ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-000203-3
Non-visual photoreception by a variety of vertebrate opsins
Kojima, D. and Fukada, Y.
Date: 1999
Source: Novartis Foundation symposium   224: 265-279; discussion 279-282 (Other)
Registered Authors: Fukada, Yoshitaka, Kojima, Daisuke
Keywords: none
MeSH Terms:
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Avian Proteins
  • Brain/metabolism
  • Columbidae
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins/metabolism*
  • Photoreceptor Cells, Vertebrate/metabolism*
  • Pineal Gland/metabolism*
  • Retina/metabolism
  • Rhodopsin/metabolism
  • Rod Opsins/metabolism*
  • Zebrafish
PubMed: 10614056
Extraretinal photoreceptors in animals are involved in a variety of physiological functions such as photo-entrainment of circadian rhythm, photoperiodicity and body colour change. We have identified pinopsin in the chicken pineal gland as a typical 'non-visual' photoreceptive molecule. Pinopsin with bound 11-cis-retinal shows a blue-light sensitivity (lambda max = 468 nm), and it may play a role in synchronizing the phase of the endogenous circadian oscillator with an environmental dark-light cycle. Pinopsin is not a unique pineal opsin in animals. In the zebrafish, we have detected expression of two rhodopsin genes, the nucleotide sequences of which are very similar but distinct from each other. One is canonical rhodopsin expressed in the retina, and the other is expressed in the pineal gland. The latter gene is widely distributed among teleosts, and we named it 'exo-rhodopsin' after extraocular rhodopsin. On the other hand, our effort to identify the 'deep brain opsin' responsible for the photoperiodic gonadal response resulted in the identification of two kinds of opsins; pinopsin in the toad anterior preoptic nucleus and rhodopsin in the pigeon lateral septum. Both of these opsins are localized in the cerebrospinal fluid-contacting neurons in the brain of the two animals. We also identified VAL opsin in zebrafish retinal horizontal cells, which have not been considered as photoreceptive cells. It has become evident that animals employ a wide variety of photoreceptive molecules for 'non-visual' purposes.