Research progress on the role of non-image forming functions of eyes in magnetoreception of organisms

Authors: Song Sijia,  Qin Siying,  Hong Ying,  Zhang Chun
DOI: 10.3760/cma.j.cn115989-20190427-00202
Published 2021-06-10
Cite asChin J Exp Ophthalmol, 2021, 39(6): 568-571.

Abstract

Non-image forming functions of eyes include the regulation of biological circadian rhythm and biological magnetoreception.Biological magnetoreception means that various organisms including human obtain the direction and position information through the geomagnetic field.Creatures with retina realize magnetoreception regarding retinal cryptochrome as magnetoreceptor.Hypotheses of magnetoreception contain the radical-pair theory and the biological compass theory.The two theories both reckon retinal elements as possible receptor protein of magnetoreception, and eyes as receptor organ.The radical-pair theory suggests that change of radical spin influences the structure of retinal cryptochrome, leading to different downstream chemical reaction products, which makes the variable magnetic field information perceivable.And the biological compass theory proposes a rod-like complex composed of polymerized cryptochromes and magnetoreceptor proteins, which can point to different directions due to light and magnetic signals.These changes in retina transmit geomagnetic field signal to the brain, and then sense of direction is formed.Researching biological magnetoreception promotes a novel perspective in the diagnosis and treatment of eye and brain diseases, and brings innovation in magnetic material field.In this article, non-image forming functions of eyes, hypotheses of magnetoreception and possible mechanism of non-image forming functions of eyes in magnetoreception were reviewed.

Key words:

Non-image forming function; Magnetoreception; Cryptochrome; Magnetoreceptor protein

Contributor Information

Song Sijia

Department of Ophthalmology, Peking University Third Hospital, Beijing 100191, China

Qin Siying

Peking University School of Life Science, Beijing 100871, China

Hong Ying

Department of Ophthalmology, Peking University Third Hospital, Beijing 100191, China

Zhang Chun

Peking University Stem Cell Research Center, Beijing 100191, China

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Updated: June 24, 2021 — 8:15 am