Cone signal contributions to electroretinograms [correction of electrograms] in dichromats and trichromats.
PURPOSE: To find out how the different cone types contribute to the electroretinogram (ERG) by quantifying the contribution of the signal pathways originating in the long (L-) and the middle (M-) wavelength-sensitive cones to the total ERG response amplitude and phase. METHODS: ERG response amplitudes and phases were measured to cone-isolating stimuli and to different combinations of L- and M-cone modulation. Conditions were chosen to exclude any contribution of the short wavelength-sensitive (S-) cones. The sensitivity of the ERG to the L and the M cones was defined as the cone contrast gain. RESULTS: In the present paper, a model is provided that describes the ERG contrast gains and ERG thresholds in dichromats and color normal trichromats. For the X-chromosome-linked dichromats, the contrast gains of only one cone type (either the L or the M cones) sufficed to describe the ERG thresholds for all stimulus conditions. Data suggest that the M-cone contrast gains of protanopes are larger than the L-cone contrast gains of deuteranopes. The response thresholds of the trichromats are modeled by assuming a vector summation of signals originating in the L and the M cones. Their L- and M-cone contrast gains are close to a linear interpolation of the data obtained from the dichromats. Nearly all trichromats had larger L- than M-cone contrast gains. Data from a large population of trichromats were examined to study the individual variations in cone weightings and in the phases of the cone pathway responses. CONCLUSIONS: The data strongly suggest that the missing cone type in dichromats is replaced by the remaining cone type. The mean L-cone to M-cone weighting ratio in trichromats was found to be approximately 4:1. But there is a substantial interindividual variability between trichromats. The response phases of the L- and the M-cone pathways can be reliably quantified using the response phases to the cone-isolating stimuli or using a vector addition of L- and M-cone signals. (+info)
Failure of many ophthalmologists to use lasers safely.
In 1990, after the detection of impairment of colour discrimination in laser operators, the College of Ophthalmologists recommended safety guidelines for the use of lasers. We measured the effectiveness of these guidelines and their impact on ophthalmological practice in the United Kingdom. Previously, in ophthalmologists not following the guidelines, there was a deterioration in colour discrimination after a laser session. No such deterioration was found in 10 ophthalmologists tested who adhered to the guidelines, but their colour discrimination was significantly worse than that of controls. Replies to a questionnaire disclosed that one third of senior ophthalmologists were unaware of the practices recommended. (+info)
Selective color constancy deficits after circumscribed unilateral brain lesions.
The color of an object, when part of a complex scene, is determined not only by its spectral reflectance but also by the colors of all other objects in the scene (von Helmholtz, 1886; Ives, 1912; Land, 1959). By taking global color information into account, the visual system is able to maintain constancy of the color appearance of the object, despite large variations in the light incident on the retina arising from changes in the spectral content of the illuminating light (Hurlbert, 1998; Maloney, 1999). The neural basis of this color constancy is, however, poorly understood. Although there seems to be a prominent role for retinal, cone-specific adaptation mechanisms (von Kries, 1902; Poppel, 1986; Foster and Nascimento, 1994), the contribution of cortical mechanisms to color constancy is still unclear (Land et al., 1983; D'Zmura and Lennie, 1986). We examined the color perception of 27 patients with defined unilateral lesions mainly located in the parieto-temporo-occipital and fronto-parieto-temporal cortex. With a battery of clinical and specially designed color vision tests we tried to detect and differentiate between possible deficits in central color processing. Our results show that color constancy can be selectively impaired after circumscribed unilateral lesions in parieto-temporal cortex of the left or right hemisphere. Five of 27 patients exhibited significant deficits in a color constancy task, but all of the 5 performed well in color discrimination or higher-level visual tasks, such as the association of colors with familiar objects. These results indicate that the computations underlying color constancy are mediated by specialized cortical circuitry, which is independent of the neural substrate for color discrimination and for assigning colors to objects. (+info)
Preretinopic changes in the colour vision of juvenile diabetics.
AIMS: To examine the colour vision of juvenile patients suffering from diabetes mellitus without retinopathy in relation to metabolic and ophthalmic state. METHODS: Metameric matches, both Rayleigh (red/green) and Moreland (blue/green) were used to test the colour vision yearly of 10 juvenile patients. The patients were monitored over 4 years, and during the final year, their blood glucose level was determined directly after testing colour vision. An ophthalmic examination was performed on the day of colour vision testing and blood and urine were analysed regularly throughout the 4 years. Their results are compared with an aged matched control group of 20 subjects, seven of whom were retested after 9-16 months. RESULTS: After 4 years, the colour vision results show an enlarged matching range for the Moreland match, as well as a smaller increase in the matching range for the Rayleigh match. No significant correlation was found between blood glucose at the time of testing and any of the variables measured. CONCLUSION: The pattern of colour vision deficits in metameric matching shown by juvenile diabetics is consistent with postreceptoral alterations of the inner retina, at this preretinopic stage of disease. Duration of diabetes is correlated with both colour vision changes and morphological alteration of the retina. (+info)
Is the rod visual field temporally homogeneous?
