Happy Holidays, 2013 From Webvision


Happy Holidays from Webvision.  We wish you a happy, healthy and productive holiday season and New Year.

Gabe Luna from Steve Fisher and Geoff Lewis’s retinal cell biology group at UC Santa Barbara Neuroscience Research Institute provided this festive laser confocal image of a wholemount from a normal retina with dye-filled retinal astrocytes using Lucifer Yellow (green) and Alexa Fluor 568 (red) which were used to examine the spatial organization between individual astrocytes.


Color Blindness: What Does It Look Like?


One of the common questions people have is what it means to be colorblind since that is one of the common visual deficit manifestations that they can relate to.  Color blindness (pretty good article on Wikipedia there) is very common and just about everyone knows someone who does not see the world quite like they do because of a form of color blindness.

I have a post over on Jonesblog that renders some natural scenes as protanopes, deuteranopes and tritanopes would see them and talks about how to simulate your own images for various forms of color blindness.

The Evolution of Disease

Lasker 4 month RE_mosaic2_sm

We have another beautiful image (larger size image here) from Gabe Luna in Steve Fisher’s and Geoff Lewis‘ group.  This image representing the evolution of disease post retinal detachment, earned Honorable Mention in the 2013 Olympus Bioscapes International Digital Imaging Competition.

The image is a 60x image using laser scanning confocal image of the murine retinal nerve fiber layer after 2 weeks after retinal detachment.  The ganglion cell axons (red), astrocytes (green), and blood vessels (blue) are labeled using SMI-32, GFAP, and Collagen IV antibodies respectively.


Polypoidal Choroidal Vasculopathy

Polypoidal Choroidal Vasculopathy_sm

We had a recent case of Polypoidal Choroidal Vasculopathy here at the Moran Eye Center, imaged here as an ICG angiogram (large image here).  Polypoidal Choroidal Vasculopathy is an uncommon disorder of the choroidal circulation summarized in the Ciardella et. al. paper Polypoidal Choroidal Vasculopathy.

“The primary abnormality involves the choroidal circulation, and the characteristic lesion is an inner choroidal vascular network of vessels ending in an aneurysmal bulge or outward projection, visible clinically as a reddish orange, spheroid, polyp-like structure….   The natural course of the disease often follows a remitting-relapsing course, and clinically, it is associated with chronic, multiple, recurrent serosanguineous detachments of the retinal pigment epithelium and neurosensory retina with long-term preservation of good vision.”

ICG angiogram provided by James Gilman of the Moran Eye Center.


Seminar: Hope Shi, Die Fledermaus: Regarding Retinal Light Adaptation, Chicks Are Mice with Wings

Hope Shi

Hope Shi will be delivering a seminar, Die Fledermaus: Regarding Retinal Light Adaptation, Chicks Are Mice with Wings on December 12th at 1:00pm in  the John A. Moran Eye Center auditorium.


Through adaptation, animals can function visually under an enormous range of light intensities. Adaptation to changes in light intensity takes place early, in the retina. One role of adaptation is to regulate the spatiotemporal tuning of retinal outputs via ganglion cells. We used the optokinetic response to characterize contrast sensitivity (CS) in the chick retina as a function of spatial frequency and temporal frequency at different mean light intensities. We previously found that adaptation caused a shift in tuning preference of CS from light to dark.

Recently, we explored mechanisms that modulate spatiotemporal CS under different adaptational conditions. We injected agents affecting dopamine (DA) and nitric oxide

(NO) actions and gap junction coupling into the eyes (vitreous bodies) of dark- or light-adapted chicks. We demonstrated that cell-cell coupling and NO, as well as DA, are adaptation-sensitive modulators of spatiotemporal visual processing in the retina.

Optokinetic CS is a rapid and noninvasive method for assessing retinal function, which can be manipulated rapidly, conditionally and reversibly by intravitreal injection of specific pharmacological agents. The chick’s large eyes, and the similarities of control of light adaptation in chick and other species (e. g., mouse), make the chick a powerful new model for retinal research.