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Strange Blues: Melanopsin-mediated perception of space, colour and brightness

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Spitschan, M. (2018). Strange Blues: Melanopsin-mediated perception of space, colour and brightness. Talk presented at 41st European Conference on Visual Perception (ECVP 2018). Trieste, Italy. 2018-08-26 - 2018-08-30.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-0062-7
Twenty years ago, the photopigment melanopsin was discovered in the skin, brain and eyes of frogs. In humans, it exists only in the intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) where it modulates the pupil and mediates light-evoked responses affecting sleep and the biological clock. The role of the melanopsin pigment in mediating our perception of the world in its colourful and dynamic fine spatial detail is less clear. Recent animal work indicates not only that ipRGCs are endowed with an ability to encode spatial detail but that this information also gets transmitted to afferent targets beyond the retina. A role for melanopsin in visual perception goes against the orthodoxy that cones and rods are the only photosensitive elements in the retina. The goal of this symposium is to bring together researchers interested in melanopsin contributions to visual perception to discuss recent scientific developments.