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Functional characterisation of naturally occurring mutations in human melanopsin

Melanopsin is a blue light-sensitive opsin photopigment involved in a range of non-image forming behaviours, including circadian photoentrainment and the pupil light response. Many naturally occurring genetic variants exist within the human melanopsin gene (OPN4), yet it remains unclear how these variants affect melanopsin protein function and downstream physiological responses...

Reciprocal interactions between circadian clocks and aging

Virtually, all biological processes in the body are modulated by an internal circadian clock which optimizes physiological and behavioral performance according to the changing demands of the external 24-h world. This circadian clock undergoes a number of age-related changes, at both the physiological and molecular levels. While these changes have been considered to be part of the...

Deletion of Metabotropic Glutamate Receptors 2 and 3 (mGlu2 & mGlu3) in Mice Disrupts Sleep and Wheel-Running Activity, and Increases the Sensitivity of the Circadian System to Light

Sleep and/or circadian rhythm disruption (SCRD) is seen in up to 80% of schizophrenia patients. The co-morbidity of schizophrenia and SCRD may in part stem from dysfunction in common brain mechanisms, which include the glutamate system, and in particular, the group II metabotropic glutamate receptors mGlu2 and mGlu3 (encoded by the genes Grm2 and Grm3). These receptors are...

Using siRNA to define functional interactions between melanopsin and multiple G Protein partners

Melanopsin expressing photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (pRGCs) represent a third class of ocular photoreceptors and mediate a range of non-image forming responses to light. Melanopsin is a G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) and existing data suggest that it employs a membrane bound signalling cascade involving Gnaq/11 type G proteins. However, to date the precise identity of...

The evolution of irradiance detection: melanopsin and the non-visual opsins

Stuart N. Peirson 0 Stephanie Halford 0 Russell G. Foster () 0 0 Nuffield Laboratory of Ophthalmology, University of Oxford , Level 5 and 6 West Wing , The John Radcliffe Hospital , Headley Way

Evaluating the links between schizophrenia and sleep and circadian rhythm disruption

Sleep and circadian rhythm disruption (SCRD) and schizophrenia are often co-morbid. Here, we propose that the co-morbidity of these disorders stems from the involvement of common brain mechanisms. We summarise recent clinical evidence that supports this hypothesis, including the observation that the treatment of SCRD leads to improvements in both the sleep quality and psychiatric...

Vertebrate ancient opsin photopigment spectra and the avian photoperiodic response

Wayne I. L. Davies Michael Turton Stuart N. Peirson Brian K. Follett Stephanie Halford Jose M. Garcia-Fernandez Peter J. Sharp Mark W. Hankins ) Russell G. Foster ( 0 Departamento de Morfologa y

Differential Expression of Melanopsin Isoforms Opn4L and Opn4S during Postnatal Development of the Mouse Retina

Photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (pRGCs) respond to light from birth and represent the earliest known light detection system to develop in the mouse retina. A number of morphologically and functionally distinct subtypes of pRGCs have been described in the adult retina, and have been linked to different physiological roles. We have previously identified two distinct isoforms...

Experimental validation of novel and conventional approaches to quantitative realā€time PCR data analysis

Stuart N. Peirson 0 Jason N. Butler 0 Russell G. Foster 0 0 Department of Integrative and Molecular Neuroscience, Division of Neuroscience and Psychological Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial