Unique retina cell phenotypes revealed by immunological analysis of recoverin expression in rat retina cells.

Unique retina cell phenotypes revealed by immunological analysis of recoverin expression in rat retina cells.

Unique retina cell phenotypes revealed by immunological analysis of recoverin expression in rat retina cells.

Abstract

Among retina-specific proteins, recoverin is unique with respect to its cellular regulation in that it is found in rods, cones, some bipolar cells, and a rare population of cells in the ganglion cell layer. Recoverin is a calcium-binding protein which inhibits rhodopsin kinase from phosphorylating rhodopsin. Because cells in the inner layers of the retina do not contain rhodopsin kinase, arrestin, or other phototransduction proteins, it seems likely that recoverin has a different function in those cell types. To study this protein more fully, antibodies were generated against the entire mouse recoverin protein, as well as against peptides from the amino and from the carboxyl termini. These antibodies confirmed the localization of recoverin in vivo and clearly demonstrated, in culture, cells which were recoverin positive and rhodopsin negative. Surprisingly, two unique cell phenotypes were seen in cell culture which are not found in vivo. These cells are [rhodopsin(+), recoverin(-)] and [arrestin(+), recoverin(-)]. These phenotypes appear to represent the same population of cells and suggest that the recoverin gene can be regulated independent of genes for other phototransduction proteins. This cell culture system will be useful for investigating environments and factors which participate in the expression of the recoverin gene, and may identify regulatory features of the recoverin gene which cause it to be illicitly expressed in small-cell lung carcinomas in cancer-associated retinopathy (CAR).

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