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Gene Review

OPN1SW  -  opsin 1 (cone pigments), short-wave...

Gallus gallus

Synonyms: SWS1, opsin
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Disease relevance of LOC396419

  • The induction of myopia caused significant increase in expression of Sonic hedgehog mRNA and protein and increased expression of blue and red opsin mRNA [1].
  • Significantly, marker genes for light sensitivity (red opsin) and for melatonin synthesis (HIOMT) appear to be activated in response to different signals [2].
  • Opsin-like immunoreactivity in the circadian pacemaker neurons and photoreceptors of the eye of the opisthobranch mollusc Bulla gouldiana [3].

High impact information on LOC396419

  • Pineal opsin (P-opsin), an opsin from chick that is highly expressed in pineal but is not detectable in retina, was cloned by the polymerase chain reaction [4].
  • Cone visual pigments exhibit faster regeneration from 11-cis-retinal and opsin and faster decay of physiologically active intermediate (meta II) than does the rod visual pigment, rhodopsin, as expected, due to the functional difference between rod and cone photoreceptor cells [5].
  • This opsin, identified in channel catfish and termed parapinopsin, defines a new gene family of vertebrate photopigments and is expressed in a majority of parapinealocytes and a subset of pineal photoreceptor cells [6].
  • In situ hybridization studies using probes derived from these retinal opsins, together with parapinopsin, reveal no expression of retinal opsins in pineal and parapineal organ and no expression of any opsin tested in the "deep brain," iris, or dermal melanophores [6].
  • When opsin expression was first detected, there were differences in the localization of RNA within the inner segment of cone photoreceptors, suggesting that morphological differentiation preceded the expression of photopigment molecules [7].

Biological context of LOC396419

  • This in vitro study shows that rhodopsin, followed by violet and blue opsin expressions is highly dependent on serum, cell density and tissue conditions, while red and green opsins are more autonomous [8].
  • Complex distribution of avian color vision systems revealed by sequencing the SWS1 opsin from total DNA [9].
  • Measurement of the kinetics of the CNTF response revealed that the factor acted on immature opsin-negative progenitors and that CNTF effects were unlikely to reflect enhanced cell survival [10].
  • Five opsin cDNA clones were isolated from a goldfish retina cDNA library and sequenced [11].
  • Taken together with the mutagenesis and model compound results, these resonance Raman data suggest that the opsin shift between the green and red cone visual pigment arises from two effects [12].

Anatomical context of LOC396419

  • Conditioned medium produced by cultured retinal cells (most likely glial cells) exhibited opsin stimulating activity identical to that of CNTF [10].
  • The pineal gland expresses a unique member of the opsin family (P-opsin; Max, M., McKinnon, P. J., Seidenman, K. J., Barrett, R. K., Applebury, M. L., Takahashi, J. S., and Margolskee, R. F. (1995) Science 267, 1502-1506) that may play a role in circadian entrainment and photo-regulation of melatonin synthesis [13].
  • To test whether the pacemaker neurons contain opsin-like proteins, several polyclonal antibodies that recognize opsins of vertebrate photoreceptors have been tested on histological sections of the eye and on the neurons in primary cell culture [3].
  • Topography of opsin within disk and plasma membranes revealed by a rapid-freeze deep-etch technique [14].
  • Virtually any vertebrate opsin cDNA can be expressed in COS cells, reconstituted with 11-cis-retinal, and the lambda max values of the regenerated pigments can be measured rather easily [15].

Associations of LOC396419 with chemical compounds

  • The Ultraviolet Opsin Is the First Opsin Expressed during Retinal Development of Salmonid Fishes [16].
  • The opsin shift, the difference in wavenumber between the absorption peak of a visual pigment and the protonated Schiff base of the chromophore, represents the influence of the opsin binding site on the chromophore [17].
  • Further characterization showed that the transdifferentiated cells express a number of photoreceptor genes, including interphotoreceptor retinoid binding protein, the alpha-subunit of phosphodiesterase, and opsin genes encoding rhodopsin, the red, the green, and the blue visual pigments [18].
  • The chick iris was most sensitive to short-wavelength light, demonstrating an action spectrum consistent with cryptochrome rather than with opsin pigments [19].
  • The binding of beta-ionone ring of retinal to a hydrophobic region of opsin was not enough to induce the enzyme activation [20].

