• bipolar cell;
  • metabotropic glutamate receptor;
  • retina;
  • synaptic transmission;
  • TRP channel


For almost 30 years the ion channel that initiates the ON visual pathway in vertebrate vision has remained elusive. Recent findings now indicate that the pathway, which begins with unbinding of glutamate from the metabotropic glutamate receptor 6 (mGluR6), ends with the opening of the transient receptor potential (TRP)M1 cation channel. As a component of the mGluR6 signal transduction pathway, mutations in TRPM1 would be expected to cause congenital stationary night blindness (CSNB), and several such mutations have already been identified in CSNB families. Furthermore, expression of TRPM1 in both the retina and skin raises the possibility that a genetic link exists between certain types of visual and skin disorders.