Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Mice made to see a rainbow of colours

Gerald Jacobs at UCSB has introduced one genetic mutation into mice and enabled them to see a wider range of colors. Although the mutation only affected the photoreceptors in the retina, the mouse's cortical circuitry updated to account for the extra photoreceptors and can translate the output into colors.

The implications for humans are pretty cool - night vision without goggles, electromagnetic vision, or bee-like ultraviolet vision could be only one small genetic mutation away.

For more, check out the summary over at nature.com (no login required).

(picture from nature.com)

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