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J Comp Physiol A. 1989 Dec;166(2):179-87.

Lanthanum mimicks the trp photoreceptor mutant of Drosophila in the blowfly Calliphora.

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Institut für Tierphysiologie, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Federal Republic of Germany.


The effect of lanthanum on the light response of blowfly (Calliphora erythrocephala) photoreceptors was studied. The electrophysiological behaviour of the photoreceptors in the presence of La can be summarized as follows: 1. Upon long stimulation the photoreceptors responded with a 'transient receptor potential', i.e. the cells depolarized at the onset of the stimulus and then repolarized to (or below) the resting potential. This effect was dependent on stimulus intensity and occurred only at high intensities. During illumination membrane noise was reduced. 2. The light-induced changes in membrane potential were paralleled by changes in membrane resistance. 3. The time course of the receptor response was slowed down. 4. Light adaptation led to an increase in response latency. 5. The recovery of the receptor response after light adaptation was slowed down. 6. The sensitivity of the receptor cells measured by the response to short light stimuli was reduced. In summary, the electrophysiological behaviour of Calliphora photoreceptors in the presence of La was very similar to that of the photoreceptors of the trp (transient receptor potential) mutant of Drosophila melanogaster. This result suggests that La and trp mutation affect the same cellular processes in the photoreceptors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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