Encyclopedia of Metalloproteins

2013 Edition
| Editors: Robert H. Kretsinger, Vladimir N. Uversky, Eugene A. Permyakov

Calcium in Vision

  • Jason D. Kenealey
  • Arthur S. Polans
  • Nansi Jo Colley
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-1533-6_146



Phototransduction refers to the process of converting light into electrical signals underlying the neural activity of the retina. Photoreceptors, the site of transduction in both invertebrate and vertebrate vision, can modulate their cellular responses as a function of light intensity and background illumination in order to cope with the wide range of lighting in the environment. These adaptation and transduction mechanisms rely on calcium signaling. A variety of ocular pathologies, including different forms of retinal degeneration and the aberrant growth of retinal precursors or other cell types in the eye, often are due to mutations in gene products regulating calcium. The discovery of these events is now providing opportunities for intervention in the treatment of very disparate diseases of the eye.

Calcium in Vertebrate Photoreceptors

Vertebrate photoreceptor cells can...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.



JK’s and ASP’s research is funded by the National Cancer Institute and the Retina Research Foundation/M.D. Matthews Research Chair. NJC’s research is funded by the National Eye Institute, the Retina Research Foundation, and the Retina Research Foundation/Walter H. Helmerich Research Chair. We gratefully acknowledge C. Vang for assistance in preparing the figures.


  1. Colley NJ (2010) Retinal degeneration through the eye of the fly. In: Dartt DA (ed) Encyclopedia of the eye, vol 4. Academic, Oxford, pp 54–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Fain GL, Hardie R, Laughlin SB (2010) Phototransduction and the evolution of photoreceptors. Curr Biol 20:R114–R124CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Jiang L, Baehr W (2010) GCAP1 mutations associated with autosomal dominant cone dystrophy. In: Anderson R, Hollyfield J, LaVail M (eds) Retinal degenerative diseases, advances in experimental medicine and biology. Springer Science, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  4. Katz B, Minke B (2009) Drosophila photoreceptors and signaling mechanisms. Front Cell Neurosci 3:2CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Nakatani K, Chen C, Yau K-W, Koutalos Y (2002) Calcium and phototransduction. In: Baehr W, Palczewski K (eds) Photoreceptors and calcium. Kluwer/Plenum, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  6. Ohguro H, Nakazawa M (2002) Pathological roles of recoverin in cancer-associated retinopathy. In: Baehr W, Palczewski K (eds) Photoreceptors and calcium, 2nd edn. Kluwer/Plenum, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  7. van Ginkel P, Darjatmoko S, Sareen D et al (2008) Resveratrol inhibits uveal melanoma tumor growth via early mitochondrial dysfunction. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 49:1299–1306CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Vogt N, Desplan C (2007) The first steps in Drosophila motion detection. Neuron 56:5–7CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Wang T, Montell C (2007) Phototransduction and retinal degeneration in Drosophila. Pflugers Arch 454:821–847CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Yau KW, Hardie RC (2009) Phototransduction motifs and variations. Cell 139:246–264CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jason D. Kenealey
    • 1
  • Arthur S. Polans
    • 2
  • Nansi Jo Colley
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Biomolecular ChemistryUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, UW Eye Research InstituteUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA