5. Flash responses of squirrel cones usually lacked the undershoot observed in primate cones, although in about 1/3 of the cells a small undershoot developed during recording. 6. Background lights slightly shortened the time to peak of the flash response and reduced the integration time. 7. Spectral sensitivity measurements showed two classes of cones with peak sensitivities at about 520 and 435 nm. Rod sensitivity peaked near 500 nm. Spectral univariance was obeyed by all three classes of cells. 8. The shapes of the spectral sensitivity curves of the rod and both types of cones were similar to each other when plotted on a log wave number scale, but differed significantly from similar plots of monkey and human cone spectra. 9. The kinetics and sensitivity of flash responses of the blue- and green-sensitive cones were indistinguishable.

  3. Particle-In-Cell Simulations of the Electron Beam Source for X-Ray Radiography Generated by the Rod-Pinch Diode in the Cygnus Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Lin; Kwan, Thomas; Devolder, Barbara; Berninger, Mike; Bowers, Kevin; Smith, John

    2003-10-01

    The Cygnus experiment [Smith et al., AIP Conference Proceedings, 650, 135, 2002] is in operation at Los Alamos National Laboratory to support the Sub-Critical Experiments Program at the Nevada Test Site. In the Cygnus design, a rod-pinch diode is used to produce a low-energy (up to ˜ 2.25 MeV) radiographic electron source at the tip of a needle anode rod that extends through an annular cathode. As the electrons deposit their energies on the high-Z anode tip, bremsstrahlung photons are produced and are used to generate radiographs of an object. In this work we use the two-dimensional particle-in-cell code MERLIN to examine the diode physics and the dynamics of the rod-pinch electron source which is used in integrated X-ray radiographic chain model calculations [Kwan et al., Comp. Phys. Comm., 142, 263, 2001]. TEM waves are launched at one simulation boundary to set up the voltage required for the electron emission. Electron and ion trajectories are followed self-consistently in the electromagnetic fields as the electron beam impinges at the tip of the anode rod. The MERLIN simulation results of the electron endpoint energy and the diode voltage/current are consistent with the peak values obtained from Cygnus shots. The diode impedance response to the experimental parameters currently used in the Cygnus shots will be discussed.

  4. Three distinct roles for notch in Drosophila R7 photoreceptor specification.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Tomlinson

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs and Notch (N proteins are different types of transmembrane receptors that transduce extracellular signals and control cell fate. Here we examine cell fate specification in the Drosophila retina and ask how N acts together with the RTKs Sevenless (Sev and the EGF receptor (DER to specify the R7 photoreceptor. The retina is composed of many hundred ommatidia, each of which grows by recruiting surrounding, undifferentiated cells and directing them to particular fates. The R7 photoreceptor derives from a cohort of three cells that are incorporated together following specification of the R2-R5 and R8 photoreceptors. Two cells of the cohort are specified as the R1/6 photoreceptor type by DER activation. These cells then activate N in the third cell (the R7 precursor. By manipulation of N and RTK signaling in diverse combinations we establish three roles for N in specifying the R7 fate. The first role is to impose a block to photoreceptor differentiation; a block that DER activation cannot overcome. The second role, paradoxically, is to negate the first; Notch activation up-regulates Sev expression, enabling the presumptive R7 cell to receive an RTK signal from R8 that can override the block. The third role is to specify the cell as an R7 rather than an R1/6 once RTK signaling has specified the cells as a photoreceptor. We speculate why N acts both to block and to facilitate photoreceptor differentiation, and provide a model for how N and RTK signaling act combinatorially to specify the R1/6 and R7 photoreceptors as well as the surrounding non-neuronal cone cells.

  5. Calcium pump in the disk membranes isolated from bovine retinal rod outer segments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panfoli, I; Morelli, A; Pepe, I M

    1994-08-01

    The existence of a Ca2+ pump in rod outer segment disks of bovine retina is strongly suggested by the isolation on sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of a hydroxylamine-sensitive phosphorylated intermediate (E-P) of molecular mass of about 100 kDa as well as by measurements of active calcium transport and adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP) hydrolysis. Active Ca2+ uptake by disks was dependent on the presence of Mg(2+)-ATP, was inhibited by vanadate or lanthanum and appeared poorly sensitive to calmodulin. ATP hydrolysis by disk membranes was a function of free Ca2+ concentration in the absence of exogenous Mg2+. The presence of a Ca2+ pump on disk membranes is discussed in terms of its possible role in Ca2+ ion buffering during photoreceptor cell functioning.

  6. Phase diagrams and morphological evolution in wrapping of rod-shaped elastic nanoparticles by cell membrane: a two-dimensional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Xin; Gao, Huajian

    2014-06-01

    A fundamental understanding of cell-nanomaterial interaction is essential for biomedical diagnostics, therapeutics, and nanotoxicity. Here, we perform a theoretical analysis to investigate the phase diagram and morphological evolution of an elastic rod-shaped nanoparticle wrapped by a lipid membrane in two dimensions. We show that there exist five possible wrapping phases based on the stability of full wrapping, partial wrapping, and no wrapping states. The wrapping phases depend on the shape and size of the particle, adhesion energy, membrane tension, and bending rigidity ratio between the particle and membrane. While symmetric morphologies are observed in the early and late stages of wrapping, in between a soft rod-shaped nanoparticle undergoes a dramatic symmetry breaking morphological change while stiff and rigid nanoparticles experience a sharp reorientation. These results are of interest to the study of a range of phenomena including viral budding, exocytosis, as well as endocytosis or phagocytosis of elastic particles into cells.

  7. How rods respond to single photons: Key adaptations of a G-protein cascade that enable vision at the physical limit of perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reingruber, Jürgen; Holcman, David; Fain, Gordon L

    2015-11-01

    Rod photoreceptors are among the most sensitive light detectors in nature. They achieve their remarkable sensitivity across a wide variety of species through a number of essential adaptations: a specialized cellular geometry, a G-protein cascade with an unusually stable receptor molecule, a low-noise transduction mechanism, a nearly perfect effector enzyme, and highly evolved mechanisms of feedback control and receptor deactivation. Practically any change in protein expression, enzyme activity, or feedback control can be shown to impair photon detection, either by decreasing sensitivity or signal-to-noise ratio, or by reducing temporal resolution. Comparison of mammals to amphibians suggests that rod outer-segment morphology and the molecules and mechanism of transduction may have evolved together to optimize light sensitivity in darkness, which culminates in the extraordinary ability of these cells to respond to single photons at the ultimate limit of visual perception.

  8. Synthesis of docosahexaenoic acid from eicosapentaenoic acid in retina neurons protects photoreceptors from oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simón, María Victoria; Agnolazza, Daniela L; German, Olga Lorena; Garelli, Andrés; Politi, Luis E; Agbaga, Martin-Paul; Anderson, Robert E; Rotstein, Nora P

    2016-03-01

    Oxidative stress is involved in activating photoreceptor death in several retinal degenerations. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), the major polyunsaturated fatty acid in the retina, protects cultured retina photoreceptors from apoptosis induced by oxidative stress and promotes photoreceptor differentiation. Here, we investigated whether eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), a metabolic precursor to DHA, had similar effects and whether retinal neurons could metabolize EPA to DHA. Adding EPA to rat retina neuronal cultures increased opsin expression and protected photoreceptors from apoptosis induced by the oxidants paraquat and hydrogen peroxide (H2 O2 ). Palmitic, oleic, and arachidonic acids had no protective effect, showing the specificity for DHA. We found that EPA supplementation significantly increased DHA percentage in retinal neurons, but not EPA percentage. Photoreceptors and glial cells expressed Δ6 desaturase (FADS2), which introduces the last double bond in DHA biosynthetic pathway. Pre-treatment of neuronal cultures with CP-24879 hydrochloride, a Δ5/Δ6 desaturase inhibitor, prevented EPA-induced increase in DHA percentage and completely blocked EPA protection and its effect on photoreceptor differentiation. These results suggest that EPA promoted photoreceptor differentiation and rescued photoreceptors from oxidative stress-induced apoptosis through its elongation and desaturation to DHA. Our data show, for the first time, that isolated retinal neurons can synthesize DHA in culture. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), the major polyunsaturated fatty acid in retina photoreceptors, and its precursor, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) have multiple beneficial effects. Here, we show that retina neurons in vitro express the desaturase FADS2 and can synthesize DHA from EPA. Moreover, addition of EPA to these cultures protects photoreceptors from oxidative stress and promotes their differentiation through its metabolization to DHA.

  9. Damage of photoreceptor cells by N-methyl-N-nitrosourea in cats%N-甲基-N-亚硝脲对猫视网膜光感受器细胞损害的研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张钦; 董建强; 黎晓新

    2011-01-01

    背景 合理的视网膜色素变性(RP)动物模型的建立方法是进行RP干预和治疗的重要工具和手段.研究证实,N-甲基-N-亚硝脲(MNU)可造成哺乳动物光感受器细胞的选择性损害,但是否MNU可用于建立RP动物模型的报道较少.目的 评估MNU对猫视网膜光感受器细胞的毒性损害作用.方法 20只2岁龄的猫一次性股静脉注射MNU,并按照注射剂量的不同分为20、25、30、35、40mg/kg MNU组,每组4只.另外4只猫股静脉注射等量生理盐水作为对照组.MNU注射后每日观察实验猫的行为变化、瞳孔大小及对光反射情况,分别于注射后24h、72h、7d和14d用静脉注射过量的质量分数2%戊巴比妥钠处死实验猫,眼球摘除后制备视网膜切片进行组织病理学检查,评估不同剂量MNU对视网膜光感受器的影响.结果 不同剂量MNU组的实验猫注射MNU 7d后瞳孔散大,对光反射迟钝.MNU注射24h,猫视网膜光感受器细胞的损害以核固缩和排列紊乱为主,MNU注射72h,视网膜光感受器细胞的损害以外核层变薄和细胞碎裂为主,MNU注射7d后,40mg/kg注射组的实验猫均死亡,光感受器细胞层仅存在极少量细胞,MNU注射14d,视网膜光感受器细胞层均完全消失.各组视网膜损害程度与注射MNU剂量有关.结论 MNU可以造成猫视网膜光感受器细胞的严重损害,MNU对视网膜光感受器的作用呈时间和剂量依赖性.%Background To establish the ideal animal model of retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is very important for onward relevant study.Previous research determined that N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU) can selectively damage photoreceptors via intravenous injection in mammal.However,whether MNU can be used to create an RP model needs to be investigated.Objective This experiment was designed to evaluate the toxic effect of MNU on photoreceptor cells of cats.Methods MNU was injected into 20 2-year-old cats via femoral vein and randomized into 20mg/kg, 25mg

  10. Clinical Effects of Novel Nanoscaled Core Decompression Rods Combined with Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stem Cells on the Treatment of Early Osteonecrosis of the Femoral Head

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongyang Gao

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Osteonecrosis of the femoral head (ONFH is one of the most common diseases in orthopedics. In this study, we investigated the clinical effects of novel nanoscaled core decompression rods combined with mesenchymal stem cells on the treatment of the ONFH. 12 adult patients with early ONFH (at the stage of Ficat II received the treatment using the implantation of novel nanoscaled core decompression rods combined with umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells. The grade of the patients’ hip was scored by Harris marking system before and after the surgery, and then paired t-test was done. We assessed the curative efficiency based on the change of the patients before and after the surgery. In particular, the survival rate of femoral head was assessed at 12 months after the surgery. The results demonstrated that according to the standard of Harris Scoring, the average grade of hip joint before the surgery was 54.16 ± 4.23 points while average grade of hip joint at 12 months after the surgery was 85.28 ± 3.65 points. So, the implantation of the novel nanoscaled core decompression rods combined with mesenchymal stem cells had satisfactory clinical effects, suggesting that this implantation should be effective to treat early ONFH.

  11. Influence of dietary melatonin on photoreceptor survival in the rat retina: an ocular toxicity study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiechmann, Allan F; Chignell, Colin F; Roberts, Joan E

    2008-02-01

    Previous studies have shown that melatonin treatment increases the susceptibility of retinal photoreceptors to light-induced cell death. The purpose of this study was to evaluate under various conditions the potential toxicity of dietary melatonin on retinal photoreceptors. Male and female Fischer 344 (non-pigmented) and Long-Evans (pigmented) rats were treated with daily single doses of melatonin by gavage for a period of 14 days early in the light period or early in the dark period. In another group, rats were treated 3 times per week with melatonin early in the light period, and then exposed to high intensity illumination (1000-1500 lx; HII) for 2h, and then returned to the normal cyclic lighting regime. At the end of the treatment periods, morphometric measurements of outer nuclear layer thickness (ONL; the layer containing the photoreceptor cell nuclei) were made at specific loci throughout the retinas. In male and female non-pigmented Fischer rats, melatonin administration increased the degree of photoreceptor cell death when administered during the nighttime and during the day when followed by exposure to HII. There were some modest effects of melatonin on photoreceptor cell death when administered to Fischer rats during the day or night without exposure to HII. Melatonin treatment caused increases in the degree of photoreceptor cell death when administered in the night to male pigmented Long-Evans rats, but melatonin administration during the day, either with or without exposure to HII, had little if any effect on photoreceptor cell survival. In pigmented female Long-Evans rats, melatonin administration did not appear to have significant effects on photoreceptor cell death in any treatment group. The results of this study confirm and extend previous reports that melatonin increases the susceptibility of photoreceptors to light-induced cell death in non-pigmented rats. It further suggests that during the dark period, melatonin administration alone (i.e., no

  12. The cis-regulatory logic of the mammalian photoreceptor transcriptional network.

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    Timothy H-C Hsiau

    Full Text Available The photoreceptor cells of the retina are subject to a greater number of genetic diseases than any other cell type in the human body. The majority of more than 120 cloned human blindness genes are highly expressed in photoreceptors. In order to establish an integrative framework in which to understand these diseases, we have undertaken an experimental and computational analysis of the network controlled by the mammalian photoreceptor transcription factors, Crx, Nrl, and Nr2e3. Using microarray and in situ hybridization datasets we have produced a model of this network which contains over 600 genes, including numerous retinal disease loci as well as previously uncharacterized photoreceptor transcription factors. To elucidate the connectivity of this network, we devised a computational algorithm to identify the photoreceptor-specific cis-regulatory elements (CREs mediating the interactions between these transcription factors and their target genes. In vivo validation of our computational predictions resulted in the discovery of 19 novel photoreceptor-specific CREs near retinal disease genes. Examination of these CREs permitted the definition of a simple cis-regulatory grammar rule associated with high-level expression. To test the generality of this rule, we used an expanded form of it as a selection filter to evolve photoreceptor CREs from random DNA sequences in silico. When fused to fluorescent reporters, these evolved CREs drove strong, photoreceptor-specific expression in vivo. This study represents the first systematic identification and in vivo validation of CREs in a mammalian neuronal cell type and lays the groundwork for a systems biology of photoreceptor transcriptional regulation.

  13. Architectural engineering of rod-coil compatibilizers for producing mechanically and thermally stable polymer solar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hyeong Jun; Kim, Jae-Han; Ryu, Ji-Ho; Kim, Youngkwon; Kang, Hyunbum; Lee, Won Bo; Kim, Taek-Soo; Kim, Bumjoon J

    2014-10-28

    While most high-efficiency polymer solar cells (PSCs) are made of bulk heterojunction (BHJ) blends of conjugated polymers and fullerene derivatives, they have a significant morphological instability issue against mechanical and thermal stress. Herein, we developed an architecturally engineered compatibilizer, poly(3-hexylthiophene)-graft-poly(2-vinylpyridine) (P3HT-g-P2VP), that effectively modifies the sharp interface of a BHJ layer composed of a P3HT donor and various fullerene acceptors, resulting in a dramatic enhancement of mechanical and thermal stabilities. We directly measured the mechanical properties of active layer thin films without a supporting substrate by floating a thin film on water, and the enhancement of mechanical stability without loss of the electronic functions of PSCs was successfully demonstrated. Supramolecular interactions between the P2VP of the P3HT-g-P2VP polymers and the fullerenes generated their universal use as compatibilizers regardless of the type of fullerene acceptors, including mono- and bis-adduct fullerenes, while maintaining their high device efficiency. Most importantly, the P3HT-g-P2VP copolymer had better compatibilizing efficiency than linear type P3HT-b-P2VP with much enhanced mechanical and thermal stabilities. The graft architecture promotes preferential segregation at the interface, resulting in broader interfacial width and lower interfacial tension as supported by molecular dynamics simulations.

  14. Photoreceptor damage following exposure to excess riboflavin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckhert, C D; Hsu, M H; Pang, N

    1993-12-15

    Flavins generate oxidants during metabolism and when exposed to light. Here we report that the photoreceptor layer of retinas from black-eyed rats is reduced in size by a dietary regime containing excess riboflavin. The effect of excess riboflavin was dose-dependent and was manifested by a decrease in photoreceptor length. This decrease was due in part to a reduction in the thickness of the outer nuclear layer, a structure formed from stacked photoreceptor nuclei. These changes were accompanied by an increase in photoreceptor outer segment autofluorescence following illumination at 328 nm, a wavelength that corresponds to the excitation maxima of oxidized lipopigments of the retinal pigment epithelium.

  15. Next Generation Solar Cells Based on Graded Bandgap Device Structures Utilising Rod-Type Nano-Materials

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    Imyhamy M. Dharmadasa

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Current solar cells under research and development utilise mainly one absorber layer limiting the photon harvesting capabilities. In order to develop next generation solar cells, research should move towards effective photon harvesting methods utilising low-cost solar energy materials. This will lead to reduce the $W−1 figure for direct solar energy conversion to electrical energy. In this work, a graded bandgap solar cell has been designed to absorb all photons from the UV, visible and IR regions. In addition, impurity PV effect and impact ionisation have been incorporated to enhance charge carrier creation within the same device. This new design has been experimentally tested using the most researched MOCVD grown GaAs/AlGaAs system, in order to confirm its validity. Devices with high Voc ~ 1175 mV and the highest possible FF ~ (0.85–0.87 have been produced, increasing the conversion efficiency to ~20% within only two growth runs. These devices were also experimentally tested for the existence of impurity PV effect and impact ionisation. The devices are PV active in complete darkness producing over 800 mV, Voc indicating the harvesting of IR radiation from the surroundings through impurity PV effect. The quantum efficiency measurements show over 140% signal confirming the contribution to PV action from impact ionisation. Since the concept is successfully proven, the low-cost and scalable electrodeposited semiconducting layers are used to produce graded bandgap solar cell structures. The utilisation of nano- and micro-rod type materials in graded bandgap devices are also presented and discussed in this paper. Preliminary work on glass/FTO/n-ZnS/n-CdS/n-CdTe/Au graded bandgap devices show 10%–12% efficient devices indicating extremely high Jsc values ~48 mA·cm−2, showing the high potential of these devices in achieving higher efficiencies. The detailed results on these low-cost and novel graded bandgap devices are presented in a separate

  16. Cell-specific DNA methylation patterns of retina-specific genes.

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    Shannath L Merbs

    Full Text Available Many studies have demonstrated that epigenetic mechanisms are important in the regulation of gene expression during embryogenesis, gametogenesis, and other forms of tissue-specific gene regulation. We sought to explore the possible role of epigenetics, specifically DNA methylation, in the establishment and maintenance of cell type-restricted gene expression in the retina. To assess the relationship between DNA methylation status and expression level of retinal genes, bisulfite sequence analysis of the 1000 bp region around the transcription start sites (TSS of representative rod and cone photoreceptor-specific genes and gene expression analysis were performed in the WERI and Y79 human retinoblastoma cell lines. Next, the homologous genes in mouse were bisulfite sequenced in the retina and in non-expressing tissues. Finally, bisulfite sequencing was performed on isolated photoreceptor and non-photoreceptor retinal cells isolated by laser capture microdissection. Differential methylation of rhodopsin (RHO, retinal binding protein 3 (RBP3, IRBP cone opsin, short-wave-sensitive (OPN1SW, cone opsin, middle-wave-sensitive (OPN1MW, and cone opsin, long-wave-sensitive (OPN1LW was found in the retinoblastoma cell lines that inversely correlated with gene expression levels. Similarly, we found tissue-specific hypomethylation of the promoter region of Rho and Rbp3 in mouse retina as compared to non-expressing tissues, and also observed hypomethylation of retinal-expressed microRNAs. The Rho and Rbp3 promoter regions were unmethylated in expressing photoreceptor cells and methylated in non-expressing, non-photoreceptor cells from the inner nuclear layer. A third regional hypomethylation pattern of photoreceptor-specific genes was seen in a subpopulation of non-expressing photoreceptors (Rho in cones from the Nrl -/- mouse and Opn1sw in rods. These results demonstrate that a number of photoreceptor-specific genes have cell-specific differential DNA

  17. Dlic1 deficiency impairs ciliogenesis of photoreceptors by destabilizing dynein

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Shanshan Kong; Xinrong Du; Chao Peng; Yiming Wu; Huirong Li; Xi Jin; Ling Hou

    2013-01-01

    Cytoplasmic dynein 1 is fundamentally important for transporting a variety of essential cargoes along microtubules within eukaryotic cells.However,in mammals,few mutants are available for studying the effects of defects in dynein-controlled processes in the context of the whole organism.Here,we deleted mouse Dlic1 gene encoding DLIC1,a subunit of the dynein complex.Dlic1-/-mice are viable,but display severe photoreceptor degeneration.Ablation of Dlic1 results in ectopic accumulation of outer segment (OS) proteins,and impairs OS growth and ciliogenesis of photoreceptors by interfering with Rabll-vesicle trafficking and blocking efficient OS protein transport from Golgi to the basal body.Our studies show that Dlic1 deficiency partially blocks vesicle export from endoplasmic reticulum (ER),but seems not to affect vesicle transport from the ER to Golgi.Further mechanistic study reveals that lack of Dlic1 destabilizes dynein subunits and alters the normal subcellular distribution of dynein in photoreceptors,probably due to the impaired transport function of dynein.Our results demonstrate that Dlic1 plays important roles in ciliogenesis and protein transport to the OS,and is required for photoreceptor development and survival.The Dlic1-/-mice also provide a new mouse model to study human retinal degeneration.

