Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Atomic-force microscopy

Rhodopsin dimers in native disc membranes

Neat rows of paired photon receptors are caught on camera in their natural state.

Abstract

In vertebrate retinal photoreceptors, the rod outer-segment disc membranes contain densely packed rhodopsin molecules for optimal light absorption and subsequent amplification by the visual signalling cascade1, but how these photon receptors are organized with respect to each other is not known. Here we use infrared-laser atomic-force microscopy to reveal the native arrangement of rhodopsin, which forms paracrystalline arrays of dimers in mouse disc membranes. The visualization of these closely packed rhodopsin dimers in native membranes gives experimental support to earlier inferences about their supramolecular structure2,3 and provides insight into how light signalling is controlled.

This is a preview of subscription content

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.

$32.00

All prices are NET prices.

Figure 1: Deflection image of a native eye-disc membrane adsorbed on mica, visualized by atomic-force microscopy (Nanoscope Multimode, Digital Instruments).
Figure 2: Organization and topography of the cytoplasmic surface of rhodopsin.

References

  1. Papermaster, D. S. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 43, 1300–1309 (2002).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Rios, C. D., Jordan, B. A., Gomes, I. & Devi, L. A. Pharmacol. Ther. 92, 71–87 (2001).

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Dean, M. K. et al. J. Med. Chem. 44, 4595–4614 (2001).

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Palczewski, K. et al. Science 289, 739–745 (2000).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Molday, R. S. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 39, 2491–2513 (1998).

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  6. McBee, J. K., Palczewski, K., Baehr, W. & Pepperberg, D. R. Progr. Retin. Eye Res. 20, 469–529 (2001).

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Krzysztof Palczewski.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Fotiadis, D., Liang, Y., Filipek, S. et al. Rhodopsin dimers in native disc membranes. Nature 421, 127–128 (2003). https://doi.org/10.1038/421127a

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/421127a

Further reading

Comments

By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.

Search

Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing