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Gracheva, E. O., Ingolia, N. T., Kelly, Y. M., Cordero-Morales, J. F., Hollopeter, G., Chesler, A. T., Sánchez, E. E., Perez, J. C., Weissman, J. S. & Julius, D. (2010) Molecular Basis of Infrared Detection by Snakes. Nature, 464 1006–1011. 
Added by: Sarina (31 Jan 2021 09:59:26 UTC)   Last edited by: Sarina (26 Jul 2021 11:47:15 UTC)
Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Gracheva2010
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Categories: Englisch = English
Keywords: Infrarot = Infrared, Schlangen = Snakes
Creators: Chesler, Cordero-Morales, Gracheva, Hollopeter, Ingolia, Julius, Kelly, Perez, Sánchez, Weissman
Collection: Nature
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Snakes possess a unique sensory system for detecting infrared radiation, enabling them to generate a ‘thermal image’ of predators or prey. Infrared signals are initially received by the pit organ, a highly specialized facial structure that is innervated by nerve fibers of the somatosensory system. How this organ detects and transduces infrared signals into nerve impulses is not known. Here we use an unbiased transcriptional profiling approach to identify TRPA1 channels as infrared receptors on sensory nerve fibers that innervate the pit organ. TRPA1 orthologues from pit bearing snakes (vipers, pythons, and boas) are the most heat sensitive vertebrate ion channels thus far identified, consistent with their role as primary transducers of infrared stimuli. Thus, snakes detect infrared signals through a mechanism involving radiant heating of the pit organ, rather than photochemical transduction. These findings illustrate the broad evolutionary tuning of TRP channels as thermosensors in the vertebrate nervous system.


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