Article

Emergence of novel color vision in mice engineered to express a human cone photopigment

Neuroscience Research Institute and Department of Psychology, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106, USA.
Science (Impact Factor: 31.48). 04/2007; 315(5819):1723-5. DOI: 10.1126/science.1138838
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Changes in the genes encoding sensory receptor proteins are an essential step in the evolution of new sensory capacities. In primates, trichromatic color vision evolved after changes in X chromosome-linked photopigment genes. To model this process, we studied knock-in mice that expressed a human long-wavelength-sensitive (L) cone photopigment in the form of an X-linked polymorphism. Behavioral tests demonstrated that heterozygous females, whose retinas contained both native mouse pigments and human L pigment, showed enhanced long-wavelength sensitivity and acquired a new capacity for chromatic discrimination. An inherent plasticity in the mammalian visual system thus permits the emergence of a new dimension of sensory experience based solely on gene-driven changes in receptor organization.

0 Followers
 · 
122 Views
  • Science 10/2007; 318(5848):196c-196c. DOI:10.1126/science.1146519 · 31.48 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A common view in both philosophy and the vision sciences is that, in human vision, wavelength information is primarily 'for' colouring: for seeing surfaces and various media as having colours. In this article we examine this assumption of 'colour-for-colouring'. To motivate the need for an alternative theory, we begin with three major puzzles from neurophysiology, puzzles that are not explained by the standard theory. We then ask about the role of wavelength information in vision writ large. How might wavelength information be used by any monochromat or dichromat and, finally, by a trichromatic primate with object vision? We suggest that there is no single 'advantage' to trichromaticity but a multiplicity, only one of which is the ability to see surfaces and so on as having categorical colours. Instead, the human trichromatic retina exemplifies a scheme for a general encoding of wavelength information given the constraints imposed by high spatial resolution object vision. Chromatic vision, like its partner, luminance vision, is primarily for seeing. Viewed this way, the 'puzzles' presented at the outset make perfect sense.
    The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 02/2014; 65(1):125-171. DOI:10.1093/bjps/axt060 · 1.02 Impact Factor
  • Imagination Cognition and Personality 01/2011; 31(3):217-235. DOI:10.2190/IC.31.3.e

Full-text (2 Sources)

Download
92 Downloads
Available from
May 19, 2014