Rod and cone photoreceptors are coupled by gap junctions (GJs), relatively large channels able to mediate both electrical and molecular communication. Despite their critical location in our visual system and evidence that they are dynamically gated for dark/light adaptation, the full impact that rod–cone GJs can have on cone function is not known. We recorded the photovoltage of mouse cones and found that the initial level of rod input increased spontaneously after obtaining intracellular access. This process allowed us to explore the underlying coupling capacity to rods, revealing that fully coupled cones acquire a striking rod-like phenotype. Calcium, a candidate mediator of the coupling process, does not appear to be involved on the cone side of the junctional channels. Our findings show that the anatomical substrate is adequate for rod–cone coupling to play an important role in vision and, possibly, in biochemical signaling among photoreceptors.

Mouse rods signal through gap junctions with cones

ASTERITI, SABRINA;GARGINI, MARIA CLAUDIA;CANGIANO, LORENZO
2014

Abstract

Rod and cone photoreceptors are coupled by gap junctions (GJs), relatively large channels able to mediate both electrical and molecular communication. Despite their critical location in our visual system and evidence that they are dynamically gated for dark/light adaptation, the full impact that rod–cone GJs can have on cone function is not known. We recorded the photovoltage of mouse cones and found that the initial level of rod input increased spontaneously after obtaining intracellular access. This process allowed us to explore the underlying coupling capacity to rods, revealing that fully coupled cones acquire a striking rod-like phenotype. Calcium, a candidate mediator of the coupling process, does not appear to be involved on the cone side of the junctional channels. Our findings show that the anatomical substrate is adequate for rod–cone coupling to play an important role in vision and, possibly, in biochemical signaling among photoreceptors.
Asteriti, Sabrina; Gargini, MARIA CLAUDIA; Cangiano, Lorenzo
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11568/325867
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