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Activation of a visual pigment molecule to initiate phototransduction requires a minimum energy, Ea, that need not be wholly derived from a photon, but may be supplemented by heat. Theory predicts that absorbance at very long wavelengths declines with the fraction of molecules that have a sufficient complement of thermal energy, and that Ea is inversely(More)
Dark noise, light-induced noise and responses to brief flashes of light were recorded in the membrane current of isolated rods from larval tiger salamander retina before and after bleaching most of the native visual pigment, which mainly has the 11-cis-3,4-dehydroretinal (A2) chromophore, and regenerating with the 11-cis-retinal (A1) chromophore in the same(More)
The visual cycle is a chain of biochemical reactions that regenerate visual pigment following exposure to light. Initial steps, the liberation of all-trans retinal and its reduction to all-trans retinol by retinol dehydrogenase (RDH), take place in photoreceptors. We performed comparative microspectrophotometric and microfluorometric measurements on a(More)
The visual cycle comprises a sequence of reactions that regenerate the visual pigment in photoreceptors during dark adaptation, starting with the reduction of all-trans retinal to all-trans retinol and its clearance from photoreceptors. We have followed the reduction of retinal and clearance of retinol within bleached outer segments of red rods isolated(More)
Photoreceptors of nocturnal geckos are transmuted cones that acquired rod morphological and physiological properties but retained cone-type phototransduction proteins. We have used microspectrophotometry and microfluorometry of solitary isolated green-sensitive photoreceptors of Tokay gecko to study the initial stages of the visual cycle within these cells.(More)
Cone photoreceptors of the vertebrate retina terminate their response to light much faster than rod photoreceptors. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying this rapid response termination in cones are poorly understood. The experiments presented here tested two related hypotheses: first, that the rapid decay rate of metarhodopsin (Meta) II in(More)
We relate the collected experimental data on the minimum energy for photoactivation (E(a)) to the wavelengths of peak absorbance (lambda(max)) of 12 visual pigments. The E(a) values have been determined from the temperature-dependence of spectral sensitivity in the long-wavelength range. As shown previously, the simple physical idea E(a) =const. x(More)
Transduction and synaptic noise generated in retinal cone photoreceptors determine the fidelity with which light inputs are encoded, and the readout of cone signals by downstream circuits determines whether this fidelity is used for vision. We examined the effect of cone noise on visual signals by measuring its contribution to correlated noise in primate(More)
Vision begins with photoisomerization of visual pigments. Thermal energy can complement photon energy to drive photoisomerization, but it also triggers spontaneous pigment activation as noise that interferes with light detection. For half a century, the mechanism underlying this dark noise has remained controversial. We report here a quantitative relation(More)
Effects of temperature on the spectral properties of visual pigments were measured in the physiological range (5-28 degrees C) in photoreceptor cells of bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana) and crucian carp (Carassius carassius). Absorbance spectra recorded by microspectrophotometry (MSP) in single cells and sensitivity spectra recorded by electroretinography (ERG)(More)