A study of the retina shows that cells of the eye can convert light into electrical signals and that the process is a process of “retinogenesis”, a process that occurs during cells’ development and growth.
“There are some interesting findings that show that we have an interaction between the photoreceptors and the optic nerve,” said Dr Michael Bowers, a biologist at the University of Bristol in the UK and the study’s senior author.
“That suggests that the photoresceptors are capable of converting light into an electrical signal.
The light is converted into a range of chemical signals that are then converted into the signal being sent to the brain.”
This is the first evidence that this process can occur in the eye.
“The team used a fluorescent protein to identify the photosensory receptors.
In their study, the team compared the response of the phototransduction system in the retina to that of the optic nerves, which has not been previously studied.
They found that the retinal retinoid (PR) pathway, which is responsible for converting light from the retina into electrical energy, is activated in cells of a particular type of photoreceptor.
This type of receptor was previously known to be active in the human retina, but this was not the case in animals.
But the team found that when they compared the PR pathway in animals to that in humans, the human retinocytes were activated more than the mice, suggesting that the human phototrophins are more responsive to light than the mouse phototrophic ones.
The researchers also found that in mice, cells of this type of retina respond to light by converting it into a chemical signal that then activates a chemical messenger receptor.
And they found that this receptor was activated in the same way in humans as it is in the animal model.
Dr Bowers explained that the mechanism behind this was that the PR system in these retinal cells is more sensitive to light.
They were also able to show that this mechanism is different in humans and mice.
He said that this might explain why it was not seen in mice with a higher rate of retinal cell division, but in humans with less phototropic cells.
For example, there might be more phototrope production in the cells of humans with a greater rate of cell division than in mice.
He said this is an important finding because it may help explain why there are differences in vision between humans and other primates, which also have higher rates of phototrotoxins in their cells.”
We’re also seeing this in animals, because we have some animal models where these cells are more sensitive than in humans. “
[It] shows that phototroglobularity, the phenomenon of retinogenesis, has been a central part of primate evolution and that these cells can be more sensitive and are involved in phototoxicity.
We’re also seeing this in animals, because we have some animal models where these cells are more sensitive than in humans.
These new results show that photoreduction systems can be activated in humans at a very early stage in their development.”
What do the findings mean for vision?
Dr Bower said that in the future, it may be possible to develop devices that could be used to detect the changes in the light levels in a room and therefore help people with vision problems.
He added: “This is important because retinitis pigmentosa can lead to many problems in the vision, including visual disorders such as cataracts and macular degeneration.
People with this condition are also more likely to have problems with other types of vision.”
Dr Jody Pohl, from the University Hospital of St Andrews in the United Kingdom, is also a co-author of the study.
She said the findings support the idea that retinal photoresponses can be recruited in early embryos and are essential for the development of the eyes.
She said: “The fact that retinogenic retinal neurons are present in embryonic development is very exciting.”
It is very intriguing that this is something that is activated by light in the first place, and that it is so early in the development.
It could have important implications for the understanding of how the retina develops, and for the diagnosis of retinoacoustic diseases.
“Dr Bows said that he was particularly interested in what the photostructures involved are and how they may relate to retinal development.
He continued: “I think this is really interesting and exciting because it gives us a better understanding of what is going on in the early retina.”
These are not just the early cells but we can expect them to be involved in many of the processes that lead to the development and repair of the retinas, such as the development, the growth and the ageing of the cells.”______