Regulatory relationships of LOC396419

  • Using our cell ELISA protocol, we demonstrate a developmental increase of both cell markers which reflected an increase in the number of opsin-positive cells but an enhanced expression per cell in the case of MAP2 [21].
  • As shown immunocytochemically, CNTFR alpha expression in the presumptive photoreceptor layer of the chick retina starts at embryonic day 8 (E8) and is rapidly down-regulated a few days later prior to the differentiation of opsin-positive photoreceptors, both in vivo and in dissociated cultures from E8 [22].

Other interactions of LOC396419

  • Rhodopsin, violet and blue opsin expressions in the chick are highly dependent on tissue and serum conditions [8].
  • Pineal opsin: a nonvisual opsin expressed in chick pineal [4].
  • After this stage, the level of expression of FGF-R1 increases and its peak of expression at embryonic day 18 is concomitant with the detection of the opsin transcript [23].
  • The number of cells acquiring opsin immunoreactivity, determined after 3 days in vitro, was increased up to 4-fold in the presence of CNTF to maximally 10.5% of all cells [10].
  • For standardization of the assay, we employed antibodies against opsin and microtubule-associated protein (MAP2) which label distinct retinal cell classes [21].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of LOC396419

  • METHODS: Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and in situ hybridization with riboprobes against the five classes of opsins present in salmonids (UV, blue, green, red, and rhodopsin) were used to establish the sequence of opsin appearance and the localization of opsins to specific morphologic photoreceptor types [16].
  • Immunolocalization on adult zebrafish frozen sections demonstrates the green and red opsins are each expressed in different members of the double cone cell pair, the blue opsin is detected in long single cones, and the ultraviolet opsin protein is expressed in the short single cones [24].
  • The application of opsin immunocytochemistry to the pineal organ of the domestic mallard reveals antigenic sites in the outer segments of the pinealocytes [25].


