Browsing by Subject "SPECTRAL SENSITIVITY"

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  • Donner, Kristian; Yovanovich, Carola (2020)
    From the mid-19th century until the 1980's, frogs and toads provided important research models for many fundamental questions in visual neuroscience. In the present century, they have been largely neglected. Yet they are animals with highly developed vision, a complex retina built on the basic vertebrate plan, an accessible brain, and an experimentally useful behavioural repertoire. They also offer a rich diversity of species and life histories on a reasonably restricted physiological and evolutionary background. We suggest that important insights may be gained from revisiting classical questions in anurans with state-of-the-art methods. At the input to the system, this especially concerns the molecular evolution of visual pigments and photoreceptors, at the output, the relation between retinal signals, brain processing and behavioural decision-making.
  • Feldman, Tatiana; Yakovleva, Marina; Viljanen, Martta Leena Maria; Lindström, Magnus; Donner, Kristian; Ostrovsky, M.A. (2020)
    We have studied dark-adaptation at three levels in the eyes of the crustaceanMysis relictaover 2-3 weeks after exposing initially dark-adapted animals to strong white light: regeneration of 11-cisretinal through the retinoid cycle (by HPLC), restoration of native rhodopsin in photoreceptor membranes (by MSP), and recovery of eye photosensitivity (by ERG). We compare two model populations ("Sea", S-p, and "Lake", L-p) inhabiting, respectively, a low light and an extremely dark environment. 11-cisretinal reached 60-70% of the pre-exposure levels after 2 weeks in darkness in both populations. The only significant L-p/S(p)difference in the retinoid cycle was that L(p)had much higher levels of retinol, both basal and light-released. In S-p, rhodopsin restoration and eye photoresponse recovery parallelled 11-cisretinal regeneration. In L-p, however, even after 3 weeks only ca. 25% of the rhabdoms studied had incorporated new rhodopsin, and eye photosensitivity showed only incipient recovery from severe depression. The absorbance spectra of the majority of the L(p)rhabdoms stayed constant around 490-500 nm, consistent with metarhodopsin II dominance. We conclude that sensitivity recovery of S(p)eyes was rate-limited by the regeneration of 11-cisretinal, whilst that of L(p)eyes was limited by inertia in photoreceptor membrane turnover.
  • Viljanen, Martta L. M.; Nevala, Noora E.; Calais-Grano, Cecilia L.; Lindstrom, K. Magnus W.; Donner, Kristian (2017)
    The eyes of two glacial-relict populations of opossum shrimp Mysis relicta inhabiting the different photic environments of a deep, dark-brown freshwater lake and a variably lit bay of the Baltic Sea differ in their susceptibility to functional depression from strong light exposures. The lake population is much more vulnerable than the sea population. We hypothesized that the difference reflects physiological adaptation mechanisms operating on long time scales rather than genetically fixed differences between the populations. To test this, we studied how acclimation to ultra-slowly increased illumination (on time scales of several weeks to months) affected the resilience of the eyes to bright-light exposures. Light responses of whole eyes were measured by electroretinography, the visual-pigment content of single rhabdoms by microspectrophotometry and the structural integrity of photoreceptor cells by electron microscopy (EM). Slow acclimation mitigated and even abolished the depression of photoresponsiveness caused by strong light exposures, making a dramatic difference especially in the lake animals. Still, acclimation in the sea animals was faster and the EM studies suggested intrinsic differences in the dynamics of microvillar membrane cycling. In conclusion, we report a novel form of physiological adaptation to general light levels, effective on the time scale of seasonal changes. It explains part but not all of the differences in light tolerance between the lake and sea populations.