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Effects of extracellular Ca++, K+, and Na+ on cone and retinal pigment epithelium retinomotor movements in isolated teleost retinas.


We have examined the effects of changes in extracellular ionic composition on cone and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) retinomotor movements in cultured isolated teleost retinas. In vivo, the myoid portion of teleost cones contracts in the light and elongates in the dark; RPE pigment disperses in the light and aggregates in the dark. In vitro, cones of dark-adapted (DA) retinas cultured in constant darkness contracted spontaneously to their light-adapted (LA) positions if the culture medium contained greater than or equal to 10(-3)M Cao++. DA cones retained their long DA positions in a medium containing less than or equal to 10(-6)M Cao++. Low [Ca++]o (10(-5)-10(-7)M) also permitted darkness to induce cone elongation and RPE pigment aggregation. Light produced cone contraction even in the absence of Cao++, but the extent of contraction was reduced if [Ca++]o was less than 10(-3) M. Thus, full contraction appeared to require the presence of external Ca++. High [K+]o (greater than or equal to 27 mM) inhibited both light-induced and light-independent Ca++-induced cone contraction. However, low [Na+]o (3.5 mM) in the presence of less than or equal to 10(-6)M Cao++ did not mimic light onset by inducing cone contraction in the dark. High [K+]o also promoted dark-adaptive cone and RPE movements in LA retinas cultured in the light. All results obtained in high [K+]o were similar to those observed when DA or LA retinas were exposed to treatments that elevate cytoplasmic cyclic 3',5'-adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) content.

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