  18. Plasmonic spectrum on 1D and 2D periodic arrays of rod-shape metal nanoparticle pairs with different core patterns for biosensor and solar cell applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumara, N. T. R. N.; Chou Chau, Yuan-Fong; Huang, Jin-Wei; Huang, Hung Ji; Lin, Chun-Ting; Chiang, Hai-Pang

    2016-11-01

    Simulations of surface plasmon resonance (SPR) on the near field intensity and absorption spectra of one-dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) periodic arrays of rod-shape metal nanoparticle (MNP) pairs using the finite element method (FEM) and taking into account the different core patterns for biosensor and solar cell applications are investigated. A tunable optical spectrum corresponding to the transverse SPR modes is observed. The peak resonance wavelength (λ res) can be shifted to red as the core patterns in rod-shape MNPs have been changed. We find that the 2D periodic array of core-shell MNP pairs (case 2) exhibit a red shifted SPR that can be tuned the gap enhancement and absorption efficiency simultaneously over an extended wavelength range. The tunable optical performances give us a qualitative idea of the geometrical properties of the periodic array of rod-shape MNP pairs on SPRs that can be as a promising candidate for plasmonic biosensor and solar cell applications.

  19. Action spectra of zebrafish cone photoreceptors.

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    Duco Endeman

    Full Text Available Zebrafish is becoming an increasingly popular model in the field of visual neuroscience. Although the absorption spectra of its cone photopigments have been described, the cone action spectra were still unknown. In this study we report the action spectra of the four types of zebrafish cone photoreceptors, determined by measuring voltage responses upon light stimulation using whole cell patch clamp recordings. A generic template of photopigment absorption spectra was fit to the resulting action spectra in order to establish the maximum absorption wavelength, the A2-based photopigment contribution and the size of the β-wave of each cone-type. Although in general there is close correspondence between zebrafish cone action- and absorbance spectra, our data suggest that in the case of MWS- and LWS-cones there is appreciable contribution of A2-based photopigments and that the β-wave for these cones is smaller than expected based on the absorption spectra.

  20. Tie rod insertion test

    CERN Multimedia

    B. LEVESY

    2002-01-01

    The superconducting coil is inserted in the outer vaccum tank and supported by a set of tie rods. These tie rods are made of titanium alloy. This test reproduce the final insertion of the tie rods inside the outer vacuum tank.

  1. Coexpression of three middle wavelength-absorbing visual pigments in sexually dimorphic photoreceptors of the butterfly Colias erate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ogawa, Yuri; Awata, Hiroko; Wakakuwa, Motohiro; Kinoshita, Michiyo; Stavenga, Doekele G.; Arikawa, Kentaro

    2012-01-01

    The tiered ommatidia of the Eastern Pale Clouded yellow butterfly, Colias erate, contain nine photoreceptor cells, four of which contribute their rhabdomeral microvilli to the distal tier of the rhabdom. We analyzed the visual pigments and spectral sensitivities of these distal photoreceptors in bot

  2. A new photosensory function for simple photoreceptors, the intrinsically photoresponsive neurons of the sea slug Onchidium

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    Tsukasa Gotow

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Simple photoreceptors, namely intrinsically light-sensitive neurons without microvilli and/or cilia, have long been known to exist in the central ganglia of crayfish, Aplysia, Onchidium, and Helix. These simple photoreceptors are not only first-order photosensory cells, but also second-order neurons (interneurons, relaying several kinds of sensory synaptic inputs. Another important issue is that the photoresponses of these simple photoreceptors show very slow kinetics and little adaptation. These characteristics suggest that the simple photoreceptors of the Onchidium have a function in non-image-forming vision, different from classical eye photoreceptors used for cording dynamic images of vision. The cited literature provides evidence that the depolarizing and hyperpolarizing photoresponses of simple photoreceptors play a role in the long-lasting potentiation of synaptic transmission of excitatory and inhibitory sensory inputs, and as well as in the potentiation and the suppression of the subsequent behavioral outputs. In short, we suggest that simple photoreceptors operate in the general potentiation of synaptic transmission and subsequent motor output; i.e., they perform a new photosensory function.

  3. Using electroretinograms and multi-model inference to identify spectral classes of photoreceptors and relative opsin expression levels

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    Nicolas Lessios

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Understanding how individual photoreceptor cells factor in the spectral sensitivity of a visual system is essential to explain how they contribute to the visual ecology of the animal in question. Existing methods that model the absorption of visual pigments use templates which correspond closely to data from thin cross-sections of photoreceptor cells. However, few modeling approaches use a single framework to incorporate physical parameters of real photoreceptors, which can be fused, and can form vertical tiers. Akaike’s information criterion (AICc was used here to select absorptance models of multiple classes of photoreceptor cells that maximize information, given visual system spectral sensitivity data obtained using extracellular electroretinograms and structural parameters obtained by histological methods. This framework was first used to select among alternative hypotheses of photoreceptor number. It identified spectral classes from a range of dark-adapted visual systems which have between one and four spectral photoreceptor classes. These were the velvet worm, Principapillatus hitoyensis, the branchiopod water flea, Daphnia magna, normal humans, and humans with enhanced S-cone syndrome, a condition in which S-cone frequency is increased due to mutations in a transcription factor that controls photoreceptor expression. Data from the Asian swallowtail, Papilio xuthus, which has at least five main spectral photoreceptor classes in its compound eyes, were included to illustrate potential effects of model over-simplification on multi-model inference. The multi-model framework was then used with parameters of spectral photoreceptor classes and the structural photoreceptor array kept constant. The goal was to map relative opsin expression to visual pigment concentration. It identified relative opsin expression differences for two populations of the bluefin killifish, Lucania goodei. The modeling approach presented here will be useful in

  4. Retbindin is an extracellular riboflavin-binding protein found at the photoreceptor/retinal pigment epithelium interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-02-20

    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.

  5. Identifying functional connections of the inner photoreceptors in Drosophila using Tango-Trace.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jagadish, Smitha; Barnea, Gilad; Clandinin, Thomas R; Axel, Richard

    2014-08-06

    In Drosophila, the four inner photoreceptor neurons exhibit overlapping but distinct spectral sensitivities and mediate behaviors that reflect spectral preference. We developed a genetic strategy, Tango-Trace, that has permitted the identification of the connections of the four chromatic photoreceptors. Each of the four stochastically distributed chromatic photoreceptor subtypes make distinct connections in the medulla with four different TmY cells. Moreover, each class of TmY cells forms a retinotopic map in both the medulla and the lobula complex, generating four overlapping topographic maps that could carry different color information. Thus, the four inner photoreceptors transmit spectral information through distinct channels that may converge in both the medulla and lobula complex. These projections could provide an anatomic basis for color vision and may relay information about color to motion sensitive areas. Moreover, the Tango-Trace strategy we used may be applied more generally to identify neural circuits in the fly brain.

  6. The role of the small GTPase Rap in Drosophila R7 photoreceptor specification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mavromatakis, Yannis Emmanuel; Tomlinson, Andrew

    2012-01-01

    The Drosophila R7 photoreceptor provides an excellent model system with which to study how cells receive and “decode” signals that specify cell fate. R7 is specified by the combined actions of the receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) and Notch (N) signaling pathways. These pathways interact in a complex manner that includes antagonistic effects on photoreceptor specification: RTK promotes the photoreceptor fate, whereas N inhibits. Although other photoreceptors are subject to only mild N activation, R7 experiences a high-level N signal. To counter this effect and to ensure that the cell is specified as a photoreceptor, a high RTK signal is transduced in the cell. Thus, there are two levels of RTK transduction in the photoreceptors: in R7 it is high, whereas in others it is low. Here, we address how this high-level RTK signal is transduced in R7 and find that, in addition to Ras, another small GTPase, Rap, is also engaged. Thus, when N activity is high, a robust RTK signal operates that uses both Ras and Rap, but when N activity is low, only a mild RTK signal is transduced and Ras alone suffices for the purpose. PMID:22355117

  7. Mn-doped CdS quantum dots sensitized hierarchical TiO{sub 2} flower-rod for solar cell application

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, Libo; Li, Zhen; Liu, Yingbo; Cheng, Fa; Sun, Shuqing, E-mail: sunshuqing@tju.edu.cn

    2014-06-01

    A double-layered TiO{sub 2} film which three dimensional (3D) flowers grown on highly ordered self-assembled one dimensional (1D) TiO{sub 2} nanorods was synthesized directly on transparent fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO) conducting glass substrate by a facile hydrothermal method and was applied as photoanode in Mn-doped CdS quantum dots sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs). The 3D TiO{sub 2} flowers with the increased surface areas can adsorb more QDs, which increased the absorption of light; meanwhile 1D TiO{sub 2} nanorods beneath the flowers offered a direct electrical pathway for photogenerated electrons, accelerating the electron transfer rate. A typical type II band alignment which can effectively separate photogenerated excitons and reduce recombination of electrons and holes was constructed by Mn-doped CdS QDs and TiO{sub 2} flower-rod. The incident photon-to-current conversion efficiency (IPCE) of the Mn-doped CdS/TiO{sub 2} flower-rod solar cell reached to 40% with the polysulfide electrolyte filled in the solar cell. The power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 1.09% was obtained with the Mn-doped CdS/TiO{sub 2} flower-rod solar cell under one sun illumination (AM 1.5G, 100 mW/cm{sup 2}), which is 105.7% higher than that of the CdS/TiO{sub 2} nanorod solar cell (0.53%).

  8. Mitochondria Maintain Distinct Ca(2+) Pools in Cone Photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giarmarco, Michelle M; Cleghorn, Whitney M; Sloat, Stephanie R; Hurley, James B; Brockerhoff, Susan E

    2017-02-22

    Ca(2+) ions have distinct roles in the outer segment, cell body, and synaptic terminal of photoreceptors. We tested the hypothesis that distinct Ca(2+) domains are maintained by Ca(2+) uptake into mitochondria. Serial block face scanning electron microscopy of zebrafish cones revealed that nearly 100 mitochondria cluster at the apical side of the inner segment, directly below the outer segment. The endoplasmic reticulum surrounds the basal and lateral surfaces of this cluster, but does not reach the apical surface or penetrate into the cluster. Using genetically encoded Ca(2+) sensors, we found that mitochondria take up Ca(2+) when it accumulates either in the cone cell body or outer segment. Blocking mitochondrial Ca(2+) uniporter activity compromises the ability of mitochondria to maintain distinct Ca(2+) domains. Together, our findings indicate that mitochondria can modulate subcellular functional specialization in photoreceptors.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Ca(2+) homeostasis is essential for the survival and function of retinal photoreceptors. Separate pools of Ca(2+) regulate phototransduction in the outer segment, metabolism in the cell body, and neurotransmitter release at the synaptic terminal. We investigated the role of mitochondria in compartmentalization of Ca(2+) We found that mitochondria form a dense cluster that acts as a diffusion barrier between the outer segment and cell body. The cluster is surprisingly only partially surrounded by the endoplasmic reticulum, a key mediator of mitochondrial Ca(2+) uptake. Blocking the uptake of Ca(2+) by mitochondria causes redistribution of Ca(2+) throughout the cell. Our results show that mitochondrial Ca(2+) uptake in photoreceptors is complex and plays an essential role in normal function. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/372061-12$15.00/0.

  9. The Ciliopathy Gene ahi1 Is Required for Zebrafish Cone Photoreceptor Outer Segment Morphogenesis and Survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lessieur, Emma M.; Fogerty, Joseph; Gaivin, Robert J.; Song, Ping; Perkins, Brian D.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose Joubert syndrome (JBTS) is an autosomal recessive ciliopathy with considerable phenotypic variability. In addition to central nervous system abnormalities, a subset of JBTS patients exhibit retinal dystrophy and/or kidney disease. Mutations in the AHI1 gene are causative for approximately 10% of all JBTS cases. The purpose of this study was to generate ahi1 mutant alleles in zebrafish and to characterize the retinal phenotypes. Methods Zebrafish ahi1 mutants were generated using transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs). Expression analysis was performed by whole-mount in situ hybridization. Anatomic and molecular characterization of photoreceptors was investigated by histology, electron microscopy, and immunohistochemistry. The optokinetic response (OKR) behavior assay was used to assess visual function. Kidney cilia were evaluated by whole-mount immunostaining. Results The ahi1lri46 mutation in zebrafish resulted in shorter cone outer segments but did not affect visual behavior at 5 days after fertilization (dpf). No defects in rod morphology or rhodopsin localization were observed at 5 dpf. By 5 months of age, cone degeneration and rhodopsin mislocalization in rod photoreceptors was observed. The connecting cilium formed normally and Cc2d2a and Cep290 localized properly. Distal pronephric duct cilia were absent in mutant fish; however, only 9% of ahi1 mutants had kidney cysts by 5 dpf, suggesting that the pronephros remained largely functional. Conclusions The results indicate that Ahi1 is required for photoreceptor disc morphogenesis and outer segment maintenance in zebrafish. PMID:28118669

  10. [Retinal Cell Therapy Using iPS Cells].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Masayo

    2016-03-01

    is now being investigated in preclinical research. Among the mixture of rod and cone photoreceptors in the donor cells, the percentage of cone photoreceptors is still low. Donor cells with more. cone photoreceptors will be needed. If that will work well, photoreceptor transplantation will be the first example of neural network reconstruction in the central nervous system. These efforts will reach to variety of retinal cell transplantations in the future.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. Photobiomodulation reduces photoreceptor death and regulates cytoprotection in early states of P23H retinal dystrophy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, Diana K.; Gopalakrishnan, Sandeep; Schmitt, Heather; Abroe, Betsy; Stoehr, Michele; Dubis, Adam; Carroll, Joseph; Stone, Jonathan; Valter, Krisztina; Eells, Janis

    2013-03-01

    Irradiation by light in the far-red to near-infrared (NIR) region of the spectrum (photobiomodulation, PBM) has been demonstrated to attenuate the severity of neurodegenerative disease in experimental and clinical studies. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that 670 nm PBM would protect against the loss of retinal function and improve photoreceptor survival in a rodent model of retinitis pigmentosa, the P23H transgenic rat. P23H rat pups were treated once per day with a 670 nm LED array (180 sec treatments at 50 mW/cm2; fluence 9 joules/cm2) (Quantum Devices Inc., Barneveld WI) from postnatal day (p) 16-20 or from p10-20. Sham-treated rats were restrained, but not exposed to NIR light. The status of the retina was determined at p22 by assessment of mitochondrial function, oxidative stress and cell death. In a second series of studies, retinal status was assessed at p30 by measuring photoreceptor function by ERG and retinal morphology by Spectral Domain Optical Coherence Tomography (SD-OCT). 670 nm PBM increased retinal mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase activity and upregulated the retina's production of the key mitochondrial antioxidant enzyme, MnSOD. PBM also attenuated photoreceptor cell loss and improved photoreceptor function. PBM protects photoreceptors in the developing P23H retina, by augmenting mitochondrial function and stimulating antioxidant protective pathways. Photobiomodulation may have therapeutic potential, where mitochondrial damage is a step in the death of photoreceptors.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Telescopic drilling rod

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kagan, I.L.; Berezov, S.I.; Gavrilov, G.A.; Goykhman, Ya.A.; Makushkin, D.O.; Rachev, M.P.; Voynich, L.K.

    1981-09-07

    The telescopic drilling rod includes an inner section of the rod, in whose center cable has been passed and is attached a bearing assembly connecting it to the winch, outer section of rod along which there is pipeline connecting the working cavity formed by the inner section of rod and the housing, installed on the lower end of the outer section of rod, with cavity formed by framework of the guide swivel and end piece and connected to the hydraulic system of the machine by pipeline, as well as clamping elements. In order to drill wells to a depth greater than the length of the outer sectrion of the rod, the latter jointly with the inner section of rod is lowered into the extreme lower position until swivel rests on the feed mechanism. With further slipping of cable and the absence of pressure in the hydraulic system, clamping elements do not have an effect on the inner section of rod. It has the opportunity to freely move along the outer section of rod downwards to the face. When pressure is supplied on pipeline into cavity and further through pipeline into working cavity, the inner section of rod is clamped with feed of the outer section in the process of drilling, both sections move jointly. Because of the link between working cavity of sleeve installed on the lower end of the outer section of rod, and the hydraulic system of the machine through the swivel cavity, it is possible to fix the drilling rod in any mutual axial position of the section.

  15. Synthesis of hierarchical TiO2 flower-rod and application in CdSe/CdS co-sensitized solar cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Libo; Li, Zhen; Liu, Yingbo; Cheng, Fa; Sun, Shuqing

    2014-12-01

    A hierarchical double-layered TiO2 flower-rod structure composed of three-dimensional (3D) TiO2 flowers and one-dimensional (1D) nanorods on transparent fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO) conducting glass has been synthesized by a facile hydrothermal method. The possible formation mechanism of the hierarchical architecture is also proposed. When used in CdSe/CdS quantum dots co-sensitized solar cells (QDSSCs), the 1D ordered rutile nanorods at bottom can accelerate the electron transfer rate by providing direct electrical pathway for photogenerated electrons, while the 3D flowers formed on the top of nanorods can increase the adsorption of QDs due to the enlarged areas, and can also be used as a scattering layer. The performance of the CdSe/CdS/TiO2 flower-rod solar cell can achieve a short-circuit current density (Jsc) of 13.46 mA cm-2, and a open-circuit voltage (Voc) of 0.42 V, with a maximum power conversion efficiency of 2.31% under one sun illumination (AM 1.5 G, 100 mW cm-2), which is greatly higher than that of CdSe/CdS/TiO2 nanorod solar cell (1.63%).

  16. Preparation of carbon alloy catalysts for polymer electrolyte fuel cells from nitrogen-containing rigid-rod polymers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chokai, Masayuki [Department of Organic and Polymeric Materials, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Ookayama, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8552 (Japan); Integrative Technology Research Institute, Teijin Ltd., 4-3-2, Asahigaoka, Hino, Tokyo 191-8512 (Japan); Taniguchi, Masataka; Shinoda, Tsuyoshi; Nabae, Yuta; Kuroki, Shigeki; Hayakawa, Teruaki; Kakimoto, Masa-aki [Department of Organic and Polymeric Materials, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Ookayama, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8552 (Japan); Moriya, Shogo; Matsubayashi, Katsuyuki [Department of Organic and Polymeric Materials, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Ookayama, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8552 (Japan); Business Development Division, Nisshinbo Holdings, Inc., 1-2-3, Onodai, Midori-ku, Chiba 267-0056 (Japan); Ozaki, Jun-ichi [Department of Organic and Polymeric Materials, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Ookayama, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8552 (Japan); Department of Nanomaterial Systems, Graduate School of Engineering, Gunma University, 1-5-1, Tenjin-cho, Kiryu, Gunma 376-8515 (Japan); Miyata, Seizo [Department of Organic and Polymeric Materials, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Ookayama, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8552 (Japan); New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization, 1310 Omiya-cho, Saiwai-ku, Kawasaki, Kanagawa 212-8554 (Japan)

    2010-09-15

    Carbon alloy catalysts (CAC), non-precious metal catalysts for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), were prepared from various kinds of nitrogen-containing rigid-rod aromatic polymers, polyimides, polyamides and azoles, by carbonization at 900 C under nitrogen flow. The catalytic activity for ORR was evaluated by the onset potential, which was taken at a current density of -2 {mu}A cm{sup -2}. Carbonized polymers having high nitrogen content showed higher onset potential. In particular, CACs derived from azole (Az5) had an onset potential of 0.8 V, despite being was prepared without any metals. (author)

  17. The determination of total cGMP levels in rod outer segments from intact toad photoreceptors in response to light superimposed on background and to consecutive flashes: a second light flash accelerates the dark recovery rate of cGMP levels in control media, but not in Na(+)-free, low Ca2+ medium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, A I; Blazynski, C

    1993-01-01

    In previous experiments we established that a light flash reduced cGMP levels of toad rod outer segments within the transduction time interval, but that recovery of the dark level of cGMP occurred more slowly than reported electrophysiological recovery of membrane potential. We now report that a second light flash accelerates the recovery rate of total cGMP following an initial flash, but that this acceleration is blocked in a medium which is both sodium and calcium deficient. We also noted that calcium deficiency only elevated cGMP levels when sodium was present. For other experiments, we recorded ERG or aspartate isolated PIII responses from eyecups or retinas mounted on our quick-freeze apparatus, the light stimuli originating from the double light-bench of the latter. Whereas background illumination depressed cGMP, no detectable further cGMP loss accompanied the electrical response to a flash superimposed on the background.

  18. Replacement gene therapy with a human RPGRIP1 sequence slows photoreceptor degeneration in a murine model of Leber congenital amaurosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pawlyk, Basil S; Bulgakov, Oleg V; Liu, Xiaoqing; Xu, Xiaoyun; Adamian, Michael; Sun, Xun; Khani, Shahrokh C; Berson, Eliot L; Sandberg, Michael A; Li, Tiansen

    2010-08-01

    RPGR-interacting protein-1 (RPGRIP1) is localized in the photoreceptor-connecting cilium, where it anchors the RPGR (retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator) protein, and its function is essential for photoreceptor maintenance. Genetic defect in RPGRIP1 is a known cause of Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a severe, early-onset form of retinal degeneration. We evaluated the efficacy of replacement gene therapy in a murine model of LCA carrying a targeted disruption of RPGRIP1. The replacement construct, packaged in an adeno-associated virus serotype 8 (AAV8) vector, used a rhodopsin kinase gene promoter to drive RPGRIP1 expression. Both promoter and transgene were of human origin. After subretinal delivery of the replacement gene in the mutant mice, human RPGRIP1 was expressed specifically in photoreceptors, localized correctly in the connecting cilia, and restored the normal localization of RPGR. Electroretinogram and histological examinations showed better preservation of rod and cone photoreceptor function and improved photoreceptor survival in the treated eyes. This study demonstrates the efficacy of human gene replacement therapy and validates a gene therapy design for future clinical trials in patients afflicted with this condition. Our results also have therapeutic implications for other forms of retinal degenerations attributable to a ciliary defect.

