Demonstration of a genotype–phenotype correlation in the polymorphic color vision of a non-callitrichine New World monkey, capuchin (Cebus apella)

Authors

  • Atsuko Saito,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Animal Models for Human Disease, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry (NCNP), Tokyo, Japan
    • Department of Animal Models for Human Disease, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry (NCNP), 4-1-1 Ogawa-Higashi, Kodaira, Tokyo 187-8502, Japan
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  • Shoji Kawamura,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Integrated Biosciences, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
    • Department of Integrated Biosciences, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Seimeitou 502, 5-1-5 kashiwanoha, Kashiwa, chiba 277-8562, Japan
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  • Akichika Mikami,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University Inuyama, Japan
    • Department of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Primate Research Institute, Kyoto University, Kanrin, Invyama, Aichi 484-8506, Japan
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  • Yoshikazu Ueno,

    1. Center for Human Evolution Modeling Research, Primate Research Institute, Japan
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  • Chihiro Hiramatsu,

    1. Department of Integrated Biosciences, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
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  • Kowa Koida,

    1. Division of Sensory and Cognitive Information, National Institute for Physiological Sciences, Japan
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  • Kazuo Fujita,

    1. Department of Psychology, Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan
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  • Hika Kuroshima,

    1. Department of Psychology, Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan
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  • Toshikazu Hasegawa

    1. Department of Cognitive and Behavioral Science, Graduate School of Arts and Science, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
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Abstract

Color-vision polymorphism in New World monkeys occurs because of an allelic polymorphism of the single-copy red-green middle-to-long-wavelength-sensitive (M/LWS) opsin gene on the X chromosome. Because color-vision types can readily be estimated from allelic types of the M/LWS opsin gene, this polymorphic system offers researchers an excellent opportunity to study the association between vision and behavior. As a prerequisite for such studies, genetically determined color-vision types must be concordant with phenotypes determined directly by behavioral criteria (e.g., by a color discrimination test). However, such correlations between genotypes and phenotypes have been studied only for callitrichine species. Using genetic, electrophysiological, and behavioral approaches, we evaluated the color vision of brown capuchin monkeys (Cebus apella), a representative non-callitrichine model animal for physiology and behavior. Two allelic M/LWS opsins–P545 and P530–were identified in the studied captive population. Females had one or both of the alleles, and males had either one. The retinal sensitivity in P530 dichromats was short-wave shifted relative to that in P545 dichromats, whereas that in P530/P545 trichromats was between the two groups. In a discrimination task using Ishihara pseudo-isochromatic plates, P530/P545 trichromats were successful in discriminating stimuli that P530 and P545 dichromats were unable to discriminate. In a food-search task, P530/P545 trichromats were able to locate red targets among green distracters as quickly as among white distracters, whereas both types of dichromats took longer. These results demonstrate the mutual consistency between genotypes and phenotypes of color vision, and provide a solid genetic basis on which the ecology and evolution of color vision can be investigated. Am. J. Primatol. 67:471–485, 2005. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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