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Isolation of chick retina cones and study of their diversity based on oil droplet colour and nucleus position

By R. López-López, M. López-Gallardo, M. J. Pérez-Álvarez and C. Prada


The chick retina has four morphological cone types that differ not only in shape, but also in the visual pigment in the outer segment, in the colour of the oil droplet in the inner segment and in synaptic connectivity. Neither the type of droplet nor the visual pigment has been definitively established for the four cone types. The main aim of the present work has been the isolation of entire live photoreceptors in order to study the oil droplet colour in each cone type and to quantify each type. We have improved an earlier retinal cell isolation method and obtained large numbers of entire cones. Principal cones (27% of the cones) possess a yellow or colourless droplet. Accessory cones (27% of the cones) all contain a small pale green droplet. Straight cones (44% of the cones) have a red, orange, yellow, or colourless droplet. Oblique cones (1.66% of the cones) all have a colourless droplet. We have found that straight cones with a red, orange, or yellow droplet differ in terms of the position of the nucleus and their percentage and conclude that they are distributed in three rows in the outer nuclear layer (ONL) of the central retina. Our study of 4,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole-stained retinal sections has revealed three rows of nuclei instead of the two currently thought to form the ONL. Together, our results show a larger cone diversity than previously known, suggest a larger functional diversity and provide an efficient method for isolating entire chick photoreceptors

Topics: Regular Article
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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