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Understanding How Rods & Cones Transmit Electrical Signals
Light is detected in the retina by rods and cones that are highly polarized cells. The electrical signal originating through light absorption by visual pigment in the outer segment is modified by the presence of ion channels in the different sub-cellular compartments within rods and cones. Identifying the ion channels in the different compartments and determining their role in shaping the light response is a major goal of visual scientists. The ion channels and calcium regulatory mechanisms in the synaptic terminals of rods and cones are of particular interest to the laboratory since they are strategically positioned to control the membrane potential in that compartment and transmitter release from the photoreceptors.
Peter MacLeish, Ph.D.
Xiaoming Chen, M.D.
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