  19. Arap1 Deficiency Causes Photoreceptor Degeneration in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moshiri, Ala; Humpal, Devin; Leonard, Brian C.; Imai, Denise M.; Tham, Addy; Bower, Lynette; Clary, Dave; Glaser, Thomas M.; Lloyd, K. C. Kent; Murphy, Christopher J.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose Small guanosine triphosphatase (GTPase) ADP-ribosylation factors (Arfs) regulate membrane traffic and actin reorganization under the control of GTPase-activating proteins (GAPs). Arap1 is an Arf-directed GAP that inhibits the trafficking of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) to the early endosome, but the diversity of its functions is incompletely understood. The aim of this study was to determine the role of Arap1 in the mammalian retina. Methods Genetically engineered Arap1 knockout mice were screened for ocular abnormalities in the National Institutes of Health Knockout Mouse Production and Phenotyping (KOMP2) Project. Arap1 knockout and wild-type eyes were imaged using optical coherence tomography and fundus photography, and analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Results Arap1−/− mice develop a normal appearing retina, but undergo photoreceptor degeneration starting at 4 weeks postnatal age. The fundus appearance of mutants is notable for pigmentary changes, optic nerve pallor, vascular attenuation, and outer retinal thinning, reminiscent of retinitis pigmentosa in humans. Immunohistochemical studies suggest the cell death is predominantly in the outer nuclear layer. Functional evaluation of the retina by electroretinography reveals amplitudes are reduced. Arap1 is detected most notably in Müller glia, and not in photoreceptors, implicating a role for Müller glia in photoreceptor survival. Conclusions Arap1 is necessary for normal photoreceptor survival in mice, and may be a novel gene relevant to human retinal degenerative processes, although its mechanism is unknown. Further studies in this mouse model of retinal degeneration will give insights into the cellular functions and signaling pathways in which Arap1 participates. PMID:28324111

  20. A five-primary photostimulator suitable for studying intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cell functions in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Dingcai; Nicandro, Nathaniel; Barrionuevo, Pablo A

    2015-01-26

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) can respond to light directly through self-contained photopigment, melanopsin. IpRGCs also receive synaptic inputs from rods and cones. Thus, studying ipRGC functions requires a novel photostimulating method that can account for all of the photoreceptor inputs. Here, we introduced an inexpensive LED-based five-primary photostimulator that can control the excitations of rods, S-, M-, L-cones, and melanopsin-containing ipRGCs in humans at constant background photoreceptor excitation levels, a critical requirement for studying the adaptation behavior of ipRGCs with rod, cone, or melanopsin input. We described the theory and technical aspects (including optics, electronics, software, and calibration) of the five-primary photostimulator. Then we presented two preliminary studies using the photostimulator we have implemented to measure melanopsin-mediated pupil responses and temporal contrast sensitivity function (TCSF). The results showed that the S-cone input to pupil responses was antagonistic to the L-, M- or melanopsin inputs, consistent with an S-OFF and (L + M)-ON response property of primate ipRGCs (Dacey et al., 2005). In addition, the melanopsin-mediated TCSF had a distinctive pattern compared with L + M or S-cone mediated TCSF. Other than controlling individual photoreceptor excitation independently, the five-primary photostimulator has the flexibility in presenting stimuli modulating any combination of photoreceptor excitations, which allows researchers to study the mechanisms by which ipRGCs combine various photoreceptor inputs. © 2015 ARVO.

  1. No evidence for a genetic blueprint: The case of the "complex" mammalian photoreceptor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G Kumaramanickavel

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite the intensity of the search for genes causing inherited retinal degenerations over the past 3 decades, of the approximately 200 disease genes identified to date, all appear to be ordinary housekeeping genes specifying proteins playing basic structural and functional roles in the mature photoreceptor cells. No genes or genetic elements have been identified which can be construed as having a specific morphogenic role, directing the development of the cytoarchitecture of any particular retinal cell. The evidence suggests that the cytoarchitecture of the retinal photoreceptors, although enormously complex, arises from the self-organization of the cells constituents without any regulation or direction from an external genetic blueprint.

  2. Studies of colicin action on wall-less stable L-forms of Escherichia coli. I. Degree of attachment and of killing effect on rods and stable L-form cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smarda, J; Schuhmann, E

    1979-01-01

    Escherichia coli strains B and K12 W 1655 F+ are able to bind more lethal units of colicins E2, E3, G, H, Ia, and K+ X per one stable L-form cell (of the protoplast type) than per one rod cell; colicin D is bound in a higher amount on E. coli B rods. This pattern remains unchanged, if the same colicins are attached on chloroform-killed cells of both forms. Rods of both E. coli strains are more sensitive to colicins D, E2, E3, K + X (as--in the strain B--to colicin Ia) than cells of the respective L-forms. In the strain W 1655 F+ both cell forms are equally highly sensitive to colicin Ia. The stable L-forms of both strains are much more sensitive to colicins G and H than the rods. Thus the Gram-negative cell wall decreases the probability of a colicin molecule to get attached to its receptor in the cytoplasmic membrane. On the other hand, in E. coli cells the attachment of most colicin molecules to the wall receptors increases the probability of their biological effect. There is no such effect of the wall-attachment on the action of colicins G or H. The strain B is tolerant to colicin E2, while being resistant to E3; thus the cytoplasmic membrane receptor sites for them are not identical.

  3. Unidirectional photoreceptor-to-Muller glia coupling and unique K+ channel expression in Caiman retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Astrid Zayas-Santiago

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Müller cells, the principal glial cells of the vertebrate retina, are fundamental for the maintenance and function of neuronal cells. In most vertebrates, including humans, Müller cells abundantly express Kir4.1 inwardly rectifying potassium channels responsible for hyperpolarized membrane potential and for various vital functions such as potassium buffering and glutamate clearance; inter-species differences in Kir4.1 expression were, however, observed. Localization and function of potassium channels in Müller cells from the retina of crocodiles remain, hitherto, unknown. METHODS: We studied retinae of the Spectacled caiman (Caiman crocodilus fuscus, endowed with both diurnal and nocturnal vision, by (i immunohistochemistry, (ii whole-cell voltage-clamp, and (iii fluorescent dye tracing to investigate K+ channel distribution and glia-to-neuron communications. RESULTS: Immunohistochemistry revealed that caiman Müller cells, similarly to other vertebrates, express vimentin, GFAP, S100β, and glutamine synthetase. In contrast, Kir4.1 channel protein was not found in Müller cells but was localized in photoreceptor cells. Instead, 2P-domain TASK-1 channels were expressed in Müller cells. Electrophysiological properties of enzymatically dissociated Müller cells without photoreceptors and isolated Müller cells with adhering photoreceptors were significantly different. This suggests ion coupling between Müller cells and photoreceptors in the caiman retina. Sulforhodamine-B injected into cones permeated to adhering Müller cells thus revealing a uni-directional dye coupling. CONCLUSION: Our data indicate that caiman Müller glial cells are unique among vertebrates studied so far by predominantly expressing TASK-1 rather than Kir4.1 K+ channels and by bi-directional ion and uni-directional dye coupling to photoreceptor cells. This coupling may play an important role in specific glia-neuron signaling pathways and in a new type of K

  4. Calcium imaging demonstrates colocalization of calcium influx and extrusion in fly photoreceptors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oberwinkler, J; Stavenga, DG; Stevens, Charles F.

    2000-01-01

    During illumination. Ca2+ enters fly photoreceptor cells through light-activated channels that are located in the rhabdomere, the compartment specialized for phototransduction. From the rhabdomere. Ca2+ diffuses into the cell body. We visualize this process by rapidly imaging the fluorescence in a c

  5. Calcium imaging demonstrates colocalization of calcium influx and extrusion in fly photoreceptors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oberwinkler, J; Stavenga, DG; Stevens, Charles F.

    2000-01-01

    During illumination. Ca2+ enters fly photoreceptor cells through light-activated channels that are located in the rhabdomere, the compartment specialized for phototransduction. From the rhabdomere. Ca2+ diffuses into the cell body. We visualize this process by rapidly imaging the fluorescence in a

  6. Photoreceptor Mediated Plant Growth Responses: Implications for Photoreceptor Engineering toward Improved Performance in Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ophilia I. L. Mawphlang

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Rising temperatures during growing seasons coupled with altered precipitation rates presents a challenging task of improving crop productivity for overcoming such altered weather patterns and cater to a growing population. Light is a critical environmental factor that exerts a powerful influence on plant growth and development ranging from seed germination to flowering and fruiting. Higher plants utilize a suite of complex photoreceptor proteins to perceive surrounding red/far-red (phytochromes, blue/UV-A (cryptochromes, phototropins, ZTL/FKF1/LKP2, and UV-B light (UVR8. While genomic studies have also shown that light induces extensive reprogramming of gene expression patterns in plants, molecular genetic studies have shown that manipulation of one or more photoreceptors can result in modification of agronomically beneficial traits. Such information can assist researchers to engineer photoreceptors via genome editing technologies to alter expression or even sensitivity thresholds of native photoreceptors for targeting aspects of plant growth that can confer superior agronomic value to the engineered crops. Here we summarize the agronomically important plant growth processes influenced by photoreceptors in crop species, alongwith the functional interactions between different photoreceptors and phytohormones in regulating these responses. We also discuss the potential utility of synthetic biology approaches in photobiology for improving agronomically beneficial traits of crop plants by engineering designer photoreceptors.

  7. Preservation of cone photoreceptors after a rapid yet transient degeneration and remodeling in cone-only Nrl-/- mouse retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger, Jerome E; Ranganath, Keerthi; Zhao, Lian; Cojocaru, Radu I; Brooks, Matthew; Gotoh, Norimoto; Veleri, Shobi; Hiriyanna, Avinash; Rachel, Rivka A; Campos, Maria Mercedes; Fariss, Robert N; Wong, Wai T; Swaroop, Anand

    2012-01-11

    Cone photoreceptors are the primary initiator of visual transduction in the human retina. Dysfunction or death of rod photoreceptors precedes cone loss in many retinal and macular degenerative diseases, suggesting a rod-dependent trophic support for cone survival. Rod differentiation and homeostasis are dependent on the basic motif leucine zipper transcription factor neural retina leucine zipper (NRL). The loss of Nrl (Nrl(-/-)) in mice results in a retina with predominantly S-opsin-containing cones that exhibit molecular and functional characteristics of wild-type cones. Here, we report that Nrl(-/-) retina undergoes a rapid but transient period of degeneration in early adulthood, with cone apoptosis, retinal detachment, alterations in retinal vessel structure, and activation and translocation of retinal microglia. However, cone degeneration stabilizes by 4 months of age, resulting in a thinner but intact outer nuclear layer with residual cones expressing S- and M-opsins and a preserved photopic electroretinogram. At this stage, microglia translocate back to the inner retina and reacquire a quiescent morphology. Gene profiling analysis during the period of transient degeneration reveals misregulation of genes related to stress response and inflammation, implying their involvement in cone death. The Nrl(-/-) mouse illustrates the long-term viability of cones in the absence of rods and retinal pigment epithelium defects in a rodless retina. We propose that Nrl(-/-) retina may serve as a model for elucidating mechanisms of cone homeostasis and degeneration that would be relevant to understanding diseases of the cone-dominant human macula.

  8. Bestrophinopathy: An RPE-photoreceptor interface disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guziewicz, Karina E; Sinha, Divya; Gómez, Néstor M; Zorych, Kathryn; Dutrow, Emily V; Dhingra, Anuradha; Mullins, Robert F; Stone, Edwin M; Gamm, David M; Boesze-Battaglia, Kathleen; Aguirre, Gustavo D

    2017-01-19

    Bestrophinopathies, one of the most common forms of inherited macular degenerations, are caused by mutations in the BEST1 gene expressed in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Both human and canine BEST1-linked maculopathies are characterized by abnormal accumulation of autofluorescent material within RPE cells and bilateral macular or multifocal lesions; however, the specific mechanism leading to the formation of these lesions remains unclear. We now provide an overview of the current state of knowledge on the molecular pathology of bestrophinopathies, and explore factors promoting formation of RPE-neuroretinal separations, using the first spontaneous animal model of BEST1-associated retinopathies, canine Best (cBest). Here, we characterize the nature of the autofluorescent RPE cell inclusions and report matching spectral signatures of RPE-associated fluorophores between human and canine retinae, indicating an analogous composition of endogenous RPE deposits in Best Vitelliform Macular Dystrophy (BVMD) patients and its canine disease model. This study also exposes a range of biochemical and structural abnormalities at the RPE-photoreceptor interface related to the impaired cone-associated microvillar ensheathment and compromised insoluble interphotoreceptor matrix (IPM), the major pathological culprits responsible for weakening of the RPE-neuroretina interactions, and consequently, formation of vitelliform lesions. These salient alterations detected at the RPE apical domain in cBest as well as in BVMD- and ARB-hiPSC-RPE model systems provide novel insights into the pathological mechanism of BEST1-linked disorders that will allow for development of critical outcome measures guiding therapeutic strategies for bestrophinopathies.

  9. cGMP in Mouse Rods: the spatiotemporal dynamics underlying single photon responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Owen P. Gross

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Vertebrate vision begins when retinal photoreceptors transduce photons into membrane hyperpolarization, which reduces glutamate release onto second-order neurons. In rod photoreceptors, transduction of single photons is achieved by a well-understood G-protein cascade that modulates cGMP levels, and in turn, cGMP-sensitive inward current. The spatial extent and depth of the decline in cGMP during the single photon response have been major issues in phototransduction research since the discovery that single photons elicit substantial and reproducible changes in membrane current. The spatial profile of cGMP decline during the single photon response affects signal gain, and thus may contribute to reduction of trial-to-trial fluctuations in the single photon response. Here we summarize the general principles of rod phototransduction, emphasizing recent advances in resolving the spatiotemporal dynamics of cGMP during the single photon response.

  10. Biosynthesis of glycerolipid molecular species in photoreceptor membranes of frog retina

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiegand, R.D.; Louie, K.; Anderson, R.E. (Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX (USA))

    1987-05-01

    Phospholipid (PL) molecular species of vertebrate retinal photoreceptor cells are unique in that they contain two polyunsaturated fatty acids per molecule. Docosahexaenoic acid (22:6 {omega}3) is the major component of these dipolyunsaturate species (DPS), which also contain 20:4{omega}6, 22:4{omega}6, 22:5{omega}6, and 22:5{omega}3. We have studied the de novo synthesis and metabolism of the (DPS) and other PL molecular species in frog rod outer segments (ROS) following intravitreal injection of 2-({sup 3}H)-glycerol. At 1, 2, 4, and 8 days after injection, ROS were prepared, PL extracted, and phosphatidylcholine (PC), phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), and phosphatidylserine (PS) isolated. PC, PE, and PS were converted to diglycerides (DG's) with phospholipase C. DG's were derivatized, fractionated into molecular species by HPLC, quantitated, and counted for radioactivity. The following were observed: (1) Specific activities (SA) of the PC DPS were 3-5 times higher than the same species in either PE or PS. (2) SA of the PC monopolyunsaturate species (MPS) (species which contain 22:6{omega}3 and/or 16:0 or 18:0) were 3-5 times lower than the SA of the PC DPS. In contrast, SA of PE MPS were 2-5 times higher than the SA of the PE DPS. (3) The major PS MPS synthesized contained 18:0 and 22:6{omega}3. SA of that species were similar to SA of the PS DPS. The data support the suggestion that PC DPS are synthesized and/or incorporated in ROS at a greater rate than the same species in either PE or PS. Our study thus provides evidence for different rates of synthesis and/or incorporation of the various molecular species of PC, PE, and PS in ROS.

  11. Calcium-dependent potassium current in barnacle photoreceptor

    OpenAIRE

    1981-01-01

    When barnacle lateral eye photoreceptors are depolarized to membrane potentials of 0 to +50 mV in the dark, the plot of outward current through the cell membrane against time has two distinct maxima. The first maximum occurs 5-10 ms after the depolarization began. The current then decays to a minimum at approximately 500 ms after the onset of depolarization, and then increases to a second maximum 4-6 s after the depolarization began. If depolarization is maintained, the current again decays t...

  12. Melanopsin Phototransduction Contributes to Light-Evoked Choroidal Expansion and Rod L-Type Calcium Channel Function In Vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berkowitz, Bruce A.; Schmidt, Tiffany; Podolsky, Robert H.; Roberts, Robin

    2016-01-01

    Purpose In humans, rodents, and pigeons, the dark → light transition signals nonretinal brain tissue to increase choroidal thickness, a major control element of choroidal blood flow, and thus of photoreceptor and retinal pigment epithelium function. However, it is unclear which photopigments in the retina relay the light signal to the brain. Here, we test the hypothesis that melanopsin (Opn4)-regulated phototransduction modulates light-evoked choroidal thickness expansion in mice. Methods Two-month-old C57Bl/6 wild-type (B6), 4- to 5-month-old C57Bl/6/129S6 wild-type (B6 + S6), and 2-month-old melanopsin knockout (Opn4−/−) on a B6 + S6 background were studied. Retinal anatomy was evaluated in vivo by optical coherence tomography and MRI. Choroidal thickness in dark and light were measured by diffusion-weighted MRI. Rod cell L-type calcium channel (LTCC) function in dark and light (manganese-enhanced MRI [MEMRI]) was also measured. Results Opn4−/− mice did not show the light-evoked expansion of choroidal thickness observed in B6 and B6 + S6 controls. Additionally, Opn4−/− mice had lower than normal rod cell and inner retinal LTCC function in the dark but not in the light. These deficits were not due to structural abnormalities because retinal laminar architecture and thickness, and choroidal thickness in the Opn4−/− mice were similar to controls. Conclusions First time evidence is provided that melanopsin phototransduction contributes to dark → light control of murine choroidal thickness. The data also highlight a contribution in vivo of melanopsin phototransduction to rod cell and inner retinal depolarization in the dark. PMID:27727394

  13. Ciliary hair cells and cuticular photoreceptor of the hornet Vespa orientalis as components of a gravity detecting system : an SEM/TEM investigation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jongebloed, WL; Rosenzweig, E; Kalicharan, D; van der Want, JJL; Ishay, JS

    1999-01-01

    This paper describes three types of hair cell configurations with stereo- and kinocilia in the head of the hornet; these were encountered at the vertex and frons regions adjacent to the three ocelli and are assumed to be part of the hornet's gravity detecting system together with cuticular

  14. The carcinine transporter CarT is required in Drosophila photoreceptor neurons to sustain histamine recycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stenesen, Drew; Moehlman, Andrew T; Krämer, Helmut

    2015-12-14

    Synaptic transmission from Drosophila photoreceptors to lamina neurons requires recycling of histamine neurotransmitter. Synaptic histamine is cleared by uptake into glia and conversion into carcinine, which functions as transport metabolite. How carcinine is transported from glia to photoreceptor neurons remains unclear. In a targeted RNAi screen for genes involved in this pathway, we identified carT, which encodes a member of the SLC22A transporter family. CarT expression in photoreceptors is necessary and sufficient for fly vision and behavior. Carcinine accumulates in the lamina of carT flies. Wild-type levels are restored by photoreceptor-specific expression of CarT, and endogenous tagging suggests CarT localizes to synaptic endings. Heterologous expression of CarT in S2 cells is sufficient for carcinine uptake, demonstrating the ability of CarT to utilize carcinine as a transport substrate. Together, our results demonstrate that CarT transports the histamine metabolite carcinine into photoreceptor neurons, thus contributing an essential step to the histamine-carcinine cycle.

  15. The carcinine transporter CarT is required in Drosophila photoreceptor neurons to sustain histamine recycling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stenesen, Drew; Moehlman, Andrew T; Krämer, Helmut

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic transmission from Drosophila photoreceptors to lamina neurons requires recycling of histamine neurotransmitter. Synaptic histamine is cleared by uptake into glia and conversion into carcinine, which functions as transport metabolite. How carcinine is transported from glia to photoreceptor neurons remains unclear. In a targeted RNAi screen for genes involved in this pathway, we identified carT, which encodes a member of the SLC22A transporter family. CarT expression in photoreceptors is necessary and sufficient for fly vision and behavior. Carcinine accumulates in the lamina of carT flies. Wild-type levels are restored by photoreceptor-specific expression of CarT, and endogenous tagging suggests CarT localizes to synaptic endings. Heterologous expression of CarT in S2 cells is sufficient for carcinine uptake, demonstrating the ability of CarT to utilize carcinine as a transport substrate. Together, our results demonstrate that CarT transports the histamine metabolite carcinine into photoreceptor neurons, thus contributing an essential step to the histamine–carcinine cycle. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10972.001 PMID:26653853

  16. Use of Hydrogen as a Novel Therapeutic Strategy Against Photoreceptor Degeneration in Retinitis Pigmentosa Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tao, Ye; Geng, Lei; Wang, Liqiang; Xu, Weiwei; Qin, Limin; Peng, Guanghua; Huang, Yi Fei; Yang, Ji xue

    2016-03-08

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a heterogeneous group of inherited retinal dystrophies characterized by progressive photoreceptor apoptosis. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been recognized as critical initiators of the photoreceptor apoptosis in RP. Photoreceptor survival in RP mutants will not only require the inhibition of effectors of apoptotic machinery, but also the elimination of the initiating upstream signals, such as ROS. These cytotoxic ROS should be neutralized by the antioxidant defense system, otherwise they would interact with the macromolecules essential for photoreceptor survival. Hydrogen is a promising gaseous agent that has come to the forefront of therapeutic research over the last few years. It has been verified that hydrogen is capable of neutralizing the cytotoxic ROS selectively, rectifying abnormities in the apoptotic cascades, and attenuating the related inflammatory response. Hydrogen is so mild that it does not disturb the metabolic oxidation-reduction reactions or disrupt the physiologic ROS involved in cell signaling. Based on these findings, we hypothesize that hydrogen might be an effective therapeutic agent to slow or prevent photoreceptor degeneration in RP retinas. It is a logical step to test hydrogen for therapeutic use in multiple RP animal models, and ultimately in human RP patients.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vithiyanjali Sothilingam

    Full Text Available 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.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.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.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.

