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Transgenic rodless mice were given 1-h pulses of light of varying brightness at times of the night when they were normally active. The rodless mice showed decreases in locomotor activity during light pulses brighter than 2 lux; these decreases were significantly greater than those in wildtypes (ANOVA, P < 0.01). However, with very dim light, rodless mice showed no changes in activity, whereas wildtype mice actually increased their activity. It is suggested that irradiance detection could be enhanced by absence of image-forming vision. Enhanced inhibition of activity around twilight may be adaptive for mice in some circumstances and so help maintain genes for retinal degeneration in natural populations.


Journal article


Vision Res

Publication Date





575 - 578


Animals, Circadian Rhythm, Lighting, Male, Mice, Mice, Transgenic, Motor Activity, Retinal Degeneration, Retinal Rod Photoreceptor Cells