Cone vision has been shown to be temporally inhomogeneous across the visual field. In the periphery, contrast sensitivity is lower for low temporal frequencies and higher for high temporal frequencies. Here we ask a similar question for rod vision at mesopic luminances. Isolation is obtained by testing a well documented rod monochromat. We show that the rod visual field exhibits only a modest degree of temporal inhomogeneity. (+info)
Temporal analysis of the chromatic flash VEP--separate colour and luminance contrast components.
Temporal analysis of the chromatic flash visual evoked potential (VEP) was studied in human subjects with normal and anomalous colour vision using a deterministic pseudo-random binary stimulus (VERIS). Five experiments were carried out on four normal subjects investigating heterochromatic red-green exchange and single colour/achromatic (either red/grey or green/grey) exchange over a wide range of luminance ratios for the two stimuli, the effects of lowered mean luminance on the chromatic VEP and the effects of colour desaturation at constant mean luminance and constant luminance contrast. Finally, the performance of three dichromats, a protanope and two deuteranopes, on heterochromatic exchange VEP and on colour desaturation were investigated. In contrast to the chromatic electroretinogram, which shows great symmetry with respect to luminance ratio on opposite sides of the isoluminant point, the chromatic VEP demonstrated a distinct asymmetry when the colours exchanged included red. On the red side of isoluminance (red more luminant than green), a wave with longer latency and altered waveform became dominant. The effects of green stimulation were indistinguishable from those of achromatic stimulation at the same luminance contrast over the whole range of chromatic contrast and for all levels of desaturation studied. Desaturation of red with constant luminance contrast (desaturated red/grey stimulation) resulted in a systematic alteration in the evoked waveform. Subtraction of the achromatic first- and second-order responses from responses recorded in the red desaturation series resulted in remarkably uniform waveforms, with peak amplitudes growing linearly with saturation. The absence of interaction between achromatic and coloured components for all (including the most intense colour) stimulus parameters used suggests that the generators of these components are separate. Recordings from the dichromats showed that the contrast response minimum shifted from the point of photopic isoluminance to the point of zero cone contrast (at the silent substitution point) for the remaining cone type. The waveforms recorded with a series of luminance ratios were much simpler than those recorded from trichromats and symmetrical with respect to their isoluminant points. Despite the indication of the presence of L cones of apparently normal spectral sensitivity in the deuteranopes (on the basis of flicker photometry), there was no evidence for a red-sensitive component in the desaturation or heterochromatic stimulation series. The results are discussed in terms of the possibility of separate generation of chromatic and achromatic contributions to the VEP. (+info)
Homozygosity mapping of the Achromatopsia locus in the Pingelapese.
Achromatopsia, or total color blindness (also referred to as "rod monochromacy"), is a severe retinal disorder characterized clinically by an inability to distinguish colors, impaired visual acuity in daylight, photophobia, and nystagmus. Inherited as an autosomal recessive trait, achromatopsia is rare in the general population (1:20,000-1:50,000). Among the Pingelapese people of the Eastern Caroline Islands, however, the disorder occurs at an extremely high frequency, as recounted in Oliver Sacks's popular book The Island of the Colorblind: 4%-10% of this island population have the disorder and approximately 30% carry the gene. This extraordinary enrichment of the disease allele most likely resulted from a sharp reduction in population in the late 18th century, in the aftermath of a typhoon and subsequent geographic and cultural isolation. To obtain insights into the genetic basis of achromatopsia, as well as into the genetic history of this region of Micronesia, a genomewide search for linkage was performed in three Pingelapese kindreds with achromatopsia. A two-step search was used with a DNA pooling strategy, followed by genotyping of individual family members. Genetic markers that displayed a shift toward homozygosity in the affected DNA pool were used to genotype individual members of the kindreds, and an achromatopsia locus was identified on 8q21-q22. A maximal multipoint LOD score of 9.5 was observed with marker D8S1707. Homozygosity was seen for three adjacent markers (D8S275, D8S1119, and D8S1707), whereas recombination was observed with the flanking markers D8S1757 and D8S270, defining the outer boundaries of the disease-gene locus that spans a distance of <6.5cM. (+info)
Analysis of red/green color discrimination in subjects with a single X-linked photopigment gene.
Many subjects despite having only a single X-linked pigment gene (single-L/M-gene subjects) are able to make chromatic discriminations by Rayleigh matching, especially when large fields are used. We used a combination of psychophysics (Rayleigh match), electroretinograms (ERG), and molecular genetic techniques to rule out several possible explanations of this phenomenon. Use of rods for chromatic discrimination was unlikely since strong adapting fields were employed and the large-field match results were not consistent with rod participation. A putative mid- to long-wavelength photopigment that escapes detection by current molecular genetic analysis was ruled out by finding only a single L/M photopigment in flicker ERGs from 16 single-L/M-gene subjects. Large-field match results were not consistent with participation of S cones. Amino acid sequence polymorphisms in the S-pigment gene that might have shifted the S cone spectrum towards longer wavelengths were not found on sequencing. The mechanism of chromatic discrimination in the presence of a single photopigment therefore remains unknown. Further possible explanations such as variations in cone pigment density and retinal inhomogeneities are discussed. (+info)