  18. LINC complexes mediate the positioning of cone photoreceptor nuclei in mouse retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Razafsky

    Full Text Available It has long been observed that many neuronal types position their nuclei within restricted cytoplasmic boundaries. A striking example is the apical localization of cone photoreceptors nuclei at the outer edge of the outer nuclear layer of mammalian retinas. Yet, little is known about how such nuclear spatial confinement is achieved and further maintained. Linkers of the Nucleoskeleton to the Cytoskeleton (LINC complexes consist of evolutionary-conserved macromolecular assemblies that span the nuclear envelope to connect the nucleus with the peripheral cytoskeleton. Here, we applied a new transgenic strategy to disrupt LINC complexes either in cones or rods. In adult cones, we observed a drastic nuclear mislocalization on the basal side of the ONL that affected cone terminals overall architecture. We further provide evidence that this phenotype may stem from the inability of cone precursor nuclei to migrate towards the apical side of the outer nuclear layer during early postnatal retinal development. By contrast, disruption of LINC complexes within rod photoreceptors, whose nuclei are scattered across the outer nuclear layer, had no effect on the positioning of their nuclei thereby emphasizing differential requirements for LINC complexes by different neuronal types. We further show that Sun1, a component of LINC complexes, but not A-type lamins, which interact with LINC complexes at the nuclear envelope, participate in cone nuclei positioning. This study provides key mechanistic aspects underlying the well-known spatial confinement of cone nuclei as well as a new mouse model to evaluate the pathological relevance of nuclear mispositioning.

  19. G-quartet oligonucleotide mediated delivery of proteins into photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium via intravitreal injection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leaderer, Derek; Cashman, Siobhan M; Kumar-Singh, Rajendra

    2016-04-01

    There is currently no available method to efficiently deliver proteins across the plasma membrane of photoreceptor or retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells in vivo. Thus, current clinical application of recombinant proteins in ophthalmology is limited to the use of proteins that perform their biological function extracellularly. The ability to traverse biological membranes would enable the mobilization of a significantly larger number of proteins with previously well characterized properties. Nucleolin is abundantly present on the surface of rapidly dividing cells including cancer cells. Surprisingly, nucleolin is also present on the surface of photoreceptor cell bodies. Here we investigated whether nucleolin can be utilized as a gateway for the delivery of proteins into retinal cells following intravitreal injection. AS1411 is a G-quartet aptamer capable of targeting nucleolin. Subsequent to intravitreal injection, fluorescently labeled AS1411 localized to various retinal cell types including the photoreceptors and RPE. AS1411 linked to streptavidin (a ∼50 kDa protein) via a biotin bridge enabled the uptake of Streptavidin into photoreceptors and RPE. AS1411-Streptavidin conjugate applied topically to the cornea allowed for uptake of the conjugate into the nucleus and cytoplasm of corneal endothelial cells. Clinical relevance of AS1411 as a delivery vehicle was strongly indicated by demonstration of the presence of cell surface nucleolin on the photoreceptors, inner neurons and ganglion cells of human retina. These data support exploration of AS1411 as a means of delivering therapeutic proteins to diseased retina.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. A study of the human rod and cone electroretinogram a-wave component

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barraco, R.; Persano Adorno, D.; Bellomonte, L.; Brai, M.

    2009-03-01

    The study of the electrical response of the retina to a luminous stimulus is one of the main fields of research in ocular electrophysiology. The features of the first component (a-wave) of the retinal response reflect the functional integrity of the two populations of photoreceptors: rods and cones. We fit the a-wave for pathological subjects with functions that account for possible mechanisms governing the kinetics of the photoreceptors. The paper extends a previous analysis, carried out for normal subjects, in which both populations are active, to patients affected by two particular diseases that reduce the working populations to only one. The pathologies investigated are Achromatopsia, a cone disease, and Congenital Stationary Night Blindness, a rod problem. We present evidence that the analysis of a pathological a-wave can be employed to quantitatively measure either cone or rod activities and to test hypotheses about their responses. The results show that the photoreceptoral responses differ in the two cases and functions implying a different number of photocascade stages are necessary to achieve a correct modeling of the early phototransduction process. Numerical values of the parameters characterizing the best-fit functions are given and discussed.

  2. Developmental dynamics of cone photoreceptors in the eel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Semo Ma'ayan

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many fish alter their expressed visual pigments during development. The number of retinal opsins expressed and their type is normally related to the environment in which they live. Eels are known to change the expression of their rod opsins as they mature, but might they also change the expression of their cone opsins? Results The Rh2 and Sws2 opsin sequences from the European Eel were isolated, sequenced and expressed in vitro for an accurate measurement of their λmax values. In situ hybridisation revealed that glass eels express only rh2 opsin in their cone photoreceptors, while larger yellow eels continue to express rh2 opsin in the majority of their cones, but also have Conclusions Larger yellow and silver European eels express two different cone opsins, rh2 and sws2. This work demonstrates that only the Rh2 cone opsin is present in younger fish (smaller yellow and glass, the sws2 opsin being expressed additionally only by older fish and only in

  3. Metallography and Microanalysis of Qinshan PhaseⅠ NPP Spent Fuel Rods

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    QIAN; Jin; BIAN; Wei; GUO; Li-na; GUO; Yi-fan; CHU; Feng-min; LIANG; Zheng-qiang

    2015-01-01

    Qinshan PhaseⅠNPP is a first domestic commercial PWR and its fuel rods and fuel assembly were designed and manufactured by China.In order to assess the irradiation properties of the fuel rods,8spent fuel rods which were drew out from 3fuel assemblies were transferred to CIAE hot cells for post irradiation examination(PIE)in 2014.The cladding material of the fuel

  4. MAS NMR study of the photoreceptor phytochrome

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rohmer, Thierry

    2009-01-01

    Plants, algae and bacteria respond to light in various manners. The effect of light on the growth of plants is called photomorphogenesis and is regulated by the photoreceptor protein named phytochrome. Phytochrome is formed in the dark in its inactive red-absorbing (Pr) state and transformed upon ab

  5. Morphological characterization and topographic analysis of multiple photoreceptor types in the retinae of mesopelagic hatchetfishes with tubular eyes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren Michelle Biagioni

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Marine hatchetfishes, Argyropelecus spp., are one of the 14 genera of mesopelagic teleosts, which possess tubular eyes. The tubular eyes are positioned dorsally on the head and consist of a main retina, which subtends a large dorsal binocular field, and an accessory retina, which subtends the lateral monocular visual field. The topographic distribution of photoreceptors in the retina of Argyropelecus sladeni, A. affinis and A. aculeatus was determined using a random, unbiased and systematic stereological approach, which consistently revealed a region of high density (area centralis in the central region of the main retina (up to a peak of 96,000 receptors per mm2 and a relatively homogeneous density of photoreceptors in the accessory retina (of approximately 20,000 receptors per mm2. The position of the area centralis in the main retina indicates this retinal region subserves greater spatial resolution in the centre of the dorsal binocular visual field. Light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy also revealed the presence of multiple photoreceptor types (two rod-like and one cone-like based on the size and shape of the inner and outer segments and ultrastructural differences in the ellipsoidal region. The presence of multiple photoreceptor types in these tubular-eyed, mesopelagic hatchetfishes may reflect the need for the visual system to function under different lighting conditions during vertical migratory behavior, especially given their unique dorsally-facing eyes.

  6. Monopolar fuel cell stack coupled together without use of top or bottom cover plates or tie rods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayanan, Sekharipuram R. (Inventor); Valdez, Thomas I. (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    A monopolar fuel cell stack comprises a plurality of sealed unit cells coupled together. Each unit cell comprises two outer cathodes adjacent to corresponding membrane electrode assemblies and a center anode plate. An inlet and outlet manifold are coupled to the anode plate and communicate with a channel therein. Fuel flows from the inlet manifold through the channel in contact with the anode plate and flows out through the outlet manifold. The inlet and outlet manifolds are arranged to couple to the inlet and outlet manifolds respectively of an adjacent one of the plurality of unit cells to permit fuel flow in common into all of the inlet manifolds of the plurality of the unit cells when coupled together in a stack and out of all of the outlet manifolds of the plurality of unit cells when coupled together in a stack.

  7. Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gary; E.PICKARD; Patricia; J.SOLLARS

    2010-01-01

    A new mammalian photoreceptor was recently discovered to reside in the ganglion cell layer of the inner retina.These intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells(ipRGCs) express a photopigment,melanopsin,that confers upon them the ability to respond to light in the absence of all rod and cone photoreceptor input.Although relatively few in number,ipRGCs extend their dendrites across large expanses of the retina making them ideally suited to function as irradiance detectors to assess changes in ambient light levels.Phototransduction in ipRGCs appears to be mediated by transient receptor potential channels more closely resembling the phototransduction cascade of invertebrate rather than vertebrate photoreceptors.ipRGCs convey irradiance information centrally via the optic nerve to influence several functions.ipRGCs are the primary retinal input to the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus(SCN),a circadian oscillator and biological clock,and this input entrains the SCN to the day/night cycle.ipRGCs contribute irradiance signals that regulate pupil size and they also provide signals that interface with the autonomic nervous system to regulate rhythmic gene activity in major organs of the body.ipRGCs also provide excitatory drive to dopaminergic amacrine cells in the retina,providing a novel basis for the restructuring of retinal circuits by light.Here we review the ground-breaking discoveries,current progress and directions for future investigation.

  8. 棒束燃料组件特征栅元CFD方法研究%CFD Method Research on Characteristic Cells in Rod Bundle Fuel Assembly

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈杰; 陈炳德; 张虹

    2011-01-01

    Two characteristic cells are in AFA-3G fuel assembly, that is typical cell and control rod guide cell. And there are some rules on the arrangement of mixing vanes. For the two characteristic cells, mixing capability is evaluated axially from the point of the first and second kind of sub-channel with CFD method.Mass mixing and heat mixing are interaction but different with each other. Although the mass mixing in the first kind of sub-channel is stronger, the thermal capability of the two is to some tune from the point of heat transfer. In the experiment research on thermal-hydraulic performance of AFA-3G fuel assembly, the arrangements of mixing vanes should refer to the two spacer grids of characteristic cells.%AFA-3G燃料组件中存在典型栅元和控制棒导向管栅元两种特征栅元,定位格架搅混翼的排列也具有一定的规律性.本文采用计算流体力学(CFD)方法,分别针对两种特征栅元,从第一类子通道和第二类子通道的角度,沿程评价其交混性能.质量交混与热交混紧密联系又相互区别,第一类子通道质量交换较强,但从传热角度,二者性能相当.AFA-3G燃料组件热工水力性能的实验研究中,格架搅混翼的排列方式应分别参照两种特征栅元格架.

  9. The Par-PrkC polarity complex is required for cilia growth in zebrafish photoreceptors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan L Krock

    Full Text Available Specification and development of the apical membrane in epithelial cells requires the function of polarity proteins, including Pard3 and an atypical protein kinase C (PrkC. Many epithelial cells possess microtubule-based organelles, known as cilia, that project from their apical surface and the membrane surrounding the cilium is contiguous with the apical cell membrane. Although cilia formation in cultured cells required Pard3, the in vivo requirement for Pard3 in cilia development remains unknown. The vertebrate photoreceptor outer segment represents a highly specialized cilia structure in which to identify factors necessary for apical and ciliary membrane formation. Pard3 and PrkC localized to distinct domains within vertebrate photoreceptors. Using partial morpholino knockdown, photo-morpholinos, and pharmacological approaches, the function of Pard3 and PrkC were found to be required for the formation of both the apical and ciliary membrane of vertebrate photoreceptors. Inhibition of Pard3 or PrkC activity significantly reduced the size of photoreceptor outer segments and resulted in mislocalization of rhodopsin. Suppression of Pard3 or PrkC also led to a reduction in cilia size and cilia number in Kupffer's Vesicle, which resulted in left-right asymmetry defects. Thus, the Par-PrkC complex functions in cilia formation in vivo and this likely reflects a general role in specifying non-ciliary and ciliary compartments of the apical domain.

  10. RGD-conjugated rod-like viral nanoparticles on 2D scaffold improved bone differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qian; Pongkwan, Sitasuwan; Lee, L.; Li, Kai; Nguyen, Huong

    2014-05-01

    Viral nanoparticles have uniform and well-defined nano-structures and can be produced in large quantities. Several plant viral nanoparticles have been tested in biomedical applications due to the lack of mammalian cell infectivity. We are particularly interested in using Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), which has been demonstrated to enhance bone tissue regeneration, as a tuneable nanoscale building block for biomaterials development. Unmodified TMV particles have been shown to accelerate osteogenic differentiation of adult stem cells by synergistically upregulating BMP2 and IBSP expression with dexamethasone. However, the lack of affinity to mammalian cell surface resulted in low initial cell adhesion. In this study, to increase cell binding capacity of TMV based material the chemical functionalization of TMV with arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) peptide was explored. An azide-derivatized RGD peptide was “clicked” to tyrosine residues on TMV outer surface via an efficient copper(I) catalysed azide-alkyne cycloaddition reaction. The ligand spacing is calculated to be 2-4 nm, which could offer a polyvalent ligand clustering effect for enhanced cell receptor signalling, further promoting the proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells.

  11. RGD-conjugated rod-like viral nanoparticles on 2D scaffold improved bone differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian eWang

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Viral nanoparticles have uniform and well-defined nano-structures and can be produced in large quantities. Several plant viral nanoparticles have been tested in biomedical applications due to the lack of mammalian cell infectivity. We are particularly interested in using Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV, which has been demonstrated to enhance bone tissue regeneration, as a tuneable nanoscale building block for biomaterials development. Unmodified TMV particles have been shown to accelerate osteogenic differentiation of adult stem cells by synergistically upregulating BMP2 and IBSP expression with dexamethasone. However, the lack of affinity to mammalian cell surface resulted in low initial cell adhesion. In this study, to increase cell binding capacity of TMV based material the chemical functionalization of TMV with arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD peptide was explored. An azide-derivatized RGD peptide was clicked to tyrosine residues on TMV outer surface via an efficient copper(I catalysed azide-alkyne cycloaddition reaction. The ligand spacing is calculated to be 2-4 nm, which could offer a polyvalent ligand clustering effect for enhanced cell receptor signalling, further promoting the proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells.

  12. RGD-conjugated rod-like viral nanoparticles on 2D scaffold improve bone differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sitasuwan, Pongkwan; Lee, L. Andrew; Li, Kai; Nguyen, Huong Giang; Wang, Qian

    2014-01-01

    Viral nanoparticles have uniform and well-defined nano-structures and can be produced in large quantities. Several plant viral nanoparticles have been tested in biomedical applications due to the lack of mammalian cell infectivity. We are particularly interested in using Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), which has been demonstrated to enhance bone tissue regeneration, as a tunable nanoscale building block for biomaterials development. Unmodified TMV particles have been shown to accelerate osteogenic differentiation of adult stem cells by synergistically upregulating bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP2) and integrin-binding bone sialoprotein (IBSP) expression with dexamethasone. However, their lack of affinity to mammalian cell surface resulted in low initial cell adhesion. In this study, to increase cell binding capacity of TMV based material the chemical functionalization of TMV with arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) peptide was explored. An azide-derivatized RGD peptide was “clicked” to tyrosine residues on TMV outer surface via an efficient copper(I) catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition (CuAAC) reaction. The ligand spacing is calculated to be 2–4 nm, which could offer a polyvalent ligand clustering effect for enhanced cell receptor signaling, further promoting the proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs). PMID:24904922

  13. Coexpression of spectrally distinct rhodopsins in Aedes aegypti R7 photoreceptors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaobang Hu

    Full Text Available The retina of the mosquito Aedes aegypti can be divided into four regions based on the non-overlapping expression of a UV sensitive Aaop8 rhodopsin and a long wavelength sensitive Aaop2 type rhodopsin in the R7 photoreceptors. We show here that another rhodopsin, Aaop9, is expressed in all R7 photoreceptors and a subset of R8 photoreceptors. In the dorsal region, Aaop9 is expressed in both the cell body and rhabdomere of R7 and R8 cells. In other retinal regions Aaop9 is expressed only in R7 cells, being localized to the R7 rhabdomere in the central and ventral regions and in both the cell body and rhabdomere within the ventral stripe. Within the dorsal-central transition area ommatidia do not show a strict pairing of R7-R8 cell types. Thus, Aaop9 is coexpressed in the two classes of R7 photoreceptors previously distinguished by the non-overlapping expression of Aaop8 and Aaop2 rhodopsins. Electroretinogram analysis of transgenic Drosophila shows that Aaop9 is a short wavelength rhodopsin with an optimal response to 400-450 nm light. The coexpressed Aaop2 rhodopsin has dual wavelength sensitivity of 500-550 nm and near 350 nm in the UV region. As predicted by the spectral properties of each rhodopsin, Drosophila photoreceptors expressing both Aaop9 and Aaop2 rhodopsins exhibit a uniform sensitivity across the broad 350-550 nm light range. We propose that rhodopsin coexpression is an adaptation within the R7 cells to improve visual function in the low-light environments in which Ae. aegypti is active.

  14. Gene therapy with a promoter targeting both rods and cones rescues retinal degeneration caused by AIPL1 mutations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, X; Pawlyk, B; Xu, X; Liu, X; Bulgakov, O V; Adamian, M; Sandberg, M A; Khani, S C; Tan, M-H; Smith, A J; Ali, R R; Li, T

    2010-01-01

    Aryl hydrocarbon receptor-interacting protein-like 1 (AIPL1) is required for the biosynthesis of photoreceptor phosphodiesterase (PDE). Gene defects in AIPL1 cause a heterogeneous set of conditions ranging from Leber's congenital amaurosis (LCA), the severest form of early-onset retinal degeneration, to milder forms such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and cone-rod dystrophy. In mice, null and hypomorphic alleles cause retinal degeneration similar to human LCA and RP, respectively. Thus these mouse models represent two ends of the disease spectrum associated with AIPL1 gene defects in humans. We evaluated whether adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated gene replacement therapy in these models could restore PDE biosynthesis in rods and cones and thereby improve photoreceptor survival. We validated the efficacy of human AIPL1 (isoform 1) replacement gene controlled by a promoter derived from the human rhodopsin kinase (RK) gene, which is active in both rods and cones. We found substantial and long-term rescue of the disease phenotype as a result of transgene expression. This is the first gene therapy study in which both rods and cones were targeted successfully with a single photoreceptor-specific promoter. We propose that the vector and construct design used in this study could serve as a prototype for a human clinical trial.

  15. Distinct functions of neuronal synaptobrevin in developing and mature fly photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rister, Jens; Heisenberg, Martin

    2006-10-01

    Neuronal synaptobrevin (n-Syb, alias VAMP2), a synaptic vesicle membrane protein with a central role in neurotransmission, is specifically cleaved by the light chain of tetanus neurotoxin (TNT) that is known to reliably block neuroexocytosis. Here, we study fly photoreceptors transmitting continuous, graded signals to first order interneurons in the lamina, and report consequences of targeted expression of TNT in these cells using the UAS/GAL4 driver/effector system. Expressing the toxin throughout photoreceptor development causes developmental, electrophysiological, and behavioral defects. These can be differentiated by confining toxin expression to shorter developmental periods. Applying a method for controlled temporal and spatial TNT expression, we found that in the early pupa it impaired the development of the retina; in the midpupa, during synapse formation TNT caused a severe hypoplasia of the lamina that persisted into adulthood and left the photoreceptor-interneuron synapses of the lamina without function. Finally, during adulthood TNT neither blocks synaptic transmission in photoreceptors nor depletes the cells of n-Syb. Our study suggests a novel, cell type-specific function of n-Syb in synaptogenesis and it distinguishes between two synapse types: TNT resistant and TNT sensitive ones. These results need to be taken into account if TNT is used for neural circuit analysis.

  16. Melanopsin-expressing amphioxus photoreceptors transduce light via a phospholipase C signaling cascade.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Manuel Angueyra

    Full Text Available Melanopsin, the receptor molecule that underlies light sensitivity in mammalian 'circadian' receptors, is homologous to invertebrate rhodopsins and has been proposed to operate via a similar signaling pathway. Its downstream effectors, however, remain elusive. Melanopsin also expresses in two distinct light-sensitive cell types in the neural tube of amphioxus. This organism is the most basal extant chordate and can help outline the evolutionary history of different photoreceptor lineages and their transduction mechanisms; moreover, isolated amphioxus photoreceptors offer unique advantages, because they are unambiguously identifiable and amenable to single-cell physiological assays. In the present study whole-cell patch clamp recording, pharmacological manipulations, and immunodetection were utilized to investigate light transduction in amphioxus photoreceptors. A G(q was identified and selectively localized to the photosensitive microvillar membrane, while the pivotal role of phospholipase C was established pharmacologically. The photocurrent was profoundly depressed by IP₃ receptor antagonists, highlighting the importance of IP₃ receptors in light signaling. By contrast, surrogates of diacylglycerol (DAG, as well as poly-unsaturated fatty acids failed to activate a membrane conductance or to alter the light response. The results strengthen the notion that calcium released from the ER via IP₃-sensitive channels may fulfill a key role in conveying--directly or indirectly--the melanopsin-initiated light signal to the photoconductance; moreover, they challenge the dogma that microvillar photoreceptors and phoshoinositide-based light transduction are a prerogative of invertebrate eyes.

  17. A neuroanatomical and physiological study of the non-image forming visual system of the cone-rod homeobox gene (Crx) knock out mouse

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rovsing, Louise; Rath, Martin F; Lund-Andersen, Casper

    2010-01-01

    The anatomy and physiology of the non-image forming visual system was investigated in a visually blind cone-rod homeobox gene (Crx) knock-out mouse (Crx(-)(/)(-)), which lacks the outer segments of the photoreceptors. We show that the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) in the Crx(-/-) mouse exhibit...

  18. Otx2 gene deletion in adult mouse retina induces rapid RPE dystrophy and slow photoreceptor degeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francis Béby

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Many developmental genes are still active in specific tissues after development is completed. This is the case for the homeobox gene Otx2, an essential actor of forebrain and head development. In adult mouse, Otx2 is strongly expressed in the retina. Mutations of this gene in humans have been linked to severe ocular malformation and retinal diseases. It is, therefore, important to explore its post-developmental functions. In the mature retina, Otx2 is expressed in three cell types: bipolar and photoreceptor cells that belong to the neural retina and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE, a neighbour structure that forms a tightly interdependent functional unit together with photoreceptor cells. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Conditional self-knockout was used to address the late functions of Otx2 gene in adult mice. This strategy is based on the combination of a knock-in CreERT2 allele and a floxed allele at the Otx2 locus. Time-controlled injection of tamoxifen activates the recombinase only in Otx2 expressing cells, resulting in selective ablation of the gene in its entire domain of expression. In the adult retina, loss of Otx2 protein causes slow degeneration of photoreceptor cells. By contrast, dramatic changes of RPE activity rapidly occur, which may represent a primary cause of photoreceptor disease. CONCLUSIONS: Our novel mouse model uncovers new Otx2 functions in adult retina. We show that this transcription factor is necessary for long-term maintenance of photoreceptors, likely through the control of specific activities of the RPE.

