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We have resolved a central and long-standing paradox in understanding the amplification of rod phototransduction by making direct measurements of the gains of the underlying enzymatic amplifiers. We find that under optimized conditions a single photoisomerized rhodopsin activates transducin molecules and phosphodiesterase (PDE) catalytic subunits at rates(More)
A central step in vertebrate visual transduction is the rapid drop in cGMP levels that causes cGMP-gated ion channels in the photoreceptor cell membrane to close. It has long been a puzzle that the cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDE) whose activation causes this decrease contains not only catalytic sites for cGMP hydrolysis but also noncatalytic cGMP binding(More)
Recoverin is a 23-kDa Ca(2+)-binding protein found predominantly in vertebrate photoreceptor cells. Recent electrophysiological and biochemical studies suggest that recoverin may regulate the photoresponse by inhibiting rhodopsin phosphorylation. We find in both cell homogenates and reconstituted systems that the inhibition of rhodopsin phosphorylation by(More)
The concentration of guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cyclic GMP) has been examined in suspensions of freshly isolated frog rod outer segments using conditions which previously have been shown to maintain the ability of outer segments to perform a light-induced permeability change (presence of calf serum, anti-oxidant, and low calcium concentration).(More)
This study examines whether changes in cGMP concentration initiated by illumination of frog rod photoreceptors occur rapidly enough to implicate cGMP as an intermediate between rhodopsin activation in the disc membrane and permeability changes in the plasma membrane. Previous studies using whole retinas or isolated outer segments have provided conflicting(More)
Light decreases GTP and ATP levels in purified suspensions of physiologically active frog rod outer segments still attached to their inner segment ellipsoids (OS-IS). (a) The GTP decrease is slower in OS-IS (t1/2 = 40 s) than in isolated outer segments (t1/2 = 7 s), which suggests there is more effective buffering in OS-IS. (b) The GTP decrease becomes(More)
Cyclic GMP hydrolysis by the phosphodiesterase (PDE) of retinal rod outer segments (ROS) is a key amplification step in phototransduction. Definitive estimates of the turnover number, kcat, and of the Km are crucial to quantifying the amplification contributed by the PDE. Published estimates for these kinetic parameters vary widely; moreover,(More)
Cyclic GMP has been implicated in controlling the light-regulated conductance of rod photoreceptors of the vertebrate retina. However, there is little direct evidence correlating changes in cGMP concentration with the light-regulated permeability mechanism in living cells. A preparation of intact frog rod outer segments suspended in a Ringer's medium(More)
The light-activated guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cyclic GMP) phosphodiesterase (PDE) of frog photoreceptor membranes has been assayed by measuring the evolution of protons that accompanies cyclic GMP hydrolysis. The validity of this assay has been confirmed by comparison with an isotope assay used in previous studies (Robinson et al. 1980. J. Gen.(More)
Two minor proteins of frog rod outer segments become phosphorylated when retinas are incubated in the dark with 32Pi. The proteins, designated component I (13,000 daltons) and component II (12,000 daltons), are dephosphorylated when retinas are illuminated. The dephosphorylation is reversible; the two proteins are rephosphorylated when illumination ceases.(More)