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Cell Mol Life Sci. 2010 Jan;67(1):99-111. doi: 10.1007/s00018-009-0155-7. Epub 2009 Oct 29.

Melanopsin and inner retinal photoreception.

Author information

1
Faculty of Life Sciences, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PT, UK. helena.bailes@manchester.ac.uk

Abstract

Over the last ten years there has been growing acceptance that retinal photoreception among mammals extends beyond rods and cones to include a small number of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs). These ipRGCs are capable of responding to light in the absence of rod/cone input thanks to expression of an opsin photopigment called melanopsin. They are specialised for measuring ambient levels of light (irradiance) for a wide variety of so-called non-image-forming light responses. These include synchronisation of circadian clocks to light:dark cycles and the regulation of pupil size, sleep propensity and pineal melatonin production. Here, we provide a review of some of the landmark discoveries in this fast developing field, paying particular emphasis to recent findings and key areas for future investigation.

PMID:
19865798
DOI:
10.1007/s00018-009-0155-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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