  19. Morphoelastic rods. Part I: A single growing elastic rod

    KAUST Repository

    Moulton, D.E.

    2013-02-01

    A theory for the dynamics and statics of growing elastic rods is presented. First, a single growing rod is considered and the formalism of three-dimensional multiplicative decomposition of morphoelasticity is used to describe the bulk growth of Kirchhoff elastic rods. Possible constitutive laws for growth are discussed and analysed. Second, a rod constrained or glued to a rigid substrate is considered, with the mismatch between the attachment site and the growing rod inducing stress. This stress can eventually lead to instability, bifurcation, and buckling. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Learning with Rods: One Account.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherry, Donald Esha

    This paper discusses one English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher's attempts to use cuisenaire rods as a language learning tool. Cuisenaire rods (sometimes called algebricks) vary in size from 1 x 1 x 10 centimeter sticks to 1 x 1 x 1 centimeter cubes, with each of the 10 sizes a different color. Although such rods have been used to teach…

  1. A genetically encoded reporter for real-time imaging of cofilin-actin rods in living neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianjie Mi

    Full Text Available Filament bundles (rods of cofilin and actin (1:1 form in neurites of stressed neurons where they inhibit synaptic function. Live-cell imaging of rod formation is hampered by the fact that overexpression of a chimera of wild type cofilin with a fluorescent protein causes formation of spontaneous and persistent rods, which is exacerbated by the photostress of imaging. The study of rod induction in living cells calls for a rod reporter that does not cause spontaneous rods. From a study in which single cofilin surface residues were mutated, we identified a mutant, cofilinR21Q, which when fused with monomeric Red Fluorescent Protein (mRFP and expressed several fold above endogenous cofilin, does not induce spontaneous rods even during the photostress of imaging. CofilinR21Q-mRFP only incorporates into rods when they form from endogenous proteins in stressed cells. In neurons, cofilinR21Q-mRFP reports on rods formed from endogenous cofilin and induced by all modes tested thus far. Rods have a half-life of 30-60 min upon removal of the inducer. Vesicle transport in neurites is arrested upon treatments that form rods and recovers as rods disappear. CofilinR21Q-mRFP is a genetically encoded rod reporter that is useful in live cell imaging studies of induced rod formation, including rod dynamics, and kinetics of rod elimination.

  2. Gene expression changes within Müller glial cells in retinitis pigmentosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roesch, Karin; Stadler, Michael B; Cepko, Constance L

    2012-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a progressive retinal degeneration in which the retina loses nearly all of its photoreceptor cells and undergoes major structural changes. Little is known regarding the role the resident glia, the Müller glia, play in the progression of the disease. In this article, we define gene expression changes in Müller glial cells (MGCs) from two different mouse models of RP, the retinal degeneration 1 (rd1) and rhodopsin knockout (Rhod-ko) models. The RNA repertoire of single MGCs was comprehensively profiled, and a comparison was made between MGCs from wild-type (WT) and mutant retinas. Two time points were chosen for analysis, one at the peak of rod photoreceptor death and one during the period of cone photoreceptor death. Retinas were dissociated, and single MGCs were chosen under a dissecting microscope using a micropipette. Single cell cDNAs were generated and genome-wide profiles were obtained by hybridization to Affymetrix arrays. A comparison was made among all samples to discover the changes in gene expression during the periods of rod and cone photoreceptor death. MGCs respond to retinal degeneration by undergoing gliosis, a process marked by the upregulation of glial fibrillary acidic protein (Gfap). Many additional transcripts were found to change. These can be placed into functional clusters, such as retinal remodeling, stress response, and immune-related response. A high degree of heterogeneity among the individual cells was observed, possibly due to their different spatial proximities to dying cells and/or inherent heterogeneity among MGCs.

  3. N-methyl-N-nitrosourea-induced neuronal cell death in a large animal model of retinal degeneration in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Linnéa; Arnér, Karin; Ghosh, Fredrik

    2016-07-01

    N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU) has been reported to induce photoreceptor-specific degeneration with minimal inner retinal impact in small animals in vivo. Pending its use within a retinal transplantation paradigm, we here explore the effects of MNU on outer and inner retinal neurons and glia in an in vitro large animal model of retinal degeneration. The previously described degenerative culture explant model of adult porcine retina was used and compared with explants receiving 10 or 100 μg/ml MNU (MNU10 and MNU100) supplementation. All explants were kept for 5 days in vitro, and examined for morphology as well as for glial and neuronal immunohistochemical markers. Rhodopsin-labeled photoreceptors were present in all explants. The number of cone photoreceptors (transducin), rod bipolar cells (PKC) and horizontal cells (calbindin) was significantly lower in MNU treated explants (p cell proteins was almost extinguished. We here show that MNU causes degeneration of outer and inner retinal neurons and glia in the adult porcine retina in vitro. MNU10 explants display attenuation of gliosis, despite decreased neuronal survival compared with untreated controls. Our results have impact on the use of MNU as a large animal photoreceptor degeneration model, on tissue engineering related to retinal transplantation, and on our understanding of gliosis related neuronal degenerative cell death. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Insect photoreceptor adaptations to night vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honkanen, Anna; Immonen, Esa-Ville; Salmela, Iikka; Heimonen, Kyösti; Weckström, Matti

    2017-04-05

    Night vision is ultimately about extracting information from a noisy visual input. Several species of nocturnal insects exhibit complex visually guided behaviour in conditions where most animals are practically blind. The compound eyes of nocturnal insects produce strong responses to single photons and process them into meaningful neural signals, which are amplified by specialized neuroanatomical structures. While a lot is known about the light responses and the anatomical structures that promote pooling of responses to increase sensitivity, there is still a dearth of knowledge on the physiology of night vision. Retinal photoreceptors form the first bottleneck for the transfer of visual information. In this review, we cover the basics of what is known about physiological adaptations of insect photoreceptors for low-light vision. We will also discuss major enigmas of some of the functional properties of nocturnal photoreceptors, and describe recent advances in methodologies that may help to solve them and broaden the field of insect vision research to new model animals.This article is part of the themed issue 'Vision in dim light'.

  5. Three-dimensional architecture of murine rod outer segments determined by cryoelectron tomography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nickell, Stephan; Park, Paul S-H; Baumeister, Wolfgang; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2007-06-01

    The rod outer segment (ROS) of photoreceptor cells houses all components necessary for phototransduction, a set of biochemical reactions that amplify and propagate a light signal. Theoretical approaches to quantify this process require precise information about the physical boundaries of the ROS. Dimensions of internal structures within the ROS of mammalian species have yet to be determined with the precision required for quantitative considerations. Cryoelectron tomography was utilized to obtain reliable three-dimensional morphological information about this important structure from murine retina. Vitrification of samples permitted imaging of the ROS in a minimally perturbed manner and the preservation of substructures. Tomograms revealed the characteristic highly organized arrangement of disc membranes stacked on top of one another with a surrounding plasma membrane. Distances among the various membrane components of the ROS were measured to define the space available for phototransduction to occur. Reconstruction of segments of the ROS from single-axis tilt series images provided a glimpse into the three-dimensional architecture of this highly differentiated neuron. The reconstructions revealed spacers that likely maintain the proper distance between adjacent discs and between discs and the plasma membrane. Spacers were found distributed throughout the discs, including regions that are distant from the rim region of discs.

  6. Safety rod latch inspection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leader, D.R.

    1992-02-01

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

  7. Safety rod latch inspection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leader, D.R.

    1992-02-01

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

  8. PROPERTIES OF PROLIFERATION AND DIFFERENTIATION OF NEONATAL RAT RETINAL PROGENITOR CELLS IN VITRO

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Kang Qianyan; Liu Yong; Zhao Jianjun; Qiu Fen; Chen Xinlin; Tian Yumei; Hu Ming

    2006-01-01

    Objective To investigate the properties of proliferation and differentiation of neonatal rat retinal progenitor cells (RPCs) in vitro. Methods RPCs were isolated from neonatal SD rats neural retina and cultured in DMEM/F12+N2 with EGF and bFGF (suspension medium )or 10%FBS without EGF and bFGF (differentiation medium). The cells grew as suspended spheres or adherent monolayers, depending on different culture conditions. The neural stem cells or retinal progenitors, neurons, astrocytes, retinal ganglion cells, rod photoreceptors and the proliferating cells were evaluated with immunofluorescence analysis by Nestin or Pax6, Map2, GFAP, Thy-1, Rhodopsin and BrdU antibodies respectively. Results RPCs could propagate and differentiate in suspension or differentiation medium and express the markers of Nestin (92.86%) or Pax6 (86.75%), Map2 (38.54%), GFAP (20.93%), Thy-1 (27.66%) and Rhodopsin(13.33%)in suspension medium; however, Nestin (60.27%), Pax6 (52%), Map2 (34.94%), GFAP (38.17%), Thy-1(30.84%) and Rhodopsin (34.67%) in differentiation medium. 96.4% of the population in the neurospheres was BrdU-positive cells. The cells could spontaneously adherent forming some subspheres and retinal specific cell types. Conclusion Neonatal rat RPCs possess the high degree of proliferation and can differentiate into neurons, astrocytes, retinal ganglion cells and rod photoreceptors in vitro. There are different proportions for RPCs to differentiate into specific cell types.

  9. OBSERVATION OF THE DISTRIBUTION OF γ-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID IN THE VISUAL CORTEX OF THE RECONSTRUCTED RCS RAT′S RETINA BY TRANSPLANTING PURE PHOTORECEPTOR CELLS%纯视细胞移植术后RCS鼠视皮质内γ-氨基丁酸的分布

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    潘峰; 王薇; 沈丽; 杨磊

    2001-01-01

    目的 通过成功纯视细胞移植,观察RCS鼠视皮质内抑制性神经递质γ-氨基丁酸(GABA)的分布和变化。 方法 取同龄Wistar/皇家外科学院(RoyalCollegeofSurgeon,RCS)鼠为供/受体,准分子激光切削法制备视细胞层,外路途径移入RCS鼠的视网膜下腔,术后2周取RCS鼠手术组眼、手术对照组眼、RCS对照组眼及其视皮质分别做冰冻切片,免疫组织化学染色法染色,普通光学显微镜下观察。 结果 视细胞移植术后2周,移植视细胞存活,外丛状层重建,与手术对照眼、RCS对照眼相比,重建视网膜受体RCS鼠对侧视皮质内GABA免疫反应神经元数量较多,而同侧视皮质内无GABA免疫反应神经元。 结论 成功纯视细胞移植可以重建RCS鼠的视觉传导通路,移植的纯视细胞使RCS鼠视皮质内GABA免疫反应的分布发生变化。%Objective We observe the γ-aminobutyric acid(GABA)′s var iationin the visual cortex of Royal College of Surgeons Rat(RCS rat)′s retina following the photoreceptor cell transplantation. Method The healthy Wistar rats′photoreceptor cells were grafted into the sub-retinal space of the left eye of the RCS rat by outer-pa th way.Two weeks later,host animals were sacrificed.Both sides of visual cortex were processed for light microscopic analysis.So did the 74 days Wistar rats an d 74 days RCS rats.Then immunocytochemistry was used to determine the localizati on of the amino acid neurotransmitters(γ-aminobutyrate,GABA).Results After two weeks of transplantation,the transplanted photoreceptor cells survived.On the opposite side of the visula cor tex in the grafted RCS rats,GABA-like immunoreactivity was intensely stained.Bu t the same side of the visual cortex in the grafted RCS rats,GABA-like immunore activity could not be observed.Conclusion These results suggest that we can rebuild the visual pat hway by transplanting the photoreceptor cells.In the visual cortex of the grafted

  10. Patterns of rod proliferation in deep-sea fish retinae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fröhlich, E; Negishi, K; Wagner, H J

    1995-07-01

    In a sample of 37 species of deep-sea fish species from the sea floor of the Porcupine Seabight and the Gobal spur (North Atlantic) we investigated the overall structure of the retina with special respect for the organization of rods, their length and their arrangement in multiple banks. Using an immunocytochemical marker for cell proliferation (PCNA) we studied the mechanisms of rod proliferation, and, by means of serial section reconstruction followed their integration into the existing population of rods. Furthermore, in three different species we have observed growth related changes in retinal thickness, rod density and proliferation activity. We found evidence for two different principles for the organization of rods in these deep-sea fish retinae. In the first group of species represented by Nematonurus armatus and Coryphaenoides guentheri we found rods to be rather short (20-30 microns) and arranged in three and more banks. In these species rod proliferation occurred in a single band of cells immediately vitread of the external limiting membrane, thus showing a high degree of spatial and temporal order. In these species, young rods are inserted just sclerad of the external limiting membrane and the older outer segments pushed away from the incoming light towards the back of the eye. This may be linked to a progressive loss of function of the older rods and might represent an alternative mechanism to the disk shedding in other vertebrates. In the second population (e.g. Conocara macroptera, Alepocephalus agassizii) we observed considerably longer rod outer segments (60-80 microns) forming no more than two layers. These retinae had rod precursors arranged in disseminated clusters throughout the outer nuclear layer indicating the lack of clear spatio-temporal order in mitotic activity along with a more statistical pattern of integration of the newly formed outer segments. In our sample of species both populations were of about equal size suggesting that the two

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    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 n...

  12. 多孔钽棒表面犬骨髓间充质干细胞的附着与增殖%Attachment and proliferation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells cultured on porous tantalum rod

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    赵振华; 赵德伟; 傅维民; 王本杰; 尉晓蔚; 王威; 刘保一

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND:Porous tantalum rods, possessing high porosity and highly similar elastic modulus to the trabecular bone, not only can provide effective mechanical support for the femoral head, but also can enhance revascularization in the areas of necrosis, reduce stress shielding, and provide guarantee for bone ingrowth in necrotic area. OBJECTIVE:To investigate the attachment and proliferation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells on the surface of porous tantalum rod. METHODS:The purified bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells which were separated from canines were seeded on the surface of porous tantalum rod by the celldensity of 1.5×109/L. cellattachment and proliferation was observed under phase microscope and scanning electron microscope at 5, 10 and 15 days under co-cultured condition. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION:(1) Inverted microscope:Within 1-5 days after co-culture, the cells began to proliferate, and less cells were found near the tantalum rod, but more cells far from the rod. At 6-10 days after co-culture, the cells increased significantly and gradual y migrated to the rod, and even some cells attached to the edges of the rod. After 14 days, the cells were interconnected to form a film, packing the surrounding and dents of the tantalum rod. cells were visible to agglomerate and cellcalcification occurred. (2) Scanning electron microscope:At 5 days after co-culture, no celladhesion appeared on the the tantalum rod surface. At 10 days after co-culture, the cells scattered on the surface of tantalum rod, but there was no interconnection between them. After 15 days, cells were polygon shaped and connected into pieces. It could be seen that the cells secreted large amounts of col agen fibers, and the cells that were fusiform and polygon shaped were surrounded by a great amount of extracellular matrice. Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells appear to have good adhesion and proliferation capability on the surface of tantalum rod.%背景:具有高孔隙率及与骨小梁

  13. AA/12-lipoxygenase signaling contributes to inhibitory learning in Hermissenda Type B photoreceptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tony L Walker

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Conditioned inhibition (CI is a major category of associative learning that occurs when an organism learns that one stimulus predicts the absence of another. In addition to being important in its own right, CI is interesting because its occurrence implies that the organism has formed an association between stimuli that are non-coincident. In contrast to other categories of associative learning that are dependent upon temporal contiguity (pairings of stimuli, the neurobiology of CI is virtually unexplored. We have previously described a simple form of CI learning in Hermissenda, whereby animals’ phototactic behavior is increased by repeated exposures to explicitly unpaired (EU presentations of light and rotation. EU conditioning also produces characteristic reductions in the excitability and light response, and increases several somatic K+ currents in Type B photoreceptors. Type B photoreceptors are a major site of plasticity for classical conditioning in Hermissenda. Because arachidonic acid (AA and/or its metabolites open diverse K+ channels in many cell types, we examined the potential contribution of AA to CI. Our results indicate that AA contributes to one of the major effects of EU-conditioning on Type B photoreceptors: decreases in light-evoked spike activity. We find that AA increases the transient (IA somatic K+ current in Type B photoreceptors, further mimicking CI training. In addition, our results indicate that metabolism of AA by a 12-lipoxygenase enzyme is critical for these effects of AA, and further that 12-lipoxygenase metabolites are apparently generated during CI training.

  14. Gene replacement therapy rescues photoreceptor degeneration in a murine model of Leber congenital amaurosis lacking RPGRIP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pawlyk, Basil S; Smith, Alexander J; Buch, Prateek K; Adamian, Michael; Hong, Dong-Hyun; Sandberg, Michael A; Ali, Robin R; Li, Tiansen

    2005-09-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator (RPGR) is a photoreceptor protein anchored in the connecting cilia by an RPGR-interacting protein (RPGRIP). Loss of RPGRIP causes Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a severe form of photoreceptor degeneration. The current study was an investigation of whether somatic gene replacement could rescue degenerating photoreceptors in a murine model of LCA due to a defect in RPGRIP. An RPGRIP expression cassette, driven by a mouse opsin promoter, was packaged into recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV). The AAV vector was delivered into the right eyes of RPGRIP(-/-) mice by a single subretinal injection into the superior hemisphere. The left eyes received a saline injection as a control. Full-field electroretinograms (ERGs) were recorded from both eyes at 2, 3, 4, and 5 months after injection. After the final follow-up, retinas were analyzed by immunostaining or by light and electron microscopy. Delivery of the AAV vector led to RPGRIP expression and restoration of normal RPGR localization at the connecting cilia. Photoreceptor preservation was evident by a thicker cell layer and well-developed outer segments in the treated eyes. Rescue was more pronounced in the superior hemisphere coincident with the site of delivery. Functional preservation was demonstrated by ERG. AAV-mediated RPGRIP gene replacement preserves photoreceptor structure and function in a mouse model of LCA, despite ongoing cell loss at the time of intervention. These results indicate that gene replacement therapy may be effective in patients with LCA due to a defect in RPGRIP and suggest that further preclinical development of gene therapy for this disorder is warranted.

  15. Synthesis and Optical Properties of Lead-Free Cesium Tin Halide Perovskite Quantum Rods with High-Performance Solar Cell Application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Lin-Jer; Lee, Chia-Rong; Chuang, Yu-Ju; Wu, Zhao-Han; Chen, Chienyi

    2016-12-15

    Herein, the fabrication of a lead-free cesium tin halide perovskite produced via a simple solvothermal process is reported for the first time. The resulting CsSnX3 (X = Cl, Br, and I) quantum rods show composition-tunable photoluminescence (PL) emissions over the entire visible spectral window (from 625 to 709 nm), as well as significant tunability of the optical properties. In this study, we demonstrate that through hybrid materials (CsSnX3) with different halides, the system can be tunable in terms of PL. By replacing the halide of the CsSnX3 quantum rods, a power conversion efficiency of 12.96% under AM 1.5 G has been achieved. This lead-free quantum rod replacement has demonstrated to be an effective method to create an absorber layer that increases light harvesting and charge collection for photovoltaic applications in its perovskite phase.

  16. R7 Photoreceptor Specification in the Developing Drosophila Eye: The Role of the Transcription Factor Deadpan.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yannis Emmanuel Mavromatakis

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available As cells proceed along their developmental pathways they make a series of sequential cell fate decisions. Each of those decisions needs to be made in a robust manner so there is no ambiguity in the state of the cell as it proceeds to the next stage. Here we examine the decision made by the Drosophila R7 precursor cell to become a photoreceptor and ask how the robustness of that decision is achieved. The transcription factor Tramtrack (Ttk inhibits photoreceptor assignment, and previous studies found that the RTK-induced degradation of Ttk was critically required for R7 specification. Here we find that the transcription factor Deadpan (Dpn is also required; it is needed to silence ttk transcription, and only when Ttk protein degradation and transcriptional silencing occur together is the photoreceptor fate robustly achieved. Dpn expression needs to be tightly restricted to R7 precursors, and we describe the role played by Ttk in repressing dpn transcription. Thus, Dpn and Ttk act as mutually repressive transcription factors, with Dpn acting to ensure that Ttk is effectively removed from R7, and Ttk acting to prevent Dpn expression in other cells. Furthermore, we find that N activity is required to promote dpn transcription, and only in R7 precursors does the removal of Ttk coincide with high N activity, and only in this cell does Dpn expression result.

  17. Semiconductor Quantum Rods as Single Molecule FluorescentBiological Labels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fu, Aihua; Gu, Weiwei; Boussert, Benjamine; Koski, Kristie; Gerion, Daniele; Manna, Liberato; Le Gros, Mark; Larabell, Carolyn; Alivisatos, A. Paul

    2006-05-29

    In recent years, semiconductor quantum dots have beenapplied with great advantage in a wide range of biological imagingapplications. The continuing developments in the synthesis of nanoscalematerials and specifically in the area of colloidal semiconductornanocrystals have created an opportunity to generate a next generation ofbiological labels with complementary or in some cases enhanced propertiescompared to colloidal quantum dots. In this paper, we report thedevelopment of rod shaped semiconductor nanocrystals (quantum rods) asnew fluorescent biological labels. We have engineered biocompatiblequantum rods by surface silanization and have applied them fornon-specific cell tracking as well as specific cellular targeting. Theproperties of quantum rods as demonstrated here are enhanced sensitivityand greater resistance for degradation as compared to quantum dots.Quantum rods have many potential applications as biological labels insituations where their properties offer advantages over quantumdots.

