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Drosophila mutant with a transducer defect

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The trp is a conditional phototransduction mutant of Drosophila. Direct electrical measurements and shot noise analysis suggest that a prolonged intense light causes in the mutant a reduction in the quantum efficiency for quantum bump production that does not arise from bleaching of the visual pigment. This effect depends on the duration of the light and only weakly on its intensity. In the normal fly, an intense blue light that shifts the visual pigment from rhodopsin to metarhodopsin, induces an excitatory process manifested by a prolonged depolarizing after potential (PDA). In the mutant, the PDA has a small amplitude and bump noise is superimposed on the response. It can thus be shown that the excitatory process underlying the PDA is also present in those trp mutants where the PDA voltage response is small or absent. It is suggested that the absence of the PDA voltage response in the mutant is probably due to a defect in an intermediate process, which links the excitatory process to the membrane conductance change.

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Minke, B. Drosophila mutant with a transducer defect. Biophys. Struct. Mechanism 3, 59–64 (1977).

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