The dual rod system of amphibians supports colour discrimination at the absolute visual threshold

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dc.contributor University of Helsinki, Ala-Laurila Lab en
dc.contributor University of Helsinki, Department of Biosciences en Yovanovich, Carola A. M. Koskela, Sanna M. Nevala, Noora Kondrashev, Sergei L. Kelber, Almut Donner, Kristian 2017-09-07T17:31:15Z 2017-09-07T17:31:15Z 2017-04-05
dc.identifier.citation Yovanovich , C A M , Koskela , S M , Nevala , N , Kondrashev , S L , Kelber , A & Donner , K 2017 , ' The dual rod system of amphibians supports colour discrimination at the absolute visual threshold ' Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. Biological Sciences , vol 372 , no. 1717 , 20160066 . DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0066 en
dc.identifier.issn 0962-8436
dc.identifier.other PURE: 82252378
dc.identifier.other PURE UUID: d61bd7ac-bb0b-4949-bafe-7068ee9f0606
dc.identifier.other WOS: 000394258900005
dc.identifier.other Scopus: 85012247067
dc.description.abstract 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'. en
dc.format.extent 10
dc.language.iso eng
dc.publisher The Royal Society of Chemistry
dc.relation.ispartof Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. Biological Sciences
dc.rights Paid Open Acccess. en
dc.subject Bufo en
dc.subject Rana en
dc.subject photoreceptors en
dc.subject behaviour en
dc.subject visual threshold en
dc.subject colour vision en
dc.subject TOAD BUFO-BUFO en
dc.subject GREEN RODS en
dc.subject DARK NOISE en
dc.subject RED RODS en
dc.subject PIGMENTS en
dc.subject VISION en
dc.subject LIGHT en
dc.subject 3111 Biomedicine en
dc.subject 1182 Biochemistry, cell and molecular biology en
dc.title The dual rod system of amphibians supports colour discrimination at the absolute visual threshold en
dc.type A1 Refereed journal article
dc.description.version Peer reviewed
dc.type.uri info:eu-repo/semantics/article
dc.type.uri info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion

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