  18. Preservation of cone photoreceptors after a rapid yet transient degeneration and remodeling in cone-only Nrl−/− mouse retina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roger, Jerome E; Ranganath, Keerthi; Zhao, Lian; Cojocaru, Radu I; Brooks, Matthew; Gotoh, Norimoto; Veleri, Shobi; Hiriyanna, Avinash; Rachel, Rivka A; Campos, Maria Mercedes; Fariss, Robert N; Wong, Wai T; Swaroop, Anand

    2012-01-01

    Cone photoreceptors are the primary initiator of visual transduction in the human retina. Dysfunction or death of rod photoreceptors precedes cone loss in many retinal and macular degenerative diseases, suggesting a rod-dependent trophic support for cone survival. Rod differentiation and homeostasis are dependent on the basic motif leucine zipper transcription factor NRL. The loss of Nrl (Nrl−/−) in mice results in a retina with predominantly S-opsin containing cones that exhibit molecular and functional characteristics of WT cones. Here we report that Nrl−/− retina undergoes a rapid but transient period of degeneration in early adulthood, with cone apoptosis, retinal detachment, alterations in retinal vessel structure, and activation and translocation of retinal microglia. However, cone degeneration stabilizes by four months of age, resulting in a thinner but intact outer nuclear layer with residual cones expressing S- and M-opsins and a preserved photopic ERG. At this stage, microglia translocate back to the inner retina and reacquire a quiescent morphology. Gene profiling analysis during the period of transient degeneration reveals misregulation of genes related to stress response and inflammation, implying their involvement in cone death. The Nrl−/− mouse illustrates the long-term viability of cones in the absence of rods and RPE defects in a rodless retina. We propose that Nrl−/− retina may serve as a model for elucidating mechanisms of cone homeostasis and degeneration that would be relevant to understanding diseases of the cone-dominant human macula. PMID:22238088

  19. Active Brownian rods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peruani, Fernando

    2016-11-01

    Bacteria, chemically-driven rods, and motility assays are examples of active (i.e. self-propelled) Brownian rods (ABR). The physics of ABR, despite their ubiquity in experimental systems, remains still poorly understood. Here, we review the large-scale properties of collections of ABR moving in a dissipative medium. We address the problem by presenting three different models, of decreasing complexity, which we refer to as model I, II, and III, respectively. Comparing model I, II, and III, we disentangle the role of activity and interactions. In particular, we learn that in two dimensions by ignoring steric or volume exclusion effects, large-scale nematic order seems to be possible, while steric interactions prevent the formation of orientational order at large scales. The macroscopic behavior of ABR results from the interplay between active stresses and local alignment. ABR exhibit, depending on where we locate ourselves in parameter space, a zoology of macroscopic patterns that ranges from polar and nematic bands to dynamic aggregates.

  20. Method of targeted delivery of laser beam to isolated retinal rods by fiber optics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sim, Nigel; Bessarab, Dmitri; Jones, C Michael; Krivitsky, Leonid

    2011-11-01

    A method of controllable light delivery to retinal rod cells using an optical fiber is described. Photo-induced current of the living rod cells was measured with the suction electrode technique. The approach was tested with measurements relating the spatial distribution of the light intensity to photo-induced current. In addition, the ion current responses of rod cells to polarized light at two different orientation geometries of the cells were studied.

  1. Method of targeted delivery of laser beam to isolated retinal rods by fiber optics

    CERN Document Server

    Sim, Nigel; Jones, C Michael; Krivitsky, Leonid

    2013-01-01

    A method of controllable light delivery to retinal rod cells using an optical fiber is described. Photo-induced current of the living rod cells was measured with the suction electrode technique. The approach was tested with measurements relating the spatial distribution of the light intensity to photo-induced current. In addition, the ion current responses of rod cells to polarized light at two different orientation geometries of the cells were studied.

  2. Mutant carbonic anhydrase 4 impairs pH regulation and causes retinal photoreceptor degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Zhenglin; Alvarez, Bernardo V; Chakarova, Christina; Jiang, Li; Karan, Goutam; Frederick, Jeanne M; Zhao, Yu; Sauvé, Yves; Li, Xi; Zrenner, Eberhart; Wissinger, Bernd; Hollander, Anneke I Den; Katz, Bradley; Baehr, Wolfgang; Cremers, Frans P; Casey, Joseph R; Bhattacharya, Shomi S; Zhang, Kang

    2005-01-15

    Retina and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) belong to the metabolically most active tissues in the human body. Efficient removal of acid load from retina and RPE is a critical function mediated by the choriocapillaris. However, the mechanism by which pH homeostasis is maintained is largely unknown. Here, we show that a functional complex of carbonic anhydrase 4 (CA4) and Na+/bicarbonate co-transporter 1 (NBC1) is specifically expressed in the choriocapillaris and that missense mutations in CA4 linked to autosomal dominant rod-cone dystrophy disrupt NBC1-mediated HCO3- transport. Our results identify a novel pathogenic pathway in which a defect in a functional complex involved in maintaining pH balances, but not expressed in retina or RPE, leads to photoreceptor degeneration. The importance of a functional CA4 for survival of photoreceptors implies that CA inhibitors, which are widely used as medications, particularly in the treatment of glaucoma, may have long-term adverse effects on vision.

  3. Expression changes of Rhodopsin and recoverin in MNU-induced photoreceptor degeneration in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Jin

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available AIM: To investigate the time-effect relationship between the expression of rhodopsin and recoverin and photoreceptor damage induced by N-nethl-N-nitrosourea(MNU. METHODS: Thirty-six 7-week old Sprague-Dawley(SDrats were intraperitoneally injected with MNU(60mg/kgand were put to death by dislocation of cervical vertebra 6, 12, 24h; 3, 7d after injection(6 per group, respectively. As a control, six rats were injected with phosphate buffer saline(PBS5mL/kg and sacrificed on d3 after injection. The degree of photoreceptor apoptosis was detected by HE staining, terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end-labeling(TUNELand transmission electron microscope(TEMin the right eyes. The mRNA expressions of rhodopsin and recoverin were detected different time after injection by Western blot and immunohistochemical method in the left eyes. RESULTS: The dissolution of photoreceptor nucleus and apoptosis body were first perceived at 12h by TEM; most of cells at outer nuclear layer were presented positive reaction. The apoptotic index reached peak(29.7%±2.3%at 24h which was coincided with the observation of TEM. The results of immunohistochemistry displayed that rhodopsin and recoverin were on a declining curve with time extension. Furthermore, the results of Western blot indicated that rhodopsin had dramatic decline at 6h after injection(P0.05, and extremely significant difference comparing to control group after 12h(P0.01; while recoverin dramatic declined at 12h, and extremely significant difference after 24h(P0.01. CONCLUSION: 60mg/kg MNU intraperitoneally injection one-time may specifically induce photoreceptor apoptosis, The mechanism of down-regulation of rhodopsin and recoverin may be related to the selected apoptosis of photoreceptors.

  4. Control of Rod-Rod Interactions in Poly(3-alkylthiophenes)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Victor; Boudouris, Bryan W.; Segalman, Rachel A.

    2010-03-01

    Poly(3-hexylthiophene) is a commonly used semiconducting polymer because of its relatively high charge transport ability, low band gap, and solution processiblity. Strong intermolecular interactions lead to the formation of nanofibers during crystallization, which prevents long-range microstructural ordering. We show rod-rod interactions, parameterized by the Maier-Saupe parameter, can be controlled by rational polythiophene side chain design. Effects of side chain passivation are evidenced by a depressed melting temperature and the presence of a liquid crystalline region. Additionally, the Maier-Saupe parameters are estimated for poly(3-dodecylthiophene) and poly(3-ethylhexylthiophene); the relative magnitudes of each are related to the interchain spacings obtained by x-ray diffraction experiments. The systematic tuning of the rod-rod interactions in polythiophenes allows for manipulation of the ratio of Maier-Saupe to the Flory-Huggins parameter, a crucial value in obtaining long-range order in rod-coil block copolymer morphologies.

  5. Mechanisms underlying stage-1 TRPL channel translocation in Drosophila photoreceptors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minh-Ha Lieu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: TRP channels function as key mediators of sensory transduction and other cellular signaling pathways. In Drosophila, TRP and TRPL are the light-activated channels in photoreceptors. While TRP is statically localized in the signaling compartment of the cell (the rhabdomere, TRPL localization is regulated by light. TRPL channels translocate out of the rhabdomere in two distinct stages, returning to the rhabdomere with dark-incubation. Translocation of TRPL channels regulates their availability, and thereby the gain of the signal. Little, however, is known about the mechanisms underlying this trafficking of TRPL channels. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We first examine the involvement of de novo protein synthesis in TRPL translocation. We feed flies cycloheximide, verify inhibition of protein synthesis, and test for TRPL translocation in photoreceptors. We find that protein synthesis is not involved in either stage of TRPL translocation out of the rhabdomere, but that re-localization to the rhabdomere from stage-1, but not stage-2, depends on protein synthesis. We also characterize an ex vivo eye preparation that is amenable to biochemical and genetic manipulation. We use this preparation to examine mechanisms of stage-1 TRPL translocation. We find that stage-1 translocation is: induced with ATP depletion, unaltered with perturbation of the actin cytoskeleton or inhibition of endocytosis, and slowed with increased membrane sterol content. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results indicate that translocation of TRPL out of the rhabdomere is likely due to protein transport, and not degradation/re-synthesis. Re-localization from each stage to the rhabdomere likely involves different strategies. Since TRPL channels can translocate to stage-1 in the absence of ATP, with no major requirement of the cytoskeleton, we suggest that stage-1 translocation involves simple diffusion through the apical membrane, which may be regulated by release of a

  6. Rotenone induces degeneration of photoreceptors and impairs the dopaminergic system in the rat retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esteve-Rudd, Julián; Fernández-Sánchez, Laura; Lax, Pedro; De Juan, Emilio; Martín-Nieto, José; Cuenca, Nicolás

    2011-10-01

    Rotenone is a widely used pesticide and a potent inhibitor of mitochondrial complex I (NADH-quinone reductase) that elicits the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons and thereby the appearance of a parkinsonian syndrome. Here we have addressed the alterations induced by rotenone at the functional, morphological and molecular levels in the retina, including those involving both dopaminergic and non-dopaminergic retinal neurons. Rotenone-treated rats showed abnormalities in equilibrium, postural instability and involuntary movements. In their outer retina we observed a loss of photoreceptors, and a reduced synaptic connectivity between those remaining and their postsynaptic neurons. A dramatic loss of mitochondria was observed in the inner segments, as well as in the axon terminals of photoreceptors. In the inner retina we observed a decrease in the expression of dopaminergic cell molecular markers, including loss of tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactivity, associated with a reduction of the dopaminergic plexus and cell bodies. An increase in immunoreactivity of AII amacrine cells for parvalbumin, a Ca(2+)-scavenging protein, was also detected. These abnormalities were accompanied by a decrease in the amplitude of scotopic and photopic a- and b-waves and an increase in the b-wave implicit time, as well as by a lower amplitude and greater latency in oscillatory potentials. These results indicate that rotenone induces loss of vision by promoting photoreceptor cell death and impairment of the dopaminergic retinal system.

  7. Control of a four-color sensing photoreceptor by a two-color sensing photoreceptor reveals complex light regulation in cyanobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bussell, Adam N; Kehoe, David M

    2013-07-30

    Photoreceptors are biologically important for sensing changes in the color and intensity of ambient light and, for photosynthetic organisms, processing this light information to optimize food production through photosynthesis. Cyanobacteria are an evolutionarily and ecologically important prokaryotic group of oxygenic photosynthesizers that contain cyanobacteriochrome (CBCR) photoreceptors, whose family members sense nearly the entire visible spectrum of light colors. Some cyanobacteria contain 12 to 15 different CBCRs, and many family members contain multiple light-sensing domains. However, the complex interactions that must be occurring within and between these photoreceptors remain unexplored. Here we describe the regulation and photobiology of a unique CBCR called IflA (influenced by far-red light), demonstrating that a second CBCR called RcaE strongly regulates IflA abundance and that IflA uses two distinct photosensory domains to respond to four different light colors: blue, green, red, and far-red. The absorption of red or far-red light by one domain affects the conformation of the other domain, and the rate of relaxation of one of these domains is influenced by the conformation of the other. Deletion of iflA results in delayed growth at low cell density, suggesting that IflA accelerates growth under this condition, apparently by sensing the ratio of red to far-red light in the environment. The types of complex photobiological interactions described here, both between unrelated CBCR family members and within photosensory domains of a single CBCR, may be advantageous for species using these photoreceptors in aquatic environments, where light color ratios are influenced by many biotic and abiotic factors.

  8. Functional photoreceptor loss revealed with adaptive optics: an alternate cause of color blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Joseph; Neitz, Maureen; Hofer, Heidi; Neitz, Jay; Williams, David R

    2004-06-01

    There is enormous variation in the X-linked L/M (long/middle wavelength sensitive) gene array underlying "normal" color vision in humans. This variability has been shown to underlie individual variation in color matching behavior. Recently, red-green color blindness has also been shown to be associated with distinctly different genotypes. This has opened the possibility that there may be important phenotypic differences within classically defined groups of color blind individuals. Here, adaptive optics retinal imaging has revealed a mechanism for producing dichromatic color vision in which the expression of a mutant cone photopigment gene leads to the loss of the entire corresponding class of cone photoreceptor cells. Previously, the theory that common forms of inherited color blindness could be caused by the loss of photoreceptor cells had been discounted. We confirm that remarkably, this loss of one-third of the cones does not impair any aspect of vision other than color.

  9. Cuisenaire Rods Go to College.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chinn, Phyllis; And Others

    1992-01-01

    Presents examples of questions and answers arising from a hands-on and exploratory approach to discrete mathematics using cuisenaire rods. Combinatorial questions about trains formed of cuisenaire rods provide the setting for discovering numerical patterns by experimentation and organizing the results using induction and successive differences.…

  10. CNGB3-achromatopsia clinical trial with CNTF: diminished rod pathway responses with no evidence of improvement in cone function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

    2014-09-09

    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. 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. 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. 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.). Copyright 2014 The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Inc.

  11. The role of carcinine in signaling at the Drosophila photoreceptor synapse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brendan A Gavin

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available The Drosophila melanogaster photoreceptor cell has long served as a model system for researchers focusing on how animal sensory neurons receive information from their surroundings and translate this information into chemical and electrical messages. Electroretinograph (ERG analysis of Drosophila mutants has helped to elucidate some of the genes involved in the visual transduction pathway downstream of the photoreceptor cell, and it is now clear that photoreceptor cell signaling is dependent upon the proper release and recycling of the neurotransmitter histamine. While the neurotransmitter transporters responsible for clearing histamine, and its metabolite carcinine, from the synaptic cleft have remained unknown, a strong candidate for a transporter of either substrate is the uncharacterized inebriated protein. The inebriated gene (ine encodes a putative neurotransmitter transporter that has been localized to photoreceptor cells in Drosophila and mutations in ine result in an abnormal ERG phenotype in Drosophila. Loss-of-function mutations in ebony, a gene required for the synthesis of carcinine in Drosophila, suppress components of the mutant ine ERG phenotype, while loss-of-function mutations in tan, a gene necessary for the hydrolysis of carcinine in Drosophila, have no effect on the ERG phenotype in ine mutants. We also show that by feeding wild-type flies carcinine, we can duplicate components of mutant ine ERGs. Finally, we demonstrate that treatment with H(3 receptor agonists or inverse agonists rescue several components of the mutant ine ERG phenotype. Here, we provide pharmacological and genetic epistatic evidence that ine encodes a carcinine neurotransmitter transporter. We also speculate that the oscillations observed in mutant ine ERG traces are the result of the aberrant activity of a putative H(3 receptor.

  12. The role of carcinine in signaling at the Drosophila photoreceptor synapse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brendan A Gavin

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available The Drosophila melanogaster photoreceptor cell has long served as a model system for researchers focusing on how animal sensory neurons receive information from their surroundings and translate this information into chemical and electrical messages. Electroretinograph (ERG analysis of Drosophila mutants has helped to elucidate some of the genes involved in the visual transduction pathway downstream of the photoreceptor cell, and it is now clear that photoreceptor cell signaling is dependent upon the proper release and recycling of the neurotransmitter histamine. While the neurotransmitter transporters responsible for clearing histamine, and its metabolite carcinine, from the synaptic cleft have remained unknown, a strong candidate for a transporter of either substrate is the uncharacterized inebriated protein. The inebriated gene (ine encodes a putative neurotransmitter transporter that has been localized to photoreceptor cells in Drosophila and mutations in ine result in an abnormal ERG phenotype in Drosophila. Loss-of-function mutations in ebony, a gene required for the synthesis of carcinine in Drosophila, suppress components of the mutant ine ERG phenotype, while loss-of-function mutations in tan, a gene necessary for the hydrolysis of carcinine in Drosophila, have no effect on the ERG phenotype in ine mutants. We also show that by feeding wild-type flies carcinine, we can duplicate components of mutant ine ERGs. Finally, we demonstrate that treatment with H(3 receptor agonists or inverse agonists rescue several components of the mutant ine ERG phenotype. Here, we provide pharmacological and genetic epistatic evidence that ine encodes a carcinine neurotransmitter transporter. We also speculate that the oscillations observed in mutant ine ERG traces are the result of the aberrant activity of a putative H(3 receptor.

  13. Common dynamical features of sensory adaptation in photoreceptors and olfactory sensory neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Giovanna De Palo; Giuseppe Facchetti; Monica Mazzolini; Anna Menini; Vincent Torre; Claudio Altafini

    2013-01-01

    Sensory systems adapt, i.e., they adjust their sensitivity to external stimuli according to the ambient level. In this paper we show that single cell electrophysiological responses of vertebrate olfactory receptors and of photoreceptors to different input protocols exhibit several common features related to adaptation, and that these features can be used to investigate the dynamical structure of the feedback regulation responsible for the adaptation. In particular, we point out that two diffe...

  14. Gamma-ray spectroscopy on irradiated fuel rods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Terremoto, Luis Antonio Albiac [Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares (IPEN/CNEN-SP), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil). Centro de Engenharia Nuclear], e-mail: laaterre@ipen.br

    2009-07-01

    The recording of gamma-ray spectra along an irradiated fuel rod allows the fission products to be qualitatively and quantitatively examined. Among all nondestructive examinations performed on irradiated fuel rods by gamma-ray spectroscopy, the most comprehensive one is the average burnup measurement, which is quantitative. Moreover, burnup measurements by means of gamma-ray spectroscopy are less time-consuming and waste-generating than burnup measurements by radiochemical, destructive methods. This work presents the theoretical foundations and experimental techniques necessary to measure, using nondestructive gamma-ray spectroscopy, the average burnup of irradiated fuel rods in a laboratory equipped with hot cells. (author)

  15. A comparative study on the morphology of P3HT:PCBM solar cells with the addition of Fe3O4 nanoparticles by spin and rod coating methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wenluan; Nguyen, Ngoc A.; Murray, Roy; Xin, Jiyuan; Mackay, Michael E.

    2017-09-01

    Our previous study presented up to 20% power conversion efficiency (PCE) enhancement of poly(3-hexylthiophene):phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (P3HT:PCBM) solar cells under the Fe3O4 nanoparticles (NPs) self-assembly (SA) effect by spin coating. Fe3O4 NPs (about 11 nm hydrodynamic diameter) form a thin layer at the top interface of the light absorbing active layer, which results in the generation of PCBM rich region improving the charge transport (Zhang et al. Sol Energ Mat Sol C 160:126-133, 2017). In order to investigate the feasibility of this Fe3O4 NPs SA effect under large-scale production condition, a smooth rod was implemented to mimic roll-to-roll coating technique and yield active layers having about the same thickness as the spin-coated ones. Small angle neutron scattering and grazing incidence X-ray diffraction were employed finding out similar morphologies of the active layers by these two coating techniques. However, rod-coated solar cell's PCE decreases with the addition of Fe3O4 NPs compared with the one without them. This is because PCBM rich region is not created at the top interface of the active layer due to the absence of Fe3O4 NPs, which is attributed to the weak convective flow and low diffusion rate. Moreover, in the rod-coated solar cells, the presence of Fe3O4 NPs causes decrease in P3HT crystallinity, thus the charge transport and the device performance. Our study confirms the role of spin coating in the Fe3O4 NPs SA effect and enables researchers to explore this finding in other polymer nanocomposite systems.

  16. Ontogeny of the photoreceptors in the embryonic retina of the viviparous guppy, Poecilia reticulata P. (Teleostei). An electron-microscopical study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunz, Y W; Ennis, S; Wise, C

    1983-01-01

    Ultrastructural analyses of retinal development in the guppy embryo show that at midgestation all types of photoreceptors are differentiated in the fundus, and at birth differentiation extends over the whole retina. Formation of discs of outer segments is more rapid in rods than in cones. Double cones differentiate simultaneously with long single cones and are formed by the adhesion of two primordial inner segments; short single cones develop last. Wherever cones are differentiated, they are arranged in an adult-type square mosaic. The rods in the embryo, as opposed to the adult, are likewise regularly arranged within the mosaic unit. These results are at variance with the generally held opinion that adult teleosts which possess duplex retinae have larvae with pure cone retinae, and that rods, double cones and mosaics appear in late larval life or only at metamorphosis. In the double cones of the guppy embryo subsurface cisternae develop along the adjoining primordial inner segments. Additionally, regularly distributed subsurface cisternae are formed in the regions of intimate contact of long single cones with double cones and rods. We suggest that the early development of rods and double cones, and a square-mosaic with regular distribution of rods and subsurface cisternae, provide the newly born with a fully functional optical apparatus, especially suited to perception of movements. This is necessary for its survival against predatory, especially maternal, attacks.

  17. Negative control of cell division by mreB, a gene that functions in determining the rod shape of Escherichia coli cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachi, M; Matsuhashi, M

    1989-06-01

    Exponentially growing Escherichia coli cells containing additional copies of the shape-determining gene mreB were found to be elongated, whereas mreB mutant cells were spherical and overproduced penicillin-binding protein 3, a septum peptidoglycan synthetase. The effect of the mreB gene on expression of ftsI, the structural gene for penicillin-binding protein 3, was examined by using an ftsI-lacZ fusion gene on a plasmid. Formation of beta-galactosidase from the fusion gene was significantly increased in mreB129 mutant cells, and its overproduction was suppressed to a normal level by the presence of a plasmid containing the mreB gene. These results indicate a negative mechanism of control of cell division by this morphology gene and suggest that the gene functions in determining whether division or elongation of the cells occurs.