  1. Expression of Sonic hedgehog and retinal opsin genes in experimentally-induced myopic chick eyes. Escaño, M.F., Fujii, S., Sekiya, Y., Yamamoto, M., Negi, A. Exp. Eye Res. (2000) [Pubmed]
  2. Differential regulation of melatonin synthesis genes and phototransduction genes in embryonic chicken retina and cultured retinal precursor cells. Cailleau, V., Bernard, M., Morin, F., Guerlotte, J., Voisin, P. Mol. Vis. (2005) [Pubmed]
  3. Opsin-like immunoreactivity in the circadian pacemaker neurons and photoreceptors of the eye of the opisthobranch mollusc Bulla gouldiana. Geusz, M.E., Foster, R.G., DeGrip, W.J., Block, G.D. Cell Tissue Res. (1997) [Pubmed]
  4. Pineal opsin: a nonvisual opsin expressed in chick pineal. Max, M., McKinnon, P.J., Seidenman, K.J., Barrett, R.K., Applebury, M.L., Takahashi, J.S., Margolskee, R.F. Science (1995) [Pubmed]
  5. Single amino acid residue as a functional determinant of rod and cone visual pigments. Imai, H., Kojima, D., Oura, T., Tachibanaki, S., Terakita, A., Shichida, Y. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. (1997) [Pubmed]
  6. Parapinopsin, a novel catfish opsin localized to the parapineal organ, defines a new gene family. Blackshaw, S., Snyder, S.H. J. Neurosci. (1997) [Pubmed]
  7. Development of the pattern of photoreceptors in the chick retina. Bruhn, S.L., Cepko, C.L. J. Neurosci. (1996) [Pubmed]
  8. Rhodopsin, violet and blue opsin expressions in the chick are highly dependent on tissue and serum conditions. Jacob, V., Rothermel, A., Wolf, P., Layer, P.G. Cells Tissues Organs (Print) (2005) [Pubmed]
  9. Complex distribution of avian color vision systems revealed by sequencing the SWS1 opsin from total DNA. Odeen, A., Hastad, O. Mol. Biol. Evol. (2003) [Pubmed]
  10. Ciliary neurotrophic factor promotes chick photoreceptor development in vitro. Fuhrmann, S., Kirsch, M., Hofmann, H.D. Development (1995) [Pubmed]
  11. Cloning and expression of goldfish opsin sequences. Johnson, R.L., Grant, K.B., Zankel, T.C., Boehm, M.F., Merbs, S.L., Nathans, J., Nakanishi, K. Biochemistry (1993) [Pubmed]
  12. What makes red visual pigments red? A resonance Raman microprobe study of retinal chromophore structure in iodopsin. Lin, S.W., Imamoto, Y., Fukada, Y., Shichida, Y., Yoshizawa, T., Mathies, R.A. Biochemistry (1994) [Pubmed]
  13. Light-dependent activation of rod transducin by pineal opsin. Max, M., Surya, A., Takahashi, J.S., Margolskee, R.F., Knox, B.E. J. Biol. Chem. (1998) [Pubmed]
  14. Topography of opsin within disk and plasma membranes revealed by a rapid-freeze deep-etch technique. Miyaguchi, K., Kuo, C.H., Miki, N., Hashimoto, P.H. J. Neurocytol. (1992) [Pubmed]
  15. Phylogenetic analysis and experimental approaches to study color vision in vertebrates. Yokoyama, S. Meth. Enzymol. (2000) [Pubmed]
  16. The Ultraviolet Opsin Is the First Opsin Expressed during Retinal Development of Salmonid Fishes. Cheng, C.L., Gan, K.J., Flamarique, I.N. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. (2007) [Pubmed]
  17. Wavelength regulation in iodopsin, a cone pigment. Chen, J.G., Nakamura, T., Ebrey, T.G., Ok, H., Konno, K., Derguini, F., Nakanishi, K., Honig, B. Biophys. J. (1989) [Pubmed]
  18. Expression of an array of photoreceptor genes in chick embryonic retinal pigment epithelium cell cultures under the induction of neuroD. Yan, R.T., Wang, S.Z. Neurosci. Lett. (2000) [Pubmed]
  19. Nonvisual photoreception in the chick iris. Tu, D.C., Batten, M.L., Palczewski, K., Van Gelder, R.N. Science (2004) [Pubmed]
  20. Activation of phosphodiesterase by rhodopsin and its analogues. Yoshizawa, T., Fukada, Y. Biophys. Struct. Mech. (1983) [Pubmed]
  21. Use of cell ELISA for the screening of neurotrophic activities on minor cell populations in retinal monolayer cultures. Fuhrmann, S., Kirsch, M., Wewetzer, K., Hofmann, H.D. J. Neurosci. Methods (1997) [Pubmed]
  22. A transient role for ciliary neurotrophic factor in chick photoreceptor development. Fuhrmann, S., Heller, S., Rohrer, H., Hofmann, H.D. J. Neurobiol. (1998) [Pubmed]
  23. Spatial and temporal expression patterns of FGF receptor genes type 1 and type 2 in the developing chick retina. Tcheng, M., Fuhrmann, G., Hartmann, M.P., Courtois, Y., Jeanny, J.C. Exp. Eye Res. (1994) [Pubmed]
  24. Cloning and characterization of six zebrafish photoreceptor opsin cDNAs and immunolocalization of their corresponding proteins. Vihtelic, T.S., Doro, C.J., Hyde, D.R. Vis. Neurosci. (1999) [Pubmed]
  25. Sensory and central nervous elements in the avian pineal organ. Korf, H.W., Vigh-Teichmann, I. Ophthalmic Res. (1984) [Pubmed]
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