Melanopsin-dependent nonvisual responses: Evidence for photopigment bistability in vivo

Ludovic S. Mure, Camille Rieux, Samer Hattar, Howard M. Cooper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In mammals, nonvisual responses to light have been shown to involve intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGC) that express melanopsin and that are modulated by input from both rods and cones. Recent in vitro evidence suggests that melanopsin possesses dual photosensory and photoisomerase functions, previously thought to be a unique feature of invertebrate rhabdomeric photopigments. In cultured cells that normally do not respond to light, heterologous expression of mammalian melanopsin confers light sensitivity that can be restored by prior stimulation with appropriate wavelengths. Using three different physiological and behavioral assays, we show that this in vitro property translates to in vivo, melanopsin-dependent nonvisual responses. We find that prestimulation with long-wavelength light not only restores but enhances single-unit responses of SCN neurons to 480-nm light, whereas the long-wavelength stimulus alone fails to elicit any response. Recordings in Opn4-/- mice confirm that melanopsin provides the main photosensory input to the SCN, and furthermore, demonstrate that melanopsin is required for response enhancement, because this capacity is abolished in the knockout mouse. The efficiency of the light-enhancement effect depends on wavelength, irradiance, and duration. Prior long-wavelength light exposure also enhances short-wavelength-induced phase shifts of locomotor activity and pupillary constriction, consistent with the expression of a photoisomerase-like function in nonvisual responses to light.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)411-424
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Biological Rhythms
Volume22
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2007

Fingerprint

wavelengths
Light
Photophobia
Vertebrate Photoreceptor Cells
Retinal Ganglion Cells
rods (retina)
Invertebrates
Locomotion
melanopsin
cones (retina)
Constriction
Knockout Mice
mice
Mammals
Cultured Cells
cultured cells
locomotion
neurons
invertebrates
Neurons

Keywords

  • Bistable
  • Circadian timing system
  • Electrophysiology
  • Melanopsin
  • Photoreceptor
  • Pupillary reflex
  • SCN

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

Cite this

Melanopsin-dependent nonvisual responses : Evidence for photopigment bistability in vivo. / Mure, Ludovic S.; Rieux, Camille; Hattar, Samer; Cooper, Howard M.

In: Journal of Biological Rhythms, Vol. 22, No. 5, 10.2007, p. 411-424.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Mure, Ludovic S. ; Rieux, Camille ; Hattar, Samer ; Cooper, Howard M. / Melanopsin-dependent nonvisual responses : Evidence for photopigment bistability in vivo. In: Journal of Biological Rhythms. 2007 ; Vol. 22, No. 5. pp. 411-424.
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