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Vis Neurosci. 1998 May-Jun;15(3):485-98.

Functional localization of soluble guanylate cyclase in turtle retina: modulation of cGMP by nitric oxide donors.

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Department of Biology, Boston University, MA 02215, USA.


The second messenger cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) plays a role in many aspects of retinal processing. cGMP-gated channels function in photoreceptors, Müller, bipolar, and ganglion cells; and cGMP can modulate gap-junction conductivity. In the inner retina, both particulate and soluble guanylate cyclases can elevate levels of cGMP. The soluble isoform of guanylate cyclase is activated by nitric oxide (NO). In turtle retina, nitric oxide synthase, the enzyme that synthesizes NO, has been previously localized in discrete amacrine cells, somata in the ganglion cell layer, and in many processes in the inner plexiform layer. However, there have been no studies localizing soluble guanylate cyclase in the turtle retina. To functionally localize soluble guanylate cyclase, we stimulated retinas with the NO donors (+/-)-S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine or spermine (nitric oxide) adduct, and then used immunocytochemistry to localize increases in cGMP-like immunoreactivity (cGMP-LI). The cells containing soluble guanylate cyclase should show cell autonomous increases in cGMP-LI in response to stimulation with NO. NO-stimulated increases in cGMP-LI occurred in many distinct amacrine cell types, select bipolar cells, some somata in the ganglion cell layer, and in discrete bands of processes in the inner plexiform layer. The pattern of cGMP-LI demonstrated qualitative dose response differences to the NO donors. This is the first localization of soluble guanylate cyclase in specific retinal neurons in the turtle; and the first functional activation of soluble guanylate cyclase in the amacrine cells of any species. The broad neuronal distribution of NO-stimulated cGMP-LI suggests that the NO/soluble guanylate cyclase/cGMP cascade is involved at several levels of visual processing in the inner retina.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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