  18. Eulerian formulation of elastic rods

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  19. Status of rod consolidation, 1988

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bailey, W.J.

    1989-01-01

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

  20. The dual rod system of amphibians supports colour discrimination at the absolute visual threshold

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yovanovich, Carola A. M.; Koskela, Sanna M.; Nevala, Noora; Kondrashev, Sergei L.

    2017-01-01

    The presence of two spectrally different kinds of rod photoreceptors in amphibians has been hypothesized to enable purely rod-based colour vision at very low light levels. The hypothesis has never been properly tested, so we performed three behavioural experiments at different light intensities with toads (Bufo) and frogs (Rana) to determine the thresholds for colour discrimination. The thresholds of toads were different in mate choice and prey-catching tasks, suggesting that the differential sensitivities of different spectral cone types as well as task-specific factors set limits for the use of colour in these behavioural contexts. In neither task was there any indication of rod-based colour discrimination. By contrast, frogs performing phototactic jumping were able to distinguish blue from green light down to the absolute visual threshold, where vision relies only on rod signals. The remarkable sensitivity of this mechanism comparing signals from the two spectrally different rod types approaches theoretical limits set by photon fluctuations and intrinsic noise. Together, the results indicate that different pathways are involved in processing colour cues depending on the ecological relevance of this information for each task. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Vision in dim light’. PMID:28193811

  1. Automatic cone photoreceptor segmentation using graph theory and dynamic programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Stephanie J; Lokhnygina, Yuliya; Dubis, Adam M; Dubra, Alfredo; Carroll, Joseph; Izatt, Joseph A; Farsiu, Sina

    2013-06-01

    Geometrical analysis of the photoreceptor mosaic can reveal subclinical ocular pathologies. In this paper, we describe a fully automatic algorithm to identify and segment photoreceptors in adaptive optics ophthalmoscope images of the photoreceptor mosaic. This method is an extension of our previously described closed contour segmentation framework based on graph theory and dynamic programming (GTDP). We validated the performance of the proposed algorithm by comparing it to the state-of-the-art technique on a large data set consisting of over 200,000 cones and posted the results online. We found that the GTDP method achieved a higher detection rate, decreasing the cone miss rate by over a factor of five.

  2. Instabilities of a rotating helical rod

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Yunyoung; Ko, William; Kim, Yongsam; Lim, Sookkyung

    2016-11-01

    Bacteria such as Escherichia coli and Vibrio alginolyticus have helical flagellar filament. By rotating a motor, which is located at the bottom end of the flagellar filament embedded in the cell body, CCW or CW, they swim forward or backward. We model a left-handed helix by the Kirchhoff rod theory and use regularized Stokes formulation to study an interaction between the surrounding fluid and the flagellar filament. We perform numerical studies focusing on relations between physical parameters and critical angular frequency of the motor, which separates overwhiring from twirling. We are also interested in the buckling instability of the hook, which is very flexible elastic rod. By measuring buckling angle, which is an angle between rotational axis and helical axis, we observe the effects of physical parameters on buckling of the hook.

  3. Topological mixing with ghost rods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouillart, Emmanuelle; Thiffeault, Jean-Luc; Finn, Matthew D.

    2006-03-01

    Topological chaos relies on the periodic motion of obstacles in a two-dimensional flow in order to form nontrivial braids. This motion generates exponential stretching of material lines, and hence efficient mixing. Boyland, Aref, and Stremler [J. Fluid Mech. 403, 277 (2000)] have studied a specific periodic motion of rods that exhibits topological chaos in a viscous fluid. We show that it is possible to extend their work to cases where the motion of the stirring rods is topologically trivial by considering the dynamics of special periodic points that we call “ghost rods”, because they play a similar role to stirring rods. The ghost rods framework provides a new technique for quantifying chaos and gives insight into the mechanisms that produce chaos and mixing. Numerical simulations for Stokes flow support our results.

  4. Adaptive Optics Reveals Photoreceptor Abnormalities in Diabetic Macular Ischemia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesper, Peter L.; Scarinci, Fabio

    2017-01-01

    Diabetic macular ischemia (DMI) is a phenotype of diabetic retinopathy (DR) associated with chronic hypoxia of retinal tissue. The goal of this prospective observational study was to report evidence of photoreceptor abnormalities using adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscopy (AOSLO) in eyes with DR in the setting of deep capillary plexus (DCP) non-perfusion. Eleven eyes from 11 patients (6 women, age 31–68), diagnosed with DR without macular edema, underwent optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) and AOSLO imaging. One patient without OCTA imaging underwent fluorescein angiography to characterize the enlargement of the foveal avascular zone. The parameters studied included photoreceptor heterogeneity packing index (HPi) on AOSLO, as well as DCP non-perfusion and vessel density on OCTA. Using AOSLO, OCTA and spectral domain (SD)-OCT, we observed that photoreceptor abnormalities on AOSLO and SD-OCT were found in eyes with non-perfusion of the DCP on OCTA. All eight eyes with DCP non-flow on OCTA showed photoreceptor abnormalities on AOSLO. Six of the eight eyes also had outer retinal abnormalities on SD-OCT. Three eyes with DR and robust capillary perfusion of the DCP had normal photoreceptors on SD-OCT and AOSLO. Compared to eyes with DR without DCP non-flow, the eight eyes with DCP non-flow had significantly lower HPi (P = 0.013) and parafoveal DCP vessel density (P = 0.016). We found a significant correlation between cone HPi and parafoveal DCP vessel density (r = 0.681, P = 0.030). Using a novel approach with AOSLO and OCTA, this study shows an association between capillary non-perfusion of the DCP and abnormalities in the photoreceptor layer in eyes with DR. This observation is important in confirming the significant contribution of the DCP to oxygen requirements of photoreceptors in DMI, while highlighting the ability of AOSLO to detect subtle photoreceptor changes not always visible on SD-OCT. PMID:28068435

  5. Calcium-dependent potassium current in barnacle photoreceptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolsover, S R

    1981-12-01

    When barnacle lateral eye photoreceptors are depolarized to membrane potentials of 0 to +50 mV in the dark, the plot of outward current through the cell membrane against time has two distinct maxima. The first maximum occurs 5-10 ms after the depolarization began. The current then decays to a minimum at approximately 500 ms after the onset of depolarization, and then increases to a second maximum 4-6 s after the depolarization began. If depolarization is maintained, the current again decays to reach a steady value approximately 1 min after depolarization began. The increase in current to the maximum at 4-6s from the minimum at approximately 500 ms is termed the "late current." It is maximum for depolarizations to around +25 mV and is reduced in amplitude at more positive potentials. It is not observed when the membrane is depolarized to potentials more positive than +60 mV. The late current is inhibited by external cobaltous ion and external tetraethylammonium ion, and shows a requirement for external calcium ion. When the calcium-sequestering agent EGTA is injected, the late current is abolished. Illumination of a cell under voltage clamp reduces the amplitude of the late current recorded subsequently in the dark. On the basis of the voltage dependence and pharmacology of the late current, it is proposed that the current is a calcium-dependent potassium current.

  6. Eye development and photoreceptor differentiation in the cephalopod Doryteuthis pealeii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koenig, Kristen M; Sun, Peter; Meyer, Eli; Gross, Jeffrey M

    2016-09-01

    Photoreception is a ubiquitous sensory ability found across the Metazoa, and photoreceptive organs are intricate and diverse in their structure. Although the morphology of the compound eye in Drosophila and the single-chambered eye in vertebrates have elaborated independently, the amount of conservation within the 'eye' gene regulatory network remains controversial, with few taxa studied. To better understand the evolution of photoreceptive organs, we established the cephalopod Doryteuthis pealeii as a lophotrochozoan model for eye development. Utilizing histological, transcriptomic and molecular assays, we characterize eye formation in Doryteuthis pealeii Through lineage tracing and gene expression analyses, we demonstrate that cells expressing Pax and Six genes incorporate into the lens, cornea and iris, and the eye placode is the sole source of retinal tissue. Functional assays demonstrate that Notch signaling is required for photoreceptor cell differentiation and retinal organization. This comparative approach places the canon of eye research in traditional models into perspective, highlighting complexity as a result of both conserved and convergent mechanisms.

  7. Contribution of photoreceptor subtypes to spectral wavelength preference in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaguchi, Satoko; Desplan, Claude; Heisenberg, Martin

    2010-03-23

    The visual systems of most species contain photoreceptors with distinct spectral sensitivities that allow animals to distinguish lights by their spectral composition. In Drosophila, photoreceptors R1-R6 have the same spectral sensitivity throughout the eye and are responsible for motion detection. In contrast, photoreceptors R7 and R8 exhibit heterogeneity and are important for color vision. We investigated how photoreceptor types contribute to the attractiveness of light by blocking the function of certain subsets and by measuring differential phototaxis between spectrally different lights. In a "UV vs. blue" choice, flies with only R1-R6, as well as flies with only R7/R8 photoreceptors, preferred blue, suggesting a nonadditive interaction between the two major subsystems. Flies defective for UV-sensitive R7 function preferred blue, whereas flies defective for either type of R8 (blue- or green-sensitive) preferred UV. In a "blue vs. green" choice, flies defective for R8 (blue) preferred green, whereas those defective for R8 (green) preferred blue. Involvement of all photoreceptors [R1-R6, R7, R8 (blue), R8 (green)] distinguishes phototaxis from motion detection that is mediated exclusively by R1-R6.

  8. Visual ecology and potassium conductances of insect photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-04-01

    Voltage-activated potassium channels (Kv channels) in the microvillar photoreceptors of arthropods are responsible for repolarization and regulation of photoreceptor signaling bandwidth. On the basis of analyzing Kv channels in dipteran flies, it was suggested that diurnal, rapidly flying insects predominantly express sustained K(+) conductances, whereas crepuscular and nocturnally active animals exhibit strongly inactivating Kv conductances. The latter was suggested to function for minimizing cellular energy consumption. In this study we further explore the evolutionary adaptations of the photoreceptor channelome to visual ecology and behavior by comparing K(+) conductances in 15 phylogenetically diverse insects, using patch-clamp recordings from dissociated ommatidia. We show that rapid diurnal flyers such as the blowfly (Calliphora vicina) and the honeybee (Apis mellifera) express relatively large noninactivating Kv conductances, conforming to the earlier hypothesis in Diptera. Nocturnal and/or slow-moving species do not in general exhibit stronger Kv conductance inactivation in the physiological membrane voltage range, but the photoreceptors in species that are known to rely more on vision behaviorally had higher densities of sustained Kv conductances than photoreceptors of less visually guided species. No statistically significant trends related to visual performance could be identified for the rapidly inactivating Kv conductances. Counterintuitively, strong negative correlations were observed between photoreceptor capacitance and specific membrane conductance for both sustained and inactivating fractions of Kv conductance, suggesting insignificant evolutionary pressure to offset negative effects of high capacitance on membrane filtering with increased conductance.

  9. Characterization of Emericella nidulans RodA and DewA hydrophobin mutants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Britt Guillaume; Nielsen, Jakob Blæsbjerg; Pedersen, Mona Højgaard

    Hydrophobins are small amphiphilic proteins containing an eight cysteine pattern only found in filamentous fungi. They are involved in the attachment of hyphae to hydrophobic structures and the formation of aerial structures. Five Emericella nidulans mutant strains were examined to study the two...... hydrophobins RodA and DewA. Individual knock-out mutants rodAΔ, dewAΔ and the double deletion strain rodAΔdewAΔ were constructed. Furthermore, two strains containing a point mutation in the first of the cysteines of RodA (rodA-C57G), where one was coupled to the dewA deletion, were included. The reference...... strain (NID1) and dewAΔ displayed green conidia. However, rodAΔ and rodAΔdewAΔ showed a dark green/brown conidial pigmentation, while rodA-C57G and rodAC57G dewAΔ displayed lighter brown conidia. rodAΔ and rodAΔdewAΔ displayed a higher degree of hülle cells compared to the moderate amount observed...

  10. Using Finite Model Analysis and Out of Hot Cell Surrogate Rod Testing to Analyze High Burnup Used Nuclear Fuel Mechanical Properties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Jy-An John [ORNL; Jiang, Hao [ORNL; Wang, Hong [ORNL

    2014-07-01

    Based on a series of FEA simulations, the discussions and the conclusions concerning the impact of the interface bonding efficiency to SNF vibration integrity are provided in this report; this includes the moment carrying capacity distribution between pellets and clad, and the impact of cohesion bonding on the flexural rigidity of the surrogate rod system. As progressive de-bonding occurs at the pellet-pellet interfaces and at the pellet-clad interface, the load ratio of the bending moment carrying capacity gradually shifts from the pellets to the clad; the clad starts to carry a significant portion of the bending moment resistance until reaching the full de-bonding state at the pellet-pellet interface regions. This results in localized plastic deformation of the clad at the pellet-pellet-clad interface region; the associated plastic deformations of SS clad leads to a significant degradation in the stiffness of the surrogate rod. For instance, the flexural rigidity was reduced by 39% from the perfect bond state to the de-bonded state at the pellet-pellet interfaces.

  11. Ablation of EYS in zebrafish causes mislocalisation of outer segment proteins, F-actin disruption and cone-rod dystrophy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Zhaojing; Hu, Xuebin; Liu, Fei; Soares, Dinesh C.; Liu, Xiliang; Yu, Shanshan; Gao, Meng; Han, Shanshan; Qin, Yayun; Li, Chang; Jiang, Tao; Luo, Daji; Guo, An-Yuan; Tang, Zhaohui; Liu, Mugen

    2017-01-01

    Mutations in EYS are associated with autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (arRP) and autosomal recessive cone-rod dystrophy (arCRD) however, the function of EYS and the molecular mechanisms of how these mutations cause retinal degeneration are still unclear. Because EYS is absent in mouse and rat, and the structure of the retina differs substantially between humans and Drosophila, we utilised zebrafish as a model organism to study the function of EYS in the retina. We constructed an EYS-knockout zebrafish-line by TALEN technology which showed visual impairment at an early age, while the histological and immunofluorescence assays indicated the presence of progressive retinal degeneration with a cone predominately affected pattern. These phenotypes recapitulate the clinical manifestations of arCRD patients. Furthermore, the EYS−/− zebrafish also showed mislocalisation of certain outer segment proteins (rhodopsin, opn1lw, opn1sw1, GNB3 and PRPH2), and disruption of actin filaments in photoreceptors. Protein mislocalisation may, therefore, disrupt the function of cones and rods in these zebrafish and cause photoreceptor death. Collectively, these results point to a novel role for EYS in maintaining the morphological structure of F-actin and in protein transport, loss of this function might be the trigger for the resultant cellular events that ultimately lead to photoreceptor death. PMID:28378834

  12. Cholesterol in the rod outer segment: A complex role in a "simple" system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, Arlene; Alexander, Desiree; Boesze-Battaglia, Kathleen

    2016-09-01

    The rod outer segment (ROS) of retinal photoreceptor cells consists of disk membranes surrounded by the plasma membrane. It is a relatively uncomplicated system in which to investigate cholesterol distribution and its functional consequences in biologically relevant membranes. The light sensitive protein, rhodopsin is the major protein in both membranes, but the lipid compositions are significantly different in the disk and plasma membranes. Cholesterol is high in the ROS plasma membrane. Disk membranes are synthesized at the base of the ROS and are also high in cholesterol. However, cholesterol is rapidly depleted as the disks are apically displaced. During this apical displacement the disk phospholipid fatty acyl chains become progressively more unsaturated, which creates an environment unfavorable to cholesterol. Membrane cholesterol has functional consequences. The high cholesterol found in the plasma membrane and in newly synthesized disks inhibits the activation of rhodopsin. As disks are apically displaced and cholesterol is depleted rhodopsin becomes more responsive to light. This effect of cholesterol on rhodopsin activation has been shown in both native and reconstituted membranes. The modulation of activity can be at least partially explained by the effect of cholesterol on bulk lipid properties. Cholesterol decreases the partial free volume of the hydrocarbon region of the bilayer and thereby inhibits rhodopsin conformational changes required for activation. However, cholesterol binds to rhodopsin and may directly affect the protein also. Furthermore, cholesterol stabilizes rhodopsin to thermal denaturation. The membrane must provide an environment that allows rhodopsin conformational changes required for activation while also stabilizing the protein to thermal denaturation. Cholesterol thus plays a complex role in modulating the activity and stability of rhodopsin, which have implications for other G-protein coupled receptors.

  13. Modulation of presynaptic action potential kinetics underlies synaptic facilitation of type B photoreceptors after associative conditioning in Hermissenda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandhi, C C; Matzel, L D

    2000-03-01

    Descriptions of conditioned response generation in Hermissenda stipulate that the synaptic interaction between type B and A photoreceptors should be enhanced after associative pairings of light and rotation. Although evidence from several laboratories has confirmed this assumption, the mechanism underlying this synaptic facilitation has not been elucidated. Here we report that in vitro conditioning (i.e., light paired with stimulation of vestibular hair cells) modifies the kinetics of presynaptic action potentials in the B photoreceptor in a manner sufficient to account for this synaptic facilitation. After paired training, we observed an increase in the duration of evoked action potentials and a decrease in the amplitude of the spike afterhyperpolarization in the B-cell. As previously reported, paired training also enhanced the excitability (i.e., input resistance and evoked spike rate) of the B photoreceptor. In a second experiment, simultaneous recordings were made in type B and A photoreceptors, and paired training was found to produce an increase in the amplitude of the IPSP in the A photoreceptor in response to an evoked spike in the B-cell. Importantly, there was no change in the initial slope of the postsynaptic IPSP in the A photoreceptor, suggesting that spike duration-independent mechanisms of neurotransmitter exocytosis or postsynaptic receptor sensitivity did not contribute to the observed synaptic facilitation. Perfusion of 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) mimicked a known effect of behavioral conditioning in that it specifically reduced the amplitude of the transient voltage-dependent K(+) current (I(A)) in the B-cell, but in addition, produced action potential broadening and synaptic facilitation that was analogous to that observed after in vitro conditioning. Finally, the effect of 4-AP on B-cell action potentials and on the postsynaptic IPSP in the A-cell was occluded by previous paired (but not unpaired) training, suggesting that the prolongation of the B-cell

  14. Quantitative analysis of cone photoreceptor distribution and its relationship with axial length, age, and early age-related macular degeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryo Obata

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: It has not been clarified whether early age-related macular degeneration (AMD is associated with cone photoreceptor distribution. We used adaptive optics fundus camera to examine cone photoreceptors in the macular area of aged patients and quantitatively analyzed its relationship between the presence of early AMD and cone distribution. METHODS: Sixty cases aged 50 or older were studied. The eyes were examined with funduscopy and spectral-domain optical coherence tomography to exclude the eyes with any abnormalities at two sites of measurement, 2° superior and 5° temporal to the fovea. High-resolution retinal images with cone photoreceptor mosaic were obtained with adaptive optics fundus camera (rtx1, Imagine Eyes, France. After adjusting for axial length, cone packing density was calculated and the relationship with age, axial length, or severity of early AMD based on the age-related eye disease study (AREDS classification was analyzed. RESULTS: Patient's age ranged from 50 to 77, and axial length from 21.7 to 27.5 mm. Mean density in metric units and that in angular units were 24,900 cells/mm2, 2,170 cells/deg2 at 2° superior, and 18,500 cells/mm2, 1,570 cels/deg2 at 5° temporal, respectively. Axial length was significantly correlated with the density calculated in metric units, but not with that in angular units. Age was significantly correlated with the density both in metric and angular units at 2° superior. There was no significant difference in the density in metric and angular units between the eyes with AREDS category one and those with categories two or three. CONCLUSION: Axial length and age were significantly correlated with parafoveal cone photoreceptor distribution. The results do not support that early AMD might influence cone photoreceptor density in the area without drusen or pigment abnormalities.

  15. The Third ATLAS ROD Workshop

    CERN Multimedia

    Poggioli, L.

    A new-style Workshop After two successful ATLAS ROD Workshops dedicated to the ROD hardware and held at the Geneva University in 1998 and in 2000, a new style Workshop took place at LAPP in Annecy on November 14-15, 2002. This time the Workshop was fully dedicated to the ROD-TDAQ integration and software in view of the near future integration activities of the final RODs for the detector assembly and commissioning. More precisely, the aim of this workshop was to get from the sub-detectors the parameters needed for T-DAQ, as well as status and plans from ROD builders. On the other hand, what was decided and assumed had to be stated (like EB decisions and URDs), and also support plans. The Workshop gathered about 70 participants from all ATLAS sub-detectors and the T-DAQ community. The quite dense agenda allowed nevertheless for many lively discussions, and for a dinner in the old town of Annecy. The Sessions The Workshop was organized in five main sessions: Assumptions and recommendations Sub-de...

