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Neuron. 1993 Mar;10(3):523-31.

The effect of recoverin-like calcium-binding proteins on the photoresponse of retinal rods.

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Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle 98195.


The rod photoresponse is triggered by an enzyme cascade that stimulates cGMP hydrolysis. The resulting fall in cGMP leads to a decrease in Ca2+, which promotes photoresponse recovery by activating guanylate cyclase, causing cGMP resynthesis. In vitro biochemical studies suggest that Ca2+ activation of guanylate cyclase is medicated by recoverin, a 26 kd Ca(2+)-binding protein. To evaluate this, exogenous bovine recoverin and two other homologous Ca(2+)-binding proteins from chicken and Gecko retina were dialyzed into functionally intact Gecko rods using whole-cell recording. All three proteins prolonged the rising phase of the photoresponse without affecting the kinetics of response recovery. These results suggest that recoverin-like proteins affect termination of the transduction cascade, rather than mediate Ca(2+)-sensitive activation of guanylate cyclase.

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