Physiology of Light Perception Laboratory
Light influences humans at all levels – it sets our circadian clock, controls our hormones, sleep, mood, and adapts brain-body physiology to the natural day-night cycles. However, nowadays, in modern societies, with abundant use of artificial light at night, human completely disregards the natural light/dark cycles. We stay awake later and later. This means that we are active late, we eat late, and also we sleep less. The reciprocal aspect, insufficient light during the day, is generally overlooked but is also very problematic; we spend nearly 90% of the day indoor, under low intensity, artificial light.
There is now mounting evidence that this untimely, either excessive or insufficient, and nearly continuous exposure to artificial light is a major factor in sleep and circadian rhythm disruption and has deleterious consequences on health; from acute, temporary impairments to major chronic diseases like metabolic syndrome or depression.
So it is absolutely critical to understand (1) how Light-Dark cycles impacts our physiology and (2) how the ipRGCs, the cells that inform the brain of the ambient light, function.
* co-first authors, † corresponding authors,
Abbas F, Becker S, Jones BW, Mure LS, Panda S, Hanneken A, Vinberg F. Revival of light signaling in the postmortem mouse and human retina. Nature. 2022. doi: 10.1038/s41586-022-04709-x.
Mure LS. Intrinsically Photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells of the Human Retina. Front Neurol. 2021 Mar 25;12:636330. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2021.636330.
Mure LS†, Vinberg F, Hanneken A, Panda S†. Functional diversity of human intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells. Science. 2019 Dec 6;366(6470):1251-1255. doi: 10.1126/science.aaz0898.
Mure LS, Le HD., Benegiamo G, Chang MW, Rios L, Ngalla J, Maini N, Kariuki T, Dkhissi-Benyahya O, Cooper HM, Panda S. Diurnal transcriptome atlas of a primate across major neural and peripheral tissues. Science (2018). doi: 10.1126/science.aao0318.
Mure LS, Hatori M, Ruda K, Benegiamo G, Demas J, and Panda S. Sustained melanopsin photoresponse is supported by specific roles of beta-arrestin -1 and -2 in deactivation and regeneration of photopigment. Cell Reports (2018) 25, 2497–2509. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.11.008.
Benegiamo G, Mure LS, Erikson G, Le HD, Moriggi E, Brown SA and Panda S. The RNA-binding protein NONO coordinates hepatic adaptation to feeding. Cell Metab. 2018 Feb 6;27(2). doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2017.12.010.
Mure LS*, Hatori M*, Zhu Q, Demas J, Kim IM, Nayak SK, Panda S. Melanopsin-encoded properties of melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells. Neuron. 2016 Jun 1;90(5). doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.04.016.
Jones KA*, Hatori M*, Mure LS*, Bramley JR, Artymyshyn R, Hong SP, Marzabadi M, Zhong H, Sprouse J, Zhu Q, Hartwick AT, Sollars PJ, Pickard GE, Panda S. Small-molecule antagonists of melanopsin-mediated phototransduction. Nat Chem Biol. 2013 Oct;9(10):630-5. doi: 10.1038/nchembio.1333.