  16. PCB1254暴露致幼年斑马鱼视动反应异常及感光细胞发育相关基因表达变化%Exposure to PCB1254 caused abnormal OMR and photoreceptor cells growth-related gene expressions changes in the zebrafish larvae

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张昕; 洪琴; 杨蕾; 张敏; 郭锡熔; 池霞; 童梅玲

    2015-01-01

    Objective:To study the optomotor response( OMR) and retinal photoreceptor cell growth-related gene expressions of zebrafish larvae after exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls ( PCBs ) after fertilization. Methods:Zebrafish were exposed to PCB1254 at concentrations of 0. 125, 0. 25, 0. 5 and 1 mg · L-1 . A blank group and 0. 01% methanol group were set up. After exposed for 7 d, the visual behavior of zebrafish was assessed using OMR tests. The photoreceptor cell growth-related gene ( CRX, RHO, SWS1 and SWS2 ) expressions were also detected. Results:(1) when the grating spatial frequency was 0. 20 LP·mm-1 and the moving speed was 25 cm· s-1, the OMR sensitive ratio decreased significantly in 0. 5 mg·L-1 and 1 mg·L-1 groups(P<0. 05). (2) The SWS2 gene expressions declined significantly in all the experimental groups ( P <0. 05 ) . The CRX, RHO and SWS1 gene expressions all decreased significantly in 0. 5 mg · L-1 and 1 mg · L-1 groups ( P < 0. 05 ) . Conclusion:Exposed to 0. 5 mg · L-1 and 1 mg · L-1 concentrations of PCB1254 can cause abnormal OMR and down-regulations of the photoreceptor cells growth-related gene expressions, indicating that it is necessary to strengthen the monitoring and control of adverse influences of environmental toxin on the children eyes development.%目的::研究受精后暴露PCB1254对斑马鱼幼鱼视动反应及视网膜感光细胞发育相关基因表达的影响。方法:对受精后斑马鱼胚胎进行不同质量浓度的PCB1254(0.125、0.25、0.5、1 mg·L-1)暴露处理,同时设立空白对照和0.01%甲醇对照组。暴露7 d后,观察幼年期斑马鱼视动反应及感光细胞发育相关基因CRX、RHO、SWS1、SWS2表达的变化。结果:(1)当条栅空间频率为0.20线· mm-1,移动速度为25 cm · s-1时,0.5 mg·L-1和1 mg·L-1组的幼鱼视动反应敏感比例明显降低(P<0.05)。(2)各实验浓度组的SWS2基因表达均明显下调( P <0.05),0.5 mg · L-1和1 mg · L-1

  17. Cone photoreceptors are the main targets for gene therapy of NPHP5 (IQCB1) or NPHP6 (CEP290) blindness: generation of an all-cone Nphp6 hypomorph mouse that mimics the human retinal ciliopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cideciyan, Artur V; Rachel, Rivka A; Aleman, Tomas S; Swider, Malgorzata; Schwartz, Sharon B; Sumaroka, Alexander; Roman, Alejandro J; Stone, Edwin M; Jacobson, Samuel G; Swaroop, Anand

    2011-04-01

    Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a severe autosomal recessive childhood blindness, is caused by mutations in at least 15 genes. The most common molecular form is a ciliopathy due to NPHP6 (CEP290) mutations and subjects have profound loss of vision. A similarly severe phenotype occurs in the related ciliopathy NPHP5 (IQCB1)-LCA. Recent success of retinal gene therapy in one form of LCA prompted the question whether we know enough about human NPHP5 and NPHP6 disease to plan such treatment. We determined that there was early-onset rapid degeneration of rod photoreceptors in young subjects with these ciliopathies. Rod outer segment (OS) lamination, when detectable, was disorganized. Retinal pigment epithelium lipofuscin accumulation indicated that rods had existed in the past in most subjects. In contrast to early rod losses, the all-cone human fovea in NPHP5- and NPHP6-LCA of all ages retained cone nuclei, albeit with abnormal inner segments and OS. The rd16 mouse, carrying a hypomorphic Nphp6 allele, was a good model of the rod-dominant human extra-foveal retina. Rd16 mice showed normal genesis of photoreceptors, including the formation of cilia, followed by abnormal elaboration of OS and rapid degeneration. To produce a model of the all-cone human fovea in NPHP6-LCA, we generated rd16;Nrl-/- double-mutant mice. They showed substantially retained cone photoreceptors with disproportionate cone function loss, such as in the human disease. NPHP5- and NPHP6-LCA across a wide age spectrum are thus excellent candidates for cone-directed gene augmentation therapy, and the rd16;Nrl-/- mouse is an appropriate model for pre-clinical proof-of-concept studies.

  18. Binding of Ca2+ to Glutamic Acid-Rich Polypeptides from the Rod Outer Segment

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  19. Acute and Protracted Cell Death in Light-Induced Retinal Degeneration in the Canine Model of Rhodopsin Autosomal Dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudharsan, Raghavi; Simone, Kristina M; Anderson, Nathan P; Aguirre, Gustavo D; Beltran, William A

    2017-01-01

    To characterize a light damage paradigm and establish structural and immunocytochemical measures of acute and protracted light-induced retinal degeneration in the rhodopsin (RHO) T4R dog model of RHO-autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (ADRP). Retinal light damage was induced in mutant dogs with a 1-minute exposure to various light intensities (0.1-1.0 mW/cm2) delivered with a Ganzfeld stimulator, or by fundus photography. Photoreceptor cell death was assessed by TUNEL assay, and alterations in retinal layers were examined by histology and immunohistochemistry 24 hours and 2 weeks after light exposure. Detailed topographic maps were made to document changes in the outer retinal layers of all four retinal quadrants 2 weeks post exposure. Twenty-four hours post light exposure, the severity of photoreceptor cell death was dose dependent. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed disruption of rod outer segments, focal loss of the RPE integrity, and an increase in expression of endothelin receptor B in Müller cells with the two highest doses of light and fundus photography. Two weeks after light exposure, persistence of photoreceptor death, thinning of the outer nuclear layer, and induction of Müller cell gliosis occurred with the highest doses of light. We have characterized outcome measures of acute and continuing retinal degeneration in the RHO T4R dog following light exposure. These will be used to assess the molecular mechanisms of light-induced damage and rescue strategies in this large animal model of RHO-ADRP.

  20. Large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels facilitate transmitter release in salamander rod synapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Jian Wei; Slaughter, Malcolm M

    2005-08-17

    Large-conductance calcium-activated potassium (BK) channels are colocalized with calcium channels at sites of exocytosis at the presynaptic terminals throughout the nervous system. It is expected that their activation would provide negative feedback to transmitter release, but the opposite is sometimes observed. Attempts to resolve this apparent paradox based on alterations in action potential waveform have been ambiguous. In an alternative approach, we investigated the influence of this channel on neurotransmitter release in a nonspiking neuron, the salamander rod photoreceptors. Surprisingly, the BK channel facilitates calcium-mediated transmitter release from rods. The two presynaptic channels form a positive coupled loop. Calcium influx activates the BK channel current, leading to potassium efflux that increases the calcium current. The normal physiological voltage range of the rod is well matched to the dynamics of this positive loop. When the rod is further depolarized, then the hyperpolarizing BK channel current exceeds its facilitatory effect, causing truncation of transmitter release. Thus, the calcium channel-BK channel linkage performs two functions at the synapse: nonlinear potentiator and safety brake.

  1. Topological Optimization of Rod Mixers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finn, Matthew D.; Thiffeault, Jean-Luc

    2006-11-01

    Stirring of fluid with moving rods is necessary in many practical applications to achieve homogeneity. These rods are topological obstacles that force stretching of fluid elements. The resulting stretching and folding is commonly observed as filaments and striations, and is a precursor to mixing. In a space-time diagram, the trajectories of the rods form a braid [1], and the properties of this braid impose a minimal complexity in the flow. We discuss how optimal mixing protocols can be obtained by a judicious choice of braid, and how these protocols can be implemented using simple gearing [2].[12pt] [1] P. L. Boyland, H. Aref, and M. A. Stremler, JFM 403, 277 (2000).[8pt] [2] J.-L. Thiffeault and M. D. Finn, http://arxiv.org/nlin/0603003

  2. Advanced gray rod control assembly

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  3. Dim-light photoreceptor of chub mackerel Scomber japonicus and the photoresponse upon illumination with LEDs of different wavelengths.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Jun-Chul; Choi, Mi-Jin; Yang, Yong-Soo; Lee, Hyung-Been; Yu, Young-Moon; Kim, Jong-Myoung

    2016-06-01

    To study the absorption characteristics of rhodopsin, a dim-light photoreceptor, in chub mackerel (Scomber japonicus) and the relationship between light wavelengths on the photoresponse, the rod opsin gene was cloned into an expression vector, pMT4. Recombinant opsin was transiently expressed in COS-1 cells and reconstituted with 11-cis-retinal. Cells containing the regenerated rhodopsin were solubilized and subjected to UV/Vis spectroscopic analysis in the dark and upon illumination. Difference spectra from the lysates indicated an absorption maximum of mackerel rhodopsin around 500 nm. Four types of light-emitting diode (LED) modules with different wavelengths (red, peak 627 nm; cyan, 505 nm; blue, 442 nm; white, 447 + 560 nm) were constructed to examine their effects on the photoresponse in chub mackerel. Behavioral responses of the mackerels, including speed and frequencies acclimated in the dark and upon LED illumination, were analyzed using an underwater acoustic camera. Compared to an average speed of 22.25 ± 1.57 cm/s of mackerel movement in the dark, speed increased to 22.97 ± 0.29, 24.66 ± 1.06, 26.28 ± 2.28, and 25.19 ± 1.91 cm/s upon exposure to red, blue, cyan, and white LEDs, respectively. There were increases of 103.48 ± 1.58, 109.37 ± 5.29, 118.48 ± 10.82, and 109.43 ± 3.92 %, respectively, in the relative speed of the fishes upon illumination with red, blue, cyan, and white LEDs compared with that in the dark (set at 100 %). Similar rate of wavelength-dependent responses was observed in a frequency analysis. These results indicate that an LED emitting a peak wavelength close to an absorption maximum of rhodopsin is more effective at eliciting a response to light.

  4. Retinal rod GTPase turnover rate increases with concentration: a key to the control of visual excitation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dratz, E A; Lewis, J W; Schaechter, L E; Parker, K R; Kliger, D S

    1987-07-31

    Guanosine triphosphate (GTP) binding proteins mediate cellular responses to hormones, neurotransmitters, growth factors and light. Activated GTP binding proteins are shut off by GTPase mediated hydrolysis of GTP. Photoreceptor GTPase rates are reported to be 10-50 times too slow to account for electrophysiological recovery time after light stimulus. Recovery rates of other parts of the system, however, appear fast enough. We present evidence that the GTPase rate increases markedly with photoreceptor membrane concentration implying the existence of a diffusible factor controlling the GTPase. When extrapolated to physiological concentrations, the GTPase turnover rate is fast enough (0.25-1.5 sec) to account for the recovery rate of the light stimulated signal of the photoreceptor cells.

  5. Locally periodic Timoshenko rod: experiment and theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz-de-Anda, A; Pimentel, A; Flores, J; Morales, A; Gutiérrez, L; Méndez-Sánchez, R A

    2005-05-01

    The flexural vibrations of a locally periodic rod, which consists of N unit cells, are discussed both from the experimental and theoretical points of view. Timoshenko's beam theory and the transfer matrix method are used to calculate the normal-mode frequencies and amplitudes. The theoretical values are then compared with the experimental ones, which are obtained using an electromagnetic acoustic transducer (EMAT). Good agreement between the numerical results and the experimental measurements is obtained. It is shown that as N grows, a band spectrum emerges.

  6. Morphological Diversity of the Rod Spherule: A Study of Serially Reconstructed Electron Micrographs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuai Li

    Full Text Available Rod spherules are the site of the first synaptic contact in the retina's rod pathway, linking rods to horizontal and bipolar cells. Rod spherules have been described and characterized through electron micrograph (EM and other studies, but their morphological diversity related to retinal circuitry and their intracellular structures have not been quantified. Most rod spherules are connected to their soma by an axon, but spherules of rods on the surface of the Mus musculus outer plexiform layer often lack an axon and have a spherule structure that is morphologically distinct from rod spherules connected to their soma by an axon. Retraction of the rod axon and spherule is often observed in disease processes and aging, and the retracted rod spherule superficially resembles rod spherules lacking an axon. We hypothesized that retracted spherules take on an axonless spherule morphology, which may be easier to maintain in a diseased state. To test our hypothesis, we quantified the spatial organization and subcellular structures of rod spherules with and without axons. We then compared them to the retracted spherules in a disease model, mice that overexpress Dscam (Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule, to gain a better understanding of the rod synapse in health and disease.We reconstructed serial EM images of wild type and DscamGoF (gain of function rod spherules at a resolution of 7 nm in the X-Y axis and 60 nm in the Z axis. Rod spherules with and without axons, and retracted spherules in the DscamGoF retina, were reconstructed. The rod spherule intracellular organelles, the invaginating dendrites of rod bipolar cells and horizontal cell axon tips were also reconstructed for statistical analysis.Stereotypical rod (R1 spherules occupy the outer two-thirds of the outer plexiform layer (OPL, where they present as spherical terminals with large mitochondria. This spherule group is highly uniform and composed more than 90% of the rod spherule population. Rod

  7. Two Cyanobacterial Photoreceptors Regulate Photosynthetic Light Harvesting by Sensing Teal, Green, Yellow, and Red Light.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiltbank, Lisa B; Kehoe, David M

    2016-02-09

    color-sensing capabilities that coregulate an important photosynthetic light-harvesting protein in response to teal, green, yellow, and red light. Other cyanobacteriochromes that have been shown to interact functionally sense wavelengths of light that are close to each other, which makes it difficult to clearly identify their physiological roles in the cell. Our finding of two photoreceptors with broad light color-sensing capabilities and clearly defined physiological roles provides new insights into complex light color sensing and its regulation. Copyright © 2016 Wiltbank and Kehoe.

  8. Multiple domains of Stardust differentially mediate localisation of the Crumbs-Stardust complex during photoreceptor development in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  9. 骨髓间充质干细胞在视网膜移植领域的研究进展%Research progress of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells applied to the retina transplantation photoreceptor-like cell

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    徐志刚; 吕淑慧; 穆敬中; 张雪岩; 齐艳秀; 朱金玲

    2013-01-01

    临床上对于视网膜退行性疾病的治疗仍然只停留在改善循环、营养神经等支持治疗阶段,缺少特效的治疗方法,骨髓间充质干细胞(bone mesenchymal stem cells,BMSCs)是具有较强自我复制功能和多向分化潜能的一类细胞,人们开始通过尝试不同的分离、诱导、移植等手段,以实现其向视网膜细胞的转化,并最终实现体内的替代治疗.我们就BMSCs在视网膜移植领域的研究进展进行综述,以期为进一步的研究提供参考.

  10. Restoring visual function to blind mice with a photoswitch that exploits electrophysiological remodeling of retinal ganglion cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tochitsky, Ivan; Polosukhina, Aleksandra; Degtyar, Vadim E; Gallerani, Nicholas; Smith, Caleb M; Friedman, Aaron; Van Gelder, Russell N; Trauner, Dirk; Kaufer, Daniela; Kramer, Richard H

    2014-02-19

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are blinding diseases caused by the degeneration of rods and cones, leaving the remainder of the visual system unable to respond to light. Here, we report a chemical photoswitch named DENAQ that restores retinal responses to white light of intensity similar to ordinary daylight. A single intraocular injection of DENAQ photosensitizes the blind retina for days, restoring electrophysiological and behavioral responses with no toxicity. Experiments on mouse strains with functional, nonfunctional, or degenerated rods and cones show that DENAQ is effective only in retinas with degenerated photoreceptors. DENAQ confers light sensitivity on a hyperpolarization-activated inward current that is enhanced in degenerated retina, enabling optical control of retinal ganglion cell firing. The acceptable light sensitivity, favorable spectral sensitivity, and selective targeting to diseased tissue make DENAQ a prime drug candidate for vision restoration in patients with end-stage RP and AMD. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Late-stage neuronal progenitors in the retina are radial Müller glia that function as retinal stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernardos, Rebecca L; Barthel, Linda K; Meyers, Jason R; Raymond, Pamela A

    2007-06-27

    Neuronal progenitors in the mammalian brain derive from radial glia or specialized astrocytes. In developing neural retina, radial glia-like Müller cells are generated late in neurogenesis and are not considered to be neuronal progenitors, but they do proliferate after injury and can express neuronal markers, suggesting a latent neurogenic capacity. To examine the neurogenic capacity of retinal glial cells, we used lineage tracing in transgenic zebrafish with a glial-specific promoter (gfap, for glial fibrillary acid protein) driving green fluorescent protein in differentiated Müller glia. We found that all Müller glia in the zebrafish retina express low levels of the multipotent progenitor marker Pax6 (paired box gene 6), and they proliferate at a low frequency in the intact, uninjured retina. Müller glia-derived progenitors express Crx (cone rod homeobox) and are late retinal progenitors that generate the rod photoreceptor lineage in the postembryonic retina. These Müller glia-derived progenitors also remain competent to produce earlier neuronal lineages, in that they respond to loss of cone photoreceptors by specifically regenerating the missing neurons. We conclude that zebrafish Müller glia function as multipotent retinal stem cells that generate retinal neurons by homeostatic and regenerative developmental mechanisms.

  12. Human gene therapy for RPE65 isomerase deficiency activates the retinoid cycle of vision but with slow rod kinetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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 gene therapy.

  13. [Ultrastructure of the "rudimentary secretory photoreceptors" (RSP) of the embryonic pineal body of Lacerta vivipara J. (Reptilia, Lacertilia) and the origin of the RSP of Sauropsida].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meiniel, A

    1975-10-20

    The "secretory rudimentary photoreceptor-cells" of Lacerta vivipara J., during embryonic stages, exhibit photosensory differentiations (disks). Our ontogenetic observations agree with the phylogenetic studies and support the concept of a "sensory cell line" (Colin, 1969) in the pineal organ of vertebrates.

  14. MATH5 controls the acquisition of multiple retinal cell fates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Liang

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Math5-null mutation results in the loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs and in a concurrent increase of amacrine and cone cells. However, it remains unclear whether there is a cell fate switch of Math5-lineage cells in the absence of Math5 and whether MATH5 cell-autonomously regulates the differentiation of the above retinal neurons. Here, we performed a lineage analysis of Math5-expressing cells in developing mouse retinas using a conditional GFP reporter (Z/EG activated by a Math5-Cre knock-in allele. We show that during normal retinogenesis, Math5-lineage cells mostly develop into RGCs, horizontal cells, cone photoreceptors, rod photoreceptors, and amacrine cells. Interestingly, amacrine cells of Math5-lineage cells are predominately of GABAergic, cholinergic, and A2 subtypes, indicating that Math5 plays a role in amacrine subtype specification. In the absence of Math5, more Math5-lineage cells undergo cell fate conversion from RGCs to the above retinal cell subtypes, and occasionally to cone-bipolar cells and Müller cells. This change in cell fate choices is accompanied by an up-regulation of NEUROD1, RXRγ and BHLHB5, the transcription factors essential for the differentiation of retinal cells other than RGCs. Additionally, loss of Math5 causes the failure of early progenitors to exit cell cycle and leads to a significant increase of Math5-lineage cells remaining in cell cycle. Collectively, these data suggest that Math5 regulates the generation of multiple retinal cell types via different mechanisms during retinogenesis.

  15. Nano-rods of zinc oxide in nano-graphene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Pedro; Chavira, Elizabeth; Monroy, Marel; Elizalde, José; Santiago, Patricia; Sato, Roberto; Tejeda, Adriana; González, Guillermina; Novelo, Omar; Flores, Carlos

    2014-03-01

    It's of great interest to study the devices based on nano-ZnO and graphene, for their electromagnetic and optical properties to increase the efficiency of solar cells. The graphene multilayers synthesis was done by mechanosynthesis, grinding in a mechanical agate mortar. The zinc oxide nano-rods were synthesized from zinc acetate dihydrate, Ace, (Sigma Aldrich) and ethylene diamine, En, (Sigma Aldrich) with a 1:2 ratio of reagents En/Ace. The ZnO nano-rods in nano-tubes graphene were obtained by mechanosynthesis. The X-ray powder diffraction, shows the shift of C with PDF 12-0212 and ZnO, Zincite PDF 36-1451, both with hexagonal unit cell. The grain size and morphology of graphene (multilayers and nano-tubes), ZnO nano-rods and ZnO-graphene mixture (multilayers, nano-tubes) were observed by scanning electron microscope. Transmission electron microscope, corroborates shown in SEM. Raman spectroscopy, shows the shift of multilayer graphene and the ZnO nano-rods. In photoluminescence measurements, observe the change in intensity in the band defects. Magnetic properties characterization was carried out by Vibrating Sample Magnetometry. We conclude that graphite multilayers dislocated by cutting efforts, forming graphene nano-tubes and encapsulated ZnO nano-rods within graphene.

  16. Control rods in LMFBRs: a physics assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1982-08-01

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

  17. Photovoltaic properties of multilayered quantum dot/quantum rod-sensitized TiO₂ solar cells fabricated by SILAR and electrophoresis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerdán-Pasarán, Andrea; López-Luke, Tzarara; Esparza, Diego; Zarazúa, Isaac; De la Rosa, Elder; Fuentes-Ramírez, Rosalba; Alatorre-Ordaz, Alejandro; Sánchez-Solís, Ana; Torres-Castro, Alejandro; Zhang, Jin Z

    2015-07-28

    A multilayered semiconductor sensitizer structure composed of three differently sized CdSe quantum rods (QRs), labeled as Q530, Q575, Q590, were prepared and deposited on the surface of mesoporous TiO2 nanoparticles by electrophoretic deposition (EPD) for photovoltaic applications. By varying the arrangement of layers as well as the time of EPD, the photoconversion efficiency was improved from 2.0% with the single layer of CdSe QRs (TiO2/Q590/ZnS) to 2.9% for multilayers (TiO2/Q590Q575/ZnS). The optimal EPD time was shorter for the multilayered structures. The effect of CdS quantum dots (QDs) deposited by successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction (SILAR) was also investigated. The addition of CdS QDs resulted in the enhancement of efficiency to 4.1% for the configuration (TiO2/CdS/Q590Q575/ZnS), due to increased photocurrent and photovoltage. Based on detailed structural, optical, and photoelectrical studies, the increased photocurrent is attributed to broadened light absorption while the increased voltage is due to a shift in the relevant energy levels.

  18. PHOTORECEPTOR DEGENERATION IN A MOUNTAIN LION CUB (PUMA CONCOLOR).

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiSalvo, Andrew R; Reilly, Christopher M; Wiggans, K Tomo; Woods, Leslie W; Wack, Ray F; Clifford, Deana L

    2016-12-01

    An orphaned 4-mo-old female mountain lion cub ( Puma concolor ) was captured along the coastline in Montaña de Oro State Park in Los Osos, California, USA. Following suspicion that the cub was visually impaired, ophthalmic examination revealed diffuse bilateral retinal atrophy. Due to a poor prognosis, humane euthanasia was elected. Necropsy and histopathological findings were consistent with photoreceptor degeneration. Based on the cub's signalment, history, and histopathology, a genetic or nutritional etiology was suspected, with the former etiology more strongly supported. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of photoreceptor degeneration in a wild felid and should be considered in cases of blindness.

  19. Solid-state-laser-rod holder

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1981-08-11

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

  20. The role of Zic family zinc finger transcription factors in the proliferation and differentiation of retinal progenitor cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Watabe, Yui [Division of Molecular and Developmental Biology, Institute of Medical Science, University of Tokyo