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Chickens Have Cellular Sunglasses

When light enters your eye it triggers a sequence of actions, ultimately causing a signal to be sent to your brain. Even a mere single photon can be detected in your vision system. It all starts with a photon interacting with a light-sensitive chromophore molecule. The interaction causes the chromophore to change configuration and this, in turn, influences the large, trans-membrane rhodopsin protein to which the chromophore is attached. This is just the beginning of the cellular signal transduction cascade. But before any of this begins, in some species the incoming light has already been filtered and focused.  Read more

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2 Responses to Chickens Have Cellular Sunglasses

  1. Hey, Cornelius. Have you ever thought about doing one of these on angiogensis? It’s interesting on several counts. First, it’s a clear example of an irreducibly complex system. Second, it involves signalling–an enzyme wakes up the proteins in the cell wall to get things started, and signalling is a form of information. Third, it’s a case where something clearly designed to protect the body and vital orgrans can also be used opportunistically by cancer. That is, it has implications for the theodicy debate that’s raging today (and I don’t just mean the one that raged yesterday…).

  2. 2

    allanius:

    Great idea. I’d like to do that sometime.

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