Ontogenetic changes in photoreceptor opsin gene expression in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch, Walbaum)

Temple, S. E., Veldhoen, K. M., Phelan, J. T., Veldhoen, N. J. and Hawryshyn, C. W. (2008) Ontogenetic changes in photoreceptor opsin gene expression in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch, Walbaum). Journal of Experimental Biology, 211 24: 3879-3888. doi:10.1242/jeb.020289

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Author Temple, S. E.
Veldhoen, K. M.
Phelan, J. T.
Veldhoen, N. J.
Hawryshyn, C. W.
Title Ontogenetic changes in photoreceptor opsin gene expression in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch, Walbaum)
Journal name Journal of Experimental Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0022-0949
Publication date 2008
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1242/jeb.020289
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 211
Issue 24
Start page 3879
End page 3888
Total pages 10
Place of publication Cambridge, United Kingdom
Publisher The Company of Biologists
Language eng
Subject 0601 Biochemistry and Cell Biology
0699 Other Biological Sciences
060802 Animal Cell and Molecular Biology
060809 Vertebrate Biology
Abstract Pacific salmonids start life in fresh water then migrate to the sea, after a metamorphic event called smoltification, later returning to their natal freshwater streams to spawn and die. To accommodate changes in visual environments throughout life history, salmon may adjust their spectral sensitivity. We investigated this possibility by examining ontogenetic and thyroid hormone (TH)-induced changes in visual pigments in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch, Walbaum). Using microspectrophotometry, we measured the spectral absorbance (quantified by λmax) of rods, and middle and long wavelength-sensitive (MWS and LWS) cones in three age classes of coho, representing both freshwater and marine phases. The λmax of MWS and LWS cones differed among freshwater (alevin and parr) and ocean (smolt) phases. The λmax of rods, on the other hand, did not vary, which is evidence that vitamin A1/A2 visual pigment chromophore ratios were similar among freshwater and ocean phases when sampled at the same time of year. Exogenous TH treatment long wavelength shifted the λmax of rods, consistent with an increase in A2. However, shifts in cones were greater than predicted for a change in chromophore ratio. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR demonstrated that at least two RH2 opsin subtypes were expressed in MWS cones, and these were differentially expressed among alevin, parr and THtreated alevin groups. Combined with changes in A1/A2 ratio, differential expression of opsin subtypes allows coho to alter the spectral absorbance of their MWS and LWS cones by as much as 60 and 90 nm, respectively. To our knowledge, this is the largest spectral shift reported in a vertebrate photoreceptor.
Keyword Development isoform
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Biomedical Sciences Publications
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Created: Wed, 03 Feb 2010, 12:00:38 EST by Macushla Boyle on behalf of Faculty of Science